From the Kitchen Counter…

Home Design, Travel, Vintage, Antiques, Flea Markets, Home Renovation, Crockery and Dishes of any sort–writing, wandering and wondering…. I write about them all.

Category: home decor

Of Toilets, Towels and Toaster Strudel …inspiration can come in some unlikely places!

View from: my living room sofa – where I’ve spent an inordinate amount of time of late.

So…. I have been laid up for over a week with an angry sciatic nerve screaming at me louder than a politician’s denial of inappropriate groping. (Geez…did these guys miss that fundamental Kindergarten lesson – “keep your hands to yourself.”??) The culprit for my screaming back I’m sure is the toilet I heaved singlehandedly out of the bathroom of my newest project house because I was too impatient to wait for my big burly crew to arrive.

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All I want for Christmas is….a palm sander??

View of my latest project:

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Mood Reading: zz (had a restless night last night – think the decaf I ordered after dinner wasn’t : (

Hope you all survived a happy holiday season and are on the road to recovery. Around our house it’s always a mad dash to the finish but we managed to pull it together at the very last moment. Seems I’ve got the Dasher part pretty much down, much to my husband’s vexation. Think he prefers more the Prancer and Vixen in me but with my new palm sander, saw horses, fully kitted tool belt, and a gift card to Lowe’s, (all Xmas gifts from the fam) he’s settling for Blitzen for a while!

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As I was saying…


View of my latest project: (Read that: “latest creative distraction”)

Mood Reading: Beginning to look a lot like frazzled…

I know, I know….nothing like popping in on you at the busiest time of year. Especially since it’s been a little while since I last sat down to blog (okay, a BIG while – but what’s a year and half between friends?) But since I was thinking of what I would say in a Xmas card anyway, I thought what the heck – I’ll fire up the ol’ blog and see if she’s still churning!

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Fire Emergency Kit 101 – White Wine for Spritzers is essential.

View From the Patio Weds. Eve:Image 7

Mood Reading: ZZZ’s (now that the embers are out, sleeping much better : ) 

So, there we were on a hot, sultry Wednesday evening this week, preparing dinner as usual with the news on in the background. With temps in the 100’s all week – no air conditioning and humidity hanging thicker than molasses in the normally arid desert, I was more concerned with my now-sticky linen blouse and less-then-alluring hairdo than any forces of nature. As I mindlessly washed the arugula at the kitchen sink, (and dreamed of the downpour that Read the rest of this entry »

As I was saying….

View from the Tuscan Countryside: image As I was saying, (see last blog post), sometimes the things unplanned are the most memorable on a trip like this.  Case in point…we set out this morning to go rent the car that we planned to have for three days of touring through the Tuscan countryside ala Thelma and Louise sans (hopefully) the final cliff scene. Read the rest of this entry »

Sip… Schlep, Sip some more…repeat. Touring Italy (traveling anything but light!)

View from Ponte Vecchio – Florence, Italy: image

Writing this from Siena hotel room – requisite glass of wine within reach, recent acquisitions safe and in one piece.  We’ve been eating, shopping, gawking and sipping our way through Italy. imageSeems ages ago since we were in Venice but it’s only been a week – we’ve covered a lot of ground (and water) in that time. One thing Elaine and I have learned on this trip…virtually every time we have deviated from our oh-so-planned-ahead-itinerary, or happened on a serendipitous conversation with a local, it has led us to a fascinating adventure that can’t be found in Rick Steve’s pages or any other guide book. Read the rest of this entry »

Taking Manhattan By Storm – uh…wait…The Storm That Took Manhattan

View from my niece’s skyscraper office in New York City:

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Mood Reading: ZZZZ’s (slept like a rock last night – still jet lagged so went to bed early and woke up late – after 3 cups of coffee – I’m almost back to my perky little self)


The weather forecast for New York City last week said “cloudy – chance of showers – and clearing by the end of the week”, so when photomy flight from Reno touched down last Tuesday, I wasn’t worried. I’d packed my brolly, had 2 pairs of knee high boots with me and when I got off the plane, the light drizzle was a welcome relief after the Nevada drought I’d just left. Little did I know… I should have packed a snorkel (as my friend Cathy suggested.)

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Ignore the Elephants Honey, Now There’s a Big, Beautiful Piano in My Living Room!

View From The Living Room:

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Mood Reading: ZZZZ’s (slept well last night since I was up the night before – the combination of too much red wine and the light from the blood moon streaming in)

The other evening friends came over for appetizers before we all headed out to dinner. It was the first time my good friend Linda heard the story of my “new” 100 year old piano – though I felt sure I had blogged about it when I first got it over 9 months ago. “No,” she assured me, “this is the first I’ve heard of it – are you sure you blogged about it”. Low and behold, I remembered then what kept me from posting the blog I had written when the coveted instrument arrived – I simply couldn’t remember how to play it! Read the rest of this entry »

From My Kitchen Counter to Yours…

View From The Kitchen Counter:


Mood Reading: ZZZZ (Slept well last night – in the mountains)

So…Another year has passed.  Here it is, already the day after Xmas (Boxing Day as it’s known in some parts) and I woke up this morning thinking …wait, what happened? Did Christmas come and go already?  ButUnknown I’m still digesting my Yuletide pudding… wait — I have another bottle of nog that’s yet to be opened!  And what about those last minute little stocking stuffers I’ve stashed somewhere, hmmm, surely they’re around here somewhere… Read the rest of this entry »

Dinner Guests Are Welcome — Unless They Want Me As The First Course!

View From the Dining Room:

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Mood Reading:  ZZZZ’s (Slept much better than I did on Wednesday night!)

We’ve all had them — the unexpected visitor that suddenly appears just as you’re getting ready to prepare dinner, and seemingly wants to hang around.  My unwanted guest was all the moreimages-3 unwelcome (and creepy) when I realized he’d been silently lurking around the house for some time, retreating into the shadows so I couldn’t see him.  When I finally did notice him,  he tried to skirt the confrontation but alas, it was unavoidable.  When he made his presence known in the middle of my dining room late last Wednesday afternoon, all hell broke loose… Read the rest of this entry »