The First Time Ever I Saw Hathorn Hall

This was the first picture

This was the first picture I took of what is now Hathorn Hall.

Hey, y’all! Welcome back to SSL. I hope that everyone is having a blessed week so far. Hasn’t it gone by so quickly! Time always seems to move faster in summer. *sigh*

Today on the blog, we are going to journey back to the very first time I toured my new home. It was a chilly, sunshine-filled day…back in the fall of last year. I was stressed out from all the house hunting…and was about to give up…and stay in Alabama…but then…my sweet, patient realtor showed me a newly renovated 1920 house…and it was love at first sight *smile*

*Note: I apologize for the quality of the photos…they were just notes for me to remember the house by…not meant for sharing, but I just had to share them with y’all *smile*

Tip: When house hunting, take photos and notes of the houses you tour because it really is hard to remember all the little details and problems of each house.

 

The warm sunshine rays and the cool breeze made a wonderful first impression

The warm sunshine rays and the cool breeze made a wonderful first impression. I knew this spot would be perfect for a porch swing–a really pink porch swing *wink*

The porch...oh, the beautiful porch.

The porch…oh, the beautiful porch! Did y’all know that I loved front porches, sitting a spell, and coffee? *smile*

Guest bedroom upstairs.

Guest bedroom upstairs–I was so impressed with the refinished hardwood floors, the light from the windows, and the tall ceilings of each of the guest bedrooms.

Guest bedroom number two--love all the windows and the space

Guest bedroom #2–once again, I was in love with the big windows and all the light pouring in…

Bench in the guest bathroom upstairs

Bench in the guest bathroom upstairs–my favorite bathroom in the entire house. I cannot wait to show y’all what I am doing in here!!

Master bath separated with a pocket door from the master suite

Master bath separated with a pocket door from the master suite…the hubby and I have bought the floor for the space…we just have not had the time to install it…one of these days *smile*

Mater bedroom--part one

Mater bedroom–part one…stay tuned for the progress on the master suite–new hardwood floors, a gorgeous headboard the hubby built from…wait…I have said too much already!

Master suite part two

Master suite part two–the windows…oh, how I love these windows…and the view…y’all the view is amazing…

Oh, these windows and the view--the porch had me at Hello, but the master bedroom caused me to tear up and beg the hubby for this house ;)

Oh, these windows and the view–the porch had me at “Hello”–but the master bedroom caused me to tear up and beg the hubby for this house *wink*

Down the stairs to the parlor

Down the stairs to the parlor…I cannot wait to fill the walls with art!

View as soon as you step inside the front door

View as soon as you step inside the front door

Fireplace love!

Fireplace love! Y’all know I love me some old fireplaces…and windows…and front porches *wink* This is the fireplace in the parlor.

My first look at the parlor. Who doesn't love lots of windows and richly colored wood

My first look at the parlor. Who doesn’t love lots of windows and richly colored wood!

Butler's Pantry

Butler’s Pantry–I knew this would become my beverage station…I will chat about that on a future blog post.

Peek inside the kitchen--the tall ceilings and all the cabinet space!

Peek inside the kitchen–the tall ceilings and all the cabinet space…and guess what else? Yes, the windows *smile*

Dining room--once again the windows had me. I sound like a broken record...but I do love my windows.

Dining room–once again the windows had me. I sound like a broken record…but I do love my windows…the floors also had me…and the tall ceilings…well, everything about this house stole my heart!

Thanks for sitting a spell with me as we looked back at the first time ever I saw Hathorn Hall…let us continue to sit a spell and sing a little “The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face” by Roberta Flack…”The first time ever I saw your face–I thought the sun rose in your eyes…blah…na…na…that is all the words I know…the first time ever I saw your face…na…na….”

 

Transformation Tuesday: Before and Almost After of the Art Studio

Slowly, but surely it is all coming together *smile* Me--cleaning each crystal of the chandelier...one by one...

Slowly, but surely it is all coming together *smile* Me–cleaning each crystal of the chandelier…one by one…with a little help from the VIP and my coffee *wink*

Hey, y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living–a place where you sit a spell with a good cup of coffee or nice glass of wine–a place where I hope my mess and renovations inspire you to start your own DIY projects.

Today on the blog we are chatting about a transformation that is still taking place in my new home–which one of my neighbors suggested calling it “Hathorn Hall”–which the hubby and I loved…and we decided that it was the perfect name….Anyway, where was I? Oh, yes! Today’s blog is all about the transformation of my art studio–from the moment I first saw it until this morning when I snapped a few photos for y’all. *Note: I apologize for the quality of the photos…I am not a photographer *wink*

The studio space is located in a small guest bedroom on the second floor. I immediately fell in love with its quirkiness and character. I knew it needed some love and personality, but the light from the windows was perfect!

