Who are we?

A meeting place for regulars to discuss the lighter side of old-houses.

Moderators: oldhouse, TinaB, Don M, Schag

Postby Misalou on Tue May 10, 2005 9:14 pm

Hi Ken!

You know, I read the article in the Portland Press Herald about how you and your wife started OHW and had no idea you were a fellow Mainer until that day :) I've been enjoying this site for over a year now!

I'm Melissa...married to a wonderful guy who when he saw into our late 1800's farmhouse before I did, knew he was beat because I would love it!

We've been here in Southern Maine for all of our lives, but bought this home 4 years ago. Since that time we've done much work to fix issues in the addtion that was added sometime in the 20's.

Now that the "fires" are put out, so to speak, we are turning our attention to the areas of the home that we would like to restore/improve.

My hubby's passsion is really the landscaping and last spring he added 2 ponds with fountains that we love to hang out by. This spring he added lights to them, which created a whole new night effect.

This is a great thread! :) Nice to meet you all!

Postby jeepnstein on Wed May 11, 2005 11:05 am


I'm Jim, 41, married to Lettie, 40. We have twin sons who are just turning three. I'm in IT for a local government and she is in healthcare. In addition to working on the house and raising the kids, I'm active as a deacon in my church and a part-time Deputy Sheriff. My wife is also active in the Church and is beginning to do party planning. We used to travel quite a bit but that is on hold for a few years. Our lives have been richly blessed with good jobs, wonderful kids, and supportive families.

We have been in the Pile of Bricks for a couple of years now and the work has been a blur. Bat exclusion, rewiring, new plumbing, ceilings, plaster repair, wooden storms, air conditioning, floor refinishing, it's been a real test of time management to get anything done. We're just about done with a new kitchen and then I think we'll just cruise for a while. By cruising I mean tuck-pointing some masonry, doing a few more windows, painting the roofs, and pouring some sidewalks. I'd also like to make up new gutters but may hold off until I can scrounge enough scaffolding to work safely.

The house was in relatively untouched condition. The original owners really never did anything to it and the nice lady we bought it from really did make the effort to keep things intact. She went out of her way to do no harm to the structure. It was built like they really meant business. Everything is on 16 inch centers, settling is minimal, the basement was in good shape, it just had great bones all the way around. Well, except for the colony of 400 or 500 bats in the attic...

My wife is relatively new to old house renovation. I grew up doing it both on rental properties and a very nice foursquare that my parents bought for practically nothing. I've learned a little of everything and a bunch of nothing from some very fine craftsmen. Lettie handles all the decisions of color and finish and has a very good eye for it. She also is quite skilled with a sewing machine and is doing our window coverings and a bit of upholstery work. I was fortunate to be taught by some "old school" types that just aren't around much anymore. My long-term goal is to build a shop on the property so I can do custom millwork and pay for my insatiable tool habit.
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Postby Jack Willard on Wed May 11, 2005 11:43 am


Let me know when you start designing that shop building. I built mine a couple of years ago and it's quite wonderful. I can certainly relate to the custom millwork and insatiable tool habit. I can share the shop design drawing with you.
Jack Willard
ImageOn the way to California in 1972
Jack Willard
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Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2003 11:05 am
Location: Grass Valley, California

Postby Bridget on Wed May 11, 2005 7:54 pm

Very cool thread!

We are Bridget {28} stay at home mom and Phil (29) works from home for an IT company in Cali. We are joined by our two kids boy (7) and girl (3) and our two fat cats.

This is the second house we have owned, the first being a 1970's ranch that we fixed up & sold which gave us enough money to buy this wonderful :wink: 1919 Foursquare.

As much as I love my Foursquare I have been seriously doubting my ability to remain in this house & keep my sanity. I have been tossing around the idea of moving to a smaller house that I will be able to handle & have been keeping an eye on the local real estate, but haven't really voiced any of this to the husband!! I am torn between wanting to be able to spend all my time fixing up this old house & wanting to spend all my time playing with the kids, but life keeps getting in the way of me spending much time doing EITHER of those!! If one of the two have to be sacrificed for me to keep my sanity it WILL be the house....though the kids may enjoy some time away from Mom!!

Hmmmm....maybe that was TMI?!? Feels good to get it out & since my husband NEVER looks on here he will never know!!

The meeting sounds like loads of fun & your property sounds amazing!! Keep us posted about the details!!
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Location: Jersey Shore

No kidding on the IT stuff

Postby Karen on Wed May 11, 2005 9:01 pm

Hi all, I'm Karen (not MoonShadow) who's renting the old home. I'm 38, divorced, have 4 part-time kids, 3 full-time little dogs, 2 cats bigger than the dogs, and 1 painted turtle. Recently in the insurance industry but am in flux right now; I'm terrible at sales and insurance advice does not a career make. :roll:

I LOVE working on this house, building and making things in general, and do a lot of medieval camping/libing history. I, too, have been in IT but would like to eventually make my living as a graphic artist. Be able to combine the love of art, electronics/technology, and creating things.

I'm in the Monterey Bay area currently, but would kill for an opportunity to be up in Humboldt County. Greg, you are soooo lucky! The University there has an Art Degree program that I want to be in...!

