Wednesday, June 18, 2014

slow & steady - house & yard progress

We've been in our house for 2 years! We've made a lot of changes, but man, do I have a lot more that I want to do. Now that I'm not sick anymore I'm hoping to get a few more things knocked off the list, but we'll see. Right now just getting laundry done is a full-time job. But I thought that I'd just throw up a few pictures of some of the recent, practical, imperfect updates.

 When we moved in two years ago - there was nothing planted in the beds around the house - and there was a giant misshapen pine tree that was in a weird place in front of the garage. We've made so much progress on the yard that I wanted to document it. Sometimes I get so focused on all the things that I still want to do that I forget how far we've come. 

 This spring the pansies, violets, and violas came in with a vengeance and re-seeded like crazy. It was so nice to have little plants come in that are actually beautiful and not weeds! We changed the door, painted the garage, added window boxes and shutters. Still want to change those things a little bit, but for now it's definitely an improvement.

 All of the flowers are slowly coming in and growing bigger every year. A couple unseen successes in this picture are a Spirea bush that I thought was dead, but came back and is flowering for the first time this spring. Also hostas and Lily of the Valley that are growing thicker each year. 

 There's a snowball bush growing here that I also thought I had killed. But this year it's finally blooming and growing. Squee! funny how excited it makes me. I'm thinking of building a big arbor against the white siding to grow some climbing plants to fill in that blank space. We've planted mammoth sunflowers in the mean time - we'll see if we planted them early enough to get as huge as promised.

  Call me crazy - but I'm trying Hydrangeas. This spot is north facing and stays moist and pretty shady, so I'm crossing my fingers that they'll grow.

 This front corner bed is pretty sad. It doesn't get enough water and we've lost a couple little bushes. You can see them newly planted below from last fall. Frustrating, but I'm not beaten yet. I'm going to run the drip line out there and see if more water is the answer.

This is our now hard-working laundry room. We haven't had a system that has really worked for the 2 years we've lived here and we've been swimming in laundry, especially with me being sick. But a couple weeks ago I made this Clean Laundry bin shelf out of an old changing table.

 Doesn't look very glamorous does it - but man, it's a system that is working really well for us. The kids painted the labels and helped to laminate them and cut them out. 

 Our room has slowly been coming together. We haven't really done much to it in over a year, but pretty soon we're going to be adding a crib and changing table in here when this new little baby starts taking over our world. 

I know it seems a little crazy, but I still totally love the dark navy blue walls. It's so cozy and colorful at the same time. My favorite inexpensive diy's in this room are the industrial looking wall bookshelves and the cornices made out of a cardboard box covered with batting & fabric.

 In January right before I was leveled by the morning sickness I hurried and built this "treehouse" in Gwen's closet. I wanted to make something fun in her room that was also functional. It's not completely finished yet, but what I really love about it is that it's holding all the same amount of stuff as it was before, but now it's also a great place for the kids to play.

I thought that the shelves behind the ladder were particularly ingenious. If you look close you can see that I recycled the previous closet doors to build some of the structure.

 Gwen's well-lived in room. 

 Jonas' room is well-used too. But it's such a fun and functional little boy space. The ikea ball lights with the glow-in-the-dark stars are a couple of my favorite things in here.

I also really love the bins underneath the reading bench in the closet. They house Jonas' shoes, toys, and jackets. It's great that Jonas can clean all those things up by himself.

It seems that the list of house projects I want to do just gets longer and longer, but it's fun to see where we are now. It's great to have a place to settle and be a family!