0 Good Read

>> Friday, October 29, 2010

Yesterday was my favorite day of the year. Not my birthday. Not a major holiday. Not the completion of my house-in-progress (no, no. Not even close). Yesterday was the first day this fall I flipped the thermostat from cool to heat. Ahhhhh, glorious coziness meant just for PJ pants, obnoxiously thick socks, hot tea and a good book. My read of choice? A DIY flea market/junk store coffee table book, of course!

This book worm of a gal has a rapidly growing collection of home inspired reads…

…but a recent find picked up at Anthropologie’s opening in Little Rock a few weeks back (we’ll save the glorious details of that day for another time) had been sitting uncracked for far too long.

This fabulous collection of inspirational goodness covers the entire spectrum of flea market fun…ideas for rehabbing furniture finds…experimenting with pattern & color…glass & ceramic goodies…lighting…and finally, putting it all together to make one funky (and totally original) room.

Take a peek and see what I mean…

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Oh, dear. Now I have you drooling. Grab a tissue, your co-workers are starting to worry.

Happy Friday, ya’ll! Have a very happy (and safe) Halloween!



0 Post of Note: Adrianne’s Before & After Buffet

>> Thursday, October 28, 2010

There are no words to describe this before and after other than: I want it! I want it now..


For more on the method behind this insanely phenomenal DIY madness, head over to Dream Book Design.



23 In (not so) Hot Water

>> Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Since moving into this house 8 months ago, I’ve been fortunate enough to bypass any major home catastrophes—I’m knocking on some serious wood after making this statement. But with an old roof, old HVAC, old furnace and old hot water heater, this is quite an accomplishment.

So when I woke up Monday morning to find myself without hot water, I just knew my time had come. Time to murder my savings account with the expense of a new hot water heater. I was sure of it. My good house luck was over…maybe.

Being the stubborn DIY-er I am, I wasn’t quite ready to give up on my friend here…

After a little research (God bless you, Google) and diagnosing my hot water heater’s symptoms (pilot will light but will not stay lit), I determined the thermocouple was needing to be replacesd

What’s a thermocouple, you ask? Allow me to diagram…


In a nutshell, the thermocouple shuts down the gas supply in the event that the pilot light goes out. Basically, the thermocouple keeps your house from exploding. Kind of important.

So naturally my next step was to call a plumber to replace my thermocouple…um, yeah right! Time to tackle this bad boy myself. After calling a few plumbing supply stores I found the part I needed for just $6.00…

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After turning of the gas and triple checking to make sure all signs of gas had cleared away, I unscrewed the pipes connecting to the temperature gage and removed the inner workings of the water heater—not too scary. Once the pipes are disconnected, the other parts slide right out in one piece…

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Removed and replaced the thermocouple and reattached the pipes.

I’m excited to say I’m back in the hot water game. No plumber. No crazy high bill…just this gal and a $6 fix…and my Mom standing nearby to make sure I didn’t set my hair ablaze. Who could blame her after the insanely overdramatic depiction on the side of the water heater…


That’s enough to give you nightmares.



5 A Little LTHL Dialogue: Farewell to Ralph

>> Tuesday, October 26, 2010

I have a bit of sad news for my LTHL friends. My sweet little guy Ralph headed to puppy heaven last week. With his goofy ears and turned out feet, he never failed to bring a smile to my face. 






With one fewer family member hanging around this construction site of mine, leave it to Gran to have just the words to cheer me up.

IMG_4986 Gran: Cara, I am so sorry to hear about Ralph. I know you will miss him.


Cara: Thanks, Gran. I will miss him. He was such a great puppy.

Gran: Well, when my dog Sadie died (from eating too much butter over the course of her six year life, mind you) I decided to make a scrapbook and write down the funny things that Sadie used to do.

Cara: That is a great idea…

Gran: Yes, it was, but then again, I have lots of great ideas.

Cara: Well, what did you write about?

Gran: One thing that Sadie used to do was bark every time someone passed gas. She would announce it to the whoooooole room. Yes, she did….She was a good dog.

Thanks for the cheering up, Gran. You always know just what to say.

