Sunday, December 15, 2013

Family Photo Shoot

I keep thinking that I am going to upload the pictures of our house that is now pretty much done as far as "phase one" goes, but I have to use Ken's work computer because mine is still sitting on the shelf collecting dust as I have yet to take it to be fixed and this mac cannot read my android phone pictures.  I just haven't gotten around to snagging his computer for a few minutes in the evening.  (He is on it often...)  We had a little holiday party here this weekend, which has been consuming for awhile trying to get those last couple of things done (the wood counter top, hand painting where taping did not work whatsoever, etc.)  So those "after" pictures of our remodel that you have been anxiously awaiting will hopefully be coming shortly.  In the meantime, here are some pictures from our family photo shoot a few weeks ago.  They were taken in our backyard.  If you get a Christmas card from me these are the same pictures... I have been so pleased with our photographer, who is an old neighbor of ours.  Too bad this year of pictures (new born, 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, and 1 year) were a gift for Scarlet.  I don't know that I will be able to afford them for any future kids.  I guess I will just enjoy what I got!

This one is my favorite


Just makes me laugh...
p.s. It was purely coincidental that Scarlet and I were wearing the same outfits in these pictures as we were wearing on Thanksgiving/her birthday celebration that were in my last post.  Obviously these are favorite outfits.  Doing the best I can at dressing our truth for me and the little miss.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Big girl birthday pants

Even though every mother says it, I feel the need to say it too...I can't believe my baby is already 1!  We celebrated her birthday on Wednesday with Grandma and Grandpa Morgan via Skype and again on Thursday with Grandma and Grandpa Johnson at their house in conjunction with Thanksgiving.  I didn't take very good photos on either occasion but fortunately, Scarlet has an Aunt who is a photographer who was at Thanksgiving with us so we actually have some decent pictures from her birthday celebration.  We did get family photos taken a couple of weeks ago so those will be coming shortly.

The title of this post means nothing other than I can't believe how big she is getting.  Crawling around like crazy and scooting along the furniture, not quite steady enough yet to take the first steps on her own and just two little teeth but she is saying several words and she is so smiley!  She gets tons of attention still in grocery stores and she is a distraction to people around us at church because everyone wants to watch her.  We are so grateful that she is part of our family.

Enjoy the photos!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Phone Scare and a Sneak Peek

I had one of those horribly pouty afternoons today because I thought I had lost my phone while on vacation.  I knew that I had it in the early morning when I went for a walk and I did not take it with me when we went swimming in the late morning (warm springs pool) but what happened in the meantime? No clue.  I searched everywhere, retraced my steps, left my name and number with lost and found etc, etc.  We packed up and went home, with me feeling sorry for myself the whole way because I would lose all of my phone numbers, and more importantly, all of my photos.  But, as you can guess, when I got home and dumped out our clothing bag, there it was, buried underneath all of Ken's clothes.  I hate it when I am pouty for no reason!  I am just grateful to have all of my pictures still.

Since I am more motivated now to get my pictures saved I am going to go ahead and give you a sneak peek of all the goings on at the Johnson's house these days.  (Still not living there, but it is our house!)  As I mentioned in the previous post, a lot of the demolition was done by Ken and ME.  Most of the construction has been done by my dad who came up from Medford 4 times in a 7 week period.  What a great dad I have!


The wall with the sink:

Plumber doing his thing
Ken has since put a patch over that big whole but I don't have a picture.  Cabinets are scheduled to be installed a week from Monday.

Wall between kitchen and dining room:

Before (doorway had a swinging door)
My dad putting in the new beam
The beam now has drywall and paint primer on it but I don't have a picture of that.

The wall with a covered chimney, old pantry, and stairs leading to the basement.
Demolition (This was actually our first demo project and I was actually helping, I just stopped to take a picture.)
My mom helping remove the plaster from the chimney.
You can see in the picture above the wall next to the chimney.  That is drywall that my dad put in. It now has paint primer on it too.  I forgot to take before picture of removing the vinyl flooring but you see it here in this picture.  I've pulled up all of those squares from the floor using my blow dryer to soften the sticky backing and a floor paint scraper to peel them up.  Our hardwood floors are scheduled to be sanded and refinished this week.


