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My Moving In To Do List

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It looks like we will moving into what I believe will be our home we will happily (weekend for now) house, so I am making my list of must do or must find items. Feel free to join in if you have suggestions.

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We aren’t even going to start on the outside this summer. It has to work inside first.
I don’t have any interior  photos of our soon to be home yet.  I am going to get some soon.  The house is a traditional ranch home built in the 1980’s.  The two car garage at the end of the house has been taken in and makes for a long continuous room.  The fireplace is on a side wall in what would have been the middle of the original family room space.

We included a lot of our lake house furniture in the sale of the house so I have some work to do.

Master Bedroom: We have the essentials. We have a bed, night stands, dresser and chest. We need a headboard and I wouldn’t cry if I got the dresser and chest refinished before moving in. I plan on staining the tops and drawer fronts darker and paint the body of the pieces creamy white with glaze. We have our sewing machine base side tables but my sweet door headboard is not coming with us. I am not going to make major changes to the master because an addition to the master is on our short list, but it is not an immediate project . Any ideas for the headboard?

7-IMG_9832 my side table side table chest of drawers

Family Room: We have a couch, two recliners (don’t judge me, I have to make the husband happy and a recliner is high on the list along with a ceiling fan), the funky dresser that is going to serve as our media center and a television. That is all we have, really. We need everything else. No tables, no shelving, I am not even sure what we need in this space. We will be re configuring the galley kitchen that runs parallel to the family room as one of our first projects so right now it is hard for me to even imagine what the space is going to look like. We are just going to have to see what we can find or build to make this room comfortable until we get the remodel done.

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Dining Space: We sold everything in our current dining room. Hutch and buffet, chairs, table are all gone. I have a table hanging out in the Garagemahal that has these super chunky legs. I was given these amazing chairs and have the parts for a bench so that part is done. I need to figure out a rustic “China” cabinet.  Do you have any suggestions?  Please send photos!

We have two bedrooms that have absolutely nothing to go in them. I am thinking seriously about a Murphy type bed for one room and turning that room into an office/ study/ reading space. I want a set of French doors in that room for light. We will be taking out a window and adding the doors as we can afford it. If we are going to live there in the winter months I will need a well lit room to escape to. A bed that only comes out for company will be perfect. I have no idea about the third bedroom.

I like the one above minus the bench that seems very complicated. Relax Shack

This one seems easy and there is even a video.

The master, den, and dining will be about all we get done because there is one project I did not mention is that every, and I do mean every single room has cream colored carpet. Bathrooms, kitchen, family room carpet must go even if we move in with concrete floors it will be better than dealing with carpet. We hope to get tile down in the bathrooms before we move in.

Guess who will be busy for the foreseeable future? Feel free to help out on our upcoming projects. We welcome free labor.😄

Thank you for taking the time to read the blog and connecting with me.

Blessings,

Karen

Selling Star Hill

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Well, we are taking the plunge.  Star Hill, our near the lake cabin in Coldspring, Texas is going on the market. We planned to meet with a Realtor Sunday to discuss selling our near the lake house, Star Hill. She actually could not come because she broke her leg, but we will be putting the house on the market very soon. I decided to do all the research I could in her absence to make sure we are ready to sell this place and buy the property we are dreaming about near our lake house.

Having someone you don’t know walk through a place you poured blood, sweat, tears and time into when selling your home is hard. Being judged on your effort is hard. Loving the place and wanting whoever buys the house to love it, too is our hope.

After doing the research on getting a home sold quickly and trusting my gut I have composed a to do list.

Exterior:

Get concrete work completed on porch.

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Paint porch rails. ( The dog is not for sale.  Every time I get out the camera she manages to jump into the shot. )

Clean out flower bed, trim bushes, get leaves up.

Fix deck boards and popped nails then paint deck with sprayer.

Star Hill in January

Garagemahal:

Clear porch of items except patio set.

Move cedar from my cedar windfall to boat storage.

Finish outstanding projects. I have three that need to get knocked out on the first dry-warmish day.

Clean, clean, clean.

inside the garagemahal

Interior:

Continue to declutter. It will probably mean moving some furniture to storage. The cedar cabinet provides great storage but it makes the guest room feel small. The Western Dresser can go to storage, one of the night stands in the front bedroom. The shelving unit in the back closet along with the skis can go.

