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Homestead (Not Child-Related) Happenings

01/09/2014

We’re building a privacy fence in our backyard. It’ll be a modern wood fence very similar to our last house. I did an extensive tutorial on that fence three years ago, as well as the process of enclosing our courtyard at this house, so I will not be documenting our process this time. We managed to get all 23 posts set in the ground just before the great Flash Freeze of 2014. Now Jason’s touring schedule is rolling again so we’ll have to wait for some warmer days to line up with the days we’re both off work so we can start on the pickets.

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We’re getting chickens! Two years ago Nashville passed a new law allowing backyard hens to be raised for eggs. Jason was interested right away but it took me a while to get on board. Now that we have the fence started and Jason got this new book for Christmas, I’m all in. I’m so excited. We’ll be getting our chicks in the next month or two to start raising them inside until we have the coop done and it’s warm enough for them to move into their new house. We’re allowed to have up to 6. We’re planning to start out with 3 or 4. We eat a ton of eggs around here (18-24/week) so I’m excited to start getting them fresh from our own backyard.

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The foster kids’ room (which I’m tempted to call the little girl’s room…or is it the little girls’ room…) is getting a mini makeover. We’re repainting the walls. We got some new art and moved art in from a different room and I’ve moved some furniture around. Bee is gone for 25 days and with the possibility of baby Trust coming, well, I guess I’m nesting. We decided to paint Sherwin Williams Ellie Gray just like the first foster kids’ bedroom at our last house, which ended up being Ali’s nursery. We were very happy with that color and we’re not so happy with the neon green I chose for this house.

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Our master bedroom has been slowly getting designed. We realized one day that it’s sad how neglected it’s been design-wise. Last June we celebrated 10 years of marriage and decided that it’s time for a properly designed room. I’ll share more about it when it’s finished. We started out with a dresser and curtains. We added some art. New bedding. A new bed frame and lamps. Still to go: paint and wall/headboard treatment. Rugs. More art.

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Ali’s room got a mini-makeover too. She mastered climbing out of a pack-n-play while we were staying at my brother’s house for a few days and quickly transferred her skills to her crib at home. She’s now in a big girl bed again (side off her crib for now…eventually that KURA bed in the foster kids’ room will be hers). I’ll post more about that transition later. It’s going so much better this time around. She got a new lamp, owl poster and hot pink dog-butt hooks for hanging her dress-up clothes from IKEA.

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New Home Update

09/27/2012

We have had a lot of work done on our new house the past couple weeks that’s not very visually interesting. We’ve had duct work run for the heating and cooling system. We’ve had gas lines run for appliances and vents for those appliances. We’ve had all the electrical work in the house roughed in.

Also, the courtyard leading up the front door got cleared out and a concrete footer was poured for the steps.

Next up: concrete for the front porch and steps, the garage and the back patio. I think. And soon after that: insulation, doors and drywall. Woohoo! We’re half way there.


New Home Update

09/05/2012

Since my last update on our hew house, we’ve had our windows installed, the ground leveled around the house and our roof has been shingled. All of that excitement packed into one picture-ific post:

The house feels much more grounded, nestled into the property, now that the dirt has been leveled. We’ve got a lot of landscaping to do!

The window in the foreground will be over my desk, looking out into the backyard.

The front door (in the right of this pic) opens into the dining room and kitchen area. The windows next to the door were not yet installed in this picture. We get a ton of light while still having a lot of privacy from the street.

From the front door, we can see straight down the hallway and out the window in one of the kids’ rooms. I love how that worked out.

Also from the front door, I catch a glimpse of the living room with big window and tall concrete block fireplace.

We’re looking forward to cozying up in front of the fire this winter.

I really, really love how much indirect natural light we get in the house through the clerestory windows. Three cheers for thoughtful architects!

