Restoring Our Old Farm House No 2 - Kitchen

Saturday, June 28, 2014

The kitchen is the heart of the home so that's where I'll begin our remodeling tour. I must warn you the before pictures are pretty scary and if you think it looks bad, you should have smelled it and felt it. It was July in Texas!
The bottom cabinets had red Bakelite handles, which I salvaged.
This photo was taken standing in the kitchen looking into what is now the dining area. We removed this wall and the low ceilings to open the kitchen and dining into one large room with vaulted ceilings. I wish I had taken a picture the day we pulled the ceilings down. You cannot even imagine the mess it created.
You'll notice a lot of time passed between the the first set of pictures and the one above. There was a lot of work to be done before we could begin the pretty parts. All new electrical, all new plumbing and septic system, all new water lines and gas lines, central heat and air, insulation, new roof, all new windows, two layers of old exterior siding removed, new siding installed, walls and doors removed, ceilings torn out...
 ...old sheet-rock torn out, ancient wallpaper pulled down, new sheet-rock installed and new wood floors installed. You should know that we are 30 miles, one way, from Home Depot.
It was very exciting when things began to take shape.
We installed pine plank ceilings throughout the house and adapted galvanized barn lights to be used in the kitchen/dining room.
Here Mark is laying the new wood floors. He started in the farthest corner of the house and worked his way to the front door.
We planned the cabinet layout and purchased the units individually and assembled them ourselves.
I chose to use drawers in all the bottom cabinets and ten years later I still love them. I also used a sheet of galvanized metal as the back splash for my stove which works great! Rather than upper cabinets all the way across, I chose to have windows on both sides of the stove. I love to be able to see outside!
Bead board fills the space between the upper and lower cabinets.
Here is a current picture of the same area. I've added an island using an old table with casters and a wine rack from the springs of a baby bed (we'll save that for another day).

Here's a Heart Rock for your pocket:
The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. 2 Peter 3:9

Wishing you God's best,
Elaine

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A Little Something Lovely... No 4

Friday, June 27, 2014

I was out picking veggies one evening this week and found this little guy hanging out in my asparagus. I was bent down looking for cucumbers and when I turned around he was right there, eye ball to eye ball, watching me. At first he startled me, within inches of my face, and then when he didn't flee I realized this was probably his first trip from the nest and he was too weak and scared to flee. Bless his heart! His mama was standing guard and throwing a fit to distract me. Bless her heart, too! 
Baby Mockingbird
Here's a Heart Rock for your Pocket:
"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." 2 Corinthians 12:9

Wishing you God's best,
Elaine

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Radio Flyer Wagon on the Front Porch

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Earlier this month, I shared my front porch with you. (you can see it here) It was several days afterwards that I realized I didn't include the picture I had taken of my wagon, so now it gets to be in the spotlight alone. 
I had been wanting an old Radio Flyer for my front porch, but they can be hard to find. I found this one at Canton, TX. It is very faded, but I like things that show their age and have stories to tell. 
For me, wagons always evoke memories of childhood. Like this one...
I remember this day... our Granny lined us all up in the wagon so she could take our picture. That's me in the back with my cousins and one of my sisters. (I was getting squashed!)
The wagon makes a great display on the porch and I change it with the seasons. In the fall, I fill it with pumpkins and at Christmas it holds a small cedar tree. Really cute!
In the summer, it's perfect for flowers and can be easily moved around. 
I hope that whoever the little child was that found it under their Christmas tree or wrapped with a great big bow for their birthday has wonderful memories of their wagon. I'm just keeping it safe for them. Just looking at it makes me happy. I wonder if their Granny took pictures too?!

Here's a Heart Rock for your Pocket:
 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28

Wishing you God's best,
Elaine

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Red, White and Blue!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

The 4th of July conjures up all sorts of great memories for me and most of them involve fireworks! Every year as The Boy was growing up, we would take a blanket and picnic down to the banks of the Red River and wait for the sun to set and watch the fireworks. Fun! Fun! Fun! We lived just outside of the Barksdale Airforce Base so we were surrounded by service men and women daily which was a constant reminder that others are always there defending our great country.
Nothing evokes feelings of patriotism more than the flag or red, white and blue so I've created a tablescape that contains both, but in my own vintage quirky style.