We have a large list but can get it knocked out if motivated-and we are motivated.

We plan to list the home with a realtor the first of March but we honestly hope it sells sooner by owner.

I would love your input on the list and suggestions from those of you who have sold second homes.

Here are some shots of the house this weekend.

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Master Bedroom

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Exterior

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Front Room

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Blessings,

Karen

Wishing, Hoping, Praying and Dreaming

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This year I become eligible for retirement. Wow! How in the world did that happen? Time has flown by. I will not be retiring this year, but the realization that I could retire is causing my husband and me to give some serious thought to our future. We are both healthy, active, and still full of dreams and plans. There are places we want to visit, things we want to learn, and goals we want to accomplish.

Our biggest decision for the past few years is where to live. We decided two years ago to move to a new school district and community. We know for sure that was a great decision, but at the same time we don’t plan on living in that community after retirement.

My husband and I met in college, and we weren’t from the same part of Texas. Neither of us feels a strong pull to our home towns. We both have friends where we grew up, I have family still in the city I grew up in, but it feels like I am visiting when we go back.

A lot of prayer and self reflection on our parts has helped us to know that our adopted weekend community is home for us.

I am positive that our sweet “near the lake” house, Star Hill, is not our forever home. A week or two is about as long as I can be confined here in the winter. I need a studio and workshop. My creative side cries out for a space to have projects out, to experiment, to think. I also would like to sell more furniture in my retirement. Hubby wants a tractor, a garden, woods to walk in, a pond and outdoor projects.

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A Busy Weekend at Star HillStar Hill in Spring

Star Hill

Cutting Down Trees at Star Hill

The Garagemahal

We believe we may have found just the place. 15 acres, with a workshop, a creek, a barn, wooded trails, very near our friends, a garden plot, a greenhouse, a small pond, and several other outbuildings that I would really enjoy doing some neat things with. I am not crazy about the house, but it is solid. well cared for   and has a ton of potential. It will take work and money but it can become the house I see in my mind’s eye.

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The barn and the pond.

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The side yard.  The garden plot is in the back of this cleared plot of land.  Water is run to the garden area.

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My favorite area.  The shop is the small building and the outbuildings here will make a perfect paint and furniture area.  both have wood burning stoves in them.

1-IMG_9664 1-IMG_9663 the househouse

The house.  The greenhouse is visible behind the house.

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The outbuildings.  There are some very interesting buildings that I could really have fun with.

The property will come on the market this spring. In order to purchase this property we will have to sell Star Hill. That means we will have to focus on getting all of those “one day” projects done. We will be making sure that this place we love is ready for her close up. We are already praying that a family will buy the place who can love this place as much as we do and will create new memories in this home.

Look for lots of projects that are focused on the house and the property in the next few months. We have things to learn like concrete work and more of Hubby’s favorite: plumbing. (Ha!)

We plan on keeping our home in the burbs for several more years until we both retire so even this new spot will be our weekend home for a while.

I have a few projects in the Garagemahal I have already either sold or promised to someone. Other than that we will be keeping furniture projects to a minimum as we focus on clearing out, fixing up, and moving forward.

We ask you to pray with us that if this property is meant to be ours, everything will work out. If not, that we will have peace and direction in our journey.

Thank you all for continuing with us on another chapter of our journey.

I hope you have a wonderful new year. I would love to hear from you.

Blessings,

Karen

Keeping an Eye on Resale Home Value While Making a House Fun

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One of the blogs I read is Jennifer Allwood at The Magic Brush.  I love this lady.  She is fun-loving, runs her own business and manages to stay involved with her family activities all while offering advice to others about following their dreams and having a successful business.  Oh and she loves glitter.   She owns a faux painting business in Kansas City.  Right now she is struggling with selling her beautiful home.  It is a very beautiful house that reflects her unique style.  Unfortunately her home is such a reflection of what she loves and her style that potential buyers have had a hard time seeing themselves in her home.  She has now launched what she calls Operation Vanilla on her home and is making the home more neutral.  She has removed the bright colors in bedrooms, the faux painted ceilings, Bible verses in the tray ceiling… The list is long.

