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Friday, May 10, 2019

Winding up Week Two at the New House

It's hard to believe we are at the end of the second week living in our new house.

When I look around, I think of everything we have accomplished, but then I look at our second storage unit still half full of boxes and totes that need to be hauled over here. Then I think "Oh my, when is this going to be over?"

The weather has not been cooperating very well for the projects that we want to work on outside. It has been raining almost every day and night. So I jumped the order of priority and started working on some inside projects.

One small project that I wanted to do was to add matching handles and drawer pulls to our center island. The previous people had built an island to match the rest of the kitchen, but never got around to putting on the handles and drawer pulls. Fortunately, I was able to find matching ones and set about to mounting them.

Steve had to help me on a couple of the last drawers because the wood was so thick to get through. He had to create a recessed area on the back sides for the screws to completely reach the pulls. Now it's done, and I am glad that the front surface of the island matches the rest of the cabinets

We ordered a couple pull-out shelves for the back side of the island on each side of the stove. These are Rev-A-Shelf units which will each contain a trash can and a recycling can on each side of the stove. Those should be delivered on Saturday and I bet Steve will have them installed before the weekend is over.

Steve started some inside projects as well. He took off the fake beadboard paneling of the laundry room and put up sheetrock. The laundry room was the original bathroom of the home so he is going to install a toilet and sink back in where they originally were to create a half bath. By moving over the washer and dryer he can make a more workable floor plan. The drywall will look much better than the fake beadboard paneling that was in there.

Once he gets everything all taped up and mudded, I will get in there with the primer and paint. It will look spiffy in no time and we will have added a half bath to our home.

Some of the grandkids got into our home improvement projects as well. The oldest grandson Jameson came over and gave Grandpa a hand. We needed to secure the closet shelving more securely than the original fasteners from the manufacturer. The combination closet shelf and clothes hanging rail crashed down after we brought home all of our clean clothes from the laundromat!!

Grandpa showed grandson Jameson the trick of slowly moving a strong magnet on a string, dragging it back and forth across the surface of the wall. Once it hones in and reacts by sticking to a nail or screw underneath the plaster, you know that's where a stud is. Then Jameson marked the stud locations with a pencil. Now they knew where to drill the brackets into the wall to securely hold the clothing shelf and hanging rail.

They also worked on putting up two pieces of white boards on the wall between the master bathroom and bedroom door. Jameson already knew how a level works and showed Grandpa what to do. Again, they located the studs in the wall so they could secure the two white backing boards.

Once the boards were in place, the guys then installed six nice stainless steel coat hooks. These will be used for our bathrobes, extra clothes we may wish to wear again, and our jammies! When the door is open you don't see any of the clothing hanging back there.


Jameson's little sister Whitney came over for a tea party this week. She shared her tea with four little doggies. We were babysitting Biscuit and Ewok grandpuppies. Our daughter Erin and husband Waylen are having a new roof put on their house. Their dogs were just going crazy with the sounds of the roofers working outside, so the grandpuppies have been spending the day times over here while the roof is being completed.

Little Whitney enjoyed the chance to bake some cookies with me while she was here for the morning. She carefully placed the little sections of dough on the parchment paper. She counted each and every one.  (we later slid them around to more uniformly spread on the parchment.)

She kept a close eye on those cookies as they baked. Something else that I am enjoying is that this new fancy-dancy stove has three wonderful roll out racks to bake 3 trays of cookies at one time!

She was very anxious to try out a cookie 
but they had to cool off first on the baking racks.

Just look at those eyes! 
They say: "I want a cookie, please?"

We shared some cookies at our little tea party and yes, 
I sat at the table with her while we had our tea.
Later when her parents came to get her, 
she even taught her Mommy and Daddy to drink tea with 
"Pinkies Out!"

When it was time for Whitney to go home, she was very proud to bring a plate full of cookies back to her family, to show them what she did at Grandma and Grandpa's house!

Well, it kept on raining this week so I did another inside project that was setting on the back burner. I had bought a vintage chandelier from Facebook Marketplace but it needed to have a fresh paint touch-up. The old surface was pitted and corroded. The best thing to do was remove all of the crystals. Can you believe it, 75 crystal chains of 2 crystals each... making 150 crystals????

The imitation candle sleeve pieces were just white plastic tubes. I slid them off the light fixture and decided to give them new look.

I slid all of the tubes onto a long piece of metal rod that Steve found for me. Using this Krylon paint called Make it Stone I gave them a couple coats. Now the candle sleeves were a soft creamy color with a texture.

The light fixture itself got a new coat of silver which covered up the tarnished and pitted areas of the original surface.  I covered over each bulb socket with a square of tinfoil. It keeps paint from getting inside of the socket and causing connection problems. I used a dull silver and then a shiny chrome silver to touch up just the highlights to give it a two tone appearance.

Now it will match the big mirror 
that we are going to hang over the diningroom buffet.

I started re-assembling the light fixture piece by piece, crystal by crystal. The little delicate wires had to be squeezed into place and carefully bent over. If you bent them too many times they are sure to break.

I had previously purchased 12 of these interesting hexagonal light bulbs, of which I put some in the chandelier in the bathroom. I had eight bulbs left over to do this chandelier in the dining room. Exactly what I needed to complete the fixture.

My wonderful tall husband 
mounted it on the ceiling
 over the dining room table. 

We will later add a dimmer switch to create different moods. But for now the eight light bulbs really shed off a lot of light into the room.

