Tuesday, December 22, 2009

All aglow...

We thought we'd share a few images of our first Christmas season in our new home

The ever so angelic Mockadore ( big laugh ) getting her Christmas Present
and we were lucky to bring along some old friends and great memories into our new home

Happy New Year to everyone - Let's make it a great one!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Blue Christmas

This will be a relatively quick post with a few pictures.

We decided to tackle the kitchen, partially at least. In the long run we would love to get new counter-tops, cabinets, floors and ceiling. This is a task and investment that will need to come later. For now though we decided to rid ourselves of the checkered /plaid wall paper in hopes to move the space into a more simple and clean looking space... less fussy.

So, below is an image sequence with a few descriptions now and then.

A beautiful shot of the "before" walls... The majority of open wall is near the " back" of the kitchen, towards the rear door and first for bath / laundry. Most of the other walls are occupied by cabinets.

When we began to take down the wallpaper we soon found that there were TWO layers of paper to remove, with the second layer being painted / sized over. This made the process VERY difficult and time consuming. Add to that all the odd nooks and slivers of wall that needed to be treated and you end up with late nights and sore backs.

We decided to go with a color in the blue range, which was also a hard choice. Trying to find just the right hue that went well with the warm wood color as well as the cabinets that we are keeping for the moment was hard task. In the end we believe we found one that fits with the style of the home as well as all the odd tones in the kitchen.

And in the end, the result was well worth all the hard work in our eyes...

We had very nice toile curtains that Wife made which have both the buff and blue colors in them. They really bring the space all together. Who knows - Obama has promised us a nice first time home-buyer pick me up in the new year which may go to complete the kitchen (or possibly towards another room in our home)

Monday, November 16, 2009

Where have all the flowers gone...


Yes, yes, yes... its been quite a while since a posting so here we go with another exciting adventure into home rehab / repair...

To bring everyone up to speed, we have had quite an eventful summer and fall; one which drew us away from the home on many a weekend. Now, as the leaves have fallen and the chill of New England fall / winter settles around us, we find ourselves in the home during the weekends more often.

Our eyes and ambitions focus on the interior and how we can slowly make our home more "our" home. One location that has been on our shortlist as well as a thorn on our side for quite some time now is the first floor bath / laundry. In case you have forgotten the beauty which is this small room, please take a moment to reflect on the images below.

Serenity was not precedent in this decorating scheme - and we sought to bring a tad of calm to the space, be it that it is so small and being asked to serve multiple tasks ( "public" bathroom / laundry )
I had a week free from work recently and decided to attack the space head-on! One major hurdle in working in the small space was the large washer and dryer, that remained in the space during the rehab. I'm a limber guy, but not THAT limber; so sufficient to say, certain joints and muscles are still expressing their discomfort. First task - rid the space of the oh-so-beautiful floral pattern.

There seemed to be a feeble attempt at a base board and chair rail that the previous owner threw on the walls. That too was out!

Discovery is a wonderful thing, and past, patched holes in walls, tight piping joints / runs and large gaps between floors and walls were par for the course. We briefly toyed with the idea of removing the drop ceiling ( which WILL happen in the future ) but we soon found that it may take a bit more time and money that we had originally allotted to this rehab.

After priming and patching, the room was ready to receive its new color - Mountain Haze~ a subdued light green ( that we felt could work with the dark green and white tile floor which was to remain )

And why, you ask, would we chose to keep that lovely GUT-WRENCHING-OFF-GREEN lower wall color? Because we LOVE IT! .. no... because we decided to cover the lower wall with a proper white wainscot, baseboard and chair rail - once again, trying to unify the room, and brighten up the lower, darker floor area.

Working in the tight space / with no-true 90 degree corners, around pipes and laundry machines, trying to cut the board and trim angles correctly was quite a task, but in the end the result is quite nice.

We also replaced the cabinet hardware ( along with putting the doors on right side up - if you are interested, look back at the old pictures and notice that they were originally installed upside down... don't ask... ) We also said goodbye to the shell-shaped toilet seat. You will be truly missed.

To freshen up the space, all the trim along with the new woodwork received a fresh coat of pure white paint ( Wife is always right! ) Future minor updates will include a new wash mirror, probably a tall oval one, old laundry prints in frames, and a some sort of curtain divider between the laundry equipment and the washroom space ( for parties and such ) I will post additional images when those amendments arrive.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Where are the Woods?

It's Wifey. I've hijacked the blog. I know we've been missing for quite while, but we're doing fine. As it always seems to happen as the weather warms we are finding our lives in fast forward.

The month of May passed quickly with lots of yard work to bring it up to the standards of a picky, control-freak and a detail-oriented, designer of fine landscape architecture. We're not there yet.... but we're working on it. We had our first house party on May 16th and it was a huge success. We never actually counted the number of guests but various parts of lives were well represented in the attendants. As we had suspected the house and it's layout are great for entertaining.

