Grandma's House DIY

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Its been a hell of a ride since I started this blog and renovated and moved into Grandma's house back in 2015. I got married, divorced, lost my doggo soul mate, spent two years as a single gal, remodeled everything, threw my back out countless times and found a man who wanted to get on board with me! (The story behind Storyhardt Farm.)

This is my blog on how we're making it, what we're up to, how I could afford my dream home at 30 years old and how Lodi and I are tackling all there is to do around here. We have two horses and a little dog named Annie who put up with our shenanigans.

My Mom once told me, "I think you just like making a mess!" And, honestly, I couldn't really argue with her. I'm always up to something - I'm ALWAYS figuring, working, thinking (even when I don't know it) on how to improve something around here. Its endless. Its great. I love it and, fortunately Lodi loves me, because I can't help it!

Getting Your Waterside Home Ready for Winter: 5 Top Tips

May 2021 I worked on my garden quite a bit this month in preparation for planting. We had such an odd year this year with the weather...

Getting a waterside home ready for the winter! Though we may live about as far from the ocean as it gets (quite literally in the center of the continent) we are also the land of 10,000 lakes. At least half of my friends and family live on the water! There is a lot of maintenance to a lake (or seaside) home though oftentimes not really considered until you get there. I think its totally worth it though and have always dreamed of one day having a little river cabin! Read the rest of the post »

August 2021 Annie Becoming a Farmer’s Dog & August Photo Gallery

August 2021 - I have to start this post out with a disclaimer. Everything I am about to say about The Farmer's dog food is legit - they

August 2021 – I have to start this post out with a disclaimer. Everything I am about to say about The Farmer’s dog food is legit – they literally don’t even have an affiliate program for me to make money from. However, for those many folks I know who follow us who have their own doggos, I just have to tell you about what’s been going on with Annie. After Lodi’s 2012 discharge Annie was assigned to him as his service dog from the Wounded Warrior program. So, to say that she means a lot to him, is an understatement! Read the rest of the post »

July 2021 Concerts, Total Craziness and Taking a Break!

Well our July 2021 started off like a "normal" July before quarantine and Covid meaning: We did way too much over July 4th weekend

Well our July 2021 started off almost like a “normal” July before Covid meaning: We did way too much over the 3 day, July 4th weekend and totally exhausted ourselves. It was REALLY hot and sunny and crazy humid. We went to two concerts and had a big family get together at our place. It was A LOT. Deciding last minute to have a party out here meant Lodi and I were scrambling all day to prepare for it and then running to try to enjoy a concert and then working again all the next day before the next concert in some pretty impressive summer heat! It does mean we had our new lower deck and fire pit complete WAY ahead of schedule though I’m not convinced how much we stressed ourselves out was totally worth all we got done… Read the rest of the post »

June 2021 – So so so much manual labor… in 90 degree heat!

June 2021 – When we said “come hell or high water” we didn’t know we were making a choice! *laughs while sobbing* May 27th and 28th we had to cover our garden because it froze hard two nights in a row. And then seven days later (Friday June 2nd) we hit a heat record of 100 degrees. (Lodi and I also got our second Covid vaccines that Friday morning.) Unfortunately for us we had chosen that specific weekend, several weeks before, to tackle our yard with the rental of a bob cat, a concrete saw and a ground leveler. That first weekend of June we stoically put on our work boots, took a deep breath, and stepped out into a record breaking heat wave (and several week drought) that we spent two days straight in. Read the rest of the post »

May 2021, Yard Work, Kitchen Organizing and Vegan Dinners!

May 2021 I worked on my garden quite a bit this month in preparation for planting. We had such an odd year this year with the weather...

May 2021 we had such an odd year this year when it came to the weather. We broke record highs in January and March and then saw a chilly rainy April and a cold early start to May. For us Minnesotans an actual “spring” is kind of a weird thing. Usually it seems like we go from 20 to 90 every year in about a week. But I’d certainly still take a couple months of cold and rainy over what we would have normally had which could be very cold and snowy. It did feel like we were endlessly going back for “just” five more bags of pellets for the stove though and I know I wasn’t the only one getting beyond restless for nice weather. Read the rest of the post »

April 2021 A Spring Walk About, Gearing up for Summer

April 2021, every year since 2014, once the weather finally turns nice, I do a full walk about of the property. Lodi and I did this together

April 2021 – This month brought us grief and joy in large quantities this year. April 13th Lodi proposed to me and, of course, I said yes! We are absolutely just annoyingly happy lol no set date yet but it won’t be until next year. Not two days later I got the call we all dread. Lodi got home before me and my Mom’s little mare (Jazzy) was unable to get up and had been struggling for at least a couple of hours. She had a sky high temp and our vet gave her antibiotics to fight the tick disease he suspected. We made her as comfortable as we could and waited for the shots to kick in. Read the rest of the post »

March 2021 – Spring Temps Makes me Ready to Garden!

