Monday, October 13, 2014

A Busy First Summer On The Farm (Part 2!)

In addition to all the garden/preserving work I mentioned in Part 1, we also dove into the house remodeling. I love living in an old house. I like that is has a history and (crazy as it sounds) I feel like there's a certain warmth and comfort from past years that stays with the house. I like to think about the fact that in a house over a hundred years old, anything we go through, this house has probably seen it before. Other people got through their troubles, and had lived their happiest times, and loved their families within these same walls. I'm not the only one who feels this sense of warmth in this old house.  The first time my Dad walked in the door he said "this feels like home". We've had many family, friends, even my kids teachers come to our house and immediately say that it feels like "home" or reminds them of wherever home is to them. (Which often leads to their childhood stories of Mom's pot roasts and pies, climbing trees, or playing in old barns!) I would like to take credit for that and just say that I've made my house very comfortable and homey somehow....but I know that's not it!

Anyway, the other side of having an old house is that there is much work to be done to fix old damage and spruce it up a bit. We are doing all the remodeling ourselves so it's kind of a long road. But I think we've come a long way in just a year!

The first thing we really needed was a shower on the main floor for my parents (who live with us) to be able to access easily. We actually did this last Winter. We built an area onto an existing bathroom by pushing a wall out into another room.

 Existing (but showerless) bathroom.
Room commonly known as my sewing room although it's more of a multi-purpose space!
And walls going up for the new shower area to be built.

When we get around to remodeling the whole bathroom I'll have an"after" picture.

We also completed the sewing room, but then we started the living room and had to move everything into the sewing room temporarily (sigh) so pictures of that will  have to come later too.

Next up was the kids rooms. They have great oak floors that didn't need much work, and other than a couple new windows, most of what needed to be done there was cosmetic.
The kids chose their own colors and this one wanted a wilderness/cabin feel. I was a little concerned that all these deep colors would make the room too dark, but it actually looks great!
We added some antlers and lots of framed pictures of the Rockies. 

Here's another bedroom before....

And a very girly after! 

Last,but definitely not least, is our current project...the living room. We knew there was some old damage to the floor we would have to fix,but we didn't know how bad it would be until we got the carpet pulled up....
 ...ands saw this! Hello, basement!

Long story short, we ended up taking out the entire floor,
 replacing many of the floor joists...

...and putting in a whole new sub-floor.
 This project is still underway, the sub floor is complete, the new wiring is hooked up, new heating system installed, and walls patched just waiting to be mudded this week. We have a new wood stove coming next month, I'm sooo excited about that, last winter was our first winter without one and we really missed it! Then paint, flooring, and finally done!

So, that's what's been happening inside the house this summer. Next up....animal updates!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

A Busy First Summer On The Farm (Part 1!)

Hello! I'm back! :) I never planned to take a "summer vacation" from the blog, I just never seemed to get a spare moment! Well, I did, but it was 1 AM and I was TIRED! I'm soooo looking forward to catching up with all of you now!

Our first full Summer here was very eventful and productive, although somehow we're always left feeling like there was more we wanted to accomplish.

One of the big things to start out our Summer was that we sold our old house.
This was something were so anxious to get done because it allowed us to pay off the last of our student loans and FINALLY reach our goal of being debt free! We made this goal and started working toward it as soon as we got married. There were times it didn't seem like it would ever happen, so getting this close was both exciting and stress-inducing...just hoping the house would sell for what we needed to put us where we wanted to be financially. 
We had completely gutted and remodeled this house, so it makes me happy to think of the person who bought it hopefully enjoying it!

Once we got that out of the way, we settled in for a Summer of crazy weather. It wasn't so great for the gardens, but it did make for some beautiful skies.

It also brought enough rain to wash out fences, turn our road into a river, and bring lots of snapping turtles down the creek and into our pastures with the cattle!

What plants didn't get washed away, destroyed by hail, or blown away with the wind, did manage to produce enough to keep me busy canning, freezing, and dehydrating! I wish I had taken more pictures of all this, but with fresh produce piling up on the counters, floor, and porch, photography didn't seem like the best use of my time!

We were also blessed to be surrounded by some stunning flowers, some we planted, some just turning up on their own.

I have so much more to tell you...but I'm thinking you have have other things to get done today besides reading my we'll pick this back up soon with animal news, house remodeling, and and some small town summer fun.

Can't wait to catch up with you all! What was the highlight of your Summer?