January 2013 - Lynn Fern

Oh door how I love thee!!

Sorry I’ve been slightly missing from blog world the last week or so.  We’ve had a string of nasty colds running through our house.  They’ve been persistent and have just stuck around.  I am still not feeling like myself & hope to kick this thing soon.  Our weather here hasn’t helped.  One day it is 8 and snowing, the next day it’s sunny and 45 or rainy and almost 60. 

Onto the fun stuff!!!  I worked at the house for a few hours on Saturday and all day Sunday.   We are trying to prepare for the CO.  I have touch up painting to do & I’ve been working on the vanities for the bathrooms.  But the best is the door was hung today J

no light on

We had to have the straps lengthened which the guy that did our framing did for us.  He’s handy & pretty awesome!!  I need to refinish the door.  Still trying to decide on a color. Suggestions??   We also need to test the paint for lead before sanding.  The door leads into my pantry. 

I just love how the light shines through the window.  I also love the mail slot & the door knocker.  We will plug the holes but will be putting the handle back on. 

Light is on

I purchased the door at Philadelphia Salvage Co. and I’ve been dying to see it up.  Dave did such an awesome job building the arch for me.  Every person that has come to the house has ohhhed and ahhhed over the door. 

By the way did you get a peek at the door that’s sitting in my pantry??  This will be a redo just for a fun door to have as décor.  I bought that door for $20!!

A sneak peek at the downstairs guest bathroom.  

 Obviously I still need to finish up painting.  The toilet & sink will be finished next Wednesday.  

I hope everyone has a great week!

Much love, peace & happiness

~ The Ferns



Gosh you guys have made me feel unbelievable awesome!!  Thank you all so much for the sweet comments, follows via my blog & facebook follows.  It really means more to me than you will ever know.  I enjoy reading blogs, getting inspiration which comes from you guys, and learning about new products or ways of doing things.  So a really BIG THANK YOU!!! 

I am super new to this whole blog writing thing.  I started the blog to journal our journey of the fire & the rebuilding process so that one day my girls would see how fortunate we are and how we came through so much stronger as a family... We united.  Sometimes things happen in our lives that we have no idea why.  I am the type that I dive in the middle of things, plant my feet with my heels dug deep in & I don't let go until it is complete.  I have taken on the challenge to rebuild and put some different touches in our home.  What I have learned & wouldn't have if we hadn't had the fire was I can design, create & decorate...see it lit something under me :)  Pun intended!!

I have traveled many days (mostly on my own) to salvage stores, thrift stores, antique shops, tag/estate sales & auctions.  I have found some pretty amazing deals. 

What I realized as I showed off the big white armoire was...this is a big part of our rebuilding process.  So...here are a few pieces that I need to refinish that I've picked up recently.  Some things will be in our home, but some things I will refinish & sale.

Side Table

The detail on the table is beautiful hand carved

This is the table that is part of the side table.  The table top isn't attached to the legs

And the chair (6 chairs)

Lighting was horrible but this is the hutch that goes with the set
All of the pieces are a set.  We purchased the table, chairs, hutch and side table as a set.  I will be refinishing them.  This set I got at our local Habitat for Humanity Restore.

Mom & I are headed off to an auction tonight.  Last time we didn't get home until 1:00 a.m and we were loaded to the top and more.

Hopefully I will have lots of pictures to bring back to you of more great pieces!!

I'd eventually like to do a get to know me post.  Would you be interested?  If so, what would you like to know about me?

With much love, peace & happiness

~ The Ferns


Auction love..

Before I go into my finds..  I am asking if you can lift up Calli Smith Manuel.  She is the little sister of a high school friend.  Calli & her husband are in South Africa serving as missionaries.  She has become very ill with malaria and her liver is failing.  Her family is so far away and are extremely worried about her.  I as a mom could not imagine what it would be like not to be able to get to my child in such a critical situation.  I ask that you keep her & her family in your thoughts & prayers.  I usually don't ask for this on my blog, but I just really felt the need.  

I grabbed the below beauties at an online auction that is close to home.  

I plan to use this cabinet in my arts & crafts room to hold all of my supplies.

I will put shelves in it so everything will be kept in a nice & neat area.  My room will not have a closet so this will work perfect.  Wanna know how much I paid for it??  $25!!

When you first walk into our front door to the left is our stairs to go up to the bedrooms & common area.  You go up 2 steps to a platform & turn right to go all the way up.  On the platform is a cubby.  Originally we talked about a closet, but I didn’t really want a closet there.  I wanted to find an armoire…one similar to what I had lost in the fire.  I have been looking for the last 5 or 6 months finding nothing.  This pretty thing was the first thing I saw when I logged in to the auction… I got a little excited! 