March 2021 started out with some gorgeous weather for us and it simply never stopped! We beat all kinds of records. I can't wait to garden!

Unlike the old saying of March coming in like a lion and leaving like a lamb this year we saw spectacularly warm weather almost the entire month of March 2021. I think all of us Minnesotans were holding our breath waiting for one last hit of real winter before spring. Its happened so many times before in March that the fact that we didn’t get two feet of snow felt quite odd. (Though we did get a few inches and April has dumped some serious snow on us…) As always though, if its warmer than it should be, I have no complaints. Except for that two week serious cold snap in February we had an incredibly warm and mild winter. Read the rest of the post »

February 2021 – Two Birthdays and One Serious Cold Snap

February 2021 at Grandma's House DIY, I turned 35 and Lodi turned 39 in January - Ways we're saving money & frugal that might be obvious...

February 2021 and January. We had a truly beautiful first half of winter – we literally set records with how warm it was! By the time mid January came around we all agreed that no matter what the weather was like for the last half of winter: we had been spoiled and had nothing to complain about. Remarkably it was still cold enough for ice fishing and we still even had enough snow for snowmobiling. So, everyone was close to happy, and I doubt that’s ever happened before. To be fair though, with Covid and all we went through last year, it sure felt deserved. Lodi and I have our birthdays in the first two months of the year and man how that sucks after the holidays. Read the rest of the post »

2020 Recap – Major Plan Changes, One Very Difficult Year for Everyone

MAJOR HISTORICAL EVENTS AT THAT POINT. So I'm going to try not to mention too much outside of our household in this 2020 recap lol

Writing this 2020 recap I had to keep stopping myself from bringing up everything we already know that we all lived through (and are still living through…) A plague, Australia on fire, quarantine, the tiger king… (Carol Baskin definitely killed her husband) $1200 subsidy checks… all in the first couple of months… where would I even stop if I started recounting everything? And my brain pretty much just stopped recounting stuff after April because there were JUST TOO MANY MAJOR HISTORICAL EVENTS AT THAT POINT. Read the rest of the post »

December 2020 Starting with Manual Labor Because This is Us!

December 2020, my second Xmas with Lodi. My coworkers asked what What did you do on the house this weekend? Because I can't help it!

December 2020, my second Xmas with Lodi. My coworkers know me so well that when I got to work Monday November 30th after our four day holiday weekend I wasn’t first asked how my Thanksgiving went instead I was asked, “What did you do on the house this weekend?” I have no shame lol they all know that with four days off I absolutely could not help myself! Lodi and I divided and conquered rather unintentionally over that last weekend in November. On Thursday we had a small gathering with family, we drank, ate and were totally merry and did NOT work at all. Friday, however, it was GO TIME! Read the rest of the post »

November 2020 – Gifts to be Grateful for, a Less Stressful Holiday Season

We managed to complete most of the BIG projects by the end of October which was a gift for me of a much less stressful November 2020. No one is going to believe it but I am actually not a huge fan of renovation. I love the finished product. I love improving this home. But this last spring, summer and fall reminded me how I do enjoy smaller projects a lot more. (Projects that don’t have us barely able to get out of bed in the morning and working 14 hours straight because its snowing and there’s a giant hole in the side of the house…) Read the rest of the post »

October 2020 – Our Fall Photo Gallery

October 2020 – This time of the year in Minnesota can either be Heaven on earth or a great big ball of suck. (Usually it takes turns being both which is exactly what it did this year.) We’ve had snow storms throughout October some years and have also seen highs in the 80s other years. This year it was cool but a pretty much lovely month minus the snow storm we got hit by at the end of it! We had many of those perfect, shiny, fall days where the sunshine feels like liquid silver and the shadows are long and dark and the trees get to take their time turning in for the winter… And then a foot of snow landed on us… I have some catching up to do as I didn’t recap on all of the projects we completed throughout September in my last post. Read the rest of the post »

September 2020 – Leaving the Emerald City

September 2020 started off quite tragically for all of us here in north country Minnesota. It FROZE two nights in a row. I know we we

September 2020 started off quite tragically for all of us here in north country Minnesota. It FROZE two nights in a row. I know we weren’t the only ones hit by the deep freeze but wow did that come on hard and fast. Fortunately we did return to “normal” temps but, of course, summer was just over after that. The constant joke I saw on Facebook was, “The temperature went from 90 to 50 like it saw a state trooper!” And it REALLY did. I’ve seen that meme just about every year on Facebook that I can remember but it has never been more accurate than THIS year. I guess it is 2020 so nobody is exactly surprised… maybe a little disappointed though! Read the rest of the post »

Barn Photo Gallery – Beauty is in the eye of the Beholder

A photo gallery of an old barn in northern minnesota with a broken spine, fallen down roof, proving that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

My old barn did not quite make it through our winter of 2018-2019 – its back fell in. (As most of you know, we were heart broken. This is where my aunt and mom grew up. This was my grandparents’ dairy barn.) It was built in 1929 and it was already many years too late to save the roof/hay mow when I came along and purchased my Grandparents’ farm in 2015. Living up on the Hubbard prairie in northern Minnesota I am very familiar with the suddenly empty space of a barn that was finally removed after it had fallen. (SO MANY.) Read the rest of the post »

August 2020 – Actually getting in reach of ALL of our summer goals!