Source: The Magic Brush

The photo above is Jennifer’s dining room.  I love her table. I mean I have even been looking for an old sign to make my own because I think it is so cool. Her room is beautiful. It looks like a magazine page, but I think I would personally be a little overwhelmed with the finishes and would have a hard time envisioning my furniture in the space. I don’t think my furniture would measure up in such a fancy home.

Each of you reading this has your own personal preference when it comes to your home’s style. You may like sleek and modern, beachy, traditional, cottage, shabby, rustic or eclectic. Our differences are what makes each home unique and are reflections of our lives. There really are ways to insert your own unique style along with fun touches in your home without affecting the resale value of your home. We have sold four homes over the years that had my own quirky style and all of them sold almost immediately even in tough markets and less than the most desire able areas so I feel confident providing a little insight in this area.

  • Keep the “permanent” items neutral. I would love a vintage stove in my kitchen. I mean one of those 1940’s stoves that has been refurbished and looks super cool. I haven’t put a vintage stove into my kitchen even in our last remodel because I knew we were going to sell our house and even though I would love having that stove, other folk might not love it and it could have kept our house from selling.

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In my opinion items like doors, appliances, flooring, and light fixtures need to be mainstream and have a nod to what is popular yet classic when the house is for sale. ( Granite is a must in our area right now.)
No checkerboard flooring, mason jar pendant lights, or unique features like a bright colored sink.  If you have them and you love them, take them down, pack them up before you put the house on the market and move them to your new home.
If and when (oh, there will be a when) we sell our suburban home, our barn door will come down. I will also take down my big S before showing the house because believe it or not, it could seem too personal.
 

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.view of the barn door

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I do not, have not and will not make the entire house beige, blah, and well…boring, in order to sell a house. I will tell you that my experience has been that those totally neutral houses do not sell as fast as ours have. One of the things that has helped our houses to sell is that they are memorable but not something so personal that a homeowner is thinking about changing the second they move in. I also think that we have made our houses feel warm and loved.
A few pieces of painted furniture like our mudroom bench, my farmhouse table, and the teal media dresser will be in the house. The walls, curtains, and flooring are neutral, so that the buyer can see themselves in the house but the colorful pieces are in the rooms to help the buyer, who is probably looking at multiple homes, remember the house.

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  • The artwork needs to be unique, but not specific. Over our bed is a simple one color piece that says Truly, Madly, Deeply.

DIY Monochromatic 3 Dimensional Art

It is one of a kind, but is also something that doesn’t scream at you when you walk in.

  • Put your money into the kitchen and bathrooms if you are going to update anything.

bathroom makeover

Paint the picture for your potential buyers with furnishings.  Depersonalizing does not mean empty and sterile. Help the visitors see what a room could be used for.

If you have moved into your forever home and the next address for you is the Pearly Gates, have at it.  Make your home as personalized as you want… someone else will have to deal with it when you are gone 🙂 If, on the other hand you know you will be moving, I hope you aren’t afraid to leave a little of your personality in the home.

Garage Organization DIY

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Having me give advice on organization is humorous at its best, but after spending the better part of a weekend organizing I feel like I can at least tell you what I did and brag on my Husband.  When we moved into the new suburban  house everything that we were not sure we wanted or had a place for, ended up in the garage.  Sound familiar?

It was GROSS.  I literally had to climb over stuff to move through the garage if I wanted to go from the front to the laundry room.

messy garage

Sooo If you are in the same boat as we were above, here is my advice:

  • Take it all out of the garage.  We move the cars and drug it all out on the driveway.  IT WAS EMBARRASSING FOR OUR NEIGHBORS TO SEE OUR MESS but it was the only way to sort it all out.  We needed to be able to see everything.
  • Sort before moving it back in.  Open every box, pull it all out and make sure you want to keep it. We had our trash can full before we got anything put back in the garage.  We had three sorting piles once we decided it was not trash; garage, tool shed, and inside the house.  We moved stuff to the right piles then took it to the correct location before we started on the garage stuff.
  • Go vertical.  See this awesome cabinet?

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My Hubby made it using a pattern from Home Handyman magazine.

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The whole one day thing did not work for us, mainly because tools are scattered between the two garages.

