March 31, 2015
Another surprise from the new house.
Our lovely lockers were built on site.
They'll soon be painted & then we can buy sweet
baskets for the cubbies that are above & below the
seating & coat hanging area. There are 4 for the adults
& then we have a smaller wall shelf to hang for Mr. B,
What kind of storage do you have in your mudroom?
March 29, 2015
Our fireplace mantels are now out at the acreage.
And our lovely builder has used extra shelving to protect the mantels from the trades while they sit, ready for installation. Over the next week, the painting will be complete. The floors will start to be installed the week of April 6th. Then the mantels can go in as the end pieces need to sit on top of the wood floors. I've loved seeing each phase of the building process but this one is the most exciting. To see our choices be installed, to see the bits & pieces of wood & plaster become a home. I'm most excited to see the window seats, once they are done, the lockers in the mudroom, the desk under the stairs in the alcove in the great room & the island in the kitchen. Soon, very soon!
A quick post to reveal the top coat color we have
finally chosen for the walls in our new house.
Not the best picture but one that shows the white
trim, along with the color "Winter Gray." It is
a warm & light lavender. Beautiful with the trim
& we hope will look great with the wood floors.
What color are the walls in your home?
We ventured out to the house on Thursday. Our builder wanted us to come out to see the progress & we couldn't believe how much had been completed since our last visit about 10 days ago. I'll have to create several posts to show all the progress. At this pace, we may end up moving by the end of April as he is predicting. Today, I'm showing how the handrails & footings were being made by hand by the most incredible woodcrafter. We are so impressed with his attention to detail & know that each time our hand glide along the smooth railings, we'll remember the things he showed us on this visit. I've added his picture at the end.
The footings for the posts on the landing.
The posts will "twist" into the hand rail.
The posts, painted a crisp white.
The footings & rails will be stained.
The curve of the handrail for the Juliette balcony.
The form that holds the strips & strips of wood.
The curved footing for the balcony.
A close up of the layers of wood.
The very proud craftsman. He is truly
enthusiastic about his craft. And it
shows how much he loves what he does!
Such a sweet, sweet & talented man.
I present to you, our Spring Decorating!
That's it! Everything is packed & my "seasons" shelf was empty. But we did dig up a few rogue pieces that were around the house & added a few new ones in that we bought at the thrift shop. Starting at the top, we have a lovely Easter tree, bought for a tidy sum of .25 cents. Next to it is my coveted glass jar of green speckled eggs. This was $8 but I've been looking forever for these eggs. They are heavy & hand painted, so I honestly didn't mind the higher price. And beside that, a sweet bunny. She was $1.75, so for $10, I was able to complete this shelf. The other items belonged to my dad in law. After his death in January, we had boxes of items to go through & we chose to keep these special pieces that have memories attached to them. They are all in our opinion, spring like & appropriate for display. Next year, our Spring Decorating will be more elaborate but for now, we'll enjoy this vignette for the season.
How is your Spring Decorating coming along?
March 25, 2015
On a rainy, windy night 19 years ago today, our youngest son, Bretton~Elijah Lucas was born. Too tiny to live, we said hello & then in an instant, we said goodbye to the little boy with tiny toes. His brief moment in our lives filled our hearts with big love. And we've never forgotten that night.
Bretton's name written in the sand on Salt Spring Island.
His cake today, to honor & celebrate him.
Forever loved, never forgotten.
March 23, 2015
Our railings arrived this week. I'm so happy with the style we chose. These will be painted white to match our trim, with the handrails & the end posts stained to match our wood floors. That will be a big challenge to match them.
Glad I don't have to be the painter or the stainer!
The staircase looks so open here but soon it will be safe & all finished off. A lovely spot in the house & pretty to look at.
March 22, 2015
We are so lucky to have a truly ingenious builder. He thinks of the neatest ideas. We have put a small theatre room in our lower lever. A place to gather with family for special movies nights.
The one wall will hold the electronics & we did envision putting a small bookcase here. But look what Mr. D. came up with instead! Built in shelves for the equipment & a corner unit to put our DVD's.
He's amazing! Always surprising us with ideas & suggestions. Such a great experience to be able to build with someone who really seems to truly want us to have our dream home forever.
I really enjoyed participating in the "Capture December" Photo Challenge. So it was easy to decide it was time to get out my camera & capture Spring with a new challenge.
I found 2 different challenges to choose from.
Now it's just to decide which one! I may have to, in the end, flip a coin to decide as they are both great.
Are you taking part in any blogging challenges this year?
