Saturday, April 30, 2011

Spring clean up down the shore

It's that time of year again, when I start the clean up down the Jersey Shore of my little cottage by the sea.
I'll be moving furniture around for a couple of weeks. Plans, Plans, Plans

This weekend I have a couple things I am hoping to get done.
1. Finish painting these 2 T back chairs that I actually began a month ago!!
 I only got the primer on these and then I abandoned them for bigger fish to fry in Florida. I have to finish them in creamy white.

 2. I also need to find a place for this vintage table

 that I have replaced in the dining room with  white T back  bar stools. You can see them in this previous post.

I love the table and it's adorable vintage drop leaf style, it just wasn't working out for us where it was. We had it set under the bar area, because we had no barstools. I just got them in January.
I hope the stools will work out better.
But I need a great place for this table to rest because I am not willing to part with it, so I got to thinking.
Sometimes I like to look at magazines and of course, so many great blogs out there, to get myself motivated.
I found these inspiring pictures that I adore. This room is yummy isn't it?
 I think it was "Cottage Living" mag. or the book "Waterside Cottages".

These vintage tables both look so awesome, and make me want to lug my table upstairs to the sunporch outside my bedroom, and create a little area for gaming and having some lunch with a view.

 That table with the boat on it looks so much like my dropleaf table. And I love the idea below, with the games stacked and at the ready, for any grey day.

Yep #3 I will be lugging my table up the stairs, and setting her up, to combine those 2 ideas.

I think I can fit her in somewhere up there on my sunporch... don't you?

#4. That table will be getting a fresh coat of white too.
#5. Find a new spot for those chairs I am going to finish painting.
#6 Add more starfish to windows
#7 Clean all the windows. Lets not get overambitious :)

I'll let you know how it all turns out.
You can see the results posted here.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Wordless Wednesday Photo

Join in on the W.W.  linky party at 5 minutes for mom

Missing Florida, I want to go back.

We had such fun, visiting all the different islands. Me and the kiddos during spring break.
 Our last trip was to Siesta Key. It was so pretty there. The sand was so so soft like powdered sugar!
And the snorkeling was pretty neat too.

I love when the water is clear, and as you can see in this pic, so, so aqua!
You can see from the hotels in the background this Key is a little more populated.

We swam over to this little private cove.

Where the birds just sit right next to ya.

 I think he was the gate keeper. He let us pass.

That is a pelican just floating out there.

This is such a peaceful place. Makes you think that ...yes life is so good.
 The kids were loving it.
 So was I. 

I wanna go back.
Hunting for seashells.

Away from the sorting of the socks.
cleaning of the fridge.
The Scrubbing of the bathrooms.

Just enjoying the sea.
And the good life.

Joining Good Life Wednesday at Sarah's

Monday, April 25, 2011

The renovation of the Cottage Beach House down the shore.

One thing I haven't shared and have been meaning to is

Our  Cottage Beach House at the New Jersey Shore

 We purchased our home at the shore because it had a view of the ocean. It was dark and dreary inside. We did all the work ourselves with the help of family. Tearing out the pot belly stove (our only source of heat) was difficult . See all the brick around it? There in the back left corner?...
( Ignore those crazy ladies in costumes... One of our theme parties.)
The Kitchen Before
The kitchen floor got torn out completely down to the sand underneath. Funny thing is we found that it was all built with scrap wood and old doors! My brother, sister in law, son and cuz, rebuilt that floor.

That back wall you see where the door is...My sister in law went to lean on it, and her arm went right through it!!!
 We didnt know it was that rotted!! So we had to replace that entire back wall. My son did all the demolition and my brother did the rebuilding of the walls.
We got our cabinets from Home Depot and my brother and sister in law helped put them in.
This is how it looks now.
The After
The back wall rebuilt, a nice new double french door, and some soft blue paint

On the right side wall, I used an old door to create an access door to the new heat system we had installed. I sanded it and painted it white with a little bit of distressed blue running through it.

