Grandma

thehouseoftrue

thehouseoftrue

When you think of your grandma, how would you describe her? My Dad’s mom, who we all call Grandma, could be described as the quintessential Grandmother. Always smiling, eager for her great-grandchildren to dance, act silly and just be kids. Visiting her at her home is never a quiet visit. She loves her Price is Right on the loudest setting, and would think nothing of my kids hooting and hollering, laughing and jumping around. The rowdier the better time we all would have.

thehouseoftrue

thehouseoftrue

Growing up, my Dad and I would visit her and Grandpa almost every week. She taught me how to play Gin Rummy, make paper airplanes and hats. We would walk to the local drug store and buy candy or get ice cream at the local diner. Every now and then I would go to Saturday Mass with her, always sitting in the same pew. I cannot think of ever a time when she didn’t make me feel special or for that matter loved.

thehouseoftrue

thehouseoftrue

When I resigned from teaching, I was able to reconnect more with my family. Looking back now, it was a blessing and I would not change leaving my job for a second. I was able to bring Mr.S and Miss F and visit her more often and watch them make her smile and laugh. I now can look at all those pictures I snapped on those visits and see that every single one had her laughing and my kids rolling on the floor. Those are priceless moments forever captured. Moments in time.

thehouseoftrue

thehouseoftrue

I never fully appreciated or recognized how amazingly strong and loving my Grandma was until I became a mother. Life has a way of handing you devastation unexpectedly , and how you learn to process a new life through grief and try to find joy in a new way of living can be unbearable or impossible for many. A feat that no one ever wants to imagine facing. She did exactly that for most of her life after the loss of her beloved daughter. Every holiday, special family event, or any normal day, she showed us all love and happiness despite how deeply she missed and grieved her daughter. A lesson we can all follow in our lives when we sweat the small stuff.

Her love of her family showed in her requests for a quick picture at every visit. Her walls adorned with photos of her family.

Our Grandma passed away on August 16th at 91 years young. Exactly one month ago. I find myself putting on Price is Right at 11 weekdays, because I know that that is what she would have on if she were still here. As we celebrated her life on a warm beautiful cloudless sky a few weeks ago, I could not help but feel comforted knowing that she was with her daughter and Grandpa. I decided to make a conscious effort from then on to SMILE, LAUGH and CHERISH what I have just the way she lived every single day of her life.

thehouseoftrue

thehouseoftrue

I love you Grandma.

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Patio Perfection

Paradise Valley Custom Built Tuscan Home - Paradise Valley AZ Custom Luxury Home - Desert Star Construction
I have outdoor patios on my mind. Now that we are enjoying Phase One of our outdoor area, I have started to think about what I would want the finished area to look like. Because our area is sunken in, we almost feel like we are hidden from the world. Tuscany comes to mind, even though I have never been there. Here are some shots of patios that I liked.
How to Plant Evergreens in Containers--> http://www.hgtv.com/gardening/how-to-plant-evergreens-in-containers/index.html?soc=pinterest
like an imported tuscan villa...
Italian patio furniture from Vittorio Bonacina
Italian Vacation Home by designers Ludovica and Roberto Palomba | Featured on Sharedesign.com
can this please be our backyard? Garden Studio: A Modern Farmhouse

So many ideas. I cannot wait for Phase Two!

Railings

The next phase outside will be the porch railings for the back porch. I have an idea which way I want to go. We need to take into consideration the salt in the air that will eat at any materials, so I am looking at other less traditional options.

Curb Appeal - Upgrade railings  Porch and stoop railings can deteriorate quickly if not treated properly. If your railings are past their prime, look for quality wood or metal components to replace the existing material. As with other improvements attached directly to the house, make sure the color, scale, design, details, and material are compatible with the home's main features.
I love this look. Very traditional but clean lines as well.
Deck and porch railing design. Austin Patterson Disston Architects | Flickr - Photo Sharing!
The intricate details on this porch are amazing.
Atlantis Rail - Cable Railing, Cable Rail, Cable Railings, Stainless Steel Cable, Stainless Cable, Deck Railings
The one above will most likely be the one we will go with for the outside porch. I like that from afar you will not be able to see the stainless steel. I also like the idea of how it will be a twist on the overall look to the farmhouse – Greek Federal inspired home that we have.
Deck Railing idea
So many ideas to work with.

Fencing

We are in the process of adding privacy fencing to our backyard. We really had no choice in the matter. With the dogs and the kids, it will be nice to have everyone secured. The new build is in an established street in a seaside town. All the homes are very close together, which I really enjoy. But with that, privacy is also factored into the fence decision.

We went with a white vinyl fence. The fence that was already there when the land was purchased will remain. It will be power washed and painted white to fit in with new one.

Here are some fences that caught my eye. I would have loved a very dark grey one, but it was out of the budget.

Foto's van diverse aangelegde tuinen - Martin Veltkamp Tuinen
grey fence
Instead with all the white, and having a white house too, I am going to break it up with black mulch and boxwoods. The black mulch will tie in nicely with the three black garage doors.
The never-ending list of projects.

Land of the Green

I miss my lawn. We have been living with the after effects of the construction and mud surrounds us everywhere. I cannot wait to plant grass. It isn’t a big yard this time around. Manageable and enough for the kids and dogs to run around barefoot. Eventually.

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HOW TO; Overseed your lawn for a Healthy Green Lawn!
Secret Lawn Tonic Recipe:  After this summer, we need all the lawn tips we can get!
Simple grass. I wish it was that simple. We still need to level off the yard and fill in some places. Rake it out and seed. But every day is a step closer to the finish line.