Archive for ‘yummy books’

March 7th, 2012

A Mental Remodel

For the last week, I have had Sarah Susanka’s “the not so big life” on permanent pause so I can just un-pause it when I get a moment. I have much fewer moments than I would like, a problem, I gather, which is part of the point of the book. Now if I only had a few more moments I could get to the part where she suggests a solution! (Yes, I really am not very far along). I have thoroughly enjoyed her books, even read them- not just looked at the pictures :P.  I love her idea of building smaller, whatever smaller means to you, so that you can employ beautiful craftsmanship. And she has extended that to remodel smaller as well.

Since our budget is strictly limited (non-existent), I have been doing some mental remodeling on our home instead. And it fits right into my passion for organizing. I personally think that every real estate agent selling a cottage who desires to have good future referrals should screen potential buyers by asking them just one question, “Is your moon in Virgo? Or is this going to be your second home.” Being organized as a knee jerk reaction is the only way to live in a very small cottage.

Sooooo the absolutely amazing idea that I just came up with was to *Tat-ta-ta!* turn the “spare” bedroom into our living room! It took our deciding to move the computer business into an office outside the house- which turned out to be a perfect thing to do.

What did adding more public space do for the cottage? It provided an “away” room with comfortable seating that anyone making loud noises, or wanting to escape loud noises, could retreat to. It was the one thing that made the cottage unlivable in the wintertime, that you just couldn’t get away an read a book if you needed to.

Now the house feels (dare I use the “s” word? Oh, live dangerously) spacious! Well, as spacious as a tiny little house can feel. We have an absolutely wonderful 6 3/4 foot long dining table that fits a lovely amount of guests and we confine our really big bashes for the summer when we can eat and lounge outside. I long for a guest room but the living room has a pull out couch and it still has it’s door so it can double as a guest bedroom. Perhaps someday I’ll put in a built in day bed that can double as a couch, that would be more comfy, but this is fine for now.

Of course, I long for more windows, a complete redo of the cellar, a bathtub not attached to an outer wall, ect. But this is pretty good for now. And I have all that paint in the cellar just waiting for spring!

February 27th, 2012

A New Fashioned House

I was warding off a cold that had hit Eva full force this week. In addition to Vitamin C and Echinacea, I checked out of my library Craftsman Homes: More than 40 Plans for Building Classic Arts & Crafts-Style Cottages, Cabins, and Bungalows by Gustav Stickley. I found myself drooling over “An Old-Fashioned House”. Would it be a sacrilege to say I wanted to stray a wee bit from the master?  At least in the area of a downstairs W.C. and a few other items that are dear to my heart. I have the raw sketch I made that I’ll put up for your consideration but at some point I’ll clean it up and add a second story. I promise.

Here is Gustav’s version:

First Floor:

Second Floor:

And my version:

The secret room is my office/guest room. One thing I love, butler’s pantries- there is something so yummy about them- I wonder if I would like it as much in real life. Ah well, who cares about real life anyway! :P

One thing I was sad to lose is the veranda- it is seriously drool worthy.