First and foremost...some much needed color! Since we didn't get any snow while we were there and there were only "flurries" in the forecast I decided flowers were in order. Enough gray and gloomy, naked trees, brown leaves, blah blah blah.
When you grow up in Florida, live your entire life in Florida...it's really WEIRD to walk into Home Depot or Lowe's and find EMPTY garden centers. We buy plants year round in Florida. I have to get used to this whole "winter" thing.
Last spring we put up these flower baskets on the railing around the parking area. I put sponges in the bottom, used that fancy potting soil that retains moisture and even had the redneck version of "aqua globes" in them to try and keep my drought tolerant, low maintenance plant choices alive between visits. No dice. In December we had one little asparagus fern still hanging in there. At the end of January even it gave up and turned brown. So I went all out redneck. I chose purples and yellows because of my new little garden flag.
Yep...they're fake. NO maintenance! Michael's had a big sale on spring florals so I spent what I would have spent on real plants that would be dead in a month and we shall see if these don't get us thru to the beginning of summer before it's time to toss them and get something more summery.
That would be Mr. Paisley looking a little annoyed because i'm always taking pictures while he's working. We are still fighting the mouse. Or rat. I prefer to think of it as a mouse. We put out traps with real food. We put out bait trays - that dang mouse just MOVES the bait from the trays! Our trip in January was the 2nd trip since putting out the bait trays - you know, the ones with the little blue-green pellets. I went to put on my snow boots and one was full of pellets! Whisky Tango Foxtrot. I decided to clean out and reorganize the closet under the stairs. I moved the shelf unit and there was an entire tray worth of pellets behind it (no tray in the closet). This trip in February - a couple of the trays were EMPTY. Yep, but that dang mouse isn't dead.
Here Mr. Paisley is putting quarter round along the top of the walls where the actual full logs stop before becoming framed above. There's a pretty good gap we found. Not so much big enough for the mouse to get in, but plenty big enough to wonder why the power bill isn't thru the roof from air loss! It's big enough that the quarter round doesn't stick out of the log wall.
Here is the new "baseboard" upstairs. The builder did a really halfass job fitting the flooring around the beams...which in fact go OUTSIDE and that was big enough for a mouse to squeeze thru. They're currently not stained, but will get stained when the floors get redone - hopefully this summer.
We also drove into Knoxville to visit our friends at Perma-Chink. Your source for anything log home. For a mere $90 they hooked us up with a case of fancy, paintable, stainable, insulating caulk specifically for log homes. Obviously, Mr. Paisley didn't do his best work on this one. Hopefully it won't be noticeable after it's stained. The sweet thing about Perma-Chink is that they give you a ton of stuff for free. They gave us the stuff to clean the wood (2 different products) and a bottle of stain that will be plenty to do the quarter round and the caulk. Plus since we live in Florida, we didn't have to pay the somewhat ridiculous Tennessee sales tax. Sweet.
Here is the fireplace. The only thing I did was add the wood curl, pine cone and berry tree. This was an after Christmas score from Target. I paid $4 for it.
Remember how I said this cabin is built kind of halfassed? This is a hacksaw blade. Mr. Paisley stuck it up there while he was doing the quarter round. It's where the sloped ceiling meets the front wall - above the range and kitchen cabinets.
More quarter round and somewhat sloppy caulking.
More fake plants! These are on the deck - the ivy has been there, I replaced what was in the red, white and blue flag pocket with something more drapey and these cute little grassy red flowers that move with the slightest breeze. I also added the little sign to the left of the pocket. It says I *heart* USA and has little wood buttons on it. I got it for $.25 at the local outlet where they basically pay me to take stuff home.
This is inside the screen porch-deck where the hot tub is. We finished screening (basically that triangle over the door) and sealed that up with caulk and trim. The hot tub deck is now officially bug free! I picked up the stars after Christmas at Joann, ETC. They were $19.99 originally (uhh no...), I got them for 90% off. Sold. I bought 4. They're red (duh) with embossed swirls and they're coated with clear crystal stuff that resembles chunky salt. The sign is another new addition from the outlet that just gives me stuff. I think I actually paid a little over $1 for it. It hurt. The hanger is curled wire and it has rusty jingle bells at either end and a white metal star. Random...
This is the last bit...I hung up the Liberty flag. I've had this one for awhile. I got it at Ross (have you seen that rap video on you tube? It's hilarious - click here to see it) on clearance (of course) for $1.99 - hey it's better quality than the one in the screened room what can I say. It's on the open deck aka front porch. As you can see, we REALLY need to clean and stain the outside of the cabin. Not really the time of year for that (and frankly, I don't want to do it, i'd rather pay someone - especially with the back side of the house 30' off the ground. The star chain came from Big Lots last summer. Someday the plant stands will have plants on them and someday there will be a seating area on the deck. Mr. Paisley is going to build me a porch swing and a couple of Adirondack chairs. Another project...another post.