Hi All!!!

Hope you are enjoying summer!!!  Is your barware causing crowding in your cupboards?  Do you sometimes not know where to store your bottles and glasses?  If so, this post may help you.  Because this post is on creating a home bar cabinet (home cabibar).  Soooooo - let's get started!
In our previous house we had a bar in our basement.  Altough we plan on  building one here - we haven't gotten that far so I was left with making room  for various glasses and bottles in the existing cabinet space.   Prior to
starting my hunt for dining room furniture I made a list of requirements.  I  knew overall that I wanted the room to be more inviting, with a less formal appeal, another  requirement was I wanted a place to store the glasses and bottles.   Sooooo -  with a vision of what I wanted the rest of the room to look like I set out to furnish the room...  when I spotted this cabinet it became my first purchase for the new look.  
The top half has three shelves for display and the bottom half has six drawers  all housed behind two full length glass doors.   Let's take a look inside. 
Since the top half is displayed behind the glass doors  - I decided I wanted an assortment of decanters and spent hours (and hours and hours) searching thrift stores, antique shops and the internet.  The use of decanters would help unify the look.  I initially suffered some sticker shock over how much decanters cost.  I finally found a few of these italian decanters (new and reasonably priced) on eBay and decided it was a start - a couple days later I found more of the same (also on eBay).   Score!!!
I toyed with various ways to label the decanters to identify the contents - finally (or should I say - temporarily) deciding on some self-stick lettering I had on-hand (black with a tad of glitter).  As you can see, some items got an abbreviated label such as TS (Triple Sec) or  OV (Orange Vodka) .  Although derived from necessity (I didn't have enough of some of the letters and didn't feel like running around trying to figure out where I even bought them) - I think the abbreviatons help keep things on the informal side. 
With my love for all thing beachy and summery - the shelves currently hold some beach accents as well as an assortment of adult beverages. 
I like the way the light sparkles on the glasses and bounces from the various colors of the bottled contents. 
I am probably (most definitely)  not the one to tell you what to stock your bar with - - you are a better judge of that - knowing what you, your family and friends like.  In fact, you probably already have it on hand.  I filled these bottles from our on-hand assortment.    I'm pleased with having a bar cabinet and happy to have precious cabinet space returned.   And remember drink responsibly - if you drink - don't drive!!!
Well all of this has made me want to go party - I'll be linking up with these talented ladies...

Enjoy!!!
 
