Friday, December 31, 2010

2010 A Year In Review


It was a good year with lots of changes around the farm.

Saw lots of least for us here in Kansas and a visit from a big fat racoon that took up residence in our barn.

We discovered live bees in the walls of our corncrib.
Olly and Lizzy came to live with us.
More snow and ice and trips to Amish country.
I replaced the doors under the kitchen sink with curtains.
We had a trip to Kansas City.

Put power out to the chicken coop and garden shed
The neighbors put cows in the fields around us.
Things were starting to grow.
We brought Spring the chick home with us.
It snowed the first day of spring.
The chicks arrived in the mail.
The friut trees were starting to bud.

We brought home Priscilla and Percy our little African goslings.
Breaking ground for the new vegetable garden.
The fruit trees were in full blossom.
We were in Lilac heaven...the scent was all around us!
We discover writing from 1934 in our old grain bin from a fellow who signed his name and mentioned that it was 108 in the shade that day.
New strawberry plants (75) are in the garden in planted.
Chicks move into their new home.

I put in the new rock boarder.
Lots of rain and storms.
Goslings are loving the 'pond'.
Planted the flower pots.
Fruit is looking good on the trees.
Find 3 puppies left on the side of the road.
Roses in full bloom.
Young chickens finally move to the 'big house'.

We sell the boat.
Road trip to the Gypsum Hills and Greensburg Kansas where a tornado destroyed over 90% of the town in 2009.
Got our first egg from young hen.
Flooding and a trip to Buhler.
We get our new Dixie Chopper.

Rains and flooding 4th of July weekend.
Discover fields of sunflowers near Hesston.
First of the garden produce.
I go on a photo shoot ...barns and Victorian house in town.
Barn catches fire but is saved.
Barn burns to ground 2 days later.

Our trip to Canada to see my kids and grandkids!
Yoder Heritage Days...Amish country.

Dig trenches for water line.
Kansas State Fair.
Flea Market find; Oak Dresser!
Shep finds possum in yard in the night.
Dust storm.
Another trip to Kansas City and pictures of old school house.

Pumpkins ready in the garden.
Blog about my office/craft room.
Enjoying fall.
New wood stove.
I win a give-away from my friend Susan at
Fall decorating inside and out.
Picket fence starts going up.

Flea Market finds me a bike!
Still picking beautiful tomatoes and drying herbs.
Canned some tomatoes.
I get photo's of Donna's garden.
Bee's and honey in corn crib.
Big building starts coming down.
New Lopi wood stove goes in.
Photo shoot of The Old Hardware Store
Trip to Amish a bald eagle.
Christmas Tree goes up.

Christmas decorating.
Cookie baking.
More decorating!
Trip to the Antique Mall
Saying GOOD BYE to 2010

I hope 2010 has been a good year for you.

What were the highlights of your year?

Maura :)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Stepping Back In Time Part 2 (Treasures)

The Old Hardware Store

Last month I did a post on The Old Hardware Store
in Halstead Kansas.
This old hardware store has been operating since

Meet Margaret

Margaret Kraisinger

Margaret is the sweet lady who with her
husband bought the old 1879 building in 1998.
With help  of some wonderful craftsmen they
brought this beautiful old store back
to it's original glory.
As Margaret's
a work in progress  and what 
wonderful progress they've made.

I thought you might like to see more of the inside
of this historic building along with some of the wonderful
things Margaret has for sale.

The cash register is not for sale

I love this set above and if we still lived in our
old Victorian I would buy it!

There are so many beautiful hardware pieces to 
choose from. 

They are like works of art.

The pottery on the upper shelf is Margaret's private collection.

This is something that my friend Amy over at 
could use for her little pigs!
Margaret has smaller ones too Amy ;)
(Amy is having her first 'give-away' so
please pop on over and visit her sweet blog and meet her wonderful 'family'.)

Above are a few of the original drawers that have been stripped of their enamel paint and re-finished.
Below are some old drawers that are in original condition.I don't think these below are original to the store.

There is lots more to show you but I'll do that again in another post next year! 

I hope you have a wonderful day.

Maura :)

Monday, November 22, 2010

Stepping Back In Time Part 1 (The Restoration)

( You may click on the photo's to enlarge)

In the little town near where we live
there is a wonderful old store
and stepping across its
is like stepping back in time.