We also attending a wedding of our good friend "Pemberton" in Newport on Memorial Day weekend. It was a beautiful day in a lovely setting with an absolutely stunning bride and her groom.

We're famous ......

Had we have known what the weather in June would bring, we probably would'nt have tried so hard to keep up with the lawn. The greater Boston area (the Northeast in general) had 22 days of rain in June. It was enough rain that the dog smelled moldy, plants were drowning, the grass was mown wet and we finally gave in and just started doing things in the rain for fear one more day inside would cause cabin fever (red rum, red rum, Tobey red rum).

The highlight of June was dog training. In addition to the Woods missing from the blogging world you might have also noticed that the "Mockador" has also disappeared. Our little rescue dog turned out to be a wild monster without any manners. She's incredibly fortunate that she was adopted by a man with the patience of Job and a woman who loves dogs. There were definitely days that I threatened to drive her back to Indiana where she came from. As frustration mounted we enlisted the help of Laurie of Professional Pet Services in Pembroke, MA.

She and her sister Michelle were not our last resort for the Mockador but they were very close to it. They have a "Dog whisperer" mentality to dog training that allows one on one sessions broken into 4 classes to raise a calm, submissive dog. Today I'm happy to say that while Bella is not yet perfect, I'm no longer thinking of a road trip to the Hoosier state.

"I love my gate!" (thanks Auntie)

"Is there a treat in this for me?"

Father's Day weekend found the sisters taking our Dad the Bear for a "Christmas" fishing trip on the Sandy B of Gloucester MA. It was one of the rare days in June that the sun shone and we were actually able to head out into the ocean. Although we didn't catch any fish we made memories to enjoy for years to come.

The fog's just lifting. Throw off your bow line, throw off your stern.
You head out to South channel, past Rocky Neck, Ten pound island.
Past Niles Pond where I skated as a kid.
Blow your airhorn and throw a wave to the lighthouse keeper's kid on Thatcher Island.
Then the birds show up, black backs, herring gulls, big dump ducks and green legged coots. The sun hit ya , head North, open up to 12, steamin' now. The guys are busy, you're in charge. Ya know what? You're a goddam swordboat captain!Is there any thing better in the world?
Sebastian Junger, A Perfect Storm

We took our traditional trip to the lake for July 4th weekend. Bella went on her first road trip to meet Sister, TC, EE, TE and the King at my parents cottage. It was a busy weekend filled with a "Flamingo" sighting, a Clarkson reunion, blanket sunbathing, a Mama Ruthie feast to feed the masses and the 4th of July Schamel party. Although the weather was not ideal, "the friendliest boat on the lake" did it's part to make the most of it.

I can't seem to find any other pictures from the weekend- I know it happened, maybe EE can help me out with a link to her photos here.

One of the highlights of the party was when my sister decided to break dance. Yep- that's right she was Jenny B from the block.

Do we know how to have fun or what?

That brings us up to now... the entire reason I've hijacked husbands blog- MY TOMATOES!!! Thanks to my Mom's monster garden growing up I've always enjoyed having my own plants in the summer. With the addition of the house I've stepped up my usual plantings with Earthbox planters. We'd like to thank "Fred and Wilma" for the very kind gift of 2 EB planters. We have a total of 2 tomato plants, a zucchini and a cucumber set up on the sunny, South side of the house. The staking of the gigantic tomatoes has been an ongoing task as they continue to grow. They're currently taller than my shoulder and covered with tons of flowers and lil' green 'maters. I'm so excited I could burst! I am trying not to love them to death as I wait for them to rippen. At this point it looks like our crop will be big enough to supply the neighborhood and possibly a farmer's market! The zucchini so far is a disappointment- the plant is gorgeous but the zukes seem to be ornamental in size. I've just read up on growing them so I'm going to attempt to employ some patience and wait. Right. The cukes look like they'll be ready in 2-3 weeks with healthy vines.

In addition to the veggies I have the usual flower boxes freshly updated with a nice mid-summer selection. I had great pansies (that came from the supermarket-gasp!) that got too leggy in the rain.

I was inspired by the inherited pot of chives from the previous owners and have a little perennial herb garden that hopefully will be in the ground next Spring. That's a list for another day :)

That's all for now. I hope this finds all of our friends and followers enjoying their summer. Husband is in Cairo for work this week. I'm hoping that he'll take some pics and update you when he returns. As for me, I might take a swipe at the "Laura Ashley violets" wallpaper in the downstairs bath. Or.... I might just relax. - Wifey

Our 90 year old neighbor sun worshipping (I've seen her in a bikini- no joke)

green goblin