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Change in perspective

Posted by lavender_lass (My Page) on
Wed, Jul 11, 12 at 20:24

So, we had to open the summer pastures this week, which means climbing the big hill behind our house. You walk down the hill to the creek, cross it (always tricky when there's still so much water) and then up the big hill. Here's a picture...

From Lavender's Garden

As I'm walking up this hill (and honestly, taking a break at the top) I looked down and saw our little farmhouse. From up there...it looked so charming! You couldn't see the work that needs to be done, just how cute it looks.

And while I'm sitting there, I realize...it won't look the same after my plan to add on all this space. Yes, it will be larger and more comfortable, easier for entertaining...but it won't be cute or charming.

So, I decided to scrap all my changes and go back and improve my original plan. It was a good plan, rather small for entertaining...but perfect for everyday. We can entertain outside and in the summer! LOL

Here's the plan (more or less) since I ran out of paper, for the little screened deck for the hot tub and a bit of the front pergola...but overall, this is it. By moving the vestibule forward, there's more room for the stairs and a back hall to the kitchen. It also gives us room to move the fridge behind the stairs and have a shallow pantry across from it...and much bigger windows over the sink. The island is really a work table, pushed up to the wall. The back 'porch' is more of a little 1920s sunroom with screens...and maybe a little bitty wood stove. Just enough to boil water or maybe heat up some food.

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

I like this table and chairs, in front of the window seat :)

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

And of course, my 'Laura Calder' style kitchen.

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

Something like this would be so cute in the sunroom!

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

And...a detached garage off to the left, with greenhouse in front...facing southeast! Perfect for plants and close to all the gardens.

So, what do you think?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Change in perspective

This looks like one of your first plans. Is it?

There are pros and cons to a detached garage. Ours is detached, and there is no roof between the house and garage. That means we get wet every time we come and go in the rain, and unloading groceries in the rain is a real pain.

The good thing is that we used to have a lot of mice every fall and since enclosing the garage and building the separate garage, we haven't had seen one. (I think I've heard them in the attic though.)

So my advice is that you have a covered porch connecting the house and garage, and if the sides of the porch are open, consider putting lattice or something on the north side to block some of the wind.


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RE: Change in perspective

Marti- Thanks. A breezeway...that's a great idea! Lattice on the front would be nice, for a little more privacy. The wind comes from the left, so the garage would block it...but I still like the lattice :)

This is a lot like my earlier plans, especially the living room and bedroom/bath. The kitchen is different and I think it's a lot better this way. Before, we had to walk out the bedroom, past the stairs/living room and through the dining room to get to the kitchen. And without going through a bathroom, there was no easy access to the laundry...which used to be where the porch is, here. I like this a lot better!

The upstairs will be two bedrooms and maybe space for a small bathroom. It will probably stay unfinished for now...but it does give us extra space, if we need it.


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RE: Change in perspective

I like it fine - you don't have your 'keeping' area tho.

I do think that as you get older (thinking this is your forever home) having a smaller area to care for (and walk thru and back again several (at least) times a day) will be much easier on you.

I do like having the pantry/mudroom closer to the kitchen.


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RE: Change in perspective

I like it fine - you don't have your 'keeping' area tho.

I do think that as you get older (thinking this is your forever home) having a smaller area to care for (and walk thru and back again several (at least) times a day) will be much easier on you.

I do like having the pantry/mudroom closer to the kitchen.


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- Hi! I think I moved my 'keeping room' to the back porch area. That basically has all the elements I wanted in my original keeping room. The wood stove (shown above) with some smaller, comfy seating and a little breakfast nook, which would make a great place to have a snack or play cards or a game, with the nieces and nephews :)

Something like this...

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

But with slightly warmer colors...

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures

I like the golds and blues together, especially with lots of green plants and some purple/lavender accents...like actual lavender plants and other herbs. It would be a fun space to be in the summer (with the screens) and also nice in the winter...with all the windows. And, I can keep the kitties out, by closing the door from the utility room, so they don't eat my plants, at night! LOL


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RE: Change in perspective

Since you draw plans so fast (lol), have you tried flipping the kitchen and dining room? The only drawback I see to your plan is the traffic flow through the kitchen. If you flipped the two rooms, you & dh can go straight across the back of the dining room to get out the back door. It would also be nice not to have the half bath quite so close to the dining room. Guests who use it would feel they have more privacy if they didn't have to enter the room right in front of everyone.


