The Farmhouse

Monday, April 14, 2014

He's Back!

Before I start waxing on about our wonderful new landscaping, I must catch my breath.  You see we have a visitor.  Or was here all along?  Not sure, but I was not happy to see him that's for sure!

Here he is sunning himself on the sill of the screened in porch.  Sorry, but I may have to move.
The landscapers were kind enough to move him into the woods, but I may have nightmares about this.  People - this -is - a - big - snake!!

Ok, ready for the big reveal?
Ta Da!
Garage finished and painted.

First phase of landscaping completed.

We are told these shrubs are deer resistant. 
I am tickled by the window box,too.

Cute, huh?
Stay tuned for "How Cliff Tries To Grow a Lawn, Part 2."
Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Porch News

We have been working hard here at the ole' Farmhouse.  Last week we stained the porches.

This is the west porch all taped and ready to be stained.  We did this porch with brushes and the front porch with a roller.  I think the brushes worked best.

Here is the front porch before we put the rug and bench back.

Please notice the burlap pillow made by yours truly!  That's right - a new craft!!

On Sunday we bought new furniture for the west porch. 

Love it! We worked as a team and it only took 2 hours to put it together.
Now we just need some flowers and we are all set.
Come - sit a spell.
Thanks for stopping by.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

New Look - New Girl

I hope you all like the "new" look of my blog!  I got bored and changed it up a bit.  New colors , new season. A girl can change her look if she wants to.

Well it seems as though I have been sidelined with a case of "kennel cough".  No didn't catch this from dear Bella.  Got it from you know who.  It started a week ago and hasn't let up much. I'm not really sick, but I have been coughing like a dog.  I finally called the doctor and he started me on some meds, so let's hope they kick in soon.  I have barely left the house except for a few trips around the block with Bella.  Which got me thinking about our new hood.  It's a strange feeling when you  don't know your neighbors. I walked the same streets for 28 years and knew just about everybody.  By saying I knew them I mean I often waved and exchanged pleasantries. Most of these folks never knew my name, but probably thought of me as that crazy lady who always walks dogs.  In the 28 years that I strolled the streets of my old neighborhood I walked 7 different dogs. For 14 of those years I walked 2 dogs together.  Now not all of my encounters were cordial mind you.  You see I have something to admit.  Come very close.  Closer.  Just an eeny bit closer....I don't always pick up poop.  There I said it.  I am deeply ashamed and sorry!  To be totally honest that is why we moved.  I have had several "incidents" with my neighbors over the years.  There was the time my dog Timber made a "deposit" on an elderly Russian gentleman's lawn.  He must have seen me through the window and came running out of his front door screaming, "Miss, Miss!" Well I did what every self respecting crazy person would do.  I ran! Ran all the way home.  Came in the door huffing and puffing and had to explain why I was in cardiac arrest to my beloved hubby. He admonished me - again.  I know I should pick up.  I know.  Then there was the time I thought no one was looking and my Bernese Tucker "left a deposit" and just as he finished the couple from up the street turned the corner.  I looked away in doodie shame just in time to hear the husband say, "She doesn't pick up the shit?"  He said it loud as he had earphones in and probably didn't realize how loud he was.  Well folks that's what did it.  He shamed me right in to going to Petco and buying a 10 pack of poop bags.  I am proud to say - I now pick up!! Yeah me!  I even bought a bumper sticker stating this :) we are in a new place and I must make a good impression. I am the new girl. I don't know these folks and I want them to like me.  And like Bella. And Cliff.  It is hard to make new neighbor friends in a world where everyone just whizzes by on the street.  I have met a few dog people and they are nice. They don't know about my past of not picking up, so that's good.  Right? We try to put our best foot (and paw) forward and make some new friendly acquaintances.  Dogs seem to make friends quickly.  A couple of sniffs here and there and then it's off to the races.  Bella has 3 boyfriends so far.  I am hoping when the warm weather comes I will make some new friends, too.

On the Farmhouse front we had a Landscape Architect come by to give us some ideas. I have been doing some crafting while I've been sidelined with my cough.

This is the new stencil I got.  I am deeply in love.

I painted this old toy chest and put the stencil on the front.  We are going
to get cushions for the top and make it a seat.

Also put it on a tray. Love!

Cliff hung the painted window on the screened in porch.

Proudly carrying my poop bags on every walk.  Thank you!

My little baby.
Thanks for stopping by.

Monday, March 17, 2014

The Down Side of Downsizing

Yes, it's cozy.  Yes, it's charming.  Yes, it's Unique.  Yes it's SMALL.  I am starting to feel the squeeze.  Why all of the sudden am I noticing how small our Farmhouse is?  Two words.  The Flu.  It seems poor Cliff has come down with the flu.  Yes mom - he got the flu shot! So naturally this affects me - after all, isn't it all about me anyway?  It all started innocently enough a few nights ago.  He had a few coughing spells, but felt OK.  That night every 36 seconds he coughed and I woke up (me...again).  Bad night.  Last night he started to feel sick and now full blown flu symptoms. Fever, chills, coughing  and moaning "why me."  So where's a man to go in this tiny place?  Well right now he's camped out on the sofa spreading germs on the remote.  He slept on the sofa last night, but I can't ask him to do that again in his weakened state.  Can I? I know, I know. I will give him the bed and I will go sleep on the slanting sofa bed upstairs. This is the down side of living in a smaller space.  There is nowhere to hide. I also noticed this phenomenon this past weekend when Josh came to visit.  A 6'2" man-child and his 65 pound puppy.  Throw in a 70 pound Golden Retriever and this place gets real small.  And I'll let you in on a secret....he may be moving home!  Josh has decided he wants to save money for a house.  Isn't that Great!  Fantastic!  Help! He couldn't of decided this before he got a Newfoundland? I remember walking around my old house, before we moved and saying how we never use these extra rooms.  Now I am yearning for just a little more space. Should we plan an addition to The Farmhouse???  I know once spring comes I will have the great outdoors, but, for now I am feeling the squeeze.

