I Have Yard-Fright

My littlest chicken LOVES to be outdoors and has always enjoyed planting flowers and such with me.  The former owners of our house had quite the green thumbs and because of that fact, there is always something in bloom in our yard, which leads to an almost daily gathering of flowers for Tot.  I’d say she’s pretty good and putting them together, huh?

But no matter how many blooms there are out there, it’s an old garden in need of major attention and currently making me feel claustrophobic.  And guess who doesn’t have the first clue how to go about giving it the proper attention it needs!  I’d like to think that I have all the time and desire in the world to play around out there everyday (because that’s what it would require), but honestly, I don’t.  I like to plant flower pots and perhaps tackle a small bed or two, but 1.13 acres scares the fire out of me!!  It’s too hot really to do any major work to it right now, so I’ll just keep everything alive in the mean time.  Perhaps the fall will bring fresh eyes and courage. Who knows, hopefully one day we can add a pool similar to this.  Isn’t it gorgeous?  Simple and perfect!

Oh, and while we’re at it, I’d like this little walkway down to the pool, ok?  Thanks.

Until that day comes, anyone have any tips how to go about tacking a maintenance job of this size?  I really just need the majority of it cleaned up and trimmed back.  Then I could consider reworking a few of the beds closer to the house, especially on the front of the house. Has anyone ever DIY-ed this size yard with little or no paid labor helpers?  Would love to know any secrets.  I’m guessing good old blood, sweat and tears is going to be the answer…
Have a great week – Jenny

Happy 4th of July!

Are yall having a good summer??  Ours is filled with lazy days but it’s flying by…PLEASE SLOW DOWN!

We are off to spend the holiday in Dallas with our cousins.  This time last year we were celebrating the Mister’s 40th birthday.  It was so much fun!!  I do love a party, don’t you?  Maybe not as much the hours leading up to the party, but full bellies, great laughs and time spent with friends and family is the reason I love them.  Even if its a more low-key event like my setting above for his special day this year, planning and hosting a party is one of my most favorite things to do.

Whatever you have on tap for today, I hope its full of fun, family, friends and sparklers galore!

Have a good one – Jenny

PS – At said party above, the younger crowd set up an Instagram account for me.  I’m still not positive I know exactly what to do, but if you feel like following me, I’m at jennyjohnstoninteriors.  Currently I only have 15 year olds and younger following me…I’m so hip!

My First DIY Project

Today is the last day of school…

Tomorrow I’ll be at the lake…

COULD.NOT.BE.HAPPIER!

But before I get away for a few days, I wanted to share final pics of my very first DIY project.  I’m pretty darn pleased with the way my back hallway turned out. 

You remember it’s ugliness, right? (I promise this will be last time I’ll show these.  I’m just a little giddy over it’s transformation!)

 
GET A LOAD OF IT NOW!

 (the laundry room is behind this door)

(Just realized you can see my messy office in the reflection…please ignore!)

A few “in progress” pics

Super Sabrina is a big reason why this project even began.  She is an old friend who was willing to come help and boy did she ever.  She was here all of 5 minutes when she started ripping out the existing indoor/outdoor carpet!

I hadn’t made any flooring plans so I panicked a bit at this point because the linoleum was worse than the carpet (if that’s even possible)!  But, I’m so glad she made me take it up because it forced me to make a flooring choice.  Even if it’s not my forever flooring, it’s about 1000x better than what was there. My good friends at B&J Floor Service hooked me up with new carpet and I must say, I’ve never been happier to have indoor/outdoor carpet installed in my house!

And then some painting began and lasted through most of the day.  I could tell immediately that I was in love!

And jsut like that, we were done.  No seriously, it really didn’t take that long.  We prepped on Friday night for about 2 hours, worked all day Saturday for about 10 hours, and I followed up on Sunday after Sabrina went home for maybe another two.  Ok…so maybe that is long when you think about it in hours, but it was practically completed in one weekend.  And I consider that a huge accomplishment!

Looking back at my inspiration photo, I think I came pretty close.  I will add more frames to the mix over time and perhaps a few other quirky things too.

I even have a new track light thanks to this find at EX-CESS and some electrical skills from The Mister and his dad.

