November 12, 2017:


It's hard to believe, but winter has arrived early in my hometown. One week it was in the 70s and gorgeous outside, the next week it dropped down into the 40s and then boom, less than a week later, into the 30s. We've already had several hard freezes, the earliest that's happened since I moved here in 2014. Anyway, the trees had not even begun to turn color yet in the neighborhood - and now most of them are bare due to the many hard freezes and strong winds that blew most of the days last week. Wowsers! Today, however, the sun stayed out all day, there was no wind to speak of, and the temperatures felt positively balmy outside. I was very glad because I had to be out and about today.

So, the poor trees did not have a "fall" this year but we did get enough rain to ease my mind that my pines and shrubs will have enough moisture in the ground to survive the winter. The squirrels are SO fat and SO furry, I can't help but think they know we're in for a bad winter. Sigh. I'm way behind in everything including lots of garden clean-up that now I won't get to unless we get a few days of "Indian Summer," which doesn't seem likely this year. I did, however, get everything outdoors pretty much put away, except for the area rug (it needs to be "washed" with some soap and rinsed off) and the mosquito net curtains on my Shezebo. Now I'm already thinking about Christmas, and soon it will be here, before we know it! So, I figured it's about time I put up my "autumn" photographs from prior years as the seasonal header here at Maison Newton. Enjoy your Thanksgiving, that will be here soon and then it's into full-tilt Christmas decorating. Take care, everyone!

Monday, March 26, 2012

Inspiration to the Rescue!


Well, I've been picking away at this blasted wallpaper since Friday off and on; 15 minutes here, 15 minutes there, blah blah blah.  I'm to the point where I need to move the bookshelves and entertainment center, and I am really really not ready to do that yet, mentally.


This wallpaper is fighting all the way.  It sure does not want to come off the wall; and in areas, it's taking parts of the wall with it.  Sigh.

I really cannot tackle a wet and scrape job during at night after work.  So, this will have to wait until next weekend.  Meanwhile, I'm picking away here and there trying to get at least the top vinyl part off and even that is proving problematic!

Yeah, I know I know I should have done the slash, spray and scrape thing but ya know - I took wallpaper off before and didn't have to do any of that jazz to get it off. Well, so this room re-do is going to come somewhat harder than I thought.

I am stoked, though, by having ordered my beautiful new area rug (I really shouldn't have spent the money, it's absolutely not in the budget, but I did it anyway), the chair rail and the paintable high relief patterned wallpaper!  The wallpaper has shipped! So has the rug!  That will keep me on track, because I sure won't want them stashed in the garage forever!

To further gird my figurative loins, I just love these rooms:

Suitable title, this photo from Inspiration for Decoration --

Love this room from A Touch of Luxe --

Oh my, and this incredible kitchen that I never expected to find at Decorpad --

I just didn't think of this color combination in connection with a kitchen!  Talk about being blind!

The dark dramatic wall color (described as grey taupe in all three images) -- well, mine isn't exactly "grey" taupe, it's probably got a hint of brown in it rather than grey.  But the white ceilings, white trim and in the top photo, the white lower walls -- exactly what I plan to do in a more modest way in my family room.  My lower walls won't be great built-in casegoods and paneling, but for the first time I'm going to have an honest-to-goddess chair rail that will divide the dark painted upper walls from pristine white lower textured papered walls.

And that glorious kitchen! I have a soffit above my white cabinets just like the one in the photo above -- I have white cabinets (not as fancy, mine are plain-faced melamine). That soffit and the area underneath my kitchen cabinets to the countertops will look fabulous painted the taupe color that I'm going to use in the family room!  I don't have white marble countertops -- mine are black faux granite builder's grade laminate.  Not having a greyish taupe will work to my benefit in the kitchen with those black speckled countertops, me thinks. 

Oooooh, can't wait to paint.  And the wonderful thing about doing the kitchen is -- no wallpaper to remove.  Maybe just a little bit of washing and touch-up priming.  And now I really have an incentive to repaint my cabinet and drawer pulls too...  Already got the paint - hammered oiled bronze.  It will look gorgeous with the taupe paint color I picked out. 

I just love it when a plan comes together - and the original plan didn't even include the kitchen! 


  1. Jan,
    Do you have one of those wallpaper removal tools that has little wheels and big teeth? I use this all the time. You roll it in every direction over the wall paper and sponge with a wet sponge. Let it stand for a few minutes and the paper usually just peels right off. This is what we used to remove the border in our Kitchen last summer and it worked like a charm...

    1. Hi Deb,

      I know the tool but I don't own one. I will check around at the office to see if I can my hands on one to use. I haven't had to use this kind of tool before and I've removed quite a bit of wallpaper in my time in this house! However, I believe I double-glued this wallpaper and that is what is causing the problems. The top border came off pretty easily, leaving behind only a small amount of backing paper and that will roll right off once it's wetted down. If I had done a better job putting this paper up I would have papered right over it; but in some places I had overlapping seams and a little sloppy in places along the wood at the bottom of the wall. At any rate, this will give me an opportunity to finally do the walls the right way -- repair them and give them a really good coat of primer. When I did the walls back in 1990 I was running out of primer and stretched it out as much as I possibly could. Thus, parts of the walls didn't get coated very well. Sigh. Well, live and learn. And I'll get some exercise out of this 'exercise.'