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.

I think I have found my niche.

Hey y’all!

So, how is everyone on this gorgeous Saturday morning?

Last weekend, I hosted another painting class at the house…and oh we are starting to have so much fun!

I think I have found my niche!

So, when I started the classes, I wanted to do a variety of classes and I can’t say that I still won’t.  But the masses have spoken.
They like to paint.

A lot!

So, now when it comes to the painting classes, I basically let everyone tell me what THEY would like to paint!  That way, I know for certain, that they are taking something home with them that they will LOVE!

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I have got to tell you…I love how creative and talented everyone is!  It’s so exciting to see everyone work and encouraging each other to make such wonderful things!

 

Not to mention, everyone gets to serious and into it!

Next class up…we will be painting on glass!  Check out the Facebook event if you’re local and are interested!

Oh and memories…One year ago this weekend was the Open House party at the house!

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See, organized and AMAZING!

So…as usual…thanks again for all of your support!

Peace out peeps.

 

One Year. Damn.

Hey everyone!

So, this week, I celebrated the 1 year anniversary of living in the house.  Trust me, my Facebook newsfeed has been blowing up daily.

I can remember all of those feelings of that naive girl from a year ago.

So much enthusiasm.  So much fear.  So much cluelessness.

That isn’t even a word, but you know what I mean.

I was leaving a home that I LOVED and tackling this beast of a century home.  Some thought I was crazy (some still do).  Some couldn’t imagine what would possess me (I still wonder myself).  Some thought it was the coolest thing EVER (Momma D…that’s you!).

But regardless, one year later, I am still here.  Standing.  Even better…so is the house!

So, I would like to dedicate this post to the journey.  Some before and after pics.  A quick recap.  Because frankly, reminding myself of the progress is sometimes the only thing that keeps me going!

Obviously, one of the biggest changes to the house was the entrance from the driveway.

It’s really hard to get a good feel…but oh the changes!  The entrance way, the gutters are gone, the tree is gone!  Still needs a lot done, but definitely working on shining the old beauty up!

The pumpkin is about the only thing that is the same.  Of course, that cute chick is still around too!

For some reason, as I think back, I don’t feel like I really shared a lot of the work that was done in the back.  Maybe one snow day, I’ll catch up on this project!

So, for everyone has been watching and reading along the year…thanks.  You may not realize it, but the support is wonderful!

Here’s to one more year!  I hope to post more and I hope you enjoy this journey as much as I do!

 

 

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!

 

 

 

 

 

House Updates.

Well, I bet you were starting to think I had kicked back and was reading a book, enjoying a nice cup of tea.

Wrong.

Progress has still be occurring.

Slow…but occurring.

So, big news. Garden 2.0 has been started for 2017.  I know.  I am nuts. After holding a board meeting, the board (mom) and I decided that it would be best to expand.  Now, this does not necessarily mean I will be planting MORE.  But it does mean that I will be giving myself more room between plants to work.

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Which really means, I’ll be giving the weeds LOTS of extra space!

However, I am really excited about the expansion.  My compost bin will now be within the parameters of the garden.  I will…of course…be adding a couple of new plants.  Overall, I think it will just give me a lot more room to enjoy!

In other news….the grapevines!!!!

One of the most exciting things I found when I moved in last fall was the grapevines.

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They are very overgrown and a big bushy mess…but they did produce grapes!  I was a little late in picking them, but I was still able to get enough gathered to make some AMAZING grape jelly!

I am going to skip all the pictures in the middle (mostly because I didn’t take that many…lol!).  But I will say this, I now believe that I will never be able to enjoy store bought grape jelly again!

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It was definitely a labor of love….but oh my.

So. Worth. It.

Wrapping up this crazy weekend was a BIG day at the house!

We had a work day scheduled with Mr. T and Dad anyway (I’ll be posting an update on the storm cellar soon….we are on the home stretch!)  But then I was able to get someone down to come down and take the gutters off.  Plans are also in the works for what the new roof is going to be and possible window upgrades!  Thing LONG TERM…but it’s nice to know the options…especially in regards to the windows.

