Monthly Archives: July 2012

The Official MOVING Day: There Goes the House!

The day FinAlly came!  The movers left with the house around 9:15 am.  They weren’t sure how long the move would take, as this was their LONGEST move they’d ever done.  Yep–over 100 miles!  They couldn’t take the highway the entire way, which means they had to detour by taking side roads and gravel.  We didn’t know if they’d have to stop and leave it for the night or what would happen.  Check below to find out :)

Headed down Hwy 75

Entering Yates Center

Going through stoplight at Yates Center!  It was fUnnY, someone called Doug right then and said, “Hey, I swore I just saw your house go through Yates Center?!”

Northbound on Hwy 75.  This would be the longest stretch they could take on the Hwy, which was about 25 miles.

Even got to pass our HOUSE on the highway!  wEiRd!

Doug headed to the new place and the kids and I stopped at my parent’s for lunch.  Afterward, we were on the HuNt to see if we could find it.  Not knowing where the house would be, we decided to start in Melvern and backtrack.  Much to our surprise, this is what we saw when we popped the hill!  Let’s just say…they are making great time!

Went right in front of the school I went to as a kid!

Headed north out of Melvern.

Big ThaNks to all the farmers and people on the road that day who had to pull over to let the house by!

Garrett and Leanne as we followed the house.  As you can see, it can be eXhaUstiNg..and ExCitiNg!  :)

Police escort driving through downtown Lyndon!  This is where the kids will attend school.

Headed East on 268 toward Pomona.

A dUsTy trip on the gravel roads…so glad we sealed up all the doors and vents!  YiKeS!

WE MADE IT!  Victory Hug!

Pulling in the new driveway at 5:35 pm.  They made it in 8 1/2 hours!  Woot Woot!

Parking it next to the foundation!

Remember how I said God coNsTanTLy assured us that moving our house was the right thing to do?!  This is what we saw as soon as the house pulled in the yard.  Coincidence?  I think not!

We are on the home stretch! Next Friday I will share a few pictures of the house on the new location and let you in on some of our pRojEcTs we’ve already done in the last 4 weeks to make our place more like HOME!

 If you have missed my other posts leading up to this point read Why Move A House? , Demo WorkMoving Day and Moving Our House!

Again, we give all the credit to Unruh House Movers!  What an awesome crew!




Filed under At Home, RANDO•RAMA

Upcycled Winowpane Table

Take a look at my latest project!  My neighbors put all new windows in their house and I took their old ones for my endless projects!  I turned this square window into an end table for my living room.

Old window before I sanded off the old paint and dulled the rough edges

Ready for some legs!

Found these table legs at Lowes for about $10.00 each

Gave the table a new “Old” look using acrylic paint and a weather crackle effect!

~Robyn (Jersey Girl)


Filed under DIY, Junk Drawer, RANDO•RAMA

{Not There Yet, But Closer}

Last Thursday, July 19th was my BiRtHdAy and I knew exactly how it was going to look.  I had the whole day drawn out in my head and it went something like this:

  • Wake up before the crack of dawn to a typical, beautiful SuMmEr morning – still, quiet (with the exception of birds chirping), and even a little cool.  (Relatively speaking)
  • Spend my early morning enjoying the quietness of the day.
  • Leave for Kansas City at 8a.m. with my family for a fun day of lunch, shopping, and hanging out.
  • Eat lunch at a new Bistro in KC that gets excellent reviews.
  • Stroll on The Plaza (I love all their pink, hot PiNk and white hanging flowers!) something I love to do once a year when it it hot outside!
  • Do some school shopping for my girls.
  • Hang out with my husband and {perfectly behaved} daughters.  (Remember I said this is how I had drawn out the day in my head.  They do not always act this way, but on this day I was sure they would!)

