Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Small Bathroom Redo DIY Bathroom Makeover transformation to cute Powder Room

Bathroom destruction feels GOOD.
When we purchased our house 8 years ago, we inherited a pinstriped masculine bathroom. It was located in the basement and was rarely used. Because of the tight space, we even used it less.

I'm quite thrifty when it comes to home remodeling and this bathroom was no exception. I ended up breaking even on the deal. The major expense was the pedestal sink that I purchased at the local Habitat Restore. As luck would have it, a chrome faucet was attached. It was missing one piece and the store manager thought he could dig me up one - and he did! Fortunately, the faucet works perfectly (an unknown at the time of purchase).

Hand peeling wall paper with steam iron and hot wet rags.
It was a tough decision to go with a pedestal sink, given I would forgo cabinet storage space. Once I began pulling out what was currently stashed under the sink, I decided most items could go elsewhere or fit in the medicine cabinet. A pedestal should only be considered if you are not using it as a main bathroom. We chose to transform this small lightly used room into a Powder Room.

Many words come to mind, I'll let u use your imagination.
We installed a retro medicine cabinet over the 1970's sink when we first moved in and it never matched the inherited faux walnut pressboard cabinet and plastic marble sink combo. This unit was the least liked element of the entire house, on the top of my "must go" list. Perfect for someone else, I sold this beauty for $80.00.

Large print plastic beehive faux tiles do not work.
We also had to completely replace the back of the toilet hardware and install a new seal. I'm glad my husband is handy! A plumber is never cheap. I picked up the laminate flooring off Freecycle 5 years ago, so happy to finally see it set in place.

My retro plant stand with mementos.
I sell vintage so was determined to decorate with something in my stash. I discovered two cool trophies my parents were awarded in tournaments from back in the day - a tall brass ping pong trophy of my Dad's and a golf trophy of my Mom's. Dad passed away this year and he would crush anyone that challenged him to ping pong so it was the perfect found item. I did splurge on the shabby blue round plant stand that I picked up at a Roanoke antique store for $22.00. I was not sure it would fit in the tiny space until I decided to go Pedestal.

The Powder Room / Coffee Shop
Anthony and I went through my big closet that holds many framed prints and the last one that we tried worked! I was thrilled to finally find the perfect place for our old Coffee Shop sign! Now we serve coffee in the Powder Room M-F 8-6 and Sat 9-9 (HA).

Given my bad experiences with wallpaper, I did get lazy and mandated that we only peel off 2 of the 4 walls. It works as you don't see it unless you step inside to sit and sip (HA HA).

Now we are motivated to redo the upstairs hallway bathroom, it will require more work as we want to rip out a tub and replace with a tiled shower. I'm afraid we have a few more pressing home projects next in line so this will have to wait until next year.


Saturday, August 12, 2017

Charlottesville Annual 2017 Butterfly Count in Albemarle County Virginia

Butterfly Counters (hat and binoculars required gear)
While Charlottesville made national news due to violence in our lovely historic downtown, I was out participating in the annual North American Butterfly Count for Albemarle County.

You can't help but have a favorite, the Northern Pearly Eye.
Two teams of mainly Virginia Master Naturalists headed out at 10 am to count butterflies. One group was dispatched to Crozet and the other to Kemper Park (the nature trail that traverses up to Monticello). Temperatures were more moderate today, only 90 degrees compared to 97 last year! Getting overheated is to be expected. The day began with fog and light sprinkles of rain but the sun came out and so did the butterflies!

This year our butterfly count was held just north of Kemper Park at the adjacent property, Secluded Farm. It's a lightly hiked area that features big swaths of open meadows and forest land.

The official numbers have not been tabulated but our butterfly sightings were fairly light. The most commonly spotted butterflies were the little Silvery Checkerspot, Skippers, and the black Spicebush Swallowtail.

Spicebush Swallowtail on Thistle flower
It was remarked that the annual count is a favorite event for many of us. Immersed in nature, seeing a variety of native plants, insects, magnificently huge trees, and of course butterflies. There is always something in nature that is totally new. I discovered several plants and shrubs that I had never seen. A Master Naturalist snapped a Spice Bush limb and we all smelled it's lovely scent. Who knew! There were also plenty of unusual Dragonflies lighted on twigs.

