Free for (F)all Decor

Like many people, autumn has always been my favorite time of year.  The colors, the smell, football, the crisp air…living in Ohio, we get the whole fall experience.  I was outside with the kids this afternoon, and played around some fall-ish decor ideas from stuff I found in our yard or garage.

 

Very simple – just an overturned wooden box with white candles scattered on top.  I think you could do 1 candle or 30….I’d just be sure to use varying heights and sit them on overturned cups (or something similar) to give more dimension beyond short and tall pillars.

Not really your typical fall arrangements, but it might inspire other ideas?  What’s your favorite season and why?

Linking to

The Shabby Creek Cottage
HookingupwithHoH 

Somewhat Simple

Weekend Bloggy Reading
The Shabby Nest

Boogieboard Cottage 

 

 

 

 

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take care –

 

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Trying to pack….unsuccessfully

We are supposed to be moving to the new house next weekend…yippeeeee!!!  I.can’t.wait….no more noisy neighbors partying until 4am (ahem, last night), no more revving motorcycle engines at 9:30pm, no more surprise landscaper or maintenance men visits during nap time.

Packing, however, is not going so well…emme is used to almost-constant attention from me, and that’s nearly impossible when trying to pack the kitchen.  At almost-10 mos old, she still has spontaneous falls, so I try to keep her away from as many hard surfaces as possible.  I’ve packed 2 boxes in the last 4 hours.  this progress does NOT=success.  At this rate, we’ll be living here with the next set of renters.

As….uhhh…frustrating as this is, even more worrisome is what I’ll do with her when I’m trying to put it all away.  She’s almost 25 pounds, so I can’t wear her.  Plus, I had all these great plans of painting Max’s room, and starting my business (more on that later – just don’t have the space here to start my projects until we move)….which may be pretty challenging with my constant-companion.  I absolutely ADORE Emme (and Max, of course – but we’re talking about E) – she’s my last baby, she’s chubby, and smiley, and funny…and I want to enjoy every minute of both my babies childhoods that I can….but I also have the small obligation of making our home habitable for them and my very-hard-working husband.

Happy (non-screaming) Emme

…oops, had to step away for a moment….Max was trying to launch himself off of the bar stools (that he’s not supposed to be near) and because I had to step away from Emme momentarily, she had a small breakdown.  I have a feeling the next couple weeks will be a(nother)  test of patience.

Serenity now.

Renovation Reality

My husband and I met when he bought his house. I was his real estate agent. Crazy, huh? He bought the house in May 2007, and planned to renovate and sell by September 2007. He chose a local contractor who came highly recommended by my husband’s mortgage broker.

Here’s a peek at the house (built in 1908) – pre $150,000 renovation lawsuit-blood-sweat-many tears:

The front, obviously. Do you like the wire hanging from the ceiling where a light fixture should be? When it rained, water would pour through the hole, and when it was cold, we would get a lovely icicle.

 

And the back…notice the black tarp on the left? The man who owned the house before us had dug out a bunker under where a porch use to be…by hand, with buckets. Odd.

Don’t worry, I have more pictures. To make a long, heartbreaking story short, when we were about $80,000 into the reno, we realized that of the 26 items on the original estimate, only 14 had been started, and not one had been completed. NOT.ONE. We weren’t living in the house at the time, so when we would come out to check on the progress, the contractor would make promises and give explanations…we were so deep, we thought the easiest way to proceed would be to move into the house (with no hot water, finished kitchen, or bathroom doors) and keep a closer eye on things. We quickly realized that we had made a terrible mistake by trusting this contractor.

We were left with a house that was maybe 25% finished, and we only had about $10,000 left to finish the project (which we quickly realized was not nearly enough) So begins the blood, sweat, and tears part of the story. The hardest I’ve ever worked – and we planned a wedding and had a baby during it too. Instead of 3 months, it took 3 years. Here are a couple more pictures – showing before and after. Sorry some of the pictures aren’t so great, unbelievably, we didn’t really take “after” pictures.

                        

FOYER – There use to be a low ceiling in the foyer. We had it removed and the correlating wall, but the contractors couldn’t figure out how to finish the railing to match the existing lower portion of steps.  The wall and closet on the left were removed, the picture on the right shows what was left.

This is how the contractors left the newly created laundry room…knowing we were moving in that day. (Before they started working there, these floors had been in perfect condition.)  Oh, and they never hooked up the plumbing, so the 1st time I did laundry…water was pouring into our basement, which as you’ll see below, had dirt floors.

Basement…or something.  The  rectangular mound on the left was once a 10 foot deep abyss.

                                                                 

BEFORE- On left, original master bath – and only bathroom in the house.  On right, once they tore down kitchen ceiling below the bathroom, they found serious water damage, so the whole bathroom floor came out.

 

 

 

Originally, a parlor  for the master bedroom, but we added a hallway to make it a small 3rd bedroom.

Original kitchen.  These were all of the cabinets, the opposite wall just had a stove on it.      

Thankfully, we survived, so there are “after” pictures to share.   This post has reminded me to take lots of pictures of our next house, I can’t believe how few I have of the last house!

Thanks,

e

Finally….The First Post…

I’ve been planning to start a blog to keep track of my babies since before my first, Max, was born in the summer .  I’ve put it off because I have over 2 years of catching up to do, and I didn’t know where to start.  Before another day passes or anymore  milestones achieved, I thought it best to start now and catch up on the past over time.

Hopefully, one day they”ll read this and find some interest / entertainment in our daily life.

I’m also planning to use this blog to share the renovation of our new home and my attempt at starting a new business.  I’ve had my own business before, but this is something I’m much more excited about.  I won’t really be able to share my pictures and ideas until we are settled in our new house in September.

Please feel free to comment (nicely, please) or ask me anything you’d like.