 
Hi All,

Hope you are having a great weekend!!!   I picked up this great lantern (aka greenhouse or whatever you would like to call it) while we were in Hilton Head, SC.  Here it is after I decorated it with a beach theme. 
I knew I had to have it when I saw it and my husband liked it too (bonus)!!!  This thing is huge - it is a glass paneled hexagon, standing over 28 inches tall and 12 inches wide.  And I am not kidding when I say it is very camera shy - with all the glass panels, this was a true challenge to photograph.  It wants to reflect everything - it looks great in person but trying to capture the details in the camera lens without getting reflections...oh my!!!  This was definitely one of those posts that taking a ton of pictures took longer than it did to decorate it. 
I knew how I would decorate the lantern for summer as soon as I saw it.  This time of year, I love beach accents and this was no exception.  Using items that I had, I wrapped three pillar candles in twine, then placed them at different heights (using scrap pieces of wood - to raise the candles), filled the bottom with sand, scattered small shells on top of the sand and added a large starfish. 
This has a lot of potential it can be used indoors or outdoors.  The structure is great because the wind often blows out open candles on our patio.
The entire top flips open for easy access to the inside.  You could also add plants and use it as a mini greenhouse.
I think this oversized lantern will be fun to decorate winter, spring summer and fall  as well as for the holidays - unlimited possibilities...you will likely see this again. 
Here is one last look.
Beach Decor - Beach Accent
Before - Empty
Beach Decor - Beach Accents
After - Beach Accents
This is definitely a new favorite for me - how about you? Do you have something that you like to decorate for each of the seasons and holidays.  If so, I'd love to hear about it. 
I am linking up with these very talented ladies at their great parties - see you there!!!  That may look like a lot of parties but it's been a while since I have gotten out!!!
Picture
Cheri - It's So Very Cheri
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Vanessa - Nifty Thrifty
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Roeshel - DIY Showoff
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Alison - Stuff & Nonsense
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Lorie - Be Different - Act Normal
Picture
Nicholette - Craft Envy
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Ashley - Simply Designing
Picture
Adrianne - Happy Hour Projects
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Kristi - I Should be Mopping the Floor
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Vanessa & Heather - At the Picket Fence
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Debra - Common Ground
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Nicole - Doodles and Stitches
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Wendy - The Shabby Nest
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Marcie - I Gotta Try That
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H. Rae - An Original Belle
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Stephanie - Under the Table and Dreaming
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Debbie - Debbiedoo's
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Susan - Between Naps on the Porch
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Kristin - My Uncommon Slice of Suburbia
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Nichelle - Vintage Wanna Bee
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Stacy - Not Just a Housewife
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Linda - Coastal Charm
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Rebecca - My Girlish Whims
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Allison - House of Hepworths
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Kelly - Here Comes the Sun
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Adrianne - Happy Hour Projects
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Kristi - Addicted 2 Decorating
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Kathryn - The Dedicated House
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Christine - The DIY Dreamer
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Patti and Paula - Ivy and Elephants
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Good Time Charlie - Redoux
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Donna - Funky Junk Interiors
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Cindy - My Romantic Home
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Gina - The Shabby Creek Cottage
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Have a great week!!!

Enjoy!!!
 
 
Hi All!

Hope you are having a great week.  Here is a peek at the buffet sideboard that I recently found for our patio.  If you have been following me, you know that working on the patio was delayed by staining and getting the deck put back together with a little makeover.  Now that the deck furniture is back where it belongs - I am ready to start tweaking the patio - (and yes that includes hosing down the bricks - yickkk!!!). 
The patio area under our deck provides some shade and a place to serve food and beverages.  Over the years, we have tried a variety of tables with a tablecloth for serving on the patio - but they weren't quite right for everyday.  I decided I wanted some sort of buffet to fit along the wall that also looked good without a tablecloth. 

I had decided if I didn't find one soon, I was going to make one myself and then I spotted this one.  We were on our way back from our Family Reunion, amongst some of the Amish on their travels and decided to stop at some Antique Shops.   Here is one of the Amish buggies near one of the Antique Shops.   
Did you know...a white topped Amish buggy signifies a Nebraska Amish Settlement.  They are the only Amish that use the white top - this is one of their smaller buggies.  The Nebraska Amish are said to be one of the most conservative groups adhering to Old Order Amish - what people traditionally think of when they think of Amish.  The Nebraska Amish settled in central Pennsylvania's Big Valley, specifically - Mifflin County around 1791.  The Nebraska Amish also have a presence in Centre, Huntingdon and Union Counties.  Interesting to me as I have ancestors that settled in each of these counties, some in the 1700's. 
Anyway, I think this sideboard will be a nice addition for the patio.  I decided to buy the large baskets that they had displayed with it in the shop.  We can use them as a storage option or we can pull them out and just use the bottom shelf.   I even considered using these baskets for extra towel storage until I found the basket that keeps them out in plain sight.  

The sideboard is currently a little to orange for me and the baskets a little to yellow - sooooo, I'm sure there will be some sort of makeover in the future.  I am not sure what.   The top is currently has inlaid beige tiles - I'm not sure if they will stay or go... Does anyone have any suggestions for its new look?  It  will be used against the white siding and most of the furniture is dark brown.  Here is one of the before pictures of an adjoining area -  it's pretty plain in this picture - but this will give you an idea what's already there.   
Here is one more look at the sideboard in its current condition - with the baskets.  As far as the buffet goes, and your suggestions - it's all fair game - and  subject to change - - the wood, the tiles and the baskets - what do you think?
That's all for today.  If you have any ideas for refinishing the sideboard and baskets - I'd love to hear what you would do.  Have a great day!!!
Enjoy!!!
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Hi All!!!

