Change on the horizon

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It’s definitely time for a check in!

It’s been a mighty fine summer. I am feeling, just as I have last few years, very sad to see it go.

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Perhaps even more so this year with the impending polar vortex that is scheduled by mother nature to come through Michigan in September, and the insane winter we had last year.

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It must be my age that has changed my outlook on the seasons.  I can remember longing for fall, and being so pumped up for football and orchard weather.  NOT NOW!!!   I think I would be down right content if summer lasted for 8 months, then winter and fall could each take two months apiece.

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I find myself extremely reluctant to battle snow and ice these days, and now understand my Mom’s distaste for fall.  It’s not autumns fault, it’s just that it’s the harbinger of winter.  But I will clam my worries by living in the moment, and enjoying all that summer has left to offer. Surely the beautiful scents, and colors of fall will carry me through the frozen tundra until spring.  If not there’s always Florida, hehe, am I right?

We’re working on the Shasta and I’m excited to share some pictures very soon! We’re almost done, just finishing up the exterior paint job and ordering the Shasta wings.

This summer has been the “try new quilt blocks” summer for me, as far as quilting goes.

I became fascinated by,  and enamored with log cabin pineapple blocks. So I ordered up a Craftsy class and template and started one of my own.  I have some borders to plan and add, but I like it so far.

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I pieced together a few online tutorials, and added some of my own math to make a “Victory Garden” knock off.  It was on my quilt bucket list. Check!

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I’m finishing up the last rows of this kaleidoscope block quilt.  I ordered the kaleido ruler a month back, and couldn’t wait to try it.  They are fun little blocks.

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We have a week left until school starts and I’m interviewing for an “out of the house” job this week.

Yikes, changes are a coming!

Melissa

Digging in the dirt

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If your not into gardens you might want to skip this one.  Tons of baby garden pic’s ahead!!

We’ve been diligently working on our landscaping since the snow melted.   If only we had a million bucks right? We’ve got grand plans, but they involve  loads of dirt, rocks, driveway ashfault,  plants, trees, and bushes  that are just not in the budget.  We remind ourselves often: one step at a time. =)

I ran across this photo taken a few days before we moved in to our house and it did make me feel better.  What a jungle, you couldn’t even see the front stairs!!

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We cleared out all the overgrown flora and fauna and planted two manageable boxwood bushes in front. They are still babies, but will hopefully grown to nice round big guys.

There are very few sunny spots on our property to plant the flowers I love unless we just plopped a garden bed in the middle of nowhere!! Which I just might do someday.  But there are three spots.  The first is right behind our house.

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This bed is filled with purple coneflower, blackeyed susans, purple salvia, moonbeam coreopsis, lambs ear, sedum, shasta daisy, and some lillys that are just about to bloom.  Can’t wait!!

I had an extra ladder around so I threw it out here to hold my garden tools

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Just around the  corner on the side of the house is another sunny spot. Unfortunately this is also where all the electric and meter reading doo dads are.  Nothing messes up your pretty garden pictures like electric boxes. hehehe

This bed is pretty much all new plants this year with the exception of the spider wart, lilly, and roses.

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The roses were so pretty this year!! I just cut them back and hope to see another bloom.

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I used to think spider wart was just a weed, but it does look pretty in the morning when the flowers are open.

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Our new additions to the bed are:  Foxglove getting read to burst open.

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5 new hollyhocks

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A baby purple salvia

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I forgot what this is called but I love the wispy stems these purple flowers bloom on.

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There are two new of these things that I can’t remember either! Ha I think it’s in the pinks or carnation family??

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And one of these English moss rose plants

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It will be exciting to watch this bed fill out.

The other tiny little sun spot we have is at the right end of our shade garden.  There is a Rose of Sharon bush growing there  and another dratted day lilly (we have both of those ALL OVER and have to keep digging them out.)

I just planted some new sun lovers there this weekend.

A pink yarrow, purple Jacobs ladder, two delphiniums that are about to pop open and a hibiscus.

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The shade garden still needs some filling out but we are so pleased and geeky about our hostas!! We go out to watch them grow all the time.

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One addition in the shade garden we are excited about is this scottish plant.  It’s the prettiest green with tiny white flowers.

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We are trying our hand at a veggie garden this year. We put it out in the side yard.  We’re not sure if it will get enough light, but as I mentioned we are light challenged around here.  We planted tomatoes, cukes, cabbage, cauliflower, zucchini, squash, green pepper, onion, and sugar snap peas.

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The peas are climbing like champs!

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And the cauliflower is starting to make heads!!!

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Doesn’t take much to thrill us with our first veggie patch!! HAHAHA

Probably our biggest gardening feats to date is FINALLY getting grass to grow around our patio and fire pit!!! YAAYYY!