August 2020 went by far too quickly for my liking. I promised I would kick my panicking ass in gear and get some things done this month

August 2020 went by far too quickly for my liking which is always true. I’m a total summer person and August is my favorite month. I promised myself last month that I would kick my ass in gear and get some things done this month and, lo and behold, I actually did! Lodi started us off by taking it upon himself to do something that’s been on my list for the last two years. Remember that pile of dirt I had dropped off so I could use it to hand shovel in a very dangerous dried up well out in the barn? Also remember I didn’t use all of it so its just been a sitting eye sore ever since? Not anymore! Read the rest of the post »

July 2020 starting with a heat wave that totally BROKE me

Lodi and I living through July 2020 in absolute bliss, enjoying all the Minnesota has to offer which is total summertime Heaven, nothing better!

July 2020. Every. Single. Year. I panic right now. Whether its because we hit the longest day of the year in late June. Or that the year is suddenly HALF over or its because I just got a flier in the mail about purchasing pellets for this winter. OR, the fact that we just put up the hay for the horses also FOR THIS WINTER. Every. Single. Year. I panic about everything that isn’t done yet that needs to be done before the snow flies. As if, suddenly, two days passed June, the count down begins. I lose my damn mind. Read the rest of the post »

June 2020 Gardens – For the Love of Dirt and the Spring Photo Gallery!

Continuing the tradition of every year buying, planning and planting over a weekend with my awesome mom in our 2020 gardens, Lodi joined us this year!

2020 Gardens – June blog post. One of my favorite moments of every year is when I open the windows in the master bedroom and know I probably won’t have to close them again for several months. After closed doors, no fresh air, cooped up and freezing outside its absolute Heaven to me. Fortunately Lodi is a lot like me and opens all our doors if he gets home before I do. I hate air conditioning. This house stays really cool most of the time but this June pushed us to our limit! Read the rest of the post »

May 2020 – Flowers to be Planted, Spring is Here, Life Goes On

May 2020 was a far less freaky month for me than April was - I guess I adapted to the pace of quarantine. The farm here bleeding heart spring photo gallery

May 2020 was a far less freaky month for me than April was – I guess I “adapted” to the pace of quarantine. Disinfecting my entire day job became thoughtless habit, avoiding people at the store became second nature (not that it wasn’t already for this introvert…) and emotionally freaking out about the craziness became impossible to keep up. Saying we “got used” to living in a world in the midst of a global pandemic sounds insane but bills still needed to be paid. Gardens still needed to be planted. Life still deserved to be lived. Life does always, somehow, keep going on. Read the rest of the post »

2020 Summer To Do List and Plans for Next Fall and Winter too

Covering my garage walls with plastic and then bubble wrap insulation with help from two friends on a hot day before moving on to hanging a door

At the end of 2019 I tackled my Winter to do list and completed a total overhaul of my living room and a makeover for my guest bedroom too. (More about the bedroom coming soon!) Those two spaces were my two biggest items so I’m happy with what I completed – but its time to start thinking about summer already! Which means its time to make some new lists and put a couple of things on the back burner for next winter. Read the rest of the post »

April 2020, Finding Silver Linings and Ways to Keep our Sanity

A farmhouse living room remodel renovation reveal. Farm house living with a boho and practical twist, finally completing the main floors of my home

I rewrote my last blog post about a thousand times because of Covid-19 changing our lives by the minute. I really regret that now because I deleted a lot of what had been going on with us before everything went to hell. These little updates I put out once a month have become a bit of a journal for me that I’ve really liked to have. So I’m going to start writing in more past tense about the whole month – so this was our month of April 2020 at Grandma’s House. Read the rest of the post »

Almost Spring 2020 – Uncertain times

Spring 2020 at Grandma's house DIY making the decision for Lodi and Annie to move in with me here at Stoyrhardt Farm - I'm getting room mates!

