Monthly Archives: March 2011

A Cozy New Great Room in Progress

We had a March snowstorm two days ago, bringing a foot of snow to our part of Northern Michigan.  The snow had all but disappeared and spring was in the air, but the snow is lovely anyhow.  And it gives a feeling that there is not quite such a hurry to finish the indoor project, as spring is still a little ways off.  But only a little.


We began our Great Room Project – adding some warmth and comfort to the area we spend the most time in – with color.  I wanted to do it before the weather finished turning and the paddocks were dry.  After that it is all horses and gardening for the next six months.


The painting is going nicely.  The walls used to be two colors:  eggshell and taupe.  The eggshell was just uninteresting, but the taupe was overly bland and tepid.  I love to see the rich Tuscan gold rolled on over it.  It looks so warm and mellow.  It compliments that natural pine woodwork most suitably!  Of course, it is taking twice as long as expected, but why we didn’t just expect it to take twice as long is beyond me … because it always does! LOL!  The gold is accented by a deep “Maple Leaf Red” in the foyer, halls, and inside of the built-in shelves, which is just rich and gorgeous.


The shelves… well, I guess I won’t go into the full story, but things weren’t working out the way I had planned them.  And mind you, I had asked God to help the project along and make it into something we would be well pleased with.  He does that, you know.  I don’t know why – just because He is so good.  But anyhow, I had asked, so when things started to go awry with these shelves and cupboards in the built-in, I was getting frustrated.  But He gently reminded me of what I had asked Him, and as I relaxed, I was so surprised to see what is evolving!  I can’t wait until it’s done and I’ll post a photo.  But this hitherto rather useless and ineffecient eyesore in the middle of the room is turning into the most delightful… library.  And oh, how we enjoy our books!  The unit is nine feet tall.  And I was dismayed about using it for books, as we could never reach more than the lower two shelves, and we would have to continue fighting with the cupboards, whose shelves were too short to comfortably accomodate books.  But a used, rolling library ladder we found on ebay, along with actually removing the cupboards and installing eight hardwood shelves will make it a delightful place to store most of our books.  I think we’ll end up a good 20 linear feet shy considering our rather large collection (especially with teaching school at home).  But we’ll make do, and I am always trying to pare down.  Of course… I am always adding more books to what we already have, too, so it is probably awash!  LOL!


In all, I am so far quite satisfied, and deeply grateful to my Darling for letting us proceed with this project.  It may mean foregoing any work in the tack room, which would be very disappointing, but that is the way of things, and it may need to wait for some other year’s budget.


Lest I forget to mention it, this week I became an aunt (again) – this time to Dagny Louise Daniels, Jesse’s sister’s new daughter.  We are so thrilled.  They lost their firstborn son immediately after birth, and their oldest daughter is the cutest little peanut imaginable.  We see them several times throughout the year and it is such a blessing!  God has truly answered our prayers for their family!


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Tack Room

A tack room design from Embarr Designs

We completed building our horse barn over a year ago.  Since then I’ve not found the gumption to finish off the tack room.  But I think I’m ready to tackle it this summer.

I’m trying to decide whether to go with finish grade plywood paneling and 2″ trim as in the above photo, with drywall on the top portion of the wall to keep it feeling cleaner, lighter, and more open.  I think this is a classy, comfortable look.  Or, I could line the walls with pine paneling as in the photo below.

I think either option will be roughly the same in terms of complexity, and I know the cost is very similar, so it’s more a matter of which I prefer and which I feel comfortable installing myself.  There are certainly merits to both.

Another problem I face is how to let the light from the ridge skylight filter down into the tack room, as the tack room needs to be completely sealed to minimize the amount of dust, dirt, and chaff that comes in and covers the tack we have stored there.  One possibility is to leave the ceiling completely open and build a bank of “windows” out of plexiglass all across the top of the partition between the tack and feed room, up to the ridge line.  That seems somewhat complex and not very good-looking to me.  Another option is to install a drop ceiling, leaving many of the tiles opaque to allow as much light as possible to filter through.  The problem with that option is that not as much light will come through, and pests can build their homes atop the panels.  On the other hand, a finished ceiling can also be useful for storage, provided we avoid storing anything in a manner that will block the light coming through the opaque panels!

Ceilume offers a really neat variety of drop ceiling panels.  By changing some of these out for opaque panels, we can let daylight into the tack room.


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