I immediately fell in love with the quirkiness and character of this room. I knew it needed some love and personality + the light from the windows makes it the perfect space for painting and creating!

I love the ceiling, the old windows and their frames, the old doors and their knobs...oh, I love everything about this room!

I love the ceiling, the old windows and their frames, the old door and its knob…oh, I love everything about this room!

My photo does the floors absolutely no justice. The original floors were refinished with such care--and they are absolutely gorgeous in person! I promise to have a professional photographer come in and shoot better pics *smile*

My photo does the floors absolutely no justice. The original floors were refinished with such care–and they are absolutely gorgeous in person! I promise to have a professional photographer come in and shoot better pics *smile*

This is the before photo of the chandelier. It was originally in the Sloss Castle house that the hubby and I renovated in Alabama.

This is the before photo of the chandelier. It was originally in the Sloss Castle house that the hubby and I renovated in Alabama. Me–taking a photo during the first tour…making notes of all of the work to be done.

The chandelier that is now in the art studio was originally in the "Hers" side of the master bath in Sloss Castle. It was sooooo dirty and grimy...but I knew it had the potential to sparkle and shine...like a diamond.

The chandelier that is now in the art studio was originally in the “Hers” side of the master bath in Sloss Castle. It was sooooo dirty and grimy…but I knew it had the potential to sparkle and shine…like a diamond. P.S. I have no idea what my daughter is doing in this photo…haha

Tah dah! Isn't it pretty and shiny!

Tah dah! Isn’t it pretty and shiny!

I. LOVE. THIS. COLOR.

I love this color…and so I painted my art studio walls with it. It is so bright and cheery.

I have a wall of blank canvases displayed to remind me that opportunities and possibilities are limitless. I also decoupaged my old teacher's podium that my dad made me in pretty scrapbooking paper.

I have a wall of blank canvases to remind me that opportunities and possibilities are limitless. I also used pretty scrapbooking paper to decoupage my old teacher’s podium that my dad made for me in 1995.

The plan is to fill the walls with things that inspire me and make me smile.

The plan is to fill the walls with things that inspire me and make me smile.

An old bench that I found at an antique mall in Springville, Alabama years ago. I paid $15 for it. Never painted it because I liked the worn peachy color. Bless its heart--it has been outside, stored in a garage, moved numerous times, stored in a basement...and now, finally has a home in a place full of cheer.

An old bench that I found at an antique mall in Springville, Alabama years ago. I paid $15 for it–never painted it because I like the worn peachy color. Bless its heart–it has been outside, stored in a garage, moved numerous times, stored in a basement…and now, finally has a home in a place full of cheer.

I must be organized...and I am still working on getting everything in its place--but I am off to a pretty good start. I have had the rolling island for many years, and it is one of my best furniture investments. I am also very glad that the hubby put the rollers on it. He is the best *smile*

I am still working on getting everything in its place–Good news is I am off to a pretty good start with the ClosetMaid organization system from the Home Depot. I am a huge fan girl of ClosetMaid because it is customizable and easy to install. The rolling island has been around for many years, and it is one of my best furniture investments. P.S. I am very glad that the hubby put the rollers on it. He is the best *smile*

Love this old tool box tray as a "container" for the paints. I just put the ones I am currently using in there along with the brushes...and it is easy peasy to paint and be organized *wink*

Love this old tool box tray as a “container” for the paints. The plan is to put the ones I will be using in there along with the brushes I will need…and it will be easy peasy to paint and be organized–at the same time *wink*

Whew! It has been a lot of work, but totally worth it. I cannot wait to finish organizing because I am so very ready to get back to creating *BIG SMILE*

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we took a look at the before and almost after of my new art studio at Hathorn Hall.

 

 

Sweet and Dirty’s Emporium of Good Stuff with a little Transformation Tuesday

 

It seems I had to fight my whole life through. Some gal would giggle and I'd get red. And some guy'd laugh and I'd bust his head. I tell ya, life ain't easy for a boy named "Sue."--Johnny Cash

It seems I had to fight my whole life through. Some gal would giggle and I’d get red. And some guy’d laugh, and I’d bust his head. I tell ya, life ain’t easy for a boy named “Sue.”–Johnny Cash (handmade, cross-stitched lovely by Logan McClelland of Sweet & Dirty’s)

Hey, y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living! Thanks so much for visiting us today. If your old friends, you know what to do–but if this is your first time with us–the rules are simple:

1. Grab a good cup of coffee or nice glass of wine.

2. Sit a spell with us.

That’s it! We like to keep things simple around here. Speaking of simple, one of my favorite authors said it best–“Our life is frittered away by detail. Simplify, simplify, simplify! I say, let your affairs be as two or three, and not a hundred or a thousand; instead of a million count half a dozen, and keep your accounts on your thumb-nail.” Thank you, Henry David Thoreau, for reminding us that we need to slow down and pare down.

