Porch sittin’ season

Ahhhhh, summer in Minnesota.  Is there anything better than hanging out on the front porch and knocking back a homebrew or two with your friends?

the front porch

Come on over and join me!  We’ll bask in the smell of musty, 30-year-old outdoor carpet…

old outdoor carpet

…enjoy the view over the claustrophobic fence…

the horrible fence

…and try to avoid getting splinters in our asses from the dilapidated furniture and peeling porch components.

peeling paint on the porch columns

Wait, where are you going?  Why are you running away??  I SAID WE HAVE BEER!!!

Well, I guess I don’t blame you.  You probably have your own porch, where you don’t have to worry about contracting tetanus.  Or the plague.  Aren’t you fancy?  All I can offer is the assurance (probably) that most of those paint chips ground into the carpet are probably not lead-based.

Probably.Continue Reading

And our next contestant is….

You’ve all been wondering it: now that the kitchen’s done, what am I going to do next?

I wanted to take a moment today to let you know:  you people sure know how to put the pressure on.  I mean, it’s only been, like, 7 weeks since I birthed a kitchen.  After 18 months of labor.  What on earth makes you think I’m going to do anything next?

Maybe I just want to relax for a bit.

Maybe the scars need a chance to heal.

Maybe — and perhaps most importantly — I need more time to figure out a project that’s even more mind-blowing than this

Kitchen before and after 3

or even this

Mason Jar Craft fail

Because now that I have you, I don’t want to disappoint you.  I’ve come to realize that I cannot live without your adoration.  And now, I am willing to do just about anything to keep you coming back for more.Continue Reading

Post-Project Stress Disorder

The kitchen is done!  Has been for a while now!  And apparently I just took a little time off to recover from my renovation hangover before starting another big house project!

So, hi!  How have you been?  It’s been a couple of weeks since we’ve chatted.  But don’t worry, that doesn’t mean I haven’t been working on anything.  Oh no.  Because I am incapable of doing nothing.  I must always be working, fixing, changing, IMPROVING!!  A ROLLING STONE GATHERS NO MOSS!!  CAN’T SLEEP CLOWN WILL EAT ME!!

cant sleep clownll eat me

“So,” you ask, “if you haven’t been working on the house, and you haven’t been sleeping, what have you been doing during your relaxing break from remodeling projects?”

Excellent question.  And the answer is all around us:  I rebuilt this website.Continue Reading

Descent into Craftiness

You guys, I’m sorry.  I apologize for the post you are about to read.  Let me just get this out of the way: I made hanging planters out of mason jars.  See ‘em back there?

kitchen remodel 9

I know.  I know what you’re thinking.  There are three possible reactions to this:

1)  You are a blogger and you are thinking, “Yay!  Another mason jar craft!  I will add this to one of my 17 Pinterest boards devoted to mason jar crafts!”

2)  You are a blogger and you are thinking, “Jesus H. Christ, ANOTHER FREAKING MASON JAR CRAFT??  How trite/unoriginal/clichéd.  What happened, Sarah?  You used to be cool.”

3)  You are not a blogger, and you are wondering what the hell I’m blathering about, but at this point you’ll probably keep reading because blathering is not unusual for me, and there’s a 50/50 chance that there’s a punchline in here somewhere.Continue Reading

How to fix a hole in masonry

Alternative title: How to Cover Shit Up and Pretend It’s Not There.  Because I don’t know anything about bricks and mortar.  But I do know how to cover shit up and pretend it’s not there.

kitchen remodel 15

You guys probably don’t remember this post, where I showed you this sign

vintage tin sign, censored

but then told you I couldn’t show it to you until the chimney was clean.  Well, the chimney got cleaned a while ago, but I still couldn’t show you, because the sign is actually way too small to cover the chimney-hole.  So I had to make it bigger.  By building a frame.Continue Reading

Window Painting 101. And 102.

So if you were looking real close, you might have noticed a little difference in the windows, between the last time you saw them (that would have been in this post, over 10 weeks ago) and the reveal last week.

Painted windows: before and after

They’re painted black!  And I love them.

kitchen remodel 4

And I learned a lesson while painting them.  A very important lesson.  But before I get to that, would you like to know my tried-and-true method for painting windows?  Because this ain’t my first rodeo.  Continue Reading

Stairway to Heaven

If by “heaven” you mean “finished kitchen,” then yes, I guess, technically, this could be the stairway to heaven.

refinished stairs

I guess I always imagined something a little…taller.  And more golden.  But this will do.Continue Reading

Hump Day: Part Deux

I think I got an idea.  An idea for a blog post.  A blog post about nothing.  You’ll say, “What’s it about?”  And I’ll say, “Nothing.”

I think I may have something here.

I hope you enjoyed that clip.  Because the stairs aren’t done.  So what else can I say?Continue Reading

Hump Day

Our house has a hump in the middle of the first floor.  A stair hump.

The central staircase.

One side of the hump leads into the kitchen.

the kitchen stairs

These four stairs are the last thing standing between me and a finished kitchen.  Aside from the dingy carpet, which got beaten into oblivion during the remodel and now clearly needs to be torn up (right?), the stairs also have a gap problem.

the dangers of pulling carpet off old floors.

Apparently, our mid-renovation decision to leave the chimney exposed has led to more work.  Who knew? Continue Reading