Thursday, December 19, 2013

Christmas Prep Takes Center Stage

Season's Greetings, everyone!

Sorry about falling off the map, there. I just recently arrived home from Texas, and since- through the winter- planes are essentially flying germ incubation tubes, I brought a nice cold home with me. Boo. So- this one is gonna be short and sweet folks. 

Most of our energy over the last week has been focused on getting presents and other Christmas items in order. Dan and I are both making some of our presents this year...and since we don't want to give away the surprise- I won't be putting up pics of the projects just yet. Okay, maybe a few vague ones. :)

So excited to finish this project!! :) You'll see after Christmassss!

A few friends that helped us with the wall raising came to visit last weekend. It's always fun to see the reactions of people- especially ones that were there and saw the very beginnings. Both Dave and Kevin were very impressed, remarking at how well the interior came out and how it seems a lot more spacious than they would have expected. It's that high ceiling! Makes a world of difference! Needless to say, Dan and I were both glowing with pride by the end of the visit. Thanks for coming to check it out, Dave and Kev! :) 

In other news, we are beginning to see the true temperatures of winter. This will be a good test of our tiny house and just how much our little electric radiator can handle. We have switched over to using that almost exclusively. As I mentioned before, the eco-heater is good until it gets to be about 25 degrees out. Then we need something more powerful. While I was enjoying the mild climate of Texas, here at home hit the lowest we have seen yet this winter. Dan woke up to single digits- and even with the heater on medium- it still stayed warm...enough...haha. To us, this means we should not feel limited in where to find a more final resting place for the house. We have toyed with the idea of New Hampshire or even Maine. Exactly when that will happen is unclear. We still have a lot to get in order before finding our own land. BUT, just knowing we can handle colder temperatures is nice- it does not relegate us to the gentler climates of the South. 

Brr! This was first thing in the morning.
It heats up pretty quick once we turn lights
on and start cooking some breakfast. 

Up next, after the holidays probably, we plan to replace the counter top portions of the stair storage. We hee'd and haw'd about leaving it just pine or staining, or even painting it. We were worried a solid color would be too much and might make the place seem darker or smaller, but now that we have had ample opportunity to stare at how gross and dirty these counter tops get. Bare pine shows EVERYTHINNNG. Since this is a very busy, multi-purpose surface- we use it as a working space, a computer space, a food prep space, then we also crawl up it to get to the loft- we have decided to make the change.  

We plan to make a wash with some of the remaining brown paint I used on the rafters and the door in the kitchen. (Much like the kitchen counters - except not green this time!) Once we have applied the wash, we are also going to use a water-based poly to seal it. We finally broke down and decided this was an area that needed it. We wanted to use a natural product, but this being such a high traffic area that constantly needs wiping and scrubbing- makes it hard to find a suitable finish. The tung oil just wasn't cutting it. Either we need a hundred more coats, or it's just not the right stuff for the area. We also toyed with the idea of sealing the wood ourselves using a natural wax. But, even then, we would need to re-apply every month or so to maintain the seal. I do feel kind of guilty about it, but we've made so many efforts in other areas of the house and our lives to cut down on un-natural products- that I'm giving us a little slack on this one.

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  1. Have you thought about wrapping the counter in stainless steel? I know Jay Shafer does that on a lot of his projects, and it works pretty well with the white pine-clad aesthetic. I'm not sure what the detail looks like though.

  2. Hi Jonathan, yes we did consider doing that, but opted for the stained wood. We simply preferred the wood look over the stainless, and it was a matter of time constraints for us- finding an outfit that can do the job for a decent price and a decent time frame didn't work out. Thanks for reading! :)