Monday, January 31, 2011


This is a one-subject version of my usual long-winded blog. I just had to tell you the bed saga …

I wanted a king-size bed but the trailer bedroom is obviously too small for that to be possible so I settled for a queen size (the same size as the bed in Penny the Pace. We bought the bedstead early last summer for $20. It was an old, miniature version of a maple four-poster. I knew I was going to paint it from the start and we stored it in the bedroom at the trailer until that time arrived.

A few weeks later we were at another garage sale and talking to the folks having the sale about our plans. They asked us if we had found everything we needed and we responded, “Yes, except for a queen-size mattress and box spring.” One couple at the sale offered their queen set to us for free if we could wait for it for a few weeks or a month until they bought their new king-size bed. We were tickled and exchanged phone #’s.

Well as you know, this renovation has taken months longer than we were estimating. When we took possession of the mattress and box spring we put it into storage in Gloria and Les’s basement and just last week, Phil finally moved this huge set to the trailer.

Guess what? It didn’t fit. The bedstead was 76 inches long and the box spring is 79 inches! So, my ingenious hero sawed the rails in half and lengthened the whole thing with 2 X 4’s replacing the 2 X 2’s that were there. He filled in the space created in the rails with 1 X 4 pieces, caulked the seams and repainted the rails. Voila! It worked and my new bed was ready for bedding. I wanted my bed high enough to save my back when changing the bedding or folding clothes so Phil had added 6 inches to the legs with blocks of wood. Well by the time all was said and done, I have a VERY high bed. So high, I need a high stool and even Phil’s feet are a foot from the floor when he sits on the side. It is hysterical but boy is it comfortable. Great granddaughter, Carly calls it the princess bed and I’m trying to decide if I should put a pea under the mattress to see if I can feel it … LOL!

Haven’t decided what kind of closet doors to install and there are still a few things I want to do in the decorating department but we are close … very close to being able to move in. Yahoo!!!

Thanks for stopping by!
Until next time ...

Julie Joy (can't get my signature to print for some reason???)

The windows are clean, the screens are repaired and the storm windows are on waiting for blinds.

Phil painted my $2.50 mirror's frame a flat black (over an ugly brown) and hung it above the newly painted dresser. We didn't realize it had this interesting shape until we masked it off before painting.

A corbel is an architectural bracket or block projecting from a wall and supporting (or appearing to support) a ceiling, beam, or shelf. I found these two at a garage sale ($10/pair) and loved them on sight. I also had the perfect location for them.
Phil will shorten and paint the cords white on the little lamps.

And here it is! Not completely finished but close. I'm thinking about putting tiny lights around the wooden dowel behind the bed. Then I'm thinking maybe greenery ... what do you think?

Also, the bedding is an auction bargain and the color isn't doing anything for me. However, it will do until something better jumps out and grabs. Maybe something with some red in it .... :)!!

Sunday, January 30, 2011


Please pardon the postponement of my blog today. Backroad Chronicles will be published as usual on Monday this week. Please return at your convenience.

New pictures of the mobile home coming up ~~~~

Thanks for stopping by!

Until next time ...

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Well … another week has slipped away but rather than complaining about how slow every thing is moving … I must say now that we are coming down to the wire at the speed of paint drying! Phil has finished painting the bedroom and the "new to us", bedroom furniture has various coats of primer and paint. After the painting is done, all that is left for us to do is clean the windows and put up the storm windows and blinds; clean up the mess and vacuum the carpet; assemble the bedstead and bring in the mattress and box springs then make the bed and we can move in!!! Hurray!

I have been unpacking kitchen boxes and putting things away. Our new cupboards are spacious and I love the brand new smell. Believe it or not, the new pantry is not as big as the one in our "Penny the Pace" but with a little maneuvering around, I found space for everything. We have enjoyed a couple meals at the breakfast bar, nothing fancy but home cooking nonetheless and a pleasant relief from restaurant fare.

After weeks of searching on Craig’s list, we finally found a car for granddaughter, Sara in Centralia; about an hour drive south on I-5. The owner was a mechanic who had taken very good care of it and along with a complete service record; he gave us total disclosure about all the pros and cons of the car. It runs great and is in good condition for a 25-year-old car with 130,000 miles on it (about 5000 miles a year), which is actually half the national average per year. She is a happy young lady and we have now been relieved of the duty of taking and picking her up after work nearly every day, which makes us very happy as well.

