Thursday, April 18, 2013

Outside: Before and After

 This blog has to end somewhere...and today is that day. There are millions and millions of things that will be done to the house and to the farm that could be blogged (and many things that we have already done that I won't ever get around to photographing...) In theory I could continue this site and have endless stories and adventures about baseball fields set up in the front yard, the garden, the hens, the long list of livestock we plan on obtaining. I could share about curtains and holiday decorations and furniture that I plan on re-doing. But I think I'm done. Anything I want to remember I will share over on the other blog. But I want to get at least one pic of the outside on here. I am ordering a blogbook today so that I will have all of these before and afters to browse through with my family and reminisce about this crazy adventure.


Honestly, it isn't fair to say this is the after pick. Except for new paint and roof, we haven't really accomplished what we want to on the front. We work on the landscaping daily and what was once a dense jungle is slowly looking better. I know it's a process, but by the end of this summer it will look so good!
We are so, so happy in this house. Every single day one of us remarks how much we love it, how happy we are here, how beautiful it is. We love it. Just last night Brad asked me, "Did you ever think growing up that you would be married to a Seminole State professor and live in this house with 3 kids?" I told him not in a million years. Because I didn't. I could have never imagined that this would be my life. I'm not sure what I thought my life would be, but whatever I thought, what it is is so much better.

The orchard.

I wasn't really that confident when we put in our orchard...but it was the very first thing I wanted to do when we decided to move back to the farm. I knew it would take 4-5 years for the trees to fruit and well, I'm not all that patient. So, we put the trees in last year before we had even moved to Seminole. We lost about 5 trees after our first winter, but all of them never really looked alive to begin with so it wasn't really our fault. :) Those have been replaced and now all 24 fruit trees are alive, blooming, and beautiful. We have peaches, plums, cherries, apricots, apples and pears. Over spring break we irrigated it ourselves, re-mulched it and then added the hand-painted barnwood signs to make it complete. I love that this is what I see every time I'm outside.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Before and After: Laundry Room

With the exception of the exterior, this is our last Before and After. We did do a few things to the outside of the house, but the landscaping is terrible and the grass is dead and I'm not sure if I even want to take an after shot right now...but we'll see. :)

The laundry room was always the one room that I knew EXACTLY what I wanted it to look like. Whenever I would sit and daydream about how to decorate the house I always started with this one. It was only logical in my mind because that is always how I've entered the house. It seemed to be Step One in my head. But I remember when we first started this process, Brad and I began there. We started emptying and packing up the house and that one room was so overwhelming. 

It's come so far. It looks exactly like I hoped it would. There are a few things I have planned for it as far as decorating goes, but I think it will do for now!

Closet #1:

Closet #2:

The school/craft area...I even have the cupboards organized!

Looking out towards the garage:

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Before and After: Office/Guest Room + Bath

This was quite the transformation. The office was a very special room for me. Growing up this was where my grandmother would take me to show me special things like the buttons she collected and things she had written. It was musty in the way a library is and had an air of importance. During family gatherings this is where the real conversations were had and where my dad and uncle would retreat to smoke and talk about smart people things. Then when my uncle moved in it became his sanctuary. The buttons that used to line the walls came down and pictures of musicians and writers went up. It became filled to the brim with books and essays and journals and there was always loud music playing and a glass of milk and vodka on the desk. It was still the place to go for good conversation and to discover collections and writings that's for sure. It's an intelligent room. A room for thinking and learning, but also for relaxing and relishing knowledge. I wanted it to stay all of these things...just look completely different:

It was such a dark room so I added quite a bit of light. Here it is in day and night:

Same wall, but different angle:

Despite the clutter, I loved that this wall was lined with interesting books. We needed a place for guests but I still wanted a library feel, not a guest room feel. So we did a murphy bed. It is built in with bookcases all around and I love how it turned out. I don't have a pic of the bed down yet, but we've used it multiple times already and it works great!

