Welcome to the One Room Challenge Week 4!


If you are just joining in you can visit here!

Am I ever see glad to see the back side of week four!  The plywood plank floors are done!!


They are the perfectly imperfect.  I love the color.  They actually look they have been down for a while and lived on, yet have that beautiful sheen you get with brand new floors.  I love how the stain pooled around the ends of some pieces and not others.

So lets have a look at the week in pictures, shall we.


This is where we were at on Thursday evening.  All the planks laid.


This is what we did on Good Friday!  Can you guess what color we used?

From here we spent the night at my sisters!  It was hilarious to see all the dogs hanging out together at her place.  Our two goldens, plus her golden and two cocker spaniels.  Throw in one moody black cat just for fun.  Oh and I can’t forget the two cats up in the “man cave”  Finny and Penny that belong to my nephew but were there for the weekend!

DSC_0621We had gorgeous weather on Saturday.  Which was perfect, because I spent the day adding the polyurethane.  We went with the 3 coats recommended.  We were able to keep the windows wide open, which enhanced the drying time and the ventilation.  It really was low odor though.

Then it was back to my sisters for the night!

Sunday morning we went back for a peak!  By Sunday night we could walk on it lightly and here is what it looks like now!


If you guessed that we used special walnut you would be right!  I was a bit panicked when it first went on. It had a very orangey undertone.  I resolved to the fact that it was meant to be but when I started to put on the varathane the orangey hue really faded and it is now distinctly warm brown.


I love all the detail and character that adding stain enhanced.


We are very happy with the way it looks with the buffet table that Tim built me (and the matching tv console not shown)!

After three long weeks I think the floor is finally ready for its close up!


So what do you think?  Will you ever try your hand at a plywood plank floor?  I plan to do a picture tutorial of the process we followed after the One Room Challenge is over!

By the end of the weekend we will have painted all the walls, painted and installed the baseboard and trim and ordered the area rugs.  Also attending an auction on Tuesday hoping to score a nice dresser to makeover as a storage piece for right inside the front door.  I have a fairly good idea of how the floor plan will flow, so I am pretty confident we will get this room complete by week six!

Until next time!

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Is it really possible that it is already week 3?!  If you ask my knees and fingers they will say, oh yes it is!


If you are new to the One Room Challenge, click here.

The plywood planks are all down!!  We will be staining and adding the varathane top coat over this Easter weekend.  Will be having a sleep over at my sisters house while the floors cure.

Here is a little peak at the new plywood planks.  (pretend you don’t see the wall behind!)

plywood floor

I have gained a huge appreciation for the air nailer.  At first I was scared to make a mistake and was letting Tim do all the nailing, but after a while I wanted to give it a try!  Had I known how easy it was, I would have taken over earlier!  My new favorite power tool.

I also had a chance to make over an old brass lamp I will be using in the living room.

Here is the before…..a really sturdy two toned brass lamp base with a lovely ivory pleated shade!  Functional, but not my style.

lamp 1

And the after……a couple of coats of antique bronze spray paint, the pleated shade switched out for a burlap shade from a broken lamp I had hanging around, which I painted with some $2 craft paint!

lamp 2

lamp 3

You might remember my inspiration from Pottery Barn, which would have cost well over $200!  Total cost for my makeover.  $8.00.  Yeah me!


I also picked up a couple of things at Target on clearance.  I love that we have Target here in Canada now.  Their Threshold line is the best!  I plan to hang some hooks on the wall behind the door, and thought the wicker basket will hang nicely there and hold incoming mail and such.  The blue glass vase was too good to pass up for $4.00!!


I have picked the floor color, but you will have to wait until next week to see what color we went with…….or did we leave it au natural??!!  Only one wall left to paint.  Working on sketching out a floor plan.

So, there you have it.  One Room Challenge – Week 3 in the history books!

Come back next week as I will have lots to share in week 4!

Welcome to One Room Challenge Week 2 Link-Up!


 It has been a very productive week here at the Red Cottage.  Panic has already set in but there is no turning back now!!

If this is your first week visiting the link party, you can see the before photos here.