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RE: Change in perspective

Marti- LOL! They're fast, but not always pretty :)

I have tried that option and in some ways I like it, but not as much. The kitchen doesn't set up as well and it feels more modern. The sunporch becomes more of 'one big space' with the kitchen/dining room. A nice option for entertaining, but it feels less like a porch.

The powder room could be a concern, but there is a door sketched in (lightly) between the dining room and utility room...it's a swinging door, but a pocket door is also an option. Of course, during meals, I think most people would be more comfortable using the back bathroom. The powder room is a convenience when working outside...not having to track through the house...especially during mud season!


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RE: Change in perspective

gee, sorry my post became 'twins'!

is there a door from the kit to the porch area? I'm not sure what is to the left of the fridge. A door to porch?


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- No door from the kitchen directly to the sun porch. That's a counter and upper cabinet to the left of the fridge, but I think my pen faded out a bit.

I just calculated the square footage (after Young's post) and it's 1250 on the main floor (without the sun porch) and just under 1500, with the sun porch.

The upstairs is unfinished attic space, but probably just under 500 square feet (but much of it under sloped roof space). And, the downstairs is mostly cellar/storage, except for the addition (under the living room/bedroom) which is about 490 square feet.


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RE: Change in perspective

my first thought was it was a cab - but then it didn't come out to even up with the counter and there were what looked to be doors there so i thought maybe a door to the porch.


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- I think you're right, I do need an access to the sun porch, from the kitchen.

Marti- I've been thinking about your suggestions and trying the kitchen in the front of the house. It doesn't really fit as well (layout wise) but I like it better for the overall flow. So, still working on this...

And, I think I've found a way to move the bathroom out of the pantry and possibly use that area for baking, which might make the kitchen fit a bit better, into the smaller space.

I'm shopping with my mom this afternoon (groceries and Lowe's discount plants!) so I'll get her opinion. Then, maybe I can post it later this weekend :)


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RE: Change in perspective

hey, pick up some stuff for me too! I need some groceries and a few more things from lowe's...

looking forward to seeing what you come up with on the kitchen.


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RE: Change in perspective

Talking about mud and the bathroom, we put a full bathroom in our detached garage. The shower is really not used much but we thought we might have to convert the garage into a mil apartment when we built. But that bathroom is one of the best things about the garage. Our two house bathrooms are no where near an outside door and dh tracked through a ton of mud without even glancing down at his feet before walking in.


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- LOL! I found one nice butterfly bush at Lowe's....then a whole bunch of smaller ones at Fred Meyer. They were all great prices and they'll keep the deer out of my roses...so very successful garden trip :)

Marti- That's a really great idea...more garages should have bathrooms. If there's no mudroom, that's such a practical solution!

Here's the plan, but the mudroom on the end got a little cut off (not enough paper) so pretend there are doors on the front and back...and the missing left wall has the big farm sink (with window) and lots of storage and counterspace. Also, the sunporch door and the back mudroom door will share a little porch with steps down to the back.

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures


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RE: Change in perspective

How do the butterfly bushes keep the deer out of the roses? Do they prefer to eat the butterfly bushes?


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RE: Change in perspective

No, the deer (at least our deer) don't eat butterfly bushes, so I plant them behind my roses, on the backside of the fairy garden beds. I also have a few lilacs, in the corners...I'll take some pictures after I get the butterfly bushes planted :)

Most of the roses are against the house, but I left weeds last fall to screen the roses in the fairy garden, but the butterfly bushes will be much prettier! LOL

Old picture, when the roses were small...with lots of annuals to keep the deer confused.

From Lavender's Garden


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RE: Change in perspective

Ah, our deer decided they needed to prune my butterfly bushes.


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RE: Change in perspective

All deer have their own likes and dislikes...mine pruned my spirea and forsythias, which are now at my mom's house. But, they don't like lilacs or butterfly bushes. Once in a while, we can tell one of the babies has tried a bite, when we find a slightly chewed branch on the ground.

