Rain Gutters

We’ve been living in our house for about two years now without gutters!  

Half round, zinc gutters

When it rains for long periods of time, water often leaks into our basement.  We think the lack of gutters directing the water away from the house is contributing to that. Continue reading

Front Porch Steps

Hi, anybody still reading (besides my mom)!?  It’s been a while!  Jack (14 months old) sure is keeping us busy.  🙂


Jack – Spring 2019

Now that the interior is (mostly) finished, we’re turning our attention to the exterior finishing touches and landscaping.  One little project that we just completed was creating new steps up to the front porch.


Front steps – before

The issue with the existing front steps was that they were uneven – mainly in height.  The first and last steps were unnaturally high.  The treads were rather narrow too.  In the photo above, you can see that they were poured long ago on top of brick.


Dad and Blaine removing some of the old sandstone walkway to make way for forms

My dad and husband, Blaine, devised a plan which involved pouring new concrete steps on top of the existing ones.  The new steps would be even in height and tread width.  First, they created wooden forms to contain the new concrete.


Installing forms


Wooden forms complete – view from front door


Wooden forms complete – waiting for weather to clear up before pouring concrete


Close up of the wooden forms on the bottom step

Once the forms were installed, we waited for the rain to pass before ordering concrete from our local ready mix provider.  (The temporary plastic under the forms was meant to catch any oil that may have dripped from the wooden forms, as they were lightly coated in oil to prevent concrete from bonding to them.)


Blaine, Dad, and Larry finishing and removing forms

I missed the actually pouring of the concrete as I was out on a long run.  I came home a couple hours later to find the guys finishing. Here are a couple pics that my husband took during the pour:

Blaine brought the concrete from the truck up to the stairs in the tractor bucket

Dad filling in the bottom step

After several hours of setting up, it was time to remove the wooden forms and finish the concrete.


We did a slightly rough finish


Curing the new steps

Then we allowed the concrete to cure for three days under a protective plastic cover.


New steps complete

There was much more thought put into these steps than it may seem.  We are planning to (5-10 year plan) rework the front walkway and driveway, so there was some conversation with our designer about what color/material/finish the steps should be.  In the end, we decided on plain ol’ concrete as we have found a natural stone that closely matches the color of unstained/natural concrete. These materials should work nicely together.


The new steps are a subtle change that most people may not notice, but it’s one more thing checked off our to-do list!


Christmas Home Tour 2018

Blaine and I were honored to have our home featured in part of the town-wide Holiday Home Tour, put on by the local library.  We had lots of fun meeting all of the guests who paid us a visit yesterday.

In case you missed the open-house tour, please enjoy the digital tour below!  Continue reading


We started tiling the guest bathroom tub enclosure over Christmas break (2017)!  After about 4 days of tiling work, Blaine and I finally finished.  

Blaine starting to tile the tub-shower surround

I chose a bright white 3×6″ classic subway tile.  Bright white tile was chosen to go with the blue-gray shades found in our marble bathroom floorsContinue reading

Soapstone Counters

Hi!  With the new baby, I’m a little behind on my posts.  Kitchen and mudroom countertops have been installed for some time now.  We chose black soapstone in both locations for its beauty (cream veins, gray chalky appearance or waxed to a dark luster) and material characteristics (non-porous, heat tolerant, non-reactive to acids like lemon juice and other chemicals).  It’s also historically accurate for the age of our home, as it is one of the oldest stone countertop materials used in the US.

One of the slabs we selected

Apologies for my brevity – I only have a few minutes while our sweet baby boy naps!  Continue reading

Interior Paint Colors

This post is as much for myself as for anybody else (so I remember when it comes time to do touch-ups)!  😉

Double trouble at the paint store

For interior colors, back in 2016, Blaine gave me an eDesign Colour Consultation for my birthday.   It’s some of the best money we’ve spent on the project.  It gives peace of mind that our colors work well with our lighting, flooring, furniture, countertops, and other permanent surfaces.   Continue reading