Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Oh, hello!

It looks like my New Year's resolution of updating the blog on a regular basis went out the window. At least for the first few weeks of 2011. But as of TODAY the blog will be updated regularly. So much has happened since that last, stomach turning, post (did I really think that picture looked appetizing?) and I must post it on here for posterity. The pictures below demonstrate a pretty good overview of what has been going on over the past year in our Cottage bungalow: (The background in the pics tells as much of a story as the pics' subjects)

I have many before and afters to share, but the most important and well-crafted after is in the picture above :)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Sunday Night Dinner: Broiled Salmon (with Potato Chip Crust)

To make the bitter pill of the end of the weekend a little easier to swallow, I always try to make a special Sunday night dinner. Whenever we want to repeat a recipe, it is always a production trying to find it in our overflowing pile of cooking magazines. And so, I decided to start "comemorating" the recipes here, on my blog. Anf afterall, they are a part of our "cottage bungalow" experience.

Broiled salmon with potato chip crust:

3 slices large white sandwich bread, crusts removed
4 oz plain high-quality potato chips crushed into little pieces (about 1 cup)
6 tbsp chopped fresh dill fronds (or 2 tbsp dried dill)
1 whole side of salmon filet (about 3.5 lbs)
1 tsp olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
3 tbsp dijon mustard

1. Adjust one oven rack to uppermost position (about 3 inches from heat source) and second rack to upper middle position; heat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Pulse bread in food processor until processed in pieces the size of Grape Nuts cereal (you should have about 1 cup). Spread crumbs evenly on rimmed baking sheet; toast on lower rack, shaking pan once or twice, until golden brown and crisp, 4 to 5 minutes. Toss together bread crumbs, crushed potato chips, and dill in small bowl; set aside.
3. Increase oven setting to broil. Cut pieces of heavy duty foil 6 inches longer than filet. Fold foil lengthwise in thirds and place lengthwise on rrimmed baking sheet; position salmon lengthwise on foil, allowing excess foil to overhang baking sheet. Rub filet evenly with oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper. Broil salmon on upper rack until surface is spotty brown and outer 1/2 inch of thick end is opaque when gently flaked with paring knife, 9 to 11 minutes. Remove fish from oven, spread evenly with mustard, and bread bread crumb mixture onto fish. Return to lower rack and continue broiling until crust is deep golden brown, about 1 minute longer.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Closet/Vanity/Changing Room

As a reminder this is the "before" space that we were dealing with:

James then removed the window:

Boarded it up, and re-sheetrocked over it.

That same wall now looks like this:

This is the door to the new bathroom:

And my new vanity:

Another angle of the vanity (b/c I love it)

This is the wall facing out to the backyard. Lots of shelving for storage space:

And another angle:

And back to the original wall:

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Bedroom Ideas

Shout out to Debbie Deb who's been asking for this particular post!!!

The bedroom is allllmost done, which means it's almost time for me to start decorating! Our colors are going to be browns with bluish/greens (or Restoration Hardware's signature "silver sage"). Iwant for it to have touches of nautical with a little bit of mission style thrown in, but with an overall airy cottage feel. Straightforward enough, right? The pics below will probably explain my desired effect a little better:

I like the airy, nautical feel of this room. But mostly I like that I actually like how the "louvers" look in this picture. (James and I haven't quite seen eye to eye on the need for "decorative louvers" in the room)

I don't like this bedroom very much, but I do like the mission style bed. I found adorable mission style end tables from LL Bean here. Would that be overkill? Is this like my X obsession all over again?

In this room I like the color of the drapes. I also like that the bed is like the one in Madmen (although I would never own that headboard).

I like everything in this room (except for maybe the headboard). Light blue and brown complement each other so well! Not to mention the shelves with the X's on the right hand side (I guess my X infatuation isn't quite over).

Mmm... love everything in this room! I wish they had window treatments though, so that I could steal their window treatment ideas.

This is an interesting room... Mostly I just like the botanicals.

Finally found them! Our perfect windo treatments below (except ours will be a touch greener).

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Ferocious Doggie

James' ferocious doggie:

And my sweet pup:

Bedroom Progress...