Instead my day went something like this:

  • Wake up at 1:30 a.m with a pounding headache.  When the alarm went off at 4 a.m. and I still had the headache I decided to go back to bed!!
  • Wake up at 6 to thunder, lightening, and rain.
  • Leave for Kansas City at 9:15a.m.
  • Instead of eating at the new bistro, I instead opted (why did I do that?!) for another restaurant.  The food did not taste good to me at all and I wished I had chosen the Bistro instead!!
  • Stroll on the Plaza for only a short time as my girls were any thing but perfectly behaved.  Leave early because this isn’t working!
  • Stop at a children’s clothing store in the mall where my girls did not want to shop for school clothes.
  • Rush home early to get back for gym class at 5:30.

As you can see, the plan in my head did not go anything like the scene that played out.  But as corny as this may sound, I can truly say I had an AwEsOmE day.  I think it is because I have learned, with the help of God, friends, the Suede Sofa and all you readers who chime in from time to time to roll with the punches, embrace what life hands you and “LiVe-It”.

And so that is what I did.  I “Lived-It” cranky kids and all and enjoyed every minute of it.  And trust me, that is a huge improvement for this perfectionist, planner who has been at times called, “Rigid”.

Towards the end of our time in KC as we were leaving Scott told me he hoped I had a good birthday (he was feeling bad for me as I still had a headache and he knew things hadn’t gone quite as expected). In that moment, I couldn’t help but to think, how BleSsEd I am.

I would never be in this place in life again.  This is the only birthday where I will have a 4-yr old and a 6-yr old.  It’s also not every year that Scott is able to take a day off of work, and be surprised by two eager little ones who had asked their dad to wake them up at 6 a.m. so they could serve me breakfast in bed – a chocolate chip pancake along with a fresh cut FloWer.  (Just one benefit of sleeping in when I had planned to do otherwise.)

As we closed out the day with gym class and swimming lessons I realized I had done something not always easy for me to do, but something I am striving to do.  I had embraced life.  And it felt good to know, although I’m not perfect, I’m making one SmAll step at a time.




Filed under Inspiration

Moving Our House: Lifting It Off the Foundation

The next step in moving our house was lifting it off of the foundation.  The movers came on a Monday morning and by the end of the day Tuesday it was lifted up on the truck, ready to travel north on Wednesday morning.

Here is the side of the house.  You can see it LiFteD on the beams.

Looking into our basement.  See the hole in the cement in the top right corner?  They had to jackhammer out holes so the beams could slide through. YowZah!

They used large blocks of wood (like railroad ties) and stacked them up to keep the house from dropping on the foundation. Kinda LooKeD like they were playing Jenga!

Remember when we had to remove the bottom part of my office wall?  Here you can see why!  They ran horitontal pieces of wood so the beams would HoLd up the garage.

This is the door to my office.  We had to tape all the doors and vents to minimize the dust during the move!

Did I ever mention the COOLEST thing about the move??  We got to leave everything in it!!  It was awesome!  We packed up our fragile stuff and set it on the floor and moved furniture together to keep things secure.  Think of it as a decorated Uhaul truck…with windows!

The kid’s room was a GrEaT catch-all spot!

Here’s the back of the house, which will actually be the new FRONT of our house in the new location.  That’s right!  We are going to add on a sunroom and make this the new entry for our house!