This one takes a little more explanation.  Our fixing up the house is actually a two phase project.  We are doing the kitchen and added in a laundry closet, but we will eventually be putting an addition onto the house.  The location of our laundry the middle of Scarlet's in preparation for our future addition.

Before (blue tape outlining where to build the closet)

This was actually the first major project that we worked on.  It was a little bit nerve racking to have my dad cut out part of the old moulding and then put nails in the floor.  Once that was done then we knew there was no turning back!
Insulation for the laundry closet.  Notice the electric and plumbing.
Those two walls now have drywall and paint primer on them.  I will just be hanging a rod with a cloth shower curtain in front of the washer and dryer once we have them installed.  I don't want to put any type of door on the closet because it is temporary.  Where the wall ends on the right of the photo we will eventually add to it so that it meets the existing wall to the right turning my laundry closet into a laundry room.  Behind it will be a hallway leading out to the addition onto the house, which will be accessed through the kitchen (we will knock out another wall.)  On the other side of the other wall (the one with the dryer vent) we will eventually have a half bathroom. We've already done the plumbing for it.  Below is a picture of a sketch (which I have since lost!) of our plans for the addition.
Not the final plans but I hope it helps explain what I was trying to describe.

  Odds and Ends
Right tub handle "before" Left tub handle "After"

Before (Bathroom floor, which won't be replaced yet.)
Alright, I think I am ready to be done with this post for now. Between working at the house all day almost every day and then going on "vacation" where I hardly got any sleep because Scarlet didn't sleep well I am completely exhausted.  A couple of cute pics of the little miss and that is it for me.  Can't wait to show you the after pictures in a few more weeks!!

Lounging and enjoying her favorite part of the banana...the peel.
She has learned to pull herself to standing and she loves to do it anywhere and everywhere.
At the paint store.
In her stroller.
Under our make-shift dining room table.
She LOVES her daddy. And he ADORES her. (Foreground, fire pit that Ken built.)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Still Here!

Just checking in.  We are still here!  It's been crazy around here lately with remodeling our new-to-us-old house.  What we thought would be a few simple changes before we moved in has turned out to be a lot more involved than we had hoped for so we still aren't even living there yet.  The biggest issue was trying to figure out where to put our washer and dryer.  The previous owners had the laundry in the basement.  Unfortunately, they had just put a big hole in the corner and let the gray water run out through there into what is called a "dry well," which is essentially a big hole in the ground filled with gravel.  That is slightly illegal.  We had hoped to put in a sump pump to remove the waste to our septic tank, but unfortunately, the ceiling in our basement is only 6' 9" and has to be at least 7" in order to qualify as legal living space.  Our attic was also too short.  So we looked into building a mud room out of our back porch but that was going to be a lot of money for very little space.  It took several weeks of talking to the county permitting office, talking to my dad, meeting with designers, and just figuring out what we want now and what we want long term before we could make a final decision and actually start working on the house (which is why almost two months after purchase we still haven't moved in.)  In the end we opted to do a two phase remodel/addition.  For now we are updating the kitchen and adding in a "laundry closet" in Scarlet's bedroom.  That space (which is her bedroom) will eventually be turned into a half bathroom, a laundry room, and a hallway leading from the kitchen out to an addition.  But that will be phase two.  Even though we have to wait for the addition it is still super exciting to see the changes happening. 

Unfortunately, I am not using a computer that I can upload photos so I can't even tantalize you with any of the before and after pictures that we have thus far. 
                               But I can tell you what Ken and I have done with our own hands:

-Ken built a new trail in our backyard.
-I have done lots of scrubbing with a pumice stone (tub, bathroom sink, toilet and would have done the kitchen sink to but we are replacing it anyway.)
-I started to mop the wood floors until I realized that I need to mop over one spot 5 times before it is actually clean (decades of grime built up.) 
-I put in new blinds for a couple of windows. (I even used a power tool...)
-I vacuumed out the cobwebs in the basement.
-Ken built part of a bridge to go over a stream in the backyard (with help from family and friends.)
-Ken put up posts to build a wire fence (with help from family and friends.)
-Ken removed the corroded fire pit and built a new fire ring out of brick from free craigslist.
-Ken and I removed the kitchen cabinets (only the upper cabinets so far but all will be coming out.)
-I removed a door to a closet so that it would no longer be a closet and we can have our electric panel in there.
-Ken and I knocked out the old kitchen pantry. (Future location of our fridge instead of having it in the dining room like the previous owner did.)
-Ken and I knocked out the wall between the kitchen and dining room, (with help from my Dad too.)
-I removed the plaster that was covering a chimney in the kitchen (with the help of my mom too.)  It is just for aesthetics.
-I washed the kitchen ceiling today, which had a lovely film of grease and dust all over.
-(Not my hands but...) I have an awesome friend who helped me clean out all of our nasty window sills and then my mom helped me wash all of the windows and screens.  (That may not seem like much but it was several hours of work.)

      This is what we have paid (or will be paying when the bill comes due) to have done so far:

-Two walls for a laundry closet (framing, insulation, drywall.)
-Bathroom tub leaks fixed.
-Bathroom sink leak fixed.
-Water main leak fixed.
-Plumbing for the laundry.
-Plumbing for a future half bathroom.
-Electric for laundry.
-Electric for future half bathroom.
-All electric re-wired (still had a lot of knob and tube old school stuff.)
-Electric panel moved from outside to inside.
-Additional outlets in every room.
-New ceiling lights in every room.
-Additional lights in the basement.
-Floor and ceiling where the old pantry was removed (for some unknown reason the pantry never had a real ceiling or real floor.)
-Load bearing beam installed where the wall between the kitchen and dining room was removed.

So that pretty much brings us up to date on what has been done so far.  This weekend we are hoping to have my dad back up to do the drywall on the new beam between the kitchen and dining room and possibly convert our bedroom closet from a single to a double door.  Hopefully we will be getting new kitchen cabinets in a few weeks.  And I better stop there on what is coming next because the list could go on and on and on and on and on.

Since the project kept getting bigger and bigger as we looked into our options we decided to stick out a bit longer at our friends house in order to not be living in the mess (even though I am pretty much there all day long everyday anyway so it sort of feels like living in a mess.)  I've been telling people for several weeks that we would be moving in within a week or two but that hasn't happened yet so I really have no idea when it will actually be at this point.  Hopefully soon..

Friday, July 19, 2013


Ok, so here's my excuse, in early June we had to move out of the house that we were living in and at the same time we were trying to buy a house that we thought we would be closing on in April but didn't get until mid-July (one week ago today.)  We have been living with friends since then.  The other half of my excuse is that my computer has not been functioning properly and moves at about the pace of a slug these days.  Need to have someone look at it but haven't gotten around to that yet.  Ken's computer won't read my phone to download pictures and it took me awhile to figure out that I could use his work laptop without downloading all of my pictures onto the computer.  SO. Here we go.  Picture dump.

Scarlet with Daddy at our old house.
Playing in a jumper on a friend's front porch.  She was still too short for it so we put a dictionary under her feet.
Oregon fans.  Can you tell?
Playing with friend Emma.
Investigating a purse.  I LOVE how she has her little hand on her thigh. (This is at the house we are staying at temporarily.)
Playing with Emma again.  This time Emma decided to crawl over and sit on Scarlet.
Giving her kisses.
Scarlet's first self-portrait.
Scarlet's first ponytail.
Did great her first time in a pool.  Likes the water but not getting splashed.
In the backyard at our new house.  I won't be posting more pictures of the house yet because I want to do before and after photos.
She doesn't take a pacifier for calming but she sure likes to chew on them.  No sign of teeth yet though.
Fun at a nearby park.
So flexible that she got her foot caught in the teether toy attached to the handle of her car seat!
I just like this one.

Well, hope you enjoyed the photo update. She is sitting up really well.  Stands strong, with help of course.  No sign of teeth yet.  Loves to eat solid foods.  Not picky at all really.  Still sleeps good.  LOVES cats.  And dogs. Very social.  Very smiley.  I love this little girl so much!  Sometimes I can't believe she is really mine!