tour my house.

The house I share with Mr. Q was built in 1904 and was originally the farmhouse for a dairy farm.  Over the years the farmland surrounding it was developed and now we live in a suburban neighborhood of split level and ranch style houses.  In addition to the house, we have a carriage house and a small potting shed.

We have lived here for over 30 years.  We fell in love with our house the moment we walked in the door.  Our real estate agent tried to talk us out of it, trying to convince us that we didn’t want an ‘old’ house.  Oh yes we did!  And we have never regretted our choice.




fall house


happy holidays


The carriage house.

A carriage house is an outbuilding which was originally built to house horse-drawn carriages and the related tack.

We love our carriage house.  It has the original carriage house doors that open to the side and drive Mr. Q crazy in the winter when they get frozen shut sometimes (update:  we corrected this problem by raising the doors, grading the gravel driveway in front of them, and adding gutters in 2022).

In the summer I do all of my furniture restyling out here.  I used to hold occasional Carriage House Sales here, but I gave those up a few years back.

It has a 2nd floor that we use for storing our deck furniture (and the neighbors deck furniture) in the winter.


The potting shed (formerly the photo cottage).

My photo cottage was originally just a play house out back that was probably built on the foundation of some sort of farm out-building.  Since we’ve been here it has served as a potting shed, and as a summer house when I had it fixed up as a spot for hanging out and reading, and in June of 2014 I converted it into the ‘photo cottage’, an area devoted to staging furniture and other items for blog photos.

You can read more about the transformation of the photo cottage in this post, and this post.

But as it turned out, the lighting wasn’t quite right for staging furniture photos, so in summer of 2022 I changed it back into a potting shed.

I may not do any actual potting out there, but it was fun to decorate and will make a great spot for storing gardening supplies.


The deck.

When we first moved into our house, the deck was very traditional with a railing around the perimeter.  About 15 years ago we ripped off the railing and put up a pergola and grew a grape vine on it.  Ultimately, the grape vine was extremely messy overhead and it drew in critters; bees, Japanese beetles, raccoons.  Also, the shade it provided led to premature rotting of the deck boards because they didn’t dry out properly after a rain.  So, a few years back we had the deck rebuilt.  This time with no pergola, and no railings (it’s only about 2′ off the ground, no railing necessary).  It’s perfect for us now, and we use it all the time.  In the summer we eat dinner out here nearly every evening.

My friend Sue sewed drop cloth slip covers for the chairs and I stenciled them with grain sack stripes.


The garden.

After retiring from my day job at the end of 2021, I found myself with a lot more time to devote to gardening.  I even added a regular weekly gardening post to the blog, Sunday mornings in the garden.

Mine is a zone 4b garden, and most of it is shady.

I don’t share quite as many garden posts in the winter, but every now and then I share a post about our snowy landscape.

You can check out a tour of my garden here, and all of those Sunday morning posts here.


The front porch.

The front porch is perfect for reading in the evening, or sitting and watching a good thunderstorm in summer.

It also makes a great walk-in fridge in the winter.

I updated the farmhouse table at the opposite end of the porch in 2019.  It provides a convenient, well lit spot for taking close up photos of things.  Plus I just love the way it looks now with its chippy Miss Mustard Seed milk paint in Linen.

I had planned to sell the black cupboard, but once I added a Prima Marketing transfer to the inside back I decided I couldn’t part with it.


The living room.

I revamped our living room in February 2019.  The walls got painted in a deep charcoal grey which feels super cozy in the winter, and cool and shady in the summer.

The sectional isn’t exactly the most fabulous style, but it’s incredibly functional for us.  I’ve dressed it up a bit with some stenciled throw pillows.

My favorite thing in the living room are the shelves full of my favorite vintage finds.


The piano room.

The piano room is the room that would traditionally have been the formal dining room.  We had it set up as a dining room for at least 15 years and ate there very rarely.  When I got the chance to bring in a baby grand piano, I jumped on it.  Do I play?  Well, no.  I’d like to one day though.  In the meantime, it’s fantastic for folding laundry, working on crafts, jig saw puzzles, painting stuff (with numerous drop cloths), and it makes a fantastic bar for parties.  I procrastinated on painting it for numerous years but finally tackled it in early 2019.  I don’t know what I was afraid of, it wasn’t that hard to do and I love how it looks now.

As part of my 2019 Magic Wand Decorating Project we added faux board and batten paneling to the walls.  This room is separated from the living room by an arched opening, so we also carried the dark grey paint from there to the upper portion of these walls.

I suspect a lot of people think the stained glass window in this room is original to the house but it isn’t.  I made it myself shortly after we moved in.

There was just a plain glass window in that space, but I’m betting that once upon a time there was an amazing piece of original leaded or stained glass there.  Did it break?  Did a previous home owner take it with them?  Who knows.

This room also houses my Specimens Cupboard.  This piece is on wheels so that I can easily move it out of this spot because this is the blank wall where I stage all of my furniture photos in the winter.

 I know ceiling fans aren’t popular these days, but in an older house with no central air conditioning they are life savers.  I snazzed up this inexpensive fan by adding some IOD transfers to the glass globes.