Blue Plum Festival 2014

Blue Plum Festival 2014 in downtown Johnson City, Tennessee–entry to the food court area

My daughter, Abby Hathorn of the Vintage Inspired Passionista, posing for a fan photo.

My daughter, Abby Hathorn of the Vintage Inspired Passionista, posing for a fan photo.

My daughter and I had the best time at the Blue Plum Festival in Johnson City, Tennessee. We spent hours checking out all the vendors and their goods–looking for handmade artisans and items that stood out from the rest. We attend so many arts and crafts festivals that sometimes all the booths and wares run together–or seem to all be the same. We found two adorable booths that grabbed our attention–and today, I am going to share one with y’all. Head over to the Vintage Inspired Passionista for the second vendor that wowed us. For second vendor that wowed us, click here.

Sweet & Dirty's Emporium of Good Stuff was one of the VIP and SSL Top Picks at the Blue Plum Festival.

Sweet & Dirty’s Emporium of Good Stuff was one of the VIP and SSL Top Picks at the Blue Plum Festival.

As we wandered the streets of downtown Johnson City looking for our favorite things, we spied the adorable Sweet & Dirty’s Emporium of Good Stuff. We were drawn inside by the rows of cross-stitched sayings…some funny, some sweet, and some just stating it like it is. Of course, the name was also intriguing–how could an adorable little shop be sweet & dirty? After chatting with Logan McClelland and her mom, we knew the answer–it was a combination of her being called “Sweet Logan” and her husband being known as “Dirty”–nicknames given to them by friends. I wonder what combo name the hubby and I would have? Hmmm…Anyway…back to this adorable shop of goodness. Logan is a proud stay-at-home mom, who makes the most darling things using vintage and recycled materials. Y’all must go check out her Etsy shop and her Facebook page for more of the lowdown on Sweet & Dirty’s.

Etsy Shop:  Click here.

Facebook: Click here.

Now, it is time for Transformation Tuesday! 

This week, I want to take a look back at the curb appeal transformation of Sloss Castle–which was the massive renovation project that the hubby and I took on back in December 2012 with it ending in January 2014…just in time for us to get the freshly renovated house on the market and move…again…but that is a story for another day! 

When we first spotted Sloss Castle, it was covered up by overgrown bushes and ivy. The mullions on the windows screamed outdated, and the steps were just blah. It needed love...and we were willing to give it.

When we first spotted Sloss Castle, it was covered up by overgrown bushes and ivy. The mullions on the windows screamed outdated, and the steps were just blah. It needed love…and we were willing to give it.

We knew the house had the potential to shine–so we revealed its hidden beauty by clearing out the shrubbery, repairing the steps, and having the outside painted. We chose a lighter shade than the original to showcase the natural elements surrounding the house, we removed the mullions from all the windows to give the house a fresh, updated look, and the hubby built planter boxes for the steps to add a bit of height and interest–something to draw friends and family inside.

The hubby built six wooden planters for the steps. They are not attached--just designed to sit perfectly pretty.

The hubby built six wooden planters for the steps. They are not attached–just designed to sit perfectly pretty.

We painted the planters bright white to match the trim of the house. These containers are a perfect way to add pops of color to the ordinary brown steps.

We painted the planters bright white to match the trim of the house. These containers are a lovely way to add pops of color to the ordinary brown steps.

IMG_4144

This photo was taken Fall 2013--just after we had added new shrubs...and the leaves were in full show.

This photo was taken Fall 2013–just after we had added new shrubs…and the leaves were in full show. It is amazing what a little bit of hard work and a lot of patience can produce!

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today. I hope that you enjoyed your rest, a look at the Sweet & Dirty, and a major Transformation Tuesday.

 

Thinking Outside the Box Because I Hate Propping Things Against Walls

Master Bedroom Curtain and Curtain Rod

Master Bedroom Curtain and Curtain Rod–stay tuned for a master bedroom reveal! Be sure to follow me on social media for sneak peeks 🙂

Hey, y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living! If this is your first time visiting, let me explain quickly what we do here. It’s simple. Go grab a good cup of coffee or a nice glass of wine, sit a spell with me, and enjoy my randomness–everything from home renovation projects to chats about living with type 1 diabetes and Celiac. That’s all there is to it. Now, let’s get to chatting about thinking outside the box–using things for other than their intended purposes.