 My brother made me a door out of beadboard ( to match my cabinets) to cover the electric panel which is to the right because there is no where else it could go. It's a tiny house. He also made the woodwork you see around the old door.
This area that is now a closet for our heater was where the refrigerator once stood.
To the left of the above area was a horrible orange countertop, very dark smelly brown cabinets and a washing machine!

I could not find a picture but here is a diagram of the  Kitchen Before
I am talking about the area on the right of the diagram.

That area now

And the refrig is now where the washer was when we bought the house

The washer is in the same closet as the heatrer is now.
The sink  which was under the little window you see here is on the other side of the room, on an angle facing in to the dining area.

 Sink in this corner.
And it is a little bar area here too. Which once was a big ugly orange counter.

The entire house had brown indoor outdoor carpeting, which my daughter and I ripped out, and lenolium under that which we also tore out.  Then we had someone install  a whitewashed wood.
This is a picture from the little living room, as you can see it's not much more than a shotgun shack.
That's what they call them when you can look right through them.
But that is what sold me. When I looked at the house, I could see right through to the beach grass swaying in the wind, the minute I walked in. But I do remember standing at that fence with the realtor and not being sure. Because of the work it needed.
To me now this thought seems unbelievable. That I even considered NOT buying it, seems crazy. The view is great, I mean the ocean is right there. A lot more than I ever thought our measly pockets could buy. And fixing her up has been so much fun.
 A true labor of love.
Here is a flash from the past.

My area in the 1930's         ( more info about this pic later)
My area now
I was not happy when they topped these rocks with concrete 
( it obstructed my view from the kitchen of the waves) 
but now, this is a favorite place of mine to walk .

When we finally finished the kitchen reno i picked a laminate floor that looked like slate, because the rocks that lined the beach behind me are all a slate color. 
 The rocks
And the counter that I picked reflects that same slate color with splashes of aqua in it.

Here is a closer look at the cabinets I chose, and I still really love them, now which is 6 years later. My counter is formica, not granite because at the time we really could not afford the granite. But I still absolutely love that counter top.
 The reno took about 7 months, with the help of my son, a friend of his, and my brother and sis in law. It was a lot of walls being rebuilt and floors, and beams.
 All so very worth it in the end. 
I hope you enjoyed my little tour of the Cottage down the shore.

Thanks so much for stopping in!

Joining these parties

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter flowers and fun in New Jersey

I am back in the New Jersey area to celebrate Easter with the entire family. My kitchen renovation is finally complete and this will be the first Holiday we share in it this year. Thought I might show some of the pretty spring things going on around here.
Fresh daffodils and hyacinths from my garden, with the morning dew. 
Going to link this one to the Live Every Moment Photo challenge

 I can see the dew melting off them as I arrange them. I do love this sort of thing.
The best part is they are all flowers the kids have gotten me over the years at Easter time, planted and returned each year. :))

An old lace tablecloth, I've had for 20 years. It is actually from the 1920's
I love the natural speckles on these organic range free eggs... no need to dye these.

I will dye a few of the white ones though. 
Cause you have to have pastel and pretty, for Easter don't you think?
I love my pastel fenton basket
and just a couple other baskets that I found years ago out thrifting.
My favorite is this pink one. 

Too pretty to even put anything inside!
 The underside of her looks like lace! I've never seen anything this lovely. My absolute fav!

A neat blue glass thrift store find from at least ten years ago filled with some eggs from long ago,  when the kids were little they blew out the egg and painted them in school. 
And 2 avon eggs my mom bought years ago.

It's fun to make the table pretty once in a while, with precious memories from the past.

I really enjoyed 2 things this Easter season.
1. Decorating the new mantle over my stove with flowers from my garden.

2. And I also enjoyed making this door decor out of 3 dollar store hats, 
and some bows and flowers that were laying around
 It was simple and quick... the way I like things...easy.

What did you enjoy most so far about your Easter Holiday?

 Tatertots and Jello

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