Saturday, November 8, 2014


Well, our latest adventure is MOLD in the bedroom closet.  Tim was putting away some laundry, and found the back wall of the closet black with mold.  Contractor was able to come in a few days to look, and determined the entire back of the wall of the closet was rotted through to the outside, only the vinyl siding and drywall were holding things in place.

Here are some pictures:

Demolition - you can see white exterior framing, and the black is mold of wood and on the cinderblock chimney (the water leaked behind the chimney).

Floor was rotted out too, all of the sills on the baseplate are rotted gone.

What used to be our bedroom!
So Vic brought another guy and his son to help, and they took down the cinderblock chimney and all the rest of the rotted stuff, then started rebuilding, making it weather tight until he could come back.
Staging was required!

Roof was rotted out too, the roof rafters didn't exist at the wall end, they were all rotted gone.

Rubble, Rubble!  Debris from the cinderblock chimney.

Framed in and pretty weather tight (at least, tight enough to last for a few days of rain expected).  It came through the rain with no issues!.

Outside is finished at least for the winter (only chages may be some cosmetic, color on the roof patch).

Now we talk to Vic about when he can come back and finish the inside work.  He'll insulate/finish the closet, and will repair/patch any wall issues in the entire bedroom. 

We've ordered new carpet for bedroom, upstairs hallway, and stairs.  Nice 8 lb. pad, with antimicrobial finish (best for pets). 

We're also painting the bedroom, the wall with the bed will be a darker accent wall, and the rest of the room much lighter.  I'm leaning towards a darker calm blue, very different than the upstairs bathroom.  I haven't yet picked a color, but am sampling several on the walls. 

Tim is also going to get the under bed dressers we've been wanting for a while.

We won't likely get the headboard from this site, but I really like something like this in a light wood:

So, we have lots of changing coming up for the bedroom, might as well get it as we want it, because it's unlikely to get changed for another 20 years.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Twice Baked Potatoes

Here are some Twice Baked Potatoes that I made for when Tim's guy friends came over last weekend; they were a BIG hit.  Also, I figured since I was making these already, I'd make extra to put into the freezer for later.

Pioneer Woman calls them Fluffy New Potatoes.

After freezing, to reheat, throw them into a 350 degree oven until they are hot.

The BEST Thin Crust Pizza (made at home!)

This recipe is from Cooks Illustrated, and it's the BEST thin crust pizza recipe that I've ever made!  Also, this is the best pizza sauce recipe for any type of pizza.

If you can't access the recipe and want it, let me know, I have a PDF I made for us.

If you like really good thin crust pizza, follow this recipe to the LETTER and it will be good; if you have a pizza stone and an oven that goes to 550 degrees, it will be even better!  This means that you must make the dough at least 24 hours in advance, and you MUST boil the pepperoni and sausage toppings; this gets rid of the grease, and means your pizza won't be greasy.

This dough recipe makes 2 14" pizzas.  We make one that size, then take the other half of the dough and divide it into 4; then make 4 personal pizza sized, freeze them flat and wrap them up to use as frozen pizzas for the future.

One thing, if you want to freeze these pizzas raw to cook later, you must blind bake the pizza crust for about 4-5 minutes, then let them cool, before you put on the toppings.

Cooks Illustrated Thin Crust Pizza

Salted Caramel Apple Hand Pies

I thought this was a recipe from Pioneer Woman but I couldn't find it on her website.  But I found this recipe, which may be what I used.  I know that these were pretty easy, and also really good!  The dough was really easy to make, but leave time for chilling it, otherwise these are a snap to make. 

Salted Caramel Apple Hand Pies

Granny Smith apples, chopped into 1/4" dice
store bought caramels, cut into tiny cubes
pie crust
sea salt

Peach Blueberry Crisp

This was so good that I made it twice!  First time, I made a double recipe and put into a 9 X 13 pan, second time I made the regular recipe and put into an 8 X 8 pan.

This has to be the best summer fruit dessert I've ever made or eaten!

Recipe from Cooks Illustrated:  Peach Blueberry Crisp

Simply peaches, blueberries, a little sugar, then the topping has pecans and brown suger (with some butter to hold it together).  Totally delicious!

Mary Poppins Cookies

People ask me why these are called Mary Poppins Cookies - I don't know, that's the name on the recipe card!  I know we got this recipe from someone in Osceola, IA, but don't know from whom.
Ingredients - yes, Gulf Wax is an ingredient!

peanut butter
rice crispies
powdered sugar
melted butter
chocolate chips
gulf wax

MMMMM, look at that yummy deliciousness inside; makes me think about making these again!