The q branch.


This is the room where I write my blog and store a lot of my crafting supplies.  I gave the room a much needed makeover in January 2015.

That makeover included adding the Rooster cupboard which is painted in Miss Mustard Seed milk paint for that fabulous chippy finish.

I added a giant English cupboard to the room in September 2017.  It’s perfect for stashing all of my painting supplies out of sight.

I’m storing some of my vintage Christmas ornament non-collection (because I swear I’m not a collector!) in the stack of old suitcases.


The dining room.

Our dining room is entirely clad in wood that was salvaged from an old barn that was torn down.  This room was added on to the rear of our house some time in the 70’s.  I’ve debated painting it white over the years, but have never been able to bring myself to do so.  That original barn wood paint job has a beautiful patina that could not be replicated if we ever painted it.  I’ve been slowly working on lightening up the room in other ways starting with this giant Welsh cupboard that holds my ironstone …

I’ve painted and recovered a set of 4 cane back dining chairs

chair seats

I added player piano music wallpaper on either side of the window, and I whitewashed the cedar table that Mr. Q built for us …

This bench that was made out of a bed from Belgium sits in the space next to the door that leads to the deck.


The kitchen.

Our kitchen has the original farmhouse cabinets that are over 100 years old and still function perfectly well.  We do without some mod cons, no dishwasher, no disposal, no ice maker.  That’s OK, we don’t cook much.  It works well for us.  Read more about it and view a comical 1980’s ‘before’ picture here.


The pantry.

The pantry was an embarrassing mess up until a few years ago when I decided it was high time to fab it up.  My main motivation was putting in a door with a window so we could let some of that light into the kitchen.  You can read more about the pantry here.


The world’s smallest bathroom.

Living in a 1904 farmhouse means accepting the fact that your bathroom is going to be less than luxurious, and also located right off the kitchen.  It’s not ideal, but we make it work.

 See a full, but very short tour of our bathroom here.


The master bedroom.

Our master bedroom underwent a makeover in August 2017.  We had the floors refinished and we added a ship lap wall.  We modified a full sized antique headboard to fit our queen sized bed.

I refreshed a vintage cane back bench for the foot of the bed.

I repainted the cupboard that stores my clothing.

I also repainted our mismatched bedside tables.


The travel gallery.

Our upstairs hallway has been devoted to pictures from our travels.  See more here.

travel gallery quote


The guest room.

In addition to the principle bedroom, our 2nd floor has two additional smaller rooms.  The smallest one is currently set up with a guest room, but we almost never use it.

It’s also the last bastion of color … well, this room and the pantry.

It’s slated for a makeover in 2023.  Our house is too small to have a room that is never used.  We plan to turn this into a studio for Mr. Q’s YouTube filming (if you’re curious, he films wargames called Pub Battles and his channel is called Boom Simple Pub Battles).


Mr. Q’s study.

The larger of our two spare rooms upstairs is Mr. Q’s study.

I don’t share much about this space because Mr. Q won’t let me do much in there.

But it does have one or two Quandie touches, like my first union jack dresser.

And these cool framed plat maps.


The cat.

While touring our house, you may be lucky enough to stumble across our sweet cat, Lucy.  She is the softest, fluffiest, friendliest, most loving cat ever and as of January 2023 she is closing in on 17 years of age.  Here’s hoping she sticks around for a few more years because we love her to pieces.

Lucy and her cat hat.

38 thoughts on “tour my house.

    1. Thanks Ginene. This page is still a work in progress. I’d have to actually clean each room in order to take photos of it and post them, so it might be a while before I get to all of them (not that I have that many). Now that summer is finally getting here, the indoors will likely be completely ignored for the next 4 months or so.


  1. I just loooove your farm house and all the other buildings as well which makes it even more unique! I know just what you mean about loving old houses, you just can’t recreate the same character with a new house! Here in South Africa old farm houses are just becoming more and more scarcer so when we found our farm for sale with various old mud brick houses with their Oregon wooden windows and shutters, we jumped at it! And to boot we have our own 2km beach! We even still have the original ox wagon that family used to travel more than 100 years ago to go to church!! Haha! It’s hard to imagine today, that’s how they had to travel!
    I also want to mention that I have been reading your blog for a while now and I just lOVE the way you can take any piece of furnite and make it WOW! You are so creative!
    I have been practicing on a few pieces but am no where near to your standard yet! Thanks for an amazing blog!
    Best regards from South Africa


    1. Thank you so much for you lovely comment Kim! For some reason, I am always thrilled when I have readers from a far away land. I don’t know that I would ever make it to South Africa, but if I do, your beach haven looks amazing.


  2. Your house is quite nice. I have been wanting to stain my kitchen floor like that for a while. Did you do it yourself? Can you share with me. Thanks


    1. Thanks Georgia! We hired someone to do the floor. The long story is, when we bought our house the kitchen floor was bad linoleum. We were going to rip it up and replace it with tile, but when we tore off the linoleum we found the hardwood underneath. It needed to be refinished, and we weren’t confident we could do it ourselves. I had seen a diamond patterned wood floor in a magazine, so I asked our refinisher to copy it. Basically, he sanded the floor, measured and taped off the squares and stained the dark ones. The light ones are just the natural color of the wood. He did an amazing job, and we love the floor. He said it was a lot of work and he’d never do it again though! I think the hard part is all of the taping! If you are patient, and you are good with planning the layout (math!), I think you could probably handle it.