Almost Spring 2020 – So, as most of you know, I generally have projects/posts complete and scheduled for publication a couple of months ahead of time. I don’t mean for you guys to not see what I’m working on as its happening but deadlines kill me. It is what is. However, this doesn’t totally ring true of my personal updates/blog posts like this one. Generally I write these a couple of weeks (maybe a month) before they come out here. (That’s about as close to a deadline as my anxiety will let me get.) However… Read the rest of the post »

Birthday in the Icy Tundra and Getting Through a Frightening Diagnosis

Well I am REALLY into my 30s now... 34th Birthday in the Icy Tundra Nobody likes Minnesota in February. If its not a blizzard on my birthday then its COLD

Lodi and I both have terrible birthday dates for where we live in north country. His late January birthday and my late February birthday means that NO ONE (including us) wants to do a damned thing because its either a blizzard going on outside OR, maybe even worse, dangerously cold out. My family has always done all they can to rally for me and throw something resembling a party but, this year, I accepted defeat. For both birthdays we kept it low key then everyone returned to their respective hibernating. Read the rest of the post »

2019 Recap – The Year that Broke My Barn and I Found My Heart

2019 Recap, a winter that broke my barn and a fall where I found my heart, After my divorce I am in a place of happiness now where I never thought possible

2019 Recap, starting with a record-breakingly-awful winter that went way beyond driving us all out of our minds. When I wrote my first blog post in January of 2019 I was feeling pretty good actually! My pellet stove was keeping up, I had a warm and wonderful home, and, at least compared to the winter before it, things were going just fine in my life. I bought myself some ridiculously awesome jammie pants and, for the first time EVER, stayed in them and did nothing. I know, it sounds silly, but I’m usually dressed and in my shoes within 15 minutes of getting out of bed. A conversation at a family gathering enlightened me that its genetic. Read the rest of the post »

Dreaming of Gardening! A few of my Favorite Xmas Gifts!

A few of my favorite gifts I recieved this xmas holiday christmas, gardening tools, colander, tall socks, fleece sheets and new towels!

A few of my Favorite gifts I received this Christmas! It probably won’t surprise anyone to hear that my Amazon wishlist is pretty much full of VERY practical items. My cousin was like, “You’re no fun, add something fun!” BUT I LOVE PRACTICAL AND USEFUL. Still though the majority of it might be practical but its many things that I won’t buy for myself because they still feel like something I don’t ABSOLUTELY NEED. (Miss frugal here, its a sickness…) Which means, every Xmas, I feel utterly and totally spoiled! Here are a few of my favorite gifts from this years holiday! Read the rest of the post »

Happy Thankful Holidays and the 2019 Winter Photo Gallery

Happy Bird Day, Xmas and New Years from my little spot here in Grandma's House! Weather report is short and brutal. Winter started and no one is happy about

Happy Bird Day, Xmas and New Year from my little spot here in Grandma’s House! Weather report is short and brutal. We saw record breaking lows at the end of October/early November and, honestly, though it did “warm” up to average temps – it just kind of set the tone. Winter started then on the weekend after Thanksgiving and dumped our entire state with everyone seeing AT LEAST 8 inches of snow and nobody was happy about it. Speaking of Bird Day I just realized I didn’t wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving last month! I hope you had a wonderful day and, of course, had something to be thankful for. Read the rest of the post »

Winter To Do List 2019-2020 : Let’s try this again!

2019-2020 Winter to do list at grandma's house diy, house projects, living room renovation, adding a book shelf above my master bedroom headboard, love book

I didn’t “quite” complete everything on last years winter to do list but, to be fair, I didn’t really think I was going to LOL – it was A LOT. I did get ALL but one thing done on that list though! I completed My Workshop, My Laundry Room, My Entryway/Dining Room AND My Kitchen! Moving on now to the rest of my home this winter! Read the rest of the post »

November: Chilling on my Couch in the Kitchen and a Pumpkin Party!

A snowy and cold November starting out winter off in the expected way in northern Minnesota. Getting to know my house again and getting cozy.

November hit us hard with serious near record breaking cold temperatures. It was a touch disheartening… I’m still enjoying the fact that its NOT summer though as with finally completing my summer to do list this chick was wore out! So I’m still enjoying my house and my whole world narrowing down to walls again as I spent every possible second this summer outside working. Give me a month and I know my tune will be totally different and I will be quite DONE with winter! Read the rest of the post »

Life Changes, Happy Beginnings & the 2019 Fall Photo Gallery

Life Changes, Happy Beginnings & the 2019 Fall Photo Gallery After being alone for two years after throwing my ex husband out, I actually met someone. Happy

Life Changes and the 2019 Fall photo gallery of my little farm. Its been nearly two years since I threw my ex husband out. I have celebrated being single and have happily remained that way ever since. I think many of us know what its like to come to that realization: being alone is a far better reality then surviving in a loveless marriage. I’ve been a third wheel for a LONG time (both now and for years before my marriage), I’ve never had any trouble buying my own drinks, dancing with myself and getting my own self safely home. Read the rest of the post »

The Last Harvest – Pickles, Pellets, Hay and Cooler Days

Saying goodbye to summer, embracing cooler days, harvest, pickle, harvesting the last of my garden and preparing for winter with hay and pellets

The last harvest. September for us Minnesotans is about winding down and truly preparing ourselves for winter. Most of my family and friends think I hate winter. But that’s not exactly the case, I just really LOVE summer! And after shoveling snow for six months last winter I can honestly say that I did not look forward to September this year at all. Nor did I look forward to filling my closets with pellets for my stove. Or filling my horse shed with hay. Or harvesting the last of my garden. Read the rest of the post »

Updating my Horse Shed – The Dog Days of Summer Winding Down

Updating my Horse Shed - The Dog Days of Summer Winding Down. Adding a wall of plywood, shelves and hay storage for my horse shed along with a solar light!