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We have plans to clear out the weedy mess along our driveway today.  I better go find some bandaids for my blisters!!

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Later gators!

Melissa

Summerizing the Homestead

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One of my favorite things to do each season is make new pillows.  It is amazing what a new pillow can do to change the mood in the house.  This year for summer I made simple red/white and blue/white striped pillows.  They feel nautical and patriotic at the same time to me, which is just what the season calls for!

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Besides my new pillows the things I am most excited about with my Summer decor this year are:

1. I finally quilted and bound my red and white quilt!!! I’m in love! It lights up the whole family room. It’s my favorite quilt ever. =) There is no pattern, just the very center paper pieced star block is from  Judy Niemeyer,  then  I added square in a square’s and some applique and borders to it.  It’s finished off with a scalloped border.

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2. This old coke box I found while antiquing,  another vintage red lantern, and a very sweet milk glass red and white bottle  for the kitchen table.

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3. My recent obsession with vintage picnic tins.

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5. It’s my first summer to decorate the mantel without the huge ugly mirror!

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It obviously doesn’t take much for me to get excited! Hehehe.

Later gators!

Melissa

Summer Porch Spruce Up

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After our bedroom makeover this winter, our front porch floor was a disaster.  I had gotten stain and paint all over it knowing I would have to repaint the floor out there this spring.

Last week the porch floor repainting job got checked off the list and while I was at it decided to give it a little Summer makeover.

I  just had to go to the antique store to help me out don’t ya know!

I found these adorable lanterns and cute vintage coffee can that shout summer to me.

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What would summer be without yummy drinks?

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I found this neglected little wicker chair hiding in a corner at the antique store and gave it a once over with white spray paint.  Then I made a new cushion out of chenille and a vintage table cloth.  The pillow is from the same table cloth with a little pom pom trim added for good measure. =)

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I rounded up some red and white quilts and my vintage picnic accessories and made a little vignette on the old school desk.  I also made some new 4th of July pillows.

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It’s now a refreshed spot for morning coffee!

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Ahhhh summer…I love ya!

Later gators,

Melissa

Shasta Switch-a-roo

We  sold and said goodbye to our dear friend the 1961 Shasta compact about a month ago.  Although we loved it, we really out grew it. Our kids always want to sleep in the camper with us.  They are getting much bigger and we just don’t fit.

As soon as it pulled out I was so bummed!!   I’ve hopped on craigslist to look for a replacement everyday since.  Once you’ve had a vintage camper there is really a hole in your heart if you don’t have one. =)

I was having visions of us all sleeping in the tent all summer because it’s really hard to snap one of these babies up!

I hit pay dirt on Monday.  I was the first caller 5 min. after someone posted a 1967 Shasta 1500. I told the man he would get a million replies within an hour so I was coming with cash RIGHT NOW.  We jumped in the car and took an 8 hour drive and bought it!!!  He said that about 10 people were willing to snap it up right after I replied. Shewww.

We’ve lost a lot of the cute factor, but the functionality is AWESOME.  I’ve never had a fridge before. hehehe  And we can make it super cute with a new paint job and some new Shasta wings.

Here are the before pic’s of our new summer home project:

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I can’t believe how roomy it feels compared to the c0mpact, even though it’s only 1 foot longer.

Front dinette converts to twin bed.

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The little kitchen with cute princess stove

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The rear couch that converts to a full sized bed and the overhead full sized bunk.

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Maybe most importantly, the fridge!! and little pantry/utility closet.

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You know I am itching to sew up new curtains, upholster the cushions, and start decorating!!

After pic’s as soon as I get going. =)

Later gators,

Melissa

Industrial Chic Bedroom Makeover on a dime.

Here are some details of our bedroom makeover.

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I found out that high end Industrial Chic furniture and decor is VERY expensive. But I used some good ole DIY and had some good luck shopping to achieve the look I wanted for much less.

My advice:

1. Shop around in unexpected places (Big mega grocery stores, home improvement stores, etc) And stop back often to check on sales.

2. Build or craft  a replica of  the pricier decor and furniture pieces if you can’t afford them.

3. Look around your house and see what you can revamp.

The locker cart bedside tables were an amazing find.  I saw them on Dot and Bo website where they retail for $400.00 a piece. They were on sale for $249.00. That was still WAY too high for my makeover budget.

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I decided to keep looking around my area to find something I could afford. Low and behold, I kid you not the very same locker carts were at my local Meijer grocery store.  They were marked down 75 % from $200.00 to $50.00.  I think I may have shouted “no way” right in the isle.   I just scored two tables for $100.00 that I could have paid $800.00 for.  Not bad!!

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I wanted an upholstered headboard and started my search online. I liked this one from Bonanza for $215.00

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I found the very same one from Walmart online, delivered straight to my door for about $157.00!

