Farmhouse fixup | Living the Country Life
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Farmhouse fixup

Before and after; a farmhouse gets a facelift
  • Before

    Alan and Cheryl Eblen live on a family farm near Paynesville, Minnesota, with their four children ranging in age from 5 to 15. When they moved to the property the original house was too far gone to salvage. They moved another old farmhouse onto the site and have been fixing it up over the years.<br>"This is the house after we first moved it in and painted it," says Cheryl. "I used a sample of siding to color match the blue paint. Ten years later, when we started remodeling, that turned out to be a good decision."<br>

    Date Published: April 13, 2012
    Date Updated: May 1, 2012
  • Baywindow

    A carpenter is building the bay window for the living room. "This was yet another dream come true for me!" says Cheryl. There are built-in bookshelves and a window seat in the bay. The window above the bay was later removed, and the two windows in the peak were replaced with one.

    Date Published: April 13, 2012
    Date Updated: May 1, 2012
  • During

    This picture shows the new window upstairs and the beginnings of the porch. They removed a wall upstairs that was dividing a landing and a small bedroom, giving their second son a much bigger bedroom.

    Date Published: April 13, 2012
    Date Updated: May 1, 2012
  • Bartering for boards

    Cheryl asked the owner of Rhino Decking if he wanted to trade decking materials for the right to hunt deer on the farm for five years. He agreed. "I love a good barter!" she says.

    Date Published: April 13, 2012
    Date Updated: May 1, 2012
  • After

    The beautiful wrap-a-round porch is on three sides of the house. "It was a dream come true for me," says Cheryl. "We have been doing all the work on the house as we can afford too. Two sides, plus the mudroom, now have the blue steel siding matching the paint. One and a half sides to go!:"

    Date Published: April 13, 2012
    Date Updated: May 1, 2012
  • Family Farm

    The house is quiet during the day now that Cheryl and Alan's youngest went off to kindergarten this fall. However, the family farms 650 acres of corn and soybeans, and custom harvests another 1,500 acres, so things are busy. "Our farm is truly a family farm," says Cheryl. "The kids all take part in it. We are also involved in our church and in 4-H."

    Date Published: April 13, 2012
    Date Updated: May 1, 2012
  • Star

    Alan's parents, Daniel and Rhea Eblen, live a few miles away and own horses, ponies, and miniature donkeys. Star is a three year old purebred Halflinger. Her real name is Cally's Sedona Star JAF. The horse behind Star is her mother, Cally (Caledonia Gal JAF). Last summer Star and Cally were trained to drive together as a team. "Star loves attention and really knows how to work the camera," says Cheryl, who took this photo. "She always comes to the fence to be petted."

    Date Published: April 13, 2012
    Date Updated: May 1, 2012
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