Monday, January 30, 2012

Beating the Bathroom Blahs: Chapter 1, Ceiling

My husband is quite musical, like with instruments. 
I am not.
His music makes him happy. 
So does mine.
I just like to make a different kind of "music". 

That is the philosophy I used to convince my husband to help me with my latest creative project.

My bathroom has the blahs.

A new and different kind of ceiling. 

A close up of my hubby's handiwork.

First we went to the store and got the wood. 
Then we hauled it home in the Durango.
I should have taken a picture of that because it was quite the funny sight.

So anyway, we got it home. 
I stained all the wood as it lay out in the freezing cold garage. 
It was very cold.

Fortunately my husband does the precision cutting and I only had to go back out to the way too cold garage long enough to hold the tape measure.

Next we brought the pieces into the house one by one and put it on the ceiling. 
Nice and Easy.

But we got it done.
Well almost.
I still have to do a little touch up and add a coat or two of polyurethane.

If you want a more complete description of this process, check out the blog I found through Pinterest. It's where I got my motivation.

Since we used nails on the trim, we didn't need to do any taping. I also don't need to fill as many gaps because my hubby is as big of a perfectionist as I am, so his boards are more likely to be too long vs too short.  However, we often end up either forcing the board in or he takes it back out to the freezing cold garage and trims it ever so slightly.

Hubby says I can't look at

He's joking....I hope.

You know those small gaps I mentioned? Sigh....Well, I found this stuff at the hardware store that is like drywall spackel but it is for exposed wood and it is stainable. I applied it to the ceiling just like I would drywall mud, blending the two boards together so that if someone was to touch them it would appear to be one continuous  flowing board. 
Then I looked at my work and wondered how it would look once it was stained, Would the stain show as beautifully as it did on the wood grain? That lovely grain that is now covered up in the corners. Hummmm...
So this morning I did a test patch and yep it is stainable, however; because there is no grain it is lighter and less interesting. 
The result is that I have spent my morning sanding off all the excess wood spackel. Off the ceiling! My arms are not so happy with me today.
What have I learned:
This stuff is not drywall mud. There is no need to blend. Just fill the gaps. Oh! and wipe off the excess while it is wet.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Banana Bread Pancakes Shortcut

I absolutely love banana bread, so when I saw this recipe I decided that I was going to make these. I started reading through the recipe and that little "wah wah" sound went off in my head. The idea of flour of any sort and baking powder being accurately measured in my kitchen the first thing in the morning was....well, laughable.

Here is the link to the real recipe. I am sure that it probably tasted even better then mine. After all, she took the time to make it from scratch. From scratch always seems to be better...always.

Banana Bread Pancakes complete recipe

Didn't she have a lovely presentation. Now for my sleepy head version:

I started off with this....

3 cups    Krusteaz Wheat & Honey Pancake Mix
Add water until reaches your favorite consistency
1/4 cup  brown sugar
1    tsp   cinnamon
1/4 tsp   nutmeg
1    Tbs  vanilla extract
3    lrg ripe bananas, smashed

Mix it all together in one bowl. (I didn't really measure my cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. I just sprinkled some in until it looked "good".)

I made the syrup exactly like her recipe, with one exception. I heated it up in the microwave because my maple syrup is cold and thick and didn't want to blend with the powdered sugar.  It didn't turn into a glaze like hers did.

Here's what I got...               

Tasty Pancakes

  There are a couple of things that I would change the next time I make them:

1.   Make sure my bananas are overripe just like I do with banana bread, you know when the skin gets all black. It just adds so much more banana flavor.

2. Since I absolutely do not like the taste of powdered sugar, I will simply not make the glaze again. Maybe since I heated it in the microwave it didn't "glaze".  Anyway,  I couldn't see a reason to add more sugar to a completely sugary base, especially when that ingredient doesn't really have a pleasing taste.

These pancakes are a nice change to the same ole' pancakes. I will definitely be making them again.