Friday, February 26, 2010

Fridays Favorite

Welcome to Fridays Favorite! Every Friday I plan on sharing with you one thing I really love. Hope you enjoy!!

The first thing I wanted to feature is an amazing candle made by the Tyler Candle Company. This brand knows how to make a killer candle in a beautiful container. You only have to burn it for a short time (about 40 min) to make your entire home smell wonderful! My favorite sent during the fall and winter months is Mulled Cider, everyone thinks I am baking when I have this burning. The scent just gives you a warm and fuzzy feeling inside. During the spring & summer months I rotate between 24K, French Market, & Lavish. Worth the cost since they will last forever and become a true favorite of yours as well!!
 IMG_4678.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Have an amazing Friday and great weekend! xo

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Clean & crisp...

One thing that I am leaning towards for our next master bathroom is white. Clean and crisp, spa like, the exact opposite of what we have now. My only question is, will I chicken out like I did when we were building this home? Blame is on the hormones of being 6 months pregnant when our current home was under construction. I wanted white carrara marble but I ended up with marone imperial. Yeah, white to dark brown out of frustration with the lacquer color I selected. I do know this next go around I am selecting all of my counters first and from there I will build off of the cabinet and wall color.

Here is our current bathroom. I do LOVE it, but I am ready for something new and fun. The next layout is similar to this with some added width between the bath and the wall where the shower & toilet room are located.

Photo_Video_f468fe27-7e1d-41b9-b98b.jpg picture by mamanzardo Photo_Video_88b04895-055f-4c59-85c5.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Here are a few images I have found for inspiration so far...

This one has a similar layout to how our bathroom will be. I do know we are going to a free standing tub rather than the drop-in style. With that in mind I am thinking of taking the windows in the bow down to the floor. If we do end up on a lot with privacy in the back then the leaded glass inserts seen here will have to be looked into a bit more. Having that much natural light would be amazing!
 daisypinkcupcake.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Here is another example, yet a bit warmer than the image above. I love how they used the horozontal lines in the flooring for a big impact, yet small cost. A great example of thinking outside of the box a bit to get a 'WOW' feature.
image1-1.jpg picture by mamanzardoimage2.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Speaking of a big impact on the floor, how amazing would this herringbone look as an inset for the bathroom floor. I wouldn't do the entire space like this, but add a 12" boarder in a similar tile and this in the center would be fab!
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Finally, yes, I am contemplating this. Caring the hardwood into the bathroom from the master bedroom. It adds SO much to the space. The bathtub for us is hardy used (as it is for most clients), so I wouldn't have to worry about the water issue in that space, just around the shower. We could get creative with that space to ensure limited amounts of water would hit the floor. Just something I am toying with for now, we will see!
master-bathroom-l.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Have a great Thursday everyone! Melissa :)

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Extreme makeover, cabin style.

Rob and I purchased this cabin in Missouri 2 years ago. The reason, location, location, location. It is perfectly situated on a private road, fully treed, right on the water, with the boat dock directly behind the 2-acre site. We had to look past all of the dark paneling and carpet from wall to wall. Rob knows me and knew that I could and would not stay in it with the shape it was in, so we decided to gut it. I used a word that I am not fond of using with interior selections; the 'B' word, budget. We do plan to demolish the existing home within the next 5 years to build new, so we wanted to keep the cost down yet still make it a comfortable space we could enjoy.
Here is a peak at the before photos. Be sure to check back for the mid-way and after photos in the following weeks. Hope you enjoy!!

