Monday, April 15, 2013

So Long Cupboards

When we first bought our house, the kitchen felt very tiny and rather cramped. It really is a small kitchen, but I didn't think that the dark wood cabinets helped. So, our first order of business was to paint the cabinets a creamy white.This definitely helped, but our view into the dining room was still blocked by the bulky upper cabinets to the right of the sink. Here is kitchen in it's original state...

And here it is after we painted...

This is the view from the other side.

Like I said, it felt much improved, but there was still the upper cupboards blocking our view. When we first moved in we had the idea to remove the upper cupboards, but we didn't want to lose the storage. However, after some time, I had the idea to take down the upper cupboards and put them in the dining area as a type of sideboard. This way we wouldn't lose storage but could really open up the room. I thought it would fit really well on the wall opposite the table with the built-in shelf. 

With that plan in mind, we went ahead one weekend and took those suckers down. They came down really easily. They were only held up by some screws, but they were super heavy. Here is how the room looked immediately after...

And here is the cupboards in there new location. Obviously needing some work, but we already loved the change!

It didn't take us too long to start patching up where the cupboards had been. Pat used drywall mud to smooth out the wall and the bulkhead. Here is the space in that stage...

You can also see that we added a top to the 'sideboard', but I'll tell you all about that in the next post. I will leave the kitchen here for now! It really took us a long time to finally paint the wall, but I am happy to say that it is done now. We're so happy with the room now. It feels so much more open and it is a lot easier to communicate between the rooms. 

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Spring Yard Tour 2013

Now that we own a home, this is really the first time that I know that we will be in a place long enough that I can take the time to work on our yard. All of our previous homes we have ended up either moving in/out at the beginning or end of summer. So, this is the year I am going to attempt to keep our yard looking somewhat pretty and functional! There are several flower beds in our yard and I know I am going to need to keep them as low maintenance as possible. I am also starting a small vegetable patch in our front yard in the sunniest spot I could find. Conveniently, the sunniest spot was a patch that was a good size for our vegetable garden, so last fall I pulled a bunch of things out and got it ready. Here is the tour of our yard...

Here is the to be veggie patch complete with cold frames and a little wattle fence I made with some prunings.
Some romaine lettuce in one of the cold frames.

The pond I have mostly drained. I was given some water irises from a friend, so I will be filling this in and planting them here. I'll also use some river rock to help fill it in.

The side of the front yard.

Side yard with the circle garden and a flower bed. There are a lot of tulips coming up here.

The circle garden. This is my favourite part of our yard right now.

The berry patch. This needs a lot of work.

The backyard complete with a massive tent. It currently houses our wood, but I really don't like the look of it. My sister has all sorts of ideas for it... she thinks it is wonderful. I need to prune these trees very badly.
Another flower bed. There are a lot of tulips and irises here currently.

The side of our carport with a crazy clematis. I'm not sure how to maintain it. Ideas? 

I forgot to get a picture of where the spuds and zucchini will be planted, but other than that, that is our yard! I'm really enjoying mucking about so far. Hopefully I still have fun with it this summer! I'd love some ideas for the yard if you have any and I'd also like to hear some suggestions for shade-loving, low maintenance plants for the yard.

Saturday, April 6, 2013

The Start of Spring

We have had a lovely beginning to our Spring here. It has been busy (but not too busy) and full of wonderful, spring-y things. Spring Break was at the end of March and we went up to Fort St. James to visit my sister and her little family for a week. It was our first time there and we had a wonderful time. We did so much during our visit- had a private tour of the Historic Park, visited a farm and a baby calf, did some nice walks, crafted, knitted, watched Seinfeld, played with the babies, ate delicious food, did a silly photo shoot and of course, just soaked up each other's company.

At the Historic Park on our tour.

My sister and I dressed up at the Historic Park. We are cheesy.
Visiting the first new calf of the season at a friend's farm.

When we got back home from our trip I did a lot of work in our yard and got some seeds started. I always come back from visiting my sister all inspired to get things happening in our yard. She always has such a pretty and functional garden. This year she had all her seeds started on her kitchen table and it got me all excited to get home and get things going for us! I am lucky to have the help of my Father-in-law, Neil, who is also an amazing gardener. He has really helped set me up for the year. While we were away he and my Mother-in-law, Dee, house/cat sat for us and he created a little garden center in our workshop for me.

Aren't I lucky!? I have since moved the lettuce and geraniums outside. The lettuce are in a cold frame (also brought by Neil) and the geraniums are out during the days and in at night to get used to the outdoors.

We've also been enjoying time just hanging outside. We had a long streak of gorgeous, sunny weather. Parker is so happy when he can explore the outdoors.

For Easter, our town put on a big Easter Egg Hunt for all of the kids, so we took Parker. It was his first egg hunt and he seemed to have fun. He met a little guy just a couple of months older and he and Parker shared eggs. They also thought it was a good idea to collect pebbles along with the eggs.

And that about wraps up the start of our spring. Like I said, it has been a wonderful season so far!
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