Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Art in the Kitchen

We finally added artwork to our newly remodeled kitchen and I must say . . . we're in love!
Here's a refresher of what the kitchen looked like when we bought our house.


The triptych is a photo of our favorite beach stretched out across three canvases.
Here's a before & after shot of the other side of the kitchen.
And a few more pics . . .

If you want to see more about our kitchen remodel, click here.
We have some fun holiday projects that we'll be sharing with you over the next 2 weeks. We've been busy!

Thursday, November 15, 2012


It's a busy time in our house. After returning from Hawaii, the holiday season arrived. It sure snuck up on us! Joe has been busy in the backyard . . .
Building a shed . . . or maybe a Man Cave.

I think the "shed" may be as large as the room we use as an office.

And I'm a little bit jealous.

Especially now that it has a skylight. Really, is a skylight necessary for a shed?

While Joe has been busy building his "shed", I've been busy "Fallifying" our house. Is that a word? It is now.

After making some gourd garland, I added the burlap wreath I made, tossed a few other decorative items out there and called it a day.

Between holiday parties, Christmas shopping and playing hostess, I know things are about to get crazy. Any tips on staying stress free during the holiday season?

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Fall Trip Time

I took a short (okay, not so short) break from blogging duties while we were basking in the Hawaii sun. But, I'm back now and ready to share some Fall inspired projects with you. So, stay tuned!

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Savor Fall: 20 Things I Love About Fall

To kick off our Fall Series, here are the Top 20 Things I Love About Fall.

1. The Changing Leaves.

2. Decorating with Nature. Fall is the perfect time to use Nature's Bounty as a decor source. Bring a beautiful branch inside or place a bundle of leaves in a vase. Use what you've got!


3. Fall Produce. Celebrate the Fall Harvest by having a Harvest Celebration!
Need recipe ideas? Click here.
3. The Anticipation of the Holidays.

4. Bundling up! In our area, the weather stays pretty warm through the Fall, but we do have a few days where we get to bring out our sweaters and scarves to bundle up.


5. DIY Projects. Every Fall I get bitten by the DIY bug and I feel more crafty than usual. I'll be busy making wreaths, decorating our yard and dreaming up new tablescapes.

6. Fall Picnics. Sure, most people picnic in the Summer, but we are of the lucky few! We picnic at local wineries throughout Fall. And we love every moment of it!

7. Fall Cocktails. We enjoy Spiced Cider, Mulled Wine and Hot Cocoa. There's nothing better than curling up with a book or a good movie and enjoying a festive drink!

8. The Parties! Harvest Celebrations, Halloween Parties, Thanksgiving and even Friendsgiving.

9. Apple Picking. Make it a day! Pack a picnic, pick some apples, then go home and try every apple recipe you can think of!

10. Boots. I can't be the only one that looks forward to wearing boots. My feet are always cold!

11. Oktoberfest. Need I say more?

12. Carving Pumpkins.


13. Hearty Soups. I always use my Slow Cooker during this time of year. Soups, stews and chili are all staples in our house during Autumn. And I make a mean chili!

14. Football.

15. Planting bulbs for Spring. This year, we'll be planting Aliums and Tulips.

16. Caramel Apples. YUM!


17. Our Anniversary. We got married on September 29th because we love Fall and wanted another reason to celebrate Autumn every year.

18. Thanksgiving.

19. Planning Black Friday Shopping.
Here are my tips.

20. Spending Time with family.

What are your favorite things aboout Fall?

Linking up to The Inspired Room's 5th Annual Fall Nesting party.


Savor Fall!

We're starting a Fall Series here at Our Fine House.
Savor Fall!
Because this is our favorite season, we will be posting about a variety of Fall related topics throughout October and November.
Please join us as we Savor the Season!