They also ignore (for the most part) coneflowers, daisies, coreposis, bee balm, peonies, daffodils, hyacinths, cosmos, zinnias, marigolds, lavender, catmint, salvias, speedwell, sage and lots of other herbs. We plant all those in between and in front of the roses, making a bit of a plant 'smoke screen' which seems to have worked, so far...but only close to the house.


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Laundry/mud room

Here's a quick sketch of the kitchen side of the house, with the laundry/mudroom.

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures


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RE: Change in perspective

LL, I just saw this and thought of you.

French Country chandelier


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RE: Change in perspective

Marti- Thank you! I actually have the smaller version saved in my pictures :)

How goes the kitchen remodel? Any decisions on flooring? I may have missed your most recent posts, but I thought I'd check over here.


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RE: Change in perspective

Have you scratched the first plan you posted on this thread? I really liked it. Forget what I said about flipping the kitchen and dining areas.

Work on the remodel has slowed. I've got a UTI and dh & I spent the afternoon at the emergency room. Fun.

I've been reading on the John Bridge forum and found that the best way to put flooring across the two slabs will be tile, laid with a grout line across the slab joint, and using a product called Ditra. I've got a few tile people to call but haven't had time yet. And I need to pick tile.

We've started tearing out cabinets on the other side of the kitchen, and now need electrical done before we can put them back. Seems like we are always waiting on something.


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RE: Change in perspective

Marti- You like the earlier plan, better? I thought you didn't like it. I like both, so please tell me what you prefer about the first plan :)

Sorry about the UTI...those are awful. I hope you feel better, soon!

Tile might be the best choice. I know you were concerned about water in the laundry room, so this way you could use the same flooring, throughout.


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RE: Change in perspective

LL - I like the kitchen where it is best. I'd have to have a window in a kitchen. Are those double French doors to the porch?

It looks like on a day to day basis you can confine your cooking to the front left area for just you and dh. When the kids are over you can spread out into the baking area and still have where you cook meals open for that (and other snacks).


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- Thanks for the response! That's what I was thinking, too...that we could use the baking area, when we needed more space. It would also be great for drying food and even freezing veggies and fruits. I hope to have more food in the garden next year, as well as flowers :)


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RE: Change in perspective

I've been looking at your plan, and trying to find some of the previous plan ideas.

What I like about the first plan you posted here is that it cut out superfluous space, and made everything more efficient, and more like the farmhouses I have been in.

What I don't like about it reflects back to my lifestyle and yours may be totally different. We wouldn't like the kitchen so close to the bedroom. Dh is an early riser and his rattling around in the kitchen would wake me, and I usually load and start the dishwasher after he goes to bed, and that would bother him. I guess most normal couples go to bed at the same time so that wouldn't matter at all to them.

I'll admit, I don't know why you want two kitchens, as in the last plan you posted. It seems like a lot of extra expense just to be used when baking or canning when most of that can be done in the main kitchen. I can see cleaning the veggies in the mudroom sink though, and keep that mess out of the kitchen.

I like the dining room next to the front door because it's more traditional and looks nice, but since you have a large family and lots of family dinners there, it would be nice to be able to spread out into the sun room, so flipping the two rooms would solve that. I like the window seat in the dining room and you'd lose that if you flipped the two rooms and put in French doors. Only you know if you'd really spend that much time sitting on the window seat, but it would look pretty.

Other than the half bath location, a drawback (for me) is that the plan is kind of maze-ish. I bet it wouldn't seem quite so much like that in person, and the only reason it stands out to me is because my house is maze-ish and I can't do anything to fix it. Still, for your plan, it would be nice if there was a more direct way to get outside. The plan above doesn't seem maze-ish and I think it's all in the placement of the work table. Well, that and the kitchen above seems to be a little larger.

The pros to having everyone walk so far into the sunroom and mudroom is that they won't track quite as much mud into the rest of the house if they don't check their shoes, and even I forget to check my shoes at times. And along that line, it would be nice to have that half bath closer to the back door. You had that in a plan one time.

You also had a plan where you had the half bath next to the master bath and I remember thinking that would be really convenient when you were both getting ready to go somewhere at the same time. Kind of a his and hers bathroom. I would really like that, if it were me.

