I’m So Excited, My Cow’s Head Was Delivered!

ImageI LOVE this guy!  Very quirky.

I’ve had this old red door for quite some time.  I bought it to bring up to the Lake, but it really doesn’t have a place there, so it’s been sitting in the garage.   This Christmas I decided it bring it in the living room and I liked it with a Christmas wreath on it.  I decided to keep it in there, but not sure it looks good.  What do you think?ImageI wish I could take credit for the idea, but I’ve copied it from Miss Mustard Seed.  Not only do I love her ideas and blog, but her Milk Paint is awesome!  I’ve done a few projects using the paint and they’ve come out wonderfully.  I will post those soon.


Backsplash Using Ceiling Tiles


Our house was new when we bought it.  It had high end finishes throughout the house.  Except the kitchen!  The builder didn’t put any backsplash on the walls and also didn’t put a lip on our rather large island.  That seemed odd to me, no lip so you aren’t able to put a stool there?  Well, I fixed both issues!  ha ha

I honestly didn’t feel that I would be very good at hanging tile and it seemed so permanent to me, so I decided to use ceiling tiles.  I found a place online that had so many different finishes to choose from.  But for me, the DIY was what I wanted.  So I ordered 15 unfinished tin tiles in silver.   They were only $10.00 each so shoot, I didn’t feel I had much to lose if I ended up not liking it.

I tried several different finishes on one of the tiles, as a guinea pig, and decided that I really just liked the one that I spray painted white and then sanded the edges of it.

I didn’t continue it behind our sink.  I like it the way it is, on the wall behind the oven.  The wall only took 6 tiles, so I have quite a bit still left.

I only put nails in the four corners of each tin.  Another good feeling, because I know if I want to change it, I haven’t wrecked the wall, not to mention that I seem to change things really often!

This is the way the tiles looked when I received them.


Here is a broader picture of the kitchen and how they look now:


Office and Guest Room Combination Or “Hide all the stuff for your home business”


When our daughter graduated college and moved back home to continue school, our guest room became my office. Making window decals sometimes entails rolls of vinyl all over the place.  i had really let it get awful.  We had no place for guests to sleep on their occasional visits, so I decided to reclaim it as a spare room.  But what to do with my vinyl cutter (quite large) and my computer, etc.?   In the closet!  It’s been perfect.  At the end of working, I tuck the chair in and close the doors.  The cutter is to the right of the window and yes, it can’t be hidden, but otherwise, the room looks inviting and

ImageImageI stole the headboard idea from my niece, Kristen.  When I first saw their guest room with one, I thought it
was the coolest idea, So…..$22 and a can of spraypaint and we have a headboard!  Thank you Kristen
and Nick!  This is a queen size bed so it would work very well for a king sized bed.

Coffee Bar

I have to admit, I am a coffee snob.  Worst yet, my daughter has become one as well.  Ugh, how I have failed!

Since I have my “one appliance on the countertop” rule, once my husband begged me to let him put his convection oven on the countertop, I knew I had to do something with my coffee pots.  Yes, plural.  I use two.  I use our Bunn for morning coffee, and during the day I use my Keurig Vue.  I love BOTH of them.

I found a great looking wall shelf on Houzz and was so happy to see that it was sold by Hobby Lobby.  I was lucky enough to catch it on sale so I bought two of them.  One for our home and one for the lake. So here is my coffee bar, which is in our dining area (open to the kitchen). 


Appliance Garage or in my words Hide that Hideous Toaster

The “rule” is only one appliance on kitchen countertops.  I love that idea and it’s the way I like things, no clutter filled countertops.

My husband was not happy when I started to put his toaster in the cabinet.  Nope, not happenin’.  I searched and searched for a way I could hide the dang thing.  The roll down appliance garages are cool, but it just wasn’t going to look good in my kitchen.