Once it is moved, this will be the back of the house, which will lead out to our new deck.  The perks of moving a house…you can flip flop the overall look!

~~~~~~~~~~THE NIGHT BEFORE THE MOVE~~~~~~~~~~

Scott and Robynn were so GeNeRouS to allow us to stay with them from Monday-Wednesday morning, while the house was being lifted.  On Tuesday night we all went out to see the progress.  The movers had been busy!

Pictured below is the existing cement from our garage.

Looking south, with the house on the truck, ready to move!



Remember all of the pavers we picked up from the patio?  You can see the lines that they left below.  Glad that project is done :)

Thumbs up!  We are getting closer!

Check out the roof!  They attached thin pieces of wood to help limbs from catching the pipes during travel.

Family picture!

Come back next Friday to see the pictures of it driving down the road and going through the small towns along the way!  If you have missed my other posts leading up to this point read Why Move A House? and Demo Work and Moving Day!

We give all the credit to Unruh House Movers!  What an awesome crew!



Filed under At Home, RANDO•RAMA

Easy Sweet and Salty Pretzel Nuggets

This recipe has been a LiFeSaVeR when I need to make a dessert but am short on time.  It is the perfect blend of salty and sweet!


  • 1 16 oz. bag sourdough pretzel nuggets
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 Tb. cinnamon


Mix oil, sugar, and cinnamon together and pour over pretzels in oven safe baking dish.  Bake for 8-10 minutes at 300 degrees.  Take out of oven and stir pretzels around to make sure all pretzels are coated with mixture.  Put back in the over for 5 more minutes.  Let cool and EnJoY!


*Stay tuned for my Easy Garlic Pretzel Appetizer version of this recipe!

~Robyn (Jersey Girl)

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Filed under RANDO•RAMA, Recipes

Farm Boys {& Farm Girls}

So many aspects of SuMmEr take me back to my growing up years living on a farm – the smell of fresh-cut hay, not to mention those deliciously aromatic fresh tomatoes and cucumbers from our garden; the taste of fresh strawberries, fresh corn on the cob, and ice-cold water from a jug on a hot day; the sound of crickets as you lay in bed at night with the windows open (I grew up in SD where it cooled off a bit at night); and the sight of JoHn DeErE GrEeN (yes, my dad really did think that “nothing runs like a Deer”) as well as beautiful sunsets viewed from the cab of a tractor as I was baling hay.  This just barely scratches the surface, as the experiences are too numerous to mention.

So when the You Tube video “I’m Farming and I Grow It” went viral just a few weeks ago by the Petersen brothers (they are almost up to 6 million views), Lara and I were thrilled.  (Lara is a farm girl as well, lives on a farm, and her husband farms.)   It was icing on the cake that one of the Petersen brothers attends KaNsAs StAtE UniVerSiTy where Lara, her husband Doug, and my husband Scott graduated.

One of the things Lara and I love about the video is that it really portrays life on a farm.  That really is what farming looks like!!  It took both of us back to growing up on the FaMiLy FaRm.  (My family did not have cattle, but Lara’s did.)  We even laughed about the way they were dressed (jeans, baseball caps, and t-shirts with the sleeves cut out) as they could have passed for boys working on our familys’ farms.

If you’ve never experienced life on a farm and have wondered what it’s like, here it is.  At least the way it was on our familys’ farms.  We hope you enjoy it as much as we have!




Filed under RANDO•RAMA, Videos

Moving A House: Demo Work

In order to MOVE our house, we had to change the overall shape so it could travel a little easier :).  First, we had to rEmoVe our mudroom/sunroom area.  We were bummed because we finished it a few years ago.  It felt a little weird tearing it down so soon!

To save time, Doug and I used the jigsaw to cut out a big piece of the wall we were tearing out, picked it up, and then screwed it back together for our new “temporary wall”.  We made an opening for the door and viola!  Easy afternoon ProJect ;)

My (awesome) Dad helped me rip up the tile and floor from our old mudroom.  He was a HUGE help!

Here is a picture of the back of the house.  It is prepped and ready.  ChEcK!

Remember my office?  We converted half of our garage into my new office a couple of years ago.

Yep…that’s right.  We had to rip this out too. (tear!)  BUT all we had to do is remove the bottom 4 feet of the sheet rock throughout the entire room (so they could put support beams up during the move).  I secretly always wanted wainscoting half-way up my office wall anyway, so this was a bLeSsiNg and not a curse, right?!

Next, the basement!  We had to remove anything that hung below the floor, so that meant removing the walls…and the stairs.  This got a bit MeSsY!

And all the ventilation…luckily my Dad suggested that we mark all of the vents and the floor joists with letters, so it would be eAsiEr to hang back up.  Boy was he right!  Doug and I were able to get them hung on a Sunday afternoon after the house was on the new foundation! Yeah!