Here is the kitchen 'before'. I can't describe to you how dirty and disgusting the cabinets were, you could take a spatula and scrape the grease off the door fronts. This was the first area to be tackled.
 n656745200_2863490_7637-2.jpg picture by mamanzardon656745200_1667455_3141-2.jpg picture by mamanzardo

This wall was separating the great room area and the kitchen; will it still be here later??
 DSC01248.jpg picture by mamanzardo

The fireplace, an ode to brown with the oh so beautiful 1970's paneling.
 DSC01247.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Yes, that is carpet in the bathroom, and yes, it really was that dirty. I can appreciate how the original owners did keep the flow going with a blue shower stall and matching toilet and sink, yet, not enough to even consider keeping it. ;)
 DSC01246.jpg picture by mamanzardoDSC01245.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Ahhh, the yellow bathroom. Again, keeping it consistent the original owners used a Harvest Gold tub/shower unit, toilet, and sink. Along with the ever so present carpet and retro hanging light fixture we had our work cut out for us here.
 n656745200_2863493_8740-2.jpg picture by mamanzardon656745200_2863494_9236-1.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Finally, the upstairs recreational room. Wall to wall carpet and floor to ceiling paneling. Nothing some elbow grease can't fix!
 DSC01250.jpg picture by mamanzardo

I will let you know of a great resource if you are doing a renovation of any size. It is the Habitat for Humanity re-sale store. They came to the cabin and picked up everything that we took out of the home. All of the light fixtures, old appliances, vanities, ect. They use the proceeds made from the resale of the items to help fund the new homes that are under construction. Be sure to take a little time to be gentle to the items you are removing and use this service!!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Towel Tuesday, tea towels that is...

Tea towels, one of my obsessions. I love how a fun, bright tea towel can add a lot to the kitchen. Our current kitchen is very neutral, so I use my tea towels to jazz up the area. My one requirement with them is that I can buy 2. I always have one by the cook-top and one next to the sink and of course they need to match!! Here are a few fun ones I found...

I do have a set of these from Anthropologie (retail $22 each CND), I loved them oh so much when I bought them until they were washed and half of the balls came off. After some time with a needle and thread they are back to normal, and even thought I did draw blood (sewing is not my strong point) I still love the whimsy flare they give the space.
 770110_crl_b.jpg picture by mamanzardo

There are some fun vintage finds as well, here is a great example...
 1teatowelmainimage.jpg picture by mamanzardo

By far, my favorite tea towels are by April Cornell. Once they get broken in and softened up they will become your kitchens new BFF. I have had some sets for years, the colors are still vivid and they are like wine, better with age. They may not be easy to find, but it just makes the find that much more enjoyable.
Here is one set that comes with a plaid and floral combination (retail $14 per set US).
 TTMEXSOPink.gif picture by mamanzardo

And another that is purchased as a single towel, so you will need 2 of course ;) (retail $7 each US).

TTAMANLtblue.gif picture by mamanzardo 
Happy towel Tuesday everyone. ;) Mel

Monday, February 22, 2010

The command center...

I love and spend a lot of my time at my small desk in our kitchen nook area. It is the perfect location, smack dab in the middle of our home. I prefer this area to a secluded office since I can still interact with the children, continue creating food in the kitchen, or catch up on the news from the TV. Here are a few great examples I have found over time of this great space. Happy Monday!!

This is our space where I do all of my research and blogging. The space was teeny tiny so I had to get creative with it. For our next home I will be doing the desk at a standard desk height not counter height as we did here (blame it on the hormones from being pregnant while building). If I have the room and can incorporate a comfy wing back chair I would be a very happy girl, we will see.
Photo_Video_760a0706-e5a1-465e-b81a.jpg picture by mamanzardo

This space has a lot of natural light and a very cozy feeling. Not sure how often the baskets would actually be used, knowing me I would climb up on a chair just to stuff crap in them...causing a headache when it is time to purge the junk.

11855_210433491074_46493706074_4553.jpg picture by mamanzardo
(Image from Coastal Living via web)

I think this one by far is my favorite (check out Lindy Wever's website, some beautiful work!). The only thing I would have done is incorporated glass doors on both sides of the center shelving. I love my cookbook collection and want to show it off.
lindyweaver2.jpg picture by mamanzardo
(Image from Lindy Weaver)

Here is an example of making this area an extension of the kitchen without breaking up the flow of the cabinetry.
ss_BHG155977.jpg picture by mamanzardo
(Image from Kitchen and Bath Ideas)

This image I used as inspiration for a command center we built in a home that was completed last year. Once we get our other computer back I will post a photo of that unit. It turned out great and the clients were extremely happy with it.
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(Image from Better Homes & Garden)

Here is the built-in we did in a clients home this past year that I mentioned above...
 DSC_0050.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Late night Jenga...