Have enjoyed everyone's stories, ideas, help, etc. - this is fantastic. If I end up not purchasing this little1924 A&C, I know that I do NOT want a 'new' house. Unless it's designed to be an "old house". Between the gardening, restoration, etc., I can't imagine being in a house that was 'done'. Don't get me wrong, I don't have time to do all the things I want to be doing in addition to the house, but it keeps it all 'alive' and part of you, you know?

So nice to meet you all!

Karen in California
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Joined: Mon Dec 20, 2004 6:57 pm
Location: Monterey County, CA

Postby Mrs. T on Thu May 12, 2005 10:24 am

What a great topic idea...

Hi everybody... I'm Amanda, 30, married two years to Tony, 31. Proud parents of a 1+ year old little girl, and proud new owners of a 1905 Colonial Revival on the National Historic Register. I'm in design and software support for a large printing company; he's in real estate.

This is our second old house, the first being a 1940 brick cottage that we outgrew (does 1940 qualify as "old house?" we always just thought of it as "oldER."). I grew up in an old house and never wanted to live in anything else! Lucky for me, I'm in the right city... we have old houses coming out of our ears here in Louisville, in every style and stage of repair you can think of (and affordable too!). Ours in particular is in a state of gentle neglect and shoddy repairs and updates done by our previous owner, most of which we hope to reverse ourselves, learning as we go. We plan to stay here for a very long time, and we think of our new place as the perfect family house. I've enjoyed reading about everyone's experiences here, it's nice to "meet" you all!! :D
Mrs. T
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Joined: Thu Mar 24, 2005 1:27 pm
Location: Louisville, KY

who are we?

Postby sqeak on Thu May 12, 2005 11:01 am

Hey everybody! I'm new here, but thought I might as well jump in.

I'm Linda, to be 50 May 29. Starting out on my own after 20 yrs of marriage, with a great old brick built in the middle of 40 acres. She needs a lot of work, but after surviving 150 yrs, she deserves it! I have a Dobe named Zeus, Molly the black cat, and Butterscoth, a giant yellow tabby, 3 horses, hope to have a few cows. Maybe a couple goats to eat the tangle of multi-flora roses that have taken over the pasture. We had a blended family of his 2 daughters, 32 & 29, my 2 sons, 31 & 25, and our joint effort of a daughter, 19, in college. I work full time in an office, then go to the house for the remainder of the day/night.

Re: No kidding on the IT stuff

Postby Greg on Thu May 12, 2005 4:50 pm

Karen wrote:I'm in the Monterey Bay area currently, but would kill for an opportunity to be up in Humboldt County. Greg, you are soooo lucky! The University there has an Art Degree program that I want to be in...!

Karen in California

Hey, I lived in Santa Cruz for 12 years just before I moved up here 5 years ago. I worked all over Monterey, PG, and Carmel for about 3 years. If your ever up this way let me know and I'll give you the .50¢ tour.
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Location: My Front Parlor

This is great!

Postby Deniseg on Sun May 15, 2005 10:06 pm

just finished reading about you all, and adding my info now. I'm Denise, soon to be 41 in a couple of months, divorced, mother of an 18 y/o son who is graduating in 2 weeks! Also, 1 golden mix, Comet, 2 cats, Mischief & Little Bit, 9 fish, and several squirrels, 1 named Stubby, because something happened to his tale so it is only a stub! He makes me laugh watching him out my living room window, get food out of the feeder. This is my first old house, early 1900's vernacular victorian cottage! My previous house was an 80's ranch in TN. I'm in the medical field, and was lucky enough to live in my old house for a few years before I bought it. My sister and brother-in-law found it for me after they sweet talked me into moving to Ohio to be near them! I have to admit, I cried myself to sleep for about a week after I first moved in. But, this old house just grew on me and before I knew it, I had fallen in love with it! Fortunately for me, it doesn't need a whole lot done. I've been doing a lot of landscapeing, and some interior painting, and redoing the windows in the utility room (replacing sash cords and painting). Right now, my brother-in-law is updating my 100 amp fuse box to a 200 amp breaker box. After that we will be taking care of a few minor wiring problems. After that it will be a new roof, due to damage from the ice storm! Then, I have to start preping for a paint job on the exterior. Finally got my colors picked out! I hope to get that accomplished this year, but with my son starting college, it might have to wait til next. Then it will be mandatory! BTW, my son is an old house and antique lover too!
Nice to meet you all!
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Joined: Tue Dec 09, 2003 2:55 pm
Location: Ohio

Postby ms erickson on Tue May 24, 2005 3:56 pm

I'm Ms. Erickson. I'm 26, and I'm a webmaster at a small liberal arts college. I'm leaving this Fall to go back to school to get my Masters in Textile History. My bachelor's is in Computer Information Systems, so this new degree will be something totally new to me. I love old textiles [quilts, table cloths, embroidered pillowcases], really old treadle sewing machines, and farm sales.
Mr Erickson is 26. He's a manager at a grocery store. He has a degree in Communications/Photojournalism/Philosophy. He can talk your ear off about anything. He loves old cameras and guitars and cars.
We've been married 2 years. Before that we were engaed 5 years [the whole time HE was in college :) ]
We have a 4 month old English Springer Spaniel named Lily. She's the closest thing we have to a kid.
We have a Eastlake Victorian that was split into a duplex in the 1940s. We're converting it back to one house. And getting used to Midwest living [we moved here from Denver]
ms erickson


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