July 25, 2018 – We Bought a House!

After two and a half years of living in the park, we were finally granted permission to move out! We found a little house close to the high school that was perfect for our family, and we closed on July 25. It was such a smooth process that we kept waiting for something to go wrong, but we were lucky and did not run into any major issues.

Our little house!

It had been a long time since we had owned our own home, so we were all looking forward to having a little place to call our own again. As soon as we closed, we immediately started painting. It is an older house (1948) so there was a lot that needed to be freshened up, and a LOT of paneling. The kids all have their own rooms now, so they all picked out the colors they wanted and could not wait to get started! After eight years of sharing a room, they were excited to decorate a space all their own.

This was a hard room to paint…

I think perhaps Nathan’s room was the hardest. He had to paint over really dark blue paint on some walls, and dark paneling on others. We went through a lot of primer, and it took us longer than we had planned, but eventually we had a fresh coat of pain in the whole room. Nathan picked a light blue for his walls with white above the paneling and on the ceiling.

Nathan’s room!

Liam’s room is the exact opposite layout from Nathan’s. He also had really dark paneling, but the painted walls were not nearly so dark, so they were much easier to cover. He picked a light gray for his walls and it turned out really nice. He also chose to go with white above the paneling and on the ceiling.

Liam’s room

Primer on the paneling

His room does not seem quite complete yet. He would like to get a desk, and he would also like a regular bed now that he has enough space. I have been keeping my eyes open for both of these items, so pretty soon hopefully he will be able to finish his room the way he would like. I will have to update his picture when that happens.

Liam’s slightly messy room ūüôā

Catheryn’s room was all paneling, but it was lighter than the boys’ rooms were so it did not take as much primer. She has the only room with carpet, though, so we did have to be a little more careful with that.

Taping off her carpet.

She chose a light green for her walls with white trim. She has a lot of things that have been is boxes for a long time, so she was really excited to get everything out. Her walls are full, but they fit her perfectly, and she absolutely loves her new room.

Catheryn’s room

After the kids’ room were finished, I started painting the rest of the house. Everything now has a fresh coat of paint except for our room, which I will work on as soon as we figure out how to set it up. It is definitely feeling like home!

We have been in our house for a little over a month now and everyone loves it. Liam walks to school now that he is in high school, and he comes home for lunch almost every day. (Shocker, I know!) Picking the twins up is super easy this year, too! I am so grateful we had the opportunity to buy a house.

Another perk of moving out of the canyon is better internet! Hopefully now I will be able to stay a little more up to date. I think for the next couple of weeks I will simply be playing catch up, though!  A lot has happened in the last month!


Most of our volunteer hours here in the park are spent in the gardens, weeding and maintaining or occasionally planting flowers. These last few weeks, however, we were painting. The kids were excited because this was their first painting project. There were days I was convinced they had more paint on themselves than they had actually gotten on the building, but they worked hard and did a really good job.


Seven gallons of paint later, we are all finished and it looks much better. New roof, new windows, fresh coat of paint, all it needs now is a little TLC on the old doors and it will look as good as new. I am so glad we were entrusted with this project because we really did have a good time. Standing out in the sunshine (with the spiders…), painting bugs (and spiders…), running from bees (and spiders…), swatting gnats (and spiders…). I’m pretty sure it doesn’t get much better than that!



Art in the Park

Saturday found us down at Giant Springs, one of the most beautiful and peaceful spots in Great Falls, Montana.

The fish at the hatchery are always fun to feed, although since many other people had the same idea, they were not as hungry as they have been on other days. This is a good thing for them, of course.

The kids even found a snake in the river. I had to remind William a dozen times that he was not to catch it to take it home. Luckily it was just a baby. 

There was also Art in the Park going on. Many artists were set up all around the park and they had their easels set up and were painting and drawing. People have some amazing talent and it was neat to walk around and see all the variety.


Refrigerator Makeover

With three kids in the house, our refrigerator is always covered with school information, birthday invitations, phone numbers and priceless art work. Our magnet collection is always hard at work trying to keep all these items securely in place. Take our magnetic surface away, and we have a pile of papers with no home. That is what happened when we bought our new house.

I had considered taping things to the surface of our non-metallic refrigerator, but Rob had a better solution.

I grabbed my paint brush and got to work. Three coats of primer are recommended. It is incredibly runny, so I spent the majority of my time wiping splatters off the floor.    

After three coats were applied, it was time to paint the surface. We decided on yellow since it is such a clean color, it also goes well with blue, which most of our house happens to be.

Our first color choice was a little too lemony, but after a couple of coats of a lighter shade, it was looking  pretty nice.

It didn’t take very long for the kids to start decorating it for us. The refrigerator is now covered with coloring pages and a Christmas countdown. Now that’s more like it.