On the Homefront

I think autumn has finally arrived in our part of the world. Here in Kansas it always seems to peek around the edges, giving little snippets of cool weather and fluttery days, mixed with hot and humid. Then suddenly, it’s cold, and the leaves disappear from the trees.

Very different from the autumns I remember as a teenager in upstate New York. The colorful show began in August, evenings with cool suggestions of winter to come. Gorgeous colors seeming to turn overnight. By October, you knew those wintery days were just a breath away, and the holiday season was upon you. It always seemed to be a colorful parade, leading up to a finale of crystal snowflakes.

Here in Kansas, there is no stroll through the off-seasons of autumn and spring. More like a plunge.

So, the kitchen projects I needed to finish took a backseat to the outside projects that kept popping up. I probably shouldn’t word it like that. One would imagine just springing onto the scene, rather than items on a list I always have running through my mind.

Our oldest grandson came for a week or so to help with those outside goals. Poor guy…he will probably never return. This grandma’s house isn’t a safe haven of cuddles and cookies. It’s more of a boot camp for life-training. But there was some baking thrown in for good measure.

He worked like a trooper, helping me dig holes for fencing, and pushing wheelbarrow load after load of dirt to fill holes around the yard. He mixed cement, and got out supplies that are a burden for me after a long day of digging. And he hung in there. Projects that were on my long list were accomplished, and then some. And now this grandmother feels better about the cold winds around the corner.

We assured him that the holidays were upon us, and days of playing games for hours were promised to come. Days when we all can sip hot chocolate and eat yummy baked goods. I hope those remembered other times will be an enticement.

In the meantime, I can look at my very happy roses climbing on the white fence, walk on the stone path Joshua helped me with, and look forward to some steaks on the firepit he helped me move to a larger area.

My beautiful pink roses on the arbor and fence.

At the end of those days with our oldest grandchild, our son and son-in-law helped replace the windows in our bedroom. This was the third set of windows they have done in the past couple of months. It was a huge project…more than we expected…just like all the others. But they are beautiful, and they fit in with all the other windows now. I’m hoping for at least one more warm day to get them painted outside.

View of new windows, and kitchen door installed in kitchen renovation.
View of windows from the inside.

This year has accomplished way more than I had hoped for when it began. The kitchen was to be the main project, and it probably was. But so much more has been done. All with the help of family. Some would read this post and think that all I care about is getting stuff done around the house. Some of those readers may even be my family! šŸ˜‰ But what sticks out even more in my mind is the time that I have spent with all the family that has been here to help…and that I am blessed to have children, sons-in-law, and grandchildren that are willing to be here for us. And not just when it comes to projects. I know that if we ever need anything, our family would be there in any way that they could to lend a hand. That means so much in this world today of each person looking out for themselves.

The past few months have given me many memories of frustrating times of things not going right, boards in the face, dropped hammers on toes, wiring cut, and rethinking of a plan. But so many more memories of stepping back and thinking, “Wow! We accomplished that!” And I believe all of us can say that. Thank you to everyone for just hanging in there!

Before picture of the east wall with our cat having a snack.

As a side note, I had another blogger at https://bluewillowcottage.com/2018/10/12/make-a-coffee-station-at-home/ ask about my coffee station. It ended up being a question about my previous kitchen remodel in the home we sold in 2020. My how time flies! So here is a picture of our coffee area now. I don’t have it as cute as some, but it is extremely handy. All coffee supplies are located in those cupboards and drawers. The counter provides enough room to hold many cups waiting for coffee. (Grandchildren have some cocoa, lots of cream and a bit of coffee). For me, it works perfectly!

The east wall now.

Making Progress…

With cooler temperatures just around the corner here in the mid-west, I won’t be able to put off our kitchen project finishing-touches much longer. There is something to be said about opening a door and letting the autumn breezes drift through. Especially when you are painting and staining. I will be able to do just that very soon!

The major projects involved are about done. Two extremely gracious and merciful son-in-laws will be over this weekend to install a window in the attic. I rely heavily on this kind of help, and I’m very appreciative of it! Me climbing very high on a ladder has never happened much, and most certainly not now at 56 years young. Hopefully we will have a chance to celebrate the window installation with a hot dog roast over the fire pit. Also a cooler weather kind of thing to do!

I have promised updates on the kitchen. After all the trim is back up, I will share again. For now, just a few little peeks at what has been happening. And may I say again…I absolutely love the kitchen!

The two pictures above are the north wall of the kitchen. The cupboards are all the same color, so something with the bright sunlight coming in the new kitchen door was making the butter-yellow take on a different hue. Note the cookie jar on the left counter. My mother enjoyed her grandmother’s cookies in this little gem.

My view out the new kitchen door, where there was once a window. This is looking northwest.

My view out the same door looking southwest. Our grandson worked very hard digging out this little pond area for me! We have seven goldfish, that aren’t so little anymore. They survived the frigid winter this past February, and they even had some babies. This year the plants had two yellow flowers. It’s been a pleasure to see this view out my kitchen!

I hope you are enjoying the beginning of September in your part of the world. For me, it’s always signaled the start of autumn. A time of cooler weather, more baking, and the delicious aroma of spices such as cinnamon, cloves, and apples.

Have a great day!

The header picture for this post is by: Image by Peter H from Pixabay