Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Living room built ins

Here is a picture of our living room when we first walked through the house:

Here is what it looked like when we closed on our house:

Here are a couple in between pictures:

And here is what it looks like now:

For the most part, it is done!  Chad did all the building.  We purchased unfinished, Amish crafted bookshelves and cabinets.  He removed the bottoms of the bookshelves and stacked them on top of each cabinet and viola!  He added the plank wall behind the TV and added the molding to the top and along the floor.  He also removed the cabinet door fronts and cut decorative metal sheeting to fit so that the remotes work with the doors closed.  And all the components (Xbox, cable box, dvd player, dvds, etc.) are hidden.  I did all the painting.  Notice I used the same mustard color on the back bead board that we used in our Texas dining room?!  (It is actually that same paint.  We packed it and brought it with us...  insert maniacal laugh).  You can see how we built those here and styled them here.  We still need knobs... which my wonderful mother said she would look for next time she is at Hobby Lobby.  Thanks Mom!

The mantle is an antique that we found at an antique fair back when we were living in the corporate apartment!  We were told that it was over 150 years old.  It is heavy and covered with years of dirt and memories.  We stored it in the apartment garage and crossed our fingers that it would fit.  Thank goodness it did!  We cleaned the mantle up a bit and left it as is.   Chad bought old growth barn wood from a 200+ year old barn that was being taken down here in Ballston Spa that is going to be transported and rebuilt...  in Texas!  How's crazy is that?!  He cut the barn wood to fit behind and bump out the mantle a bit.

One last BEFORE:

And one last AFTER:

Quite a change.  I am so happy it is done!  The finished pictures were taken with my phone, hence the bad quality.   I plan to take pictures with my real camera and will then show the entire living room.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Our new house

Hello!  Does anyone even check this blog anymore?  I started this post MONTHS ago.  We have officially lived in New York for just over a year now.   We moved into our house nine months ago. Time to get caught up, huh?!

After looking at approximately 40 houses, we finally found one.  Our original plan was to find an old farmhouse on land.  Land would allow us to have room for the kids to explore - and I could finally have the goats and chickens I have always wanted.  We didn't find the right farmhouse on the right land.  So we went back and looked again at the houses that would work.  This house is located on a long, quiet cul-de-sac which is perfect for our kids.  The kids can ride their bikes/scooters or rollerblade with no traffic.  They have neighbors to play with and also two acres to explore.  Our backyard is all woods - perfect for trails and a tree fort!  And, we can still have chickens - someday!

Time to show some pictures.  Here is our house when we bought it!

Chad and I both disliked the outside of this house.  The faded blue shutters looked dull and the matching blue door was just plain ugly.  But, we knew we could change all that.

As soon as Mom and Dad arrived from Texas, we got to work on replacing the faded blue shutters with brand new black shutters.  Already a huge change!  The black shutters are a much better contrast on the yellow house.

Caleb even helped Papa with the hard-to-reach shutters.

As much as I hated the blue shutters, I loathed the front door.  It made me angry.   We priced a new front door and it was over $2,000 - for a basic door.  We decided to try and paint the front door first and see if it would be okay.   Thanks to Mom (and approximately 6 coats of paint) our door looks fabulous!

I chose two red paint swatches and we let Caleb pick the winning color.  He picked Show Stopper red and it is a perfect pop of color!

We didn't stop there.  Our little front porch needed something.  A railing.

I adore this railing.  It makes the porch feel bigger.  The black coordinates with the black shutters. Our teal milk crate even works!

Here is a BEFORE of the house:

And here is the AFTER:

The front door BEFORE:

And the front door AFTER:

We also:
*replaced the old light fixtures with larger ones (must be a Texas thing!)
*removed shrubs

This job is best done by a 12 year old on his 4 wheeler, while wearing pajama pants.

With a supervising dog.

*removed small pebbles that surrounded the front walk and replaced with larger, more practical stones.  Thanks, Dad!!

Okay, that is enough for now.   

Next up, the inside and more projects.  And homeschool.  And birthdays.  And animals.

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