Monday, January 13, 2014

Staging the House for Selling

Alright... we are on Operation: Sell This House. If you just happen to be at my house while I'm cleaning, I just might give you something. Trying to de-clutter the house is no joke. Last weekend, I sent all the kids' big toy items to live over at Mimi and Poppa's house. Mom says it feels like Chuck-E-Cheese at her place now.

Play Kitchen in our Dining Room
But I am SO thankful that she is allowing me to keep their big toys over there. They still get to play with them while I don't have them taking space in the house.

The dining room looks totally different without the play kitchen in there.

Dining Room Now

And if you're the observant type, you'll notice more things missing from the dining room. The chandelier shade was taken down. I didn't want viewers to think it was permanent. I used it to cover the chandelier I didn't like. Maybe someone else likes the chandelier and not the shade.

Dining Room - July 2013
The red chairs that I had in the dining room got moved to the Bonus Room upstairs.

Red Chairs back in 2012
Not bad and don't take up much room.

Red Chairs 2014

The red chairs have had many homes. They were chairs that went with the table I have currently in the kitchen, and were from my childhood. I made cushions out of pillows for them back in 2009. They've always lived behind the couch, but when I moved the sofa table to the foyer, they were re-homed to the dining room.

This little nook looks different, too.

There use to be a table behind it that I kept the boys' toys on. Even though it was skinny, it took away the feeling of space. It feels bigger now.

And that table was moved to the upstairs bathroom!

That bathroom is bigger than you expect. It's big enough to put a table in there!

The table use to be my foyer table. When I moved the sofa table to the foyer after its makeover, I moved the foyer table to the living room.

Foyer Table 2010
I was originally taking the chairs and table upstairs to put in the attic, but while I was there, I wondered if I could place them somewhere functional.

While I was up there, I de-cluttered the toy shelves.

To me, it's not functional, but magazines do it all the time.

And if I've caught you off guard... we're moving! I made a tab on here for how we are selling our house. Last year we bought a lot in our current neighborhood. The deal was too good to pass up. How everything lined up and worked out was definitely through God's hands. Even if we didn't build on it, we could turn around and sell it.

We are in the process of selling our house and then we will begin building our new one. The new house will be for both my family and my parents. Once we have moved them in, we will work on selling their house (also, in the same neighborhood.) Currently, we are in the very beginning phase of design. We have a budget to stick with and that is currently guiding us. I'm very excited. I will definitely be keeping you up to date on each process. May 2014 be a great year!

Friday, January 3, 2014

Crepe Murder

The Grumpy Gardner would be so proud of me.

He always has articles on "Crepe Murder" which is when people inaccurately trim branches of a crepe myrtle tree.

I never knew it was wrong to slice the tree in half. Everywhere I looked, professional landscapers were chopping them. At least, they call themselves professional.

Cracker Barrel obviously hires someone that doesn't know what they are doing. I drove by three Cracker Barrels, all in different, but close cities, and all their crepe myrtle trees had been murdered.

I don't know how I stumbled on the Grumpy Gardner from Southern Living, but it was back when we first moved into our house. I learned a lot about yard work through him.

With my crepe myrtles starting off VERY small, I've had to groom them each year. But they are finally their mature height and they are so easy. While my family was in town, I had my nieces and sisters helping pick up the branches I cut off.

I didn't take a chainsaw to them, I just shaped them a little. Crepe Myrtles are similar to hydrangeas in that they bloom on new wood.

I can remember one year going to a park and seeing their Crepe Myrtles chainsawed to two feet above the ground! The trunks were so big, yet they were so short. I couldn't imagine how ugly it might look in the summer.

I noticed the front of our neighborhood had their crepe myrtles trimmed this week and they weren't lopped off. Someone knew about crepe murder!

Neighborhood Trees
So, I'm spreading the word ... don't commit crepe murder. Your tree will look funny, especially as it matures. You'll have thick tree trunks with tiny branches and the heavy flowers will make the branches droop because they are not strong enough to support them.

If you have a really tall variety of crepe myrtle and it's too thick where you can reach to trim, it's better off to just leave it untrimmed. There will still be some blooms, just not a whole lot. See if you can get a tall ladder or professional to thin it out for you.

Un-cut Crepe Myrtles

And now is the time to trim the trees, before they get their new growth in Spring. And if you have bug drench, now is a good time to put it on the crepe myrtles and other bug-loving plants. Japanese beetles love our crepe myrtles, but when we use the drench, we no longer have them.

I'm ready for Spring so I can see my trees with leaves on them again!

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