Nila Dulay

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Nila Dulay
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Hidden Salmon Beach, Tacoma WA

Long time no see! I loved browsing this site & seeing all of your beautifully decorated holiday homes. Let me say, “Ya’ll have outdone yourselves!” As I was away, I had a lot of changes & in due time, I’ll try to share a bit of those changes with you. :)  I’d like to catch up and show you all my most amazing find… Salmon Beach! This is a small fishing community of 80 beach shanties from the 1920’s that’s just 2.8 miles from my house. I swear it’s the biggest secret on the Puget Sound!

Now let me tell you… I heard about SB from a coworker. It’s a gated off community but being a house stalker that was NOT going to keep me out. (Go ahead admit it… you’ve followed people in fancy gated neighborhoods to house snoop I am sure!) haha  Well… this was a little more difficult!  We had to walk around the gate, down 2 huge hills until we came to a small parking lot that the “beachers” park their cars.  From the car park was 277+ steps… I quit counting!!! That’s the ONLY way down the cliff to the homes below!

This village was Very Rustic and OLD… See that little path? That’s the ONLY walkable space behind all the homes that are on stilts.  These glassed in little reading rooms were perched along the wooded path. I can only imagine how peaceful it would be to curl up with a mug of local coffee, a kitty, and a good book… The Inspired Room of course! ?

Like I said, the place is OLD and RUSTIC, but that’s the beauty of it. It was as if we were on an enchanted island. Nothing but the smell of sea air, the sound of seagulls in the distance; and water splashing under the homes. There’s lots of OLD rusted stuff laying around here and there.  I would imagine because of how difficult it would be to carry it back up the cliff. I can’t imagine how they carry groceries! (or move in or out!)

Here are a few examples of the unique architecture I found. All the cedar was weathered,but I couldn’t get enough of it. I wanted to look at EVERY detail of EVERY house! Just look at these shingles!!!!

Another part of the rustic beach charm was the chicken houses along the path. I love me some beach chickens!!! (oh dear, the Southerner is coming out in me! LOL)

I hope you all have enjoyed this little journey with me. Now, I want to remind you… I have done ya’ll a HUGE favor because you got the tour without having to climb back up all those steps and hills to the car! 🙂
Happy 2016 XOXO

“”Autumn:The Year’s Last Loveliest Smile” 

I took this picture while driving down the road enjoying the tree lined foliage ???

I swapped out my old door mat and wreath and added a potted plant to spruce up entrance way frugally

This wreath is made around a swim noodle :) I purchased it from Etsy

I set out some acorn garland and a shiny pumpkin in the living room to give a feeling of Fall ???

The dining room isn’t finished. I have a few things I’ve yet to do. I try not to get too Fall themed. I try to only put out things I truly love to embrace the season without breaking the bank. I think I’m making some progress??

I’ve been searching for healthy Fall dinners on Pinterest and trying new recipes in the evening. 

I can’t wait to see what’s happening in your neck of woods! 

Bathroom Goodies

As you all know, Henryk and I really don’t like to pay out for help and we hold out on projects until we find high quality items for good prices. I had found this Kholer sink that’s in the above pic (Above is a Home Depot pic) on Craigslist! It was in a new construction house that hadn’t sold. Someone agreed to to buy the house, but wanted a cabinet style sink… their loss was our gain! $65.00! I went with Henryk after work, still in my hospital scrubs. When we arrived, the listing agent said… “Would you by any chance want to take the matching toilet out for us? It would be FREE.” Music to our ears! We hauled the set off and put it in our garage! Yayyy

I really wanted exposed piping in my shower/tub  and saw a ton of what I liked in the price range of $800-$1000… I bought exactly what I wanted in solid brass online for only $160.00

I found the faucet on Overstock for $89.00! I love that it had the bit of white on it to match what I bought for the bathtub and shower. It almost looks like a set without being too matchy matchy

Since we putchased tile for the floors,  I knew I wanted some heated flooring which came in from Denmark within a week! I can’t wait to be rid of the red 1970’s heat lamp in the bathroom! The fixture below will take the place of the red ugly lamp and Noooo I didn’t pay full price!  I bought this light fixture from the TV Set of GLEE now that the show is over.  $150.00 SCORE!!!!

I went with 2 sconces for the sides of the sink from PB because they were such a steal!  They looked very similar in style to the ones Rejuvination sells to go with my amazing (can you tell I love it?) new ceiling light.
Between the pedestal sink and toilet I will have this bidet sprayer. I still don’t know how people can live with wiping paper on their bum and calling it clean… lol  It has a hot/cold ability with a thermostatic mixer to get the temp set just right. Also there is nothing like a drop of peppermint oil in feminine wash to make you feel CLEAN CLEAN CLEAN… Once you get used to it, you simply can’t go without as it would be like going out without brushing your teeth. ?

More ideas of design will be posted in the coming weeks, but these are the bathroom goodies I’ve collected for now. I also need to choose a paint colour .. any ideas?! Hope you liked it!