The exposed concrete block continues into the den/playroom/spare bedroom. Jason is probably swatting a mosquito in this picture. They’re really bad down by our house. Maybe because all the dirt was stirred up with the leveling?

We have some nice big windows in the master bedroom too.

I love that we get to look out at this beautiful crepe myrtle tree all summer and fall!

Lucy is very happy that we have some low windows and glass doors that she can bird watch through.

The front door on a different day, after the windows were installed. This is from the dining room looking out toward the courtyard entryway.

A couple of weekends ago, Jason and I did a bunch of yard work. We removed about 60 feet of chain link fence and posts, cut back/down some trees, weed and shrubs and hauled all the debris to either the dumpster or the curb for brush pick-up. It was hard work on humid days but it felt so good—the physical exercision and the fact that we were working on our new property. This photo is taken from the back corner of our lot, the highest point on the property.

In the above pictures, our roof is covered in tar paper but not shingles. I’m not sure if you can tell by looking at them. But, in the pictures below, we have shingles! Yay! We selected “weathered gray” and it’s just what we were hoping for. We didn’t want to go too dark to attract the sun and we didn’t want to go too light that it looked the same shade as concrete. We didn’t want to go too brown since we have gray concrete block but we also didn’t want to go too gray because we’ll have cedar wood siding. Needlesstosay, we’re pleased with our choice.


New Home Update

08/01/2012

The framing is just about done now, minus a few little additions here and there. The floors are all swept and the house is wrapped in plywood. The roof has been wrapped but not shingled yet. The soffits are almost all wrapped in HardieBacker. This stage is really exciting for me. I love being able to walk through each room and really get a sense of the size, even more now that the outside is wrapped and the floors are cleared. These are all Jason’s pictures:

On Monday morning we met with some window sub-contractors. We’re getting bids for vinyl windows and store-front commercial windows and we’ll be making a decision based on price, appearance and function – probably prioritized in that order. Very soon the plumber and electrician will start roughing in lines. We’ve got quotes for different styles/woods for our siding. Things are moving along rapidly now. Every time we go over there it feels a little bit more like our home, and not just our construction site.


Eames: The Architect and the Painter

03/14/2012

Source: theimpossiblecool.tumblr.com via Yada on Pinterest

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Jason and I just finished watching Eames: The Architect and the Painter on Netflix, and it was totally inspiring. What I love most about the husband and wife duo of Charles and Ray Eames  is that they never limited their creative interests and business endeavors to just one field. Charles was trained as an architect though he never graduated from college or got a license. Ray was trained as a painter but never made her living that way. Together they took on the challenge of creating an ergonomic chair made of bent plywood—completely innovative in their day.

Source: google.com via Veronica on Pinterest

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From there, they went on to produce tons of furniture designs out of their studio in California with a team of designers working for them. But the couple also dabbled in film production and toy making. Everything they did was as a team. I loved seeing the letters they sent back and forth while they were separated for work, each updating the other on progress at the studio, what shops to visit in Paris, where to buy shoes, where to get a great deal on perfume—complete with whimsical drawings and love notes. It reminds me a lot of the kind of texts, emails and phone calls Jason and I exchange throughout the day. What a cool couple (minus the whole infidelity thing…eh hem), pictured below in the home they designed together.

Source: Uploaded by user via Stephanie on Pinterest


“It’s Lonely in the Modern World”

02/11/2010

For all of you out there who think modern design is cold, impersonal, empty, lonely … here’s your confirmation.

Unhappy Hipsters. Very funny photo documentary blog. One of my recent favorites:

At the art opening, he’d been convinced the blank canvas symbolized endless possibilities. Back at home, it was just one more reminder of his own desperation.

(Photo: Raimund Koch; Dwell, April 2009)


Love Painting #2

08/04/2009

The second “love painting” is finally done and hanging above the new mcm credenza in our bedroom. (Did you see Love Painting #1?) Hubby and I quite pleased with it and we’re already talking about doing more paintings like this.

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