Updating my horse shed with plywood, a solar light and shelf and my tiger lily photo gallery! With August sliding away I am thinking along with the rest of my fellow Minnesotans: Where the heck did summer go?! August has always been my favorite month of the year. Maybe because I was born in February I am cold blooded – I wish I could take a heat lamp everywhere with me like I’m an iguana. There is literally nothing I hate more on this planet than air conditioning and, considering we shoveled snow for 6 months this last winter, I think my feelings are quite reasonable. Read the rest of the post »

Summer Planning for Winter and My GLORIOUS Peonies and Gardens!

Summer vegetable garden and updates on the farm, eating dinner in the garden, blooming perenials of every kind and a ton of peony, peonies, blossom, bloom!

2019 Summer Updates – one happily tired girl reporting in! We have landed in the time of year now when all of us Minnesotans have to start thinking about winter… in JULY! Its a travesty! When I got the letter reminding me that it was time to buy pellets for my stove I just wanted to sit on the ground and throw a tantrum. Not long after that I got the call from my hay guy letting me know he would be dropping off my horses winter hay soon. There was no denying it at that point but that doesn’t mean I have to be happy about it! Read the rest of the post »

2019 Spring Gallery – My June Farm, my lawn actually went to seed! lol

2019 spring photo gallery, garden, beats, lilacs, apple trees and blooms of dandelions on an old farm with a broken barn and old horses grazing

2019 Spring Photo Gallery. So I kinda spaced out the mowing situation at my place this spring. Mostly I just don’t care but, also… I really just don’t care. I did kinda want my dandelions to do their thing for the bumbles and also wanted to see how well the clover I planted last year came in this year. Fortunately I do not live near town and my neighbors also don’t care lol… or, at least they don’t care enough to complain. Gotta love country folk we really just ignore our neighbors doing their thing in the hopes that they’ll also ignore us doing our thing lol. Read the rest of the post »

Moving the Stock Tank to a Safe Place in the Back of my Garage

Moving my horses and their water tank to my garage after our barn has become a hazard because the roof fell in this last awful winter of 2018-2019

In May of 2015 we had electricity run from my main power pole to the barn because there was a water hydrant out there (dug many decades ago) hooked up all the way underground to my water in my basement. We brought the horses home in June of that same year and, initially, that’s simply where they hung out, that’s where I fed them, where I put up their red fence corral, where I stored their hay and where their water tank was. We cleaned out the old lean-to off the back of the barn for their shelter too. Sadly though, as many of you already know, this last record breakingly awful winter was too much for my old barn (and thousands of others) which means it is truly no longer safe. Read the rest of the post »

Spring updates and, of course, I have a Summer to do list!

Summer to-do-list finally finishing my garage, putting in raised beds in my garden and replacing the stone on the outside of my house with siding!

Summer is actually on its way! OMG for real I think most of us Minnesotans began to give up hope that spring would ever get here! But, thank the universe, it has arrived and of course I have a list lol! Now, unlike My Winter To-Do-List my summer to-do-list I actually might finish THIS summer. I never really thought that I would get through my ENTIRE winter to-do-list this last winter, but this horrible winter did mean I was trapped inside for nearly five months so I did get through a lot of it! Read the rest of the post »

2018 Recap of yard work, completed rooms & a new home for my horses!

I have FINALLY finished cleaning up my yard and I fixed my garage's soffits and moved my horses' into their new shed and hauled hay bales

2018 Recap! I was freaking out last week about a couple of things I need to get done ASAP now that spring is finally here. When I get stressed I get snippy and very vocal with lots and lots of words generally through messenger. Fortunately I have people who put up with me and know that, in less then 30 seconds, I will be apologizing. How I deal with things is to tackle whatever is in front of me and basically forget anything that’s finished by placing it behind me forever. But, from time to time, I remind my family (and they remind me) just HOW MUCH we have done and just how incredibly far we’ve all come. Read the rest of the post »

I am so very sorry to say that my old barn had a couple very bad nights

After the worst winter in weather records my ninety year old barn's back broke. I am so very sad and so very sorry to say that part of her went down.

I am going to start this post out with the exact same thing I told my Mom that morning this week when I called her, “I’m fine, don’t panic! But… I think something… happened to the barn.” We talked for a minute. I told her I did not want to approach whatever it was alone and she said she’d be over soon. If I EVER call my family they know that it is a life or death situation. I DO NOT answer calls nor do I call anyone. Truly, I almost just messaged her but I didn’t want to miss her before she left for work. Read the rest of the post »

My Birthday Present to Myself: A Stay-cation to Work on My House!

