Renovations – wait, what?

Thursday, March 24

Howdy folks! It’s been a while since my last blog post. We’ve had several family members wondering about our whereabouts these days and one sweet reader even messaged us on Facebook to see if all was OK. All week I’ve been wanting (needing) to take the time to sit down and write a post and since people were starting to wonder about us what better time to do it then on this rainy, muggy day.

We left Lake Yale a few weeks ago and drove a whopping 30 minutes or so to our next location – the front yard of some friends who had just purchased a house on a lake in the Ocala National Forest.

It’s a peaceful area and the view from the back porch and deck are serene.

Besides hanging out and catching up our main reason for being here is to help them with some renovation projects. The main project is adding a master bath with a built in closet however, the first order of business was to change the toilet in the existing bath to a taller toilet and to remove the vanity that was dated and too large for the space which made the already small bathroom even more challenging to get into. So… our first order of business was to demo the vanity (which was done before I could even grab my camera!) and to install the new toilet.

With the installation of the taller and elongated toilet there was very little room left for sitting (or standing) to do one’s business. There was also the fact that once the vanity was removed we had to come up with a solution for the bare floor since a pedestal sink was going in rather than a vanity. Ronnie figured while he was at it he would demo the dated paneling to make way for new paneling that matches existing paneling in the house and lower the ceiling which allowed for a flush mount light (where there originally was none) which, overall, makes for a cozier, well-lit bathroom.

So, what started out as a few simple changes quickly escalated into something more. Don’t they usually?! We’re getting close on finishing up the changes in the first (and only at the moment) bathroom then we’ll wrap our heads around the new bathroom.

While Ronnie made a mess of the first bathroom, hahaha!, I did some painting in the master bedroom, the foyer, and the bottom kitchen cabinets.

The master bedroom was adorned with paintable wallpaper so it went from a sea foam greenish blue color (above bright green carpet, oh my!) to gray…

The gray turned out really nice. The bright green carpet is gone and will be replaced with waterproof laminate in both the bedroom and the master bath. The chosen flooring is going to coordinate nicely with the wall color.

Our friends are living in the house during the renovations and are primarily living out of boxes so we hope to have the first bathroom finished and the master bedroom put together hopefully as soon as next week. We did manage to get most of the kitchen stuffs unpacked and put away so that we could eat cuz ya’ll know we love to eat!

Speaking of eating, we have taken every opportunity to savor all the fresh seafood we can get our hands on. So good! However, we’ve also eaten at some mighty tasty Italian and Greek restaurants that had the best Greek salad and salad dressing. I managed to find a recipe for the dressing so tonight we’re having my version of a Greek salad – thinly sliced lettuce and lean ham, kalamata olives, tomatoes and feta cheese drizzled with the salad dressing I made this morning which is basically red wine vinegar, lemon juice, olive oil, dijon mustard, minced garlic, oregano, salt and pepper. Easy peasy. You can find the recipe I used HERE. Ronnie will bake some chicken to go with the salad. MMmm good!

Now back to the story… I know those of you that followed along on our farm journey and renovations are thinking exactly what we’re thinking – ‘I thought they sold the farm to get away from renovations and upkeep’ – and you’re right! We did do exactly that but we are at it one more time for our friends’ sake. We’re looking at it as a mission trip and we’re all being blessed in different ways for it.

While here we’re also working on getting another opinion on Ronnie’s current cardiovascular situation. I know we’re both curious to see what the doctor has to say and praying for a simple solution.

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There are several sandhill cranes in the area and these two (the one on the left is sitting on the nest) just had a youngun’ and are waiting on a second to hatch (according to the next door neighbor)…

Hopefully it will hatch soon and they’ll both be safe from the grunting gator I hear in the middle of the night when taking LizzieBelle out. Yep, just when we finally stopped looking for alligators in every body of water in Kentucky it’s time to keep an eye out once again.

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In between reno projects I’ve been cross stitching. I finished the second motif on the Christmas Bell Pull…

This one kicked my hind end. Maybe I was more tired than I thought when working on it because I think I ripped out as many stitches as I was able to leave. Anyway, it’s done and I love it! Two down,

… one to go. However, I will postpone starting on the third motif as I have been commissioned to crochet a gender neutral baby blanket. I’ll be going to Hobby Lobby this weekend to get the yarn I need and will begin work on it immediately. Stopping midway through a cross stitch piece is no problem but re-starting it is difficult for me so I’ll wait to start on it after I’m finished with the blanket. I usually like to have a couple projects going at one time but lately I’ve been focused on finishing up the many cross stitch pieces I inherited from my Mom. Ones that she had started and never finished as well as ones that I had started and put down for one reason or the other. Having limited space in a 30 foot travel trailer is also a catalyst for only doing one project at a time. At any rate, bit by bit these UFO’s (UnFinished Objects in quilting terminology) are getting worked on one stitch at a time and I’m never at a loss for something to do during the moments we have to chill.

So, that’s what we’ve been up to. Not a lot of chilling, definitely no traveling but we’re certainly enjoying the eats! Also, we are both well and thankful for a place to park until the gas prices become more reasonable. And, hopefully we’ll get some good news medically speaking. My next post should have some finished renovation projects for you and maybe even a finished baby blanket.

Stay happy and well my friends and thanks so much for reading!

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