I spent most of the day yesterday cooking and baking for a dinner we hosted last night. Everything turned out great and we had a blast with our fabulous guest Jodie & Eric.

We started the evening off with a simple cheese try and of course, some great wine.

DSC_0411.jpg picture by mamanzardo

For dinner Rob got the Green Egg going for the steaks. If you do not know what the Green Egg is you need to check it out!!!  For sides I served the lovely Barefoot Contessa's Mustard Roasted Potatoes, and an orzo salad that I could live off of. It is a recipe I created using elements from a few different salads.

Roasted Veggie & Orzo Salad
2 red peppers, diced into half inch pieces
1 red onion, diced into half inch pieces
2 zucchini, diced into half inch pieces
1 eggplant, diced into half inch pieces
1 c. toasted pine nuts
4 oz goat cheese (feta works as well)
1/2 C. fresh basil, thinly sliced
8 oz. orzo
3.5 T. olive oil
3 T. pesto
2 T. red wine vinegar
2 T. fresh lime juice
Preheat the oven to 425. Combined all veggies with some olive oil, kosher salt, and coarse black pepper. Roast the veggies for 35 - 45 min, tossing occasionally. While the veggies are cooking you can cook the orzo as per the directions on the packaging. Whisk all of the dressing ingredients together and pour over the hot pasta so the flavors blend well. Once the veggies are done add to them to the pasta and mix well. Just before serving add the goat cheese, pine nuts, and basil. 
This dish is best made the day before.
*You can add roasted or grilled shrimp to make this into a main course.

I can tell my baking skill are not what they used to be. My first attempt at a dessert was, well, not successful one bit. With 2 apples, some puff pastry, and a few pears left over I came up with a pretty good dessert that almost burnt down my kitchen. Once I got all of the smoke out of the house and scrubbed the oven down I topped it off with a pineapple and rum glaze, it was a hit.

 DSC_0406.jpg picture by mamanzardo

After 6 bottles of wine the games started coming out and the Jenga challenge was on. We had a blast, it went late into the night, and I will admit that I am feeling it today.

 DSC_0448.jpg picture by mamanzardoDSC_0463-1.jpg picture by mamanzardoDSC_0452-1.jpg picture by mamanzardo

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The kitchen stool.

The kitchen stool. Everyone I know has them, so why are they so hard to find. I am not talking about any old barstool. Yet, one with style, durability, and comfort. I know I am asking for a lot here but I just want a comfy place to sit with my family and friends.
One day while surfing Rate My Space  I came across a kitchen with the perfect stool. Great shape with a classic design. They look oh so comfy!!
 The kitchen is the heart of our home, Kitchen remodel of our 11 year old space.  Busy family with 3 kids that live in the kitchen.  We can entertain formally or have a casual football party., Kitchen remodel of 11 year old kitchen.       , Kitchens Design
After endless searches on the Internet I found them and yes, I yelled like a little girl out of joy. My level of excitement went up even more when I found out they do in fact ship to Canada.
Here is the image from Ballard Designs.

Now we just need a new home to put them into. HINT HINT Rob.

Friday, February 19, 2010

A note in the door...

When I got home this afternoon there was a note tucked into our front door. I knew it wasn't a flier or junk so as soon as I was parked in the garage I went to retrieve it. Low and behold, less than 3 hours after drooling over the new tile samples I found, the note was asking if we would be interested in selling our home. Rob has contacted the person that left the note and the next step is having them come by for a viewing. Could this be it? All of the drafting and planing for our next home, is the time finally here?!?! Oh do I hope so!!! Fingers crossed on this one.

Here is one of many photos I am using for inspiration for our next home.

Casual entertaining kitchen

(Image via Southern Living)
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