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Back in the day.

South Seattle House Puget Sound Regional Archives
The hizzle! In 1944!

You guys!!! Look at this awesome photo of our house back in 1944 in BOEING HEIGHTS! How cool is this? I love me some local Seattle history and was digging around one day and came across a website that directed me to the Puget Sound Regional Archives.

I sent them my address and a few weeks later, they emailed me back saying they have a photo and a few documents that I could purchase. I called them like 2 seconds later with my credit card – the gal who answered the phone, laughed and said “that was fast!” And ta-da! Our home. We don’t have some crazy, historic home but it was neat to see where it all began.

It looks like the front door location had changed over the years along with the window sizes. And our kitchen used to be a carport of some sorts too. It was converted in 1950 and the half bath was added on in 1962. Gosh, even the detached garage wasn’t built then! Though I suspect once they did those add-ons, the garage came shortly after. And hello, Boeing Heights? I think we need to bring that neighborhood name back. None of this South Beacon Hill crap anymore!

I showed this to my Mom and she said it reminded her of her grandparent’s house, who used to live off of MLK, just a hop skip and a jump from our place. It made me feel all warm and fuzzy knowing that for some reason…like that we’re living in a little piece of the past 🙂

 

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Countertop construction

We’ve been going through some semi-maj repairs around the good ole condo lately to get it all spiffy to rent out. I’ve been wrestling with counter top ideas for the past few months since ours were old and very stained. Every material I looked into was uber expensive and I have HARDLY ANY COUNTER TOP SPACE people. Ugh. I couldn’t justify forking over $1500+ for a rental condo counter top.

Luckily, I came across a photo of butcher block counter tops and liked the look. A few quick Google searches later and I found some decently priced ones thanks to IKEA. I bought two big slabs and spent one weekend treating them with linseed oil. I was told that a few coats of this would make these slabs virtually waterproof. Ummmmm……not so sure about that……water rings are already showing up! A little more high maintenance than I’d like but I think I might be able to fix that with the right stain/oil combo. Stay tuned…..

I was going to subway tile the back splash but my handyman suggested that we just use the leftover butcher block instead. Genius. Those will be installed next week with new tiling in the bathrooms. Man, I love a good home improvement project (that I don’t have to do myself!)

Installed IKEA butcher block countertops - cultivatedrambler.com
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Chomp.

The final product!

 

I thought I would share one of my recent sewing projects that ended up being a holiday gift for my sister’s cat, Tuna. I know, I know….presents for cats……we’re a strange family around here.

I used the same technique as I did for Stella’s quilt, which I made a few months back. I simply picked a few fabrics I liked, the main one being these cartoon sharks, cut them into different sized strips, sewed ’em together, batted the back, quilted a bit, then finished it off with self-binding edges. It’s really so simple 🙂

Things I learned with this project:

When using a fun patterned fabric, be sure to give yourself additional fabric for seam allowances – I lost a few sharks that way because I forgot to calculate the actual sewing part. My bad.

When piecing this bad boy together, I laid out the strips in the order I want them to be then sewed the first and second ones together, third and forth together, and so on. Once those were paired up, I went back and pair them up again…and again….until they were all sewed together. This method helps keep your sewing lines straight and your fabric from going wonky. I found this blog to be helpful!

The top layer is done!

 

Always a fan of pressing the seams.

 

Pin it up, quilt it out.

 

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Fa la la.

My poor faux tree is too mini for our living room. Time for an upgrade!

Just a few holiday updates from your truly! Below, are a few pics of some of our holiday decorations that were put up last weekend. Everything I had from the condo looks uber dinky in our new house so I’ll def be hunting for decor sales after the holiday. A taller faux, flocked tree, sparkly swag and outside lights will top the list – day after Christmas Target shoppers beware! I’ll be throwin’ elbows for those glittery thangs! I’ve also tagged a few interesting craft projects on Pinterest like this and this. Hopefully I can tackle some next fall in time for the 2014 holiday season. JK, I’ve got a wedding to plan….blargh. 


Our yellow front door always looks a bit more festive with a lil somthin’ somethin’

Holiday shopping is well underway in our household. I spent the day after Thanksgiving on the couch, iPad in hand, ordering gifts and most have already come in the mail. And….wait for it….50% are already wrapped and under the tree! I don’t know how I got so ahead with gifts this year – I’m kind of amazed with myself. And most importantly, I have yet to set foot in a mall! (Happy dance.)

I haven’t spent much time in the kitchen lately but am looking forward to cooking a few holiday treats this coming weekend. My first attempt at caramels last year was a success BUT I’ve managed to lose the recipe – WTF? All I have is one picture from the blog, where there’s like 4 sticks of butter and a lot of brown sugar in a large pan. I’m hoping those hints will help me find my killer recipe. UGH. I’m also on the hunt for THE PERFECT holiday cookie to bring to the family party. Not sure exactly what that will be, but they need to look interesting and taste good. I know, I know….I have high standards 🙂

So what are you doing to bring on the holiday cheer this year??

Up close with the ornaments

Can’t forget our Hanukkah entry table!
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