Friday, November 20, 2009

Clutter-free, really!

Our bonus room was the site of so much activity: this is where we home schooled, all of my crafting happened, band practice, and wide open storage of whatever didn't have a home. After I relocated all the crafting stuff, it looked like a bomb went off.

My first step was to move all the "keepers" into the place they would live. I made the usual piles of store, trash, give away, and use now. I actually had a "free indoor yard sale" for a few select treasure hunter friends. It was wonderful that some of the good stuff went to friends. When all was said and done, I had only one car load, 5 boxes, to take to the Hope Center. I devoted a set number of hours a couple of days a week so that I wouldn't feel too overwhelmed.
We have a new family room area. I know what is there and it is clean and clutter-free.
Eventually, we will have a twin bed in that far corner, to be used as a sort of daybed. When we do have guests, it will be a calming space for them. Of course, with time and moolah, we want to paint and put in new flooring. For now, clean and open is good.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Black Bean Soup

I have a wonderful, easy recipe for black bean soup that is perfect for this chilly weather. It is low in fat and very South Beach and Weight Watcher friendly.

3 cans black beans, drain and rinse 2 of them
1 can chicken broth
1/2 medium onion, chopped
24 oz. medium chunky salsa
1 Tbsp cumin

Cook the onions in a small amount of broth with the cumin until clear. Puree the drained beans with the salsa in a blender. Add this to the broth to heat through. (I use the rest of the broth to get the leftover puree out of the blender and add it to the soup.) Add the undrained beans and let it simmer, stirring often, about 20 minutes. This is great with other condiments and stuff added but it loses some of the "diet friendly"ness.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Time for adventure

This is taken in the cute little town of Hazel, Ky. in front of a huge antique mall. My mom and my handsome mate are waiting patiently for me to load my treasures in the car before the next store. (Side question: would your husband go with you on a day trip to a quaint little nowhere town to look at old stuff...with your mom? Would you want him to?) We had a wonderful day! We looked in all the shops and had a delicious lunch at Ann's Cafe. I found a few things: "gift not to be divulged here", some quilt mags, a round mirror, an old bottle and a tomato red metal divided cannister. Not a big quantity in stuff to take home, but a wonderful day of memories. My handsome mate does enjoy small towns and appreciates history and has the patience of a saint.

On the way home, we took a few minutes to admire the scenery. Land Between the Lakes is very nearby and the sun was setting. Not a great photo but you get the idea of a day well appreciated.
Hope you have a wonderful adventure with the people who mean the most to you!

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Architectural Interest

Newer homes often lack the character of yesteryear. "Back in the day" much thought was given to interesting molding, arches and panels. These days our home buying dollar doesn't allow a lot of room for fancy. I found this door at a house just before the bulldozer and brought it home, not sure what it's future held. Sometimes you just have to grab it when you see it. So, this lovely beaded board door rested in my basement for a few years. In a flurry of decorating inspiration, I mounted a corbel with a broken demilune tabletop on the door. After many yoga-like contortions (I was doing this alone), I got the door securely mounted on the wall with anchors. Then I hung the mirror on it...perfect to check your lipstick before you answer the door. I love to put a candle or flowers there on the shelf.
So, keep your eyes open for unusual but interesting treasures. They will eventually work their way into your space and add to the warmth of your home.