Literally overnight, they will be standing upright. Just a quick little tip for those who love having real flowers in their house. It's especially convenient for staging house over a period of time. Make those babies last longer!
On the topic of tulips, this is one of my favourite things I inherited from my grandparents. It's a picture of the tulip fields in Lisse, Holland, where my Oma is from, painted on a piece of wood.
Very rad and vintage, if I do say so...
Happy Extended Tulip Loving!
Today was my first experiment with dog treats. We went away for the weekend to see my parents, so I was feeling a little guilty about leaving our boy, Bocephus back home with the other set of grandparents (That's the dog, not the baby, in case of any confusion)
The whole thing was kind of exciting to me, for a few reasons.
A. I love baking, but it never gets eaten, so I know this time around, it'll be eaten for sure!
B. You know those Mason jars of bacon fat that sit under your sink cause you don't know what to do with? Yup, I just used up a good chunk of it! Reuse it, baby!
I know my Oma used to use it in her cooking, which was delicious. But while I really knew she used it, I just pretended to be oblivious to that fact. I don't think I could ever use it in my cooking; I mean it's meat fat that has been sitting under my sink for who knows how long....
Anyways, I had a ton of it just begging to be used for dog treats!
So, I started throwing it all together. With the little dude pulling down my pants. He is now getting really, really busy, as he is officially now walking. Between me pulling my pants back up and helping him walk, I managed to mix together:
Half a jar of bacon fat
Six ice cubes of frozen broccoli and apricot baby food
(I found some at the back of the freezer that needed to get used)
One cup of oats
Two and a half cups of whole wheat flour
**I didn't have any, but next time I'll add an egg and some shaved carrots too.
Then I used my one and only cookie cutter to make the bones. I made them fairly thick because Bo Bo is obviously a pretty decent sized dog, weighing in at 110 pounds!
I originally had them all on one tray, but spaced them out onto two trays after giving my head a shake and actually thinking that one through. Then I baked them for 30 minutes at 180 degrees Celsius, which is also known as 350 Fahrenheit.
Looks like someone might have been jealous! He has been into dog food lately... But unlike what I had posted in a previous post, saying I'd make cookies for Keenan in the shape of dog bones, these cookies really are for the dog.
Happy Dog Days!
Spray Foaming the Basement
This was a pretty big undertaking, and we definitely brought in the professionals for this one. I am positive it has made a HUGE difference. It was worth the investment, and it will reduce our heating bills dramatically. Totally recommend doing this if you can!
One of a houses biggest heat loss is often the windows. Unfortunately, we didn't have it in the budget to replace the windows. Lucky for us, during our pre-assessment, we found out that the windows weren't actually that bad, so I just ripped down the trim, and Adam spray foamed the void around the frame.
It felt a little counterproductive ripping down the perfectly good trim, but from our previous lesson with the front door, I only cried a little ripping it down. There is just something about having the trim down that makes it feel like a construction zone again. Ah well. It's all for a reason! (See my previous post where we replaced our "exterior doors": When One Door Closes... Another One Opens)
Say no to Cracks!
We had a few cracks in the foundation that definitely can't help in the heat loss aspect. So Adam pumped them full of hydraulic cement and fixed that problem. We also used Rustoleum Leak Seal to damp-proof the concrete, even though the Quick Plug Hydraulic Cement is water-proof. One can never be too safe! Just for the record, we used 2 large buckets of the hydraulic cement for our three foundation holes, so if you think this little box fixed our cracks, well, I'm letting you know this is just for touch ups. This wouldn't get you very far. Sorry.
Oh, the work of home ownership! I don't even see a break in sight, let alone the end! Like Adam always says, that's why a mortgage is for 25 years. Maybe in 25 years we'll have it the way we want it. But then again, who wants a 25 year old bathroom? Ah, it really will never end, will it? It's a good thing we actually enjoy it!
Thanks again for reading!
Lately, I've had a slight obsession with jute. I love it. It has such an earthy texture, and it gives off a great beach vibe. Now that it's feeling like summer, what could be better than that?
I first saw a pin on Pinterest that covered an old vase with twine, and thought it looked pretty sweet. So then I, of course, got out the hot glue gun and a roll of jute, and this is what my result was.
For the record, wrapping vases in jute takes way longer than you'd think. 'It's just wrapping a vase with twine', you say? Ya... 2 hours and 5-10 hot glue gun sticks later, it's wrapped! Maybe there is a better way...
Next up, came the pot mats/ coaster things. I'm not 100% sure of the proper name. In this case I'm going to call it a large scale coaster. Adam calls it a center piece cushion.
It's like spatula vs. flipper debate.
Each to their own.
Next, I came up with the very original idea to frame a mirror I had inherited in jute. Then started finding tons of pictures of mirrors framed in jute. So, maybe it wasn't a totally original idea, but one of the mirrors I saw was going for $322. I get that it's the man hours that is what makes it so expensive, but I've got man hours, and I'd rather keep my $322. I'm guessing this cost me about $5 to make. Score! Only downfall? I totally burned myself with the hot glue gun. Again.
Admittedly, I might be going a little jute crazy; now I've covered a few vases, made a bunch of sets of coasters, pot mats, magnets, etc. I've got so many, I should probably start selling them. For less than $322. Stay tuned for an Etsy shop...?
