Working around the house


Kaylee asked for her room to lose the little girl Hello Kitty. So out of about 20 selections on comforters, she picked out one. After that, the colors were matched at our local Home Depot, her room was repainted. All the pink flowers are gone, the pink trimmed everything and Hello Kitty accessories are all out of there. She got to be surprised as all she knew was the comforter. She loves it.

Wow, we have kids.. so no home projects for the past two years other than maintnance. Finally, June 09 we made good on the threat to re-do the front entryway tile and chose slate. We love the slate, and have plans to expand to the entire lower floor.. soon, like 2012. :)

 June 2009 Michele and Candice managed to patch and paint the play room, very light pink and purple



March 2013 - the start of our deck. Yes, I know its just a four board bench, but we have to start somewhere. We are thinking if perhaps we water it....

Early Spring 2013 (Feb/March)- Okay so its still winter. We removed our front lawn and made it a garden park and walkway. We planted a large selection of items and I am noting them here for my future reference and followup.   Havent you ever thought "what was that herb that I planted that did so well, or did I try that before?"  Well here we are with the power of the internet and a few moments in time and I can document it for all history.   
Produce: Flowers:
Fernleaf Dill
Sweet Basil
Flat Italian Parsley
Early Girl Tomato
Red Beefsteak Tomato
Swiss Chard (rainbow)
Romaine Lettuce
Bonnie Spinach
Mesclun Greens
Salad Bowl Lettuce
Pansy (of all sorts,  they are edible you know!)
Osteospermum White and Orange with violet centers
Persian Buttercup
Marguerite Daisy
Origama Columbine (perennial)
Double impatiens
Azalea (Alaska White)
Azalea (Pink)

Self fruitful dwarf cherry
Self fruitful Santa Rosa plum


In process:

Summer 2012- Create fence area for small chicks untill they grow big enough for the slope.  - CHECK-  Get cute little peepy chicks - CHECK

Summer 2012 - Chickens come to the suburban farm.  First thing first check with the neighbors.  Second, when replacing good neighbor fence, keep old wood. Lastly, build the chicken coop from leftover fence materials.

Spring 2011 - We created a trellis for growing some flowering vines below the master room deck, and outside the window of our living room. To create a nice green effect and keep light, we cut out a window in the trellis to match the window in the living room. We are anxious to see how this turns out.

Spring 2010 - The house is looking lovely in the front yard.

Making a Table for outside by the fire. All from "leftover" stuff in the garage. May 2010.font>

April 2007, the backyard pond has really taken shape. We have California native poppies and Michael has created a top and bottom pond with a waterfall and stream in between. It sits next to the spa, and is really nice to listen to and watch when relaxing in the spa. It also makes for a very nice view out the door of the kitchen.

pumpkin06/07 working on 2nd terrace addition. (Only two more to go after that!) Also, Michael has gotten into a friendly competition with Kelli to see who ends up growing the best pumpkin for carving on Halloween. Here is a July picture, and note that they both have been out babying their pumpkins with extra soft compost, plenty of water and miracle grow.

Early Spring 2006 - We (Michael) redesigned the front flowerbed, removing the concrete and opting for a more natural stone formation to separate the flowerbed and the lawn. The flowers up front are mostly from bulbs and annuals that made it through the winter.

March 2005, The poppies are blooming. We keep seeding the slope in our backyard and its working. Its working slowly, but its working. The fruit trees, flowers and asparagus will probably be where they should be in another year or so. We planted a 3 way cherry tree which has "Van", "Black Tartarian" and "Bing" cherries all on the same tree. We also planted a 4 way peach tree, which included two white peach types!  

SMORES!! How can you beat a nice fire and gooey treats on a cold October night? Thanks to Michael for building the fire, and thanks to Tammy and John for the fire-pit. What a neat addition to our backyard fun. (Yes, the fire pit is now right outside our sliding door from the living room, makes those camp-outs pretty easy and comfortable.)

June pond close-up. There are actually blue-gill fish in the pond. Fat little fish at that. We got them from Candice's Grandmothers pond in Granite Bay months ago, and they have been enjoying the easy life ever since. No large mouth bass in this pond to hide from.

May of 2004, you can see the willow and the grasses over around the pond have really taken off. Yet, it is still a work in progress. We plan some sort of seating area out over the slope in the circular space, but haven't gotten to what goes there yet. We are thinking perhaps a built in fire pit for the cooler fall evenings, or perhaps just a iron bistro table for enjoying the view.

  This is an update of the side of the house planting. Two years in development (May 2004) you can really see that the ferns in the back (which is actually toward the front of the house) are doing very well. They are now hiding the side view of the Camellias that show their gorgeous blooms through the window of the front room. The tree in the front yard provides a nice bit of shade, and this fall we will be seeding for edible mushrooms and backfilling with some more shade loving plants as the trees continue to develop.

