Blog Love: Homesteading and Farm Families Edition

In case you haven’t noticed, all the home-remodeling, fair season, and almost-autumn weather has really put me in the mood for being out in the country air. I’ve been daydreaming a lot about my own little homestead, and my dream of having a chicken coop coming true (next summer!). I’ve been researching and setting goals, and along the way I’ve found quite a few blogs that I find incredibly inspiring. I thought I’d share a few with you…

Blog Love: Homesteading & Farm Families Edition // Life In Beta

DIY Diva

I first came across this blog looking at home renovation stuff, but then I read further and found that the blog author, Kit, also has a little farm she runs herself too. She’s a one-woman powerhouse and I am so in awe of all her DIY projects. Oh – and her post about buying a new tractor is now making me lust after farm equipment. (Which… WTF is happening to me?!)

The Prairie Homestead

Jill’s blog is absolutely jam-packed with information. I can’t even tell you how many hours this past weekend I spent reading her posts. A few of my favorite reads were her goats 101 series and her directions for making homemade stevia extract (I had no idea you could do that!). I seriously want an internship to go work on her farm!

Faulk Farmstead

Another amazing, beautiful farming-family! (Seriously, look at their bio pic – isn’t that just the greatest family photo EVER?) I love the Mel’s REAL writing on this blog, like in the latest post, Is Homesteading Worth All Of the Hard Work? (Shhh, spoiler: the answer is yes.)

Green Eggs & Goats

I love this quote from the about page: “[…] homesteading is a lot like Margaritaville. It’s more of a state of mind than an actual place.” YES! Her post, The Great Skim Milk Hoax is well worth a read. (I’m not sure of my opinion on the subject yet, but she has some great perspective on the topic.)

Fresh Eggs Daily ®

This blog focuses primarily on chicken-keeping. Lisa’s recent posts on freezing fresh herbs for chicken-treats and backyard chicken-keeping etiquette may just come in handy next year when my coop is ready!

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Wordless Wednesday

Ben's First Day of Kindergarten // Life In Beta

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Bathroom Remodel Progress

Bathroom Remodel... Mess // Life In Beta

Ten years ago if I’d told you I spent the weekend on my knees in the bathroom, it would have meant I’d had QUITE a weekend of partying. Now that I’m older, wiser, and the proud owner of a fixer-upper home, it has nothing to do with drinking and everything to do with spending hours tearing up layers of old vinyl tile off a concrete floor!

(Good times.)

Mike and I decided to divide and conquer Saturday morning, especially because the bathroom is tiny and it’s hard to work with more than one person in there. So he started painting primer in the living room while I worked in the bathroom.

My first task was to scrub the floor. My plan was to put down the new vinyl stick-down tile ON TOP of the existing tile. It just needed to be cleaned so there weren’t any lumps from debris. I started to scrub the floor, and pull up some double-stick tape that was on it to hold a rug in place … when I pulled the tape, an entire tile pulled up with it. I tugged at the corner of the next tile over, and it popped right off too.

Tile Work // Life In Beta

Well, shoot. At that point, there was no choice but to start pulling up tile. So that’s what I did … for HOURS. I probably should have gone to my parents’ house and borrowed their heat gun, but I was feeling stubborn. So I stood, sat, and kneeled, chipping away at the tile with a broken putty knife and a hammer.

When I needed a break from working on the cement floor, I switched off to painting. I did the bottoms of the walls in grey first, then busted out the purple paint for the top. (I was saving the most exciting for last.) I was seriously worried the first few passes with that purple. I’ve never committed to such a saturated wall pait color before! I even called Mike in to ask him if we were REALLY sure…

Scraping up a wax ring (ugh) // Life In Beta

We also ripped out the old toilet. This is the second time in the last year that I’ve lifted a toilet and had to scrape out a nasty old wax ring. The silver lining is that removing and installing toilets are one of the easier “large scale” home-DIY projects I’ve ever tackled. (It’s just … yucky.)

Mike was a little skeptical about installing the new toilet ourselves without consulting anyone for help. I’d already replaced a wax ring with my dad a few months prior, so I felt pretty confident it wouldn’t be hard. Besides, I reasoned, there were directions on the side of the box — and if the directions were simple enough to only require 6 steps (photos only, no words), it couldn’t possibly be THAT hard.

Installing a new toilet // Life In Beta

Turned out, it was SUPER easy! I went back on Sunday and Monday just to double and triple check that everything was still working and that there were no leaks, and everything was just fine!

Installing new toilet // Life In Beta

So what’s left?

  • Finish laying the new flooring. – I was running out of time and energy so I only put down the first few tiles under where the toilet needed to be installed.
  • Hang and paint the wallpaper border. – This will be my first time attempting to wallpaper. Wish me luck! (I’m glad it’s only a border, and I only have maybe 6 feet total do…)
  • Finish painting. – Most of the painting is done, but some spots need a second coat or touch-up.
  • Paint the linen closet doors. – The linen closet has two louvered doors that I’ve been avoiding; I’m hoping we’ll get some nice weather so I can take them out and spray them along with some other things that need spray painting.
  • Install the new vanity, sink and faucet. – This is just waiting on having some plumbing shifted. I have someone coming to take a look at that soon. *fingers crossed*
  • Hang the mirror and medicine cabinet. – We’re getting a new cabinet for over the toilet and using the mirror we already have (though we may add a frame to it).

Though the remaining to-do’s look like quite a list, we’ve really come a long way, and I am super excited to share the finished results with you — hopefully soon!

Bathroom remodel progress // Life In Beta

Paint: Behr “White Fur” / Olympic “Tin Lizzie” / Glidden “Silver Cloud”

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