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It is great to store stuff on the wall.   It has a dry erase board on the front.  I love that it holds drills, caulk guns, safety gear, and levels all at eye level.

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See how much like the magazine it looks?

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We also installed a small pegboard for me to keep paint brushes, screwdrivers, and spray paint cans.

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The blower and extension cord now have their own hooks, the lawn chairs have another set of hooks, and the toolbox is a rolling vertical chest.  Probably the best use of vertical space is storing my wreaths.  See where I have them?  They are up out of the way not getting crushed.

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hanging wreath

  • Zone it.  We now have a paint zone, a car stuff zone, a tool zone, and a nasty chemical zone.  No photos of the finished product  because we need another cabinet.  It will be done soon.  Here is the start of our garage cabinets:

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  • Get rolling storage.  See this rough looking chest?  It was built by my husband out of scrap tongue and groove pine 30 years ago.  It weighs a ton but it holds our chop saw, our circular saw, and grinder along with other assorted electricity requiring power tools.  It rolls in and out of where we need it to be.

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Like I already said I am no expert on organization, but this worked for us.  In the future we plan on adding some more wall cabinets along the  side wall but some stuff still needs to come out.  The Coke machine is getting a makeover soon and will be moved to the Garagemahal and the table and chairs are sold as soon as I get them redone.  If it ever stops raining, sleeting, and in general being winter here in south east Texas.

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It is my plan to add a narrow work bench to the space.  I have been eyeing this one on Pinterest because it stores wood and has two levels.

Even though we were both tired and sore when we finished, we were also pretty proud of our efforts.

Blessings,

Karen

Creating a New Blog

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I have been toying with the idea of creating a new blog for a little while. I love Star Hill, Coldspring, and my weekend country life but right now most of our projects and life revolve around our new lives in our new community and new suburban home.

My Burb Home

I am going to be chronicling the rapid growth of this booming community , our progress as we turn our builder basic home into something that is more unique and us finding our way in a new place.

I hope you will consider following My Burb Home. I will continue to write about our wonderful weekend home and the projects up at the Garagemahal on The Weekend Country Girl, but the things going on in the new house will be on the new blog.    We have a few projects in the wings right now up in the country.

I started blogging because I wanted an outlet to share with my family and friends. Never, in a million years did I expect others, from a variety of states and countries to read my blog. I often wonder what in the world would someone who lives so far from the Texas Piney Woods ever want to read what I write. Thank you for choosing to be a part of our lives.

I look forward to continuing to share my small, small corner of the world as we explore the third quarter of our lives!

We have a lot planned and I am excited about the possibilities.  Here is a link to my first post:  My New Blog

Blessings,

Karen

The Great Garage Clean Out

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>The time has come… we must make sense out of our Burb home garage.  I have sworn off all projects this week- even though I have the paint ready to go on the dresser that is going to be our television stand.  ( Who am I kidding? It is already my television stand- and we even have the top piece assembled and painted but it melts into the wall right now.)
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Here is what our disaster zone garage looks like today.
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I should have included a warning that this scene is not appropriate for those with weak hearts or young children.

Goal for the week:

  • Install cabinets on the wall.  Purchased at Lowe’s.  Yay Lowe’s for providing us with $25 off coupon and having the cabinets on sale 20% off!  No sweat for me to spend $250.00 at a home improvement store.  We got two 24 inch cabinets for the stuff that cannot stay out.  The cabinets match the ones in the bathrooms so if (hope, hope) I ever find a vintage buffet that I am in love with and want to turn it into a double sink vanity, (hope, hope) I will be able to move the cabinets to the garage for additional storage.  That is the plan.
  • Get all my paint stored on the metal shelves.
  • Put up the pegboard and fill it with all the tools I am used to having access to.  Right now it is hunt and peck.
  • Organize the power tools.
  • Put away any loose tools.
  • Put the fall storage boxes up.
  • Sell the table and chairs.  Yes.  I am selling furniture.  I do not need them.  It may be next week before the garage is clean enough to have someone come look at them but they will be sold.
  • Clear the trash!

The next part of the garage make over will include high shelving for tubs.  Not this week.

Sooo, no posts this week of pretty things.  No fun.  Just work.

If you don’t hear from me in a few days send in help!
 

 

 

 

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