The room still needs some furnishings. I don't think I'm crazy about the desk. It was my dad's when he was growing up. I think I'll paint it first to see if I like it any better. Another chair, a rug and some more art would be nice...but honestly it's one of my favorite rooms already!
The bath also looks so much better. I have a fun wooden box I wanna hang over the toilet and I still want to paint the mirror. Oh, and a toilet paper holder will be nice, one day! :)

We are almost done with our tour!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Before and After: Task Area

Oh who doesn't love a place where all the junk in our life is collected. This little area off of the kitchen is just that. A perfect place for to-do lists, calendars, mail, keys, and other very important things can pile up so that the rest of the house looks uncluttered! In all seriousness, I don't mind having ONE junky place if everywhere else looks nice! :) And even cluttered up, this little spot is still so pretty.

I had a lot of fun with this little area. I got the countertop as a remnant at Habitat for $20 and put sheet metal up as the backsplash to have a magnet board. We did forget to cut a hole in the counter for cords before we installed it. Oh well. There is a place for my purse, my stationary, my organizational stuff, and my camera. Under the microwave is all the tupperware, kids' cups and dishes, and lunch on the go stuff. It's so perfect!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Before and After: Kitchen

I know you got a peek at the finished kitchen in the living room before&afters...but can you even believe it when you see these before pics??? Oh my, that ceiling!?!? Ugh. Ugh. Ugh. I can't even believe it. Now, I LOVE cooking in this kitchen. It is so bright and roomy. Why did anyone EVER put in drop-down ceilings? And why did these look oh so bad?

Even though we kept the lay-out and the cabinets, we really did a lot of work in this room. We put in all new appliances, the cabinetry needed a lot of repairs, the breakfast bar was revised and moved out into the living room about a foot. The countertops were all replaced, the plumbing was updated, a wine rack was built, the sink was refinished, and the ceiling was, well, ripped out!

I guess I should also point out that we replaced that linoleum backsplash! 

So, maybe I change my mind...maybe this is the most drastically improved room! How can I choose when they all were so desperate? I do know that having a beautiful new kitchen might not be the best for the waistline. I've been cooking and baking more than I ever have before and it turns out I can bake a mean pumpkin cheesecake! Still a pretty fair trade.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Before and After: Living Room

Oh man...this room was so full of junk when we began this journey. SO FULL. Furniture, books, dark and dreary curtains, a treadmill, a huge wooden boxed TV that hadn't worked in over 10 years, so much nasty carpet, and oh so much wood paneling. You get the idea. Now the whole thing feels huge. Even with the ginormous beautiful couch that we put in it, it doesn't even come close to filling the room. There is so much more light. The first few days all of the boys (meaning brad included) couldn't stop running and knee-sliding down the new floors. It gives off that you could run and slide forever. I know it won't take long before we fill it to the rim, but right now it is the room that looks the most un-finished. There just isn't a lot going on as far as decoration. We are moving in the old china cabinet tonight to serve as a bar on the empty wall next to the breakfast bar. And there will soon be a coffee table made out of pallets. :) It needs a rug, and another chair under the TV, definitely some art on the walls and some organization up around the TV. But for now, it is the perfect living room for lounging and hanging out as a family. I love that we can all be in the same room even if I'm in the kitchen! :)


Then it was almost move-in time!!!

And now:

I do not like the side tables next to the couch...the HUGE cabinet is going where that wimpy black thing is on that back wall...the toy chest needs to go or at least be accompanied by a nice big chair... The barstools will eventually have tractor seats on top. I have the seats I just need to sand and polyurethane them...and of course we need those door knobs! Yes, the door is "locked" with a jersey-knit rag. We feel plenty secure! :)
I may have a bit of a love affair with this couch and I love being able to see my huge backyard while sitting on it. It's quite a different room and it's cool to me that the fireplace is the same as it was. I love the fireplace. It was a big part of the old house and I'm happy that it's still the central part of our home. It's a reminder that everything else may look different but the foundation is the same.