Our Retro Bungalow

Our Retro Bungalow
The journal of the making of an old house into a lovely new home.

Sunday, September 27, 2015


It's scarcely believable to me, but seven weeks have passed since I last posted.
The swiftness of time, I'm convinced, is the result of three factors:
1) Age. Our age, to be precise. The older Mr & Me get, the more time seems to quicken.
2) Busyness. We've been busy. A busyness that is
quite different from the crazy-busy of our younger years when
we were caught up in the day-to-day duties of  bringing up our six young children.
3) We're living in the last days. The prophesied return of Jesus the Christ and
the beginning of His millennial reign is at its threshold. Now, don't go quotin' me on that one,
because I can't give you a specific scripture or citation from one of our latter-day
prophet's addresses stating that the passing of time is speeding up because
He will return ere long. This particular theory is my own, based on personal scripture study,
listening to general conference addresses, and podcasts by various religious scholars.
Combined, these reliable sources instill in me a feeling, perhaps even an instinct,
that His imminent return is hastening time. Or maybe it is merely anticipation;
much like an exam that you worry you may not be fully prepared for as it approaches
seemingly much sooner later. I used to fear the last days. Not any more.
And that, right there, is one of thee most beautiful aspects of leaving youth behind.
Courage is a priceless byproduct of age and wisdom.

Now, then.
If you'll kindly pardon my digression, I'll attempt to carry forth, in no particular (chronological)
order with some of the most recent happenings around here.
It will be, I'm afraid, a bit of a hit-n-miss attempt
as I am certain there are several things I will either forget to include
or choose to pass over altogether in the interest of time.

We've started applying the second coat of "Tate Olive" on the exterior
and we are both still smitten with the color.
The second coat seems to take less time than the first, but still I haven't made
a whole lot of progress as there are so many other things vying for my attention.

We finally ordered our rain chains and got them hung.
And we LOVE them.
Before clicking "submit order", Dean asked me if I was sure I wanted the
double ring design in copper.
"I'm positive!"
So, he bought them.
They arrived a few days later and as I watched him up on the ladder getting them hung
 in their reserved spots on the rain gutter, I was struck with the reality of my choice.
WHAT was I thinking?!
Copper fetches a hefty pocketful of cash at the local recycling yards.
Will these somewhat spendy ornamentations disappear from the front
 of Retro Bungalow one day when we aren't looking.
There's no sense in losing sleep over it now.
We can only hope for the best.

I'm delighted that they've already begun to take on a patina.
Also in this photo, notice the front porch ceiling -
it's different from the rest of the board-and-bat ceiling of  the rest of the porch that
runs along the front of the south end of the house.
That's because the front porch ceiling is salvaged tongue and groove from
the original front porch of the original house!
I don't know about you, but we think that's pretty special.

I took advantage of a great sale at Lomond View Nursery
and bought the first two of several trees we have in mind to
welcome to our landscaping plans.
Fall planting is best and 30% off saved us a nice little sum.
A Bosnian Pine at the SW corner of the garage and
 a Bloodgood Japanese Maple next to the newly poured party patio.
These varieties are ones we'd chosen and planted at Casa di Mossi.
We liked them so much that we've been planning all along to incorporate them here.
It was a happy thing to not only get them on sale, but to actually find them
among their inventory so late in the year.

Speaking of the new party patio...

we hosted our first official party on it yesterday afternoon to
celebrate our son-in-law, Joe's, 30th birthday!
His lovely wife, Mrs Brunty, planned and organized it.
And, just like her mother, she fretted about there being enough eats
for all the guests that were invited. There was a nice turnout and we ended up with
lots of  left overs. No complaints, though, because ain't none of us gonna need to do
any shopping or cooking for the next week.

And speaking of leftovers...
the leftover balloons are the perfect representation of how spent, tired, and done
Mr & Me felt last night when we finally crawled into bed after an exhausting week.
We're still recovering today.
In fact, we got a text a little while ago from Mr & Mrs Mossi-the-youngest
asking if we'd like to go to their place for games and cookies tonight.
Another night, kids.
Despite being so drained, we didn't exactly have a sound sleep because
plastic on our front entry
and plastic on our back entry
was the only thing between us and the outdoors all through the night.

In addition to partying and preparing to party,
we painted our exterior doors.
The ionization process for deep red paint takes 24 hours,
so we had to wait til today to rehang them.
The good news is my color choice,
Ben Moore's "Country Redwood" turned out
to be FANTASTIC, if I do say so myself.

We also hauled our crown molding out, set it up on saw horses and
got it primed and painted yesterday.

It's neatly stacked in the garage now with layers of tarp in between so it
won't stick together while it waits to be installed in a few weeks.

I've been busy in the kitchen puttin' up summer's bounty.

All my efforts, along with the steam and pressure canners, are still
on display atop the counters. We've been cutting, painting, building and installing
storage shelves in the utility room downstairs. We'll get that finished up in the next couple of days.
I can hardly wait because the basement looks as if a cyclone hit
what with all our storage items stacked everywhere down there.

One last thing...
Meaningful decor:
For quite some time I'd had the thought that I wanted to display photos of
our beloved grandparents homes.
We have so many deeply cherished memories
of those old places.
I guess you could say that they are sacred to us in a very personal way.
I found a window type frame that, with a few minor adjustments, I thought would be perfect.
 I bought the frame and set about creating a memorial of sorts.
What I ended up concocting was a hideous monster!
every time I walked by it I winced.
It was that bad.
I'll never, ever pretend to be a crafter again.
It had to be put out of my misery.
One afternoon, when I just knew I couldn't not deal with the grotesqueness
 of my Frankenstein any longer,
I swiped it from its place on the wall just inside the back door.
As I did so, the thought popped into my crazy brain that I should call 911 and
have the beast rushed to the nearest trauma center for help.
Or there was always our old shotgun.
Putting it out of my misery would've made our eldest son proud.
And he'd have gotten a good laugh out of it too.
Reason took the reigns and I drove it to the frame shoppe at
Bennion Crafts. With great trepidation, I sheepishly presented the atrocity to a new employee,
a young woman I hadn't worked with previously, and asked to see the mat samples.
I chose a gray-green mat and left her to work a miracle.
She phoned only a few hours later to tell me it was already ready to be picked up.
I was relieved and delighted with the result.
It's now hanging much more proudly in its spot on the wall just inside the back door.
It was only this afternoon that I asked Dean to attach the old glass knobs
from my Great-Granny Burke's farmhouse kitchen onto it.
It's wonderful, isn't it!
That's it for now.
Thank you for stoppin' in.
Good night and God bless.