I’ve been Instagramming, but not blogging…again. That’s why I set up the tweets to import a weekly post, so those Instagram photos are available here as a post instead of just in the sidebar. Do we like this, or notsomuch?

Would you rather I perdiodically post the photos as a recap on the blog, or is the weekly tweet recap good enough? This is a poll, without my having to activate a poll plug-in, so I’ll be looking for some piping up from you fine people.

Here’s just a very little of what’s been going on…some have been on Instagram and some never quite made it.

We had another evening of treehouse glamping, where there might have been a jedi lightsaber show.

I don’t know anything about editing and resizing video, or I’d show you some moves, but the file is too big to upload here.

The lightcube glowing through the treehouse window was our nightlight.

Otto spent half an hour staring down this deer one day, and will watch them as long as they hang around. He seems cool with them, and doesn’t bark often. It’s the chipmunks that seem to piss him off.


These are two projects currently in progress.  The CC is building a firewood shelter/shed which will also hide our ugly air conditioning units when finished.

I am working on a pair of Keller chairs. The CC doesn’t think I am we are ready for the living room chairs yet, since the bottoms might be a bit complicated for newbies like us.

Otherwise it’s been cooking, digging, mulching, weeding and hanging by campfires. Y’know,  springtime stuff.

One of our favorite farmers markets opened today, so that makes us happy…but the humidity started to roll in this week, which makes us sad..and sweaty.

Don’t forget to let me know what you think about my attempts to integrate the different media. If you want to follow me on Instagram, I’m @modfrugal, same as Twitter.


Things I Did While NOT At The Flea

I failed you this month…I didn’t make it to the flea market, thus no round up for you. I had school commitments on Friday, and Saturday and Sunday just flew by before I knew it. Melissa has a nice round up, so if you want to peek at the flea through her eyes..check it out here.

So why was I dragging my ass and not taking care of your vicarious shopping needs? It’s Spring people, and that means I get overwhelmed with the one million things that need doing outside this place of ours.

I finished painting inside the treehouse this week, but these are some of the only snaps I have. I planned to take some proper ones yesterday, but the place got trashed with mud over the weekend, and no one wants to see that yuck. Here’s the only picture I took via Instagram after moving some of the stuff back in. Sadly, I think ALL these pics were taken with my phone.

We have turned one wall into the chalkboard panels previously requested.

The Things and I worked at the local state park Saturday morning removing exotic, non-native plants from the forest floor so that there is less wild honeysuckle and more of this.

Then, there was pressure washing to be done, or should I say started. I still have the back decks to do, and that will take ages to finish.

Even though it can be tedious work, I have to admit that pressure washing all that gunk away is a satisfying job. Now I’ll need to go back with some deck stain to touch up some spots once it’s dried out.

I replanted my rootbound and pitiful looking junipers. I found these white planters at Target and am loving how light and easy to move they are…win!

I also started to topdress the pine straw patio, but only after retrenching the sump pump drainage creek. This time we laid plastic down so that we don’t have to retrench it every year. I’m headed to the stoneyard this morning to get more river rock to fill in the deeper creek. It had started flowing all over this end of the yard creating a swampy mudpit, but now we are nicely channeled. You won’t see the plastic when we are done adding more stone.

We also plan to build a proper bridge since the hose access is off to the right, so stepping over the creek is frequently required.

We put together our new Ikea Äpplarö table, and, of course, we have had 2 meals there already.

Sunday was a spectacular day..I snapped the dogwood in bloom before it’s gone.

So, while I missed the flea, we got a lot done, but there’s lots left to do…onward!


Treehouse Update (Planning)

Not exactly an update, as much as an update on plans.  We had a family “meeting” in the treehouse this weekend to discuss next steps with the interior painting etc.. and some fun and interesting requests emerged.

1) Zip line access – We have a zip line in the front yard that we can move…this will be tricky to keep it safe, but we think it’s possible…

2) A chalkboard inside -  Easy Peasy! We can paint a few of the panels in the chalkboard paint.

3) A refrigerator – Um, no…this is a treehouse, not your college dorm room….next?

4) A TV – See #3….DUH.

5) The bottom bunker built – This is actually top of their wish list. We really wanted our big outdoor project to involve a deer proof vegetable garden this year, but we’re feeling some pressure here. Our answer was: “We’ll think about it.” Still thinking.

6) A poster/collage depicting Godzilla destroying a Minecraft city – COOL!!!! We are a family who geeks out over old 50’s-60’s Godzilla movies…we love them. The boys are also completely obsessed with Minecraft, so this marries their passions on what should be a super fun art project for us…

We’ll be looking to create a combination of these two.


via koyaanisqatsi degauss


image via godzilla2012


While looking for images, I can across these great vintage Polish and Czech Godzilla movie posters from the 70’s, I love these and I can’t wait to show the boys and see what they think of them.


images via Monsterbrains


We concluded our planning session up there with snacks and a round of Life, and I’m so happy that it is only in this game that I would have 3 weddings and both a set of twins AND a set of triplets…phew!



Oh, I almost forgot! I made a mini-tour of the treehouse so far so that new readers don’t have to slog through all those treehouse posts to see the progress of the building.


Year Three

As promised, I’ll try and summarize what happened around the ranch this past year and see where we’re headed for 2012.

Recaps for previous years here:  Year One, Year Two

Around the house:

We got rid of the dining room chair rail.

I built a temporary patio/firepit.

I made an ass for myself.

Hosted a huge Halloween Party.

We’re always switching things around in the furniture department.

I seemed to cook a lot of food this year.

We contemplated chickens, but opted instead for a puppy.

