Friday, December 30, 2016

Home Sweet Home

Hello, Dear Friends, in my last post I promised 
to share some photos of my son, Dustin and wife, Jen's 
home remodel. 

Dustin is my youngest and he married Jen in 
2014. Together they bought a 'fixer-upper', built
in the 1980's that had never been updated. 

Over the last two years they have worked and saved 
to remodel their dream home and although they are 
not completely finished (are homes ever really done?), 
I wanted to share with you their most recent project, 
the downstairs, especially the kitchen! 

Here, their fur-baby, Lucky relaxes by the fireplace, 
which was just updated with a new mantel. 

They are faithful Seahawks' fans and invited friends and family
over for their annual Seahawks' party and to see 
the results of their hard work in home improvement. 

Of course the house sported Seahawks' colored 
Christmas lights, too! :)

Here is the 'before and after' of the kitchen. 
Quite a difference, don't you think? 

Let's take a closer look........

So light and bright now! 

No more black appliances......

"Stay, stay at home, my heart, and rest;
Home-keeping hearts are happiest"
- Henry W. Longfellow -

Jen is an excellent cook (and Dustin has a few
signature dishes of his own), so a serious stove 
was first on the list. 

Marble subway tiles and quartz counters are 
easy to keep clean. 

"I do not understand how anyone can live without
one small place of enchantment to turn to"
- Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings -

"Home, the spot of earth supremely blest,
A dearer, sweeter spot than all the rest"
- Robert Montgomery -

Floating shelves and new windows keep things airy and light. 

These were the old windows. 

A deep farmhouse sink is handy for large pots and pans. 

A floating island is perfect for serving, 
food prep and unloading groceries. 

The flooring is new and matches the beams overhead. 

This was the old flooring......very nice, but 
the new floor looks so beautiful. All the trim 
was replaced, too. 

A built-in coffee maker keeps counters 
free from clutter. 

This area in-between the kitchen and dining area
 was changed, too.......
(Photo from DIL, Erica's baby shower in 2015)

Now it looks like this, with a built-in wine cooler
and fridge. 

They collect snowmen :)

Love these.....

The buffet in its new place beside the table. 
You can see the new French door at the end
of the table.
The wine cooler and bar area is just to the right.
They also added recessed lighting in the ceiling. 

Jen's artwork :)

The wall between the dining area and living room was 
opened up and framed in with rustic timbers.

On their list - a new dining set.
This one is from Dustin's bachelor days :)

A new bench by the door. 


The new mantel. 
A stocking for Lucky, too :)
They white-washed the old red brick. 

This was the old mantel. 
(During my DIL, Erica's baby shower in 2015)

"Happiness grows at our own firesides, 
and is not to be picked in strangers' gardens"
- Douglas Jerrold -

New window and trim. 

All the windows were original to the house
and were no longer energy efficient. 

Of course, this is a Seahawks' party, so everyone is
appropriately dressed, including this little '12th man' - 
baby grandson, Gavin.  

Right down to the booties which he 
is busily kicking off! 

Uncle Dustin built a kid's fort in the garage,
which Grandpa and little Ethan are checking out. 

He's such a fun Uncle!
There's even Christmas lights draped over it!

Time to eat! 
Homemade chili, meatballs, corn muffins, and lots of nibbles! 


So glad you could join our party! 


An Irish Blessing for the New Year
May you always have walls for winds,
a roof for the rain,
tea beside the fire,
laughter to cheer you,
those you love near you,
and all that your heart might desire.
Happy New Year,
Dear Friends!

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Christmas Memories

Hello, Dear Friends, I hope you all had 
a lovely Christmas! 

It always seems to go by too fast! 

I caught a bad cold in the week before, 
so many of my plans were put by the wayside.....

Christmas baking, last minute shopping.....

But I did manage to put together some gift baskets. 

We draw names every year and I picked 
my daughter-in-law, Jen, and Ramblin' Man
picked daughter, Heather. 

