Entries from January 31st, 2013

The Day I Finally Broke Down and Bought a New Dishwasher

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31.1.13

Hi, I’m Back! Whatever I had kicked my butt. I felt like I just needed to crawl into a ball and take a nap. So so happy to be back in the land of the living.

Pellet-Stove

There are certain days when being a homeowner feels like one of the best decisions you ever made. For us Sunday was not one of those days. It all started out like any other morning.Nik and I woke up made a pot of coffee and turned on the fireplace.

We have a pellet stove insert in our fireplace which uses small wooden pellets that drop from a hopper in the top of the fireplace to a small pot where they burn and produce heat. It turns on with the flip of a switch and can almost heat our entire house. We rarely use our home’s heating system except at night in the bedrooms. It also has a fully closed front so when the stove is on you can’t get near the flames.

Anyway back to the story, we turned on the fireplace as usual and went about or business, made coffee, emptied the dishwasher. Fifteen minutes later I went back in the living room. Smoke began billowing out the heat vents…Rut Row, that doesn’t look good.

I turned it off, took a look and thought I saw the problem. The hopper was releasing the pellets too fast and it couldn’t catch fire. I adjusted, turned it back on….and BOOM. It puffed a cloud of soot and smoke into the living room the likes I had never seen.

Bryan…Bryan…BRYAN!

He must have sensed the house is on fire panic in my voice, because he got out of bed and appeared in the living room quicker than I thought possible. The smoke continued to billow out of the stove, pouring into the living room. We opened all the windows and doors to let the smoke out of the house. It was 7:30 am and about 20 degrees outside.

Fixing-the-Pellet-Stove

A few hours later after the smoked cleared, the stove cooled down and the house warmed up they pulled the entire it out of the wall. It’s an insert which means it sits inside the existing fireplace opening. It can be pulled out but it’s HEAVY and not that much fun to do. They got to work fixing it and saw that soot had accumulated in the vent pipe preventing proper airflow.

I bet you’re wondering what all of this has to do with a new dishwasher.

Leaky-Dishwasher

While they were working I finally got around to finishing up that load of dishes. I have a love hate relationship with our dishwasher. It’s old and needs to be replaced, but technically it’s still going strong so other things get fixed and replace as the loud clunky dishwasher keeps chugging along. Until that very morning when I turned it on and the water began pouring out of the door. It was a FLOOD. Eight towels later and me erupting into a fit of laughter because there was nothing to do about it. We figured out something had clogged the drain.

Now four hours after the fact. The house stilled had a faint odor of smoke, the floors were covered in soot and the kitchen floor was flooded I had had it.

Dishwasher

I did what any rationale person would do. Fed up and tired I looked online to make a giant impulse purchase. First I tried Lowes, no luck, everything was too expensive or downright ugly. Then I tried Sears and found this beauty of a dishwasher. It had all the things we were looking for. It was stainless steal, sleek looking with top panel controls. It had good reviews and a great price. I yelled to Bryan “I found a new dishwasher, it’s $399.” He yelled back buy it I’m sick of fixing stuff, and that’s how I finally broke down and bought a new dishwasher. It should be here in about 2 weeks. I can’t wait and neither can my dish pan hands!

New Blog Look

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28.1.13

January is all about reorganizing and cleaning out the old to make way for the new. Well around here that extended to the blog. OurLakeLife Screenshot

I dusted off the old blog and updated the look a bit. It’s still a 3 column layout but all of the content is on the left and 2 sidebars live on the right.

New Blog Look

I bought the theme from Blog Milk and loaded it up over the weekend. They have seriously gorgeous blog templates for anyone looking for a fresh new look. I’m still playing around with a few things. The sidebars may change around a bit over the next few weeks as I add some favorite posts buttons, tweak our logo and maybe add a blog roll.

Does anyone else miss blog rolls? I do! It seems like a lot of blogs no longer have them. I used to find all my best blogs that way.

Well that’s all for me on a Monday. I have a doosey of a story for you tomorrow. Here’s a hint,it involves multiple exploding appliance. Oi!

Casual and In-Style

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25.1.13

Happy Friday Friends! What are you all doing this weekend? The Sickies have hit our house. Nik has had a slight fever so there will probably be a lot of cartoon watching, soup eating and negotiating to get him to take his medicine. I’m not above a bribe or two. Hopefully during all that I’ll be able to sneak in a project or two.