So, before an after!  The falling apart gutters and dilapidated gutters are GONE!!  I know it doesn’t seem like much, but it’s one baby step to the entire process of bringing this house back.

Mr. T thinks she’s sexy.

I think she’s getting sexier the more we get down to the basics.  I literally CAN NOT wait to get all of the trim cleaned up and painting white again.

This is going to be a very long and slow process…but little milestones like today keep me hopeful!

Peace out peeps.

 

Panic…I mean…Fall is in the Air

Morning everyone!

So, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I normally LOVE Fall.  The only part I historically don’t enjoy is the loss of sunlight. But the rest of it….bring it on!

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This year is a little different.

Now, I see the beautiful leaves falling to the ground and a myriad of thoughts run through my brain.

Then the panic starts.

I feel…more than usual…that there will NEVER be enough time.

So, the To Do list comes back in full force.

  1. Prepare for the invasion (mice,bugs and critters…oh my!)

**Speaking of invasions…what the hell is this???**

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  1. Built a basement door (that might help with the invasion)
  2. Plant bulbs and final push in the flowerbeds for the year (because I am already envisioning the beauty for next year!)
  3. Garden…oh my garden…you will be bigger and better for next year (if I have time).
  4. Order the bare root trees to prep for planting in the spring (big goals to get some new trees started!)
  5. Classes…so many options for Fall fun!
  6. Enjoy pumpkin everything.

The next class at the house is all set up scheduled…but dear lord, it’s only two weeks away!

See what I mean.

Pure panic.

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So, with that being said.  Does anyone else feel this kind of pressure this time of year?

Oh, and if there wasn’t enough.  I think I am going to make concord grape jelly tomorrow.  I think you could get drunk from the grapes ripening right now!  Too many to just waste!

Peace out peeps.

 

 

Mini Pallet Recap!

Oh. My. Goodness.

In the last 48 hours here in Ohio, I have felt the first signs of Fall.  The crispness in the air, the golden leaves laying on the grass, the first head cold of the season, the snakes moving into the dining room…

So, last night, I slept almost 9 hours.  Whether it was because it was finally perfect sleeping weather or the fact that I was literally exhausted, it was wonderful!

Last Sunday, I hosted a great mini-pallet painting class at the house.  I really can’t express to anyone, besides my ever-patient mother, how stressful having the classes can be.  Between prepping for the class, cleaning house, making food and then teaching….there are MANY moments I wonder if it is worth it.

But then, everyone shows up, the laughter begins, the creativity starts and it’s just wonderful to see everyone have so much fun making things!

With being back to school for the last couple of weeks, prepping for the class was even more challenging!  But, it all got done and I think they turned out great!

I started by cutting apart pallets to make these mini-pallet canvases to paint.  It was a labor of love to say the least.  But just like everything else, once I got the first few made, they were pretty easy to put together.

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After a few solid hours working in the new and improved Girl Cave, I was well on my way to being ready for class.

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Now, for the heart attack of this story.

At the time I was wrapping up, it was about 10 pm.  I headed in the house determined to knock one or two more things off of my To Do list.  So, I quickly decided I would water the plants (sometimes remembering to do that can be harder than you think!).  Got my watering can, headed into the dining room.

To find this bastard.  **Warning…there is one cuss word.**

So, needless to say, after beating the poor thing to death with a flip flop.  I called it a day!  lol!

Anyway, back to the class.  Everyone did an amazing job!  It was the first time that I offered for everyone to make something they would prefer (instead of me selecting the theme).  It was great!  Plus, this way, I knew for sure that everyone would be able to take home something they would really enjoy to have in their home.

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Although I like to pretend my dining room is more formal and fancy…I love seeing it covered with creativity.

Now, you’re probably wondering why it’s so dark?  Because not only was it one of the hottest days of the summer (and there have been PLENTY) but we lost power after a storm rolled through.

