Monday, October 14, 2013

Biggest DIY yet!

Yes - you're seeing that correctly.  We have taken on a full exterior paint job as a do it yourself project.  I can't say we won't hire a professional before this whole thing is done - but for now we are seeing what we can do.  We've started on the back side of the house and hope (NEED) to finish this side before our New England Winter shows up.

Steps taken so far:
  • Scrape any old paint that will come off
  • New paint colors selected

Steps needed before winter:
  • Finish the never ending scraping
  • Sand all cedar shingles
  • Prime everything
  • New PVC window trim
  • Flash AC unit
  • Correct bad flashing job on porch roof
  • Final coat of paint (if this can't happen, we'll need to prime again in the spring)

What we've learned so far:
  • Residing a house is expensive! We've priced out DIY options of just stripping the whole house and starting fresh with new shingles but we have red cedar (which are the best you can buy) and the cost to replace would be crazy.
  • Don't caulk between every single shingle.  Sealing up the whole house with caulk = a house that can't breathe.  And a house that can't breathe = bubbling paint everywhere.
  • A pressure washer cannot replace human scraping.... bummer.
  • You get killer calf muscles when you're on a ladder all weekend.
The scraping supply bucket: safety glasses, variety of scrapers, bee spray!
We have a decent routine now for set up, clean up, and take down each night so that we're not spending too much time setting up our work space each day.  We'll keep you updated as we progress and what else we learn in the process.

Friday, October 4, 2013

Smoked Garlic Mushrooms

Smoked Garlic Mushrooms
We eat these as just a side dish; they also go great as steak, chicken, or burger toppings.

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes

1lb Baby Bella Mushrooms – sliced (you can use button mushrooms, but bellas are the best)
2 Garlic Cloves – minced
1 tbsp Unsalted Butter
1 tsp. smoked paprika
¼ cup Parsley - chopped
Salt & Pepper

Melt butter in a sauté pan (or on the grill in any grill safe cooking vessel) on medium heat.  When the butter is melted, add mushrooms, salt and pepper (a good 1/4 tsp of salt) and about a ½ tsp of smoked paprika, depending on how smoky you like it.  Sauté mushrooms until soft.  When mushrooms are done toss with parsley.

Smoked Garlic Mushrooms top an 80/20 all beer burger with smoked Gouda cheese on a wheat bun.  The Patron tiki torch bottle project can be found here.