Tuesday, August 26, 2014

#663 Amish auction yields dresser

In 1914, closets were not very big.

Our bedroom closet is proof of that.  In the past, we have not owned a dresser since our clothes could fit easily inside a modern bedroom closet.  But now, our tiny closet has us thinking that we should take the plunge and buy a dresser like normal people.

Friday's local paper has an ad for an Amish farm auction not far from where we live.  And guess what?  They're selling a 3-drawer oak dresser that may fit well in our bedroom.   It's been awhile since we've been to a farm auction (a couple of decades or so) and we've never been to an Amish farm auction, so we decide to spend our Saturday at the sale.
We admire the buggy as we walk by and ultimately decide we can do without it.
And we continue to the furniture section of the sale.  There we spy the dresser looking better than all its companion dressers in the sunshine. 
We like what we see so we decide to register and get a bidding card. The sale starts promptly at 9:00 but it is a couple of hours before the auctioneer makes his way to the furniture. That allows us to see a treadle sewing machine sell for nearly $500. A gas-powered wringer washing machine also sells high. Wow! These prices are  higher than we expect and we wonder how much interest there might be in an old oak dresser.

The answer is not much. Two other bidders are interested but Kelly outlasts them while I try to remain calm.  Auctions make me nervous!  We come home with the cutest oak dresser and a good feeling about buying a lovely piece of furniture that has been loved well for a long time. 

Yours in expanding our closet,

Sunday, August 24, 2014

#662 Hubbard Squash Comes to our Bungalow

Hubbard Squash is one of our favorite paint colors.

Many of our walls through the years have been painted Hubbard Squash.  It is part of the Sherwin Williams arts-and-crafts palette but this is the first time for us to use it in an arts-and-crafts home.  How exciting!

The bedroom on the first floor features (features?) a blue wall with wood trim on all 4 edges - to cover the wavy edging.  This blue wall includes two outlets at varying heights with the receptacles painted blue too.  So our goal is to remove all the blue and paint the four walls.
We remove the carpet, the two vertical 'trim' pieces, and the switch plate covers; we wash the walls with TSP; and finally it's time to pop open a can of paint. 
Two coats later and the blue is all gone.  We like the look of the Hubbard Squash together with the yet-to-be-refinished oak flooring.  It's a good first step in renovating the bedroom.       
Yours in welcoming Hubbard Squash into our bungalow,

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

#661 Universal Design Ideas @ My Library

We're in need of some universal design ideas.

As we are refurbishing our 1914 home, we want to think about how we will be able to “age in place” using universal design elements such as walk-in showers, level outdoor walkways, ample lighting, and kitchen appliances that eliminate the need to bend. Lucky for us, a few universal design books are just waiting for us on the shelves @ our local library. 
So we walk all the way (about 4 blocks) over to our public library on Mr. Jefferson's street.

The lovely folks at the Carnegie Corporation of New York granted $9,000 in March 1913 to construct the Aurora public library for us.
After giving thanks to Andrew Carnegie, we waltz right in, register for a library card, and walk out with just what we need. 
We're just starting to think about how best to design our home. So if you have some favorite universal design ideas to share, please leave it in the comments or contact us!

Yours in scoring big @ my library,

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

#660 Step 1: Remove the carpet

Our first big Show-Me Bungalow project is carpet removal.

We don't think the carpet is very old, since it's not at all worn.  But it is stained, so out it goes. Besides, we want to see what's underneath.
Living Room (before) - with carpet
 First a peak...

Out goes the carpet, the carpet pad, those deadly tack strips, and 
a gazillion staples. 
We're thrilled to discover 1.5" oak wood flooring underneath.  A little later during our project we'll be refinishing these floors to get them looking like they did in 1914.  
Living Room (after) - no carpet
We're pleased to donate our used carpet to my brother's manufacturing company where it will be used to protect stainless steel sheets.
Yours in cleaning out the old,

Friday, August 15, 2014

#659 Remembering the Great War

Due to the 100-year anniversary of the Great War, I've been thinking about life back then.

Today, we discovered this WWI monument in a small park about 5 miles west of our home. 
The 1910 census shows that the largest population of foreign-born residents in our small county came from Germany.  It's hard to imagine that 423 of Lawrence County's residents were born in Germany.  Can you imagine the debate among Lawrence County citizens about whether the US should remain neutral and not enter the war?  Yet this monument commemorates the 32 local men who left their Missouri homes, crossed an ocean, and gave their lives to the war effort.

Also today, I read The Care and Management of Lies.  (What can I say?  I'm retired!)  Jacquelyn Winspear, the author of the beloved Maisie Dobbs series, tells the story of Tom, an English farmer who leaves his farm in the capable hands of his young bride when England declares war on Germany in 1914.  In my imagination, Tom is not that different from those young Missouri men, likely farmers, who never stopped thinking about getting back home to the farm.   

Yours in remembering the Great War,

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

#658 Lots of Vegetative Matter

It's been 2 weeks to the day since the movers delivered our Virginia household to Missouri.

So what have we been up to, you ask?  Yard work!  After years of renters, the yard was severely overgrown.  Encouraged by the cool dry summer days and the generous offer by the city of Aurora to make a one-time collection of all 'vegetative matter' that we leave at the curb this week, we attacked the yard with a vengeance.   

Kelly used his favorite tree saw as we trimmed trees and I made a big pile of limbs and brush at the curb.      

There's a small building behind our home that had originally been built as a one-car garage.  We like it because the design matches the design of the home.  But it was tough to see that design from the street due to years of neglect.
1-car garage BEFORE
1-car garage AFTER
On the west edge of our lot, there is a stone wall - built about 2004 by the home's 4th owners.  This wall separates our property from the neighbor's property, so we want to keep that looking good.  
Stone wall - BEFORE

Stone wall - AFTER
Yours in feeling rewarded by the before/after photos,

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

#657 Roadside Education

We learned so much on our road trip through Virginia, West Virginia, Kentucky, and Missouri.

Just by reading the signs along the road - mostly in church yards - we now know:
Without the bread of life, you are toast.
It is better to wear out than to rust out.
God answers knee mail.
We're interested in biblically correct, not politically correct.
Son screen prevents son burn.
Gossip is the devil's radio.  Don't be his DJ.
The tassle's worth the hassle.
A clean conscience makes a soft pillow.
Sorry looks back.  Worry looks around.  Faith looks up.
Yours in learning a lot along the way,