The rain kept on and on. Thursday, even though it was raining, Steve had lawn mowing on his mind. With all of this rain, the grass is going to grow tall very fast. With 2 and 1/2 acres to mow he decided to reconsider his lawn mowing methods and invest in a bigger zero turn riding lawn mower.

He found one on Craigslist that he decided was the right mower for him. If Steveio's happy, then everyone's happy.

He was so happy, he even test-drove it in the pouring rain....
 Before loading it up and bringing it home.

It's now Friday morning. The weathermen are promising that the rain has stopped for the day. I do see some bright sky outside. Not quite sunshine, but close enough.  I have some outside projects that I would like to get started on.

So I better get off this computer and get my butt in gear.

 Starting week 3 in our National Folk Farmhouse.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Week Two Has Barely Begun

We are only a few days into Week Two of projects around our National Folk Farmhouse.  It's been fun and we have been working on things in somewhat of an order that makes sense with our budget as well as our time frame of what we want to get done.... before we tackle the BIG JOB (more on that later).

We still have many boxes to unpack, and a lot more sitting in the storage unit. Sadly, Steve lost track of ONE box marked "garage stuff" and we looked and looked all over yesterday at the storage unit. I swear we moved each and every box, and could not find it. It has been bugging him so much. We went back this morning to look again.   And there it was, snuggled in between boxes of yarn and fabric.  He was overjoyed!!! The tools in that box are what he needed for the next step on our laundry room project.  Life is good again, my man has all his tools!

I woke up to sunshine streaming into my pretty kitchen.  The little stained glass light shades and the blown glass paperweights add such sunshine to my heart. Ahhhhhh   soon we will be changing out these windows to new ones.  These are old and have blown thermal-panes and need replacing. Then they will be even more clear and pretty.   The table that I ordered for in the center of these four stools arrived in a broken open box and the table inside severely damaged. I got a return shipping tag and it was picked up. The next one will arrive at the store in Green Bay and we will personally inspect it and take it home ourselves.  For now, the four stools keep us from walking into the light fixture overhead.

Our sellers left us a brand new, still in the package, screen/storm door for the front of the house. They never got it installed, so they left it to us.  Since we were due for a few nice days, we figured it would be good for air flow to have a screen door opening into the livingroom. 

We took out the instructions (which I read) and started to assemble the parts.  Most of the instructions were translated from a very poor understanding of english, with the translation leaving a lot to be desired.  Ahem! But we got it figured out.

In the early morning sunshine, with the birds singing, we stood out on the front porch and put it all together.  It was making sense now as we set the pieces in place.  A few cuts with a hacksaw and we were in business. 

There is the solid glass door,
and the screen door option.

Our two little stinkers think this big big window is pretty cool... they can look out without having to be up on ottomans or flying over our chairs to bark out the big window.  Now they have one on their own level.... 

This morning, Steve decided it would be a good time to get our housewarming present planted. It is a Granny Smith apple tree from our oldest daughter and husband and kids. We found a good spot....


The ground is very very wet with all of the snow melt, and now recent rains.  Steve was able to dig the hole and get it planted with very little effort.  We will be picking up some other apple and cherry trees to plant in the surrounding area of the back yard. We have two and half acres to fill with whatever we want.

I don't think we will ever grow tired of looking at this VIEW!!!
That is our backyard all of the way back to that far tree line. 

When we bought the house, there was a flag pole holder, but it was too low and on the wrong pole. We are going to be moving over the front steps soon (to be in line with the front door) so moving the holder now was one step ahead of the game.  Steve took care of it in a few minutes, and our flag is waving proudly each morning we put it out for the day. 

Please take note, we will be moving the front steps over to the next section of the porch to line up with the door.  The steps are not up to code anyhow, the top step and bottom step are only half steps, the stringers are not correct. But also, take note of that plastic trellis stuff screwed along the porch railings???

Yup.. there it is!  it's OFF! 


Our daughter Erin is going to repurpose the plastic stuff for some climbing beans in her garden.  We wanted it off because not only was it plastic, but it was a smaller pattern than the wooden trellis material below the porch.  I am going to be painting that lower porch trellis a deep reddish/burgundy soon).

We are going to rebuild the railings later with taller spindles and top caps.  Also in the plans are to paint the porch flooring with a nice medium grey to set off the red and the white. And add the red shutters.  For now I think it looks much better minus the trellis! Wait till the steps are moved and rest is completed....

My inside project today was to hang up some things in the Grandtots Toy Room.  I hung our wall display of all the grandkids' names and my most favorite photos of each one.  We took the table and little chairs from the storage unit this morning so now the littlest grandkids have a seat their own size to play Tea Party.

We put the dogs' ottomans under the window, so they can look out here to keep an eye on the mail-lady.  They are getting into the routine now and are figuring out when she comes down the street. On the other side of the room, we have a bookshelf for now. But later we are going to build in a frame for bunkbeds on that wall. It will be like a college dorm maybe like a loft bed overhead.  Should be a fun project in the future.

Speaking of Grandkids....  
Clayton got over-exuberant playing in the 
spring run-off ponds out back today

Actually Chelsea did too, but not as much mud. They had to rinse Clayton off outside with the garden hose, because I was not going to let that mud into the house. They were both soaked to the bone.  Once they got rinsed off, we managed to slide off their wet clothes, and into two of Grandma and Grandpa's dry T-shirts to wear home. 


this little lady is taking after her Grandpa! 

I wonder what we are going to work on tomorrow?