I like the mirror & think it will add a nice touch!

A score at $70!!

The other thing I found was these side tables.  

They have a glass top that will be removed.  I picked them out to see if they will work for my sister in law.  She has a smallish living area but wanted side tables.  I will strip them, chose a paint color & distress them.   I hope they are a good fit for her…if not I am sure I can find a nice spot for them.  $36 for the pair…not bad.

I am headed to another auction on Wednesday.  I would like to replace our furniture from the fire with the things I can redo.  I know that this can/will take some time since I am needing to buy furniture for almost every room, but this can also be fun so long as I don't start to feel a tad overwhelmed or discouraged.  

Hope you enjoyed my finds :)

Much love, peace & happiness!!

~The Ferns


It's the final countdown

Not sure I can wrap my head around the fact that we are in the very final stages of completion.  We are now down to clean up & the little details to get us to CO.  What the what???

First I remain so humbled by the event that led us to where we are now.  I am forever grateful to the entire crew that has worked on the rebuild.  I am not sure I could ever express how much I appreciate the amount of time, effort & work they poured into our home.  There were abnormally warm days that gave us the ability  to move forward at a faster pace, but then we had some crazy rains that made their way to us during the framing, and then we've had some face hurting cold days.  These guys came & worked through each day to ensure the house was built!  We've had hands down the best crew ever!

Would you like to see some pictures?  If not, turn away now....

Girls room

Common Area upstairs...love the view

This will become our outdoor patio with the roof from the deck upstairs

The stonework has been completely finished.  Rich our mason did an amazing job!  He worked so hard & put so much into it!!

Hope you enjoyed.  I will be bringing finished pictures soon and even a video tour (possibly)!

With much love, peace & happiness!
~ The Ferns

The clouds are still lingering...but I wanted to show off a few pictures of the newly finished vanity that will go in our bathroom.

This is the sink that will be put in it.  I am slightly in love with the sink :)  I found the sink online at Coppersinks.com.  I was hesitant to buy online but I am so glad I did.  First the customer service was out of the world awesome.  It was here before I knew it & the service rep was in touch with me via email the moment my order was received (they are in Mexico).  Not to mention the prices are good & they run sales often.  You can also find them on Facebook.
The sink is sitting on the vanity so you can see how it will look.  My faucet is an oil rubbed bronze that will really complete this nicely.

Now I must move onto the chippy chip vanity for the girls bathroom.

Much love, peace & happiness!!
~The Ferns

A sneak peak..

Wanna know what I've been working on...  I will give you a little clue.

Can't wait to show you the finished piece.  Unfortunately it snowed last night & it is cloudy out.  All of the pictures I snapped are horrible & just don't do this beauty justice.  This was as the wax was drying :)

Aging a beam

Oh the aging process.  Sometimes it is great thing, but sometimes not so much.  I love things that are old, distressed & aged.  Our home would be filled with all sorts of things that are either aged on their own (no mention of that), and things that I will add an aged look to.  

We put a beam through the kitchen/dining room on through to the living room.  We did this for support since the whole area is an open concept.

The beam as it was –

I knew with our home decor I would want the beam to have an aged look to it.  It is definitely something that is easy to do, and something that I love doing.


I wish I would've been able to start on this prior to it being put up, but it just wasn't possible.  From the time the beam was delivered & installed really gave me no time.  No biggie, I just grabbed the tall ladder and went to work.


My process actually started days before hand since I knew the beam was being delivered & installed.  I had used vinegar and a steel wool pad along with old coffee grounds.  This created a beautiful dark brown color.  I let the vinegar & steel wool sit for about 24 hours & then I added old coffee grounds & let it sit for an additional 24 hours.


I spent the better part of the day adding age to it.  I first strained my mix into a spray bottle and spritzed it on.  I then used a rag to wipe it thoroughly.   


I started on one end and worked my way down, and by the time I got to the end, the beginning was dry.  I went back and started over again.  I did this since I wanted it a little darker.



I ended up wiping the mixture on for a total of 3 coats.  


It now looks old & weathered, but not a stain look. 




It was a perfect color, and fit right into our home.  

The process took all day long.  But I love it, unfortunately my back & neck didn't love me when I was finished!  I did finish up on painting the kitchen, dining room, & living room.  All around the trim & such…  

I even had some of my friends stop by and say a little hello while I took a little lunch break....they stayed for a few minutes & enjoyed a bite to eat!! 

Tomorrow the hardwood floors will start being installed. 

