Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Updated Pics!

New super modern birch wood longboard pendant lamp replaces the Arts & Crafts chandelier. Finally!

Big plants! Hops takes over the bench, and the castor bean reaches 8'.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Letters From The Past

Digging through a manilla folder the previous owner left in the house w/ all the pamphlets from all the appliances here (dishwasher, fridge, washer/dryer, A.C, etc) because the garage door is acting wacky. Tucked into a plastic zip lock bag I see a pencil written note on lined paper. Dated March 29th, 1992.

To Whom it May Concern,

Well, if you've found this it is quite possible that you are remodeling this house or this poor old place is falling down or being torn down~ God Forbid!

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is David _____. I am 33 years old, & this is my first house I ever purchased. My partner and lover of 5 years is K _____. I'm from, orginally, a small town north of here called Garner, Iowa & K is from Perry, Iowa, also just north. We've lived in this house for 3 years, Renting, prior to buying it. Rent was $450.00 monthly. I purchased this house from our landlord, Anna _____, our realtor was Ann _____. Both wonderful ladies.

I am a floral designer/salesperson for a company recently bought by the HyVee corp, known then as Floral Supply, now knows as Floral Distributors Inc. Kevin, age 38, works as a maintenance superintendent at ________.

When we first moved in here, the kitchen was Brown & Gold *icky* and the bathroom was equally as Bad. There was a window in the bathroom. Also, there was a large window currently where the fireplace is now. We purchased this house on March 16, 1991 with a down payment of $154.00 & at a cost of $35,000- a real steal nowadays (blogger comment HOLY CRAP I guess!!!)

During the time we've lived here up to now so much has happened. The Berlin Wall fell, an economic Recession is now underway AGAIN!, the Gulf War took place before our very eyes on television. And the communist government of the Soviet Union disbanded or fell apart, whichever you prefer~.

We have had many spiritual groups meet here, Metaphysics is our belief~ that is that God is everywhere & that we have the power to manifest into being anything we put our minds to. Many powerful things have taken place here with healing the sick manifesting and talking with other dimensions. K. is a channeler & the spirit giudes or guardian Angels speak through him.---- Thus your crystals enclosed with our pictures (Blogger note, no pics or crystals, but loads of geodes and crystals outside in the gardens!) Put in each of the 4 corners of the house and draw in some good positive energy.

There have been many good times in this house, lots of laughs- a few tears- and lots of love.

Jack & Betty _____& their son, ____, are friends of ours and also the contractors who originally did the work on the bath & kitchen. Another friend, _____, was in charge of the fireplace & marble. Well I guess thats all from me now.

I hope you enjoy this old house as much as we have. Thanks for taking the time to read this, Sorry there isn't any cash to help you out.

Please take care of our house~

God Bless

D. ____ & K. _____.

So, while I never did find any paperwork on that garage door opener, it did explain all the crystals and geodes all over the yard in the gardens! I wonder where the littler crystals went. There was at least one other owner in between the gentlemen who left the note and myself, but she left no note (that I have stumbled across, anyway!). I've googled their names to no avail, but will keep trying to track them down....I'd love to talk to them about the house. Somehow, knowing they were happy here nearly 20 years ago makes me feel good....knowing they had some spiritual experiences here that were good is even better. A house that is pushing 100 years old certainly has the potential to have some negative energy, but I have yet to feel any at all....I feel safe here, content and energized. I wonder if, not so long ago but still somehow SO long ago, they had any idea someone would end up here who would take that letter and give it permanent life on the internet? While it would be fantastic to find anything out about tenants from 50, 70 years ago....its still interesting & fascinating to read a first hand account of what life was like here in 1992.

And a big thank you for killing the Brown & Gold (sic) kitchen!


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tears on My Pillow

But not really. Latest addition to Buhaki Bungalow is this nifty John Travolta pillow, perfect on the porch swing! "Signed" and dated 1978, the year GREASE came out, which will forever kick the ass of stupid High School Musical. You kids these days WISH you were as cool as we were back in the late 70s when we wished it was the 50s but didn't quite get 50s fashion and thought it was perfectly reasonable to use actors in their late 20s to early 30s as high school students! Grease. Is. The. Word. But nice try.

