Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hidden . . . and Found - A Restoration Project

When walking through an antique store last month, Leah spotted a beautiful old trunk and came quickly to tell me (I was a ways behind her) . . . I had been looking at one at a different store, but the one she had found was not only nicer and in better condition, it was cheaper, too! Needless to say, it came home with me, and I have plans to restore it . . . plans which have already begun actually. :)

This isn't the greatest angle, but I was trying to get a photo where both the front side and top could be seen at the same time.

A close-up of one of the front latches

The top

The side - it still has the leather handles and all of the original four wheels!

 The trunk had obviously been repapered inside at some point in time, and one of the first things I was going to do was to remove all the paper (which would also help get rid of the musty smell) . . . but then a thought came to mind.

 Oftentimes old trunks have lithographs on the inside of the lids . . . could there be? Is it possible that one could be underneath of the wallpaper?! Excitement built, and I started to carefully peel paper off of one side of the trunk lid and it was found that the trunk had been papered right over the original paper! I didn't get a very large section done before the glue was sticking so tight that both layers were being peeled off. So I stopped and thought.

This isn't the section I was working on, but you can see the original paper below the 'new' layer

 Well, the paper was partly loose on the other side of the lid, so why not work there? I peeled off one small piece, and saw color behind it. 

I caught my breath and slowly and carefully peeled a bit more paper off which revealed the sweet face of a girl staring back at me . . . the trunk had its original lithograph!

Now how to remove the paper from it? I worked on it for a bit, but then the glue stuck tight so I stopped to think and consult with Mom and Dad. Mom suggested cutting out around the lithograph edges, removing it, and then trying to get the paper off then.

So that is what I did, and then with using my fingernail to slowly chip away the layer of wallpaper that was covering it, more and more of the picture was able to be seen . . .

In progress 

With the lithograph safely removed, work began in earnest on removing the paper from the inside of the trunk. 

Mom helped me quite a bit at the beginning peeling off the paper that wasn't glued down well. And then over the course of the past month, I slowly worked to remove the remainder . . .

Soak with vineger, let set, scrape off a layer. Soak with vinegar, let set, scrape some more. Soak with vinegar . . . and you get the idea. :) The lid was the most challenging part to do with it being curved, and whoever did the second repapering used a lot of glue there!

Now it's all cleaned inside and ready for the next step . . . using steel wool on the outside of the trunk to try to remove the rust. Hopefully on a nice day in the next few weeks, I can haul it outside and start on that!

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Autumn Days on the Farm

Beautiful fall days with crisp, chilly mornings, leaves of brilliant and varying colors falling to the ground, nighthawks flying over in the evenings, and calls of flocks of geese filling the air as they head south for the winter . . . all of these and more have been much enjoyed the past weeks! Little changes have been taking place as summer made its exit and autumn crept in with all of its beauty. And as the seasons change, life continues on our little farm . . . .

After the rains, some of the strawberry plants began blooming again

And they're even producing a few berries!

 - The Rabbits -

The litters of rabbits that we have now are at their cutest stage and are so sweet!

Munching on hay that Leah just gave them

So cute!

More nestboxes! With quite a few more does bred and due to kindle soon, Dad was busy over the weekend building more nestboxes for all of them

- The Chicks -

The chicks have left their adorable stage behind and are now . . . not so cute. :) They were moved outside awhile back and are currently in the chick brooder pen. And with now being acclimated to chillier weather, they are being let out into the outdoor chick run. They have been enjoying that!


A peek inside the brooder pen . . . the shy ones like to stay inside!

- The Garden -

While the vast majority of the garden was destroyed in the hail storm, there are a few plants that survived including a few sorry looking tomato plants (that have a few tomatoes on them!) and a few nearly leafless pepper plants that are slowly regrowing.

One of three celery plants that re-grew after the hailstorm

The amazing mangel beets! After being decimated by the blister beetles during the summer and after having the hailstorm destroy what few leaves there were that were trying to grow back, the plants have rebounded! The goats are going to be enjoying these over the winter months. :)

Kale that was planted after the storm

Leaf Lettuce

The marigolds are reblooming now, too. It's so nice having their cheery flowers out there!

- The Goats -

Life with goats continues to be a fun and enjoyable adventure! They each add so much to life. :) I didn't get photos of all of them as they are difficult to photograph as they always want to be right up close! But here are a few that I got . . .

Our new buck Ruger - he's a sweetheart!


Mischievous Larkspur - she is so entertaining! Though a little ornery at times. :)


Our neighbor's pasture

The Burning Bush

Wild Aster blooming down in the woods - the honeybees really enjoyed these!

Through these beautiful days, my heart has been so full with thankfulness to the Lord for His goodness, His faithfulness, His mercy and patience, His gentle guidance, and yes, His discipline, too . . . thankfulness for Who He is. When taking in the majestic night-time expanse of sky filled with stars, when listening to the wind blow through the pine trees, when seeing how He works in our day to day lives, when He leads, guides and teaches me through His Word . . . His loving hand is so clearly seen. "Bless the Lord, O my soul, and let all that is within me, bless His holy name."! (Psalm 103:1)

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Autumn Days with Family

 The past weeks have been such beautiful and pleasant ones here in Missouri! We have enjoyed many times all together and below are a conglomeration of photos (most from Mom's camera :) from some of these times . . .

Me, Dad, Leah, Ryan with Adelyn on his shoulders, and Ashley out for a walk at their place (Mom was taking the photo and Gracen was napping)

The first 'decent' family photo that we have of all of them!

One day in September, Ashley and the girls came and picked Mom, Leah and I up, and we spent the day in a nearby city visiting their JoAnn fabrics, going to a large consignment sale for everything children related, and enjoying a delightful picnic at a park. It was really an enjoyable day! We had such a fun time together!

During our picnic

Someone woke up from her nap. :)

Leah helping Adelyn with her lunch

Sleeping Adelyn
By the time we were heading home, we had worn both the little girls out!

And sleeping Gracen

The rest of the photos are all from different times together . . .

Adelyn learning to rock in Mom's old rocking chair while Mom helps her. Meanwhile, she's enjoying playing with little 'Annie', too

Dinnertime! Mom was helping Adelyn, and I got to enjoy holding Gracen for a bit

It was so sweet watching this! Ashley was talking to Gracen, and Gracen would just smile and laugh and laugh!

Storytime with Grandpa. She loves to be read to!

Her chubby cheeks are so kissable!

Special and fun times!

Gracen and her Mommy playing on the floor together

Adelyn making one of her silly faces while sitting on her Daddy's lap

Gracen and I playing with Adelyn's teddy bear . . . Gracen wasn't too sure about it!

One of the days when Ashley and the girls came over, she helped me make soap for the first time! Or, I should say, the first time for me. :) She's made who knows how many hundreds of bars of soap, so she is very experienced which was a definite help and relief to me! Anyway, making the soap with her was so much fun! And I was pleasantly surprised at how simple the process was. I'm already looking forward to making some more . . . and soon!

Measuring the essential oil

Using an immersion blender to blend the ingredients until they came to a trace

And the finished soap cut and drying!

This photo was taken the same day that we made the soap . . . Ashley had gotten some new books for Adelyn, and Adelyn was fascinated by them! She pulled them one by one out of the bag, turned them right side up, and started 'reading'. She especially loved it, though, when Ashley would read them to her. :)

And there you have a glimpse into some of our family's times together the past month! Next to come is a post of some of the recent happenings on the farm . . . .