Are you interested in how I transformed the beam from looking like new wood to old wood? 


With much love, peace & happiness

~ The Ferns


The life...

Of a 4 year old that just had her tonsils removed - ICE POPS, ICE POPS and more ICE POPS...with an occasional bowl of ice cream.

Katie has become my hero.  She has come through this far better than I could've expected or even asked for.  I honestly can't believe she's had surgery & on a part of her body that when sore makes other parts hurt.

We got up Wednesday morning & headed into the hospital...just me & my girrl..oh and Root Beer of course.  Daddy stayed home with Shea.  I had tried my hardest/best to prepare her.  I explained that no food or drinks...we were a trooper.  Mommy only had a cup of coffee & I held off to eat so it wouldn't be in her face.

We sat in our room (well our bay) until it was time to go.  Everyone that is having surgery is located in the same area.  Katie & Root Beer immediately won over every nurse, doctor & transporter.  She was as pleasant to be around as a fresh slice of warm apple pie.  We chatted, watched cartoons & played on the tablet...

We were called about 2 hours of being there.  The staff was truly amazing.  They explained everything to her & even let her bring Root Beer with her.  Her doctor...well not much I can say that would do him justice.  He is just one of the nicest people to be around.

The girl laid on the OR bed, fell right asleep & within 35 minutes the doctor came out to speak with me. I knew she was feeling a little bad that morning (we had a rough night going into it).  I thought it was a little cold, but I was so very wrong.  She had tonsillitis once again.  UGH...so glad those bad boys are gone.

The nurses came to get me about 10 minutes later (longest 10 minutes of my life).  She was a little groggy...

She didn't want to open her mouth...

But they said she never once cried or even so much as whimpered.  Proud mom!!   We spent about 2 hours in her room before we were released. The only issue was the girl inherited mom's post-op issues - I always throw up from the medicine & I always itch like a loon coming off the medicine.  Both times after having the girls they had to give me anti-itch medicine :(  After the 4th time she threw up they gave her a dose of Zofran...works like a charm.  5 minutes later and she was downing orange ice & within 15 minutes we were on our way out...her walking of course.  She wanted nothing to do with the wheel chair :)  I think she did awesome and she truly has been such a big girl through the whole thing!!

The only issue has been a little fever so far.  She only cried once at 4 am in the morning when she woke after the pain medicine wore off & she didn't understand why it hurt to swallow.  Once she had the pain medicine she was back out like a light.

We haven't had great sleep & now Shea has an ear & sinus infection...so no one except Katie got good sleep last night. But tonight I feel it...I need it.

I have lots of pictures of the house coming soon...  Exciting stuff!!

Much love, peace & happiness!
~ The Ferns

In Love...

On Friday the granite counter was installed in the kitchen.  I was not there...  Kacey stopped by as the guys were wrapping up.  I asked him how it looked, and in true manly form said "ehh it looks good".  That was it!!!  My mind was like WHAT...  So I probed & he never expanded on his thoughts (that's normal for him...not much phases him).

Saturday morning I got up & started working on the vanities (see prior post).  We were heading to a family party later in the evening.  I told him I wanted to stop by & take a look.

We opened the door & it was love at first sight!! It was more beautiful than I could possibly imagine.

My cellphone pictures don't even come close to doing it justice.  I looked at it for at least 30 minutes trying to find the seam...no where was it found.  They really exceeded my expectations.

I called the granite place earlier this morning to pay them. First off if your in the area - Sherwood tile is amazing!!!  They are always super friendly when you go in.  I usually talk to a gentleman named Jim.  He is a pleasure to chat with.  Chris is the head installation guy. When I spoke to Chris I found out Jim is his dad... no wonder Chris is as nice as he is!!  Chris said he loved the kitchen & it was showroom quality!  Wow talk about boosting my ego...just a little!!

I love walking in & seeing the kitchen!  I have pinched myself a few times...it really is my house.  We are blessed beyond...

In the next 3 weeks will be down the stretch time...  We are so close.  Not many updates between now & next week.  I will be stuck at home starting Wednesday for a week.  And, then the floors go in.  I am beyond stoked because once they are in we are onto the punch list - YAY!!!

I hope everyone had a great weekend.  Ours was busy but enjoyable.  Kacey's Uncle Pat was up from West Virginia.  So we went to a last minute family party which was fun.

Sunday ours friends baby had his 1st birthday party.  He's such a handsome baby & we just love him so much.  My girls...well Katie was so into him.  She'd just make him laugh, but she was so very gentle which made me proud of her.

How cute is he?

All the littles playing...all of them so sweet!

With much love, peace & happiness
~ The Ferns

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