Don't think I am a bad wife, however. I am making my beloved chicken soup and I shoveled the drive and walkway.  I painted and waxed a bench for the screened in porch, too. Trying to keep busy.  Well I've got a go and get the soup off the stove.  I will be watching The Housewives Reunion upstairs tonight.
Thanks for stopping by.

Happy St. Patty's Day

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Springing Forward

It's almost here-Spring!  Our thoughts have turned from ice melt to flowers and we are very excited, indeed!  We spent yesterday getting the front porch spruced up.  We had an old wooden bench that lived on our front porch at our old house and decided it needed some TLC.  Cliff painted it and now it adds a pop of color on an otherwise bland porch.

He also hung the sign I made.

Still bland, but nothing that a few flower pots can't fix!  Oh - and see that pretty propane tank?  It's screaming to have a few bushes planted around it.
We also got to sit on the screened in porch. Come - sit a spell!

The sun felt sooo nice.
With the good comes the bad.  And by bad I mean mud.

And of course Bella loves to lay in the mud!

We did have a lovely lawn when we bought the house, but , Wes used the dirt from excavation to change the grade around the house, hence, the mud. I see many trips to Lowes in my future.  
We also spent a few moments on this porch.

Can't wait to get to work! Come on Spring.
Thanks for stopping by.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

My New Obsession

We are almost at the end of February.  Let's all say Amen!!  What a winter this has been.  We have all collectively had it with winter. Long days turning into even longer nights.  I have even started playing Candy Crush!  If you don't know about this game, consider yourself  lucky.  This game was devised to warp the minds of innocent, middle aged women (maybe men,too, not sure) and render them helpless and brain dead. I was warned by my friend, Kathy not to get involved, but, I chose to look the other way and now I am hooked. There is no strategy to this game nor is there any exercising of the brain.  It is just stupid colored candies dropping down and I MUST eradicate them and their stupid "jellies", whatever they are!  Can you see where I am going with this people - I need help.  So...I have decided to turn  to some creative outlets.  I spend a lot of time reading other blogs.  I read horse blogs and some dog blogs.  I admit it I read the Housewives' blogs, but my absolute favorite blogs are those of the "crafty" women.  These women create the most beautiful items for the home and garden. They are young(er), pretty and have beautiful old homes. They can paint, sand, and use tools!  I envy them.  Sure I blog, but they not only make perfect crafts and re purposed furniture, but they take great photos and give step-by-step tutorials!  I love them.  One idea that kept grabbing my attention was the use of Chalk paint.  This is not Blackboard chalk paint, this is expensive water-based paint that goes over any finish.  No stripping or sanding needed.

Perfect stuff for an impatient crafter like me. I found some locally and got to work.  I have an old Bombe chest that belonged to my mother and decided I would try out my new skills.

See, my photo skills suck!  But this is the chest with the drawers removed.  Two coats of Annie Sloan Chalk paint later and voila.

The piece is actually darker in person.  I also learned how to use the very important wax to finish and "age" the chest.  I LOVED doing this.  I first painted the chest Paris Grey.  It looked really great, but the ole Farmhouse does not lend itself to grey, so....I repainted.  This paint sticks to anything.  Please send me your old furniture , I'll work for peanuts! I cannot stop thinking of projects to do.  Speaking of projects I finished my snack tray project.  I painted (chalk paint- what else?) the top and did a graphic transfer and it worked!!

Fun stuff. 
I think my head may explode with all of these ideas floating around in it.  When it gets too overwhelming I play Candy Crush. Help!
In other news The Farmhouse is now adorned with more window treatments.

We had roman shades made for the den. They add a nice warm touch to the room.
That's all for now.  I've got furniture to paint.
Thanks for stopping by.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Carriage House Update

Is is "normal" to love a garage?  I sure hope so, because, I love my garage.  Maybe it's because I lived without one through the most hideous of winters, but I really , really am enjoying our garage!  It is not totally finished, but it is totally functional and that's all I care about at this point.

Jason did a great job of reusing the existing brick and creating a center panel.  We still need to paint the new wood to match the rest of the structure.  He also created an opening on the side closer to the house.

We removed the brick and siding and added a door.  Notice the window above the door.  I like how he used half of the existing window.  Sort of like a transom. This too, has to be painted.  We also added the step and matched it to the existing walkway.

Hard to see with the snow, but it matches perfectly.  The final step will be paving the area in front of the garage.  The house originally had cobble stones, while pretty to look at, they were dangerous to walk on.  Wes tore them up last fall and put down asphalt millings.  We will pave when the weather warms up. I can't wait to pave because the milling are a mess!! Whenever they get wet , which is all of the time, they get tracked in the house by dogs and people alike.  Yuk!

I have been experimenting with Transferring the French Typography I told you about last time.  This is my latest effort.

The Mod Podge method did not work for me, so I hand painted the image with the help of graphite tracing paper.  This is an old side table that is pretty beat up, but I like the way it turned out.

I am now exploring the world of Annie Sloan Chalk Paint.  Stay tuned!  This may prove to be amusing.
Thanks for stopping by.