Wha-cha-been up to???  Me - thanks  for asking - watching the sunrise, drinking coffee and wanting to share the sunrise and a small  discovery I made.   First, a look at the sunrise burning through some clouds. 
Not sure if I have said it before... but you should know,  by far - summer is  absolutely, positively my favorite season.  And I loooovvvvvveeeee being outside and for me that includes plenty of water activities. 

If you have ever owned a pool, beach house,  lake cottage, boat or for that matter, anything related to water activities - you likely already know ...those beach towels  - sometimes need taming.   So,  that has lead me in search of an idea for taming the beasts - the beach towels.  I want them to be readily available but presented with a neat  appearance.   I also want to be able to identify what needs laundered and what  hasn't been used.   When in doubt - into the wash they all go and sometimes - -  that can be a lot of towels!!!  Recently, I discovered this. 
On a recent run through Marshall's I spotted these baskets.  (How is it when we are in a hurry - is when we find the neatest stuff???)   It turns out the height is perfect for our oversized towels - pull them out of the dryer, two folds and a quick roll - then into the basket they go - any extras go to the linen closet.  Move the basket to a convenient poolside location and everyone can help themselves.  If you have ever been the one that has forgotten a towel you know sometimes you  just  hate to ask.    But now they are out in plain sight, neatly organized and  readily available.  At the end of the day, unused towels are still rolled and the others get a trip to the washer.  Towels are tamed and coming from someone who loves organization - I am loving this basket!!!  

Last Friday, as we were loading up for a trip to the beach, I threw the basket in with the luggage.  It's working great here too.  I sat the basket on the balcony where anyone heading for the beach or pool - can just grab a clean beach towel and be on their way.  
So, how about you - have you found a way to tame those beasts (beach towels) or has this inspired you to come up with your own idea - - if so, I would love to hear what you have done to tame the beast - keeping things organized while enjoying water activities. 

The sun is up and has burned its way through (not a cloud in sight), the dolphins are swimming by and I'm ready to grab a towel and head for the beach!  Have a great day!!!
Enjoy!!!
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Good Morning All!

Hope all is going well with you.  I spent some time over the weekend creating a new page - to make navigating to specific posts in my archives a little easier.  The new page is called The Collection - A Gallery of Projects.  Just scroll through the thumbnails and click on any of the thumbnails to see the rest of the story.   It looks like this...(except clicking on any of the thumbnails (below) will take you over to the actual collection where you can select the actual post from the thumbnail). 
I have been wanting to make a gallery with all of my projects and since I haven't been posting long, I thought it would be a good time to start and just add new posts are created.   I hope you like this new feature and find navigating past posts easier.  I am considering organizing by topics - but sometimes one project can be categorized in soooooo many ways.  If you have any suggestions - I would love to hear them.  Have a great day! 
Enjoy!!!
 
 
Hi All!

Welcome back!  Hope you are enjoying summer!!!  It's been busy around here.  First the family reunion, then we celebrated a friend's birthday, and then another friend's birthday, then Mr DN had a birthday, all mixed in with the  the 4th of July - but even with all of that we finished staining the deck.  I just haven't had time to post. 

I would say we finished the deck but that would imply that I am done doing things to it which is seldom the case around here.  Although I may move onto something else there is always something to be added or changed.   So here it is in its current state. 
I finally get to use the new cushions and pillows I picked up in Greenville, SC  back in May.  I wanted something in the neutral line so I decided on these cushions with a subtle stripe and then added the pillows to mix it up a bit.  I especially like the pillows with the polka dots. 