It's called
The Old Hardware Store
and it has been in operation since
This old store is filled with antiques
and other items and is a furniture/home restorers delight. You can find genuine antique hardware for house or furniture and every kind of hardware in between!
There are things in here that Maragret is still discovering
or trying to figure out what it is.
 It's an amazine place to visit.

The old store in 1925


The store is owned by Margaret Kraisinger.
Margaret and her husband Gary bought the building
in 1998.
The store was closed for 1 year while they did an
extensive restoration and then re-opened
in 1999. Margaret and Gary are
still restoring things
as they go.  

Before restoration

Thick layers of enamel paint covered the beautiful old
original oak cabinets bins and drawers which
had to be removed and in some cases the
wood had to be bleached before it
was stained and protected.
There are 5 individual units
that can be changed
around on this
wall alone!

Before (see the ceiling?)

 (42 feet of hardware cabinets-360 drawers)

See the hanging ladder?
It was re-hung after at least 40 years.
The other original fixtures such as the scales
nail bin, counters, signs and most of the show cases
have been in the store for around 75 years.

Did you notice that ceiling?
It's original.

The limestone building was built in 1879 after a fire burned down many of the wood frame buildings on Main Street. It survived the 1910 tornado and several severe floods.
Shortly after 1902-1907 the first owners had the heavy
tin ceiling installed.
Originally from the two medallions hung gas lamps.
The old fans were added during the restoration.
Over the years the ceiling was painted white but
Margaret was able to find spots of the old paint colors
and tried to match the colors as closly as possible.
They did a wonderful job!

There are two rooms behind this room, one is the
old office which still contains the original safe and bookkeepers desk.
There are even two hats hanging under the window
that belonged to one of the former owners.

I stopped by the store to take a few pictures for my blog last week and only meant to stay long enough to
take pictures and talk to Margaret for
a few minutes...I think I was
there for a couple of
There is just
so much to see
and Margaret is a wealth of
information. If you are ever in the  area
you should stop in and visit The Old Hardware Store.
I bet your husband wouldn't say no!

If you're restoring a piece of furniture or your home
and you're needing some original hardware...this is the place to go to.

You can visit THE OLD HARDWARE STORE at 
208 Main Street
Halstead Kansas 67056
or call her at
877-731-1188 (toll free)

In part 2 I'll show you some of the neat things Margaret
has for sale.

I hope you have a wonderful week.
Maura :)

Friday, November 19, 2010

Changes In The Air

( You can click on the photo's to enlarge)

I like 'change'.

That is ...depending on what it is.
When it comes to decorating my house I enjoy changing things up a bit. Adding something here or there or
taking something away.
Change can be fun.

However...there are some changes that I don't like.

There is a road to the north of us that I love to travel.
It is a narrow road that has neat little bends in it where there are lots of tree's and a creek and a few windmills
and even some cattle at times.

It's the perfect road to take a walk
and just enjoy the peace and
quiet of the country.

This spring this peaceful little road started to see
some changes. They started bringing in gravel
at the corner of this road and the one we live
on. We started to see large equipment digging
a hole and then a huge pipe was installed.

See that large tank in the background?
They erected that this summer a couple of miles from us.
And it's right down the road from my favorite little corner.
This tank will eventually be filled with water after the large pipes are laid from here to Wichita and from there
to a salt mine that is about 25 miles from us.
This spot seems to be the middle point.
It seems that the salt from this old mine is seeping into the ground water and working it's way to the city. 
They figure that they can fill the tank with clean water and then flush the water down into the water table hoping that the salt will be washed back towards the mine. I hope it works...but in the meantime
the beautiful landscape around us is being changed. 

If you look closely at this picture you can see the
little orange flags in the left corner.
The large pipes will likely be laid somewhere through this intersection and all the way down
this road heading towards
our corner and the salt mine.

My sweet little spot may be changed forever.

I noticed the other day when I drove through here after
I took these photo's that the cattle are gone.
I'm very grateful that I took these
when I did. 

This little fellow was trying to get a drink.

He quit when he saw us coming towards him.

But I did manage to get this shot.
See the little milk bubbles?

Watching the changes to this little peice of
country landscape
has made me realize again the importance
of taking photo's.


Don't wait for 'next time'.
You may never get that oportunity again.

I hope you have a WONDERFUL day.

Maura :)


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