Christmas Eve, 2016

December 25, 2016

Bet you didn't know that I can write any time I want, about anything I want. Pretty amazing, I know.

Christmas Eve was fantastic.  It was a Saturday and there was nothing going on, so we just lazed around all day.  Richard started a fire in the fireplace in the morning and kept it going all day.


Harrison and I did a small puzzle in the kitchen, the boys each played some minecraft, and Richard and I watched a few real life murder solving shows.  Then while we waited for dinner we all watched an old movie about Abraham and when God commanded him to sacrifice Isaac.  The boys were very concerned and hopefully Richard and I explained it all well enough.  We should probably have another lesson about that, just to clear up any questions they might have.

I really am not a very fancy lady, but tried to create some sort of Christmasy something for the dinner table.


What is more Christmasy than small tree branches??

We had Steak and Eggs, a Crockpot Hashbrown Casserole, and Overnight Baked French Toast.  I like to have our big Christmas Breakfast on Christmas eve, so that Christmas morning we can just have Cold Cereal.

And now I bet you are curious to see that Christmas Quilt I have hanging on my dining room wall, aren't you?


Oh, you weren't? You suffer from an intense and irrational fear of quilts? Ah well, I'm sorry to hear that. Terribly sorry. Just a bit of paper peicing and applique to haunt your Christmas nights.

After dinner we put the kids to bed and Richard and I wrapped presents while watching a movie.  Usually we watch "White Christmas" but I decided it was only fair that Richard should get to choose the movie everyone once in a while, so he picked "Warcraft". Still very festive and season applicable. AND and we were done wrapping before Midnight.  It was a Christmas Miracle!



November 11, 2016

You read that right.  We are done.  The bank has sent their appraiser and he gave us a thumbs up and has stated that WE ARE DONE.

Everyone heave a huge, collective sigh of relief.

So let me show you how the house looks right now.  Most of the rooms are just blank canvases at this point, but from here on out anything we want to do we can do on our own timetable, on our own terms.

I should warn you that this is going to be A LOT of pictures.  I hope your eyeballs are ready.

This is the Front Room:


It is in desperate need of some color.


We are pretty happy with how the fireplace turned out.



I'm still not sure about the white mantel, but it is only paint, and we can change it anytime we feel like.  Remember what it looked like before?


We've come a long way.  And thank goodness.  I had to have somewhere to put those pumpkins I didn't put away after Halloween because I decided they could probably pass for Thanksgiving decorations.

Across the hall we have the room we are calling the Library.  You can see why:


SOMEDAY it will be a library.  Maybe.  If we ever get our energy back.  This room has so much less stuff in it than it had 2 weeks ago, that I am pretty thrilled with how it is.

If you walk backwards down the hall from the front room it would look like this:


But you would probably trip on something.  Don't walk around my house backwards.  It is a bad idea.

Off to your left is the downstairs bathroom:



Right next to the office.


A few weeks ago the room was so jammed with stuff in a haphazard fashion that you could barely walk through it and you certainly couldn't find anything.  We have a shed in the back yard that all those tools are going to be stored in, but first we have to move the shed.  And who knows when that will happen.

Next is the Kitchen.  Hey, what's over there?


 Look!  It's my desk!



A few more shots of the kitchen, from a few different angles.




Oh, and look over here.  This is where we store our toys,


And our boxes of cables.  We also have a boy with an orange box for a head.  No biggie.


Here we have the mudroom.


Functional, but not much else.


On the opposite wall in the mudroom is this:


I couldn't find a before picture.  It was originally a window, but it got all framed in, covered up and drywalled on the other side.  On this side we decided to put a magnetic chalk board:  We glued some sheet metal to a peice of ply wood, then painted it with chalkboard paint.  If anyone else wants to do this I just recommend using the chalkboard spray paint instead of the kind that has to be rolled on.  I would guess that would give you the most smooth finish, unlike the bumpy finish we ended up with.

That wall now looks like this:



We have a basket on the wall for Menus, and one for  Coupons, and a basket for each of the boys' homework.  I am loving it because those were the things that spent the most time on the countertops, and now they have a home.

