On any home, the porch is one of the hardest hit places by weather. Our 123 year old farmhouse is no different. So while the girls and I were attending an out-of-town baby shower, Michael decided he would start tackling some of its much needed repairs.
In many of our previous posts we have discussed the sad truth about what poorly installed vinyl products have done to this once beautiful 1893 folk Victorian farmhouse. So, I won’t get into all those frustrating details today. I will attempt to calmly share the first stage of our porch restoration journey. As you can see from the before shots, we uncovered the original cedar lap siding with its coveted 4 inch reveal and remarkable detail, when we removed the cheap vinyl siding.
It was pretty beat up from years of neglect, followed by the cutting of holes for blown-in insulation, and the effects that years of moisture trapped by the vinyl caused (not to mention all the cracks and holes created by large nails used to hang the vinyl). I was not home to take shots of Michael as he restored the siding, but this corner best shows the jaw dropping contrast between the before and after. He did a wonderfully seamless job!
We have been informed that our budget does not afford us the ability to have both a contractor’s help and the true restoration this historic treasure deserves. So we are going to attempt to slowly but accurately restore our exterior ourselves. The monotonous process of carefully prying up each of the pieces from this small section that were too far gone and replacing them with new cedar planks, took 3 full days to complete. Yet the results are magical!
As I pulled up to the farmhouse and the product of Michael’s hard work came into view, that feeling of “going back in time” came over me. A time when quality and craftsmanship was a priority. A time when builders took pride in their profession and were accustomed to getting something done the right way, instead of the fastest or cheapest way. This was what the farmhouse was supposed to look like!
Even though our shabby little farmhouse is far from finished this small patch of restored siding on our front porch gives us hope. We hope that we can restore Bryarton Farm back to its original glory. Back to the way it looked when the White family first built the farmhouse in 1893. We want our girls and our generations to follow, to always come home to a place where not only was their heritage sown, but also to the place where the heritage of american pioneers is not forgotten.
Someday our little historic farm will once again be a beautiful place for family and friends to gather and share in life’s amazing legacy together…
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