So as it happens in projects such as these, we started talking about how much more open the kitchen would feel if it were…ummm… you know, open. So one thing led to another and before we knew it, the was was down. Just like that.
Crow bars and sledge hammers seem to be these guys best friends.
Kind of exciting to see things just wished for one moment…
and coming true the next.
This place is awesome. This disappearing wall is awesome.
While visiting the house the other day with the family, the kids came in shrieking that I needed to “come out back NOW!!”
There, nestled in the tall grass was an adorable tiny owl. I’m no owl expert, but it looked to me like a sleepy little baby just waiting for it’s mama to swoop down and take him home. We stayed back so as not to scare him. But honestly, he didn’t seem to mind our “Oooooh-ing and ahhhh-ing,” and all the “isn’t he so sweet-ing?” that we just couldn’t help. He seemed to sleep right through most of it, except for the occasional one eye, drifting open for a second and then falling shut again.
He reminded me of Ron Weasley’s tiny owl, Pigwidgeon, from the Harry Potter series. In fact, I’m going to take him in my own back yard, as a good omen.
For one who wholeheartedly believes in fairies, unicorns, dragons, pixies and anything else whimsical and sparkling…it’s not too much of a stretch of the imagination to say…
Once the Bald Guy got the insulation off the ceiling the next big deal was this ancient wallpaper. Crazy stuff–I’m telling you. It was probably beautiful in it’s day, and not a particularly cheap kind either. But it made the room so dark and foreign looking to me.
I did a ton of research on exactly what solutions would take it off with the least amount of drama and I finally found a natural site that promised good results with just a few ingredients.
We planned a whole day around spraying on a vinegar and water mix and letting it soak. But first I had to take off all the fixtures. The light switch covers were actually very pretty…up close.
And these little pull chain heater vents were just so cute I wanted to leave them.
But we forged ahead and got all the hardware off the walls. Then April said, “See if you can loosen any of the paper from the bottoms before we spray.”
I grabbed a tiny corner of one panel and lifted it up gently. To my surprise, the whole strip just came off in one piece –from the floor to the ceiling!
I tried it with the next panel and sure enough–without spraying or soaking or ANYthing, the paper came off in perfect sheets–like it had never been used at all.
Seventeen minutes later we had a lovely, dry, snow white wall just waiting to be painted. It was hilarious!
So, we’ve moved on to the taping plastic everywhere and painting phase.
While the inside of the house is being made…ahem…more presentable, how would you like to see the back? Hmmmmm?
I have to admit, this was one of the big selling points of the house, for me. A large, sprawling backyard, with a pretty little (huge) walnut tree in the middle.
Apparently the place hasn’t had real people in it for years, so there are some bushes and tree limbs that are totally out of control. But just look at that cute, ancient, hand carved rooster windmill! He’s so sweet.
Someone has been taking care of the yard for the previous owners, but still it has this quiet, untouched feel to it.
In fact, I think the critters are so used to this place being human-free that they are startled by us being there at all.
The birds swoop down like they’re trying to scare us out of their secret garden. Just this morning a mom and daddy quail ran right under the fence with their 9 babies like they were being chased–which they were certainly not. I would have been happy to watch them all morning.
Then there is the most mysterious looking shed or workshop or something off to the side that we couldn’t even unlock before we bought the place. We just got to wonder about it.
Word is, that the family who built the house actually lived in this little place as a temporary house until the main one was finished. When we finally got the door open, it was dark and full of spider webs. I wasn’t too brave about it, but the Bald Guy will most likely search and destroy the creepy crawlies soon enough. Then we’ll see what’s in there.
There was no sign of a formal garden spot or fruit trees, but there are lovely flowers popping up around the edges here and there every day. It’s almost as if they are trying to surprise us…which of course, they do.
And can I please talk to you about ROCKS?! This fellow must have been a crazy rock collector because there are gigantic ones of every kind imaginable, all over the front and back. It’s nuts.
We aren’t even moved in yet but sometimes I just go out and sit in a chair in the back and breathe it all in.
How shall I describe the inside of my cute little house? Hmmmmm….
Perhaps it’s would be best to say that the owner lived to be 103 and his father built the house back in 1944. Maybe I already told you that. Well, either way, it’s important to remember because this sweet little place has all kinds of character and charm that are part of the era in which it was built. Some things we will happily keep and others…wellllll.
I passed by this house several times on the internet for two reasons. First, it was listed as having only one bedroom. And second because of the wood paneling…
house. Not so charming.
I’ll admit that I didn’t like all the dark in the online photos, but then when I walked through the house, it didn’t bother me so much. Hey, I’m a pretty easily satisfied sort of soul.
Then when my girls went through the place, the consensus was unanimous. “Mom. Seriously. You have to paint the walls.” At first I ignored them because there was a more pressing problem.
Asbestos on the ceilings. YIKES.
So, we did a bit of research and the Bald Guy was quite confident that he could take care of it. And sure enough, in a couple of days, he gave us the “all clear.” He’s a very thorough fellow.
Of course, I was ready to move straight in at that point, but April said, “At least think about painting.” So I did what any rational person on a tight budget would do.
I got on Pinterest. I don’t know if it was a mistake or Divine intervention but the painting over wood paneling makeovers were simply beautiful. There was no going back.