Tuesday, December 4, 2018

It's Beginning to look alot like Christmas around here!

 The last couple of week we have been slowly getting out the decorations. The winter pillow covers have been put on, the snowflakes hung up, Frosty brought up.....
Last Saturday I bought the red ribbon. I have really been loving the bright red this year! I want it cheery! (We have had our usually dreary month of November and I am ready for some brightness!)

 The stocking has been on the door since the last week of October. I saw the Sunny Day Supply sew-along and fell in love with the quilted diamond pattern! It was a very fun make! And the perfect project to get ready for the season!

Mandy thought we should also put the ribbon around the window. And I agree! I love all the cheeriness! And I can't wait to see the tree framed in the ribbon framed window!

How is your decorating coming? All done? Haven't started?

Friday, November 30, 2018

Progress Report Week 22: Still Floors!


Can you believe it has been 5 months!?! Boy, time sure flies..... And I thought I would be finished up by now. It isn't quite as fun working evenings at the Brick House when it is cold and dark as when it was warm and sunny. But progress is still being made! Just a little slower....
Mandy and I made lists for each room so we could keep track of what still needed to be done. Not too many left to check off!
Don't you love how sunny the living room is? Love all those big windows. It is always bright, even on a cloudy day.

We have been working on trim too. The corner trim (or back bend) on the window looks like it has always been there, doesn't it? Half of it has! We had to replace the top half as is was cut out to fit the cabinets at some point in history. 

The door to the deck also got corner trim added to it. There wasn't ever any there. Helps it to blend in more now. Luckily a local lumber yard had the trim in stock.

The bathroom is also getting new trim! There was tiny trim around the door, but no baseboard. Still working on the baseboard. There is a little more fitting involved with baseboard the door trim. I can't wait to paint it!

 I got a little tired of scrubbing floors and decided it was time to start shellacking them! This one is the front bedroom. So excited with how they are turning out!

I put the first coat on the back bedroom last night. You can hardly see the strip where there was glue stuck on. This is just the first coat. I will put on another one to two coats of shellac.

 Almost there with the middle bedroom! You can see I have the back third done and just of the front area around the doorway to do. It should be the easy part!


Friday, November 16, 2018

Progress Report Week 20: Shellac and Floors

This week I have spent a lot of time on y hands and knees scrubbing floors! But all that work is beginning to pay off, look how good the floors look! This is the back bedroom and it had a six inch wide swath of some sort of carpet glue stuck to the floor. A little elbow grease and denatured alcohol and wa-la!

The front bedroom has already been scrubbed and is waiting for a new coat (or two!) of shellac.

I ordered 5 lbs. of shellac "buttons" from shellac.net. Hopefully it will be enough! The buttons are kind of fun to handle. I weighed them out into 1/2 lb. baggies to make is easier to mix up a batch. You can mix the shellac and denatured alcohol in varying strengths, but a 1/2 lb. shellac to 1 quart alcohol is a standard starting point. The shellac will have to soak for 24-36 hours until completely dissolved. I am not sure if we will be ready to apply it this weekend, but I thought I would get a head start just in case!

 I just started washing down the middle bedroom and as you can see, it is in pretty rough shape!

One corner done! You can see the difference though; on the right- freshly scrubbed, left-unwashed. I use a scot-brite sponge with the green scrubby back and a small scraper for the thicker paint splatters (and the carpet glue!). 

 Other exciting progress, is the kitchen cabinet hardware! Mandy and I decided to give it a go last night. Love how nice it makes the cabinets look! (If you ever decide to add cabinet hardware, a template makes the hole drilling process go super fast! We used a piece of cardboard with the hole spacing marked on it, then we would line it up with the edge of the cupboard and drill.)

We also got the kitchen sink drain plumbed in! And doesn't the kitchen look immensely better with the white fridge? 

Friday, November 9, 2018

Progress Report Week 19: Floors and Snow

 We got our first snow this morning. Everything is covered in a fresh sparkly layer. I love how cozy houses look in the snow! Mandy and I stopped at the Brick House for a few photos on our way back from the hardware store (gathering a few more plumbing supplies).

 Aren't the trees gorgeous!

 This week has been a bit slower, still getting our energy back from all the festivies with the sister and nephews here. Plus the time change doesn't help, that always throws me off. I did get a good start by finishing off the painting on the last three windows Monday and on Tuesday got the front of the closet doors painted.

