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Friday, April 28, 2017

Cute Tiered Trays In Cotton Candy Colors

I recently created some easy and inexpensive tiered trays for a ladies luncheon.

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The beauty of this project is that it can be created in any color palette.

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You just need spray paint, small cordial glasses/goblets/candlesticks, clear glass plates and epoxy glue.

I found most of the glassware/candlesticks at Goodwill but you can also find clear glass items at Wal Mart and the Dollar Store.

Simply spray just the backs of the glass plates in three thin coats letting the paint dry completely between applications.

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Once all your pieces have been painted and are completely dry attach the candlestick or goblet to the plate with epoxy glue.

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Because only the backs of the plates are painted the trays are technically still food safe.

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However, I recommend adding a paper doily just as an extra measure of precaution.

TIP: You can add a third level to the trays by topping it with a mason jar.

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The trays were used in various areas throughout this lovely home.

The luncheon started at 11 am and there was such gorgeous morning light when the desserts were set out I couldn’t resist snapping a photo.

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I think the pink and mint color combination is my favorite.

After the luncheon, and a quick hand wash, the tray made its way to the Fashionista’s room where it now holds jewelry.

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Happy Friday Friends!


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

What Should We See in N.Y.C.?

Have you ever been to New York City and have a favorite list of “Must See’s”?

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The Fashionista and I will be headed there this July. While it will be my 3rd trip to the Big Apple it is her first and she is excited at all the prospects.

I have previously seen such touristy sites such as the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the top of the Empire State Building.

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So far on our agenda we plan on going to:

The Met

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The Guggenheim

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While we would love to “Hamilton” I am not willing to spend $400 per ticket for a cheap seat so I am wondering if there are any other Broadway shows we should see instead?

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So tell me all your favorite places to EAT, SLEEP and PLAY while in N.Y.C.


Sunday, April 23, 2017

Shiplap In The Bathroom

There’s one bathroom at Storybook Cottage that I haven’t shared with you.

But the time has now come as I am beginning to look at ways to update it and shiplap may be the answer.

Shiplap bathroom wall with white cabinetry, white marble countertop, wall mount faucet and rustic looking floor tile. #Shiplapbathroom #bathroom #Shiplapwall #whitecabinetry #whitemarblecountertop #wallmountfaucet #rusticlookingfloortile shiplap-bathroom-wall-with-white-cabinetry-and-rustic-looking-floor-tile Tracy Lynn Studio

You may be wondering why I am considering shiplap.

In both the master and guest bathrooms the original builder of Storybook Cottage applied wallpaper directly to sheetrock.

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For the love of design, if you are building a home, please do not select this option.

Opt to finish the walls in a smooth coat (aka skim coat) finish/surface and then apply wallpaper.

Because eventually you, or another individual who owns the home in the future, will want to remove the wallpaper.

This may be because you decide that beige, burgundy and green grapevine wallpaper doesn’t equate with the words “soothing master bath retreat”. 

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It is virtually impossible to remove wallpaper when it is applied directly to sheetrock. You will damage the sheetrock.

Ask me how I know.  :(

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There are some of you thinking “Aren’t there any other options for this predicament?”

Yes, you can apply another layer of wallpaper over the old. It doesn’t solve the issue, it merely camouflages it and delays the inevitable. Because of the high humidity in bathrooms the new paper may start to bubble and separate in a few years time. Given that wallpaper and the professional installation of it can be quite expensive this is not the best option.

Can you paint over it?

Yes, I actually did this in the guest bathroom and it’s a good temporary solution.

However, in our master bath because there are two separate layers of paper once painted, the seam where the second wallpaper trim was applied would be quite visible. 

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So, I am looking at other options.

Shiplap can be used in both informal….

and more formal bathroom settings.

If you love farmhouse, shiplap, vintage, farm sinks, tile, texture then you will love these farmhouse bathrooms.  Tons of inspirational photos that even Joanna Gaines would love.  Fixer Upper Fans....enjoy!!:

It can be painted…

…any color your heart desires.

Restful bathroom with shiplap clad walls painted gray green, Benjamin Moore Tranquility, accented with a chrome towel rail over the foot of the pedestal tub with floor mount tub filler flanked by a rustic zen style stool adorned with a fresh white towel and bath scrubs.:

It also provides a great base for other faux finishes.

No idea who's stunning work this is but it is absolutely gorgeous. Love the grey wood shiplap walls. The white shutters, the beautiful detailed vanity.:

There are numerous tutorials on how to install it and it seems to be a budget friendly option.

I think I may try it out on one straight wall in the guest bath first because it needs help ASAP.

The mirror finish is obviously having some issues. (Disclaimer: this was not installed by me, but a previous owner.)

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I’ve also been eager to remove this upper wall cabinet.

There is plenty of storage in the double sink base cabinets so it’s not needed and it really breaks up the flow of the room by stopping the eye with its rectangular obtrusiveness. (fancy design speak)

I also can’t tell you how many times I have come up from cleaning the floors or toilet below this cabinet and cracked my head on the corner. #notfun  #mouthlikeasailor

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So I would like to remove the cabinet and the oversized mirror.

Then apply shiplap and install two separate mirrors.

Like this:

Amber Interiors :: Client For Realz the Nicest People on the Planet:

…or this.

