30 September 2010

The Hutch!

So as I said in my last post, I was finally able to get my hutch open. It was the paint that had stuck together on the door & frame. Silly me! Here's a recap of the history of my hutch:
  • It started out as two pieces, starting with a buffet that Vino got for me second hand for my birthday. 
  • I painted it black. 
  • It sat in storage for almost 3 years while we were living overseas. 
  • It came back out of storage and the doors didn't close anymore. 
  • I looked high & low for a hutch to put on top because I had no place to display my good dishes.
  • I found the second piece, a hutch that was FREE.
  • It was not pretty.
  • I painted it white, using leftover paint from our trim. I painted the inside back aqua, using leftover paint from our porch ceiling (it's paper & not perfect, but it works for now).
  • Back to the buffet: I peeled off the poorly done paint job on the top only. I sanded, stained & sealed the top then painted the rest the same white as the hutch.
  • I put the hutch on top of the buffet in our dining room. Finally.
  • I couldn't open the hutch door. It sat that way for a couple of months.
  • My mom suggested that I use a saw to get the door open.
Now that you're caught up, we move on to the present! I couldn't imagine using a saw to get the door open and not damaging the piece, until I found this pumpkin carving tool in storage:

It worked. And the only damage done was to the paint. I'm thinking about leaving it the way it is. It goes well with the rest of the distressing!

Oh, I also used a couple of pieces of wood and some braces in the back to attach the hutch to the buffet. Our house is rather flexible (you may have noticed the shims under just one foot of the buffet) and moves when people walk heavily. I didn't want to worry about the hutch falling over filled with dishes. But that's boring so I'm not going to show pictures.

And speaking of the dishes, these came from my Aunt Jean and Uncle Ken. Uncle Ken bought them for my grandmother when he was stationed in Korea and visited Japan. Aunt Jean gave them to me, and they came in the original boxes (including all the stamps!) that Ken shipped them in from Korea. I grew up eating Thanksgiving dinner on these dishes and I'm so thankful to be able to display them. They really are an heirloom for me!

I will add more stuff to the hutch over time - I have a set of good all white dishes that are still packed. Some of those will go in the hutch but the rest will be stored in the buffet.

The buffet was $60, but I'm not sure I should include the price of that since we've had it for several years & it was a gift from the man. So I won't count it. The glass for the shelves in the hutch were $26. The stain, seal & paint I already had from other projects. The hutch was free.
Total cost: $26

Things happen in our house gradually. After so many months of picturing our dining room like this in my head, I'm really thankful for one more thing completed! Well, mostly completed. Is anything really ever fully finished in an old house??

19 September 2010

I love a good road trip.

So some of my friends have once again not so subtly reminded me that it's been a long time since I posted anything. I kind of get in a funk sometimes. I haven't even been reading blogs lately. No reason. But I started back up in the last couple of days.

Here are some updates about the doin's at our house:
  • I FINALLY got my hutch open. My mom gave me a brilliant idea. She suggested that I saw through the paint that had sealed the door shut. At first I thought it would cause too much damage, but then I came across my pumpkin carving tools, which includes a very very small saw. It fit in the space at the top & bottom of the door, so I just sawed down through the paint & it opened LIKE MAGIC. Thanks Mom. So I should be posting next week about the hutch and it will be filled with DISHES!
  • We're getting an estimate on our roof soon. When the roof is done, then I can paint the outside of the house and it will no longer look like it's abandoned. I'd like to do a little more planting, too, and rip out those giant shrubs in the front.
  • I'm having a garage sale, so I'm in organizing mode. I'm tired of moving junk. And living in a small place, we really don't have a lot of room for stuff we don't use.
But on to the subject of the post! We went to Dallas/Ft. Worth over Labor Day weekend to visit friends & pick up some of our stuff that we had left in Spain. We went to some great restaurants & saw some fun stuff on the drive. Here's a gallery of our weekend:

 Our dear friends Christopher & Ragna

We had a great time in Dallas with our friend Jessica. She took us to this great restaurant called Park. I loved that turquoise fireplace with the stacked firewood and horizontal wood planks. This was outdoor seating.

This restaurant had a California beachy 60s flea market feel to it.
This was inside.
This was some of the yummiest pizza we've ever had: dried apricots, proscuitto, boursin cheese and basil.

 The counter at Pinkberry (super tasty yogurt place), view from our table outside.

More spying on Pinkberry patrons. This was Vino's yogurt: mango flavored with berries and fruity pebbles.

So a big part of the whole road trip experience is stopping at funky places along the way. I'm glad Vino wants to do things like that.
 Saw this place in Oklahoma. We thought it was an icecream parlor. We thought wrong.

Seriously. I think Vino wanted to take this one home.

Why would anyone think this place had ice cream? 

I peeked in the window of that pink camper. It has cheetah print carpet!
I asked that green guy permission first. He didn't care.
Of course there were singing metal frogs with GIT-tars.
I'll take one of each, please.
More than anything else at this store I wanted that soda bar arrow sign like nobody's business. Who cares that I have absolutely nowhere to put it right now. Lucky for me, it wasn't for sale. I really don't need a giant red arrow in my tiny house. But if I lived in a cool urban loft...
Pretty jar of ribbon on spools.
I was laughing at a shelf that had a giant head of the Burger King and one of Ronald McDonald on top.
It looks like I'm wearing a green chandelier hat.
Pink bike fencing.
Creepy doll-head fencing.
Last stop on the way home. Breakfast at this "famous" cafe in Oklahoma.
They were really nice to us, even though I was wearing my Husker shirt. 
It was the only clean thing I had left in my suitcase. :)

 This week I vow to return to the land-o-blog. I've missed it!