Tuesday, May 25, 2010

A Few Garden Pics

I took these pictures last weekend, everything is twice as big now.  

Gardening is so magical.  You put a seed in the ground and it turns into something you can eat.  Wow!  We have planted:

-3 different kinds of Tomatoes
-Lots of different lettuces
-Bell peppers
-Butternut squash
-2 kinds of runner beans
-French beans
-2 kinds of carrots
-Every kind of herb I can get my hands on

We have a tiny patio but have planted lots of stuff in pots and tubs, it really is amazing how much you can grow in just a tiny space!  I would use all of our window sills too but I'm not allowed to go to the garden center for a while.  Sam is pretty sure when everything is in full swing there wont be enough room for us to sit outside.  He's probably right--I don't have a clue what I'm doing:) 

Sunday, May 23, 2010



Before: (before taking the wallpaper off)
After: (We still need to stain the banister)

The guest room is way too messy to show the whole thing.
A little village anecdote: On Saturday while we were out washing the car, I went to turn it around in the farm yard down the street so we could wash the other side, and a little old man waved me down.  He asked me if I live in the yellow house.  And I said yes.  And he said that he was born there 76 years ago.  He asked if we still have the little room out the back and I told him he really must come over and see for himself.  I'm hoping he stops by soon because I'm completely intrigued and can't wait to ask him lots and lots of questions.


It was a dusty horrible job involving a lot of sanding and hole filling and re-sanding.  Painting and stripping.  Stripping and painting.  Our vacuum cleaner broke because it just couldn't take it anymore.  So Sam swept the carpet when it became too much to bear.  After four weeks, we are officially done, but before we reveal the after pictures, we want to share some of the durings...

The stress caused Sam to go grey prematurely.  
Here you can see some holes we filled in the hall downstairs:

Remember that big gaping hole with horse hair sticking out?  Look at it once Sam attacked it with plaster repair!  See that beam in the bottom of the picture?  Scroll down a bit to see how it looks now...

More holes filled:

The guest room without  5 layers of wall paper or foam or foil, but before being painted. 

We sanded down this beam that was previously hidden beneath the wallpaper underneath the banister.  It's very very nice.  We also decided it was silly to paint over the nice wood beneath the beam so we stripped it and sanded it to add a little extra somethin somethin to the stair case.
Here is Sam melting the paint away.  We had to cover the smoke detectors so they would stop shrieking.  An interesting discovery we made during this time was that whoever installed the smoke detectors did so in a way that we cannot get the cover off to remove the batteries--they're too close to the wall.  Which left us scratching our heads and wondering how we will ever replace the batteries...  But anywho.
Nice eh?  
Here you can see the almost finished product.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

So it begins...

When wallpaper gets wet you kind of have to take it off.  The stairway, spare room and hallway between our living room, kitchen, bathroom, stairway and conservatory have been wallpapered this really horrible wood chip wallpaper.  It's gotten wet in a lot of places, and moldy in others, and was peeling and hanging of the walls in some areas, so on Wednesday night I finally decided it was time to get that crap off.  
Here's Sam in the stairway looking at what we have started with excitement.  Do you see that bag next to him on the floor?  It's never left his side, he's very concerned about keeping things clean and stops to sweep and vacuum every 30 minutes evening.  Which I of course appreciate:)
This is a close up of what I mean by wood chip.  It's basically two layers of paper with saw dust between it.  You can see at the top of the picture where the top layer hasn't been peeled off yet--that's what it looked like everywhere.  It's horrible stuff.
Under the banister here we were surprised to find a board screwed into the wall, and wondered if it was possible that it was where someone had chosen to hide a large pot of gold.
But no, it was actually where they chose to hide this big gaping hole.  

If you look closely at the dark spot in the middle of this picture you will see horse hair from the 1800's which they used to use as a binding agent in plaster.  

Moving along into our little hallway, the wallpaper has already been removed to reveal a nice mint colored paint.  Mmm, mint chocolate chip ice cream...

Where are you now Chad?  Get your ass over here and explain yourself.

And now for the spare room, which held the most surprises.  I peeled back a little wallpaper and what did I find?  
More wallpaper!
It's cute:)  Kinda makes you dizzy though...
But wait, there's more!  There are actually 4 layers of wallpaper, 1 layer of styrofoam (??!!??!?!) and a layer of tin foil just to make things interesting.

Tin foil?  Really?  I'm sure there is a good, rational, totally understandable, bad reason for this and I intend to find out what it is.  

Now what do we do? .....