The Making of Mantels / Appeasing my Mantel Envy!



00_




A couple of weeks ago, I hinted on our Facebook Page about the weekend project we had in the works. I mentioned that I was all done dealing with the ‘mantel envy’ I have had going on, for years now. You know, mantels, the shelving surface that many homes have over their fireplace?  Many creative homemakers have great fun decorating their mantels for various seasons and holidays, switching it up all of the time. It just wasn’t fair.
We don’t have a fireplace, anymore. Years ago, before the little-house to big-house renovation, we had a built in coal and wood fireplace insert, with a brick mantel.… Read More

Doors to Storage. (Literally.)







We’re guessing many of you love to see little home transformations, and creative spaces, as we do, and that’s just what we hope to share with you today.  The photos we share will likely explain what we have done. But if you have just a bit of time, grab a drink of choice, and let us amuse you with a little more about the birth of this project.

We’ve heard some people try to ‘ keep up with the Jones’. But that’s not our style.  I’m sure they’re really nice peeps, and all. But they don’t run in our circles, and even if they did, I doubt we’d want or care what they have, even if we could  afford a thing.  No, our wants and needs are really quite simple.Read More

Mailbox Tub Garden







 

We are still very much working on our long-term front garden-yard plans, and we’re far from completion.  A little each year, as we need to roll, but we’ve enjoyed the planning and the progress along the way.  We always wish we were further ahead than behind, but that’s the way it goes.








Our mailbox out front by the street, has really been looking like it needs some sprucing up, for some time.  Last year, we just planted some flowers around the post, in what sandy and rocky sloped dirt was there.  But because our front yards are our garden, and the general landscape plan is not completed yet, it didn’t look so nice.  The crabgrass that grows in the sandy dirt, spread into flower bed, and it just didn’t look clean.Read More

An Old Ladder, With New Purpose







In addition to our continual progress of finishing the inside of our home since our major house reconstruction, we’ve had a continually growing list of ideas for smaller projects around our home.

One of them has involved this ladder inside our home.









It has been right here where you see it, every since we bought our home in 1995.   What has changed a lot, is almost everything around the ladder.  For one thing, at the foot of this ladder, where you now see French doors to our sun room, was a brick hearth, to a black iron coal stove, that was built into a brick wall as a fireplace of sorts.… Read More

A Bathroom Mini-Improvement

Back in 1995, when we were searching for our first home to purchase, there were many unique features about this house, that gave us reason to fall in love with it, and seal the deal. The loft, that overlooked the living space (now gone) w/ the ladder that led to it, the kitchen floor cabinets with roll out shelves, the bathroom with the separate vanity area, the bubble shower door on a central turn-style pole (which proved to be inefficient for bathing toddlers…and later, teaching children how to shower…..but it’ll be going back on soon.) for the steam shower, and these built in bathroom shelves………….… Read More

Our Home Transformation – Our Dream: Final Part


IMG_0157


Some rain came that late afternoon, as the guys hurriedly tried to get the house covered.  Most of the second floor was completed at this point, with the exception of {A}’s room and the stairwell.


IMG_0161



The next morning the crew showed up, took the tarps off and got back to work.   They started on the new cathedral ceiling, and the walls and roof of {A}’s room.

As the day wore on, more rain was coming.  The guys got plywood on the new roofs and tar-papered it.  At the end of the work day, they re-tarped the completed second floor.

But the rain came that night, REALLY hard.  A RAIN STORM.  The house was really not sealed in a 100%, with gaps still between plywood and open walls.… Read More

Our Home Transformation – Our Dream: Part III

Before we move on to some real ‘action’, we wanted to take you back inside for a minute….


K


……re-posting this image, because we want to draw your attention to the ladder you see on the left.  Now, as you know by now, we had had this little 2 bedroom home, and found ourselves in the very blessed but unexpected position, of triplets joining our family.   So, we made do – made the most with what we had – did whatever worked.  So we (Michael & I), gave up our bedroom.  That became the triplets room for the time being. We actually had our bed in the main living area, for awhile.  It worked out nicely for me, with feeding the babies and all.  :  )  But it was a TAD awkward when the in-laws came to visit.… Read More

Our Home Transformation – Our Dream: Part II


C


As we dreamed and brainstormed about what would be an ideal home layout for our family, Michael really began by drawing floor plans. We knew we wanted a 4 season sunroom.  We also wanted an area off of the kitchen that could accommodate a big long table, for eating and schooling, and also floor cabinets for all of our schooling books, supplies and tools.  So we decided a room along the back of the house, accessible from the kitchen would be ideal.

Here is Michael’s floor plan of our existing home, at the time, with the 2 rooms we wanted, added:


D


Now, in looking at the floor plan above, what is marked as an office was {A}’s existing room.  For anyone who has ever added rooms to their home, you may know that sometimes when you are working with the town, you just need to call some rooms something else.… Read More

Our Home Transformation – Our Dream: Part I

Anyone love Extreme Home Makeover??  Yes??  Well that’s what you’re going to get in these posts.  The only difference is, we have to pay for ours!  LOL.

We mentioned that we would be having a lot to share in this section of  ‘Homestead – Home & Gardens’.   Gardening is something very new to us this year, but I like to think we started off with a bang.  I haven’t shared much of that yet, although I will be soon now, because that began a front yard transformation.  But the backdrop of that, is our house, which also was majorly transformed. So I just didn’t want to put the cart before the horse, so to speak.  One reason being, for those of you that will continue to follow us in the coming years (please?), it will be so fun for you to have watched our homestead grow and change  SO much, from the beginning!… Read More

Paintin' Seashells and Movin' Dirt!





Yesterday was a typical September Friday, here on the farm.  Ok, we really don’t live on a farm, but I like to pretend we do. : )

After all of our school work was done, the kids really wanted to paint some of the oodles of seashells and treasures they collected on a long seashore excursion they had gone on the day before. We just love these September days…working in new school books, and spending many hours of our free time outdoors, exploring, imaging, learning and creating, (sometimes working) where the unbearable heat is now just a memory, and we can sense those beautiful Autumn days coming down the road.… Read More