For me, the design is all about convenience, having the kitchen next to the garage, having a bathroom next to the back door (or out in the garage), having the master bath away from noise, and STORAGE, STORAGE, STORAGE. You've got the storage covered. ;)


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RE: Change in perspective

So, you like both plans? :)

I know what you're saying. The first plan is more traditional and the sun porch definitely feels like an extra room...but you have to go through the utility room to reach it.

The second plan is not as traditional (kitchen in front) but the sun porch is more like a keeping room...off the dining area. It also means the wood stove will help warm up the kitchen/dining area more easily, too.

What I like is that the kitchen is closer to the living room/TV and easier to talk to people in there, while cooking. The window seat is cute (kept one in the bedroom) but the french doors would look very european...always a plus with my french country kitchen style.

The baking area...best part about this is that I can have marble! Stained, etched (patina, right) whatever you want to call it...would be very functional, but not what you see as you walk in the door. Also, I could have a lot more counter space, without having a huge kitchen. I don't like all the walking, so it's like the main kitchen and a big pantry, with an oven :)

Oh, and the two bathrooms work out much better in the back, since the hill drops down and the house is raised up more. Easier to add the crawl space and still have easy access for needed repairs. And, closer to the well and septic...but I really like that the claw foot tub is in one (my) bathroom and the shower is in the other! I can have the girly/vintage bathroom for me and the guests, but still have a more masculine/contemporary bathroom, off the bedroom.


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RE: Change in perspective

you won't lose the good roof line, will you?

I know that yrs ago when I canned (and made jelly)I'd have loved a separate space for it. It took up the whole kitchen. I worked at the table to cut things/prep. boiled water on my cooktop for the rings and seals. had a hot plate on my small stretch of counter for the canner with enough room next to it to take some out when done. then we had a small piece of counter across from it with our JennAire grill - I used that for the jars to set over night. The next day I'd carry the jars to my basement laundry room where I had shelves put up under the stairway to store them.

I always did it late at night and would worked into the wee hrs with it. After dinner was done, cleaned up and the kids were in bed and out of my way.

Then there'd be blanching tomatoes, grating zucchini to frz and cutting corn from the cob to frz too and slicing cucumbers to make pickles.


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- Exactly! My mom makes great strawberry freezer jam, which I'd like to start doing, too. And, there's drying all the veggies and fruits, to use in the winter...and herbs, too. I haven't tried canning, but freezing beans and peas is fun...and also takes a lot of space.


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RE: Change in perspective

I usually have a hot plate set up beside my cooktop too. Then I can have a big pot for boiling the jars and lids. Canning takes a lot of space, IMO.

Oh & Yes, LL, I like both plans, in fact, I like something out of every plan you've come up with. It's really hard to get everything you want in a plan. In a way, I guess I'm glad we didn't have a lot of choice with ours.


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RE: Change in perspective

Hi, LL,

When I mow grass, I often stop at the top of the property and look down on the house and ponds. From that distance I can't see the weeds and peeling paint, and every thing looks charming. :)

I liked your plan with the kitchen on the other side of the house, but probably because it reminded me of my kitchen. The last sketch you posted also reminds me of my kitchen layout, which works well in the old footprint. I frequently use the small sink in the other room, mostly to soak baking dishes, and to thaw and rinse raw meat (less surface area to clean up, compared to the BIG sink), and that's where we keep our coffee maker, so I think the separated rooms will work for you, too.

That said, I'd like to see your kitchen/baking/pantry a little more open to each other, maybe with a pass-through. If you have that drawn, I missed it. I know old houses traditionally have separate kitchen/DR/butler's pantry, but after taking out part of the wall between our kitchen and dining room, I really like the open feel (very similar to your kitchen and dining area). Since my kitchen has no window, the borrowed light really helps, too.

Also, I've read that some folks want to hide the messy evidence of cooking, but with a small house, that's not even on my radar--it is what it is, and at this point I kind of like seeing all the stuff that proves that the kitchen is used!


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RE: Change in perspective

"it is what it is, and at this point I kind of like seeing all the stuff that proves that the kitchen is used! "

that's my thinking also. I don't understand the disguising of the fridge really. You pay a ton of money to get one - then a ton more money to hide it? Every kitchen needs one - flaunt it!