My new house has a lot of big windows, which I absolutely love; however, I am not much of a curtain girl–but my power bill says that I need to be. So, I got curtains for the bedrooms upstairs…hoping that will satisfy the hubby’s need for privacy and lower the power bill. Long story short. After my curtain hanging party, I had extra curtain rod brackets…I am thinking that this is normal when one orders those really long rods…the rods seem perfectly secure, and the curtains are not sagging…so, I am going to say that it is normal to have leftovers.

Now, I am a saver of the junk…and I cannot throw away perfectly good items…so, this is what I decided to do with the extra curtain rod brackets.

blah blah

Thankfully, I have a handy hubby who knows how to take my excited chatter and turn it into my vision…and that is what he did. The hubby stopped his project to come help me with mine…and the end result was double fabulous because I used the extra curtain rod brackets AND my ironing board was no longer propped against the wall. Now, I just have to decide what color to paint the laundry room and get the hubby to hang an old ladder–but that is a story for another day.

Think outside the box

A few weeks ago, I bought a shower caddy thinking that it would be perfect for my shower…nope…it was not. Why not return it? Well, I not only threw away the receipt, but I also threw away all the packaging that came with it. Against everything in me, I propped it against the wall in the master bath because I really did not want to make a trip to the basement.

Yesterday, I was sorting through the chaos in my art studio when I had the best idea ever…well, all my great ideas are the best ideas ever…where was I? Oh, yes! My great idea for the shower caddy…I needed a place for bigger paints and such, and the shower caddy was perfect for storing those items. It fit just right in a tiny, awkward space…right behind my podium (which I must tell y’all the story behind my podium). It was a win. The shower caddy has a home, nothing is propping on my walls in the master bath, my painting space is better organized, and I did not waste $14.78.

bought this

Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we looked at ways to use things for other than their intended purposes. Now I am off to tackle the chaos in one of my guest rooms…but before I get too involved with that, I am going on a Starbucks run *smile*

tackle this mess

Transformation Tuesday: It’s All About Fireplaces

 

Today on the blog, we are going to sit a spell around the fireplace and chat about the Victorian era fireplace in my new home, which was built in 1920, and the transformation of the 1980 fireplace in the last house that the hubby and I renovated. Thank goodness, we do not have to renovate or restore in our current home like we did in our last one! That monster project took a toll on my nerves and my wallet *smile*

20140603_125630

I fell in love with the fireplace in the parlor as soon as I saw this late 19th or early 20th century Victorian era ornamental cast iron, deep relief summer cover with matching surround. Its days of burning coal are long gone, but its beauty still remains.

20140603_125705

One of my favorite types of molding is the Egg-and-Dart. I love sitting in the parlor imagining all the stories that were told around this fireplace. No interruptions from text messages, emails, or Facebook notifications.

20140603_125644

Before the hubby cleaned the tiles with baking soda and a razor blade–along with several other concoctions–the tiny ceramic pieces were dull black from many years of coal dust and neglect. Now, they are dazzling shades of greens.

20140603_125611

The parlor is coming along nicely. The hubby painted the walls a couple of weeks after we moved into our renovated 1920 home. Y’all know I love color so I had to punch up the room with “Aloe” in Satin by Sherwin Williams. We decided to use the “SuperPaint” Paint and Primer in One because the tall walls combined with the rough texture needed a superior one-coat coverage. Normally, I am a Behr or Valspar girl; however, I have to admit that Sherwin Williams impressed the hubby and me with this paint and its excellent coverage with little spatter. Two Thumbs Up and Five Stars, Sherwin Williams!

Now, let’s take a look at a transformation Tuesday fireplace from the last house the hubby and I renovated.

I took this photo the day we toured the house. The hubby and I knew that the fireplace and its built-ins had potential. After walking through the entire house, we decided to tackle the approximate 3,000 square feet renovation. It was a lot of hard work and interesting conversations, but we lived to tell the tale.

I took this photo the day we toured the house. The hubby and I knew that the fireplace and its built-ins had potential. After walking through the entire house, we decided to tackle the approximate 3,000 square foot renovation. It was a lot of hard work and interesting conversations, but we finished the monster project and lived to tell the tale.

All she needed was some love, paint, a new mantel, and few other odds and ends to be as good as new--well, better than new *smile*

All she needed was some love, paint, a new mantel, and few other odds and ends to be as good as new–well, better than new *smile*

The finished product--the fireplace turned out better than we had imagined it!

The finished product–the fireplace turned out better than we had imagined it!

