Monday, January 15, 2018

::small house dining room::

Our new house is not a large place.  It's no tiny house, but it is compact.  Around 1900 square feet with three full baths and four bedrooms worked in.  There is no space for a formal rarely used spaces, so we need to utilize our dining space as well as possible.   

I have a dining room table that my father custom built for me about 15 years ago.  It is an heirloom and will be passed down through many generations.  I have no where to keep it besides in my house.  So our dinning area had to work for that table. 

The shape of the dining area leads its self to three different table positions.

1. Pushed against the wall daily use. 

2. Pulled out from the wall for family meals

3. Table top extender added for large family seating

I want to discuss the table top extender.  With this new house we now live very close to all of my husband Josh's family.  We needed a place that could seat 12 comfortably.  But remember how I said this medium sized table is an heirloom and is never leaving my house?  I had to find a solution.  

I saw this pin and knew it was the solution for us - an extra large table top that just goes right on top of a smaller table top but can be removed when not needed.  I put Josh right to work.  He modified they inspiration pin but the idea is the same - it's a piece of trimmed plywood with a lip attached so you can just lay it over the regular table to make it larger.  Then when not in use we just store it in our barn.  It has worked exactly how I wanted it to.  We borrowed chairs this year but I hope to get some stacking chairs for next year that I can get out for large celebrations. 

It has taken us about six month to agree on a chandelier for our dining space.  I needed it to be fairly thin and long to make visual sense over the table and with its location in the room.  But I needed it to be movable for the three positions that our table utilizes.
We found an antique section of a horse chart that is called a single tree - this one is large for its use and I suspect was for a large draft horse. Josh modified it with wire and two inexpensive light fixtures to become our chandelier. He put three hooks in the ceiling that I plan to paint with ceiling paint that are attached to ceiling beams for strength.  They each are perfectly spaced to accommodate the three possible table placements.   

The location makes it act as a great buffet serving area during parties, like my friends baby shower.


Tuesday, January 2, 2018

::princess popsicle petunia jingles consuela banana hammock::

She surprised the kids with the most adorable tiny puppy of all time.  

I have been begging for a house dog for years and finally talked Josh into it.  

I had to get her a cat collar because she is SO tiny.  

She is the most snugly creature of all time.  

She is the same size as our one year old guinea pig.  He hates her in case you can't tell.  

Sweet little face. 

Friday, December 29, 2017

::farm dogs run in shed::

My two giant breed dogs are outdoor dogs.  They occasionally come in for love sessions but they mostly run and protect our farm.  With that said, I love these dogs like my heart might explode.  They are both well designed to withstand extreme cold, but I worry.  So I talked Josh into creating a space in my greenhouse to be their winter retreat.  Our long term plan is to build an extension off our shed for the dogs, but we need something right now that is more significant than their large dog house.   

First thing we had to do was clean out this disaster area that had become my greenhouse.  I had Rosie in there for a few nights when she got spayed and she did some really great decorating.  

It is FREEZING right now here and the short kids are all on break.  So we forced them into cold gear and made them help.  

It's hard to really explain how gigantic these dogs are.  Pictures don't really capture the proportions of these guys. 

Gus met our new house dog today.  He thought she was pretty boring.  

All cleaned up and fence built!  See the green fabric flap in the back?  That leads out into their run.  Gus figured out the flap in about two minutes.  Rose just followed him.  

Cat have their food lifted to a higher level and some comfy beds added for them.  I'm hoping this gets the ducks to leave the cat food alone.  

Hay is all added and the happy meatballs are tucked in.  

Tuesday, November 28, 2017

::i needed a mantel::

This poor man gets to build my ideas all the time.  
He just wants to go hunting but I rope him in to all kinds of projects.  
I've never had a house with a fireplace and I really wanted one in this house.
Budget kicked that idea out.
But I locked my brain onto a faux mantel.  

I wanted it to match the concept of what is already in the house.
Here is the base he built.

I wanted the scale to not be too large but still fun to decorate.  
The top is a piece of salvaged wood that we got from my father.  

I finished the top with just satin wax and it really shows how pretty the wood is.   

Then I primed it. 

And did two coats of the same white paint as what is on the trim.   

I still plan to add some more things to the interior box area.  
Maybe another level of trim? 
Fake painted brick in the back?  
I'm not sure - but it is a great start.   

Monday, November 27, 2017

::getting the tree - a family affair::

Craft station

It was pointed out to me this year by Emma and Josh that I usually ditch them and get our tree when they are not home.  We made a point of picking a scheduled date to all get to go together this year. 

Since we have moved we tried out a new place this year.  Turns out the manager had babies that I LOVED and got to take care of when I was a nurse.  What a fun small world.  I hugged her so tight I about squeezed her head off.  

The littles and I got there early and had a meet and great with Santa.  

Josh and Emma met us and off we went on our tree hunt.

Piney Acres is a magical place.  I have a not so secret dream that if I hadn't been a Nurse Practitioner I would have tried to start a pumpkin patch/tree farm.  It's just so flipping cute and agri-fun.  Josh would not have been suited for the intense amount of socialization that would have taken, so it worked out best that we just have a hobby farm.  Still - every time we go to a place like this I try to talk one of the kids into why they need their own farm when they grow up.    

Quinn felt like a big stud for cutting down the tree.  

Our cozy little house looks very festive.  

Friday, October 20, 2017

::barn shop remodel::

When we first toured our farm it had two big selling points:
1.  The land was the right size/location and it was PRIVATE
2.  It had the most monsterously cool old barn

I'm not joking about the monstrous part of the barn.  It's around 12,000 square feet of really old barn.  It used to be a large working dairy farm, but about 25+ years ago it was sold to a family that wanted the barns for storage.  Eventually they turned the house into a rental - which is how it ended up in the state it was when we bought it.  The barn has a really awesome cement block area that was begging to be redone.  It has three rooms, one large main room and two side rooms.  I feel like with lots of work from Josh and encouragement from me - these rooms have become what a very sunny basement would be to most people.  A dude room, a study, and a studio. 

First Josh tore out the shop ceiling which was dying a slow death. 
He also removed the no longer functional furnace.  

This awesome old sink was in one of the side rooms.  We carefully removed in and are storing it for a future use that has yet to declare itself.  I thought about trying to use this in my kitchen but it didn't work.  

Now the side room is being used for storage, but at least its window has been repaired.  Eventually it will be turned into a study.  

The main room needed some major love.  
See the missing ceiling?

We painted it cubs blue and grey.  

Josh added in some awesome built in cabinets.  
Chairs from my dad, Josh's dad, and Josh's grandpa are providing seating from three very different eras.  
It looks a little like the three chairs in Goldie Locks.  

The other side of the main rooms shows what a hot mess ripping out the ceiling was.  
Raccoon poop and old insulation = facial mask.  

This is the main entrance into the largest room in the shop. 

Here is a picture of the ceiling joists being replaced.  

Starting to come along with new ceiling and paint.

And dressed up with floor paint and furniture.  
Phase one for this room is done. 

He is the corning of the third room in the shop.  
Look at all that amazing natural night.  

And here is that same corner after it was all fixed up and we talked Josh into giving it to Lily and I as our art studio.  

We quickly put in our supplies.

Including an old Mountain Dew bottle we found in the barn.  

It makes my hearty sing.  
This room is getting lots of use and will never be this clean again. 


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