Tuesday, May 18, 2010

{Curb Appeal}

It's been several weeks since we spruced up our home's curb appeal. I've always loved our little home...
It was built in 1952 by locally famous architect, William Caton. Most of his homes have an adorable stone cottage look. Ours definitely does...when I'm giving clients directions to my house, I always say "it's the tan and stone cottage." I will miss that one day. One of the characteristics of a Caton home that I'm not a big fan of: the tiny kitchens. Ours definitely has that too! We've lived here for eight years.

There is even a Caton Legacy Architectural Driving tour available. I just found a link for this, and I remember seeing something about it when I worked at the Art Center. I'm not sure I even know all of the Caton homes in the area. I might have to take the tour myself. Here is another one of his homes, that happens to be on the market right now.

{our first home}
Here is what our home looked like in 2002 when we bought it:

The picture of us on the bottom right was taken by my friend, Audra. It was the morning after our wedding, when her and her hubby, Kane, picked us up to take us to the airport! So sweet of them! I've included it to show what the flower beds along the drive way looked like in 2002. (I don't really remember them, but looks like nothin' but dirt, and you can even see the black weed paper peeking through). p.s. don't we look so young??

In 2004 we got rid of the white and brown vertical siding (we were starting to have a lot of moisture problems with the very old siding), and replaced it with Hardi-plank siding, all new windows, guttering, roof and shutters.

The pictures below were taken the Spring we found out we were pregnant with Barrett.
2007. I can't believe how much some of the shrubs have grown since then.

In April, we got rid of all our mulch and filled our flowerbeds with river rock. We've been replacing mulch every year since we moved in. It would look great for a week, then would start to fade, wash away onto the driveway and sidewalks, and fill with weeds. After this Winter, they were nothing but "dirt" beds, with a few pieces of mulch. We are VERY happy with the way the river rock turned out. We had always wanted to do it, but figured it would be really expensive. Really, it was very inexpensive for the area we filled...and the money we'll save not buying 10+ bags of mulch every Spring! So worth it for me!! And, thanks to the sweet lady at the local landscaping place (I just love small town businesses), we saved a lot of money! She recommended using the smaller (and much cheaper) pea gravel to fill in the base of all the beds, then sprinkling the larger river rock over that. It worked PERFECTLY!! We ended up getting two tons of the pea gravel, and then 1/2 ton of the river rock. We even have some of the river rock left, in case we need to fill-in spots later.

After the rock was complete, we trimmed up all our shrubs, and got some new Hostas for the front bed (thanks to Justin's sister for those).

Here are the {after} shots

That middle shrub is dying a slow death.
Any green thumbs out there that can help me save it?!? It might have to be replaced soon.


{Above} Little metal stand I got from Mamo several years ago. It was a dark green, but I used some hammertone spray paint on it. Sorry, no before pictures! I will get better at that!!

{Above} The area behind our carport where my Vica plants grow wild!! We had enough rock to fill it in, even though we weren't planning to. In the background, you can sorta see the leftover river rock pile. We just made a little barrier wall with some large stones we had (against the side of the shed), and filled it with the river rock.

BEFORE of driveway flower beds: 2007

AFTER: 2010
I didn't realize how much the shrubs had all grown!
I would say "yay, me"...but I don't think I had much to do with it.

{Above} My little wagon desperately needs a paint job. It used to be a barn red color (as seen in 2007 picture above) Any volunteers to fix that?!? And, behind the wagon...another shrub dying a slow death. I obviously DO NOT have a green thumb!

{Above: Left} We painted the front door to match the shutters in 2004 when we did the siding, and also added the storm door. The storm door is always filled with sweet little fingerprints! I like it that way :) We also added the new ceiling light, black mailbox (goodbye gold), and address numbers at that time. I got the Address plaque from Lillian Vernon online. The numbers were really light when it came, so I had to paint over them with a brighter white. I love my little metal milk jug. It came from one of my dad's storage units. (The renters didn't pay for many months,  then left town, and never came back for their stuff. I don't remember what color it was, but I used a vintage leather faux paint kit on it. That was several years ago, and it needs some freshening up.

{Above: Right} The front flower bed. Used to have a giant weed strange plant right under the center of the window. We took that and some mums out, and replaced them with Kim's Hostas. It's a nice shady spot for them, and they seem to be doing great! Notice the lovely moisture growing in the window!! Great news: They came and replaced it TODAY! It's nice and shiny and beautiful again!

This large from window used to just be a little three-foot wide window! When we did the siding, we extended it to the right, making it double the size (or more) ...and it's been so nice to have all that extra natural light!

:: Pause during outdoor {after} photos to squat and take a poppy in the middle of the yard ::

Yep, he's my son!!
I took his picture (he will be horribly embarrassed in 12 years),
then I yelled across the front yard "are you pooping, Barrett?" He quickly replied "NO!"

Sunday night, we enjoyed my Mother's Day gift for the first time!
It was the perfect evening for it...

I can't wait to roast hot dogs and marshmallows on it...
and enjoy a cold beer, while we visit with friends and family.

I'm loving my new curb appeal and outdoor spaces!


  1. It looks so cozy. You have an adorable little home. The river rock really makes a difference.

  2. I've always admired your home, driving by it for years and think to myself..how adorable!

  3. Don't know what you are talking about - looks like you definitly have a green thumb! Your house is so cute, and your landscaping fits it perfectly!

    BTW, I have free booklets on Winfield's Caton homes driving tour - stop by sometime to pick one up!


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