It was all about the floors this week.  I don’t think I will rest until they are done.  And while we have made great progress, the scariest part is yet to come.  Committing to a stain color, and of course there is the task of applying six to eight coats of varethane!

First task.  Buy the plywood.  Although it was a bit more costly, we went with good one side to eliminate the extra sanding required.  When I factor in the cost of our time (and how little of it we have) it was the right choice for us.  We had it cut to 6″ planks at the Rona store.  Another time saving decision since we don’t have a table saw.

week 2 1

I was lucky to get a 15% off coupon by email from Rona the morning we were going to buy the lumber.  Yeah!!

week 2 2

Tim loaded it all into the car.  That’s me up front doing my best “Wilson” impression from Home Improvement!!  Truth is, I was pretty much wedged in there.

week 2 3

 By the time we got home from the lumber store, Sam was itching to get that old flooring up.  I don’t know what Tim would have done without her.  She set to work and there was no stopping her!  Between her and Tim the old floor was up and out in about 3 hours!  Tim will admit it was way more Sam than him!

week 2 4

A first glimpse of what we found underneath.  I am sure that old wood was beautiful back in its day!  I even toyed with the idea of refinishing it but the more we uncovered the more I knew it just wasn’t possible.

week 2 5

Being a tiny house there was really nowhere we could put the furniture, so we just moved it around as we went.  My job was clean up, taking the old boards outside and loading them up to be taken away.  I was falling a bit behind!

week 2 6

The last board coming out!  All smiles :)  Sam let Tim in on the photo just to make it look like he worked as hard as she did!

So it is out with the old……..

And in with the new……..

week 2 7

We chose wood with lots of character.  There are not a lot of knots, which is okay with me, I just love the natural random pattern on the wood that will be enhanced with the stain.  Using a sanding block I gave each edge a quick sand to provide a very slight bevel.  Took me only about 20 seconds a board.

week 2 9

 Since we are running the new floor straight through the living room and the dining room we started the first row well out from the wall as this would be the first row to run the length of both rooms.  We first made a level chalk line the length of the room and checked it twice to make sure it was straight and an even distance from the outside wall all along the entire length.  Using an air nail gun 1 1/2 inch 18 gauge finishing nails are nailed 2 on either side of the board every 6 inches.  Tim made sure to hold the nail gun to a slight angle towards the outside edge.  After this first row was in place, he worked back towards the front wall, and then went back to the first row and is working is way across the rooms.  The total length of both rooms is 24 feet, and the width is 12 feet.

Week 2

When I look at how it looks now and wonder what was I thinking taking on this challenge I am reminded of my early teen years, when my mom would give me a home perm. (It was the late 70′s, everybody was rocking a curly home perm, weren’t they!)  Looking like a dork with tiny rollers and cotton all over my head, she tried to make me feel better by saying “sometimes you just have to go through looking ugly to be beautiful”!!  This room is looking pretty ugly right now.

I hope to be staining the floor by the weekend.  It is supposed to be warm and sunny and I can keep the dogs outside for the entire day, allowing lots of dry time.  Then cover it back up with plastic until the verathane goes on next weekend.

I bought sample pots of three different stains that we all kind of liked at the store.

week 2 8

This is with one coat of stain and 3 coats of verathane.  The verethane was hastily applied with a cheap craft sponge and I was too impatient to wait 2 hours between each coat, so it has a bit of a texture to it but it gives us an idea of the depth of color for each sample.  I am leaning towards the last sample.  It is Minwax special walnut.  Not totally sure though yet.  I don’t know what I was thinking when I thought I would like the first one, Early American.  It is even orangier in person than it is in the picture.  I also thought about maybe a whitewash finish but I think a darker floor is a more suitable option in our household.

Again, the wall color we are going with is East Coast Blue from the Rona Collection in a satin finish.

east coast blue

We have already painted the dining room in this color.  I love it on our walls because depending on the light in the room and how you look it, it is more of a grey than blue which is exactly what I was going for.

Besides completing the floor through to the stain process this weekend, and painting the walls,  I am working on restyling an old lamp (which I scored for free) to look like the one in the photo below from Pottery Barn!  I will share that next week.