My Birthday Present to Myself: A Vacation to Work on My Kitchen! Painting away the smoke stains, moving forward with my remodel, how we faired this winter!

For the first time in the nine years I’ve been at my day job I took more than four days off in a ROW. I took the 21st-26th off over my 33rd birthday in late February. Everyone asked me, “Where are you going?” Because, during February in Minnesota, if you take that much time off, you are almost certainly going somewhere South. Even my family was like, “We’ll feed the horses and fill the pellet stove! It would be so great for you to get away!” Read the rest of the post »

The Coldest Spot in the Nation – My Backyard!

Living in the coldest spot in the nation during the January 2018 polar vortex in northern Minnesota. Horses water, being sure to stay safe and warm.

Well, it was officially announced on Thursday morning that my spot was the coldest in the entire nation. Yay. No, that’s not something we want to be known for. Five miles off my back deck (as the crow flies) is my little home town and at the airport they officially registered -42 real temp and somewhere around a -65 degree windchill. Its enough to turn a grown woman like me into a pouty toddler whose hungry and needs a nap. “Really!?” That’s so cold its impossible to really comprehend! Read the rest of the post »

Winter photo gallery – Learning the importance of doing NOTHING

Winter photo gallery of my northern MN farm This year winter really slammed us. Officially, as of right now, we've had snow for FOUR months. 2019 new year

This year winter really slammed us here in northern Minnesota. Officially, as of right now, we’ve had snow for over THREE months as we saw our first snow at the end of September. Right before new years we got hit with 16 inches of snow in less than 48 hours and then on new years day I woke up to a temperature of -24 degrees and a -45 degree windchill at 8am. Read the rest of the post »

Harman Pellet Stove Review – The Work, The Cost & The Upkeep

My harmon pellet stove is incredibly clean burning, how I clean it, the glass, maintain it and the work involved in owning a pellet stove, I love it!

My new Harman Pellet Stove. First I have to start this post with a disclaimer. After living with a wood stove for three years and hauling wood 300 feet from my shed to the house alone last winter I am about as biased as they come. Is having a pellet stove as easy as adjusting the thermostat to a furnace? Absolutely not. Is having a pellet stove a cake walk compared to what I was doing? Absolutely! Read the rest of the post »

My Winter To-Do-List… OMG winter might not be long enough!

My Winter To-Do-List just keeps getting longer lol. There is so much I'm planning to do in my home and I am SO excited to get started!

My Winter To-Do-List just keeps getting longer lol. There is so much I’m planning to do in my home and I am SO excited to get started! The first one is the glaring one that has been staring at me ALL summer. I really need to finally tackle my workshop and get it complete. I spent literally this entire summer looking for that one tool I could never find. Read the rest of the post »

My Farm Fall Photo Gallery and that I made it to November!

Spiked cider a Bon fire and Someone to Cuddle with: Fall Photo Gallery. Autmun has descended on my farm in northern Minnesota, good company for the cold

Fall Photo Gallery. My farm falling into autumn and just the fact that I made it to November of 2018! I learned a lot of things over the last twelve months of my life. #1: If you want a job done right and on time tell a woman she can’t do it. #2: Its ok to be totally unreasonable and sometimes it is absolutely necessary. And #3: I also learned that the people who truly love us already forgive us for doing whatever it is we need to do to heal. Read the rest of the post »

Filling my Pit of Doom with Dirt… Just call me PACK MULE

Ok, that's what I thought because apparently I AM A PACK MULE and my new middle name is MANUAL LABOR. Filling a well shaft with lots of dirt before winter

Have I mentioned that I’m starting to feel like a Pack Mule? Maybe thirty or forty times already? Ok, that’s what I thought because apparently I AM A PACK MULE and my new middle name is MANUAL LABOR. So its not like I didn’t see this job coming before winter… its more like I just pretended it wasn’t on the way because… Giant pile of dirt is my nightmare. Read the rest of the post »

Operation BLISSFULLY HAPPY: My (updated) 1, 2 and 10 year plans!

When I wrote the first Operation BLISSFULLY HAPPY: plans post back in March I was SO excited to finally have control of my finances again. But, like with everything, the true extent of my freedom had not totally sunk in yet. I had just ended a relationship and was still finding my footing as a single gal. Well, I have officially found my footing lol Read the rest of the post »

My greener, healthier lifestyle & products that made my summer awesome!

My far more frugal, greener and healthier life (since my divorce) eliminating all toxins, creating a green energy efficient home, cleaner eating and living.