Lake House Master Bath Makeover - The Lilypad Cottage:

Here’s one more example because as you may have surmised there is one person living in Storybook Cottage that I need to talk into helping me do the work. He had no idea what shiplap was when I broached the subject. But he is a faithful reader of this blog.

Shiplap bathroom. How to Use Shiplap in the Bathroom: The material used for the walls is a 1x8 poplar ship lap that was pre-primed on all faces before installing. You do this for two reasons. First, to help reduce moisture absorption during the humid part of the year which in turn keeps the wood more stable. Second, so when the boards are installed and gaped to 1/8" between each board, you won't see the raw wood.  Shiplap bathroom ideas. White Shiplap bathroom. The Shiplap wood in this bathroom is painted in White Dove by Benjamin Moore. #Shiplapbathroom #Shiplap #Bathroom #BenjaminMooreWhiteDove

So feel free to leave a comment and help talk Mr. Decor into ridding our bathrooms of  past their prime elements.

Or tell me, “How do you get your partner onboard with your design schemes?”


You may click on each image to be taken to the original source.

Extraordinary Women ~ Mother Joseph Pariseau

Mother Joseph was born as Esther Pariseau on April 16th, 1823 in Saint-Elzéar, Quebec, Canada to parents Joseph and Françoise Rousseau. Her father, a skilled carriage maker, passed on his carpentry skills to his daughter. At the age of 20 Esther made the decision to devote her life to religious work and entered the newly founded Sisters of Charity of Providence (now Sisters of Providence) convent in Montreal.


It was said upon her entry on December 26, 1843 that her father informed the Mother Superior "I bring you my daughter, Esther, who wishes to dedicate herself to the religious life. She can read, write, figure accurately, sew, cook, spin and do all manner of housework. She can even do carpentering, handling a hammer and saw as well as her father. She can also plan for others and she succeeds in anything she undertakes. I assure you, Madame that she will make a good Superior someday." His words would prove to be correct.

In December of 1856 Mother Joseph and four missionary companions traveled to Vancouver, Washington with a mandate and desire to educate the children as well as care for the poor and the sick.


Upon their arrival they found no adequate accommodations and wasted no time in getting to work. A few months later a wooden house had been built to serve as their convent and school. In June of 1857, the Sisters of Providence opened the Hôpital Saint-Joseph. By the early 1860’s the nuns were also caring for orphans, the elderly and mentally ill.


Providence Academy, established by Mother Joseph in 1856 at Fort Vancouver

Courtesy of Sister of Providence Archives, Seattle, Washington

Mother Joseph was responsible for the completion of numerous hospitals, schools, orphanages and missions throughout the area of what today encompasses Washington, northern Oregon, Idaho, Montana and British Columbia.

She herself designed many of the buildings and raised the funds necessary for the building costs. The fund raising consisted of Mother Joseph, well into her sixties and beyond, accompanied by a few other sisters riding horseback into rough and tumble mining camps and soliciting funds from the miners.

Each begging tour lasted several months and the nuns often slept outdoors, braving the elements. The tours were considered a great success as they generally rose between $2,000 and $5,000 toward the realization of their building fund goals.


Mother Joseph also supervised the construction of each building. She was noted as being a perfectionist and it was not uncommon to see her inspecting rafters and bouncing on planks to ensure their support~ all while dressed in a full habit.


Mother Joseph passed away, at the age of 79, on January 19, 1902, after battling cancer for a number of years. She left a true legacy of humanitarian service. Her extraordinary contributions to the areas of education, health care, and the social services are still recognized and many remain in place over a century after her death.

She was honored by the West Coast Lumberman's Association for her beautiful carvings and work with wood.

Mother Joseph is recognized as one of the first architects of the Northwest.

The state of Washington recognized her many talents and contributions and named her as one of the state's two representatives to the National Statuary Hall. A bronze statue was presented in May of 1980 in Washington, D.C.


She was also inducted into the National Cowgirl Museum Hall of Fame for her many contributions in 1981.

A horseback riding, plank bouncing nun, I’m inspired, are you?


“Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” ~ 1 Peter 4:10

Friday, April 21, 2017

What’s Brightening My Day Vol. 6

Has spring arrived in your corner of the world?

I recently saw this charming pink gingham blazer and thought it would make a nice addition to my wardrobe. It was on sale for half price and I had one remaining gift card left over from Christmas. It arrived early this week and I am truly pleased.

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A bit of spring has arrived in our backyard as well. Two years ago I planted a half dead climbing rose found in the clearance section of our local gardening store.  It’s a lovely reminder that with a bit of love and care we all can bloom beautifully.

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The cutest model ever! Dear Nicola sent me a lovely photo of herself wearing her new apron. There are still a few left in my Etsy Shoppe.

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Not having cable I missed the Emmy Award winning mini series “John Adams” when it debuted on HBO a few years ago. My local library offered the 7 part series on DVD. It is indeed thoughtfully written and an amazing testament of the men and their families who founded our great country.

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I have a newfound respect for Abigail Adams. She was a tower of strength in a difficult time.

The costume and set design is also nothing short of spectacular.

John Adams (2008 TV Mini-Series) Photos with Laura Linney:

With warmer temperatures I enjoy recipes and treats of a cooler temperature. A recent decadent find is Graeters French Pot Ice Cream. My favorite flavor is Black Raspberry Chocolate Chip.

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What’s brightening your days?