It’s supposedly some sort of chicken feeder, but I’m not sure how it works in that capacity.  We (them) installed a few sockets inside the cylinder, ran new wires in the trough part, and hooked it up with the wires in the ceiling from the old fixture.  And voila, done!

So, all in all, I am thrilled with the outcome.  I honestly was so surprised at how much I liked the black.  Really was hesitant about putting chalk to it, but it’s been very easy to clean.  And it just goes to show, a little change in paint and flooring goes a very long way!  Up next, that horrible yellow laundry room.

Have a good one!

Stalking The Local Real Estate

It’s completely normal for someone who just bought a house 4 months ago to peruse the local real estate listings, right? 

No, we aren’t moving, but I do like to look “just in case”.  In case of what, I have no clue (ahem…the doctor who lives on the other side of the river who stopped by to inquire about purchasing our house…are you reading???), but it’s still fun to see what’s currently for sale.  If anything, it reinforces the purchase of our house, needed repairs and all!

Let’s start at the higher end and dream away.

How gorgeous is this Spanish style house?  Its in a very desirable neighborhood on a very nice street.  I paticularly like the finishes in the kitchen and the garage doors.

This Tudor is very charming and also in a very desirable section. I love the mature landscaping and those pretty azaleas.

I have long admired this historic house in one of the oldest neighborhoods.  I will sometimes drive out of my way just to slowly creep by the few houses in this section just to gaze at them all.  What an opportunity to own this home! I wish there were interior images.

Another very recognizable house.  I know that the family who lives here just recently renovated every inch. It’s located right across the street from the park and it was a precious sight at Halloween with many kids frolicing in the front yard.

How about we come back down to Earth and check out a few more listings.

This Spanish house we actually viewed before it was listed on the market.  We wanted it badly, but just could not make it work for our family.  I was very disappointed because to be able to buy a house already with spanish roof tiles, copper gutters and leaded glass windows was way more within my reach than to ever build a house with those finishes.  It is a GREAT house if you don’t need too much space.

And how precious is this yellow front door?!?!  Adorable.  This house is in the same neighborhood of our rent house and we LOVED living there.  Charming houses one after the other and very friendly atmosphere.  Looks like there is room out back for an office too.  Ok, so maybe I do want to move.  Oh I’m kidding. (sorta)
And this one is super cute too!  Love the exterior paint colors and the black kitchen cabinets. 

However…if my life depended on it, I’d buy this one in a heartbeat.  It’s exactly in the shape I want it which is untouched!  I’ve always bought the house that needs the most lovin’ and brought her back to life.  It has great space and a FABULOUS price.  I’d slap some white paint on the outside of that sucker, get a black metal roof and trick it out all modern farmhouse like.  Can’t you see it??


That’s a good sampling of what is out there right now.  If you want to see more in this specific area, the link to these and many others is here.  You will want to check them all out because there are some other really great ones I didn’t feature.  All the listings in Shreveport/Bossier area can be found here.  And by the way, it just so happens that my sweet friend, Lisa Hargrove, has most of these listing I mentioned here, but that was coincidence.  Lisa is one of the best, so of course she would have the best listings! 
So, who wants to be my neighbor?  I’ll make you moving day red beans and rice and cornbread.  I’ve been told it’s pretty good!
Have a great day – Jenny

I’m In Need Of An Intervention

Oh. My. Mercy. 

I’m completely addicted to Downton Abbey.  I know I’m extremely late to this party, and I know there are millions of similar blog posts out there, but can we just talk about it for a minute?

The scenery, the house, the costumes, the script, the actors…it’s an incredible feast for the eyes!  Thank goodness it’s Mother’s Day weekend because while I was cracking out on Season One, The Mister has been painting the laundry room (yes, a project I started and he seems to be finishing).  And my chickens think I’ve lost my mind because I can’t stop pretending we all live at Downton Abbey.

So now I need Season Two.  My supplier just hasn’t had time to watch Season Two yet (whatever).  Anyone in the greater Shreveport area have Season Two I can borrow tonight? Considering I watched Season One for seven hours straight, you’ll have it back in no time. I’m starting to shake otherwise!

So enjoy a few pics and please, do yourself a favor and go watch it now.  Heck, if you’ve already seen it, watch it again for Pete’s Sake!