After a very busy day, after my dh had gone to play hockey with his team, grandson was tucked into bed & younger dd was in her room, chatting with a friend, my dd & I surfed channels tonight. We finally stumbled across a new show that we had seen a commercial for. Titled "Neighbors with Benefits" it was definitely not our cup of tea! We did manage to watch about 1/2 the show & it created some vibrant discussion. Our final verdict: "swinging" with other partners is not something any of us could ever imagine being attracted to. Just can't see how it adds to a healthy relationship to share your love with someone else, physically. I personally believe a truemarriage is meant to be between 2 & no one else. But that is my comfort level & clearly it is not for others who are captured in this reality show. I'm truly not a prude, but yuck!
Have you ventured into watching this new series?
March 19, 2015
I read Carla's blog everyday & love when she posts about budgets. A favorite subject for this former banker! Today's post got me inspired to do a few notes on our budget. Always good to review on occasion.
So how is our budget, in this season of building a new house & a big move on the horizon? Not bad, not bad at all. Currently, we are mortgage free, so that has helped with our savings. However, we have also used part of those freed up funds to purchase items or building items for the new house that were not part of our original house budget. Things like the fireplaces we ordered from the States.
I won't tell you what is coming in as I do believe in some things not being public. But I am happy to share, as Carla has, what we spend money on. And freely show where all the money goes!
For the week of March 19th to the 26th, we need to pay for groceries, gas, our American Express full balance, & then we will add to our various savings accounts. We have one for emergencies, one for travel & one for retirement. Here's where the money goes:
* $225 for groceries including paper products
* $50 for dh's car to fill up with gas (mine is full)
* $34.68 to pay our AMEX in full (no balance ever)
* $300 to our savings for emergencies - no touching!
* $100 to our savings for travel for our trip in the fall
* $100 for our retirement savings fund (TFSA)
Grand total of $809.68. I'll allow $190.32 for extras. This gives us a working budget for the week of an even $1,000. I know we won't use the $190.32 unless something really drastic comes up that we haven't counted on. For now, if we don't use it, that rolls into the next week. We both get paid not long after. Dh's will show up in our account on the 27th of March, a Friday. He gets paid every other Friday. I get paid on the 31st as my pay periods are the 15th & 30th. My other pay comes in when I "remember" to pay myself, which is usually every couple of months & it goes straight to one of our savings accounts. Next week will be the "cushy" week with extras left over from this week & then 2 pays going in.
How's your budget working out for the month?
March 17, 2015
.... that we had hoped for & continue to marvel over as they are unwrapped. For example, we had no idea the door would also be framed in the black trim but look what we found on our trek out to the forest on the weekend.
Complete with this little detail that just, in our opinion, screams "character" & "vintage"!
I may have to sit on the front veranda & stare at the door & the trim, instead of the sunsets we know we'll get facing West. Just so pretty & sweet!
Do you have a favorite picture of your house?
Any details or character pieces you can share?
One of the reasons I wanted to take an extended break recently was to clear my crowded head & really focus on our new home & our upcoming move. I'm happy to say that the break worked & I can truly think in a much more clear & organized manner. However, I do feel the need to apologize as my head is now crowded with anything & everything to do with the new house & our move!
My posts her, on Facebook & even on Instagram are all house & move focused. I dream about it all day, I fall asleep with plans & lists in my head & wake up in the wee hours of the morning, excited to start the day all over again, with visions of our journey dancing through my head.
To my faithful blog buddies & newcomers, I sincerely apologize & do promise that soon, very soon, my posts will go back to the life I shared with you, BEFORE said house posts took over! I'm not sure what I'll talk about then or if I'll have anything to share but rest assured, the house & move chat will be much more subdued, if at all.
Back to regular programming, including
more house pictures & commentary posts!!
March 15, 2015
After months of worrying & wondering what they
would actually look like, today, the gables were
finished & we couldn't be happier with them!
Gray with black, tying in the green with the black.
Love the look. Now we have to decide if the proposed
& ordered shutters will be a nice finishing touch or
too much for the small space. We can send them back
if we don't like them. For now, we like love our gables!
March 13, 2015
.... at Ikea today ~ new tea pots & big mugs in
pretty spring colors. We didn't have a lot of time
today & our list of what to pick up was long. But
we stumbled on these new items & will go back.
Love the soft colors & sweet design.
Hard to tell in the picture but those mugs are a
really good size. Perfect on a cold winter's night!
Our weekends are pretty full now that we're in the last
few weeks of packing up & moving. Time to sell the
house! We have a few things to finish up before we
can list. The list is long but manageable. Want to see?