I talked about my bedroom wishes (NOT THOSE) but didn’t follow up. I did indeed buy that Home Depot drop cloth after all, so now my mattress on the floor issue is gone.  Yay for $30 solutions! I also got new night tables off Craigslist I never showed you.

Otto has decided he must be the supermodel of all my interior shots….every time I’d try and take a photo, he’d settle himself right into the shot.

Yes, that is the Monopoly Man trophy you see. I NEVER win, but managed to pull one out over the holidays so it’s finally my turn to proudly house the trophy…until I lose the next game.



We had a big travel year, and while in New England, I had my heart broken at Brimfield. I seem to have better luck within my budget on my local flea excursions.

We hit up the local Rennaisance Fayre.

Had a big sale.

Doesn’t look like we got a whole lot done compared to past years.  But it felt like a busy year…oh yeah, WE BUILT A TREEHOUSE!!!!  And it took a long time.

We still haven’t painted the interior, and are beginning to wonder if we really need to. I realized after the leaves fell that I could finally get some decent shots of it so you can see how it relates to the house a bit better.

In summer, the treehouse is almost completely obscured by foliage….but now, it’s quite naked!

The sleeping bunker/level two building plans are on hold to address some more pressing needs around the ranch.  Namely a pantry, to keep the dog out of the foodstuffs, and if all goes well, a real bathtub.  I always thought we’d do the half bath first, but the lack of proper bathtub in the house is starting to become more and more important to both of us.  The CC has been playing soccer on weekends and as he limps home stiff and sore…he’s starting to want a good soak as badly as I do.  Time and money will tell.  I’ve been pinning ideas for it here.

As for which outlet I should choose to sell my finds? There’s pros and cons to all of them and if I can manage it, a hybrid of the options might be best.  Maybe an Etsy shop for smalls and E-bay for big pieces? We’ll see…I’ve actually been pretty busy this winter redoing some dining chair sets for other people.  Once I get my last set finished and out the’s time to start selling again.  Hope everyone is looking forward to a good 2012…I love the optimism January’s clean slate can bring.

Treehouse Update

I believe I might have mentioned a barn door recently? Well, we didn’t do all that well documenting the door construction, but you’ll get the gist. We did get the Tractor Supply hardware we had mentioned before.

The CC basically took the same siding used on the treehouse and nailed it to a frame he built to size, so that when the door is open, it won’t cover the window strip.  Instead of using the brackets that came with the door hardware to hang the box rail, we mounted it onto our cantilevered beam that houses the bucket pulley.

The CC nailed up a couple of temporary support brackets to aid in installing the big beam that will house the hardware.

We mounted stops to keep it from sliding off into the forest….

We are still deciding about floor guides.

Having a proper door makes it feel much more cozy and homey inside…paint coming soon I hope!

Bad shot.  Inside view…a handle to slide it shut and the bottom beam wrapped in flashing….

We’ve been starting to add some more minor details to the lair……


Thing Two made his own sculpture that he wanted to incorporate into the treehouse, and by pure luck, it fit perfectly between the beams as a shelf.

Which now is home to his slingshots and ammo….

When the hammocks aren’t in use, they hang up in the corners.

We are slowly adding shelves to gain some much needed storage for the stuff they want up here.  We can’t let them keep snacks up here b/c the raccoons would break in and trash the place (our raccoons can remove bungee cords from garbage cans-crazy skills).  Bottles of water are OK though.  Games and other activities now have a place.  The fans hangs up high when not in use to keep it out of the way.

It always helps to keep track of time.

We are resisting any outer hardware for the barn door to give it more of a “secret door” feel…by putting your fingers in the grooves, you can pull open the door without hardware.

More shelves are going up, and hopefully we have time to paint inside soon before the weather turns cold.  For new readers, previous posts on the treehouse can be found here.

The Unintended Disco

I wanted to make an inexpensive pendant for the treehouse to give it a little extra special umph.  While I liked the look of these projects, I wanted them to be slightly tweaked….

via Zipper 8 Lighting


Same principle here, but too feminine for my Things.

So I thought smaller, tighter circles might give it more of a fishscale over floral vibe…so I punched out LOTS of little circles…this was just the beginning.

Gluing.  Small circles.   For FIVE AND A HALF HOURS.  Taking into account the breaks taken to feed people and other tasks…it took me WAY longer than I thought it would.  Just as well I love these little people.

Speaking of, Thing One helped me with the design.  He requested a stripe scenario with the silver at “the equator” of our globe, so I like to think I took direction well.

I might have opted for a solid, or an ombre effect, but this is their lamp and I want them to have input and ownership over their space, so stripe it is!  I started to worry that using card stock would block too much light, but I wanted the stiffness of the heavier paper and decided to risk it.

Well, once I hung it…it looks kinda like a disco ball!  Oops…or not!?  Hey-o!  Things like to disco!

It is not really bright enough for general lighting, but it is really great mood lighting/nightlight which might work out perfectly here.  There are other lanterns and such in here….

Of course, right when I finished, SFAS aired and I saw Orb-lando’s DIY wire pendant and well, that would look so much better in here.  THANKS Orlando.  I was happily discoed for a few hours.  We’ll see what the Things say on the matter.

BTW, I am really digging season 2…loving her vintage choices, and well, everything else. I’m so pleased to see a show like hers doing well.  Long may it last.

Where was I?  Yes.  We have a lamp that looks like a disco ball!

Next on the horizon?  Well, things are heating up around here….barn door installation, The Flea next weekend,  and THE SALE…and all the prep leading up to said event.  I’ve got to start shooting items for your previewing pleasure!