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RE: Change in perspective

OK, steph, this one's for you:

;)


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RE: Change in perspective

LOL! Now you couldn't miss that fridge!

I agree that a kitchen is meant to be used. While I'd like to have a cleaner house...sometimes it just has to wait a few hours, when there's horses to feed, fences to walk, gardens to weed, etc. Always something happening on the farm, especially in the summer! I walked the fence again last night...I think I found my own version of extreme sports :)

Actually, just having a place to store everything and a little more counterspace than I do now, would be wonderful! I'd like to start baking bread, but I just don't have the room. That's one reason I think the baking area will be such a benefit. I'm thinking wood on two sides, with maybe marble on the other.

As for light, I have windows on each end, but I don't really have a way to open it up to the kitchen...but I could use a nine light (glass on top) door to the mudroom.


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RE: Change in perspective

lol - mama g! with that fridge I'd better look for a plaid floor - or polka dots.

"there's horses to feed, fences to walk"

as I scrolled down past the pic of horses in the field my thought was 'I'd probably spend most of my time walking by the horses and talking to them'. yep, the house wouldn't get cleaned that much.

how about transom windows over the pantry and mudroom doors?


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- LOL! Yes, the horses are a lot more fun to play with, than cleaning the house :)

Interesting idea about the transoms. Do you mean over the solid doors, or nine light (glass on top) doors...or both?

Here's another version, which I think (hopefully) has the best of both. The dining room is once again, in the front...it just seems to offer a lot more storage here and the little kitchen island didn't really fit. With the extra room for the fridge, the work table (island) against the wall offers more prep space and a wider aisle, by the range.

While I like the direct access to the sun porch, I think this furniture layout will be more usable, with a nice view out the back.

I still have the oven/microwave in the 'pantry' area and the two bathrooms in the back of the house. What do you all think?

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures


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RE: Change in perspective

is the 'back' behind the porch or below by the entrance?

how will it be to serve on the porch w/out an easy out doorway?

transom - either. we had them growing up and ours opened - good ventilation.


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RE: Change in perspective

lavender, did you see this link to a scullery, in the Kitchens forum? It's wonderful! Made me think of your plans, and my idea for a pass-through (Didn't even take time to comment on the thread.)


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- The back is behind the sun porch. And Rosie came up with a great idea for more access :)

MamaGoose- Isn't that a great idea? I love all those open shelves with beadboard! Are those soapstone countertops? Those look so cool with the beadboard and the floor...maybe I should use something like that in the pantry.

Here's my latest version. I moved the oven/microwave back into the kitchen...and the laundry back to the big pantry/utility area. I think we need more storage in the mudroom...and it may not be heated.

Also, Summerfield has concerns about the roof lines, so I changed the master bath and have an exit to the hot tub area!

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures


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RE: Change in perspective

i like the new changes. I'd still have a problem going around that corner to take food out/dishes back in. I'd have to have a 'serving' window somewhere. But then, I have problems with walking - in my younger days it wouldn't have bothered me.

I do think having the w/d in the pantry area is a good idea. I don't remember how cold it gets there in the winter but even here it can get cold enough at night to not want plumbing exposed to it. Many a night I cover my pump outside. the one time I didn't - the pipe broke. I lost all of my water and had to pay to have it fixed and to replace the water.

be sure outside walls (by plumbing) are extra insulated!


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RE: Change in perspective

Steph- Good point about the plumbing!

I've been debating about the washer/dryer...and I kind of go back and forth. Now, I'm thinking about putting it back into the mudroom (on the inside wall) and adding the pass through/scullery idea, from MamaGoose's link.

If I move the cooktop to the peninsula (with the stools) then I could have a pass through, where the range is, now. Maybe make that the baking area, with the sink on the other side (in the pantry). This has possibilities...


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Pass through

So, this is what I've come up with so far...and I really like it!

The pass through would be over the range, with the baking area on the other side. The backsplash (separating the two areas) would be slightly raised, like MamaGoose's example.

I thought about putting the sink there, but the baking area seems like a better fit...and I like having the sink under the window.

Hopefully, you can read my little descriptions of each area...so, let me know what you think :)

From Lavender Lass farmhouse pictures


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