I think a lot of people understand what its like to be the only person in a relationship (or family) who is health, frugal or eco conscious. It can be a HUGE struggle! Whether its to save money, do things that are greener for the environment or, just plain, trying to live a healthier life. Here are a few of the things that I’ve been doing this summer and a couple products that made my life awesome! Read the rest of the post »

My horses moved into their new shed and I finally fixed my garage!

I have FINALLY finished cleaning up my yard and I fixed my garage's soffits and moved my horses' into their new shed and hauled hay bales

My horses are moved in and I also got my garage fixed finally! I had four things on my list that I HAD to get finished before winter and I officially have three of them checked off. Early this spring I got my horses’ water tank moved into the barn and wrapped in insulation, I have a new way to heat my home and I now just hauled my leftover hay bales down from the barn and covered my septic line that ran under my deck. Read the rest of the post »

Pellet Stove: A Final decision on how I’m going to heat my home (I am SO Excited!!)

Behind the scenes here at Grandma's house things have been very hard. As a writer I've thought about writing my memoirs, starting back when I was a kid and working my way forward but before I can ever start I always hit something that I'm just not ready to write about. Divorce

Why a pellet stove turned out to be the answer to all of my worries. Well, it happened, we are well past the halfway point of summer and everyone I know (including my chipmunks, birds and especially myself) are flying into a panic screaming, “WINTER IS COMING!!!!” I still have one heckuva long list to complete by the time the snow flies but one of the only things that HAD to be done is in the works! Read the rest of the post »

Cleaning up my yard and doing some serious closet organization

I have FINALLY finished cleaning up my yard and serious closet organization, emptying shoe closet and adding shoes shelves for a great entryway, clean yard

Cleaning up my house and yard. Reaching full on adult hood because a huge empty closet totally made me thrilled! OMG I was beginning to think I would never get here lol! Last update I posted I had only one last pile of crap my ex left for me around my old “tack shack” which is now my new wood shed. Well, I finally got it all hauled off and thrown away! Ugh my poor back is SO sore, why is it that everything I do turns me into a pack mule?! Read the rest of the post »

Learning to pace myself & enjoying the two days we had of spring

I was so excited to get pictures of all of my lilacs and trees blooming but then I blinked worked really hard on my yard and have to learn to pace myself

I was so excited to get pictures of all of my lilacs and apple trees blooming but then I blinked and BOOM, spring was over. It was like we went from -20 degrees to 90 in less then a month… Oh wait – I think we actually did that! Our trees and bushes literally bloomed, pollinated over night and dropped it all the next day. Everyone I know who has ever had an allergy said this was the WORST spring they’ve ever experienced! Read the rest of the post »

My poor foot! Doggo sitting for my best friend and my Happy Horses!

Always wear work boots no matter how hot it is because you might just drop a fence post pounder on your poor foot! And Dog sitting for my best friend! dogger kisses, cuddles and spoiling my two god pups absolutely rotten. Do you know what kind of bird this is?

So I hurt my foot. Well it does seem to happen no matter what I do and no matter how careful I am. As my best friend Rachie always says in shock at me, “You kicked your own ass!” SO TRUE! I am VERY good at beating myself up. To be fair to myself though it was a really warm day and we were only pounding in fence posts so it wasn’t that dumb of a choice to wear tennis shoes instead of boots. Read the rest of the post »

2018: Tackling my spring to-do list, a happy heart and very sore feet!

Tackling my 2018 spring and summer to-do list, cleaning out the wood shed, preparing it for hay and making a pile of trash to take to the dump. Cleansing my life with fire, purging myself from a horrible and toxic relationship by burning what he left behind.

Back in early March I wrote a post called Operation: BLISSFULLY HAPPY that detailed my plans over the next 1, 2 and 10 years. I’ve also been updating and tackling my to-do list for my entire home as I go here with the weather causing changes and adjustments. When spring FINALLY arrived I hit the ground running and put myself to work starting with my wood shed! Read the rest of the post »

Black and White. Old photos, my farm, my home, my heart.

Black and White. Old photos, my farm, my home, my family pictures throughout the last seventy years. My grandparents farm left to me in their passing has gone through numerous changes over the years from renovations they did to my own giant renovation to make this farm my forever home.

Old photos of my farm. The history here may be the best thing about living on my grandparents’ old farm. My mom’s cousin came and visited us and always our conversations turn to olden times and the old photos come out. Knowing so many people loved this place over the years and being able to hear their stories adds so much to my life here. We put together a family reunion a few years back and meeting family I had never met before was really cool but the neatest part was picking up their old family photo albums and seeing old photos of my farm! Knowing people I had not even ever met were sharing memories of this place from years upon years ago was absolutely incredible. Read the rest of the post »

Spring is finally here: This weekend at Grandma’s House!

Spring is finally here: This weekend at Grandma's House! Moving my horses water tank from the pasture to the barn, moving shelves and more things from my basement to my new workshop. Tackling my big yard plan and reminding myself that nothing needs to be done right now, I am literally without deadlines.

