Sunday, April 29, 2012

Spring Garden Tea Party

Tender blades of green grass please us all with a standing ovation for the arrival of spring!  Purple violets decorate the grass and the sun shines warmer!  This celebration of the arrival of spring was the backdrop for our celebration of Gracie Anne's 5th birthday!  April 5th was a lovely day for our Garden Tea Party!  This tea party was complete with sweet girls in lovely dresses, vintage jewelry, vintage hats and linens, mismatched tea set, pink lemonade and yummies, croquet, and hopscotch!

Gracie Anne, Eliza, Genna, Anna

Thank you to the darling girls for making a sweet memory with Gracie Anne!!

A Zoo Membership

This was such an exciting day!  The two little people in my life announced one day that we should all go to the zoo for my birthday!  So that is what we did!  Then we paid a few dollars more and turned our day's admission into a year membership!  Cool!

The first item of business was to figure out which way we were going.  After we lost all of our maps within the first 30 minutes of our arrival, we just followed our hearts!!

The day was beautiful - not too hot and not too cold!

And the critters were very cooperative and let us get a good look at them!

Cheetahs were the most anticipated visit of the day!  Avery and Gracie Anne both have a deep love for Cheetahs and could hardly wait until we found them.

I love this picture!  It reminds me of a little Callan and his first encounter with a polar bear!

For me!  I had a very memorable day with the most precious people in my life!!  I couldn't imagine a better way to celebrate 40 years!!!

Long Time No Post

This winter has turned out to be unseasonably warm!  This is was the warmest winter that Nebraska has had in the last 40 or 50 years!  We did have some blustery days, but thankfully, if we were to have a mild winter, this past winter was most beneficial to us since we still have been unable to completely close up the walls!  As usual, we have been very hard at work and our little old house on the hill is much better for it!

The family keeps growing up, dirtying laundry and are always hungry!!  We are sure to be eaten out of house and home before we have a chance to complete our renovation!

This is our sweet Grace who really wanted coy-wees (curlies)  in her hair for church.  I granted her wish a couple of months ago!  She was more than happy to let me take pictures!!

These are photos of the progress of mine and Tim's room.  This room came together pretty quickly.  I was surprised!  

Getting our king size mattress up the stairs was equally challenging!  It took us 35 minutes to stuff the mattress around this corner in the stairwell!

We have since enjoyed  many blissful nights in our bedroom!  I am currently working on window treatments and other details.  I will post finished pictures when I am finished!

The yard has also been a big priority.  We are needing to tame the wilderness that lays beyond our front porch...  We have a plethora of poison ivy that has taken over the property.  I am terribly allergic and despite that, I waged war on anything that lays in the immediate yard.  I am still paying for it, but I sure hope that very soon I will no longer be tormented by the noxious weed!

Creating a garden has also been very important.  I am leaving behind berries and asparagus and other wonderful things that I have become quite spoiled by when we lived at the orchard!  It was very important to establish perennials right away so that we could enjoy them next year!  We've planted red raspberries, strawberries, asparagus, a cherry tree taken from my little teeny grove at the orchard, rhubarb, white and purple juicing grapes, and of course, flowers and starts from the orchard as well as plants I've relocated from around the property to a more local bed so that we can be aggressive in removing poison ivy on the rest of the property.  We've also planted a good part of our veggie garden!  Unheard of this early in the spring in these parts.  I'm not complaining!  More pictures of our 'formal' style potager garden to come!

We had several hollow and huge trees that posed a serious threat to home and power... Thanks to the power company, several of these threat were removed, including a large  Lindon tree that we learned would have likely fallen onto the roof of the house within a month's time.  It was on of those tender mercies that the tree was taken down only a few days before a serious thunderstorm came through that produced tornadoes in Talmage and Nebraska City!  We surely would have lost the tree on the house!

 One of those sweet moments captured of the little people in my life!!

We haven't captured any photos of Mama Fox's babies yet!  But they are cute as they can be!  I was trying to photograph one of them when she walked around the corner of our dilapidated barn and she was startled at my presence.  She told me a thing or two and then leaped and bounded in the poison ivy that we grow so plentifully!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Middle Room

You are looking at a picture of a very happy girl.  Her very happy brother isn't in the picture because he was being very helpful for his Daddy!!

