"Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take but by the moments that take your breath away?"

Author: Unknown

Sunday, November 08, 2015

Its Finally All Coming Together!

     Things are finally getting put back together. Its taking a lot longer than I expected. I figured....take down a wall....paint a few cabinets....nothing to it. WRONG!
This setion of cabinets still has to have a board across the top joining the two upright cabinets with glass doors and three open shelves between. Then wide crown molding will go across all along the ceiling. These were all some of my original oak cabinets except the base cabinets below the glass front ones. This 7 ft section was built by my husband. He is still working on the drawers for it. This is my favorite section of the new kitchen. I love the lights hitting on the glass fronts.

This is just one of my old bar stools I set in place behind the island until I can find the ones I want. As you can see my husband still needs to finish the doors and drawers in it. This monster is about 4 ft x 8 ft. if you look back through behind the fridge you can get a glimpse of the living room.
He still needs to build the range hood with a shelf on the front and corbels that will go over the stove and hand the 12" cabinet between it and the right window.. Plus wide molding along the base of the island. I havent decided about curtains yet. I think I am leaning to something in grays and yellows. or I might just leave them open. who knows.

Just figured I would give you a sneak peek into how things are looking.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Proven Benefits of a Plant Based Diet

    As you know, I posted back in January of this year that I decided to start eating a vegetarian diet and also started juicing. Juicing was a tremendous help for weight loss and health. It is also extremely hard to start. The first 4-5 days the cravings are awful. Those cravings also prove just how addicting those chemical laden foods are. I juiced off and on for a month and lost about 30 lbs. I would have lost more if I could have been consistent. I also lost about 3 more lbs after that. The first of February I became mostly vegan. The days I dont adhere to it 100% are the days we eat out. Sometimes its can be a little hard at restaurants so I try not to stress about the non meat animal products.
     Since my kitchen has been destroyed (remodeling), so has my diet suffered. Too much fast food, processed foods, sugar and salt also crept back into my diet. I started juicing again for about 3 days and started slipping again. Its just so inconvenient trying to find things, working with minimal counter space etc. Plus the  cravings were horrendous. Which again backs up the addicting effects of all these unhealthy foods.
    While I was eating mostly plant based (especially while juicing ), my knees quit hurting, heart burn stopped, and more energy. Over-all just feeling so much better. The heart burn issue I have had several times a day and night with increasing incidence of reflux since I started having babies. However, while watching my diet it stopped completely. For about 8 months!
    Last night I rolled over in bed, still half asleep and  gastric reflux hit and choked me when I inhaled some. Disgusting I know, but it has to be said.  I have also been having more episodes of heartburn, and a bloated feeling. My knees feel weak and painful. Its not wishful thinking, just a coincidence or anything else. I have proven to myself this works. No question about it. I am still eating vegetarian, but mostly vegan but not  plant based totally. You see, even a twinkie  or an oreo is vegetarian. Potato chips are vegan. NONE of these are Plant Based!
                                                          That's the difference!
                                     I WILL get back on track. I have to!

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Slow but Sure In The Kitchen

  Work is still coming along in the kitchen remodel. Right now we are taking care of little things. Hubby has to finish piecing in some areas of the wood floor. Yesterday, in attempt to save some money, we saved all our antique gold hinges and re-use them. However I wanted a nickle color. This old discolored gold wasnt going to get it. So we strung all 20-30 hinges on a line and spray painted them. The screws I pushed into an old box a window cam in so they stood on end and he sprayed the tops of them. Then yesterday after they dried. We hung some doors. Now its starting to look like a kitchen again.

 It's coming along. I will so be glad when its done.
Oh, I forgot to mention hubby has started building the extra cabinets we need. ALL SOLID OAK.  So much better than the particle board stuff in the store. He is doing a fantastic job. This is his first time building fine cabinets. Wont be his last. Lol.

look how much better they look.
We used a special spray paint by Rustoelum.

Tuesday, September 01, 2015

Still Painting......

    This shellac is some tough stuff. I have to go buy some denatured alcohol. I couldnt get it off. One of these days I may learn to wear gloves. Especially

Monday, August 31, 2015

19 Down...23 more to go..AGGGGHHHH!

    I HATE to paint! I just didnt realize how much ,lol. I would never make a professional house painter. I would be ready to bury my brush after the first side. I counted up I have 42 cabinet doors and drawers to paint, not counting the frames. But hold your horses...that only counts the cabinets we have so far. The originals and the 4 cabinets we have bought. I still have to buy 7 more cabinets.  I worked several hours today and go most of the frames  of the current cabinets primed. Out of the 42 doors and drawers, We have completed 23. ONLY 23! Never again will I agree with my husband about how nice this paint is flowing out the brush strokes. Don't even need to spray them.We can just finish them with a brush and roller.

                 Boy did I get conned into that one,lol. Just like the friends of Tom Sawyer.
                                         He's good! Luckily he has helped me some.

We are priming with Sherwin Williams shellac primer. It does have some odor but nothing overwhelming. Unless you have your head inside a very deep cabinet priming the inside. Then it tends to build up and fill your nose. But it is tough stuff when it dries.  I dont want to be doing this again. I have contacted other bloggers who have used this alkyd paint on their cabinets up to four years ago. All were thrilled with the performance and durability. So thats a good thing.