Silver coverealls are genius. And this video is way more suggestive than I remember. PS, Kinnicke was really hotter than Danny. Gotta love a bad boy who doesn't wish he was anything but.

Some blooms at the Bungalow...iris, peonies, potted plants on the fence (pots painted by the kid) and on the bench by the garage. Just ordered a slew of irises since these bloomed, my first ever (lets hope I have the right touch with them!)....

Meet mini-monorail-squirrel...there is a Mommy & 2 babies that run the fence daily.


Saturday, May 16, 2009

Weekly Accomplishments

Some updates on the yard, very little done on the house (too nice out!). Finally found something to cover the hideous blue and white country checked love seat the former owner left on the screened in porch. I considered selling it (ok, failed at selling it on Craigslist, apparently only prostitution sells there) and then thought about taking it to the basement for when that space gets finished. Almost got crazy and spent too much money on 2 striped tablecloths at Target but realized there was no pink and I like the pink in the barkcloth on the door panel (which still needs finished and placed in the other corner). So started rooting through some boxes of fabric I've ammassed and found a ginormous 40s tropical print barkcloth drape panel and it was actually big enough and then some to cover the country. The country has been ELIMINATED!

Pillow cover needing pillow to cover....

Arch filling in, looking heavy, hope its got a few years left before collapsing....

Variegata Iris leaves bring some bright to a semi-shady spot in front of blooing Foxgloves....

Passion Flower vining up an old surveyors stand next to blooming flowers in a pot on the deck....

Plans to paint the patio table and some pots this week and finish cleaning the garage so we can get my/Dad's '52 Henry J into it soon!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


Driving to the big box store today with the little one along (she's sick, well was, but better and I had errands to run so what the heck), and a song comes on the radio about home. And it got me thinking.....this house is her first "home", as in a roof and basement and yard and garage. Blue skies, 70 degrees and sunny, on the way to buy plants for our yard at our first home. This song made me cry a little for how utterly happy I am, and how wonderful this home and life is for my daughter. Enjoy.


Monday, May 4, 2009

Garden Updates

Since I can't stop working in the yard!!! OK, I did paint the porch swing today after deciding to go with a green/pink 40s tropical motif out there. The fabric is a 40s barkcloth drape I'm going to staple to an old screen door (I think the original to the house) to create a panel and hang out there to be the inspiration for te whole decor....

Moved this weird wooden stand w/ a wire top (weather vane?) from a side bed to the deck, to pot some Passion Flowers to vine onto...added some plants (still in pots, need to get planted) around the pond....

This section I had buried under a massive pile of wet leaves after the snow melted, took my time getting back to it and unearthed some sad, white blanched peonies and it quickly filled in with lily-of-the-valley....

The anal/type A in me could NOT stand the fact that there was no edging to that bed, so today I made one from the wood pile for the fireplace!...

Lots more done today, and the yellow lilac came!


Thursday, April 30, 2009


Pretty keen stuff, watching and waiting to see what comes up in the new yard. I'm giddy over having a huge, well established deep purple lilac bush just outside the dining room and kitchen windows (now if it will stay warm and not rain I could have the windows open to let the fragrance in....). There are some peonies just setting buds, something had I planted this year would take a few years to fill in that well. LOTS and lots and lots of daylilies, some irises, hostas, ferns, daffs & tulips. One lone heuchera in the back corner where Ava & I added a bleeding heart bush (her selection, she adores it)....

Ava's Dad helped me get the pond cleaned up and we got a new pump to get it back in order, I plan to plant a bit more around it to conceal the tube and soften all that rock. There is a red bud in bloom behind it and I moved a stand of rhubarb from the flower bed (hello, invasive plant) back by the daylilies. There will be more potted plants like the one on the deck for some color soon....


Dug out all along the house out the back door from the kitchen/basement landing to create a "kitchen garden" of herbs, some tomatoes and beans.

Unidentified woodland flower under tree by the hostas in back....

