Welp.

Well, would you look at that.  It is almost December!!

So, I have a question for everyone….what’s everyone stance on Christmas decorations?? Specifically Christmas trees.

Not holiday trees either.

I am not hugely religious, but I have a wicked old-school traditional streak that runs through me.  It’s hard to modify the name of one my of favorite things ever.

I personally am addicted to Christmas trees.

I just returned back to school from my Thanksgiving break.  Over the course of my 5 day (really actually only 4 days…) I managed to decorate a total of 5 trees, 4 of which were at my house.  Friends and I were discussing it this morning and it is kinda crazy.  I don’t have holiday parties, I don’t really entertain…but I LOVE the house being decorated and enjoying the lights!

In years past, I would spend Black Friday decorating the house.  However, I knew that with everything, I should start to break it into chunks.  The themes of these two are “Ice Queen” &  “Thin Blue Line”.

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Then the big one got done!  I found my new little tree stand at my fav Hobby Lobby.  Don’t be like Momma D. and point out that the plaid doesn’t line up in this picture!

Love you Momma D.!

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Just for the record….this is the kind of chaos that ensues when I decorate…plus you can see the little kitchen tree, even though it’s not done!

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Then throw in Momma D’s tree for more fun!  Excuse the look on my face, it was after Turkey Dinner and I had a sore throat and was TIRED!

I even have two little trees in my classroom!  I can’t get away from them.  One of my life mantras is to do all the things that make your heart happy and Christmas trees make my heart happy!

So, do me a favor peeps!  Share your pics!  Add your comments!

Most of all, do what makes your heart happy!

Peace out peeps.

 

The Wall.

 

So, way back in March, I wrote a post about resolving the annoying bird problem by fixing my ceiling in my closet.  I also hinted at my next big project.

HA!

Well, needless to say.  I forgot about that promise to fill you in…and I am SURE you have been sitting on the edge of your seat since then!!  I mean, who wouldn’t be???

This is where I left all y’all hanging.  Truly.  CLIFF HANGER.

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Let me fill in the back story here a little bit.

This wall is in the craft room.  It was built when they installed the upstairs furnace by some very creative and talented carpenters.  When I moved into the house, I immediately wanted to remove it. It was very elaborate.  It had a screen door installed to access the furnace “room” and a dropped ceiling.   It was a true work of art and craftsmanship…as you’ll soon see!

However, before I got crazy, I did talk to a furnace guy.

He informed me that the only thing that might be up there would some of the duct work running to the attic.

Crap.

So, the above picture was my trial run.  Before just destroying the wall, I wanted to make I knew exactly what I was getting into!

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Apparently, the only thing all of this “wall” was hiding was a massive amount of dirt and cobwebs!

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This lame little map gives you a SLIGHTLY better idea of the design of this wall and how it affected the room.  The bold line indicates the actually crappy wall.

You would never believe I was an art teacher based on the above image.  Please don’t hold it against me!  lol!

So, with the good news that there was nothing stopping my progress….bring it on!

Out came the sawzall, the shop vac, the drill, crowbars of various sizes….and pretty much anything else I deemed worthy of this demo!

This was the first big change and frankly my favorite!  With this STUPID wall gone, the amount of natural light that now floods the hallway is amazing!  You can really see the dropped ceiling in this picture and how “cave-like” it made the hall.

Now, it might be hard to tell in this grouping, these walls were built from rough OLD stock wood of some sort.  There was a TON of wood used in this little wall, with not real rhyme or reason to it.

Little by little.  Chunk by chunk.   I managed to get 97.3% of it removed and carted outside to the burn pile (no small feat if you know my steps!!)

As with any project around my house, there are always surprises!  I mean, what a perfect place for a hook…just missing the latch!  How about those lag bolts???  I can’t lie, they might end up staying.  They are securing that board into the wall of the house (which is solid brick) and as dad says, “If you take them out, the house might fall down.”

Plus, they would make for a great conversation piece for the rest of EVER!

So, as of today….this is how the room looks…

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Ok, that’s also a total lie…it’s cleaner than that!

I do love the original ceiling color in this room!  Although, it won’t be that color this next time around.  Thank you again to $9.00 mistints….you’ll see hopefully before the end of the year what it will be!

I need to finish a SMALL amount of demo (hence the 97.3% reference above).  Then rebuild enough to frame in a door for the furnace and WA-LAAAAA!!