October 1st: 20 Things I Love About Fall
We're linking up to The Inspired Room's 5th Annual Fall Nesting Series.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Top 5 Things I Will Miss About Summer

I'm always sad when Summer ends. This year, I'm particularly dissapointed since I feel like we missed out on quite a few of our normal Summer activities. This Summer was so busy for us that we blinked and missed it! Luckily, we live in California, where Autumn is beautiful and usually has pretty nice weather. Even so, here are the Top 5 things that I will miss about the beautiful Summer weather . . .
1. Summer Nights. We entertain a lot and it's so nice when we can sit outside for hours, drinking wine and playing games. Whether we are in our pool, our hot tub, or lounging on the patio, we always enjoy our time spent outside on warm Summer nights.
2. Heirloom Tomatoes. Really, I can't think of a better Summer treat. In salads or on their own, I crave Heirloom Tomatoes in the Summertime.

3. Beach Days! Lazy days spent on the beach is something that I look forward to every single Summer.

4. Summer Picnics. Yes, my favorite Summer activity. Anytime we have a free day, I suggest having a picnic. A bottle of wine, fresh Summer produce, some cheese and a baguette. Along with a great picnic blanket and some music, what's not to love?

5. Summer Soirees. A Summer party is a party I want to be invited to! Cocktail parties, weddings, pool parties, impromptu dinner parties . . . they all sound good to me!
What is your favorite thing about Summer? What will you miss the most? And what will you not miss at all?
Please click on the photos to be taken to the original source.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Bug Hotels

When I opened the latest issue of Sunset Magazine, I was surprised to find a whole spread on Bug Hotels. A Bug Hotel sure sounds like a place that you don't want to visit, right? Well, it's actually not a seedy motel room with weird stains on the comforter, it's a home for friendly insects in your garden. Bug Hotels offer shelter and food for beetles, spiders and solitary bees.  
This framed bug hotel looks like a piece of art, but with all of the different sized holes and the stacked wood, it provides a great resting place for carpenter bees and various types of beetles.
This slice of wood is a great place for bees to stop and rest while out gathering nectar and pollen, (and pollinating your plants!)

Stacked sticks and branches offer a great home for beetles and spiders. Though spiders and beetles are creepy and crawly, they help keep mosquitoes in check.

Adding yarn to the mix gives your neighborhood birds material for their nests.
Because I'm always searching for ways to improve our garden, I'm anxious to create some of these beauties myself. Any other ideas on ways to make a garden more inviting for friendly insects?

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Our Kitchen Reveal!

It's been way too long since we've updated the good ol' blog. But now, we're back on the horse and you can expect many updates and fun posts about projects that we've been working on around the house.
Finally, we are excited to show you our completed kitchen . . .
With all new walnut cabinets, granite countertops and stainless steel appliances, she's lookin' pretty good!

We have so much lighting going on in this room, I'm not sure where to begin. We have all new recessed lighting, under cabinet lighting, in cabinet lighting and a lovely chandelier over the sink.

And did I mention the skylight?

The travertine flooring turned out better than I thought it would. Point for Joe.

I love this little nook. It serves as our command central, though you can't really see it in this photo. All of our day-to-day items are kept in the top drawer. I'm sure it will turn into a junk drawer in no time.

This chandelier pendant is really beautiful and I've got to find a better way to get a shot of it in all it's glory.

The eat-in section of our kitchen now has a comfy settee that is full of soft pillows. The glass table is a temporary item, while I search for the perfect piece. The chairs were a fabulous find at TJ Maxx. They were on sale and we negotiated a bit to get them each for $50 a pop. I had seen similar chairs for about $200 in other stores.

We added cabinets to our pony wall. All of the appliances that we don't use on a daily basis are kept in there. Also, the granite top serves as a place for Zoey the Cat to rule her empire.

And yes, as soon as someone heard the camera, he made sure to get some face time.

Our new refrigerator is one of my favorite items in the room. The top drawer is for fresh produce and the bottom drawer is a freezer with separate compartments and drawers. So easy to keep organized!

I made the curtains from fabric I bought on I love their selection!

And the pillows were also made from fabric purchased at Luckily, my mom gave me a hand with the pillows, or I would still be sewing them. Thanks, mom!

So, just to remind you, here is a shot of our kitchen when we first bought our house . . .

Not pretty . . .

And here it is now that we've remodeled . . .
We still need to hang artwork, but we're pretty happy with it for now.

We'll be posting more details about the remodel over the next few weeks. And we have a few more "Before & After" shots to show you of other rooms in our house that we've been working on. We've been busy!