Thanks again for reading! I've been loving the feedback I've been getting; it motivates me to create and write more. So thank you.
Marseille Knot Door Stopper or Bookend design by Twos Company - $45.00
from: Burke Decor LLC
Friday night. 6 o'clock. Most would be celebrating the start of the weekend. Not us!
We're getting half a dump load of top soil dumped on our driveway.
On a whim, I decided I wanted to get the garden in this weekend or sometime during the week. I made these great raised garden beds last week, and with the great weather, I really, really wanted the garden in.
They just looked so naked....
I'm a huge fan of shopping local, but you know your small town stores have some stocking issues when ALL the hardware stores didn't have any six foot- 1x6's. Well, I held to it, and managed to still shop local when I went straight to the source. I hit up one of the local lumber mills in town, and had the owner himself hand bombed the rough cut lumber right into my car. Talk about killer service! Not to mention, it was less than half the price of what I was expecting it to be.
(See my previous post, 'You Aren't Just a Number' at
So the call was made and suddenly, we had dirt on its way. Not sure if I mentioned it was 6 o'clock at night....
We were so not ready for the dirt; we didn't even have the garden beds placed! So we got to work digging out the border and the posts so we could level the beds. Then we laid some filter cloth, which hopefully limits the amount of weeding I'm going to have to do!
We filled the garden beds with about ten wheel barrows full each, and now we are ready
for some serious planting!
So that was great, getting that task crossed off the to do list, but I should have known that half a dump truck load was going to be more than enough for those two little raised garden beds.
Next thing we know, we are levelling out our entire backyard.
The yard was so full of ruts and hills; you'd be walking back from the fire pit, hit a dip and
be face first in the grass. Or I would be anyways.
I'm not the strongest girl in the world, but I do have a 26 pound 11 month old. Rolling a 50 pound tire around our entire yard to level it out, after shovelling half a dump truck load of dirt, was no big deal. Ok, I only did half of a half of a load. Maybe a little less.... But regardless, we got it done!
So, the moral of the story is: yes, we are insane, but it sure feels good to get our home in order.
It's a never ending journey, and a lot of hard work, but I've got great company and help!
I was so sure that we were having a boy, we walked into the maternity ward, saying, "So, if it's a girl, what are we naming her??" And we walked out saying, "Good thing we popped out a boy!" Thinking of some girl names while having contractions wasn't exactly happening.
We had decided on the boys name very early on, so as it played out, I got to use my last name for his first name. I added some whimsy to the ceiling with some painted twigs and pine cones tied up there with fishing line, for a floating effect. Keenan thinks it rocks. I do too.
We bought this leaf from Ikea before Keenan was born, just because its cool. I had a sneaking suspicion that we were having a boy, and even if it was a girl, I'm not the girly type so she wouldn't have been getting a pink frilly room, by any means. The leaf was going in, no matter what gender.
Once again the leaf was inspiration for Keenan's dresser. Originally it was Adam's, and it was perfect for Keenan to work as his dresser and change table. Keenan has a fairly small room so having pieces work as double duty is key. I painted it with Beautitone Cabinet Paint in Sqeezed Limes. If I could go back, I would definitely use a different type of paint. I even sanded and primed this sucker, and it still took me 4 or 5 coats of paint! I lost track after two, and it could probably use one more coat, for good luck. But it does look good, and it's a durable finish, the drawers aren't sticking and peeling off paint, so I guess I can't complain too much. But one coat would have been awesome. Just sayin!
Lastly, we made a growth chart out of our left over wood from the fence. It's nothing fancy, just wood and a sharpie! But it sure is cute, and it's something we can take with us if we ever move. And no marking up walls. I just never could see the point of the writing on the walls.
Adam also made these little boxes with the left over wood from the fence too. All we have in his room is the crib, the dresser and a chair, so it's pretty basic in there. These are nice to add a few decorations on the wall, as there isn't much floor area, and there isn't much space for little things like this anywhere
other than on the wall.
Obviously, I am sure this is a room that will be in constant change, as Keenan grows and tastes change, but for now, I am happy with the way it has turned out. Hope you like it too!
Thanks for reading!
Even though I went to school for architectural technology, I've learned more about houses from my first house designing job and from actually owning a house, than all of school put together.
Funny how experience always wins over training.
And lastly, home is where the heart is.
This old home has been so full of happiness and laughter and love and friendship in the short time we've lived here, and that is thanks to the people that have made this house a home.
A huge shout out to both sets of parents and families, who truly made this adventure possible for us. To Tanya, Patrick and family for the long nights painting, smashing holes in walls, and for everything. To Sandra at RCU, to Zig at Battersby's Plumbing, to Chris at Canyon Electric, to Dale at Big Bend Plumbing and Heating, to John and John at Revelstoke Flooring, to Laurie and Courtney at Expressive Interiors, to Blake at BR Construction, to Connie, to Mike at RockWorx, to Chris and Trap with New Era Insulation, to all our friends, and to anyone else I forgot: Thank you so much! It wouldn't have happened without you all.
Last but not least, thank you to Adam and the Big Guy upstairs for EVERYTHING! I am so lucky and blessed to have such a wonderful life.
Ants on a Blog
By Jena Keenan