Monday, March 20, 2017

spring cleaning au naturel

On the back of Spring, comes my desire to totally, all-out, no holds barred, clean my home. Yep, that means scrubbing every corner and hidden crevice, washing and rewashing the floors and walls - cleaning the house from top to bottom.


I mentioned in a previous blog how addicted I am to homemade, all natural cleaning remedies.

If you're getting ready for your own cleaning party then you might enjoy using some of my favorite homemade recipes -

1) ALL PURPOSE CLEANER (I rarely use anything else)
In a spray bottle combine 1 tablespoon liquid dishwashing detergent (I use a natural soap like Meyers or Method) with 6 oz. tap water.


2) COUNTERTOP DISINFECTANT
Add three drops of Lemon Tea Tree Oil with warm water. Spray counters to disinfect naturally.


3) PAINTED MILLWORK AND WOOD FURNITURE (my go-to fav)
Mix equal parts Distilled White Vinegar with tap water, add 6 drops of Olive Oil. Soak cotton rags in solution. Wring the rags until damp. Lay out and add a few lemon rind peels. Fold/roll and store in a clean jam jar until ready to use.


4) GLASS/MIRROR CLEANER
Combine 2 cups water with 1/4 cup white vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon dish soap in a spray bottle.


5) HARDWOOD FLOOR CLEANER (be sure to dry the floors after)
Combine in a spray bottle one cup tap water with 3/4 cup Distilled White Vinegar, 3/4 cup Isopropyl Alcohol (Rubbing Alcohol) then top off with two-three drops of a natural Dish Soap (my preference is Meyers). Screw on the lid and shake well.


6) TRAVERTINE/LIMESTONE FLOOR CLEANER (use every time)
Mix one part Rubbing Alcohol with four parts tap water.


7) CARPET CLEANER
Combine 20 drops of Tea Tree Oil with Borax


8) BATHTUB/SINK SCRUB (toss rag in washer to freshen it up)
Mix 1/2 cup Baking Soda and 1/2 cup Distilled White Vinegar with 5 drops of Bergamot.


9) CLEANER FOR PAINTED WALLS (I like this but it isn't perfect)
In a spray bottle mix 1 part tap water and 1 part Distilled White Vinegar with 1/4 part Lysol Cleaner.


10) CLEANER FOR THE DISHWASHER (use once a month)
Spray the inside floor of your dishwasher with Distilled White Vinegar and wipe away with rag. Pour one cup of Distilled White Vinegar in the inside bottom of your dishwasher, then place one cup of Baking Powder in the bottom of your dishwasher, add three drops of Lemon Oil and run an empty dishwasher through a normal cycle.


11) KEEPING TRASHCANS ODOR-FREE
Place a Cotton Ball with two drops each of Lemon Oil and Tea Tree Oil at the bottom of the trashcan - helps clear odors and detoxify the can.


12) PURIFY THE AIR
Add Tea Tree Oil to a Diffuser to kill mold and other pathogens in the air.


13) CLEANER DISHES
Add a few drops of Lemon Oil to the dishwasher before starting.


14) REMOVE SOAP SCUM
Mix one cup of Liquid Fabric Softener with one quart of warm water - gently wash the glass in circular motion then rinse with warm water.


Well, I am off to do a little cleaning....until next time.

la chasse au bonheur

Saturday, March 4, 2017

bring on the sunshine

After this gray and chilly winter, I'm ready for a little sunshine!  And even though spring is around the corner, there are no guarantees we'll see the sun in the northwest anytime soon.  So today, it's all about yellow.



Decorating with yellow is a great way to brighten up a space - whether with paint, fabric or a few 'golden' accessories. Yellow is the easiest color for the human eye to see and it is the one color people who are color blind can usually see. Yellow stimulates your memory, nervous system, mental process, and encourages communication.

I love how this sunny yellow chair
brightens up this moody corner!

Yellow can be bright-and-sunnysoft-and-butterybold-to-subtle, bright-to-dull, and big-to-little depending on how you use it, where you use it, and the tone you choose. 

Let's bring a little sunshine into your home, shall we?

ADD TOUCHES OF YELLOW - using pillows, drapery, rugs, and painted pieces
If you're not ready to fully commit to yellow, try adding yellow accessories to brighten up your interiors. 

Add a pillow to your neutral interiors for a pop of sun!
Pretty fabric at the window and corner
chair add some liquid happiness to this room!
Paint the back wall of a book shelf or cabinet.
Who doesn't like walking on sunshine?
Paint one piece of furniture yellow for drama!
A cheery front door makes a welcoming statement.

YELLOW WORKS WELL IN CERTAIN ROOMS
Have you ever noticed that certain colors work better in certain rooms? Yellow, for example, works particularly well in kitchens, baths, laundry and kids/nursery rooms.

This ultra charming farmhouse kitchen screams
yellow cake with buttercream frosting! YUM!
Painting the vintage tub yellow and adding fabric
at the window turns up the WOW in this classic bath


Yellow makes housework happy!
(ok, maybe not happy, but more pleasant?)


Love this wallpaper and the color of the tile!


Yellow is so versatile - it can go BOLD ...

... or subtle!

YELLOW PLAYS WELL WITH OTHERS


Yellow works well with red - such a classic!
Another classic - yellow and navy!
Yellow blends with light greens and yummy corals.
Yellow works well with gray and oyster.
Yellow works well with black!
Depending on the tone, yellow works well
with colors like teal/peacock/aqua blue,
And yellow just works with yellow!