  3. Stopping by from Town and country living. LOVE your home. How lucky are you to have a summer cottage and carriage house.
    And I can’t get over your Stunning furniture pieces. Amazing job!


  4. I agree….your “old” farmhouse is lovely! What you’ve done with it is simply amazing….every square inch has so much character; and the “summer house” is beautiful. I love to see you’ve kept all the original cabinets in the kitchen! Truly gorgeous!!


    1. Thanks so much fellow Linda! I have to say, I am very happy that I have kept the original kitchen cabinets as well. They are over 100 years old and still going strong. They truly don’t make ’em like they used to, and these are likely to hold up for another 100 years. Can you say that about new cabinets? And truth be told, we couldn’t afford all new cabinets even if we wanted them 😉 Luckily we don’t.


  5. Thank you for sharing your charming home! I love how you’ve decorated every room. I am especially crazy about the doors on your carriage house. The picture with the snow looks like a postcard. When I see a beautiful, old home like yours, I can’t wait to see the kitchen. Many times I’m disappointed when the owners have put in a new modern kitchen, so I was glad to see you’ve kept the vintage style. Kim


    1. Thanks Kim! I’m with you on keeping the vintage kitchen. I wish I could have done the same with the bathroom too, but that had already been ‘updated’ when we moved in. One day I would like to ‘restore’ it with a more vintage look too.


  6. Wow, I loved looking at the pictures of your home !! How fun and beautiful ! You have great taste, and you put it all together well. I will have to come to one of your sales ! Lisa from Dahlia Cottage (Hudson.)


    1. Well, this Saturday (Oct 4, 2014 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.) is your last chance until next June! I only do two sales a year. I’m super easy to get to from Hudson, I am near the intersection of 694 & hway 36. Hope you can swing by.


  7. Love your home and every furniture makeover! I currently use Annie Sloan Chalk Paint, but look forward to dabbling in Miss Mustard Seed Milk Paint soon! Glad I found you to follow for inspiration! … Kristin of Hazel Mae Home


  8. Your Lucy looks just like our Maverick. He too is soft and fluffy, but he is sort of a jerk. 🙂 Just ask our other cats and the poor dog. Your house is great!


    1. Sounds like Maverick is in charge at your house 😉 And to be honest, Lucy is pretty much in charge here too, but she is a sweetie. She likes to be carried around on our shoulders, and she insists on sleeping on our pillows at night. She also regularly expects us to drop everything and pet her.


  9. Feeling lots of envy over your lovely home . . . My suburban brick block is so blah. BUT, it’s what God has provided for us now and I am thankful for a warm room over my head! Maybe one day we will be out in the country with an old house and room to play 🙂


    1. I am truly thankful for my home. It’s not fancy, or large, or expensive, but it meets our needs and we love its charm. I hope you find your country house some time soon!


  10. What a beautiful home, an inspiration! Do you live near the Minneapolis area? Also, do you ever do classes uses chalk paint techniques. I really appreciate what you do,
    Do you have a date set for your June Sale? Thank you


    1. Hi Judy! Thanks for your compliments! I do live in the Twin Cities. I am in Oakdale, just inside the 694 loop off hway 36. I have done a few classes here and there, but have found there isn’t enough interest to keep them going on a regular basis. My June 2015 sale will be on 6/11/15 from 5 pm to 7 pm, and 6/12/15 from 9 am to 2 pm. Hope you can come!


  11. I love everything about your home, so warm and cozy!! Would you mind sharing your paint colors in the kitchen and pantry…love them:)


  12. Hi! I just LOVE the white, square plate with the black writing you have pictured over here, hanging in your kitchen! Where you aware that it is in Norwegian? Or rather “old-Norwegian”? It says, “please cut the cheese neatly”.


    1. I’m so happy to find someone who knows about Norwegian cheese plates! I purchased the plates at a garage sale for $1. The gentlemen who sold them to me said he thought they were Norwegian. I did a bunch of research online and finally found an article about Norwegian cheese plates and that article said the wording roughly translated to “treat the cheese nicely” which I found quite amusing. I even wrote a blog post about my kitchen with that title! You can see it here. Thanks so much for your comment Tone (or should I say takk!)


  13. OMG, your beautiful farmhouse reminds me of many things that was in the farmhouse I grew up in. You don’t realize how beautiful something is until it gone, sometimes. Your home is breathtaking.


  14. I have always been a big fan of yours! Love this tour and seeing your home & gorgeous painted pieces. I have similar tastes, enjoy using Miss Mustard Seed as well as General Finishes and Fusion paints. Sigh, my husband doesn’t share my taste, however, and I envy you being able to decorate your house this way with the blessing of Mr. Q. 🙂


    1. I’ve always been grateful that Mr. Q pretty much gives me carte blanche to decorate the house as I like. There are a few exceptions here and there, but for the most part I can just go for it!


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