Surprised?  It’s true…for the last 17 years our living room, dining room and kitchen have been in a basement.  A basement with just one small window…can we say depressing? When we purchased the farm, I found a set of plans rolled up on the kitchen counter.  It was a lovely plan.  IMG_20160106_102155405There’s just one problem….they built the 2 story portion but never built the ranch portion.  I’ve heard “tales” about why…job change, military transfer, property was foreclosed on…I don’t know if we will ever know the truth.

The two story section contains the bedrooms upstairs and downstairs is a large room, a very small room, a utility closet, a small bathroom and small laundry room. The plans show the large room as a game room with a wet bar.

The small room has served many purposes over the last 17 years.  When I was homeschooling three boys at the same time, it was our homeschooling room, it has also been a study and an office.

The large room, with one tiny window, has always been the living room, dining room and kitchen. Seriously.  Can some of you relate? (Hi Lynn in ND!)

The entire space is 20 feet by 19 feet.  This is where I raised 4 boys, cooked, entertained company, and held classes for soap making and herbal medicine.

Essentially, I have my dining room table, that seats 12, in the middle of my kitchen floor. There is a 2 foot path around it when no one is sitting at the table.  Our living room floor space consists of about 7 x 9 feet.  When our entire family is here for dinner, which is fairly often,  there are 14 people needing a place to sit.  Now there are grandchildren needing floor space! Crowded doesn’t even begin to describe it.

However, we’ve never let it stop us from getting together  or having friends over!  We shove furniture this way and that, set up folding chairs, add a table into the living room so we can all sit together…whatever it takes. We have had huge gatherings here – 42 people one time…people sat on laps, sat on the stairs going up and stood against the wall – and we had a lot of fun despite the size!IMG_20141220_175558462Here we are at Hanukkah last year, I am leaning against the kitchen counter shooting across all three “rooms”…just a wee bit crowded for 14 people don’t you think? There isn’t a coat closet so anything people bring over goes on the floor behind the green chair on the right.  That’s where the door leading out of the basement is so it’s easy to drop your stuff and come in.

I’ve been grateful for this space and we’ve made it work for all these years…but…things are about to change!

Last summer my mama had a bad fall…there have been many falls leading up to this one but this time she fell backwards down some stairs and landed on cement.  Thankfully, she didn’t break anything but we both realized that she needed a little more help than I could give her living across the road from each other.

So, the Farmer and I began planning on how to move my mama into our home.  Mama can’t do steps anymore and our home is on three levels. The middle level is where the ranch should have been started but it is just a 7 foot wide hallway.

The Farmer began drawing up some plans. He has some experience with this.  Me?  Not so much. We were planning on adding a bedroom and bath for my mama. Then the Farmer pointed out that she would still be excluded from the living area in the basement because she couldn’t get down the stairs. He didn’t find that acceptable so he began re-figuring the plans.

By the time he was done, we had a nice family room, a dream kitchen and a master suite for my mama which includes a sitting room! Be still my heart!  Did you notice that part about a dream kitchen? He has spent over a year watching me work around that giant table in the middle of my kitchen, he noticed how hard it was to have more than one person in the kitchen, he noticed the lack of cabinets and drawers and he even noticed that it was a galley style kitchen but with only one side – this requires lots of walking back and forth.  What man gets that?

Mine does 🙂


He drew out the most beautiful kitchen with wide walk ways and a huge island in the middle. A huge window over the sink that looks out on our mountain, windows on the side walls, storage galore and a divine layout that will make moving around the kitchen a pleasure.

Then he added a surprise…something I’ve dreamed of for 25 years!  I’ll share more about her when I can put her picture up!