PAINTING WITH YELLOW
Ready to go all in? Choosing the right shade of yellow will be your key. Check out these colors to see which one is right for your current interiors, keeping in mind the amount of natural light in your room and how it feels at night. 

COOL/LIGHT
Hawthorne Yellow by Benjamin Moore
Butter Up by Sherwin Williams

COOL/DARK
Babouche by Farrow & Ball
Caramel Honey by Valspar

WARM/LIGHT
Butter Milk by Benjamin Moore

Sun Rays by Glidden

WARM/DARK
Summer Sunflower by Sherwin Williams
Roasted Chestnut by Valspar

SOME INSPIRATION:

Such a pretty blend of traditional and contemporary -
this yellow is a beautiful back drop to the teal runner,
dark blue door, ebony floors and rails, and white trim!
A pretty statement on cabinets!
So sunny - I'm not sure I would leave!
I appreciate (& love) the subtlety of this vignette!

My personal preference is a dialed back yellow, more of a mustard color and warm tones. Here's how I've incorporated yellow into my own home -


We wallpapered our tiny powder room
in this beautiful paper by Osborne & Little
and used fabrics in our living room!

I hope this has brightened your day, it sure has mine!


Until next time,

la chasse au bonheur


Monday, February 20, 2017

the painted door

The moment you pull up to a home your eye focuses on the front door and subliminally what that door says about the condition of the house and its inhabitants. Think of it like a smile or frown when you first approach someone.

Often overlooked, a properly painted, and well cared for, front door gives visitors a hint of what to expect once inside. It also adds a little personality – like a tie to the business suit. The nice thing is - this is not an expensive project and is an easy do-it-yourself project, and will instantly (ok, within a few hours) transform the exterior of your home.

I work with sellers to help them find the right color to add curb appeal and welcome guests in style.  Here are a few of my favorite front door colors –

RED – Caliente AF-290 from Benjamin Moore is the perfect blue/red that works beautifully with a traditional white home with black shutters. This new listing in Broadview is the perfect example of how a front door can dress up a home and adds a punch of personality! 
BM Caliente AF-290
13559 Northshire Road NW Offered at $925,000
YELLOW – Benjamin Moore’s Hawthorne Yellow HC-4 and Concord Ivory HC-12 are both historical colors reflective of traditional architecture, but work just as beautifully in modern homes.
BM Concord Ivory HC-12

BM Hawthorn Yellow HC-4
GREEN – For a European inspired feel try Farrow and Ball’s Calke Green No.34
Farrow and Ball Calke Green No. 34
GRAY – for a softer cape feeling, try Benjamin Moore’s Copley Gray - so soft!
Copley Gray
DEEP BLUE – Benjamin Moore’s Evening Sky 833 is a dialed down deep blue that works well with all styles of homes.
BM Evening Sky 833
GRAY-PURPLE Benjamin Moore's Mountain Ridge 1456 can go either rustic or sophisticated, depending on the style of home.
BM Mountain Ridge 1456
BLUE-GREEN – Benjamin Moore’s Venezuelan Sea 2054-30 is such a fun and lively color that blends beautifully with brick and soft white.
BM Venezuelan Sea 2065-30
DARK GREEN-ALMOST BLACK – Benjamin Moore’s Black Forest Green provides a little more interest than pure black.
BM Black Forest Green
While all these colors can be color matched by any paint store, I highly recommend using Benjamin Moore’s Aura Grand Entrance product in Satin  finish (High Gloss for Reds/Dark Greens/Blacks).

Until next time,

la chasse au bonheur

Monday, January 23, 2017

an organized car

Whether you're driving kids from school to the soccer field, or using your car as a home office on the fly, keeping these items in your car will make the road a lot smoother!

IN THE GLOVE COMPARTMENT

  • Car Registration
  • Insurance Card
  • Copy of your Driver's License
  • Pen and Notebook
  • Flashlight
  • Window Hammer
  • Tire Pressure Gauge
  • Organizer for Car Maintenance

IN THE CENTER CONSOLE

  • Container for Change and Small Bills
  • Cell Phone Charger x2 and iPad Charger
  • GPS
  • Swiss Army Knife
  • Matches
  • Tissues/Napkins
  • Hand Sanitizer and Hand Lotion
  • Wipes (hands or dashboard)
  • Tide-To-Go Stain Remover Pen
  • Tylenol/Advil/Tums
  • Deodorant
  • Lipstick and Perfume/Cologne
  • Toothbrush and Toothpaste, Breath Mints
  • Mini Sewing Kit

BACK SEAT


IN THE TRUNK OR REAR CARGO SPACE



  • Emergency Kit - adding extra items specific to your family/your needs
  • Emergency Car Kit, including Crank Style Radio and Flashlight
  • Screwdriver with various bits
  • Ice Scraper and Window Washer
  • Carpet Cleaner and Car Vacuum (plugs into car outlet)
  • Compostable Bags for Trash
  • Reusable Grocery Bags
  • Water for Emergency
  • Snacks (cheese and crackers, raisins, fruit bites, granola bars)
  • Extra Diapers, Wipes and Changing Pad
  • Sunscreen and Lip Balm
  • Blanket (perfect for an impromptu picnic or to stay warm)
  • Picnic Basket/Tote with utensils, plates, glasses, napkins
  • Hair Spray, Brush
  • Scissors, Paper clips, Binders, Note Pads, Pens in an Organizer
  • Gift Bags, Ribbon and Generic Gift Tags 
  • Board Games, Crayons and Coloring Book/Pages
  • Dog Food/Treats, Collapsable Water Bowl and Leash

Until next time,

la chasse au bonheur