More Light in the Cottage Kitchen

The Cottage kitchen is small but functional.

The Cottage kitchen gets plenty of light during the day due to a window near the sink.

Unfortunately it was more functional during the day than at night.

The area is bright in daylight.
An under-cabinet fluorescent tube lights up the sink area.

Sug went to Home Depot and bought an under-cabinet light much like the one I used to have in my old kitchen.

What small change can make your kitchen more functional?


Uh Oh, No Water

Earlier this week there was a water main break directly in front of our house so we had no water for a few hours. The county crews had it fixed before the end of the day.

Water pipes in the Cottage attic have frozen and broken in the past.

Then tonight Sug came over to say she had no water. We had water; she had none. She checked all the water lines in her attic and found no leaks so we brainstormed as to what could have happened.

Water comes into the Cottage from underground at the front corner.

Since the temperature has been in the single digits we figured something was frozen somewhere.

Sug let her hairdryer run on the part of the pipe where water settles and had apparently frozen.

Sug used her hairdryer to warm up the copper pipes where the water enters the Cottage.

The water flows

Sure enough water started to trickle, then it flowed freely. Yea! Water. YEA!!!!

What would you miss more: water, heat, electricity?

List, 2017: December Plans

How did it get to be the last month of a year already, and 2017 at that.  It’s difficult to make hard plans for December because so many items are already on the calendar.


I’ll be lucky this month to keep the laundry at bay while trying to decorate the house for Christmas.

I think we’ll place the tree, if we get one, in the front living room window.

Hoping to get lots of help in both areas.


I have to execute 3 Christmas services at church.  I’m still working on writing the narration and need to find one more narrator. By the time Christmas Day gets here I’ll be free!


Hoping everyone who attends will go home with a finished wreath.

Wreath making party on the first weekend in December.


We’ll be on a Walk to Bethlehem on Saturday night, December 2.

Charlie’s building fires to keep the walkers warm.

Exterior Outsourcing

While we are going through the holiday decorations maybe I can wean a few away from our collection.

I love these special ornaments from my sister.

We have amassed so many over the past umpteen years that curating is order.


The gym is off the calendar until I’m back to my good old self.

The gym has all sorts of equipment including weights.

Maybe January will prove a better month to actually get things done.

Favorite holiday tradition?

List, 2017: November Progress

November was not as cold as we thought it would be so we did get some projects underway.


The outdoor rug from the second floor master deck was hauled to the grass and cleaned by Sug.


The rug has been cleaned and stored for the winter in the Cottage attic.

Then we wanted to work on interior trim.

We’re getting better at installing baseboard trim.

We made some progress but are not nearly finished.


Total fail — not one sewing project was completed.  Nothing was even started.

The center cushion of the windowseat has never been upholstered like the other two but I have the fabric.

Perhaps January will be a better time to work on sewing projects.  However I have a lot of year-end financial work that keeps me busy and wears me down in January.


We did have game night in November.  It was tons of fun and I’m not sure why we don’t do it more often.

Food for game night was carefully selected not to be messy so the game could continue.

We played “Boxers and Briefs” and “MadGab”.


We did not go to any outside entertainment in November.  We were too busy.

Exterior Outsourcing

Someone might just need this chandelier over their Thanksgiving table.

I was also too busy to relist items on Craigslist.  That task is on-going and can be caught up to date at any time.


I’ve been back at the gym for 2 months riding the recumbent bike.

The gym has all sorts of equipment including weights.

I wanted to up my game by adding weights but (as usual) I got a little respiratory trouble that nixed my gym time for the time being.

Are you holiday decorations up?

The Painted Cross

An iron cross has hung on the Cottage for many years.

An iron cross hung on the Cottage near the front door.

Sug spruced up the paint when she painted the side panels on either side of her front door.

The cross didn’t look right on the shutters.

When we hung shutters on the door panels the cross needed to be moved.

The cross is easy to spray paint.

Sug hung it above the door but the white cross on pale grey was hardly visible so she asked me to repaint it.

Navy blue spray paint needs a few coats to bring out the true color.

I used navy spray paint misted with hammered charcoal metallic to give it a little interest.

The Cross at the Cottage.

Now it hangs more visibly above the door.

Are you changing the color of something?


List, 2017: November Plans

November is a cold month here in Maryland so I’m planning indoor projects.


Much, but not all, of the dirt was removed when we cleaned the rug in spring.

Clean and store for the winter the rug from the master suite deck.

WE should have enough trim on hand to finish the laundry room.

Install interior trim and clear up pile in hallway.


The center cushion of the windowseat has never been upholstered like the other two but I have the fabric.

Work on sewing projects.


I have a cabinet full of party games.

Let’s have a game night in November.


No tickets or events on the schedule for November.

Exterior Outsourcing

Someone might just need this chandelier over their Thanksgiving table.

Relist some large items on Craigslist like saddle, chandelier, Christmas items.


I’ve been back at the gym for a month riding the recumbent bike.

The gym has all sorts of equipment including weights.

Now it’s time to up the game to include some weight lifting.

When do you put up holiday decorations?

List, 2017: October Progress

At the beginning of the month I had made rigorous but reasonable plans for projects I wanted to accomplish.  I’ve been posting updates regularly but here is the summary.


We refinished our king-sized bed frame for the master bedroom.

We started by cutting down the footboard.
The new finish is charcoal grey with a darker drybrush finish.

We cut off the sleigh end on the footboard then painted it.

We’re still working on baseboard trim.

While the bed was pulled away from the wall we installed baseboard trim.


While we were concentrating on projects in the master suite I stained the doors to the closet much like the ones in the conservatory.


Charlie and I have both started working with our Christmas choir.  There are only 8 Sundays left until Christmas eve. Yee ha.


We had no guests at the house. We stayed totally focused on DIY projects.


Charlie, Sug, and I took a day trip to the Statue of Liberty.  It’s as grand as I remember.  My traveling companions were very excited to see this welcoming icon up close.

Lady Liberty

Our tickets were for the crown. We climbed the 146-step spiral staircase. Miss Liberty is fantastic.

Exterior Outsourcing

I listed some old Halloween costumes on Craigslist but was not successful off-loading them.  Maybe next time.

Hoods and leggings are crucial for cool Halloween nights.

It was fun to revisit old photos of our son when he was a little boy.

I cleaned up the old computer.

Time to get rid of this old computer.

It’s been plugged in for years without being used or hardly used.  We have a new set-up now so it is time for this relic to go.

We’re scheduled with Sug’s contractor to install window trim on 3 interior windows in the house.

The master closet window needs a sill and casing then I can hang a curtain.

Two round windows and the window in the master closet are trickier than we think we can manage ourselves.


I’m back at the gym on a regular basis riding the recumbent bike.

I have advanced to level 9.

Maybe next month I’ll add weights.

What’s your plan for November?