Wednesday, April 2, 2008

When tragedy strikes...

...we start a project. I guess it is the coping mechanism of choice for the Malones! History repeats itself.

This time last year, I was 1 day away from going into labor with Finley. Who knew? I was discharged from the hospital on April 5th. Best I can recall, I had a hammer in my hand the very next day. We started with the half bathroom downstairs. Over the course of a month, we took out the toilet, took out the pedestal sink, removed the medicine cabinet/mirror, stripped the wallpaper and busted out the tile floor. I did that last part, with a hammer. It may not have been proper technique but it sure felt good, blisters and all! Once it was down to the sheet rock and subfloor, we started from scratch. Blake and my dad laid new backerboard and tile. I assembled the new cabinet with sink top. Lucy hung new wall paper. Blake cut and installed baseboards. We put the toilet back in, installed the new faucet, hung the new light, replaced the mirror and fixtures, connected the water, turned it on and called it done. A new "Powder Room" as Lucy says. It sounds so pretty that way! The finished product is worthy of such a title if I do say so myself!

Before...



After...
So here we are, a year later, walking a familiar path. What do I need? Another project. As we were driving home from the hospital on February 29th, I stated, "I don't care if we have to use some of the emergency fund, I want to get the yard done." That was all it took for us to be in full force project mode. This time, it was landscaping.

Actually, two gifts we received last spring were the impetus to start the task of landscaping our yard. Trees. One was given by my coworkers at Stallworth and the other by our parents. The idea was to give us something that would bloom around Finley's birthday every year. What a gift. The only problem was we had no idea where to place the trees we were being given. At that point, we had already cut down a huge Bradford Pear in the front yard. In back, were two more that needed to go. Our house had really large trees, in really poor places to accommodate the growing room they needed. Not wanting to repeat the mistakes of the previous homeowners, we had a landscape architect draw up plans to tell us what to put where. He was able to present us with the perfect plan for our yard.

Until last month, two trees, a Yoshino Cherry Blossom and a Japanese Zelkova, were all we had planted in the front yard. That has since changed. In the month of March, a large Dogwood was removed from the front yard and transplanted to the backyard. This allowed the guys to shape and till 3 beds in front of the house according to the architects plans. They are now the home to 3 trees and 50 shrubs and flowering plants. In back, a memory garden was designed to honor Finley. It has been created and filled with a variety of trees and plants. It will now serve to honor her little sister, Caroline, as well. I don't think Finley will mind...

Blake did all the work (digging, tilling, planting, etc) with A LOT of help from our dads and friends. Where was I in all of this? I painted the shutters. It was a much needed change and has made quite a difference in the look of our home. We no longer look like Green Bay Packers fans. Much better!

Before...
After...

So, that is what we have been doing. We have been busy. It has been good for me. My mind has been occupied.

Oh...the trees. They have done what our friends and family intended. There are beautiful blooms. They appeared 4 weeks after Caroline's birth and 1 week before Finley's birthday. I would like to think God had a hand in the timing of that! :)











4 comments:

Anonymous said...

It all looks BEAUTIFUL!!!! I love all the work you have done and I think that it really pays off! We are still thinking about you guys all the time and would love to see you soon....

sybil

bree said...

can i just say wow! that tree is beautiful!! i love the color of it. y'all have done a lot to the place and it looks great.

shelley and matt said...

Just gorgeous! Everything turned out to be so very beautiful! I am so happy that the tree bloomed in time for Finley's birthday. Thanks for sharing your words and pictures with us.

Ginger said...

Hello Danielle and Blake,
Your home is beautiful inside and outside. I really enjoyed seeing it Sunday and could feel the love in it.
Thank you so much for inviting us to see it.
It was a pleasure to actually meet you after hearing from LeAnne so many special things about your kindness towards her.

I think hard work is the best therepy.
Love,
LeAnne's mom