The reason for all of this happiness?  They are loving their new bedroom!

It was so funny after getting things moved in!  All of the monkeys sat on the bed and were completely silent as they admired.  I asked them if they were stunned because they were soooo quiet.  One said that he didn't know it could look this good.  Another said he thought it would be nice, but he didn't imagine that it would be so bright. 

Of course there is more work to do in here, but there has been great joy in living in this room!

I commissioned one of my Amish neighbors back in Missouri to build my 'brooding nest' shelves.  I LOVE it from the bottom of my heart!!  I think that this turned out to be a good choice for my vast collection of old and new children's books!  We've enjoyed reading stories every night!  We are currently reading the stories of Uncle Remus and that very tricky B'rer Rabbit.

I also like collecting old linens.  I only get them if I can pay less than a dollar!  Most of my collection comes from estate auctions.

This is the quilt detail of this amazing quilt my Mom made for Gracie Anne!  Not only is the majority of it hand applique, but the flower shaped yo-yos were all made by hand and it is completely hand quilted!  This is a treasure for sure!!

The bed.  After glazing it, Avery asked me why I made it so dirty!  So I had to explain.

From the hall.

From the closet.

The best part is that I am in awe!  I can't believe we did this and I love how it turned out!

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

The First Bedroom Nears Completion!

Here is how progress has been made!

In the beginning there was a very tired room.  It was dirty too.  My favorite: the haunted house curtains hanging in the window!  LOVE them!!

A large portion of the plaster from the ceiling had succumbed to the forces of gravity.  We knew we needed to insulate and run new wiring.  So we thanked gravity for helping us get a head start on the destruction process.

We hammered and got all dirty.

We updated the electrical.

 We put in insulation and energy efficient windows.

Then we put up sheet rock and mudded and taped and mudded and taped and mudded and taped and did a whole bunch of sanding in between.  And we got all dirty.

Then we primed and painted and wall papered!

Wallpaper detail with a funky cast of color.

Painted wall with the great antique bed find (painted a smoky purple.  I will probably do a black glaze on it when its done getting painted)

Still have a corner to take care of.  We need to put in the duct work for a vacume system and finish tying in the sheet rock with the chimney.

We will be putting crown molding at the top of the walls.  We will be putting picture rail molding on where the  green meets the cream color.  The moldings will be stained in the same color as the other mill work in the room and house.

Here is another project, but it also has a story.  The same day that I went antiquing and found the bed for 10 bucks, Gracie Anne found this lovely framed print.  

Gracie loves thumbing through pictures in our church Children's Songbook.  There are little pictures in there with Mary and baby Jesus and the stable with little lambs.  Her favorite song for quite a while has been, Mary Had a Little Lamb.  She would run up to me with her song book pointing to Mary and exclaiming, "Look, Mommy, its Mary had a little lamb!"  

Not too long after we entered the antique store Gracie Anne had found this... in the dark!  We had a bad storm go through the night before and a lot of power was still out.  That sure didn't stop us from our adventure!  We had flashlights!

When Gracie saw this she ran up to me.  Pulling on my arm she was exclaiming, "Mommy!  I found Mary had a Little Lamb."  So what could I do?  I had to buy it!  I was already married to it so the best I could negotiate was from 15 bucks down to 11.  I do have to say, she does have very good taste for art!

I don't like the frame AT ALL!
But found this and negotiated $3.

My Amish neighbor in MO is cutting some glass to go into this.  I need to cut a matte and I will  need to do some chip repair on the old frame.  After that I will paint it.  

 Finally, my rocking chair.  It will go in this room with some diy shelving for picture books.   My Amish neighbor, Joe, made this for me when I was expecting Gracie.  We had to start from scratch with the baby necessities since we got rid of everything after Avery!  This is such a comfy rocker.  I do want to finish it though.  Not sure if I should stain it or paint it.  It definitely will get some cushions!  Any ideas?

I still need to scrub, stain and seal the floor.  We still have some more big projects in this room, but in a week and a half, we've gone from sheet rock to paint and wallpaper in the 'south wing!'  In the same week and a half, we've gotten the west wing from sheet rock to this point:

More to come on the 'west wing!'