Window Box Planters

This warmer weather has us thinking that spring might be here to stay. Or is it too soon to put away the snow shovel? It really is hard to know what Mother Nature will send your way when you live in Wisconsin. Nonetheless, we are crossing our fingers and hoping for spring, mostly so we can start designing our flower boxes!

We created a Pinterest board with our favorite flower box ideas and color palettes. You can take a look at it to get some inspiration for your own home, and to see what we are loving this year.

A wonderful mix repeating the purple from the sage

A wonderful mix repeating the purple from the sage

A more formal approach with pops of red

A more formal approach with pops of red

An informal mix of purple and magenta

An informal mix of purple and magenta

A brighter choice with magenta

A brighter choice with magenta

We are torn between a whimsical and natural looking “wild flower” assortment, and a more-tailored arrangement of blooms. We think we have a favorite, but we are hoping to hear from our followers on which look they like the best. You can head over to our Instagram page to help us decide!

It is really reassuring that we can change the look of our landscaping up each year so we don’t need to stress out about permanence.  Whatever we end up with, we will make sure to repeat the floral groupings at the front porch in a planter, to balance the home and to carry over the colors and texture of the botanicals from our window boxes. This is a fun project that we looking forward to taking on in the next few weeks.  Here’s hoping for spring!

#34 Wood Flooring Choice

We’ve been in our home for 8 months now. Many of our visitors have commented on how surprised they are not to see scratches in our wood floor. We’re also impressed with how it’s holding up. Check it out!

This flooring comes with the stain and finish (prefinished) already on it. It gets installed early in the finish carpentry phase of building. The builder covers the floor well and takes precautions to protect the new flooring but it’s still a construction zone. Even with all of that work being done on the floor and even with our active 7 year daughter and our 7 year old yellow lab, the scratches are really minimal.

Our wood floor is red oak. It is made by Lauzon Flooring and it’s part of their Ambiance collection. Our specific style is called Sincero. Besides the beauty and durability, this floor has an added health benefit. The technology is called pure genius. For our readers that are local, you can purchase it at H&R Carpets Inc in Waunakee. Here’s a previous post describing the technology of this smart floor.

We had the hardwood installed in the kitchen, hallway, living room, art room, dining room, and the master bedroom. While we sometimes miss the cozy feel of carpet in the living room, we enjoy how the rooms flow from one to the other instead of being broken up by a change in flooring. With that said, if it’s play time with our daughter, we head down to the basement for sure. There are yards and yards of soft and cozy carpet down there!

#33 Tech to simplify our day

Automated Faucets

1. We automated the faucets with this motion or touch technology from Delta Faucets. It keeps the countertops clean from dripping hands and it keeps faucets clean from dirty fingers. Oh, and it makes the necessary yet mundane things like washing hands go faster. It even has an LED light that indicates the water temperature. We have these faucets in the main bathroom, the master bathroom, and in the kitchen.

Automated Blinds

2. We automated the blinds with PowerView and SoftTouch technology from Hunter Douglas. With a quick tap on the wand or a click on the remote, the blind moves in place while you walk away. Once again, a twice-daily task is faster making our day more efficient and our outlook (literally) sunnier.

Automated Garbage Bin

3. We automated the garbage cabinet with servo drive technology from Blum. With a gentle push on the handle or the door, the garbage pops out at me. Our first thought was to keep the cabinet in good shape but having the ability to open this cabinet hands free is awesome (like when I just cracked an egg)! It’s another small way to make daily tasks more efficient.

Automated Lighting

4. We automated the lighting with motion sensors. More often than not, my hands are full when I'm entering certain rooms like the mud room or the laundry room. A motion sensor removes the burden of stumbling through a dark room or having to drop everything to flip a switch. Every time I enter the laundry room with a full basket of clothes in my hand, I’m so grateful for that sensor. Also, coming in from the garage with my arms loaded with my work gear and the mail, I’m so grateful for that sensor. We used the Lutron brand in our home which also has some great additional features that allows us to control some of the dimmers with an app on our phone.

All of these features cost a bit more but daily life is so much more efficient! Keep in mind that many of the features involved some planning and a lot of help from our electrician. We can still both recall our frozen feet and hands when doing the electrical walk through very early on in the building process. Thinking through these details, however, has proven to be so WORTH IT!

#32 Backyard Views

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Brent is bundled up tight in a blanket lined chore coat with insulated leather gloves. It’s a beautiful crisp late fall morning after a fresh blanket of snow has fallen. He’s riding a trusted companion across a field while double checking the fence lines for any issues that might have occurred during the summer. He’s listening to the honking of the V's of geese flying south for the winter. In the distanance, cattle are mooing their displeasure to make sure that you know hay stores have dwindled and it's time to replenish them with another round bale. Sounds like a perfect story from a ranch just outside Bozeman Montana or.... 100 yds from Home in the Heartland?

Like some of you know, the property we purchased is within whistling distance from where Brent keeps his horse. He is happy to prove to this to our visitors by standing on the screen porch and erupting with a high pitched whistle to see the ears on his horse perk up on the pasture just north of our property line. Even more proof is the ability, when the last of the farmers crops have been brought in for the year, to ride out in the middle of the field across the back windows of our house. Picturesque and another reason we love our "Home in the Heartland."