Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Kitchen Lights

We have new lights in the kitchen! Aren't they lovely?

(Please don't be distracted by the floral wall paper that used to go all the way around the kitchen but I could not stand it anymore and pulled most of it off. This was left because that part of the wall in going to be gone.)

But, back to the lights.

They may not look like much, but that is kind of the point. They are just ordinary, recessed lights from Lowe's that nobody should notice. 

But since you are looking, aren't they great?

We had one pretty lame light fixture on the working side of the kitchen - See it there in the upper left corner?  The one with no shade? 

(I had to replace the light bulb and could not bring myself to put the shade back on. Trust me when I say this looks a million times better.)

Any-who, that was the light we had. 

Hero holds the box for the stuff falling out of the ceiling as the electrician cuts the holes for the new lights.

There is a small light over the sink, but it's pretty useless. We'll get on that one when we bust out that soffit above the cabinets. 
FOTO Pendant lamp IKEA Gives a directed light. Good for lighting dining tables or a bar area.

We are thinking about this cutie pendant light from IKEA for sink lighting.

See what lurks in the ceiling? Insulation. That's a good thing in the ceiling. Not all over the kitchen.

All the goodies from Lowe's to make our kitchen nice and bright. 

All over the kitchen table.

That's okay. Our electrician is awesome and when he was finished, this was nice and clean.

Midway. Four holes with wires from the box ready to go!

Since we took the doors off the upper kitchen cabinets, Hero duck taped a towel over the food cupboard. 

What a smarty!

This was the old switch. (Normally it was on the wall correctly.) This switch with the ancient wiring was disconnected and the new switches moved to a much better location. And now there are two switches - with dimmers - for lots of flexibility in brightness.

And here they are in all their glory. 

Note the little round cover in the center. That will be dry walled when we have more dry walling to do.

What a difference these lights make - In all there nondescript blending-in-ness.

We just love them.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Changes for the Season

We had quite the dilemma this year when decorating our small house for Christmas. 

We have been collecting ornaments, Nativities, greens and other Christmas treasures for years, and for the last six years we have had a big house to decorate, which means we had space to spread out and add to our collection regularly.

And then we started on this new journey to downsize our house and possessions and we sold the big house.

Now that the Christmas season is here, it's time to haul out the several boxes of decorations and ornaments and cover every surface of our house with stuff.

Well, we could have done that, but we chose not to. 

We made the effort to choose our very favorites.

Like these funny little gals. And that little jar of candies. The jar is actually boot shaped and at least 50 years old. I remember as a kid wanting to crack that thing open and scarf up those little balls of sugar. 

They are really sealed up tight to still be hanging around.

For many years I collected Nativites. This one (also pictured at the top) I found at a city garage sale for just a few dollars. It is such a great set.

This little box is another favorite in our house. It has to be at least 60 years old, back when men wore hats and there were hat salesmen. This was a Christmas promotional that has a little hat sample inside.

The little hat always has a place of honor on the tree at the top, near the star.

When we lived in the big house, we cut down the tallest tree we could find at the tree farm. Last year had to be the tallest and biggest ever - about 14 feet tall and a diameter that took up about a quarter of the room. Seriously.

Even at that size, the tree never looked sparsely decorated - We have that many ornaments.

We have almost all of them on our eight foot tree.

I love love antique ornaments. When I see them at garage sales, flea markets and antique malls I have to check them out. I absolutely do not need ONE MORE ORNAMENT, but I can't help it. I don't usually take them home anymore though.

This Silent night ornament is one of my favorites. It has a great patina and the color is amazing.

And I could say that about most of my ornaments.

The basket of Christmas stories under the tree. Love reading to anyone who will listen. Fortunately, my kiddos still listen.

Our little fireplace even got a little Christmas spirit. Hero got these cool string lights that flicker like flames.They are so cool. 

And lighting the fire is super easy.

Another little Nativity.

This one has lots of charm. And very wobbly legs. If the table gets bumped, they go over.

Except for the cow. He sadly has one let shorter than all the rest, so he has a blue sticky tack foot, and now he never falls!

Not very authentic, but works like a charm. 

We resolved the dilemma of decorating without going overboard by leaving some things in the boxes this year. It was fun to look at everything, but then we thoughtfully chose a small part of our collection. 

Next year we will have more area to decorate - hopefully the kitchen will be finished by next Christmas - so we'll keep everything at least until then.

It is a good dilemma to have - lots of lovely choices.