These women were such troopers.  It was sticky and hot and dark.  They were rock stars!

Just look at what we made!

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Because of the loss of power, I wasn’t able to get a group picture…but here are some of the other gems!

Plus, this darling!  She had a bonus day…she even lost a tooth while she was at class!IMG_20160828_175507281

She also won the award for the most paintbrushes used.

Ever.

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Overall, I couldn’t be happier.

No worries, I have already started planning the next class.  Not to mention, I still have people interested in doing another pallet class…so it looks like the work will go on!

More to come…

Fall wrap up is on full swing…so be patient with my lack of blogging.  I am sure by the time December rolls around, I’ll be driving you crazy again with all of my random thoughts on life.

Peace out peeps!

 

 

Reality Check

So, the house was built in 1857.

The first electrical air conditioning unit was invented in 1902.

But AC wasn’t available widely until after WWII.

That’s a difference of 45 years.

The life expectancy of a person in this era was 37 years. Literally, they couldn’t live long enough to experience the joy of cool air.

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Yep kids…check that out!  It was 1880 before small electric stations could provide power to a few blocks at a time.  So, if everything went smoothly, they could have had power at the house by 1930.

1930.

The first fan was invented in 1882, but it was pretty useless until electricity made it out here to the country.

So, that means, nothing…nothing until at LEAST 1930!

Now, more details of living in the past.

Clothes.

This is a modern version of what the woman of the era would have worn.

Thank you to Fashion through History for the contribution.

I mean, just look at those layers.  Not to mention, there was no such thing as Dri-FIT back then.  Just cotton and wool, primarily.  Not to mention, it wasn’t think cotton like we are used to today.  There was a blend called Linsey-Wooley which was very common in Colonial America. If you are really interested, you can even purchase reproduced materials here.

Not that women on the farm wore corsets, but they for sure wore petticoats.

For bedtime…it was almost as bad.

I am sure these are bit a fancy for farm life, but you get the idea. It had to have been rough. I can only imagine.

Not to mention…Bonnets.

They wore bonnets.

So, when it was all put together…it was like wearing a sweat bag all day long.

All of this brings me to this point.

I have toughed out this summer.  Partially because I didn’t have many options with only one outlet upstairs. It’s been a tough summer in Ohio.  Needless to say.

So, last night, in the middle of the night, when the dogs and I were miserable, I was thinking about the people who built this house and how they survived the heat.

I have come to this conclusion.  I have no idea how they did it.  Nor can I imagine how everyone smelled with the weekly baths and all.

I am thankful to live in 2016…even with all of it’s woes.

If you would like to read more…check out these sites for some bonus fun facts!

Legacy.com

Mental Floss

Now, go enjoy your electricity and hopefully air conditioning!

Peace out peeps.

 

 

 

 

 

Storm Cellar, Phase 2

Well, I know you have all been sitting on the edge of your seats waiting patiently for the next “chapter” of the storm cellar renovation at the house.

Since I am a people pleaser….

Here ya go!

So, I left off with the really cool old piece that we were able to salvage after it fell into the bottom of the storm cellar well, after the wall collapsed.

After setting the right side of the steps, we started working on the left side again.  To finish building the wall and place the cap piece.

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Big Bertha came

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Little did we know, that place what is the “right” side of the top piece (that was broken into 3 pieces) would be the easy side.  We tried REALLY hard to keep the left side in one piece.  Unfortunately, due to it’s size and weight, it became too much of a safety hazard and we were forced to cut it into smaller, more manageable pieces.

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This is just a cheesy picture of us working….I mean, I couldn’t resist!

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By the end of this work day (which was actually July 7th, for documentation purposes), this is what my awesome new storm cellar looks like!  Just to remind you….this was the before….

So scary!!!!

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Once again, could not thank Mr. T. enough for sharing his expertise in this project!

Onto the next project…

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Step design 101.  Who likes to play with blocks??

Peace out peeps.