Thursday, March 31, 2011

A Love Affair With a Flower

I am a daydreamer and often I am daydreaming about flowers. I love them along with most anything else you can grow. My biggest problem has been that until now I have not had much space to grow what I want.

Years ago before I got married I hated roses. I saw them as a high maintenance plant that looked ugly and gangly. Sure I liked roses OK but not enough to value them over other flowers and my impression of the rose bush made me prefer other flowers.

Then after I had been married a while and had been clear about my opinion of the rose to my husband, I saw this image from an old Martha Stewart Mag. It rocked my world...

I didn't even know roses could look this romantic. Before I knew what had gotten a hold of me I found my self dreaming of a garden such as this. Then before my husband knew it, I was asking for for a rose bush for mothers day.

 In his confused state, due to me telling him I hated roses, he took me to a garden nursery and we picked out my Eden. I didn't have a garden yet but had faith that we would by the next planting season. It was small enough to safely live in its nursery pot and I made sure it survived the move.

Here is my dear little bush that I hope will someday grow up to resemble the fated photo that changed my view of one of the worlds most favorite flowers. I cant stop thinking about our new yard and am planning where to plant my Eden. One interesting thing to note is that I have found at least five rose bushes on our future property and one of them is a climber. It is going to be a glorious summer.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I am Crazy

I know, I know, we are moving in two and a half weeks but I just cant stop myself from getting distracted by projects I have out in our garage. Before we moved I had picked up a few pieces of furniture for free or dirt cheap that I kept thinking I would fix them up and then sell them. The problem is that I really like them. The other problem is that we are moving into a house that we are going to be working on from the get go. That means there is not going to be a lot of room for furniture or storage. I have been going through everything I own and purging. I have taken quite a bit to the thrift store already. Last week I thought I would fix up all the furniture and then sell it before we moved so I wouldn't have anything extra laying around. So last week I started to work on them only to fall in love and decide to keep them. One of the projects I have is a large lovely table. The photo below it the exact table and it has become my inspiration (it came from a decorating magazine years ago).

I really wanted to find a product to use that was non-toxic. The thing I hate about paint and stains is that the non-toxic stuff is so dang expensive. I researched and have found an old form of finishing that has fallen out of popularity by the average do- it - yourselfer but is known as the "best" by professional woodworkers.

 Shellac flakes are a resin secreted by insects. They dissolve into denatured alcohol and when the alcohol is evaporated off it becomes completely non-toxic and food safe. Shellac has been used as the primary wood finishing product for hundreds of years. Only in the last century have all the other stains and finishes that flood up the shelves at common stores come to be. Shellac was a little hard to find but I tracked some down locally and it is supposed to turn out a red-brown. I am a little nervous because it can be tricky to apply until you get the hang of it.

Here is a shot of my one pound bag for about 25 dollars. I bought some denatured alcohol for seven dollars. It took about 48 hours to dissolve. The cool thing is that I only used 1/2 the bag and the leftover flakes have an extremely long shelf life. I am excited to stain my table. I will keep you posted, and hopefully I will be able to share my other projects with you too.

I linked up to  Wow Us Wednesdays you should go check it out.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Not what I Imagined...

We found a house!

3507 N Normandie St              

This little brick Tudor house from the 30's is not at all what I envisioned as my first house. After finding out we had to move after being unpacked for only 2 weeks we decided that we didn't want to stay in this homesitting business. We thought when we signed up to sit the home we are in that we would have 3-6 months or even a year to house shop and find our dream home. Sometimes things don't go as planned. We got really serious about finding something and spent every night looking. It was exhausting and not the fun adventure I wanted it to be. 

Just when we didn't think we were going to find anything in our price range we found this little gem. The neighborhood is quiet and filled with houses similar to the one we are buying. Oddly enough, when we started we completely ruled out houses that had less than 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. This one is a 2 bedroom with only 1 bathroom. The thing that sold us on it is that it has a full basement that we can grow into, as well as an unfinished attic. I am talking a huge unfinished attic with windows. 

Some of my favorite things about this house we are going to buy is that on the inside it has what I call old world charm. Every single doorknob is an antique crystal knob. If you know me you know that I am into that kind of stuff. Also there is a red stained glass window in the bathroom that opens! It has arches and original restored woodwork and hardwood floors. I like to say..."It is charming."

Here is another picture of the back. Stay tuned for our renovations, restorations, and decorations!

3507 N Normandie St              
Oh and by the way I did not take these pictures I got them off the Windermere website, the grass is not that green yet here.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Happy Birthday!

It was my birthday last weekend and we had a lot of fun. My husband was really sweet and I love the nice things he did for me. I thought I would post a couple of pictures for all of you who weren't here to celebrate with us. Thank you to everyone who sent me a card it was really sweet!

New Digs...

Sorry I haven't posted in a while we have been really busy setting up shop in our new residence. I wanted to show you all what our new home looks like even though I think it is going to be short lived. We decided to rent from a homsitting service and the rent is really good and there is not a lease, leaving us the option to leave at any time if we buy our own home. The flip side is that the houses that get sat are either snowbird houses or houses on the market and they can sell at anytime. After a few conversations with our landlady in which she told us we could be in this house for quite a while, there has suddenly been a change and we are now having to prepare to move again because it is getting given back to the bank.

So without further ado..

This is my favorite view, I love looking into the dinning room especially when there are flowers. Look closely, I had a helper in quite a few of these shots.

Our little guys room, he can now say "room." I love that it has less furnature because we have more space to spread out. Now it is just his stuff.

Master bed room, sorry it is a little dark, there is no overhead light in there.

And the kitchen, it is much bigger than our last house but quite different because we don't have a dishwasher here. I almost think I like it because I notice myself cleaning the sink more.

The crazy bathroom that scared everyone when we first got here. It had a pretty nasty shower curtain and was quite dirty. After some white accessories and a good scrubbing it is not half bad. A funny thing is that we eventually discovered that the "tile" on the walls are individual plastic tiles, totally weird.

And our lovely living room. All in all it is a good house. We also have a super creepy basement and a two car garage that is filled with boxes. I was going to move most of them into the basement so we could park in there but I am surely not doing that if we are moving in a month.Stay tuned to see our next living space and forgive me if there aren't very many posts for a while. If anyone wants to come help me re-box everything just come on over.