I loved this living room! The windows framed the view, the fireplace anchored the room, and the subtle color on the walls enhanced the oak floors. Good News--my new living room also has large windows and a fabulous fireplace--so, stay tuned to the blog for all the details and photos!

I loved this living room! The windows framed the view, the fireplace anchored the room, and the subtle color on the walls enhanced the oak floors. Good News–my new living room also has large windows and a fabulous fireplace–so, stay tuned to the blog for all the details and photos!

Don’t y’all just love fireplaces–where stockings are hung, tales are told, and buns are toasted! I know I do because they remind me of days gone by…sitting in a rocking chair inside my Grandmother and Granddaddy Fulcher’s house, eating homemade cookies (my Grandmother made the best tea cake and molasses cookies), and listening to stories about cousin so-and-so….I can only hope that I will tell stories as well as my grandparents and Uncle Mackie did!

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about fireplaces. Be sure to connect with me on all my social media for all kinds of randomness and happenings.

 

Chin Up Buttercup Because You Don’t Always Get What You Want

Chin Up Buttercup pillow from Stein Mart in Johnson City, Tennessee

Chin Up Buttercup pillow from Stein Mart in Johnson City, Tennessee

My goodness! It has been a long time since we have sat a spell and chatted. So much has happened since I put my running shoes on that I don’t even know where to start…Hmmmm…perhaps I should just make a brief list…and leave all the details and ins and outs for another day.

  • After I posted my last article “I’ve Got My Running Shoes On“–the little family and I kicked the renovation into high gear.
  • Lots of work, prayers, and breakdowns later–our house in Trussville, Alabama sold.
  • We were “homeless” for a few weeks because our house in Alabama sold before our house in Johnson City was ready–plus, there were several problems with paperwork–is my name really that hard to spell?
  • Moved into the new house–almost immediately painted the porch swing that my dad made me many moons ago bright pink.
  • Went to Stein Mart bought fun pillows–couldn’t resist the Chin Up Buttercup one because it was what I needed at that exact moment to remind me that God was right there with me–telling me that He had not left me…that I just needed to learn a few life lessons to make me a better, stronger person.
Paint Details--Valspar Duramax in Pantone Honeysuckle from Lowe's in Johnson City, Tennessee  Pillow Shams--Stein Mart in Johnson City, Tennessee   Decorative Pillow--Stien Mart in Johnson City, Tennessee

Paint Details–Valspar Duramax in Pantone Honeysuckle from Lowe’s

20140424_163538

This photo was taken just a couple of weeks after we moved into our home built in 1920.

The porch had me at "Hello" *smile*

The porch had me at “Hello” *smile*

Mattie and I taking a much needed rest on the front porch. We had been painting all day!

Mattie and I taking a much needed rest on the front porch. We had been painting all day! Well, I had been painting. Mattie had been playing and napping.

Well, I must be going because I have to decide which color to stain my new fence–decisions, decisions. Stay tuned to the blog and my social media for all the updates, projects, randomness, nonsense, and much more 🙂 Be sure to check out my weekly Sweet Sorghum Living Short Tales at Real Media. 

Connect and Like me on Facebook for exclusive photos and updates on my art.

Follow me on Instagram to keep up with all the cuteness of Mattie, my adventures, and much more.

Follow me on Twitter for all the Etsy items I adore, retweets, and giveaways I enter.

Follow me Pinterest to see what inspires me.

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today, and in the famous words of the Rolling Stones–“You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes you just might find–you get what you need.” So, chin up my buttercups 🙂

 

Throwback Thursday: A Few of My Favorite Painted Things

IMG_3331My goodness! It has been a bit since I last sat a spell with y’all. My apologies for that.

To catch y’all up on a few things…

  • The renovation is still not complete…which is not so good news because we need to get it ready to go on the market ASAP….
  • The hubby very recently took a  job in Bristol, Tennessee…yes, we just moved to Alabama at the end of November 2012…yep, that was last year…you’re right…not even a year ago….
  • I am writing a weekly column called “Sweet Sorghum Living Short Tales” for Real Media. Check it out at www.thisisrealmedia.com.
  • My daughter is keeping us all busy–but that is perfectly wonderful because I am a super proud mom! Check out her fabulousness at www.vintageinspiredpassionista.com.

That’s enough catching up! Let’s take a look at a few of my favorite painted things.

I love this little chicken that I painted a few years ago. It is just so cute and colorful.

I love this little chicken that I painted a few years ago. It is just so cute and colorful.

IMG_3543

I love the color combination on the tiny table. The fabric top with the painted silver edge just makes me smile.

I love the color combination on this tiny table. The fabric top with the painted silver edge just adds a touch of adorable glam.