We had fun putting together gift baskets for them both.

The sweet 'winter scenes' gift boxes were part of
their gifts and I filled them with red wooden bead garlands
instead of the cookies I intended to bake :(

I found these darling gift boxes at Celestina Marie Designs,
one of my favorite Etsy shops.
Celestina has a wonderful blog called
Southern DayDreams
where you can find a link to her shop. 

She also makes darling tags. 
I found some wonderful things at her shop to help
fill the baskets - a wall urn, a small shelf, a painted sign......
I will take photos of them hung in my two girl's homes
next time I visit. 

Another Etsy shop I love is Stephanie's shop,
Rose Petal Blessings,  
from The Enchanting Rose blog.
You can find her shop-link there. 

She sews the most delightful little things and 
I found these darling little sewing baskets 
and set of coasters at her shop.

I also gifted myself with this sweet little basket :)

Both of these ladies go the extra mile with their
beautiful packaging, thoughtful notes and extra gifts
included in their shipments.

We had fun stuffing the baskets so full that they couldn't
hold another thing and some things had to travel separately. 

Both daughter's are wonderful homemakers and love 
to decorate their beautiful homes. 

DIL, Jen just remodeled her whole house
(which I will show you in my next post)
and Daughter, Heather is moving into a new home
in just a couple of weeks. 

Of course we have two little Grandsons, now,
and couldn't resist a few things for them! 

I even managed to bake a gingerbread cake (from a mix)
 Christmas morning to bring to the festivities.
Do you like my impromptu 'Poinsettias' ?

We were invited to my son, Gabe and wife, Erica's
home for Christmas dinner with our's and Erica's

I wore my late Mother-in-law's Christmas pin.

It was a beautiful, sunny day and the ride over
was lovely.
Can you see the fresh snow in the foothills?

We had the wonderful treat of seeing Mt. Rainier, too.

During the winter months, 'The Mountain' as we
call it, here in Western Washington State,
is usually hidden behind thick clouds.

Once we leave the open farmland, we travel through
thick forest skirting the foothills on our 90 min. drive.

We pass a few Christmas Tree farms on our way :)

After many miles we come to a beautiful, historic
town all decorated for the season.

We're almost there.....

It's a 'Grinchy' Christmas!
A favorite Christmas movie icon :)

Can you see my Grandson, Ethan's new Tee-Pee?
I made the Santa years ago.

A gift from Santa.....

His favorite trick - coming out from behind
the flaps to a round of applause!

Another gift from Santa - his own little table and chairs.

Sitting on Granpa's lap while opening gifts.

It was wonderful to see his reactions.

Look what Santa left behind!
 A little elf!
Our new Grandson, Gavin is
already 2 mos. old and you can tell
he doesn't like to eat much. Lol!
Check out those cheeks!
Just right for Gramma kisses xx

Time for us to eat!

Pita guacamole Christmas trees with pretzel trunks
and red pepper ornaments.

Baked ham, scalloped cheese potatoes, stuffed mushrooms,
salad, green-beans and rolls.

Apple, pumpkin, and pecan pies
along with gingerbread, for dessert.

(Diet plans are definitely in my New Year's resolutions!)

Then a rousing game of 'Pie in the Face'
with the final stand-off between the two Grandpa's.

Guess who lost........

All 'the girls' wisely declined to play......

There was one very special gift
from the family.

A Noble Fir tree to plant
in commemoration of their Nana,
that we can decorate each year
in her honor.


All too soon it was time to leave.

Kisses and hugs all around,
'Merry Christmas and Happy New Year' wishes, too.

Then the long drive home,
happy and filled with good food
and wonderful memories of
another Christmas,
 too soon come and gone.

Thank you, Dear Friends for all of your sweet visits
and kind comments on my last few posts.
You are all such wonderful, thoughtful friends.

I know I have been neglecting you lately,
but I will be catching up with all of you this week.
I've missed visiting you!


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