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General Maintenance

July has flown by with a lot of planning and really boring so-called projects. I'm just going to do a short list so you know I've not just been sitting on my laurels not writing blog posts. There just hasn't been anything really warranting it's own post and I keep thinking of projects to do and they get pushed to the way-side for general maintenance things like cleaning the kitchen and sorting through the next size of baby clothes to get them washed and ready for growing girls!

1. I trimmed the vines over and around our entry way. These vines were one of the first draws to this house. I mean, what says "charming cottage" better than some glorious late summer vine-age hanging over a lovely blue door? Nothing. But they are a BEAST in the maintenance department. About 2 months ago, I caught the vines attempting to break in our front door, so I trimmed those back a little. Then I realized that the vines were completely taking over the side of the vestibule and attempting to sneak in through the sunroom. But don't worry, I stopped them. For now.

what our reel mower
 looks like (photo from Lowe'
Scott loves it!
2. Scott got a Weed-Eater and it's awesome. We were trying to purchase lawn care items that are more toward the manual end of the spectrum and less toward the gas-powered monsters end. Back in April we trotted over to Lowe's and picked up a Fiskar's Reel Mower. It's a great work out for Scott and just perfect for the size of our yard. I don't think a gas-powered monster would even work in our backyard! We did a long search for some sort of manual edger/weed-eater guy and came up with nothing. A few online antique stores had options that were pretty much rusted immobile. Luckily, Free-Cycle day came, and we got an electric version from our neighbors. It only cost us a 100ft $40 extension cord. And now our lawn looks MUCH better. Still needs some work, but I'm not worried our neighbors hate us anymore.

3. Also on Free-Cycle Day in our neighborhood (sponsored by the Northwest Neighborhood Association and Sustainable Delaware), we also picked up a set of wicker furniture. It's in great structural shape, but it needs some cosmetic help. The finding/making of cushions as well as repainting the set and deciding where it shall live is on the docket for a post, or posts, to come soon.

4. We took down all the old-fashioned valances, shower curtain and curtains (could they even be called curtains?) in the guest room. It feels so, so great! The dining room feels much lighter and more open now, the guest bedroom looks less like an experiment in color and pattern gone bad, and the bathroom has sparked some ideas.

5. I covered an old stationary box with some brown Kraft paper to make a jewelry box. It's much better than the previous look, but I do hope to embellish it a little more sometime.

5. I've been practicing my calligraphy a lot. I am really hoping to be open for business as Bespoke Letterings next spring in time for the summer wedding season. We shall see.

6. We're planning for a mini re-do in the upstairs bathroom. Since this bathroom--our only full bath that we share with guests and will someday share with our kids-- is at the bottom of the "let's completely gut this and start over" renovation list, we think we may do a few touch up projects to make it more enjoyable, and in some cases usable, for us over the next decade. My next post will be about the planning for this project. And then hopefully we'll actually get around to doing it and I'll share all the fun stories.

8. I had really hoped to participate in the Young House Love/Katie Bower/Emily Henderson and friend Pinterest Challenge this weekend (you can see their fun video invitation to join in here), and I even decided which project I would tackle. And then I never made it to the fabric store this week. But I still intend to complete my project and share it with the world. It just may be late. Can I get an extension, please, Sherry?

So, what have you all been up to? Any summer maintenance I should know about as a new home owner? Have you ever gotten some awesome furniture for free? What did you do with it? What projects from pinterest have you tackled? Do you like my current plan for a business name--Bespoke Letterings?


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