As a final farewell to my sweet little guy, I’ll leave you with his last LTHL video—a behind the scenes look at June & Ralph’s Halloween photo shoot. Ralph, you will be missed buddy.



0 Catching Up with eHow

>> Monday, October 25, 2010

In case you’ve missed the latest slew of eHow posts by yours truly, I’ll throw a summary your way to help beat the Monday morning back-to-work blues. Enjoy!…

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Keeping Inspiration Organized Designing on a Budget
Redesigned to sell_bath Prep_1IMG_7460
Redesigned to Sell Prep Your Closet for Fall



1 Just Listed: 7 Reservoir Heights Drive

>> Thursday, October 21, 2010

Charmingly updated 2 bedroom/2 bath condo in Reservoir Heights! Large updated kitchen with new countertops, fresh paint, new sink & disposal with spacious eat-in breakfast room. Enjoy your view from the treetops through the floor to ceiling windows. A separate sunroom makes a perfect office or second sitting area. Convenient location, tons of storage, and move-in ready. This condo is a must see!

Price: $139,900


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7 Reservoir Heights_dining

7 Reservoir Heights_kitchen

7 Reservoir Heights_breakfast room

7 Reservoir Heights_sunroom

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Click here for more info and photos of this condo!



3 Furniture Flipping: Kimberly’s Table

>> Wednesday, October 20, 2010

I’m all geared up from Amy’s fabulous before & after, so what better time to tackle another virtual furniture flip. Our next guinea pig comes from Kimberly…


Hey Cara! I need some expert advice. I found a cheap, light-wood table and chairs not too long ago for $50. My mom spray painted the table black with a flat paint, but did not sand it or anything.  Now, it is a not-so-pleasurable texture and the smallest things scratch it. The chairs have not been painted.


I have thought about spraying a sealant over the black paint, but I am thinking it still might look a little tacky afterwards, with not much improvement. I know this sort of thing is right up your alley. I just want a decent looking table that doesn't look like I tried to "fix" it up. I want it to look nice! Anyways, do you have any ideas or suggestions on what to do? Thanks, Cara!


I’m on it, girl! Not only am I impressed by the $50 price tag for the entire set, but you’ll be able to knock this project out in no time.

Before we break into the how-to, let’s get a little crafty with a game plan…

PREP: By now we all know this is the most important step in reaching the desired result. For Kimberly’s table, a light sanding over the rough areas left behind by the spray paint and a solid coat of primer should do the trick. I happily endorse Kilz primer and have buckets of it hanging around my workshop at all times.

1. Table: Kimberly’s initial thoughts were to go with the simple (and always reliable) look of a black table. Always an A+ in my book, but just to mix it up a bit I think a deep olive green would be an interesting twist.

2. Chairs: I would first like to apologize to Kimberly for making her chair rendering look more like that of a toilet seat. However, nowhere along this furniture flipping journey did I ever lay claim to outstanding drawing abilities…alright, moving on…Once again, black can enter the scene or opting for a green a couple shades lighter than the table would be perfection. Same color family, just a little on the lighter side to add interest.

3. Seal & Accessorize: After the paint is good and dry, a top coat sealant will make sure Kimberly’s new dining set can weather the bumps and dings of dinner guests. A few fun accessories and we’re in business! Pictured above: table runner from Pottery Barn and napkins from Crate & Barrel.

Hope this helps, Kimberly! And remember, before & after photos always make my day. Happy rehabbing!




1 Party Pics: Restore & After

>> Tuesday, October 19, 2010



A few weeks ago Habitat for Humanity hosted its first annual Restore & After event where local members of the community (including a few fabulous artists in their own right…and wannabes like me) rehabbed furniture for auction. Not only were hefty funds raised for a great cause, but a good time was definitely had by all. Take a gander…

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ReStore & After_3 Mailbox
Chest Charlotte & Ray
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Chair ReStore & After_6
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Good times, good fun, and even better, as the never failing victim of unkind sneak attack photos, I was able to keep my awkward facial expressions to a minimum. An all around success!

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PS...A huge thanks to Cara Beth Photography for capturing all of the fun on film! Click here to cruise on over to her blog and check out her work. 

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