Since coming to the realization that my wardrobe is non-existent, I’ve been keeping an eye out for great clothing ideas. So far my favorite places to find outfit inspiration are Pinterest (of course) I’ve been pinning to my Fashion board a lot.  I also like to read fashion blogs and Polyvore is another favorite.

Outfit-1-25-2013

Sometimes though the outfits are awesome but the price tags are out of control. Like $750 bags and $300 jeans…yeah, not going to happen. I found this board and tweaked it to make it my own.

This sweater is great and versatile, I love the color and I can see myself wearing it into Spring instead of a jacket.

This plain t-shirt from JCrew is a great buy on sale. When getting dressed always seem to forget the jewelry I think it really finishes and outfit so I want to start wearing it more. The necklace, bracelet and earrings could work well with a bunch of outfits.

These boots are great, wedges are my favorite because you can wear a heal while still being relatively comfortable I need to snag these while they’re on sale.

I actually have this pair of jeans and love them. They go on sale a few times a year which make them a good deal to look out for.

Finally the python bag is A-MAZE-ING I need it like now.

Well I’m off for the weekend, but before I do let’s talk fashion. Does anyone have any tips they’d like to share? What are your favorite stores? Where do you go for outfit pics, any favorite fashion blogs? Tell me in the comments I’d love to hear.

in addition to the sponsor section, our lake life sometimes contains affiliate links. what this means is that if you make a purchase from one of these links our lake life may receive a commission on the sale of the product. all of the content i share here is what i genuinely like and is not influenced by any other manner. by purchasing through our lake life you are supporting the time it takes to bring you great ideas and products.

A Love Note (cough) to January

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24.1.13

Winter-on-The-Lake Ahhh January is really rearing it’s ugly head  this week. I get it, its a cold, cold month. My nose and toes tell me so by freezing as soon as I walk outside. I woke up this morning and the thermometer read  ZERO degrees. I was hoping it was broken so I brought it inside…it wasn’t broken.

Other than the obvious issues I have with the cold there’s also an uncanny way that January has of making the walls in my house appear to grow  smaller by the day.

Winter-Blues

The claustrophobia I’m feeling probably has something to do with the heaps of blankets strewn on the couch and the growing pile of toys accumulating on the Living Room floor.

We’ve played cars more times than I can count and have probably watched a few too many cartoons.

Playing-Cars

Last year Nikolas seemed to take the cold weather in stride. He didn’t much care if we were cooped up inside all day. This year cabin fever has struck the whole family,

Winter-Activities

I’m running out of ideas!

Choosing Paint for the Living Room

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23.1.13

Well, we don’t have a color choices for the Living Rooms walls yet but we do have paint swatches! Where are those HGTV helper bees fixing things up in the background when you need them?

Paint-Swatches 

After our conversation yesterday about white paint Bryan and I ran out to the paint store to get a few samples. While we were there our conversation went something like this:

Me “Hun, which paint chip do you like?”

Bryan “They’re both white”

Me “Yes I know they’re both white but some are warmer and some are cooler”

Bryan “I’m not totally convinced  there’s a big difference”

That conversation basically gave me all the go-ahead I needed to pick out 4 whites without much more input and bring them home so I could test them out in the space. Sometimes you just need to bring them home to really see how they’ll work.

Lake-House-New-Living-Room For those of you would like a refresher here’s a recent wide angle view of how the Living Room looks now after completing our first project of the new year when we rearranged the furniture

Some of the whites are warmer and others are on the cooler side. They are all by Benjamin Moore. Painted in order from top to bottom they’re Frostine, Vapor, Decorators White, and Paper White.  So far I think our room may be able to handle a cooler shade since it’s a Southwest facing room which tends to get a ton of sun during the day.

Paint-Swatches-with-Names

When we got home I painted the white samples on the wall along with 4 other samples of grays that my sister had brought over for me a while back. Thos samples are also by Benjamin Moore so I could see the difference and help with the decision making process.

It’s a little hard to photograph the difference in the whites since it’s a subtle but noticeable in color change in person. I tried to get it in the truest light which meant leaving the shades mostly closed causing a slightly blurry picture.

So far Bryan likes the grays which I’m ok with but something keeps drawing me to white walls. He’s worried that the trim will disappear if it’s white walls and white trim, something I’d be willing to fix with painted gray trim.

I could even be persuaded to paint the doors black to give it a little drama and contrast. I have a feeling these paint swatches could be up for a while before I make a decision.

Can you tell what my favorites are? Anybody else have paint swatches on their walls for ages?

Please tell me I’m not the only one!

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