The last major demo project was the front porch.  Had to take that off too. Once we were FiNisHed our house was a perfect rectangle, perfect for hitting the road!

Exterior demo CoMpLeTe!  Check!

Now all we need are the moving trucks!  Come back next Friday to see the house get lifted!


P.S. All Mom’s know how much of a handful it is to watch kids during any type of project.  A big thanks to my MOM for watching my kids so Doug, Dad and I could get most of the final demolition accomplished in a weekend! 


Filed under At Home, RANDO•RAMA

You Can Do It!

As many of you have read I have struggled with finding the will to exercise for many years now.  I’ve made excuses for excuses and had convinced myself that even walking was just too much for me to handle.  While reading an article on the beach last week something FiNaLlY sank in and I thought to myself, “Stop making excuses…YoU CaN Do It!”  I have a feeling it was the cute pair of pink sneakers that got me, but who cares…I am happy to report that I’ve walked 4 mornings this week and my goal was only to walk 3!

Is there an area in your life that you’ve been neglecting?  Maybe it’s not exercise or weight loss, but a hobby you’ve been meaning to get into or a project you started that you’ve been pushing aside or didn’t even start because you thought it was going to be too difficult.  Try to remind yourself that starting new endeavors can’t always be easy.  Feeling proud about what you’ve accomplished makes it all worth it!

~Robyn (Jersey Girl)


Filed under Getting Real, Hard Reality, Life

Why MOVE a house?

Well I’m not going to lie, we thought the idea was cRaZy too.  We had been trying to sell our home for over 1 ½ years and weren’t having any luck.   We wanted to move about 80 miles north so we could live closer to family and live on Doug’s 5th generation fArM.

Front of House–Old Location

Back of House–Old Location

Mid-February we discovered how sobering it was to take a loss on the house (in order to get it sold) and spend mOrE money to get the same house in our new location.  We liked our house.  It was the first home we ever bought and we enjoyed the layout.  It was nothing fancy, just a simple home with LoTs oF LoVe.  I’ll never forget the conversation when Doug laughed saying, “Too bad we couldn’t just take it with us!”

As extreme as the idea was, we researched to confirm that it was in fact CrAzY.  Much to our surprise we wasn’t so WiLd after all!  From day one we were impressed with Unruh House Movers and it became more and more apparent that this was the door God opened for us.   After meeting their crew, getting the final bid, and not having any hang-ups in the planning process, we were confident this was the direction we were suppose to go.

I don’t know about you, but all the things in my life that didn’t seem “forced” have been the things that bring me the most JoY (and the least amount of stress)!  We can all relate to situations that we tried to control, and they never seem to work out like we’d hoped. I cannot TELL you how many hang-ups we had while trying to sell our house yet, once we checked into a HOUSE MOVE, the process came with little difficulty.

We committed with Unruh’s House Movers on April 16th and found a crew that dug our new basement one week later. (see what I mean about it being a God thing?)!

OUR NEW LOCATION! Didn’t hit any rock and got the basement dug in 1 day!

At home, the first thing we did was start pulling up ALL of our patio pavers.  If we were going to move, we wanted to take as much with us as we could!

Nothing like picking up over 200 pavers that we laid a few years ago! Eekk!

Come back next Friday for some more pictures of the demo work needed to prep our house for the move!



Filed under At Home, RANDO•RAMA

America Is…

Happy InDePeNdEnCe DaY from The Suede Sofa!  As we celebrate our FrEeDoM we thought we would share our thoughts on what America means to us.

Robyn: Living in New Jersey, America to me is having the opportunity to take my kids to Ellis Island and show them where my great grandparents became United States citizens, seeing the Statue of Liberty, and catching a Broadway play all in one day!  Then hopping in the car and in an hour or so putting our feet in the sand and soaking up the sun on the same beach that my grandparents took my mom to 60 years ago!

Nicholas’ first trip to see The Statue of Liberty

Abby at Chadwick Beach New Jersey!

Selling lemonade at the beach!

Lara: America to me is continuing my husband’s 5th generation farm legacy of helping feed America and the world.

Garrett and Leanne 2012

Counting Pollination!


Red, white & blue waffles!!

Family fun cooling down at the pool!

Family fun cooling down at the pool!!


We thought Rodney Atkin’s song, It’s America was perfect to kick off our 4th of July…we hope you enjoy it too!

We love to hear from our readers.  Leave your comments and let us know what America is to you!

Happy 4th of July!!

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Filed under Holiday, RANDO•RAMA, Traditions, Uncategorized