I have also been working on the floors. Instead of sanding and re-finishing them, I decided to rejuvenate them. First I am washing the floors down with denatured alcohol, then I will apply a couple of fresh coats of shellac. So far they are looking really good! This is the front bedroom freshly washed down with denatured alcohol.

The Brick House has hydronic heat (did I mention that before?). I love all the old radiators! This is a new type of heating for me, so I have been getting a crash course in boiler and radiator care. Did you know if a radiator is hot on the bottom, but cold on top it has air in it and needs to be bled? I now need to figure out how to fix one that is hot on top, but cold on bottom. From what I am finding out it might be sludge build up.

 Looking down into the back yard from the back bedroom. 


I love these shiny hooks all in a row! They were actually on the other wall in the entry, but that looked like an accident waiting to happen as the glass door opened against, so I moved them over here. The perfect place to hang coats!

Monday, November 5, 2018

Happy Annivarsary Little House!

Yesterday was a quintessential November day in southeast Wisconsin. Rainy, windy, gloomy. Leaves and rain whirling and swooshing. I enjoyed it! I don't think Mandy was quite as enthusiastic as she is suffering from a head cold right now. Kerri and I had fun though; feeling the wind in our faces, admiring the brilliant leaves against the dreary background (at lest I was! Kerri was just enjoying the plethora of good smells.)

 Last week was a bit chaotic as our sister and two nephews descended on us. It was late night spent chatting and busy days playing with kids. I did manage to seek in a couple of mornings painting windows at the Brick House, but other then that progress was at a standstill. But kids grow so fast, I couldn't miss an opportunity to snuggle the newest two month old nephew or read stories with the four year old. So fun!

 I can't believe we are already on to November! 
The end of October is the house anniversary of my cottage. I usually do a Have-Done-List post, but this year with working on Brick House and starting to run out of projects on the cottage I didn't really do anything. It feels a little weird to say that.....

 It always amazes me how far this little cottage has come! It has taught me so much! Not just how to do practical things, but how to get the job done, time management, make quicker decisions and that I can do anything I put my mind to!
I love remembering all the stages and progress. Want to remember with me?

All posts about the little house. (You can also go room by room using the tags on the right.)

Previous years Have-Done-Lists 

Happy Anniversary Little House!

And Happy November friends!

Saturday, October 27, 2018

New Bathroom Lights

In shopping around for the Brick House, I came across the perfect bathroom scones for my cottage! Five years ago when we moved into the cottage I couldn't find anything I liked that fit my budget. I really wanted something vintage, but they were all to expensive. Plus I wasn't totally sure what I really wanted in here.

 So when I spotted these scones on Amazon and saw the ribbed glass shades, I knew it was time to update the bathroom a bit! (This was actually the second try. The first one had little halogen bulbs which we didn't like the look of.)


 It was the shades that caught my eye. Don't they look rather vintage? I decided to try the lights pointing down instead of up. This way the light shines down where it is needed. 
It is amazing how many more antique/vintage styles are available versus five years ago!


This little hoya must love humidity! He is sure happy here. We love spotting new leaflets as they sprout!

Not much has really changed. It is still a cozy little white bathroom!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Progress Report Week 16 & 17: Grass, Countertops and Paint

I hadn't realized I took no pictures last week. It was a rather aggravating week and I think I was just trying to survive so we could move on to a new week!
Anyway, the progress that didn't happen last week and the projects that didn't get finished got done this week! So I am happy.
One of the most aggravating projects was removing the giant burning bush in the front flower bed. I wished I could of saved it, but there wasn't anyway I could dig it up without harming it's roots. I chipped and chipped away at it. (The brother's truck was done or I would have had him come over and just pull it out.) Finally on Monday Mandy and I got it out! So now it is seeded with grass and will be part of the lawn. It looks a little empty to me, but so much easier to back out of the driveway!

 Mandy has been working really hard painting walls and ceilings. She is the master roller and I cut in and paint the trim. It really goes fast once we start, but a whole house takes a bit of time! I just have touch ups to do around the windows, the radiator in the kitchen and a few stubborn stains. It is always amazing what fresh paint does for a house! So clean and bright now!


 In case anyone is interested and for my future reference, all the walls are painted Valspar Cozy White #3008-10C. It is a really lovely color. Just a hint of yellow to warm it and make is look sun kissed.

This not-so-good picture is the only one I could find of the new counter tops! Such a huge difference! The old counter tops were aging the whole kitchen. It looks really good now as we have re-installed the sink! 
We are getting down there on the list! Hopefully, just a few more weeks and the Brick House will be done! Thankfully, I don't have renters anxiously breathing down my neck yet......