Thursday, January 24, 2013

So, a Mantle, a Blanket, and some Cookies walk into a bar.....

The time had come again to make some more decisions, and so we needed to decide what to do with the fireplace.
We chose some natural slate for the surround and hearth, so with that in mind we had to figure out what to do for the mantle.  Normally I wouldn't have thought much about this: what ever works will work was my motto.
But I was wrong.  Nothing in store would fit as they were for smaller areas and it became apparent very fast that this thing was going to have to be custom made.  Not good at all when all of the husband's tools were tucked neatly away in storage.  It was looking like we were going to have to spend extra money hiring out what we could have done ourselves, and that wasn't sitting well with either of us.  Please, I thought, not over budget on this.
As a last resort we stopped in at Windsor Plywood.

 And what we found was perfect and gorgeous.
A huge slab of partially rotted Maple called "Spalted Maple"; which basically means it was salvaged just as it was in the beginning stages of rot.  This gives the wood a beautiful variation that looks like marble.  After it is smoothed and varathaned it will have depth and a multitude of rich coloring.
So we bought it and brought it home.  And being as we will be finishing it we will leave a stamp of ourselves in the new house.
The builder is making us a custom box the will be recessed above the mantle into the wall under the TV.  The Blu Ray and reciever and XBox will reside there; he is intalling a plug at the back as well so that the only cord that will need to be fished up the back via a tube in the wall will be the HDMI cord for the TV.  Slick.
We will have the same set up upstairs as well; a pvc pipe in the wall with an opening in the drywall at the top and bottom of the pipe will make hiding wires a breeze.  And cords are my bane: I hate a spiderweb mess of cords in viewing sight.

This raw, or "live" edge will face out into the family room.

I'm in love with this piece of wood; and the smell is amazing too.

We also were waiting for the entertainment unit we wanted for the new house to come on sale.  When the flier came out Friday and we saw it was on sale we quickly put our previous fireplace on Facebook to sell and picked up the new one (thank you, Canadian Tire money).  It sold in an hour with 9 people in queue waiting for a chance that the one first in line would somehow back out.  She didn't, and came to pick it up and Mike put together the new one.

It does look like a nice piece of furniture; love the rounded edges.
It is much lower, which was the reason for selling the one we had: our new living room will force us to put the couches facing each other, making us look way to far up to watch the TV.  Solution: shorter unit, and problem solved.

One of the faucets came this week: a beautiful heavy oil rubbed bronze tap for the bar.  I got it off of Ebay for 50 dollars.  New it retails in stores for 170.00.  Now that's bargain hunting!
We are still waiting for the four bathroom ones to arrive: in store they are 149.99, and I got them on Ebay for 90/piece, shipping included in that price.  The shipping was atrocious for those; almost 200.00 to ship them all.  But as the taps were 50 per tap, the seller gave me a deal on the shipping and combined an offer of 90 per tap with shipping included.  Win win all around!

Snow boarding Club 2013
The kids are liking their weekend excursions to Mount Joy for snowboarding.  They are learning alot, and we go on Saturdays.  It's fun to watch them, although mastering the tow rope is a work in progress!

This past weekend it was too cold to do much of anything, so I finished hemming up the super long strips (two king sized sheets ripped into strips and sewn together end to end) that make up the ruffles for Jacelyn's throw for the foot of her bed.  Pictures of that project to come!  Then I switched to a project I've been dying to make: a raggy quilt done in stripes this time rather than squares.
It turned out really good! It went together in four hours total, minus the strip cutting I had done a few weeks before.  I used quilter's flannel and a heavy quilt batting in between the flannel.  I chose colors that complemented each other in various patterns and that will match the decor of the new house.  In fact, I even snuggled under it the other night!  It's a twin size, which is great for snuggling in with all the corners tucked under me; there's nothing worse that cuddling under a blanket and feeling a draft on my feet. :)
The weekend even had time left over for goodie making: Banana Wheat Germ Muffins, Chocolate Chip Cookies, and some Jam Jams!!

Gramma's Jam Jams

1 c br sugar
1 c unsalted butter, softened
3/4 c corn syrup
2 tsp vanilla
3 1/2 c flour
2 tsp b soda
2 eggs

Cream sugar and butter; add eggs one at a time.  Then add syrup and vanilla.
Stir in the dry ingredients.
Place batter into large zip lock bag and pipe out a large tablespoon of dough.  (I like to do this as it's super fast, but you can also put the batter in the fridge to firm up then roll dough into balls)
Place fingers into flour then press down the dough a bit to flatten into circles.
Bake at 325 for 10-12 minutes.
Spread with favorite jam and press two together.

So super soft and yummy.  They were gone by Tuesday.


  1. I love the blanket and the mantle wood. Great find/sewing job.

  2. Lol thanks alot! I love to make blankets but don't do them very often; like once every three years. The last time I made one it was for my sister and it's a queen sized raggy quilt with two layers of batting in between the flannel. It was so huge and heavy it almost turned me off quilt making. :)