We are loving our “Little Sophie” more each day and although she continues to be very jumpy (loud noises still scare her) she is learning to trust us more every day. The housebreaking training is going very well. She is now lasting all night without an incident (on the potty pad) and most of the day she takes care of her business on the many walks when we take her outside. She “tells” us she needs to go out by pacing in front of the door (since she can’t bark or make any noise) and we are learning how really smart she is as time goes on. What a great little dog!

Thank you so much for stopping by!

Until next time …

A beautiful rainbow over the top of a totem pole at Little Creek Casino.

The built in dresser "before" picture.

The built in dresser after renovation and a fresh coat of paint. I love it!

The headboard waiting for the first coat of paint.

Our footboard waiting for the finishing touches.

Granddaughter, Sara and her "New to her" car. She is a very happy girl. It is a 1985 Chevrolet Cavalier. We got it for $650 plus tax and transfer fees. It is a sweet little car.

This is the only "before" picture I have of the perfectly adequate refrigerator we decided to keep rather than buy one to match our new black appliances.
We painted it black with appliance epoxy enamel. It was not easy in the freezing weather, outside in the carport.

This is the after photo. We think it turned out pretty good for our first try at it. Thanks Carol for the idea!

Our little Sophie is out like a light in her Daddy's recliner. She loves her new sleeping pad--a gift from our friends, Ray and Sandy!

Sunday, January 16, 2011


Well, it finally happened! The kitchen cabinets are finished and the fun has begun … HOORAY!!. Can you imagine my relief? My momentum had been brought to a screeching halt for the past couple weeks as I waited for the construction to come to an end. I was beginning to come unraveled and Phil kept saying, “just relax … he will finish when he is ready.” So, the cabinetmaker worked through the night Friday and by Saturday morning he was finished. I think he knew I was at my wits end.

The dishwasher has been working overtime-scrubbing dishes, small appliance parts and pieces as well as pots and pans that have been packed away for months. Deciding what will go where is challenging and unpacking things I haven’t seen for months is like Christmas. When we finish the bedroom we are moving in … finished or not!

It has been a whirlwind week. Last Friday we took granddaughter, Sara on a flying trip down to Centralia to look at a 1986 Chevy Cavalier I found on Craig’s List. For a 25-year old car, it has low mileage (only 130,000 miles) and has had excellent care. After a test drive she put a deposit down on it and we will take her back today to pay the balance and pick it up. The owner wants $750 but he was at work and his wife lowered the price $50 already because Phil had to jump it to start it. The battery had not held the last charge and Sara will have to buy a new one. We will also ask for an additional $50 off because the headliner needs to be reglued and there is a leak above the windshield.

Great Granddaughter, Carly was a participant in the Elk’s Hoop Shoot last weekend. She had a pretty good size rooting section and tried her best but had some bad luck in spite of her greatest effort. We all went out to brunch at Denney’s afterward and we gave her lots of atta-boys for doing her best. She is playing basketball in school this year and loving it.

Our cold weather has warmed up but along with rising temperatures, came the rains. It is supposed to come down like gangbusters for a week or longer. The drive down I-5 to Centralia will no doubt be miserable today. Our “Little Sophie” is getting more comfortable with us every day and she is so good about going potty outside we are very pleased with her progress.

Thank you so much for stopping by!
Until next time …

New sink, faucet and soap dispenser after Phil installed the light under the cabinet. I love this sink and the faucet!

Stove, microwave and new finished cabinets.

North side and breakfast bar of the kitchen with finished cabinets.

West side of the finished kitchen cupboards. Waiting for some additional muscle and the appliance hand truck in order to bring the refrigerator back into the kitchen.

The built in dressing table in our bedroom getting a primer coat of paint. Phil will be painting the drawer fronts red and the top black. Then, we will install new drawer pulls ... haven't purchased them yet.

Great Granddaughter, Carly getting ready to participate in the Elk's Hoop Shoot tournament. She didn't win a trophy but she tried very hard and we all had fun watching her participate.

Practice, practice, practice before the tournament begins.

Check out that form!

This is serious business!

Granddaughter, Sara at about five months along. Isn't she adorable?

Little Sophie getting her tummy rubbed and cuddling in Mama's arms.