I originally had planned to make my own rug.   But - as luck would have it, I  found this the other day.   As quickly as summer is slipping away - and with more travels coming up - I didn't mind spending a little extra on the rug.  It has great texture and is neutral enough to allow various color schemes. 
Of course - you know how these things snowball - once the deck was stained - it was finally time to paint that faded back door.   Oooops - I guess I deleted the before picture (but trust me it was faded). 
Next came the fun part - adding some summer accents.  First came the potted plants, palms are a necessity in my book, they sway gently in the summer breezes adding movement to bring this area alive.  Then came the smaller accents.  I really like the dark color and texture of the wicker against the texture of the white starfish.
In keeping with the starfish and palms, most of the accents are in the beach family.   The glass pattern on the table tops mimics a water element for displaying the beachy accents. 
Take a closer look at that sailboat - isn't it cute...on our way home from the family reunion we stopped at an antique shop and I just had to have this little sailboat.  It is actually a glass ashtray with a sail - how cute!
This guy (although a little weathered) returns to takes his place adding sunshine to one of the side tables. 
At the other end of the deck there is a small bistro set.  The table and chairs recently got a fresh coat of oil rubbed bronze and that creamy vase is a thrift store find that was clear red glass until I got home.  In years past, we had a full-sized table that took up much of the deck.  With the grill on the patio - we found we usually ended up eating down there.  Soooo, that's when we decided to make the deck more lounging friendly.  The small table provides additional seating on the deck while keeping the option to have breakfast, lunch or dinner here.  The table also gives me a good place to sit and work on the laptop.   I am planning to make some cushions to make it more comfy but for now...
With everything in place (well almost) and evening closing in - it was time to sit down and relax.  That's when I realized, the placement of accents worked well for sitting and enjoying my morning coffee; but for now, I needed to make room for some of the other necessities.   Move over river rocks; make room for a magazine and a slushy refreshing drink!
That's what I'm talking about - our areas have to be flexible enough to enjoy all of our activities.   I am happy to have the deck furniture back where it belongs and freeing up the patio.  There are patio improvements on my list that were temporarily delayed while waiting for the deck to be stained - with this project near completion I am ready to move onto the patio projects.  Fun, fun, fun!!! 
I am off to find out what I can get into next - hope you have a great day!!!
Enjoy!!!
 
 
Hi All!

Welcome back!  I hope you are enjoying your Summer.    We are (still) staining the deck - well actually I am taking a little break.  So, today I am sharing the second leg of our trip to South Carolina.  I will be posting some more home projects soon.   After visiting Hilton Head Island (click to see more), we headed for the Charleston area. 