Did more in back this week than the front, it will need a lot more digging.....the bed literally is a mess of random bulbs, daylilies, a few columbine, hostas and ivy. No shrubs, no height. I'm wanting to go sort of tropical-Victorian with hot colors and bold leaves. Needs a lot of love! The clematis on the arch is filling in nicely and I believe the shrubs around the front yard are privet hedges, wonderful lime green. Had someone come put new screen doors on the porch, the old ones were L-bracketed and rigged up to where there were nearly falling off everytime we opened them. These will need painted still but are a million times better....

More updates soon!


Sunday, April 5, 2009

Wall of Horror Etc.

Been unpacking/decorating amidst an early Spring snowstorm....shot of the back yard all freshly coated....

Bar shot, on the collonade (sp?) with vintage nudie cocktail napkins....

Added an early 60s screen from an old office building (aquired at www.foundthings.com)....needs some softening and a little color/detail on the dresser holding the TV....

Bar shot, I loooove my bar....

Hallway w/ pics in original frames of my Grandpa as a baby (lower), his Mom & sister....

Hall shot w/ bedroom & bath, bedroom now with some wallhanging detail...


Grandma's cermamic "bug" (which used to reside on the wooden planter of plastic flowers on the railing to the basement in her house), now under some tulips on the island in the kitchen.....

The wall of horror. Was covered with burlap strips and striped with wide bands of mustardy yellow and pumpkin-spice-orange (effective for sophisticated country meets Arts & Crafts but not with my stuff!). Pulled the burlap and got 40s wallpaper coated with orange adhesive and parts of the exposed and damaged plaster. NO idea what I'm going to do....will require extensive TLC/restoration. Grrrr.

What a mess.


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

the Bar

Finally have a great place for my bar that has space enough to go behind for serving and space around sans kid-toy-land to sit at it, and a place for my barware! Its my favorite score from an estate sale ever!!!


Monday, March 30, 2009

Getting There!

Color! Some things moved in, some decorating going on....lots of chaos in closets, the basement and garage 'til I learn how to place things within so much more SPACE!! So far I have pretty well eliminated the traditional, sophisticated country colour palette the previous owner had used. Working more modern/vintage pieces into the arts & crafts style architecture is a challenge but I love how it works together!

The kitchen has become my favorite room. It was a grey green that I had thought I may keep but last minute decided to pull a color from a vintage apron and go with a bold, lobster coral. I still need to paint the green parts of the mobile island, but I'm pretty happy with how the color pulled in all the various vintage linens I'd had stashed away!

A newer bay window installed in the kitchen really brings in great southern light and makes me actually want to spend time there (my last place had a galley kitchen with no natural light...hated it). This is a plaster figural lamp base I got a few years ago with a venetian shade (needs wired still)....

The dining room is a tough room, working with a late 60s uber mod dining set in bright yellow and crisp white! Add to that a wall of heavy wood built ins, a Home Depot-esque arts & crafts ceiling lamp and a wall that had been covered in burlap and painted in a country motif. The wall.....the wall is bad. I pulled away the burlap and exposed 40s wallpaper (which looked gorgeous at one point), covered in mottled dried adhesive and bare plaster in many places (holes too). I'm not sure what the plan is there yet! But with the dining set and rug I'm liking the effect, can't wait for my new curved birch wood pendant lamp to come! The far wall is the same blue as the living room to pull the color through from room to room, and the tree print fabric wall hanging will go on the burlap-free wall when its done.

One corner of the dining room becomes a record listening "nook" with space age chair and 50s TV cabinet for the stereo....

Living room was difficult as far as placing all 4 pieces of the sectional, but it worked out beautifully. The fireplace mantle will end up boxed in with a more Danish Modern-friendly structure, cleaner lines and a cherry or teak. I think I may replace the dark rug with a light shag like the dining area as the wood floor is darker than my old place!

A shot of living room to dining to kitchen. I love the bright color with the woodwork!

My bedroom was a country blue with a full on gingham country motif...now replaced with kiwi green and 40s asian chalkware pieces and asian print textiles in black, red and aqua with the same green...its coming together slowly!

Hoping to get some outside pics soon!