We’re in!

Hello friends (and family) ;-)!  The huge delay in posting on the blog means…… we have moved in!  Yay!  Time to unpack!  Boo!  Actually, very excited to unpack FINALLY after having much of our “stuff” boxed up for the six months we were in a rental house.  The delay is also due to the fact that we do not have internet or tv at our new house-we have been in for over 10 days.  10 days no tv/internet + 4 males in the house (2 teenagers) = 5 Unhappy Campers.  Oh well, we sure have been knocking the projects off the list each evening without internet or tv to distract us ;-).  #silverlining

I have a few really dark and unimpressive pictures for you.  Sorry, I haven’t been home much during the daylight hours since we moved to get some well-lit pics but promise to do that this weekend.  For now, here are a few of the kitchen.
img_20161201_212646 img_20161201_212636 img_20161201_212632

Yes, those are sticky notes on the cabinet doors ;-).  My awesome mom and sister helped us move in and set up my kitchen for me.  I quickly jotted down the desired contents of each cabinet/drawer on a sticky note and placed them so they could unpack away while I was directing traffic elsewhere.  #movingischaos  #neveragain  Also, our plumber still has a few faucets to install and the kitchen island faucet is one of them.  For now, we have a faucet in a box sitting on our island.  I hope the kids don’t get used to using the big sink to make their lemonaide because the sink directly in front of the refrigerator is for that purpose ;-)!  It will also be handy for filling the coffee pot in the morning (our microwave, toaster and coffee pot are behind those two large pocket doors to the right of the fridge–breakfast central!).  img_20161201_212709I was a bit disappointed that the open shelving was installed so high above the counter top.  However, if we were going to fix or change anything, that is totally the easiest thing to fix as my husband can shift those down about 12″ or so by just drilling new holes for the brackets and then I will fix the old bracket holes–not very labor intensive.  My hope for the bottom shelf of the open shelves was for everyday dishes and glasses and in real life it is working out great other than the fact that it is hard for our youngest to reach.  We’ll get that situation rectified very soon–right after we get tv & internet installed,  bathroom mirrors hung, closets organized and boxes in the basement organized…..  Hmmmm, maybe that won’t happen so soon after all ;-).

Our youngest couldn’t wait to try out our new stove so here he is on Monday morning–day #2 in the new house–making himself eggs and ham for breakfast before school!  Notice the boxes of wine on the far left because, hello, priorities ;-)–we need to relieve the stress somehow–we just moved, people!img_20161128_071234

Here is a dark and blurry picture of our master bathroom sink cabinet I quickly snapped this morning with mirrors propped against the wall.  I am not 100% sure about whether or not I am painting the frames and wanted to decide before we hung them.  I got the mirrors at a hotel resale store in Michigan–actually my parents picked them up for me as I didn’t decide until we had left the country that I wanted them after all – thanks Mom & Dad ;-).  Unfortunately the mirrors were too big for the main bathroom but they will work just fine in the master. img_20161206_070832

Can’t wait to get some better lit photos for you real soon and then I can do source lists as well for the hardware, faucets, lighting.  Stay tuned folks–we’re bound to get internet around here soon ;-)!

Last post I asked you to comment on what you thought our “special feature” in the kitchen was and my Aunt Karen was correct–a cutting board with a hole in it so compost can go directly into the compost bin.  Those contents will be for the enjoyment of our chickens when we are able to build a coop next spring and order some more baby chicks–can’t wait!  


We are still awaiting the hardware for the bottom door of this cabinet–the kitchen installers misplaced my knobs and handles when they came for the last install visit.  The missing hardware has been located and I am promised they are in the mail at this time.  I’ll get you an updated post about this handy little feature just as soon as it is functional!

I love it that you stopped by today to check on our progress-don’t forget to subscribe to my blog (top right menu) for updates right in your inbox!

Thanks for stopping by and come again real soon!  ♥ Tina

Thoughts on gratefulness and renting…


It is Friday night, I am sore and very tired, but so very thankful at this moment. I only had to work at my job in the morning today and so was able to spend the afternoon at our new house sweeping and vacuuming up twenty-five pounds of drywall dust.  We are ready for paint, people!  The job was very dusty and tedious, but fun in a sort of “this-job-sucks-but-it-is-getting-me-closer-to-something-really-amazing” kind of way.hard work pays off

I have just finished a long, hot bath and hopefully have most of the dust out of my hair but I think I will be blowing the stuff out of my nose for the next week or so.  Guess I should have worn one of those mask thingies ;-).  Anyway, I am grateful to have such a productive afternoon, grateful for my long, hot bath, but especially grateful for my 17-year-0ld son who almost made me cry when he offered to take his younger brother to hockey practice after supper.  That was going to be my task for the evening and doesn’t really sound all that bad, does it?  However, his practice is located where we are going to live once we move into our new house and that is currently over 35 minutes away.  So, 40 minute drive + be there 20 minutes early + 1 hour practice + 15 minutes to take off equipment and shower + 40 minute drive home = ALMOST THREE HOURS  added onto the end of a very tired mom’s day.  So yes, I did kiss my 17-year-old and yes, he did say “ewwww, Mom!!!”, and no, I don’t care that he pretends he doesn’t like it–I’m grateful.


I am also grateful we have somewhere to live while we are building–a rental house.  No, everyone does not have their own bedroom and the floor plan is not at all conducive to the way we live, and the fixtures and finishes in the house are not at all “my style”, but it works for us for now.