Just look at all of the light and space I was able to add back to the room!  It was well worth the demo!

Until next time.

Peace out peeps.

another day. another closet.

Well, hello everyone!

Missed y’all.  I know, it doesn’t seem like it, because I just fall off the face of the earth for weeks at a time.  But yet, I am here…doing well…and I hope you’re all doing well also!

Since I moved into the house, I have had this little bird issue.  Starlings.  Oy.

So annoying.

Because the eaves have not been repaired yet, (I know, right??  It’s like what the hell have I been doing!) the starlings love to build their nests in there.  I do not understand why they can’t just be happy with the barn, but oh well.  However, since they build in the eaves, each spring I have had an instance with birds in the house.  I can’t lie, each time has shaved at least a year off of my life.

I knew where they were coming in.  There is a hole in my closet, rather WAS a hole in my closet.  However, I thought they were going up into the attic and then down through the hole in my closet.  Well, a couple of weeks ago, I had the morning from hell and had two of them in the house.  The worst part was, I had already been in EACH of the rooms they were in.  So, when I strolled nonchalantly back in those rooms as part of my normal morning routine, I was scared to death.

Here is a little video of it.  I apologize for the swearing in advance.

 

After that fun little morning, I decided it was time to tackle the hole.

See, what was alarming was I had known there was the hole that I could see.  But there was this nasty shelf in the way.  Until I demolished that, I had no idea that you could actually see daylight.  The birds were not actually ever making it into the attic.  If they missed their nest by a couple of inches, they were instantly in the house.

The good news, I noticed my room was quieter once the ceiling was fixed!  Which brings me to an entirely different topic…

Do any of you living in old homes (that are being restored) find themselves compromising living standards that most normal people would balk about??

Anywho…back on track.

With a new piece of drywall securely in place (and now with the new roof, leaks are gone and the eaves will hopefully be done this summer, so that will be the end of this mess) and me sporting one of my fav Christmas presents from the best bro ever!  I was ready to paint and put it back together.

 

Another fabulous mistint find for $9.00 and some shoe organization and WHAM!! No, the irony is NOT lost on me that when the house was built, the inhabitants were probably lucky to have one pair of shoes and now I am using this closet just for shoes.

That has been an ongoing collection….don’t judge.

I have also decided to paint the craft room closet this color instead of the bright blue/green…because I have enough left and I like it better.  I really hate that damn blue/green mishap from the original stair project… read here if you’re brave enough to relive that hot mess.

In other news….hint, hint to the next big project….

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I love doing my own stunts.

No birds were hurt in this post.  Every single one made it out alive.

Have a fabulous week and remember….be kind.  It ain’t worth the drama to be any other way.

Peace out peeps.

 

Winter Break.

Good morning!

So, about three weeks ago, I started my winter break.  A family friend posed the question to Momma D., “So, what is Lyndsey going to get into over break this time??”

The answer is simple…absolutely nothing.

Well, my version of nothing.  I still managed to tackle a fairly decent To Do list.  I started with finally putting some attention into the craft room closet.  It was in desperate need of some repair work and a coat of paint.

Funny story.

Being the frugal person I am, I totally thought I had a gallon of white paint leftover from something.  I was so excited!  I’ll finish it up on that silly closet! So, I get all of the repair work done and I am ready to paint.  I dig out the gallon and crack it open ready to go….it’s a solid block of paint.  I guess leaving it in the garage to freeze wasn’t a good idea.

Oops.

So, remember back when I tried painting the hallway the first time and that horrible jade/teal weird color.  Yep, you guessed it!

After much patching, painting and some new shelves….I am pretty pleased with how it turned out.  Obviously, it could always be better.  But this is a definite improvement.

 

The other big project I have been working on over the last couple of months is a kitchen island.

Mind you, this idea stemmed from wanting a dishwasher and this seemed to be the easiest solution.  Back in July, I set up the ironing board with one of my doors laying across it to see if I liked the “concept”.

My dad officially thought I lost my mind.

Seven months later, I have got a pretty good thing going.  It’s still not done, knowing that I need to finish trimming it out and finish the “storage” side.  But I can’t lie, I am in love.

The best part is, remember this piece of wood?

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That came from this scary basement?

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Well, officially….that piece of wood has become my kitchen island.  This is the progress so far.