We arrived prior to check-in time, so we headed straght to the Wild Dunes, Isle of Palms Marina.  The plan was to meet my BIL and SIL and spend some time on the boat.  The first tropical storm of the season was hanging just outside of Charleston and I thought it might change our plans.  We had lunch upstairs at the Morgan Creek Grill overlooking the marina.   The first 10 minutes on the boat you needed a jacket - after that the wind and waters calmed - the sky cleared and it was clear sailing (no more jackets).   We spent some boating and chilling on an uninhabited island. 
There is so much to see and do here but I really want to share with you a wonderful place to stay.  We stayed at The Cottages on Charleston Harbor in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.   You may know The Cottages by their former name The Belvidere Resort .  
There are 10 cottages tucked in the lush foliage on historic  Patriots Point. 
The setting is perfect you have the feeling of  being in an isolated area despite plenty of  shopping and dining in Mount  Pleasant and of course Downtown Charleston is only 10 minutes away.    The walkway takes gentle turns as you make your way to your cottage. 
I had to stop and admire the flowers along the way.
Each of the cottages are named - here we have the Brightest Star - named appropriately as it postioned perfectly to receive the glory of the rising sun.  Don't let the picture fool you - this is actually a 1,300 square foot, 2 bedroom cottage with 3 full baths. 
Here is a shot of the living room - complete with gas fireplace.  The french doors lead out to the screened in porch.  I am providing some pictures that link back to The Cottages web site.  Some of mine were over exposed due to the amount of sunlight pouring in - and that's okay by me!  Let it shine!
Below is the fireplace mantel.  If anyone knows the name of the artist or the name of the painting in this picture - please let me know - my husband and I fell in love with it and have been searching ever since.  Sorry about the quality but I am hoping someone out there might know something about it. 
Just look at those heart pine floors - they are perfect for this setting!  This shot is taken from the living area with the foyer to the right and the kitchen to the left.  I love that cabinet too!  Ahhhh - sorry, I just noticed my reflection in this picture - do you see it?
Both bedrooms also have direct access to the screened in porch on the back of the cottage.  Here's the Master Bedroom. 
The master bath is very spacious and features his and her sinks, a whirlpool tub and a separate shower.
Stepping out onto the screened in porch - you have plenty of seating options and even a hammock.   There's my coffee - I was looking for that!
and at the other end - you are a couple feet away from the waves lapping upon the shore. 
This picture is from the small beach looking at the back of our cottage - you can also see Patriots Point in the background.  Look how close you are to the water's edge.
Don't feel like cooking or driving anywhere for breakfast?  Walk over to the clubhouse and lounge by the pool as you enjoy a continental breakfast. 
The Cottage's are perfect - I could have been perfectly content just staying here.  But there was shopping to be done and other fun adventures to be had...like boating with the dolphins - I am surprised I got this shot with four of them up.  I couldn't see a dang thing on my screen so I was just aiming and shooting - hoping to capture something.  
Geesh, this turned out to be a super long post.  Perhaps more another time - right now I need to start thinking about getting back to staining.

There is just so much to do in the Charleston area - I guess we need to go back again!!!  If you are planning on visiting the area, I guess it's no secret I would recommend The Cottages at Charleston Harbor.  

Once we get done with this staining project - I hope to get some of my more recent projects posted.  How about you - what have you been up to?

Have a great day!

Enjoy!!!
 
 
Hi All,

It's been a while so I wanted to share a little of what has been happening here.   Yesterday, when I got home - I  was greeted by this.   Uh-oh...
We really should have had the deck stained last year - but it never happened.  So it was at the top of our list for this year.  Only every time it has been nice enough to do it - we have had something else going on.  We have gone back and forth between doing it ourselves - or just hiring someone. 

It's not that it's a huge deck it's just that this year the horizontal and vertical surfaces all need done and since it is about twelve foot off the ground with a patio underneath - the underside also needs restained. 

Yesterday, the hubby decided to get started.  The first thing he found was one of the top boards on the rail around the deck had started to rot.  There is probably a proper name for that top board but I certainly don't know what it is.  

So I came home to a deck with no "top boards" and this waiting on the patio -  
Ohhh wow - we are finally getting the deck stained and we need the power tools  - I am sooooo liking this!!!  After a quick bite to eat we got started measuring, sawing and tightening screws and it now looks like this. 
All the top boards and hand rails have been replaced.  Now all it needs is stained.   I am excited to get it done so that we can put the furniture back and do a little decorating.   I have some little projects I want to do on the deck and patio (some are almost ready to reveal) but I have been holding off knowing the deck had to be stained - and that means the patio gets all scrambled as well.  I can hardly believe it's almost July and were just starting to stain.  But hey - it's all in the name of progress so just a couple of more days and then it is back to the fun stuff!

They are forecasting hot, hot, hot weather for at least the next week -  I want to try to get this done before it gets to hot and definitely before the 4th of July.  
 
See you soon!
Enjoy!!!
 
 
Hi All!

The month of May zipped by - much as I had expected; but it was packed with fun and adventure.  During part of my absence from posting last month, we headed for the shores of South Carolina.   Fortunately, we were ahead of the storms and had a great time!

First stop - Hilton Head Island (HHI).  This post contains some pictures from our stay at HHI.  I don't know about you, but a trip to the ocean is to me what a can of spray paint is to a piece of tired furniture -  good for renewing and refreshing me. 