Silvery Checkerspot Butterfly

I have to wonder why people can't find something meaningful to do with their time other than spew hate. What a waste of a perfectly beautiful day in Virginia. I'm so fortunate to live in a normally peaceful town that welcomes diversity and has respect for all creatures great and small.

~ Rebecca

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

L L Bean Grand Opening in Charlottesville, Bringing a lot more than just Clothes

The Grand Opening of our own LL Bean store is this weekend, Friday - Sunday, Aug 11 - 13. Operated by the founding family for over 100 years, LL Bean continues to be located in Freeport Maine where it all began. A company that opened with mail order and a motto, “A customer is the most important person ever in this office – in person or by mail.”. The first item LL Bean sold was "the shoe", and this item has become a mascot of sorts. A huge mobile boot has been constructed out of fiberglass that sits on top of a Ford Pickup truck. It's a must see and is currently at the new store during opening weekend events. It's so popular that a second Bootmobile had to be created.

Sneak peak at the NEW store
In 1932 LL Bean published a 52 page catalog and had one store in Freeport Maine. Over the years, outlet stores were opened and even a store in Japan. Thirty retail stores are now open in the US with plans for more to come. An international enterprise because of online ordering but with local roots with store openings, LL Bean has finally made its way to Charlottesville. Open 7 days a week at the Stonefield Shopping Center across the parking lot from Trader Joes. You can also enter the store on Bond Street. Speaking with Eddie Flaherty, LL Bean Marketing Planner and Bootmobile Driver, a staff of 70 has been hired just for Cville.

$5,000 presented to the Girl and Boy Scouts by LL Bean
LL Bean is having a party this weekend and invites the community to attend! Get in line early Friday in order to hopefully snag one of the 200 Gift Cards (worth up to $500) that will be handed out! The store opens at 9 am so the line is bound to start forming early (memories of the Whole Foods store mania comes to mind). Saturday and Sunday from 10 am - 4 pm you can try you hand at fly-casting and archery and Sunday is devoted to KIDS events. The local Boy and Girls Scouts were handed a $5,000.00 donation today during the soft opening and both groups will be present Sunday with hands-on activities and games, along with pets and snacks! While the kids are having fun, the adults can enter the 2018 Trip to Maine giveaway!

Follow the Kayak's on Bond Street
If you have a LL Bean Visa card or purchase one, this gets you an additional 20% OFF your order during the weekend Grand Opening celebration. If you receive their mailer, you can also get a free gift (bring in your mailer).

You may not realize that LL Bean hosts area river events such as kayak tours and seminars. All equipment for trips is provided by LL Bean and instructors are employees of LL Bean. Next year the river locations will be closer to Cville but for now events are hosted in Goochland near the Richmond store.

The Charlottesville store is bright and airy with a variety of traditional LL Bean clothing and shoes with an obvious slant to the outdoors. Kayak and Paddle Boards can be purchased along with tons of camping gear and there is even a pet section. Just about any sort of nature nut gear is available - binoculars, sunglasses, water bottles, fire pits, backpacks, tents, and more. LL Beans traditional lines of canvas products shine in the store - totes, shorts, pants, shoes, and hats.

Pick up the Summer mail order catalog while you are in the store. I love how the catalog format is consistently the same as the years pass. LL Bean's clothing line offers simple timeless traditional style for a wide range of ages. ~ Canvas, Seersucker, Blue Jean, Nautical, Khaki, Tees, Boat Shoes ~ With the same 100 year + guarantee that you are completely happy with your purchase, you can't go wrong with LL Bean.

My mother always ordered us LL Bean coats for Christmas and we still have a set of the traditional Canvas Barn (Field) Coats that look as good as the day they were gifted.

Had the pleasure to meet Eddie the Bootmobile driver
Go see the Bootmobile and say HI to our newest Stonefield Shop!


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