Update: What We've Been Up To

I've been a little distracted lately which explains why there haven't been any new posts.  So what have we been up to?

On Sunday we enjoyed a laid back Easter BBQ with both our families which was a lot of fun.  We hosted the past two Thanksgivings at our tiny, old apartment so we decided it would be nice to have everyone over for Easter in the new house.  Luckily, the weather cooperated with us and we were able to spend lots of time outside.  I meant to take lots of pictures, but between the hosting and hanging out with the family, I forgot.  I did manage to take one of my 93 yr old Swedish grandmother and I on my iphone though.

Tuesday was my 27th birthday and Tim took the day off from work so we could hang out and enjoy the day together.  We went to dinner at Gibbet Hill, a local place.  The restaurant is a renovated 100 yr old post and beam barn and it is set on 80 acres of conservation land.  We sat right next to a window and during dinner we watched the Angus cattle grazing on the rolling hills.

I've also been looking for work in most of my spare time, which means not a ton of time spent on my many projects that have been hanging out in the garage.  I graduated law school last year, passed the bar on my first try, but am still looking for full time work as a lawyer.  Hopefully the job market will get better and I'll find something soon because I'm kinda getting sick of being around the house all day.  The plus side is that I never really had a real break before - I went straight to law school from college and law school "vacations" aren't really vacations because they are loaded with the stress of studying and writing papers.  The time I've had off has definitely given me some much needed relaxation and has let my creativity flow.  I love that I now have free time for creative projects, but I will love it even more when I have a full time job so we will have the money to tackle some bigger projects in the house. 

Here's what I'm working on right now (Pardon the iphone pictures, I'm too lazy to use the good camera):

Refinishing the nightstands:

A project I've just begun with wine bottles:

Refinishing the bar stools:

Victorian chair revamp:

I'll be sure to post as the projects are completed!


New England Photography by JM

A little while ago I posted some New England photography taken by my brother JM here.  I thought I'd share just a few more of my recent favorites photos.  I can't wait to make some of these into prints and make a gallery wall! Check out more of his work here.

"Escape"  © 2011 JM

"Life is Good" © 2011 JM

"Placid" © 2011 JM

"Vision" © 2011 JM

All photos are property of JM. Please ask before using any of the above images. 


Peanut Butter Banana Chocolate Bars

Since it was Marathon Monday in Boston today, Tim sent me this great link on how to make homemade energy bars.  The recipe and directions I followed were adapted from (which was adapted from Susan Katcher) found here.  I ended up modifying the recipe because I didn't have all of the ingredients. 

Here's what I ended up using:
  • 1 stick of softened unsalted butter
  • 3/4 cup of brown sugar, loosely packed
  • 1/2 cup enriched white flour (instead of whole wheat flour)
  • 1 mashed, ripened banana
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup of crunchy store bought peanut butter (instead of all natural peanut butter)
  • 1 1/2 cups of honey granola with sliced almonds (instead of oats)
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (I didn't add 1/2 cup raisins or 1/2 cup walnuts)
I thought of drizzling honey over the top, then adding some crushed nuts, but didn't have any nuts.

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and butter an 8"x8" pan.
  2. Mix together butter and brown sugar (I don't have a mixer, so I just did it by hand).
  3. Mix in flour and granola.
  4. Mix in peanut butter, banana, vanilla extract, and chocolate chips.
  5. Add mixture to pan and bake for about 30 minutes.
  6. Allow to cool and enjoy!


Thrifty Thursday

Today while thrifting I found these gold painted old wooden frames for $4 each. I HAD to get them and I already have a few ideas of what I'm going to do with them. I was thinking of spray painting them, but I love the antiqued gold paint on them and the wood details are gorgeous.

I also came across this sturdy wooden desk chair on wheels. It would look so amazing painted white with a modern patterned seat cushion on it, but for $25 I had to pass on it.

I'm seriously still thinking about this pair of chairs that I also didn't buy.  They aren't real wood and they would have to be reupholstered and painted, but I really love the caning on the back of the chair!

Anyone else come across any great thrift store finds recently?


Spring Cleaning

We've got so much stuff we don't know what to do with it.  This is our 600 square foot above the garage space we'd love to eventually finish off to make into a bonus room.  It's so easy to keep this as our storage room and forget about the space, but it would be nice to pare down and live with less.  It's hard to believe that all of this stuff was at our old apartment which was only 1100 square feet.  There's a little bit of everything in here - a couple bins of clothing we need to go through and will probably donate, some of my old law school books (some of which are listed on, furniture, and basically an assortment of random stuff.  We've yet to tackle this room, but when we do we'll probably craigslist some stuff and have a tag sale. Can't wait!

Room shot from the door

When I went into the room to take a picture, I came across an old bookcase and an antique mirror.  I love re-discovering what we already have! I'm already thinking about how I can transform the bookcase!

And this is our walk in closet.  Before we moved, Tim and I had donated at least 5 huge garbage bags full of clothing and shoes.  While Tim was at work, I decided to tackle the closet so we could actually walk in our walk in closet. 

I can't believe I'm sharing this, but here's a before shot of the closet floor:

And here's a shot of the closet after I organized it a little.  It's not perfect, but definitely a lot better since you can now see the floor!

  I even came across a pair of ugly shoes I've never worn before! I'll definitely be adding these to our consign/donate pile.  What was I thinking...

I managed to fill a small trash bag of clothing and shoes to consign/donate after this tiny closet clean-out. 