Enjoying Summer Days

It’s now the last few weeks to open our windows and doors here in the Pacific NW and enjoy the sunshine and blue skies. Soon rain, fog and grey skies will arrive. Here at Corner Cottage we are trimming back bushes, cleaning gutters, sealing old windows & beginning to look for firewood. As nights go from mildly cool to nippy rather quickly

Annie is enjoying resting & listening to the sounds of DogTV before mom & dad begin indoor projects for fall & winter. Bathroom remodel begins in September! More pics to follow :) 

We have a few more things to do on our summer bucket list like berry picking, going to see a local lighthouse & state park & go digging for oysters which the terriers are great at ! Haha

Josie Kate just won a pet contest with approx 12,000 entrees. She received a gift card and is in the McLendons flyer this week. If you live in WA you’ll have to check your mailbox. It’s too cute! 

For those of you not in WA here is the ad. & below a pic of her at the store. This is her 4th time winning a money prize in dog competitions. she is helping earn her keep & fix up this old house :)

A huge transformation!

The feeling I tried to achieve in our living room is light and airy; but warm enough to feel cosy during the 9 months of our rainy & cold season. All the work was done by just  the two of us. Henryk is the builder, I am the painter & decorator. (We really aren’t either of those but we’d like to think of ourselves like that!):D 

Can you even imagine that we fell in love with this house when we moved in? We spent Christmas sanding the floors & eating Xmas dinner on top of a propped ironing board. LOL

I splurged and got my Octopus pillow that I wanted! Yayyy

Doesn’t MamaSita look great for 15?

So here is the rough cut fallen walnut tree that hubby decided to make into a sofa table. We saw these sofa tables in a Seattle shop and they went for about $800!

My husband sanded and re-sanded sooo many times; this table is as smooth as glass now.

I didn’t like the lamp below, so I switched it out with the one in the top pic. I think the table looks great and really makes a statement.I had scrap fabrics that I sewed the other 3 throw pillows with so I didn’t have to spend any more $$$

Annie’s pressie this week was a new toy basket. The last one was too high and she kept hitting her throat and knocking the wind out of herself. lol Bless her heart, poor little thing! This one curves on the front, its Just Right! :)

*The walls were painted Seasalt (SW), the floors sanded and stained with English Oak (Daly’s). We updated the mantel with shiplap and marble (you can see more on my previous post on how we did it) We placed a wood stove into the fireplace that heats the entire house! We bought a white painted buffet for under the TV, recycled a fallen tree into sofa table, and just as we were about to splurge on Crate & Barrel furniture… one of the MDs who works here in Seattle let me buy her entire slip covered sofa set! (Huge $ savings!!!) I purchased my rug on Dash & Albert because it’s bleach-able, hose-able and can handle the amounts of wear & tear/ muddy paws that come through Corner Cottage! Thanks for stopping by!

A Birthday Gift from Hubby

When we moved into Corner Cottage, I begged for a Smeg refrigerator. My husband gave me two reasons why it wouldn’t happen. 1) for resale purposes it doesn’t appeal toAmerican  families, especially folks who shop at SAMs & Costco and have the mentality that bigger is better 2) we would have to grocery shop too often. There went my dreams… Or so I thought ! 

Smeg now makes Small Appliances & since I’m a tea & french press coffee drinker the kettle was top on my list ! It’s so retro & cute :) hubby has agreed to by me piece by piece! Yayyy isn’t it gorgeous?


One of my favorite past times is gardening and my beautiful Joseph Bentley garden tools make my labor of love enjoyable because I think they are beautiful! *Note: Keep a garden pot full of sand, Pour on 1 bottle of motor oil into it & stir. Brush off your tools after each use and store them in the sandy oil. It keeps them sharp and rust free.

I try to ALWAYS have fresh flowers from my garden in my home. It makes even the most grey, rainy ,cold day seem delightful.

I even toss flowers as garnish when baking. This was for Josie’s b-day in April. Sure, dog’s can have a slice of Victoria Sponge.. why not? ?Instead of framing pictures, sometimes I like to make a photo transfer onto live edge wood. Then I just set them here & there in the house.

I even used an old English pub sign and photo transfered it. The Airedale & Otter Pub. How Cute! ?

IOutside my front and back doors ,I like to hang a hook and wire around my mason jars. I add flowers once or twice a week & it  brings a smile to my mailman’s day… and mine when I get home from work.

Below you can see how I hang it

Extra flowers I toss together in a vase for the kitchen counter. It makes washing up the dishes an easier task.

Cheap handmade wall hangings for the attic hallway
Hand made flowers and a little piece of velcro make the girls look a little “dressed” These are a few of my favorite things… thanks for looking.