The fabric insert combined with the stripes makes this side table an adorable addition to any room.

The fabric insert with its tiny blue flowers and the blue stripes add a pop of color to this side table.

It was not easy stenciling the floor, but so totally worth it.

It was not easy stenciling this floor, but so totally worth it.

Absolutely my most favorite piece that I have painted to date. I love everything about it!

Absolutely my most favorite piece that I have painted to date. I love everything about it!

This is the original Peony the Peacock. She will always be my favorite.

This is the original Peony the Peacock. She will always be my favorite.

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today. Be sure to follow me on Tumblr. It is a quick and easy way for me to post updates, my favorite finds, and more. Check it out at www.chasidyhathorn.tumblr.com, and be sure to press that “follow” button.

For a few giggles, check out my latest “Sweet Sorghum Living Short Tales: Long Pause…No Answer” at http://thisisrealmedia.com/2013/09/06/sweet-sorghum-living-short-tales-long-pauseno-answer/

For a tender moment, check out “I Love Little Baby Ducks and My Dad” at http://thisisrealmedia.com/2013/08/30/sweet-sorghum-living-short-tales-i-love-little-baby-ducks-and-my-dad/

Moving Boxes, Barristers, and Cow Figurines

BArristers at hatridge

My husband’s barristers at HatRidge.  While house hunting for the new place, Stan had three major must-haves.  (1) privacy (2) a place to put his large, handmade walnut table that belonged to his grandfather (3) a place to put his barristers that belonged to his grandfather and father

It is funny how I really never thought about my belongings until I had to move them.  I never thought about how heavy or how big or how many.

The family and I (aka the Hathorns) have moved three times since 2008.  Life happens quickly.  It an instant everything can change…from good to bad…from bad to good…from bad to worse…from good to better.  You get it 🙂

Hand stamped charm and necklace by Beadsoul.  Check out her Etsy shop at

Hand stamped charm and necklace by Beadsoul. Check out her Etsy shop at www.etsy.com/shop/beadsoul

Now, it is time to grab a good cup of coffee and sit a spell with me as we explore “Moving Boxes, Barristers, and Cow Figurines.”

It was a gorgeous Sunday.  The family and I were having our traditional lunch at Sweet Pepper’s Deli in Starkville, Mississippi.  We were sitting on the patio enjoying the Southern sunshine, chatting about nonsense, and laughing at each other’s ridiculousness.  Suddenly, the unthinkable happens…the unexpected…the “didn’t see that coming”….

The hubby received a call from his boss that changed everything with which we were comfortable…that changed our thinking and our future.  It set in motion a series of events that cannot be explained in a few paragraphs.

The company for which Stan worked was closing its doors…effective immediately.  Now, I am not going to bore y’all with all the details…but know this…God had His hands in it all from the very beginning.

Custom hand stamped boho bracelet by Lisa Hamilton of Beadsoul

Custom hand stamped boho bracelet by Lisa Hamilton of Beadsoul–check out my blog post “Moving Forward While Stuck” at www.sweetsorghumliving.wordpress.com/2013/01/14/moving-forward-while-stuck/

So, the mister and I did not hesitate.  We prayed.  We took a leap of faith.  We left our hometown and moved to the outskirts of Birmingham.

I am embarrassed  to admit that we rushed a bit in deciding on which house to purchase.  Everything was such a whirlwind.

Stan was living in a hotel.  Abby and I were staying back at HatRidge so we both could finish out the school year.  She was in 7th grade, and I was a school teacher.  It was the right thing to do.

We got a fabulous deal on the Argo house…it was new construction and gorgeous…but there was a lack of privacy…and the noise from the interstate that was nearby was unbearable to folks who grew up in the country…where every cricket and tree frog could be heard.

Something had to change.

The house was everything on our "must have" list--but it didn't take long for the lack of privacy and noise to make the "dream home" a nightmare!

Even with a lovely backyard, it didn’t take long for the lack of privacy and noise to make the Argo “dream home” a nightmare!

Luckily…and not so luckily…we still owned our Mississippi house–HatRidge.  What did we decide to do?  Sell and move.  Pack up all the belongings…again.  The hubby was back to living in a hotel, and Abby and I were back at HatRidge.

It was nice to be back–with family, friends, and the familiar…but we were not a family.  Abby missed her dad.  I missed him.  He missed us.  What to do?

We prayed.  We cried.  We decided to sell HatRidge and become a family once more.  Long story–short.  It all happened in God’s perfect timing…we sold…we moved…we are renovating.

This time around…we have privacy…there is no traffic noise…the views are grand…the pool is splendid…the project list is shrinking…and we are a happy family under one roof.