Although we're still not quite ready for the before and after bedroom pictures, I have to post some pictures of the amazing progress that has already been made.

This is the view from our bed through the french doors, and into the yard:

Another view onto the patio/yard:

Our new closet/dressing area with the adorable octagonal window:

Our yummy new Ralph Lauren Spa, Seaside Retreat bedding:

And our stained hickory floors:

Getting there, getting there...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

(Not Much of an) Update

Although we (again, "we") have been hard at work on the master bedroom, and have made lots and lots of progress, it still doesn't feel as though we have much to show for it. Here is what we do have:

This is James framing out the french doors:

Here is the French Door with plywood on the outside (to give us some protection from the brutal Houston summer) and sheetrock all around:

Another view of wher the French Door will go (on the left):

Now we go into the "walk-through" closet (notice the lovely bathroom through the door):

And, again in the closet, the window framed out. We're going to put a little octagonal window in there:

That's all I got at the moment! Hopefully the "no hablo" brigade will finish floating and taping sooner rather than later, and then "we" will sand and stain the floors, paint the walls, and move back in!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Bedrooms and Heatwaves

The weather here in Houston has been holding steady at three digits for over a week now. And so, of course, this is the weekend that our bedroom wall looks like this:

And another angle of our master bedroom:

From the outside:

And Audikins doing his part to help by eating the sawdust:

While the temperature outside is 100 degrees, our house has managed to stay at a refreshing 85-90 degrees. But it will all be worth it in the end...

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Hickory Floors - Part 1

The new hickory floors in our bedroom are just about installed:

The have a lovely chocolate and vanilla look to them which is unique to hickory (or so I've been told).

Our stain options from top to bottom (and most to least favorite) are jacobean, dark walnut, early american, and provincial.


Sunday, May 10, 2009

Here We Go Again....

As of yesterday, demolition of the master bedroom is offiically underway. Underneath the pukey, icky carpet, we found a hardwood floor which would be nice if it wasn't so crappy, and a shabby addition with linoleum (in a master bedroom?? makes perfect sense for this house, I guess) and possibly asbestos (awesome!).

From the other angle:

My dear husband is doing this all himself. He is beyond amazing.

Here's hoping we'll have our lovely "after" sooner rather than later!!!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Drumroll Please...

The bathroom project has been ongoing since Thanksgiving weekend, when James and Sal took a sledgehammer to the bathtub, and before I knew it we were knee deep in a master bath renovation. Although it is still not completely done done, I decided that it is close enough, and it is finally time to do the long anticipated (at least by me) before and after! So, without further ado...

Before, the single vanity and toilet were on the left, and the tub as well as a linen shelf were on the right. We also had ceramic tiles on most of the floor, and a rotted subfloor:

Now "after," we have a walk-in shower and toilet on the left wall, and two pedestal sinks on the right (a linen cabinet is forthcoming, and will go on the far right corner):

The (disgusting) far left corner before:

The beautiful far left corner now. (The temporary tie-up shade is from Target. We ordered plantation shutters which are on their way, and will require another bathroom update on the blog).

Another before view of the gag-inducing left side of the bathroom:

The vanity on the left wall has been replaced by the beautious walk-in shower. The wall is carrera marble, the fixtures are all Pegasus from Home Depot, and the glass was impeccably done by Lone Star Glass here in Houston.

Instead of the single vanity, we now have two pedestal sinks. I adore the lights we found, they are from Restoration Hardware's Bistro Collection. The two medicine cabinets are Zenith from Lowes (we stil need to change their handles to oil-rubbed bronze handles). Lastly, the pedestal sinks are Kohler Portrait sinks

The toilet is also of Kohler's portrait collections:

And... one last view:

I love, love, LOVE it. I like to think that I can take full credit as consultant (and Audie as well, as the pictures from earlier posts indicate, he took his job as consultant very seriously), but all the kudos most definitely belong to James and not to mention JIMBO! Who deserves a plaque on the wall for all the blood, sweat, tears (and elevated blood pressure, and sore muscles, and sore joints) that went into the completion of these 56 square feet. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!!
And now... only the rest of the house left to go.