Oh how can I forget… my Urban Fairy door along my baseboard!!! Are you able to see her shadow flying out her back door?:)

“Keep Tacoma Feared“

When my husband and I moved to WA from Florida we rented in the Seattle, area of WA.  Rent was almost 2k a month and we still didn’t live in a gated neighborhood, no pools, tennis courts etc.. We were spending so much more $ on stuff than back home in FL. The house was a new construction ,cookie cutter, with thin walls and no character. We went to MANY different areas to house hunt and were told, “Just don’t go to Tacoma, It’s the ghetto!”  When our realtor suggested we see Tacoma we right away said, “NO, Tacoma is a ghetto! The crime and violence is terrible and we’ve been told to stay away from there.” She laughed, told us Tacoma isn’t like the 80’s and early 90’s. It has a new mayor, and got cleaned up. So, she took us anyway…We were so glad she did!!!

Tacoma is Washington’s FIRST port town. Many of the homes were built late 1800’s & early 1900’s

The proximity to the water and parks and restaurants makes North T-town an ideal place to live.

We noticed right away that there was a quaint feeling in Tacoma that we didn’t get in Seattle. Yeah it’s funky and hip to say you live in Seattle. There are great malls nearby and lots of tourist attractions but Tacoma is a bit more low key for us.. we are that kinda folk I guess. One of the cool things about living in Tacoma is that we share the Puget Sound with both Seattle, Gig Harbor, & Vashon Island.  All the fish mongers deliver to Pikes Place market from the chilly Alaskan waters but actually dock their boats HERE because is MUCH less expensive than King County. Perks for us… fantstic seafood at lower prices!

If the sky went grey it’s because I took these while snooping at people’s homes in the Fall.  Of course I keep pics of random homes that don’t belong to me…. you don’t? ?

I really love seeing the flowers pop some colour in front of the grey house. So pretty! Oh and look…a Toyota! You see… living in a house like this is do-able in Pierce county. Seattle… don’t even think about it!

So ya’ll know Bing Crosby right… the… “I’m dreaming of a White Christmas”.. the “Road Movies” with Bob Hope…
Anyhoo.. He was BORN in this house! (the one above) Yup, another piece of Tacoma’s awesome history. He has a rose bush named after him in our local rose garden

I love double porches… reminds me of being back home. You can take a girl out of the South, but you can’t take the South out of the girl!
I like the Victorian below. Needs a roof cleaning and some paint but it could be perfect!
Btw, if ya’ll hear trash talk about Tacoma, go ahead and say it’s ghetto. We like to keep the best kept secret in WA feared. ? We don’t have loads of people moving here. It’s quite, we don’t sit in loads of traffic, we have small town farmers markets and botiques. We are 38 minutes to downtown Seattle and hop skip and a jump to Portland, Oregon. Gig Harbor looks like Coastal Living magazine & is a 5 min drive across the bridge. Vashon Island is one of Washington’s last remote islands. It’s a 10 min ferry ride from our home. Hubby and I enjoy going for a morning breakfast on the island and collecting driftwood on the EMPTY beach.

Oh… the PUBLIC SCHOOL district ain’t that shabby either! Hogwarts! hee-hee!

Pretty good view from the football field.

Hope you all enjoyed it and that it opened your eyes to the beauty of Tacoma. ?

Thanks for looking! ?

A walk in nature

One of my favorite spots to walk the dogs is through “5 mile Drive” We always begin our hike in the rose gardens. Just walking under them makes me feel so full of life!

Once in the garden I take my time reading name plaques of the roses and each year I find my “Favorite” species and order it for my own garden. This is a winner for this year & I can’t wait to plant it at home!

After I’ve had my fill of these beauties, I usually let Josie and Annie (my 2 fur kids) cool off through a shaded walk through the woods, along the cliffs and down to the water

We head out a little too late in the morning and missed seeing a family of 7 Orca! We hope to have better timing next time. 
The “Narrows Bridge” in the distance suspends From Tacoma to Gig Harbor. The old bridge, that fell in 1940, remains beneath the waters. Today, its skelaton sits below in the base of the water and is home to the world’s largest octopus population that could grow to 600lbs! I found it very interesting to hear that there was an Octopus Wrestling Festival in our town until the 1960’s! lol I am thinking of getting an octopus throw pillow for the sofa, but I am having to convince the hubby that it’s cute. haha It’s cute… right?

Baking on a Rainy Spring Day

Today I lit a small fire in the wood stove to get the chill out of the air. I decided it felt like a day for a hot cup of coffee and healthy muffins. Rain gets me wanting comfort food! (That’s a bit of a problem since it rains about 300 days a year in this part of the country! lol )
I left the back door open and listened to the rain gently falling off the roof. Cleaned a bit and caught up on laundry. I just took it easy & worked at a leisurely pace… sorting papers, folding laundry… It felt so good to just appreciate the simplicity of being home. It feels to refreshing to clean and look around and see how tidy things can look with a little bit of effort.

These are my Morning Glory Muffins made with ground buckwheat, coconut oil, Greek yogurt, fresh berries and mashed bananas . They turned out so delicious!