Mothers day 2004 brought Candice a new herb garden right outside the sliding glass door to the kitchen. You can see it from the sink and it is planted with garlic, cilantro, basil, oregano, thyme, rosemary, horseradish and of course, catnip. Hi Lilly.  


September we started a pond project. Its going to be a freeform pond and stream/waterfall. This is what it looks like in October 2002.  Perhaps we can even drop a level or two down the hillside.   We will see how far the dogs and kids let us get.

We (Michael) put in a fern/shade garden in the once unused portion of the yard on the side of the house. We plan to try planting mushrooms there once the plants are established. The original work was done in May 2002, more pictures to follow with the current views.

January 2008 - Watch out! Bathroom tile may be coming our way soon. We happened upon some cool tile by the way of our friends needing to find a home for it. (THANKS GUYS!!) So, now we have some cool tile and a fun new project to tackle soon. It may go out to part of the combined master suite/master bath too.

April 2007 - We decided, with Kaylee's input that her room would be better served if we could get her bed off the ground. We built and painted a custom full size bed, stairs inclusive. It has a light underneath for working at her desk, and her TV was moved up to the corner of the room on a swivel stand so she, and of course Kyle and McKenna too, can watch movies while resting in bed.

January 2007 - Out with the white walls! In a bold move, we decided the glare on the TV was just unacceptable any longer and hit home depot for some dark paint. Very dark.. we were unsure when the paint first went on the wall, as it was quite dark, but the other complementary colors that went into the kitchen, den and around the rest of the living room really tied things together. The next step is a new couch and new fireplace facia/mantle to include black marble or granite.

October 2006. So, well.... its been a few weeks, but I finally got back to finishing the master bathroom. I had to order the pictures, and go get more frames, and wait till the girls were otherwise occupied. The bathroom is finished, complete with pictures of some of our memorable excursions, and unique experiences. Yes, that does include pictures of the girls.

August 2006, While most of the family was visiting Mark and Cindy in Seattle WA, Candice stayed home for some appointments and managed to repaint the master bathroom. The room started as an outdoor feel, with a three toned blue wall with sunflowers, to a clouds with silver lining ceiling. Now, it is 'pony tail' color to match the master bedroom, with a makeover on the decorations to include photos of our family and adventures and a new frosted covering on the window that faces the neighbor. Summer 2006 - Time to install some steps from the top level of the backyard, and down to the second terrace.   April 2006. Michael took advantage of me being gone to surprise me with an awesome birthday present. He and Kaylee, with the help of Michele and entire family Kimpel, completely re-did our master bedroom. New paint, crown molding, decoration and new bedding. The colors are nice and warm and natural, and needless to say I was quite surprised. I even got a place on the wall for my claymore again. Here is another picture

March 2006. We decided it was time to move the playroom to upstairs. The girls now can have their area to play and express themselves and not worry about what it looks like when people walk in the house. We called in James help to move the barn and furniture and switched the rooms around. They like the playroom upstairs also because they use the windows to look out for when their friends are playing outside on the block. We like it because the toys stay much more contained.

July 2005. Michele has now taken on the duty of telling us what she likes in her room. Its purple butterflies, with a smattering of fairies and some garden flowers. We are working on getting some butterflies and such for decoration, but its the beginning of the theme.  

Ack!! Pink and flowers. Yes, much to my dismay, I, Candice, painted Kaylee's room with pink flowers. She had a left over Star Wars theme from the days when the room was my second 'bachelor' den. She let me know a few months ago that she would prefer something pink, so Hello Kitty here we are. We also painted a pink measuring area on her wall, so we can mark her name and age as she grows on her bedroom wall. Okay, everyone together now "Aww, how cute." - Okay, now that's enough.

June 2004 Project. - The toys finally overran the front play room and we needed to figure out a way to contain them. Ta Da! The Toy Barn!  

See what happens when you have a need and a home depot card?

2003 Kaylee's room is also becoming more her personality. We let her pick items when we go to the home stores (Bed Bath Beyond etc) and YES, that is a 3 foot tall stuffed soccer ball on her bed. What can we say, she picked it and carried it through the store.

With much thanks to Grandma Cris, Michele's room is coming together nicely (May 2003).

Her furniture is light wood, and you can not see much of the pattern here, but there are flowers in watercolor as accents on the wood. Also, if you look really close, you can see Michele watching Iron Chef on her TV. hehehe...

May 2003, we decorate the girls bathroom. Can we say Partridge Family Bus?? ~~Come on get happy~~ It was fun and both of the girls like the colors and the dogs and cats all over the walls and accessories. Its Alice in wonderland meets Austin Powers. It looks better in person... and from a 3" high view, trust me.