Next to that we have a corkboard I found in a pile of stuff somewhere and the boys' job charts.  Even without explaining the system to you, I think you can tell that the kids aren't great at doing their jobs.


Moving on.  This is taking forever.  Are you still with me?  Let's move upstairs now.



I'm still supposed to varnish the hand rail and the other stained stair parts.  I really do plan to get around to it someday.


We finally got a door "knob" on the sliding door for the upstairs bathroom. Yea!


And Colin's room got painted and Richard built him a bed.  I still have to stain it.  You know.  Someday.



The superhero symbol artwork are orginal Marion Boyd's.



And Harrison finally decided he wanted his room painted.  We went a little more manly with the color in there.


His bed was made to look like the bed in Minecraft, but I think it deperately needs a headboard, and I'm still trying to convince the masses.


Over here we've got another original Marion Boyd.  It was supposed to be mine, but Harrison stole it.  I kind of love it in his room, so I'll let it go.


This is my room full of crap.  I mean crafts.  Same dif.


Lastly is the master bedroom.  


Very blah.  It is on the someday list though, so don't you worry.


You thought we were done?? Oh, contraire!  We haven't even gone outside yet.  And guess what.  We got our house PAINTED.  It is pretty nice.  Especially the old trim. It hasn't been painted in probably 60 years.  It looks great.  

We'll start in the back.





NOW we're done.  You've finally seen the whole thing.  Landscaping is going to work wonders here, but we're going to wait until the spring. Maybe I'll throw in one final before picture, just for good measure.


Wow.  We really need to trim that tree.  That is it.  The end of the project.  And we would like to thank you, dear readers, for sticking with us through this long and trying ordeal.  You are what makes it all worth it.  Thank you.  And GOOD NIGHT!



October 17, 2016

Guess what?  My kitchen is done.  They finished it, and I didn't even tell you.  How dare I?  I have a good reason though.  We had to be done with the house by the end of September so the bank could finalize the loan, and so even though all I wanted to do once the kitchen was done was tell you good people about it, there were a few other odds and ends that had to be finished before the inspector came.   So we worked real hard and finished them and the inspector came and said, "Great.  Now just do a few more things and you will be done."

He was pickier than we expected.  They extended the loan for ANOTHER month (for a fee, of course) so we are finishing just a few MORE things and then, just maybe, we will really and truly be done.  I hope we can make it.

Anyhoo, the kitchen.  It is time to see it.  I hope you are ready, because I don't see any point in stalling any more than I already have.

And here it is!  The Finished Kitchen!


Yea!  Lets take a closer look at a few things, shall we?

The cabinet over the fridge:


It is where I keep my cake pans and cookie sheets.  Hooray!  I love having a spot for them.  There is even a shelf above them, though it is too tall to use regularly, so I don't know what we'll keep up there.


The range hood over the stove.


I love it.  I shouldn't love a hood so much, but I do.  And I couldn't have gotten that with Ikea cabinets, so that is at least 1 point in favor of custom cabinets.

Next we have the spice drawers.  Fun!


Right across from the stove lies the microwave, and look what the builder did!  He put a frame up around it!


Over here is the sink with open shelving above and the dishwasher to the right.  There is no kick plate under the dishwasher.  Because the one that came with it is black.  I guess I should just paint it, but probably I will forget for a couple years unless the inspector wants us to do it.


I put a bunch of pottery and brick-a-brack up on the shelving over the sink, cuz I don't have any where else to put them and I don't know what to put up there.

Next you will see my desk.  Guess what we forgot to have the countertop guy do?  Drill a hole in the desk top so all the cables could go through it.  A small thing, but a bit of an annoyance.


See how a little peice of trim under my desk isn't painted? And there is just a hole in the wall where the internet jack is supposed to be? It is things like that the the inspector says we have to finish.

And there you have it!  Everything in my life hasn't magically fallen into place, my problems haven't all gone away and my morning breath is still horrific, but my kitchen is done, and that is pretty ok.