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Updated Front Landscaping

Another one of our projects in quarantine regarded our front landscaping.

Here is a picture of the front of the house on the day we moved in:

Since then, everything died.

I was not blessed with a gardener's skill, unfortunately. With that said though, Nick and I still value curb appeal. It just now required extremely low maintenance plants that were forgiving and easy.

So one afternoon, armed with $183 in new plants from our local garden center, Landen eagerly used our tractor to rip out the two dead bushes. We added new lanterns to the beds, and planted flowers. Landen was a huge help.


We planted a trio of day lillies in place of the dead shrubs.

Four hibiscus were planted in the longer bed. A pair of bright pink ones bloom beneath the guest room window.

And the new lanterns we installed, which are incredibly bright. We have them set on a timer.

Bye, Bye Beige!

Let's start at the beginning.

On the day we moved in, the walls in the kitchen and along the back of the living room where a boring, textured beige. You've seen this picture quite a few times by now:

We slowly began updating to suit our style and preferences.

New flush mount here ...

New cabinet and drawer pulls there ...

Oh, what's that you see? A deep moody blue was sampled next.


One of the projects we tackled during quarantine involved a lot of paint. That beige had to go!

First up, the back wall with our big, beautiful picture windows received a few coats of that deep, moody blue.

I didn't realize how big of a pain in the ass it would be to paint an eggshell sheen over that textured, beige Ralph Lauren color. We used rollers with 3/4" nap, and painted long strokes from the floor to the ceiling after edging. The rollers had to be fully saturated with paint, and the new strokes had to overlap the old in order to ensure an even sheen. It was tedious work. But, I also absolutely refused to skim coat. In the end though, I loved the result.

The rest of the walls in the kitchen and garage entry were painted a basic gray. This combination worked well with the colors in our new tile floor.


Remember what the goofy closet looked like before?

After we installed the pull-out drawer for the bins in the pantry and removed the pocket door, I put a fresh coat of gray paint inside the closet as well.

Our most-used coats will hang here, eventually. We bought a Command hook for the broom, and the shelf holds a basket for Nick's shoe shine supplies, and our 'social distance' masks, gloves and wipes for the pandemic. Madelyn is considered high-risk, so we did what was necessary to keep her healthy. I like how simple and straightforward it is. I'm still trying to figure out a system for storing and drying our winter clothing when the season Minnesota is famous for comes to town.

I don't dare show the floor of the closet since it's piled with our shoes. Here's a picture of my new runner, which I LOVE, instead -

(I found it at Home Goods.)


And finally, we updated the rest of the lighting in the kitchen, dinette, living room and entry space. I love Edison bulbs, and we found lights in a finish that matches the cabinet and drawer pulls.

This light hangs above the runner in the entry.

This spot quickly became my favorite in the entire house. I adore how nicely the door and windows frame the woods that surround our property, and that blue ties it all together. It makes our deck look all the more inviting too.

This pendant hangs above the sink. You can also see the new gray paint color.

We replaced the boring old ceiling fan, ensuring the new one had lights!

It was nice to have these projects to work on while we stayed safely at home.