The before photo of our new place...stay with me as we reveal the during and the final photos.

The before photo of our new place…stay with me as we reveal the during and the final photos…I have removed all the overgrown bushes from the front and have managed to kill most of the English Ivy that was left to grow anywhere and everywhere!

Back to those beloved barristers.  The plan was to downsize…that did not happen.  We actually upsized.  It did not take long in the house hunting process to figure out that Stan’s furniture was not going to fit into a smaller house.

It was a struggle even in a larger house to figure out where to put his beloved bookcases.  I wanted to keep them together as a set because I loved the grand-scale impact.  After several attempts of keeping them together, I realized that sometimes a breakup is necessary.

I placed ten of the cases in the kitchen.  At first, I had twelve--stacked almost to the ceiling--but decided that I wanted to create a vignette at the top.

I placed ten of the cases in the kitchen. At first, I had twelve–stacked almost to the ceiling–but decided that I wanted to create a vignette at the top.

Barristers in the kitchen filled with everything from books to pottery

Barristers in the kitchen filled with everything from books to pottery

I stacked twelve of the barristers in the dining room and filled them with family treasures and memories.

I stacked twelve of the barristers in the dining room and filled them with family treasures and memories.  I currently have two left, and they are tucked safely away in the garage until I decide what to do with them.

What I have learned from all of the unexpected and the moving process is breaking up is hard to do, but sometimes necessary.  I have also come to realize that it is God’s job to plan our futures and not our jobs to tell God what to do…sometimes, God has to get us out of our comfort zone so we will truly walk in faith.

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today.  Be sure to check out my latest articles at Real Story Publishing for tips on how to create family heirloom vignettes and how to create fabulous wall galleries.

How to Create Wall Galleries:  “Sweet Sorghum Living Short Tales:  Lightning Bugs in a Mason Jar” http://thisisrealmedia.com/2013/06/28/sweet-sorghum-living-short-tales-lightning-bugs-in-a-mason-jar/

How to Create Family Heirloom Vignettes:  “”Sweet Sorghum Living Short Tales:  What to Do With Cow Figurines”  http://thisisrealmedia.com/2013/06/21/sweet-sorghum-living-short-tales-what-do-you-do-with-cow-figurines/

Have a Blessed Day!

Chasidy

Shiny, Happy Basement

969954_10200162162881463_1258206502_nIt has been too long since we visited.  My goodness, there needs to be two of me…more on some days!

The home renovation is coming along…slowly, but surely.  If there were more time in the day, we would probably be finished in a month or so..but since we are limited by the 24-hour boundary…I guess we will do the best we can.

Glidden Duo in Granny Smith Apple in Semi-Gloss from the Home Depot

Glidden Duo in Granny Smith Apple in Semi-Gloss from Home Depot

The basement is in the final stage…decorating…which to me is always the most challenging.  It is easy to tear it up…toss it out…and even put it back together…but deciding what to bring into the room…that part always gets me.  Whew!  I am getting stressed thinking about it….

Now, grab a cup of coffee…or a tropical fruit smoothie…and sit a spell with me as we explore the colors in the shiny, happy basement.

On the concrete block walls, we used Glidden Duo in a semi-gloss finish because I wanted to bounce a little light around that dark space.  To liven it up even more, we chose a bright and fun Granny Smith Apple color–it went from drab to fab in no time!

Wall color--Glidden Duo in Lime Sorbet in a subtle eggshell finish

Wall color–Glidden Duo in Lime Sorbet in a subtle eggshell finish from Home Depot

On the sheetrock walls, we painted a shade lighter in a soft eggshell finish.  Do not even get me started on the condition of those walls!  Thank you, previous homeowners, for doing it yourself without instructions.

Personally, I love semi-gloss paint because of its durability and clean-ability.  Let’s face it–when you live in a house with three dogs, a hubby, and a teenage fashionista…things are going to get touched…bumped…and dirty!  Despite my love affair with semi-gloss, I had to go with eggshell on the “sheetrocked” walls because of all of the imperfections.  Eggshell, satin, and flat finishes are perfect for hiding all kinds of wall sins.

Risers are in Behr Premium Plus Interior Eggshell Enamel in Japanese Kimono and the steps are in Behr Concrete and Garage Floor Paint 1-Part Epoxy in Pyramid

Risers are in Behr Premium Plus Interior Eggshell Enamel in Japanese Kimono and the steps are in Behr Concrete and Garage Floor Paint 1-Part Epoxy in Pyramid–both from Home Depot

Deciding on the color of the stairs was not an easy task.  Compromise and a wee bit of loud discussion between the mister and me helped make the final color selection.  I had visions of rainbow stairs…or shades of blue and green…each step and riser a different color…Stan envisioned more of one solid color…or khaki and white…

Finally, we played the “Go to Home Depot and Pick Out What Colors You Like” game.  Stan had cool shades of gray and blue…Abby had brighter shades of blue–yes, we sometimes let Abby play the home renovation games–I picked lime greens and corals.  Several hours later…we decided on lime greens and a deep coral (Japanese Kimono).  Was it a victory for me?  For the most part…but I still would have loved to have had rainbow stairs.