*pull out the storage unit from the laundry room
*rip up the old vinyl floor from the laundry room
*fill holes, scrape, then the walls in the laundry room
*scrape out the last little bits of thin set on the tiles
*grout then wash all the new tiles in the kitchen
*finish painting the last coat on the kitchen cabinets
*shop for then install the new drawer & cabinet knobs
*put down the new vinyl floors in the 1/2 bath, laundry
room & at the front door to give a fresh look
*finish up the last bits of baseboard & door trim
*paint said baseboards & trim & do touch ups
Packing & purging has gone well. Today, I'm packing
up our china cabinet then I'll tackle the last bits in my
art studio. On Monday, I hope to finish up the 4th
bedroom as we'll tackle the renos on the weekend.
Soon, soon, all this work will be done!!
March 11, 2015
March 8, 2015
We ordered some lovely lamp posts for the
new house. In the country, there will be no
lights at night, except on the house. Our wish
is to have family members & friends feel safe
& comfortable coming to visit at night. So
we found these great fixtures online & on sale.
We opened them up today & all the pieces are
intact, without any issues. Tomorrow, I'll be
putting the actual lamps outside for a solid
8 hours so the solar component can charge up.
Fingers crossed they work well. We love the
style & once they are set up at the acreage,
I'll post some pictures. Can't wait!!
Choosing our wall color has been quite a journey.
With a house full of vintage items, a background
in the arts & a visual, eclectic brain, the common
"builder's beige" was not even on our choice list.
Originally we chose a light butter yellow. But
after viewing it on the wall as our primer coat,
we knew it wasn't "our" color. So we went back
to our color palette. The one color that stood
out for us was "Winter Gray", a light lavender
shade that should go well with our antiques.
Can't wait to see this color splashed on the walls!
Our front hall in the new house is going to be such
a treat. It's spacious & open, light & airy. I'm truly
looking forward to welcoming guests into our home
when they arrive. A place for greetings & sweet hugs.
We have one dilemma though. How do you decorate
a wall that is almost 18 feet in height? We put in a
window at the top so it's bright but the wall space
has got me a bit perplexed. What to do, what to do!
Do we hang a large, colorful picture up there? Or a
beautiful, handmade quilt? A shelf? Or do we leave it
alone & let the expanse speak for itself? I'm not an
interior designer, just a mama who wants to make
great choices when it comes to decorating this new
house to highlight all the unique features our great
builder has included in the structure. A dilemma!
Do you have any suggestions for us for this spot?
What would you do if it was your new home?
March 6, 2015
A quick update from the country. Our new house is
wrapped & the siding is almost finished. We chose a
new product & it's proven to be a bit of a challenge
for the building team. But they're moving right along.
The majority of the house is a lovely sage green but
we did add grey to the end gable & in the peaks of
the windows on the upper bedrooms & the art studio.
We might "lose" our house in the summer when all the
green leaves are finally in bloom. But in the winter, it will
really stand out against the white, crisp, snowy background.
March 4, 2015
My first day back to work went really well. I was ready
& eager to see my dear comrades. Welcomed back with
open arms, my day was productive & affirming. I made
a small list of what I wanted to tackle & loved that it
became smaller throughout the day. With a start time
of 9:30 a.m. & an end time of 2:30 p.m., it was exactly
the right amount of time. Tomorrow will be the same
time, or maybe even a bit shorter as dd has a field trip
& I'll need to pick her up. I'm happy to be back & so
excited I was able to accomplish so very much today.
How was your Wednesday today?
Did you watch your to do list get smaller?
March 3, 2015
I've had the best gift for the few months. The gift of time,
given to me by my boss. I was able to take a break from
work for the last 8 weeks. Tomorrow would be exactly 8
weeks & it's my first day back. Almost 2 months of bliss!
The time away has been useful. I did quite a bit
of packing, purging & painting. I took time to relax,
to truly reconnect with myself, to ponder my future, my
career, my book & none of it had to be rushed. I'm sad to
go back as I was just getting into the groove of having
long periods of time for myself. But my crew missed me, I
missed them & referrals for new families who need grief
counselling are piling up. So grateful for this time & hope to
have another long break again one day. What a great
boss I have! A true treat & something I will always cherish.
Getting ready to move, shedding the "stuff" I don't need to
worry about any longer, re looking at how I function in my
work & my daily life, & time to write, sleep, heal & dream
was more than I could have ever dreamed of.
Have you ever had a chance to take a "real" break?
What did you do with your extended time off?
March 1, 2015
It took a while, but we finally chose our cupboards.
Simple shaker with a beaded lip.
This is what we envision our butler's pantry to look
like. The kitchen cupboards will be solid. A simple
but solid look. I hope it's easy to keep them clean.
And that the look will stay classic through the years.