Daughter, Bobbie's new flat screen, 42 " TV. She loves it!

Sunday, January 09, 2011


The blog will be short and sweet again this week. We have been totally preoccupied with getting the cabinets and counter tops finished in the kitchen of our “new to us” mobile home. The counter tops are finished and just yesterday, the cabinetmaker began installing the upper cabinets. He needs to build the drawers and finish by installing the hinges and doors, which he has said will be done tomorrow. We shall see … I’m not holding my breath.

Phil and I masked off and painted our old refrigerator out in the carport. It works very well but was an almond color. We scrubbed it, then sanded it and washed it down again. We used black, epoxy appliance spray enamel. There are some boo boos thanks to the cold weather but all in all, it turned out pretty well. Now our appliances will all match. It is still in the carport, inside a black plastic tent that Phil fabricated, with a heater running so the paint can cure.

The bedroom is getting the first coat of paint when Phil manages to get back there in between other chores. It will be white also and the ugly brown paneling is becoming a memory. That stuff is so depressing it is hard to imagine why someone hasn’t painted it before. The white paint just opens up the room and makes it seem half again bigger!

Update on our friend, Les: He is home and doing much better! Still a ways away from walking unassisted as yet but he is definitely seeing light at the end of the tunnel.

Thanks for stopping by!
Until next time ...

First coat of white paint going on in the bedroom.

Laminate being installed in the kitchen. The sink will go in the corner.

Virgil, our dear friend and laminate installer putting the top on the breakfast bar. He did a fabulous job.

Phil installing the dishwasher.

Daughter, Bobbie's "Big Sophie" and her great big boy, "Kitters" getting their evening treat. It took a while but they have become friends.

"Little Sophie" says ...
Oh oh! Am I supposed to be up here on the bed?

"Oh boy! That electric blanket is A-OK mama!"

Sunday, January 02, 2011


Not much to blog about this week but as you all know, I am never at a loss for words. Our friend Les was released from the hospital and will be receiving home health care after a few days in one of the local rehab centers. He will be getting around on crutches and they will give him an intravenous injection of antibiotics every six hours for 12 weeks. If the infection is gone by then, they will have saved his foot. If not, more drastic measures will be needed. He told us he can’t wait to sleep in his own bed (I know the feeling) and watch a TV he can actually see. Please send good thoughts his way and I’m sure he would be grateful for your prayers as well.

Our laminate man worked six hours on Friday putting in the base for our new counter tops that he will install on Monday. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the look so far. Can’t wait to see it when he is done. After Monday … the cabinetmaker is behind the 8-ball. Phil is going to insist on a finish date. If we weren’t worried about losing the money we have paid so far I think he would threaten him with discounting XYZ dollars for every day he goes past the deadline. Of course, in actuality, we won’t do anything except make sure we never recommend him for cabinetwork in the future. That is too bad because he is very good at what he does … if you can just get him to do it!

As you know from last week’s blog, we had our wonderful great granddaughter Carly with us beginning on Christmas Day afternoon. She went home on Thursday and while she was with us she was a big help getting our bedroom ready for Phil to start painting, which he began on Friday. I was busy for a couple afternoons doing laundry and cleaning up after the laminate man inside (he told me not to. but I can’t help myself – it really bothers me to see sawdust on my new vinyl floor) as well as the birds we feed, outside. They are SO messy but I can’t stop feeding them now. They flock to our feeders every day and hang out by the dozens in our Camellia bush out front. They are so cute and so hungry this time of year.

We went to Home Depot in Olympia on Saturday and purchased our new sink faucet, the soap dispenser, two new sink strainers (the sink was used so it didn’t have any), more shelving for our closet, the sink drain kits and a few other things I can’t remember right now. Our laminate man said he would help Phil install the sink on Monday and I am so excited! It has been a long time coming!!
Thanks for stopping by!
Until next time ...

Brrrrrr! Looks cold doesn't it?
Guess what? IT IS!!!

A beautiful sunny day hovering around freezing in western Washington. That is heavy frost along side the road ... even though it looks like snow.

The snow covered Olympic Mountains peeking through the trees as we head north on US 101 just west of Shelton.

White clouds in a sunny blue sky on US 101 heading SE to Olympia from Shelton.
Very chilly but it sure was pretty!