Sunday, August 14, 2011

Inside and Out Cabin Pictures: Ground Level

For those of you wondering what the interior of our cabin is looking like these days, here's some up to date photos, uncensored and not airbrushed...
Children washing the dog in the foreground

Living room/library/school/play room
Photos sure clean things up nicely don't they?  The carpet looks great!  It really is nice.  Before this carpet there was a painted plywood floor.  It was painted with Kilz brand paint, the type that seals in smell and mildew because seven dogs lived on, in, and around the cabin previous.  We wondered after we bought this cabin if the smell would ever go away and it did.  We still find traces of animal hair that sift down through the floorboards on occasion. 

In case you're wondering why there's a loveseat in front of the door... the door has been lovingly sprayed with foam to keep the cold out and it is one of those projects that has always been "on the back burner."  Now that Winter is around the corner I'm assuming it will stay foamed shut till next Spring!  No matter, there's no porch out there anyway.  It rotted away. 

One more word about my living room... a year ago it was also my kitchen, bedroom and nursery for the baby.  It's come along ways.  There used to be a bathroom in the corner with the world map hanging on the wall.  Whoever was here before us left evidence in the form of some black sewer pipe sticking out of the floor.  Nothing like a can of spray foam and a little bit of sawing to fix that.  Slap on some carpet pad and new carpet, and pull a couch over the top and poof!  A wonderful living room in which to dwell.  Wouldn't I be a great writer for a home remodeling magazine?! Oh, let me add one more detail about remodeling:  cardboard works great when you don't have the skills, time, or money for tongue in groove pine. Check out the cardboard I cut to cover the blue Styrofoam walls from the window to the wall, floor to ceiling.  It worked great and I hardly notice that it isn't wood!  I couldn't stand to look at the blue Styrofoam a second longer!  Power of association, I guess. (If you haven't read previous posts, blue Styrofoam is what everyone uses for their outhouse toilet seat.)

Anyhow, along the wall that the large couch sits, was my original kitchen.  We washed and painted this makeshift unit that was already here and put the Coleman cook stove up on the counter, along with a 7- gallon container for our water and a basin to wash in.
Our first kitchen, August 2010, in the corner of what is now the living room.

Who needs stair stepping exercises when you've got the real thing?
 We're still in the living room at this point...  notice the foamed door to the left?  Someone built these stairs right across one of the beautiful picture windows!  They cut through a major supporting beam to do it.  It works.  We added a baby gate for safety, not in the most usual way, but it works as well.
This is a TOYO stove made in Japan that runs on #1 grade diesel fuel. 
 We heat most of the cabin with this little heater.  In the children's rooms we have electric, oil filled radiant heaters.  The kitchen and room where we bathe also have these type of heaters.  The coldest the kitchen and bath ever got was 42 degrees Fahrenheit.  Not bad for being minus 40 F outside!
A bath room in the making...
This room used to be where the old forced air furnace dwelt.  The old water tank also lived here along with mounds of animal fur and bits of moldy dog food.  We parted with the furnace one day last fall when a piece of it literally exploded near my husbands face!  The timing mechanism was not functioning correctly.  It built up to much combustible fuel and when it did ignite, BOOM!  A metal cap came flying off just to the left of Daddy's face and out into the hallway.  I heard it and came running!
August 2010, looking at the old furnace and orange water tank

This bath tub is the one I shed tears over... we had been living at a campground for almost a month last August, when we bought this cabin and anything looked better than that.  We were hiking 200 yards through the trees to get a shower and use the restrooms while camping.  Which isn't really too big of a deal when you're just camping for fun.  BUT  when you're camping because you're homeless and trying to find a job and a home with five children in tow, it is very hard. 
2010 Kitchen in the sun while camping...

2010 Kitchen after a good rain...

So why would I shed tears over a bath tub?  It was up on two by fours and plywood just over a foot off the floor.  It was a damaged, scraped tub with a few cracks and some duct tape sticky patches that really bother me as much as I TRY to ignore them!  I know that Debi Pearl says in her book, "Created to Be His Help Meet," that I am to tuck in my lower lip and follow my visionary man but I couldn't hold back any longer!  After I cried I told my husband that I really was thankful for a place to bathe in at home but this whole trashed cabin, remodeling thing wasn't what I had imagined...

When we bought this cabin, there was no water.  We filled up containers in town and hauled them out.  We bought a family pass to the local swimming pool for showers.  We all felt humbled trying to shower in public and still be modest.  But we were so tired and exhausted from working and living that I reached a point of not even caring anymore but just happy to be clean once or twice a week if we had the time!  We did laundry at the local mat once a week averaging about $20.00.  This was two triple washes and drying time.  We've really learned how to cut back on laundry!

We had cold water into the kitchen two days before Thanksgiving!  We had a bath tub in at some point and were heating big black canners half full of water on our propane kitchen stove.  Then into the tub unit they were dumped and out it came into a five gallon bucket! 

August 2010 kitchen to be...

The kitchen now!  Complete with my dream child height counter
so they can mix and make and bake a cake with Mama!

Beautiful cabinets installed extra high for more shelf space...
lots of dishes on the counter...

Handsome husband cutting the homemade pizza on my
beautiful slate topped dining table
We have all learned so much and grown so much as a family this year.  As hard as this year has been, I wouldn't trade it for anything, for in it, my husband got saved one afternoon and a week later two of my oldest children were crying tears of repentance and called out to the Lord Jesus Christ.  I repented of my ungrateful attitude towards my husband, the military, family, etc, you name it!  Revival starts from within!  It spreads like wild fire within a family and there is so much power in repentance!  It's not popular and it doesn't sound exciting but what an adventure awaits those who dare! 

P.S.  Our lives aren't perfect.  We mess up daily and sometimes hourly.... but we love, forgive, and press on in the grace that God provides.  What a trip life is when following Jesus Christ.  It never ends.  So, our time here on earth doesn't last, for some it's already over before it hardly gets started but it's just a drop in the ocean of time.  We all have to die.  We can't avoid it.  So embrace life and play hard and play fair and be thankful and forgiving and tell everyone you love that you do love them and don't forget about your enemies as well.  The battle is over, we know who wins.  Join in the victory before it's all over.

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