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We also desperately needed some new dressers.  I knew that was going to cost some money, but I wasn’t prepared for just HOW MUCH money.

This dresser , similar to what I wanted, from Wayfair is $977.99! Um, I don’t have 2000.00 to spend on a place to put our underwear.  I wish I did, then my underwear would be fancy enough to deserve 2000.00 worth of dressers. LOL

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So I started looking up dresser makeovers and looking for dressers from Craigslist and thrift stores to transform.  I was inspired by this wonderful dresser.

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Nothing came up.  But I did see a bunch of Ikea Rast Hacks, and decided that was the way to go.

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Rast’s are the little versatile pine three drawer chests from Ikea that cost 35 buckaroos each.  I bought 4 and about 50 dollars worth of wood and enlisted my Dad aka Bob the Builder  to help me build what I wanted.

We screwed them together, added a base , and a top. I’m getting pretty handy with a miter saw and nail gun these days! =)

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I stained the body and drawers with Rustoleum wood stain in Driftwood.  The top and the drawer pulls were stained with Minwax Ebony. I used stencils and craft paint to add special numbers (birthdays, anniversaries) to the drawers to mimic my inspiration photo.

Whoala- two dressers for about $200.00!  A savings of $1800.00!

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The little decor items can really add up too.  But with some bargain shopping I found some wonderful items in MY price range.

I wanted two architect lamps for the side tables: you could pay $170 dollars each for these from LampsPlus

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or even $30.00 each  for these from Target.

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But I scored mine for $16.00 each at Menard’s home improvement store. Cha-ching! So basically I got two for the price of one!

This industrial gear sculpture can be found online from 42.00- 60.00.

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I found mine at Hobby Lobby at 40 % off- totaling $16.00.

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I wanted a bench or trunk for the end of the bed to put our throw pillows on at night, but haven’t found luck finding what I want yet.  But I did find this old bench in our basement from the previous owners.  Pretty nasty, with cobwebs and old outdoor rung nailed on it:

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I ripped the old rug off, stained it and added padding and burlap, it will do for now until I find what I want!

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Hope you find something in this post to inspire a bedroom makeover of your own =)

Later gators,

Melissa

Linking to some part-ays!

Wow Us Wednesdays

The Inspiration Exchange

Funky Junk Interiors

Bedroom Makeover Accent Wall

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(Well don’t look at the top of our lopsided wall. We’ll add a piece of trim up there soon!!)

I’ve had some requests for details on the plank wall, so here goes:

I’ve been DYING to make a plank wall somewhere in my house.  Since our bedroom was severely lacking in style I knew that’s where the wall would go.

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I would of course have loved to find old barn wood or pallet wood or something cool and reclaimed, but since

1. I’m impatient

2. Our area of the world has been so covered in snow and ice, it’s hard to get out and look for said reclaimed wood.

So instead we used 4-  4 x8 sheets of Oak plywood I purchased at Lowes (29.00 each)  and had them cut it down to 5 inch planks.  So the planks were 5 x 8 when I brought them home.

Once I got them home I set up a couple saw horses and started staining and painting the planks. (Sorry no pictures)

Over the course of two days I prepared the planks. I used Rustoleum’s  Driftwood, Weathered Gray, Dark Walnut, and Willow wood stains.  I bought a couple of little sample paint pots at Lowe’s too in gray, turquoise, light blue, and white. Once I had all the planks stained I dry brushed different combinations of the paints over some of the planks.

I then painted the room and all the trim. I left the plank wall the tan color it already was because seriously why would I paint something I don’t have to? =)  AND  I thought it would be a more neutral color for behind the planks

Then it was time to install.

My loving father had given us a miter saw some time ago, but do you think we could find it? Someone must have stolen it out of our garage in our last home. So we purchased a new miter saw and  a finish nail gun. I highly recommend borrowing or buying these two items if you’re going to do a plank wall.  It made it go so fast!!

We started at the top.  It’s important to make sure this top row is level!! Even if your house is insanely lopsided like our old girl!! Haha. If not your plank wall could end up diagonal.

We used a level to make sure it was straight , started from left to right,  and just used the finish nail gun to nail them right to the wall. (Our wall was a weirdly paint finished plywood underneath so we didn’t have to worry about a million nail holes. If we decide to take it down after a few years, we’ll just remove both layers and drywall.)

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All the following rows we installed  from right to left so we would have a nice clean edge on the angled wall on the right side of the room (it’s where the chimney is.)

I would just chop all different sizes of planks, bring them up to The BG and he would nail away. We tried to vary size and color as we went along.

Here we are finished in the evening:

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We’re still trying to decided what to trim it out with at the top?? and searching for the perfect mirror to hang above the bed.

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Later gators!

Melissa