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Before and after – the evolution of our property

We bought our cute little cottage-like house in Port Orchard, Washington last October.  Her insides were perfect and needed no updating, but the outside was in desperate need of some love.  Seven months later, the work is 95% complete and I am so happy with the outcome. I’m more in love with my cute little quarter-acre of solitude than ever.  So – some before and afters shots below!

Continue reading “Before and after – the evolution of our property”

Home

DIY – Getting rid of that ugly dining room table

My dining room table is an object to both love and despise.  It’s a bar height table, which makes it an easy workspace as well.  It’s sturdy. It’s still in great condition.  And it is uuuuuuuuuuugly.  I don’t know what I was thinking when I bought it, but I have faux marble.  Yuck, yuck, Y-U-C-K.

See this fake marble??  It’s gotta go.  Continue reading “DIY – Getting rid of that ugly dining room table”

Family

You can go home again, but maybe you shouldn’t…

Have you ever had one of those experiences that really just defy words? At least, right away? I went home to Indiana for a week and only recently got back to Washington, and I’ve been trying to wrap my head around my trip. I discovered something pretty profound, at least to me: they say you can’t go home again, but I don’t believe that’s true. You can, but that doesn’t mean it’s going to feel like home anymore.

We moved from Indianapolis to Seattle last August. Last September, my parents moved out of the house they’d lived in for 29 years. When I headed to their house after arriving at the Indianapolis airport, I was driving to an unfamiliar house in a town I’d never been in. There was no “going home.” In fact, home was gone.

Continue reading “You can go home again, but maybe you shouldn’t…”

About me, Family, Holidays, Home

Christmas trees, musicals, and making a community

I’m taking a break from dinner preparations to get this post up.  I’m having a “Transplant to Seattle” Thanksgiving dinner today at my house, and I’m hosting a few of my co-workers and their spouses who also uprooted their lives this year and moved out here to join our team.  Being two thousand miles from home means that, if we let ourselves, we can become very insulated out here.  With no family and no “community” to speak of, it would be very easy to say that we live here, but do we live here?   Continue reading “Christmas trees, musicals, and making a community”

About me, Holidays, Home, Obsessions, Reflection, The farmgirl life

The heart of a farmgirl…

The holiday season, for some reason, makes me long to spend time in farm supply stores.

Now, you probably just cocked your head to one side like a confused canine as you stared at these words on your screen, so let me explain.

Continue reading “The heart of a farmgirl…”

About me, Family, Holidays, Home, Obsessions

Working, shopping, and planning for the future

First there’s the working:

So I’ve been working my behind off.  Even when I’m not on site, I’m still working via my laptop/VPN or answering emails on my phone.  This has left me feeling drained, and what better way to lift my spirits than through retail therapy?

Continue reading “Working, shopping, and planning for the future”

About me, Books, Obsessions, The farmgirl life

Getting to know me – again

So back in 2003, I discovered MaryJanesFarm.  I stumbled upon the magazine at a Walmart in my hometown, bought it, and was hooked.  I still remember flipping through that issue, my heart in my throat over the gorgeous pictures and stories MaryJane shared in her magazine.

May 10, 2004 I joined the message boards on the website and began to talk to a lot of really great women.  Eventually, I got to meet MaryJane Butters herself when she went on a book tour and stopped at Franny’s amazing cabin in the hills of Kentucky.  This picture below, which I took about two years ago, shows how my obsession/collection had grown:

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERABack in 2009, though, I started to pull away from the crafty/organic person that I was and started writing a lot.  And the problem when you write fanfiction is that you get sucked into a fandom and it takes over your whole life, which is what happened to me.  I walked away from the fandom about a year ago but only recently found my way back to MaryJanesFarm.  I’ve still subscribed to the magazine all this time, of course, but I wasn’t the same person anymore.  And frankly, this new me, the “Vintage 2009” version of Rachel – I didn’t like her much.

So now I’m reconnecting with the crafty/organic woman who dreams of owning her own tiny farm.   Now, though, I have visions of my farm being surrounded by the evergreens of the Pacific Northwest because every trip to Seattle just confirms that it feels like home out there.  But yesterday, I logged back into the MaryJanesFarm message boards for the first time in forrrrever.  Imagine my surprise when I clicked on my profile and discovered that I had joined exactly nine years ago, to the day!

This weekend, I’m going through all my craft supplies and fabrics and yarns and threads.  It was so great to open up a tub and see it filled with beautiful prints!

photo (1)And imagine my surprise when I opened up a second tub and found all the folkart dolls I used to make.  How did I forget that I made these?  I used to sell them at craft fairs!  I still have tons of them and I need to do something with them – maybe I’ll give them away?

photoAnyway, I’m having fun reconnecting with the gal I once was.  With some time and effort, I hope to become her again. She wore skirts a lot and made quilts and went to church regularly.  (The only addition is that she now writes regularly, too.  She’s working on a novel, dangit!) She wasn’t a bad person to be.