As most of you have probably figured out already patience is NOT one of my strong suits – when I want to do something I do it right NOW and with spring finally here I have literally had to grab hold of myself and remind me that: “There are NO deadlines! Stop freaking out!!” Of course that kind of pep talk only goes so far and I am literally sitting on my hands at my day job because being behind a desk just FEELS SO WRONG! Because, finally, after that endless ridiculous winter, spring is here! Read the rest of the post »

Bad things come in threes and spring has FINALLY arrived!

Behind the scenes here at Grandma's house things have been very hard. As a writer I've thought about writing my memoirs, starting back when I was a kid and working my way forward but before I can ever start I always hit something that I'm just not ready to write about. Divorce

Well that was one hell of a winter! I wrote a post awhile back called When it Rains it Pours and I really can’t begin to describe it better then that. This winter attacked me and I attacked it in every way possible. Things I wanted to save up for forced me to deal with them RIGHT NOW. I haven’t mentioned any of this yet simply because I was so fed up I didn’t want to talk about it! Read the rest of the post »

New site design! Storyhardt Farm est. 12/15/17 Welcome to Grandma’s House!

Storyhardt Farm est. 12/15/17 Welcome to Grandma's House! Storyhardt Farm est. 12/15/17 Welcome to Grandma's House! With my divorce finally ending it was time to give not only my home and my whole life a makeover but it was just the right time to give this blog a new site design too!

With the commencing of my Operation BLISSFULLY HAPPY a lot has changed here in my little farmhouse and ALL of it has been toward becoming, you guessed it, BLISSFULLY HAPPY! Storyhardt Farm became my farm’s new name with a new sign to go with it so it only seemed right to give my blog a facelift too! I hope you guys like it and I hope it works better for everyone now, makes it easier to get around and, most importantly, I hope it gets you to what you’re looking for faster than ever! *breaks a figurative champagne bottle on the side of her monitor* I christen you: Storyhardt Farm! Read the rest of the post »

Operation BLISSFULLY HAPPY: My 1, 2 and 10 year plans!

Making a financial plan after a divorce, finally being able to implement the decisions required to meet my 1, 2 and 10 year financial goals for both me, my home and my entire life. Freedom in finally being able to work toward what I have always wanted in my life plan!

Now commencing operation: BLISSFULLY HAPPY! The last blow my ex dealt me was when he was forced to write down his income in the divorce papers. After telling me for our entire relationship that he was barely getting by it turns out he had more money in his account that December then I had made in the ENTIRE previous year. I had been paying for everything I could which was all but one of our household bills and truly believed that we were barely staying afloat. He called me then, when he was filling out the divorce papers, because he was really worried a judge would try to give me some of his money. If there was ever an example of the kind of person I never want to be in my life: It was him on that day. Read the rest of the post »

When it rains it pours . . . or, because its winter, it snows!

After finding out the financial lies my ex husband had been feeding me I was staring at my bills watching all of my dreams shatter before my eyes. But, sometime during one of the very worst months of my life, my little blog absolutely exploded and the only real explanation is that I removed him from my life.

When it rains it pours… I am a firm believer that if it can go wrong it probably will which all adds up to a pleasantly surprised attitude when things actually go right and a roll-up-the-sleeves-to-fix-it attitude when things go wrong. So, when things started going right here at Grandma’s House it didn’t really make any sense to me… especially considering how I just got a divorce and so December 2017 was one of the hardest months of my life. Read the rest of the post »

Finding my new footing and keeping up with the wood stove

Winter in Minnesota after a divorce while heating with a wood stove. Finding my new footing and my new reality with wonderful friends, loved ones and people that support and flock around me. Keeping the house warm, the horses fed and finding peace.

With temperatures plummeting into the negatives I am learning how to keep up with my wood stove in my new reality after a divorce. I saw a meme on Facebook the other day, it asked: “If you could have anything in 2018 what would it be?” My immediate answer was: PEACE. A million dollars would be great too lol but my heart is still just utterly and completely exhausted. In the last month I’ve devoured over 30 books on my kindle and there is no hope of that slowing down any time soon, thank goodness my family purchased me several more books for Christmas! Read the rest of the post »

Finally seeing an end to 2017 – Getting through hard times

Behind the scenes here at Grandma's house things have been very hard. As a writer I've thought about writing my memoirs, starting back when I was a kid and working my way forward but before I can ever start I always hit something that I'm just not ready to write about. Divorce

Finally seeing an end. Behind the scenes here at Grandma’s house things have been very hard. As a writer I’ve thought about writing my memoirs, starting back when I was a kid and working my way forward but before I can ever start I always hit something that I’m just not ready to write about. And I understand in that moment that I may NEVER be ready to write about it. Things have been getting worse here for months but until the final day happened, and I got some distance, I knew I wouldn’t be able to talk about it here on the blog for awhile. Read the rest of the post »

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