At the beginning of each season I go through all seasonal clothes and shoes to see what I can get rid of following these three steps:   
  1. If it's brand new and I still haven't worn it, chances are I don't really like it so I get rid of it to make room for some new items.
  2. If I haven't worn it for the past year, it's time to go.
  3. If it's not comfortable and doesn't fit right. (Like those cute shoes two sizes too small!)


Out With the Old, In With the New!

Or so I thought.  I went to Lowe's to pick up the usual.  You know, a dryer vent cap (some little critters totally destroyed ours to pieces), a couple of rollers, and spraypaint.  I happened to walk past the blinds aisle and noticed that there was a massive sale annnnnnd we just so happened to need some new blinds for our french doors.  Our french door roman shades that came with the house were dirty, but were functional at least until one of the shades broke off.

We weren't planning on buying new ones anytime soon and were just going to deal with the ones we had 'cause there are just more important things to spend money on around here, but who could say no to four bamboo french door blinds in java mahogany for only $5.74 each?!

The only problem is we need 27" wide blinds and the ones I bought were a tad too small at 23".  At under six bucks each we thought we should hold onto them in case we find a use for them.  Although they won't work out on our french doors, we might use one on this door in our sunroom.


New Grill

What a beautiful weekend - the sun was shining and it actually felt like Spring.  We started to make some progress on our nightstands and they should be done this week.  We also checked out one of our town's dairy farm's homemade ice cream.  It was so good and since it's only down the road, I probably won't be fitting into my skinny jeans much longer!

With the milder New England weather finally here, we decided we would check out Home Depot and Lowe's for some gas grills.  We were just planning on looking, but Lowe's had an amazing deal we couldn't refuse - a Grill Master four burner stainless steel gas grill on sale for $149.99 (originally $199 and the sale ends today, 4/11).

Photo from

The box wouldn't fit into Tim's car, so we had to take everything out of the box and hope that it would fit that way - and it just barely did!  It's now sitting in our garage waiting to be assembled.  We can't wait to use it, especially when we have our family over for Easter!

If anyone has any great grilling or marinade recipes, I would love it if you let me know!



SOMETHING has been trying to get into our house - maybe a squirrel, or quite possibly rodents.  Whatever they are, they aren't welcome.  Even though I used to have a pet mouse creatively named "Mousey" when I was younger, I really don't want a whole mouse family as pets.  When some friends were visiting over the weekend and we were showing them a tour of the house, we noticed that our dryer vents were disconnected and the dryer was venting into the basement, getting lint everywhere.  The vent cap was literally in pieces outside as well.

After a trip to Lowe's and for less than $4, we had a new vent cap.

I began unscrewing the screws and managed to get three off, but the fourth had some larva that had made their home on top of it.  Gross.  Of course, I waited until Tim got home and made him do the dirty work and in minutes we had our new vent cap in place.


Finds of the Day

While driving through the country back roads today, the cutest store ever caught my eye.  I had to turn around and check it out.  Good thing I did, because I found the most amazing stuff for only $17!!

I ended up finding a bundle of vintage ribbon for only 6 bucks.  It's from an old textile factory that had gone out of business.  I'm loving the pattern!

And some vintage gray lace for 3 bucks:

And my favorite, this vintage milk glass creamer and sugar set for only 8 bucks.  I LOVE milk glass so I was so excited when I stumbled upon them I could have screamed.  We'll probably end up planting some herbs or tiny flowers in them.


Easy Wine Cork Buttons

For an upcoming project in the works I wanted to add some buttons, but didn't want to spend any money.  So, I figured, why not make them?  We had some wine corks floating around so I decided to repurpose them into buttons! 

You will need:
  • wine corks
  • a sharp knife
  • a cutting board
  • toothpicks
  • a pencil (optional)
  • clear spraypaint(optional)
Step 1:  Carefully use a fairly sharp knife to cut the cork into your desired thickness over a cutting board.  Each cork makes roughly 10 buttons.

Step 2:  Use a toothpick to make button holes in the cork.  Pierce the cork with the toothpick and push it through the cork completely.  I just eyeballed where I wanted the holes, but you can also use a pencil to mark where you want them.

Step 3:  To make sure the cork holes stay wide, keep some toothpicks in the holes for a few minutes.

Step 4:  This step is optional, but to seal the cork and for a slightly glossy finish, spray a coat of clear spraypaint on your buttons while keeping the toothpicks in the buttons.  

Here they are all finished without spraypaint:

Linked at:

Before and After Party: A Favorite! 

Tip Junkie handmade projects


Refinished: Tree Stump Table

We love refinishing what we have.  Remember this forgotten 60's tree stump table with the poly chipping off? All it took was a little patience sanding it down with the hand sander, one coat of Minwax stain in Dark Walnut, and a thin coat of poly.  I also reinforced the branch legs by adding a little carpenters glue.  Here's the finished product:

Jessie aka "Curious Georgette" checking it out


Project Office

While Amy was at work I decided to clean up and organize our office. The office has been the room where we dumped a lot of our miscellaneous boxes and things that didn't fit anywhere else in the house. I moved everything that we don't need on a daily basis (pretty much everything) into storage, and set up the room with our computer, desk and bookshelf.

Here's some pictures of what it looked like before I organized it (Notice our cat Jessie "helping" and the screen. I had to take the screen off to climb through the window to try and get rid of all our accumulated snow after one of our major snowstorms and was literally hanging on the roof):

It's not a huge makeover, but it turned out pretty well - very clean and organized. Someday we'd like to replace the flooring with hardwood and put a fresh coat of paint up, but for now we're happy with the end result!

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