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Once it is completely done with trim and everything, I hope to write a blog post about just this project.  But I was too excited to not share the progress thus far!

Ok friends, stay warm out there!

Peace out peeps.

Damn.

I crack myself up.

Seriously, I have NO idea where time goes.  I am also painfully aware that almost every post references this point.  But geez….it’s OCTOBER!!!!

Well, I have been a busy little bee.  I am back in school (which greatly affects my project time…waiting to win the lotto!) and have been utilizing every Sunday for the last 6 weeks or so to wrap up projects at the house.  We have been in a moderate drought here in NE Ohio, which although is terrible for vegetation, has been wonderful for painting on the house!

As of this past Sunday, I THINK I am done with all of the outside painting.

**Minus cleaning one window and putting a second coat on one door. **

I added a few extra projects…so overall, I am thrilled where the 2017 work season is ending up!

One of the addon projects was painting the exterior of the laundry room. This is the newest part of the house, built sometime around 1910 and was definitely an eye sore.

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There are definitely lotto dreams for this little room, but for the time being, it just needed a little makeover!

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Sometime this summer, dad also donated me his fav stool.  I ALMOST feel guilty, but I love that little thing and it comes in so handy!  It’s been in the family for YEARS.  I grew up remembering Gramps using it in the shop.

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Honestly, I still can’t believe Dad parted with it.  I don’t think he would appreciate me sharing this pic, but it’s one of my favs.  Mom, don’t tell!

Anywho, I digress.  So, the exterior is all painted.  This isn’t the most current pic, but you get the idea.  The rain moved in and I haven’t been able to snap a better pic.  That upstairs window is painted now too,  you’ll have to take my word for it!

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I also managed to cram a crapload of Fall decor into my overused, tired Mazda to decorate for the season.  Hands down the best car I have ever owned.

So, thank you again for reading along the journey!  It’s been crazy.  But with the darkness setting in and winter coming…I hope to write a little more!

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Peace out peeps.

A new hat.

After 160 years, my old girl got a new hat.

Now, it might not have been the hat some of you would have chosen.  But it is a new hat, that doesn’t leak and makes my insurance company happy and met my budget.  So, therefore, peanut gallery…hush.

On this past Monday, all hands were on deck from the most wonderful roofing company ever.  They started really early and I was shocked at how fast the progress went.

I was very sad to see the slate go.  But no worries, they were able to save me quite a few pieces and I plan on doing something wonderful with them.  Once again, peanut gallery…the slate was literally was at a point where it was crumbling before it was even came off the roof.

Also, if I win the Powerball, I will have a slate roof put back on ASAP.

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Out of all of the slate on the roof, this was my favorite side.  No idea why, but this was the only portion of the entire main roof that had this slate on it in this style.  It’s also a great picture, because that chimney and lightening rod are gone now too!

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The big start!

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This was one of the coolest things I learned through the process.  How when they built the house how they laid the planking for the roof.  Overall everything was in really good shape under the slate!  ALWAYS GOOD NEWS!

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I was like a kid in a candy store watching all the fun progress throughout the first day!  I gave the driver a lot of credit, he backed up the really steep driveway on my very busy road!

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This was the morning of Day 2, you can see the main roof is finished!  I can’t lie, putting the accent strip in was a big debate.  But now that  it’s  done, I LOVE it!  It’s just enough of a throwback to how the slate had a pattern in it.  Also, my roofer, “A”, was kind enough to point out that they were even going to make sure they were the same all the way around.

Gee, thanks!

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By the end of Day 2, all of the work was done.  The laundry room on the back also has a new roof (including it’s own sexy little strip that you can only see from the door in the hallway upstairs) and the biggest change was the front porch that magically disappeared.

Peanut gallery…it will be restored…and this time correctly…and hopefully on both sides!

So, all in all, another big week around here.

My first day with kiddos is next Wednesday and the big goal is to have the windows 100% done before that point.  I can’t say how thrilled I am that I hadn’t just finished and cleaned all of those windows before they took the slate off.  I would have cried watching all of the dust float all over my clean windows.  So, now scrap and clean and finish up windows and the big projects for 2017 will be done!!

Peace out peeps.

And that’s a wrap…

Dog-Days

AHHHHH!!  One of the things I will never be able to understand in this world is how fleeting time is.  Truly.  They weren’t lying when they said that the older you get….