             Last night we bought some trim to bulk up the bottom of the cabinets. we already had crown molding on the top, but after seeing cabinets done like this in Lowe's and Home Depot, we decided we wanted it too. The thing is, they use special molding. Its not the standard stuff you find on the shelf. so just like when we did the fancy chair rail in our hallway. we went to the store and played around stacking pieces of trim. Like playing with lego blocks in the middle of the aisle.  Finally we decided on a couple of pieces that looked very nice together. The "L" shaped piece underneath, you dont see, but it helps to give you something to fasten the molding to, and something to nail to your cabinet.
Be warned. There are lots of mitered corners to create.
This shows how the two pieces are layered. He glued and nailed the pieces together before cutting miters.
Ta Da! This is how it looks when your done. before painting.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

My Kitchen Is Destroyed!!

   It's true. It's almost completely demolished. My dining room too. Several months ago we had renovated our living room and refinished the solid oak hardwood floors. All of them were needing refinished, but one step at a time. We have wood floors throughout except the bathrooms. We have been putting off the ones in the kitchen and dining room simply because we wanted to update them but just wasnt sure how far we wanted to take it. We had thought about just removing wallpaper in both and just painting for now, but the words of our 33 yr old son kept ringing in my ears since thr last time we renovated the kitchen many years ago. We had a seperate kitchen and dining when we renovated before. And I had always missed my island that we had before. So now we decided to go for it and break down walls.
      We knocked down the two walls dividing these rooms. Removed my kitchen booth, removed wallpaper, and we now have one large room about 20ft x 28ft.

This was our kitchen and dining room before. Nice. I liked the booth. But it needed updated. We are more traditional than country.

This is my handy husband removing the walls. Where the old air conditioner is will soon be a new window to help bring in more natural light.
This is most of the debris.
We are also going to paint our old cabinets a fresh white. And the new cabinets needed will also be painted. After much research, we decided to use Sherwin Williams ProClassic Alkyd paint, and their shellac primer. We are very impressed so far with both. He started out trying to spray the shellac. NOT a good idea. This stuff dries fast and HARD! It started plugging the guns knozzle and the shellac was a bear to get off the gun. As for the paint, I tried it on a small area of a hidden part of my pantry cabinet. When dried for few days  I smeared on some ketchup,grape jelly, and kool-aid to test out its cleanability. I let it dry on for several hours then tried to scrub it. I figured, new paint, I need to be delicate. I soon found out that was false. Now this cabinet had no prep work. No cleaning, sanding or priming yet. This was just a test of your emergency broadcast system. Ooops, sorry. I got sidetracked. Any, I scrubbed with a wet rag and Dawn. It needed some scrubbing to get the dried stuff off, but off it came. It did not damage the paint but I was left with some staining. Now remember this was only one coat smeared on with my finger. So then I took a rag wet it, and added some bleach. The stains wiped right off. More importantly the paint was still not damaged. So it looks like all is a go.
This is how it looks after two coats of primer, sanded,then two coats of paint.

This is how the oak wood grain shows through after two coats of primer.  Its a big difference when you start adding the nice thick paint.
We started out spraying the shelac primer. It worked for a little while then quickly started plugging the gun.
After scrubbing with TSP and a sponge with scotch brite pad on the other side, sanding with power sander, rubbing on a deglosser,and rinsing off, the painting began. After the fiasco with spraying the shellac, we decided to paint everything on with a good roller and foam applicator to get into crevices. So far,so good. Most if the marks from the roller are flowing out as it dries. I am impressed.
   As I started trying to prep the pantry after playing with it, I tried sanding the previous area. It will be hidden, but hubs wanted it all painted anywhere. I tried sanding with a worn piece of 120 sandpaper. And then switched to the scotch brite pad. Nothing happened. No paint came off even tho no prep work was done and it was literally finger painted. Great! I let it go and worked on the rest of the cabinet. This is a 7 ft tall x 22" wide cabinet. The frame is now all primed and we are awaiting lining up more doors to get them started. 
      He also had to patch the wood floor and sheetrock walls and ceilings after removing the old walls. The ceiling got its new coat of paint last night.
Here is our projected floor plan. Notice a nice large island in the center. However, we have decided to turn it parallel with the stove. It will be 40" x 8ft. Also hubby is going to construct a large wood range hood for over the stove. One of these days we will replace the white stove with a stainless steel one. Now we need to decide on a white enameled cast iron sink or a stainless steel one.
More to come on this major renovation so stay tuned.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Whole Food Plant Based Diet

      I commented in my post Vegan For Life, that I had gone vegan and was losing weight. I also noted my weight had been at a standstill for a time. It has now been about 3 months.
BUT in the last few days the weight loss has kicked in again. I have lost about 3 more lbs. a pound and a half yesterday. No changes in my eating, and I have been exercising less due to some fatigue. I have fibromyalgia so that is nothing new. I have read that when these stalls happen early on, that are ody is doing some much needed healing from past abuse. That may be the case. I dont know.
      I also recently read a very good book which helped solidify what I have been reading on this new way of eating.  It is  "Eat To Live" , by Dr. Fuhrman.
                                                   I am NEVER  "dieting" again.

This eating plan means eating plant based whole foods. Eliminating, as much as you can, all processed foods, meat, dairy, refined sugar and refined white grains .  I know...I will now hear......
                                              " But what CAN I Eat?" 
That's an easy one. You can eat a whole variety of dishes made from healthy , wholesome plants from nature. Not whats made in a lab. You can have all kinds of dishes your imagination can dream up. What about a hoagie with marinated mushrooms in place of meat? Smoothies loaded with fruits and veggies. Salads, desserts, many sweetened naturally with dates. We have chocolate milk occasionally, but non dairy Silk Cashew Milk. I make home made non dairy butter, which I seldom use. My husband is still kind of on the fence with a few things. Veggie wraps, soups, and more. No more deprivation, or starving. Eat when you are hungry and eat till you are full. Once you are off the processed junk foods, etc, your body will no longer crave the crap, and reward you with health and vitality.