Weekend Warrior Women

It’s fair to say that I’m genetically predisposed to “working with my hands”, so to speak, a trait I inherited  directly from my grandmothers that has been nurtured by the constant support and encouragement from my mother (who, it should be noted, is also not afraid to use a hatchet when the situation calls for it.) I am eternally grateful to have been raised by such strong, beautiful, hard-working, not-afraid-to-get-dirty women, but never so much as when two of them come up to spend a day working with me on the Liberty House.

My grandmother just moved back to the area from Florida and is tackling a load of moving and house projects herself, but she found the time to come up Saturday and insisted on learning how to use the riding mower.


In this picture: My 85 year old grandmother mowing my lawn, and some guy with a parachute and a bigass fan attached to his back. I’m not sure which is more crazy.


My mom, grandma and I also tackled the garden in the front of the house. The bushes and weeds were becoming alarmingly overgrown…


While I hauled wheelbarrows full of weeds and clippings to the dumpster to the dumpster my grandma got the bushes under control and my mom dealt with the walkway leading to the porch.


We actually uncovered another little pathway in the garden:


And found a hidden spigot shaped like a frog, which I totally love.


There was a ton of old, useless weed fabric under the mulch and once all of that came up and we turned the mulch over, things really started shaping up.


I’ve never been much of a flag person, but I found a flag bracket on the front porch and then saw these American flags at Lowe’s and it felt like just the thing that Liberty house needed.


After several hours of yardwork my mom and I were wilting like delicate flowers, and my grandma was all, “What? You guys are tired?” but we still got her to spend some time relaxing at the picnic table in the shade…


Which was just the perfect way to end a great day. I cant even tell you how nice it is to have the front of the house mostly under control.


And it’s great motivation to start planning the two big exterior projects I’m going to tackle in June – repainting the porch and deck, and replacing some siding on the back of the house. However there is one outdoor project that is definitely first on the list…


Yup. That’s the huge pile of collapsed barn that the bank mandated must be cleaned up and that I need to move to make room for some donkeys. There’s definitely going to be a barn burning party around here this weekend!

25 Responses

  1. You have such a beautiful house! If I weren’t 4 hours away and tackling my own freshly-purchased home, I’d love to see it. Your mother and grandmother sound awesome!

  2. Boo! I totally would come help/hang out except I am going up to Traverse City for the beginning part of the weekend to work at the Bayshore Marathon (it’s on Saturday). Bummed. Hope you guys have a good time though!

  3. Kit,

    What’s your plan for this house in the long run?

    Do you plan to flip after a few years, or is this a long term house?

    1. Long term, for sure! If I never buy another house to live in, I would be thrilled. (I say that every time, of course, but this one has years of projects to keep me busy.)

  4. PS… if I was still in the AA area, I’d be so down with burning a barn.

    Be safe!

  5. If we had only known about this in advance… we’re guides for a local open house tour that raises money for our symphony this weekend. From a quick glance at the map, I’d guess we are about 7-8 hours away (we live in Ontario). It could have been fun!!!

  6. Never met you, but we’d so be there for a big ass barn burning if we didn’t live in Chicago…and have our own destruction project planned for the weekend at my folk’s lakehouse. 🙂

  7. Sounds like fun except for the part that I’m in CT. The 3 of you did some amazing work!

  8. Like everybody else, I would SO be there if I was within driving distance. Sadly, I’m in the Kansas City area. Beer, destruction, and a huge fire–sounds like fun! Good luck and be safe. Be sure you call the fire department to check if you need a burn permit.

  9. Your house is looking great! I’m loving the arched windows and the metal stars above them – how cool! And the sawn-baluster skirting on your porch!!! And the fan brackets with finial drops on your porch….I wonder if there were ever spandrels in between them. It’s all looking lovely!
    I’m gonna try to recreate fretwork/gingerbread for my house this summer….I’ll have to get a blog up and running [again] and post pics 🙂

    1. Those stars are actually functional “star bolts” that are threaded to cables that run through the house. This was used to remove or prevent bulging in brick houses!

  10. …if I weren’t a half a continent away. Would love to help and see that wonderful house!

  11. I would be there with bells on if I lived closer! Sounds like a good time.

    The front is looking really good! Yews can easily be kept in shape with shearing but be careful not to take off too much. Weed fabric is useless if you’re using mulch on top. It’s so much easier to just have a thick 3″ layer of mulch. If we ever do meet up I have dozens of fun shade perennials I could divide for you to fill in the rest of the beds.

  12. You had some terrific and beautiful (seriously your family is gorgeous!) help and the landscaping is looking great! I am a good 10-12 hours away or I would love a barn burning party! Have a great time!

  13. What fun and how great to have two of your favorite people helping you out on the yardwork!

    Detroit was my adopted city for 10 years. Your invitation would be a great excuse to get back for a visit. I’d even bring the potato salad. I can’t make it, but I hope you get tons done and have a blast doing it!

  14. Colorado to Michigan sounds like a road trip I’d like to take someday – sorry it can’t be this weekend! Happy (and safe) burning!

  15. Don’t forget to rescue the big barn beams from that pile, they will surely come in handy for something, maybe the pergola at the patio? Have water handy, don’t burn the pasture! Ha!

    1. Most of those beams and the good weathered barn wood will be salvaged. Plenty of use for those! There’s a lot of OSB and other things for the burn pile though.

  16. (Added) Congratulations to ALL the talented ladies.
    That guy with the bigass fan on his back, hanging from the parawing, discovered that you don’t really need a pilot’s license to fly. I vote for wings, any day!

  17. What a great, productive day. It looks like you have a special relationship with your Mom and Grandma. So nice to have all that support. BTW, I totally covet that frog spigot! I have a frog hose hanger, and I think they were meant to be together.

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