Not to mention, it’s sad how much time I spend talking about time flying by.  Hmmm, ponder that.

Monday, I start back for the 2017-2018 school year and I can’t believe it.  I will be entering my 13th year teaching, can’t really believe that either.

But what I can believe is that I didn’t get my entire summer to do list done.  BUT, I am very close!  There will be a post coming in the next two weeks on the big window reveal…I think you’re gonna love it!  I do!

Also, the new roof is coming.  I am still really sad about losing the slate.  But I am going to be making sometime special with some of the salvageable slate to connect it to the house.

There is also a surprise project that I threw on the list last minute (no wonder I am not done!!).

So, until all these little updates wrap up…check out my Etsy shop.  Fall is right around the corner, which means…CROCHETING will be happening! Not to mention, Christmas is right around the corner.

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Have a fabulous Saturday.  You’ve earned it.

Peace out peeps.

 

Hallway Debacle.

As usual, months before I get a break from school, I start planning out what projects I am going to tackle.  Nothing was different for Spring Break.  Over break, the biggest project I wanted to get a handle on was the upstairs hallway.

I have officially done nothing upstairs.  Primarily because I literally didn’t know where to start.  It just seems like an endless stream of work up there.

But I knew I needed to.  I also knew that once I did, I would feel much better.

So, I start planning and hit Pinterest hard for some inspiration.

I first fell in love with this idea.

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But I also loved this.

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So, I was faced with the challenge of combining these two concepts with colors that I wanted.  I have been trying to put up a picture rail in every room I have done, so I was so excited when I realized I could make the whole hallway upstairs a bit of a gallery with the two tone paint.

YES!

Here we go!

First was dealing with the challenges of painting on steps.  I needed scaffolding.  Do you think we could find the community scaffolding between the 3 houses that make up the “community”?

Sure couldn’t.

Well, not until about 2 weeks after I was done.  Thanks J-Town for that text.

But being the resourceful girl that I am, I managed to make it work!IMG_20170330_085204576

The one thing I always under estimate in a project is the repair work.  Especially in this old house.  I mean, let’s be honest, you could literally repair forever…and never get it perfect.  But I decided a long time ago, that I didn’t want it perfect.  I want the house to look nice and that it has been loved, but it’s scars….they are a part of it’s history.  So, I like the imperfections…plus, I don’t have that kind of patience.

In my head, I knew I wanted to go for more “period” colors, vibrant, strong and bold.  I knew I wanted to have a dark brown picture rail and that I wanted to be able to use the hallways as a gallery of sorts for all kinds of fun stuff.    So, with all of that in mind, I put together my palette of colors and got started.  I have to admit, when I first started I was super excited.  As I continued, I became progressively more and more nervous.

By the end of the work…I was flat out scared.  I even tried painting the runs of the steps, thinking it would help.  I couldn’t even bring myself to put a second coat of teal on to cover the patch work.  But knowing how much work had been invested, I decided to live with it for a few days before I made the final call.

Three days later, I couldn’t handle it anymore.  I tried to tell myself that once the picture rail was installed, it would be ok.  But it wouldn’t.  I literally could not handle it.

It was the Sunday before I went back to school and I was back at Home Depot that morning buying more paint.

I cried to Momma D.  I had never been that off in color selection.  Granted, I have been getting more risky in my old age, but all of them always turn out so cool.

Not this time.

Horrible.

So much teal that it almost caused a negative physical reaction.

So, I ended up staying the same color family as the ceiling, just a few shades lighter.  I have to say, I love it a lot more!   Plus, the neutral wall will work a lot better to use the hallways as a gallery.  I still got my teal steps…which makes my heart happy.  So, now that I have been living with it for a month, it’s time to finish the rest of the hallway.

Did I mention that the hallway is really big?

Baby steps.

One month until Summer Break….no worries, the planning is in full swing!  Lots of things hopefully will be getting done.  That is unless I decide to spend the summer swinging in the hammock.

Yeah, right.

Ok friends…have a fabulous Saturday!

Peace out peeps.

Buttoning up the Old Place.

Hey peeps!

So, I haven’t died.  But it is the holiday season.  Between preparing for the holidays, making stuff and working on the house, every minute seems to just evaporate.  It’s unbelievable!