This particular situation has taught me something very important about myself, however.

  • We haven’t really unpacked from six months ago when we moved in.
  • I am using only essential items in the kitchen and bathrooms.
  • No art hangs on the walls except for a few things that, by happy accident, looked “ok” hanging on an existing nail or screw (there was no way I was going to be nailing things into the wall only to have to patch them up before we left).
  • We sold all of our “good” living room furniture before we moved and so we are using our destined for the dump “basement hang out” furniture in the living room until we move.
  • Many rooms have boxes along one wall or stacked in the corner awaiting MOVE #2.
  • The entire basement is full of labelled stacks of boxes awaiting MOVE #2.  (See my previous post with lots of moving tips.)

All of the reasons above add up to one really big realization about my personality or how God made me or whatever you want to call it: I NEED TO HAVE A VISUALLY PLEASING ENVIRONMENT TO COME HOME TO EACH NIGHT IN ORDER TO NURTURE MY FAMILY AND PRESERVE MY OWN MENTAL HEALTH!   There, I said it.  It sounds so selfish, right?  But it is just the way I am, now I know.  I like to have a pleasant, and calm, and settled-feeling house to live in with my family and our rental house is not that.

You may be thinking, “Well, they did live there for six months, why didn’t she put the effort in to make it look a bit more homey?”  My answer is, I did try.  My rules for OPERATION: MAKE RENTAL FEEL LIKE HOME were that 1.) I was not going to unpack any of my home decor boxes and 2.) I would embrace my inner minimalist.  That basically lasted for one month and then I broke down and went to IKEA to get a few plants & pots and colorful boxes to store some office supplies in–boxes can be used for MOVE #2, right?  However, that was just the home office area which is squeezed in along one wall of the dining room and all of the fun IKEA purchases still couldn’t compete with the large, gold chandelier theme we have going on in the rental house.  #stuckinthe90s

Well, here we are–three weeks away from MOVE #2 and it is already time for me to contemplate which items we will be bringing over to the basement in the new house first.  We made it–I am still sane–I am definitely grateful.  BUT… I sure can’t wait to spend my Christmas Break nesting in our new house.  #bestchristmasgiftever

Thanks for stopping by and come again real soon!   Tina

Moving – tips and tricks from a family of six!

moving Building House Making Home

Moving for our family of six is not what I would call fun, however, I do see the positives in it–moving is always a good exercise in decluttering and organizing ALL THE THINGS!  The first time we moved “with kids” was 10 years ago and it was what I would call a “fairly organized” move.  I was then running a home daycare and so could pack and organize in any little pockets of time that I found available throughout the day as I was home all day.  There are four moving tips that I used ten years ago and found that those same tricks are still just as valuable and time-saving ten years later–especially since our family is moving twice in six months with a full-time job for mom and four kids this time around.  #whatwerewethinking

color code move

#1.) COLOR CODE YOUR MOVE:  I used a color-coded system where I chose a color for each room in our new house, used corresponding colored construction paper squares to write the contents of each box and taped it to the side of the box.  I also wrote in sharpie on the top of each box the contents and what room it went in.  Then at the new house, I taped a large sheet of the colored construction paper to the doorway of each corresponding room and then anyone helping us move in would know where each colored box went.  I also taped the appropriate colored construction paper to furniture for each room and tied matching colored ribbon onto garbage bags that held pillows, bedding and other bulky items.  I plan to use the color coding strategy for this move as well – click here for a great blog post about a similar system.

#2.)  MAKE A MOVING BINDER:  Megan from The Homes I Have Made blog knows a thing or two about moving!   Married to a US Marine, her family is in their 6th home in 10 years!  Megan is a girl after my own heart as she has made resources that can organize your move into a military operation in itself and they are FREE!

smooth move binder kit


Megan’s moving binder is my number one moving tip (and it is super cute and did I mention free?)!  I made a binder of my own with her printables and loaded her moving spreadsheet onto my skydrive so I could keep everything at my fingertips and up-to-date both at work and at home during our last move.  Since we are currently living in a rental home while we build, we are staring down ANOTHER MOVE in the very near future–ugh!  However, this move will be so much more exciting as we will be moving into our newly built home–woot woot!


#3.)  LABEL THE SIDES OF THE BOXES:  Another one of my favorite moving tips is to make sure that you label the SIDES of the boxes.  Labeling the sides as well as box tops is important because when they are stacked on top of one another, it makes life so much easier. For six months we have been living in a rental house with a basement full of stacked boxes and if we have needed something that is packed, I could simply run down to the basement and do a quick scan of the sides of the boxes to find what I needed. That tip is a total life saver this time around for sure!


#4.) PACKING KIT/CADDY:    A packing kit/basket/caddy is super efficient and the best strategy for those of us who tend to get interrupted while packing (ahem, hello moms and wives who have to squeeze packing into already overstuffed days…) ;-).  Make sure you include scissors, packing tape sharpies, labels, {color coded labels, color key, paper and ribbon if you are color coding your move}, box cutter, and timer if you need to set one for extra motivation– “You can do anything for 15 minutes” ~ Flylady  ;-).

Here are a few of my other favorite moving Pins:


Hope the above tips and tricks help you if you plan to move in the near future! Oh, and one more share… this is my fave youtube video with moving tips from WhatsUpMoms (I am totally crushing on her “Book It!” t-shirt!!!):

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Thanks for stopping by and come again real soon!   Tina

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