So much more to do!  What do you think so far?!

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Welcome back to Tasty Tuesdays

Life is getting very busy as I take on other projects, like this one.  Red Cottage Chronicles will not be going away, but this will be my last week as co-host of this amazing link party.  The good news.  This gives an opportunity for other bloggers to become a co-host!!  Visit www.anyonita-nibbles.com to apply…….

……..And continue to come back here to visit often as I get back into the kitchen and bake up all sorts of tasty treats!

Not to worry though!  Link up here this week and still have your link pinned, and a chance to be featured by one the other fabulous bloggers who co-host Tasty Tuesdays!

Each week, our team of 10 amazing bloggers hosts this fabulous party! We’re so glad that you’ve stopped by to party with us!

Without you, we wouldn’t have a party at all. So we think you’re pretty special and deserve to benefit from linking up with us each week. Here’s how:

Before we get to the party, we have a couple of ground rules to ensure that everyone has an enjoyable time:

So many awesome recipes to choose from! In an effort to start eating healthier, I am featuring some healthier fare! Plus a cheesecake that is making my mouth water! Because it is all about balance :)


Sugar Free Banana Bread - Pickled Okra by Charlie


Mango Orange Smoothie - Memories By The Miles


Paleo Lemon Ginger Asparagus Soup - Nibbles and Noshes


Apple Cranberry Gluten-Free Crisp - Cataldolife

Strawberry Cheesecake[1]

Strawberry-Vanilla Cheesecake - The Homestead in the Hills of Tennessee

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Spring is finally, slowing starting to show its face.  Mind you, it is still mixing it up with a bit of what feels like winter but still the right side of zero degrees!!

raspberry tart 5

To celebrate I decided to make this raspberry mascarpone tart!  The original recipe calls for rhubarb, but it is a bit too early to find it fresh in stores and no matter how I tried, I could not find any frozen either.  I am sure next week, when I don’t need any, I will see it in every store.  That’s just my luck.

raspberry tart 1

Thankfully I always have lots of frozen raspberries in the freezer.  Always have them in my daily smoothie!

Raspberry Tart

The sweetness of the sugar and mascarpone cheese blended with the slightly tart raspberries make a perfect pairing.

I adapted this recipe from one I found in a brochure promoting Ontario grown fruits and vegetables.

I really can’t wait to try it with the rhubarb, another tart fruit!  I remember when I was a youngster, our neighbour had a huge rhubarb patch in her back yard.  We would cut it fresh and dip into a bowl of sugar one bite at a time.  We would even share the sugar bowl and double dip!  Gasp!  But, we all lived to tell about it!!

raspberry tart 3

I love how pretty this tart is.  All swirly and creamy and incredibly decadent!

Why not make it for your Easter table!

raspberry tart 4


Raspberry Mascarpone Tart
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 10
  • 1¼ cups all purpose flour
  • 3 tbsp. confectioners sugar
  • ⅔ cup cold butter, cut into cubes
  • 3½ cups frozen raspberries
  • ¾ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp. cornstarch
  • 1 cup mascarpone cheese
  • ½ sour cream
  • ¼ tsp grated lemon zest
  1. In a large mixing bowl sift together flour and icing sugar. Add butter and rub in until mixture is crumbly.
  2. Press evenly into bottom and up sides of 9 inch flan pan with removable bottom. Dock the dough by pricking with a fork in several places. Bake at 350 degrees for 18 minutes, or until lightly browned. Cool completely before filling.
  3. While tart shell is cooling combine raspberries, ½ cup of the granulated sugar and cornstarch in a saucepan, stirring and cooking over medium low heat until sugar dissolves. Continue to cook until raspberries are tender. Cool to room temperature and then chill.
  4. In a large bowl combine mascarpone chest, sour cream and remaining ¼ cup sugar. Stir in grated lemon cyst.
  5. Spoon cheese mixture into flan shell and alternately with half the raspberry sauce. Swirl gently with a knife to create rippled effect.
  6. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving. Top with reserved raspberry sauce and a few fresh berries before serving.

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