Floor color--Behr Concrete and Garage Paint 1-Part Epoxy in Pyramid

Floor color–Behr Concrete and Garage Paint 1-Part Epoxy in Pyramid

Stan did get his khaki wish.  With all the shiny, happy on the walls and risers, we decided to tone down the floor.  The Pyramid color was perfect!

Stan is happy–I am happy…the loud discussions about the basement are over.  We have even made a couple of upcycled projects for the room.  I will save those for another day…so stay tuned for a little upcycling fun!

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today.  Be sure to check out my latest article at This Is Real Media–“Basement: Plan B and Working On Plan C” at http://thisisrealmedia.com/2013/06/14/sweet-sorghum-living-short-tales-basement-plan-b-and-working-on-plan-c/

Have a Blessed and Beautiful Day!

Chasidy

One Blonde and a Stan: The Genesis of the Basement Renovation

IMG_9663

The basement project is in full swing even though we are short one blonde. Abby has been a bit under the weather and has been really busy being the VIP…so it has just been Stan and myself.

The plan to renovate the basement started innocently. I thought that it would be a simple project.  There was really no other choice because the room was dark, dingy, and scary.  I have shed many a tear walking down the carpeted stairs into the pit of carpeted filth.  Our bad weather safe zone was not really “safe”…it was frightening.  Something had to be done.

I thought, “How hard could it possibly be?”  Get in.  Get out.  Done.  No, I am afraid that is not how it went.

IMG_9599

Apparently, we love living in a mess and on a prayer…thank you, Bon Jovi, for your musical inspiration…

IMG_9601

Now, grab a cup of coffee (iced coffee is pretty delicious), and sit a spell with me, as we take a look at the genesis of the basement transformation…Note:  it is not finished yet…but one blonde and a Stan are getting close!

First, we had to get the disgusting carpet out and the dried glue removed…it was so gross…and that is all I want to say about it.  To read more about this ordeal, check out my article “Sweet Sorghum Living Short Tales:  Thoughts While Scraping Glue” at This is Real Media http://thisisrealmedia.com/2013/05/31/sweet-sorghum-living-short-tales-thoughts-while-scraping-glue/

My plan was to start painting immediately after the last inch of glue was scraped, but that is not what happened.  The original basement renovator did not tape the sheetrock joints…and probably did not use or even own a tape measure.  So…we had to do a little sheetrock repair.  Then we had to do a little “drylocking” on the concrete blocks…

IMG_9587

Carpet gone from the stars, glue removed from the floor, and sheetrock repaired

Carpet gone from the stars, glue removed from the floor, and sheetrock repaired

Stan doing a little sanding...notice that I put a little art on the wall...it was serving as inspiration.

Stan showing off his mad sheetrocking skills…notice the wall art…it was serving as inspiration…and hope….

While we were waiting for the sheetrock mud and drylock paint to dry, we started priming and painting the tribute to Roll Tide doors and trim.  I have never encountered such…but we persevered…and the crimson became Ultra White (Behr–Home Depot).

IMG_9597

IMG_9659

We replaced ceiling tiles and the lights.  I am so glad that Stan replaced the original two light kits with four light ones.  The room is so much brighter.

We replaced ceiling tiles and the lights. I am so glad that Stan replaced the original two light kits with four light ones.  Good call, Stan!

IMG_9603My goodness!  I must be getting back to my basement.  There is still work left to be done.  Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me, and be sure to join me next time for all the details about wall colors, floor color, how we hid the plumbing, and much more.

Also, check out my latest article at This Is Real Media, “Sweet Sorghum Living Short Tales:  How to Eat and Paint an Elephant”…guaranteed to make you smile…and it has a few tips about choosing paint sheen http://thisisrealmedia.com/2013/06/07/sweet-sorghum-living-short-tales-how-to-eat-and-paint-an-elephant/

Be sure to “Like” Sweet Sorghum Living and Lolly Molly Art on Facebook to keep up with the latest randomness and blog information! www.facebook.com/lollymollyart

For sneak peeks and cute photos of our precious dogs, follow us on Instagram at http://instagram.com/thelollymolly

Big Hugs xx,

Chasidy