I've included vintage cobalt blue and white milk glass and an old Milk of Magnesia bottle to hold flags.

 
Then I added vintage red, white and blue sewing notions just for fun.
Red and white tea towels serve as place mats and I had to include red bandanas for napkins. I am from Texas, you know. The starfish are just a fun play off of the traditional "stars and stripes".
Happy 4th of July!! 

Here's a Heart Rock for your Pocket:
“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name; you are Mine! Isaiah 43:1b


Wishing you God's best,
Elaine

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Vintage Inspired Coffee/Tea Stations at Home

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

In my kitchen, I have combined vintage items with modern convenience to create two separate drink stations, one for tea and one for coffee. A fun vintage cafe cup always makes either a little more special.
I have a cabinet full of mix matched cups picked up at garage/estate sales and flea markets. It's funny that my family members have their favorites and will search them out.
In my coffee station, I have an old aluminum canister with a flour tag that I found at a junk store in Australia and smuggled home in my luggage (along with many other things). It holds my grandson's "snacks" and s'more fix-in's. When you don't have a campfire, the microwave makes great s'mores!
 An old silver tray holds a Keurig...
...and a vintage glass cookie jar, which holds the K-Cups...
...and a Mason jar contains instant hot chocolate. I also have Mexican hot chocolate and Cinnamon sticks. YUMMO!
A vintage Avon hen makes a great sugar bowl and she's cute.
 At Christmas, I add peppermint sticks, for hot chocolate, in an old tarnished creamer that belonged to my grandma. 
Across the room, I have an electric water kettle (one of my favorite and most used gadgets) and assorted teas in vintage jars, which I absolutely love!
They all sit on a long enamel baking sheet.
This small baking pan is just the right size to hold tea bags. I couldn't have planned it more perfectly! (another smuggled item from AU) 

So, there you have it! I enjoy recycling old items and giving new life to things once discarded. How about a cup of tea?

Here's a Heart Rock for your Pocket:
Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.” John 4:13-14

Wishing you God's best,
Elaine

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Restoring Our Old Farm House

Saturday, June 14, 2014

This weekend marks the 10th anniversary of the day we bought our 1932 farm house. Our "run down, filthy, full of junk, smelled so bad you couldn't hardly breathe, no air conditioning, everybody thought we were crazy" farm house. We lovingly called it our "fixer upper" and boy were we excited.
We were not intimidated by the fact the electrical and plumbing would have to be completely redone. We would just fix it! And fix it we did! By we, I mean my husband Mark. That man can do anything! ...and I am his "lovely assistant" (or so I would like to think). We are both DIY-ers and have a really hard time paying someone to do something for us that we can do ourselves and we like the sense of accomplishment.
We worked on the house and property every weekend (every waking moment) while working full time, going to school and commuting between Texas and Louisiana. The photo above was 16 months into our project. The exterior of the house was almost complete at this point and we actually moved in the following February in 2006.
We didn't want to change the appearance of our house, so we rebuilt every aspect of it just the way it was originally. We took every inch of this house apart and then put it back together. We've touched every nail, shingle, floor board, pvc pipe, window... A lot has changed in ten years and I will share the interior with you over the weeks to come.

Happy Anniversary Old House!!

Here's a Heart Rock for your Pocket:
Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain. Psalm 127:1

Wishing you God's best,
Elaine

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A Little Something Lovely... No 3

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Here's quick picture to brighten your day...
...and a Heart Rock for your Pocket:
Be still, and know that I am God! Psalm 46:10

Wishing you God's best,
Elaine

Join me over at:
Thoughts from Alice
Creative County Mom's Garden
Cedar Hill Farms
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