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Friday, May 3, 2019

Week One - We Are Off and Running

As of 3 p.m. today, we have owned our National Folk Farmhouse for one full week. So far, the furniture is moved in and about half of the boxes are unpacked. We still have a whole other rented storage unit full of boxes to take care of.

Today we are babysitting the grand puppies Ewok and Biscuit. Our daughter and son-in-law are having a roofing company come to work on their house and this will prevent the dogs from going nuts inside while the guys are busy hammering away outside. This is their dogs first time coming into our house so they had lots to sniff and explore both inside and out in the fenced-in yard too.

So far we have tackled a couple little projects. Steve added a whole house water filter, leveled the refrigerator so the doors shut properly, then he hooked up the ice maker and water dispenser on the refrigerator,

We had bought two light fixtures off Facebook Marketplace. One matches my other fixtures and Steve mounted that in the kitchen over the area that's going to be our breakfast nook. That was $75.

He also added one over the kitchen sink to match as well.

The second light fixture is a vintage chandelier that we are going to hang over the dining room table. We also grabbed that off Facebook Marketplace as well.  $60  I have prettier bulbs to put on it, and I am going to paint the little cardboard sleeves that serve as faux candles.  This pic is from the seller.

So far our best deal from the Facebook Marketplace was a guy selling four Andersen hinged patio door panels, the exterior type that are called the 400 Series. I had no idea how expensive these doors are until I looked them up on the internet later! But we were able to nab four of them, brand new in the boxes, from a guy on Facebook. He was going to use them on his home, and later changed his mind on his design. They've been sitting in his basement unused for four or five years now. So after we came and looked at them we were sure we could use two, but maybe not the other two. He practically begged us to take all four so he didn't have to carry them back down into the basement! For the bargain price of $20 a door, we went home with about $3,000 worth of doors!!!!

One more bargain we found was an exact match to the old pedestal sink that I used to have in our home on the Oconto River. I've always liked that sink, to me it looks like an old fashioned bird bath. Since we are going to be buying another pedestal sink for the half-bath that Steve is working on (more on that later), we will install this one in the full bath. We will move that existing sink over into the half-bath. There's nothing wrong with the one we have. It is perfectly new and pretty. It's just not my birdbath!

this pic is from the seller.... 
it's really white, not ivory,
She has the same mirror as I do too! 

Yesterday I got out a white paintbrush and decided to lighten up the frame around my mirror in the bathroom too. It had been a creamy ivory color with kind of distressed-looking markings highlighted on the scrollwork. Since all of the other bathroom fixtures are white, that seemed to be out of place. I really like the mirror, but just not the color. So I got out my little brush and dip dabbed on some white paint and ---- my oh my it sure looks good to me.

While I had the white paint out, I decided to paint the frame around the outside front door. It's a new door that the previous owners had installed recently. They never got around to painting the frame and I noticed that it was unpainted from the moment we first saw the house. My fingers were just itching to paint it, so that's one of the first projects I wanted to do.

I got both of the sides done and instead of going inside to get the stepladder, all I had to do was call on my Mister Tall Man. He took care of the top portion for me.

Now on to Steve projects:

Steve is really thinking a second bathroom makes a lot of sense. We have a nice large laundry room that it would be easy enough to add a toilet and sink to. Actually, originally this was the full bathroom so he is just putting a sink and toilet back where they were.

The sink he will install is the one from the master bath. The toilet will be the one he chooses like the one we had in the last home. As I type this blog on my phone, we are on our way up to Marinette to Menards. He will get his toilet along with a bunch of other things on our list.

Not only is he going to add a toilet and sink to the room, but he's going to change the entrance. Right now the entry into the laundry room comes from the dining room. He will close off the original doorway, leaving a long wall in our dining room.

It will be perfect for my buffet to fit on the long wall.  Temporarily the buffet is located in the kitchen and I would really like to get it out of there and into the dining room where it belongs.

He is going to move the entrance to the room to the kitchen instead. There is an awkward piece of cabinetry in the kitchen that was over head of the original kitchen stove location. The stove is now a slide in one in the center of the island. The remaining piece of overhead cabinetry is just kind of hanging there. He decided to remove the piece of cabinetry to make a new doorway to get into the laundry room / new half bath. He sure has some good ideas!!

He carefully removed the piece of cabinetry because I have an idea of what to do with that. Once he checked out the wall for locations if electrical and plumbing were hidden inside of it, he was able to move ahead and start removing the wall surfaces to make the doorway.

Such a Happy Man with Projects To Do! 

At the same time he decided to strip down the laundry room of the beadboard paneling and bring it all the way back to the studs. We will pick up new sheetrock today to enclose the room with fresh new walls and possibly some new flooring.

This will probably be the only room in the house that we are really revamping. So we may as well make it the way we want it.

As for the remaining piece of cabinetry, there's another awkward space on the opposite all wall in the kitchen. It is where the refrigerator used to be located.

The more I looked at that space, the more I was looking at that leftover piece of cabinetry. If we just hung it horizontally in it's original orientation, it really wouldn't fit and it would look funny. But I would like to keep it and re-purpose it rather than throw it away. That's what bugs me about those HGTV shows. They rip everything out in the kitchen and start over with brand new. That's not our way. I would rather reuse, re-purpose, or recycle.

The more I looked at that piece of cabinetry it suddenly hit me. I am wishing for a coffee bar. Our big tall coffee maker does not fit underneath the overhead cabinets while sitting on the kitchen counter. It is a taller coffee maker because it grinds the beans as well as brews the coffee.

For the past week, every morning we have to take it out of a cabinet, and put it out on the island and plug it into the receptacle to make coffee.  Then we put it away because I don't like it cluttering up the island.

But, if we had a little coffee bar like we had in our last home, we could just leave the coffee maker out and make coffee and be able to fill it from the top with the water and the beans.

So the more I looked at this piece of leftover cabinetry, I decided we should flip it on end and make it vertical! The very top surface can then have added a matching piece of counter-top. Steve said he could move that center shelf board a little bit over to the left. That will be fantastic because we already own five really neat wrought iron wine bottle racks. We can stack the wine bottle racks in the wider opening and make it into a wine cabinet!  On the left side it will be narrower we can add a couple little shelves. That will be perfect for Steve to put his big growler jugs from the microbrewery or maybe some of his booze bottles standing up right.  And the coffee bar on top!

I think this will be a win-win situation and it will fill in that awkward space as well, but still leave room enough to pull out the drawers or get into the cabinet in that corner.

Well, we are almost at Menards in Marinette. Time to sign off and go fill our lists and check them twice. I will add photos to this later and hit publish when I have a chance. We are busy busy busy so I'm not sure when that will be?

 P.S. Well, $900+ later, 
we are set and ready 
to work on our projects! 


  1. Can't wait to see it finished. You are both very talented. I agree I quit watching HGTV a long time ago such waste.

  2. The smile on Steve's face says it all. He's in his glory when doing home improvements.
    Be Safe and take your time Enjoying the projects.

    It's about time.

  3. Wow, the two of you are both talented and creative. I'm really looking forward to seeing it all being put together. AND I totally agree with your theory of re-use, re-purpose, or re-cycle. Have fun!

  4. You both do not waste any time at all with doing the modifications. I love the way you get things done and the great ideas and look forward to seeing all your ideas for your lovely home. Thanks for sharing.


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