I love to travel this time of the year - you are a little bit ahead of the summer crowds - allowing you to really enjoy your surroundings. 
I got the impression I wasn't the only one that enjoyed relaxing without the hustle and bustle of the crowds.  There were times you had the place to yourself - well almost.  Check this guy out - just chillin' near the pool - he's huge!
I just couldn't resist capturing some of the vibrant colors of the flowers in full bloom. 
Just look at those colors!
As luck would have it, some friends were staying nearby.  We got to spend some time together and had a lot of fun!

Curved paths lined with flowers seem to be everywhere just begging you to explore. 
Where the flowers and the palms end there is always the beach to explore.   I found an awesome piece of driftwood on one of our walks.  I was so bummed
8-(  when I discovered I had forgotten to pick it up at one of our stops along the way.  Oh well, I guess we have to go back - so I can find it!
As evenings would close in, I would look forward to starting the next day with a cup of coffee,  watching the sunrise.    Most mornings, during our visit, started too hazy to capture the actual sunrise; however,  we were able to enjoy watching it slowly burn through the haze.   Not that I am complaining...isn't it beautiful!!! 
After sunrise and breakfast we would check out some of the local shops prior to spending the rest of the day at the beach.  I will share some of my great finds with you during later posts.

Stay tuned for a future post featuring our next stop, Charleston...

Putting together this post - reminds me of the wonderful time we had, how grateful I am that we are able to travel and hoping to go back in the future (after all, I gotta find that driftwood).  

This weekend I plan on working outdoors and hopefully will have time to work on putting some of those great finds to work.  How about you?  What have you been up to?

Enjoy!!!
 
 
Hi All!

Happy Wednesday!  Hope you are having a great week.  You may have caught a glimpse of dark hardwood floors in some of my posts.  Today I would like to share the stairway transformation that became part of updating to hardwood floors.  Here's a sneak peek at how it looks today. 
Below you see how our stairway looked before we got started - navy blue carpet with lots of cherry wood. 
It was time for some updates!

Before we could get started, my husband and  I first had to find common ground in our vision of what an upgrade meant.  Our initial translations were just a tad different.

Translations:  

     To my husband upgrades meant buying new navy blue carpet to
replace the old navy blue carpet.  (mmmmm, no)

    To me upgrades meant hardwood floors, with stained treads on the stairs to match the new floors, risers painted white and a much darker handrail.
 
Once we decided on hardwood flooring (enough said) - I still had it in my head that I also wanted to update the stairway.  You might as well know - when I get something in my head I am determined to accomplish it.  I joke about Mr Niche's resistance to change sometimes - but he really is a good sport; he concedes that when it comes to decorating that's my area - - and when it's all done  - - he's happy when I'm happy.   But I still try to incorporate his desires into any major changes. 
Sooooo, one day I removed the little wooden plugs and started to sand and sand and sand and wonder what the heck I  got my self into and sand and sand and wonder and sand and sand.  Seriously - it  seemed like a gazillion spindles - okay maybe not quite a gazillion - but  there are over 50 of them!   Then after all the sanding and cleaning up  was done I started to stain and then paint.  That part of the process seemed to  go much quicker.  Sorry, no in between photos. 

At some point, I peaked under  the carpet - that is when, I slapped it back down and decided to let the treads  to the professional.  I am determined; however, I also know when to step aside  and hire someone.  Who knew - there are different types of stairs - one for  putting carpet on and the other for looking at - these were not the looking at  kind!!!

So here is what we ended up with. 
I couldn't find the right color of stain; so I ended up blending colors to match the darkest tones in the hardwood flooring.
A view from the top - that's a lot of spindles!
Another look.
Picture
Before
Picture
After
So do you have a stairway that you would love to update?  If so, maybe this can be your inspiration for getting started or maybe you've already refinished yours - either way, I'd love to hear about it. 
Enjoy!!!