Since I moved into the house, I have been researching and reading a lot about interior storm windows and what to do with these old windows of mine.  Primarily since last winter when I took this video and realized that I might have an issue with some of the windows in the house. Or I had a real poweful ghost.  No wonder the orchid died.

 

Shockingly, the most common advice to owners of historic homes to KEEP the original windows whenever possible!!!  I know, it seems odd.  But many research studies have been done that with proper repairs and use of storm windows, the original windows can be just as efficient as a modern thermopane.  Not to mention, you get to continue to enjoy the beauty of the historic window and not add to your carbon footprint by throwing the old ones away. After I decided that I wanted to try to save the windows, I found this AMAZING company called Indow Window and I was blown away!

I fell in love.  Head over heels.

They will build a custom fit interior storm window for your historic homes.  They even have a design that will reduce sound by 76% in your home!  Sign me up!! But then they came back to me with a quote and needless to say, the sound proofing version I was interested in came back at $500 a window.  So, yep…slightly out of my current budget.

This let me to digging around…and I found so many people who were in similar situations! After lots of searching, this was what I liked the best.

With their video as a guide, I started making my own storm windows about 6 weeks ago.  I have been working on them here and there and I am proud to say the entire downstairs is done.  Which means, only 15 more windows to go!  lol!

So, my process….

Because I am such an awesome planner, when I went to Lowe’s, I was so excited about starting this project that I purchased a ton of material and then realized that I had to figure out how to fit in my poor little car.

No worries!  I was able to shift and drive safely!

Once home, I set up and started to work out the template I wanted to use.  I have access to all of the fun tools they used in the video,  but not at my house.  So, I modified the frames to the tools that I had accessible.

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I initially set up and was working on them outside, but it has definitely gotten chilly enough that I had to move the factory line into the Girl Cave.

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The process goes like this.

I build the wood frames.  Apply the pull tabs.  Line the edge with the weather proofing foam.  Once I finish those steps, I take the frame to the actual window and fit it in.  Then once it’s in place, I apply the plastic to the frame and finish trimming it out the plastic and using the hair dryer on it.

I have to say that so far, I really am impressed with them.  They take a minimal amount of time and they are a fairly low-cost project.  Since one of the goals of them is to be reusable, hopefully, they will buy me enough time until I can get the fancy ones.  I even feel like they help muffle the sound from the road.  Which makes me feel very optimistic when I can get to the point of putting the Indow Windows or something similar in.

So, for those of you looking to amp up the weather proofing in your home, you might want to consider this project!  There are tons of videos and articles on windows!  I will keep you posted on my utility bills for the future and if I see an improvement!

Peace out peeps.

Storm Cellar Pt. 3,408

Yep.

You read that right.

That’s what it FEELS like.

The longest project ever.

BUT, we are most definitely on the homestretch!

This week, we poured the final portions of concrete to make the landing “pad” at the bottom of the steps.  We also started the repair work on the one step that had suffered so much water damage that it had actually turned back into sand.

Last Sunday, we had another work day at the house. Mr. T, Dad and I all got to play in concrete!  **I swear that I work on these projects…I just been voted official documentation person…so sometimes it’s hard to document myself!**

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You can see from this angle, that second step down that was so damaged.  We were able to concrete in a cap to help close the distance between the steps!  It’s still not finished out at this point, but it will be in 2017.

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**Please note..**

I started this blog post LAST WEEK!!!  This is embarrassing that sometimes accomplishing the little things can feel like climbing Mr. Everest!

The reason I am pointing this out is…

We have been living in torrential rain all week long.  Which translates to this, all of the improvements are WORKING!!  The basement is dry!!!  The drain is working.  The gutters are working.  The french drain is working!  It’s a BEAUTIFUL day in rainy Ohio when this happens in my world!

So, tomorrow…last work day for this project is scheduled.  We are planning on building the door frame and door.  I will be working on dragging the rest of the crap that has been down there out and covering that drain.  All said and done…one step closer to a decent, not scary, functioning old basement!  YES!!!

By next year….my basement entrance will be as cool as this!

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I even have the matching yellow hose!

Next week, painting class!!!  So….lots happening this week.  Meaning…probably not gonna blog. (if you’re local and interested, click here!)

I just like to keep it real around here!

Oh, and I finally did it this week!  I pulled the cranky yellow horse out of semi-retirement! For your viewing enjoyment!

Peace out peeps!