So I happened on this from Hobby Lobby (at 50% off, it was about $15.00):


I actually bought two of them.  I got ’em home and started to hollow them out.  I took all the drawers out and just stapled the drawer fronts back on.  I didn’t care what the inside of them looked like.  So here is the one that covers the toaster!


Here you can see a better view of the way they look in the kitchen.


Our Lake House….the Good, the Bad and the OMG, Ugly!

When we first went to see this house, our realtor told me that they smoked in their house.  Well, I must admit, as ashamed as I truly am, I smoke.  However, I never have smoked in our home.  So I didn’t think much of it.   I figured I didn’t smell it because I smoke.   It wasn’t until after closing, when we walked into the house, that it knocked me over.  Just unbelievable.  It was awful.  Dripping from EVERYWHERE.  Here are pictures.

Now think about it, how in the world THAT much nicotine got into the cabinets???  I know it seeps in of course, but OH MY GOODNESS!  Look at the cutlery tray!!

2013-02-15 17.41.23 2013-02-15 20.58.44 disgusting2-2013

My husband was furious.  He really hadn’t wanted to purchase a second home, and this really wasn’t helping my plight.  I kept assuring him that with a little painting, I’d get it all fixed up.

Our daughter, Dave and myself had made plans to “camp out” there that night.  I was really excited!  I had so wanted a little home on a lake.  He complained all night that the smell was preventing him from sleeping and I really couldn’t argue.  But I kept defending this sweet house, “this house NEEDS us, Dave”.

The next morning I went to pull up the disgusting carpet, only to find this:


The crack went from the dining area into one of the bedrooms.  How in the hell did this happen, we had an inspection done??  Dave had us packed up and on the way home within minutes, while he called the realtor.  And then a lawyer.  Nope, nothing.  Not a thing that could be done.  Did they know about the crack?  Eh, I like to think the better of people, but when you walked on it even with the carpet down, you could tell something was under there.  I figured they had cable wire or something under there.  So a call to a foundation repair company was made.

Within the next two months, we found out we had termites (yup, had a termite inspection done as well but there was snow on the ground….) then had to completely have the exterior plumbing.  All of this to the tune of $4,000.   The one question we DON’T ask around here is “what’s next?”!

Needless to say, Dave has been up there maybe four times in the last 10 months of owning the house.  It makes me sad, but I’m determined to create this house into a home.




Welcome to The Cartoon Kitchen!

Thanks for visiting!  This is my first experience blogging my decorating endeavors. Friends and family kept insisting that I post my projects and ideas to a blog, so I finally relented, and here we are!

First off, I’ll give you a little background on the name of my blog, The Cartoon Kitchen.  This goes back over 20 years, to when my husband and I bought a house in the suburbs of Houston, Texas. To call this house a “fixer-upper” would be an understatement.  Let’s just say that my introduction in design and renovation were born from complete necessity!

One of my favorite projects was completely remodeling the kitchen. I decided to take a completely original approach and hand paint everything–the checkerboard walls, the wallpaper border (though there was no actual wallpaper), all the way down to decorating the tiled backsplash with hand-painted flowers.  Everything was original, colorful, and 100% original.  My three children would have their friends over and they all made the same comment, “It looks like a cartoon!” I suppose that’s a compliment, right?

And the rest, they say, is history!

Fast-forward to 2014, and our children have left the coop and my husband and I are comfortable in our own little slice of heaven in Columbia, Missouri.  In December of 2012, we purchased a lake house in Kirksville, Missouri which was in desperate need of some help.  Just consider that house my work of art, my Sistine Chapel! I’m determined to make that house just as undoubtedly original as our cartoon kitchen so many years ago.

What I really want out of this blog is some feedback (good or bad!) and advice from anyone who shares my love of remodeling and creative projects. I visit so many web sites daily and get so much inspiration from like-minded people who are able to put their work online and make it available for everyone to see. To all of you bloggers out there, I envy your bravery!

So here goes nothing!