Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year!!!!

Time has quickly passed by from Fall into winter.  Although we have had little snow, the trees are bare and the cold, cold chill is here.  The joys of winter in Maine, and the joys of winter time heating.  We have done some updating to the heating system and are learning to adjust all the sorts of things one must do in a new house during the first winter in it.  For such a big old beauty, there are many surprising things that we have not had any real issues with.  The windows are strong and much tighter than we thought they would be.  The drafts are not as bad as we were preparing for, and without blocking any rooms off things have been pretty comfortable.  There have been some extremely cold days where it seems the new wood furnace needs a little help from the woodstove in the library and the cookstove in the kitchen, but who doesn't love turning on the Christmas lights in December and curling up to a woodstove!  There will be some things we will do this summer to button up the house more for next year, but that is to be expected!
The Christmas season is upon us and we have decked the halls and couldn't be happier with our beautiful old home for the holidays. I posted a few pictures and hope that you all will enjoy. We wish for Peace on Earth, Good will to all!!!!! Merry Christmas!!!!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

A few pictures of the Clough Family

We have been lucky enough to be in touch with a local historian in Monmouth named Bobbie.  She has been wonderful enough to share a few pictures of the Clough family at the house which was taken around 1910.  The house is in the background and there are a few barns as well that no longer exist today.  The other picture is of Benjamin Clough, the Grandson of who is believed to have built the house who is also of the same name, Benjamin Clough.  What an amazing thing to be able to see the faces of the original family who built and called this house their home. Thanks to Bobbie for her generous help!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

A few more pictures from the outside

Here are a few more pictures from when we worked on the outside of the house.  We have started to button things up for the winter.  We were able to clear all the over grown brush from the beautiful rock wall in front of the house and rebuild the parts of the rock wall that had fallen.  Pictures of that to follow soon.  This winter the focus will be on the upstairs bedrooms that belong to our 3 daughters.  We have done work on the library, which was one of the rooms that needed the least work so far.  It is such a great room too!  Pictures of that and the diningroom to follow.  We also will be using the winter to research more about the history of the home and on the Clough family. Until then, enjoy!

Exterior Work

Days are getting shorter and the nights are cooler.  We have done quite a bit with the house to get it ready for winter.  I will post a few pics of what the house looked like before on the outside and the changes we have made so far.  We also put in a wood furnace add on.  We had used pellet stoves in the past in our other home, however to keep the house historically correct we did not want to put pellet stoves in.  We want the fireplaces to remain as they are.  We are lucky that upon inspection our chimney professional confirmed that the chimneys were all lined and the fireplaces could actually all be used.  AMAZING!  He was even surprised to see it.  So, needless to say that was one part of the restoration that we were excited to learn we didn't have to do! 
Today Scott finished building the large, wooden storm door.  It looks great!  We have temp hinges on for now until we get the ones in that we ordered that are all the same size, but it still looks excellent.  Where there once was an old, rusty, metal screen door has now been replaced with a more proper door for the house! 
The large trees seen in the before picture were one of the first things to go.  My father took them down for us all in a day.  The stumps still remain until spring when the stump grinder comes and then the gardens will be worked on.  We also removed a very large handicapped ramp and deck that lead to the front door.  Underneath we were excited to find the big old granite steps.  The top step seen was a piece of granite found at the edge of the upper drive way under the start of the ramp.  We were hopeful that it would work as a top step when we moved it, however we now think that we will have to remove t and replace it with a smaller sized piece of granite in the spring.  For now it will do and serves the purpose.  Like so many things we will have to try different ideas to get it right for the house.  It may be a lot of work to do it that way, but in the end it will be done whatever way is best for the house.
We have a big goal of painting the exterior of the house next spring and working on restoring the windows, even if it is one at a time.  Many people have wrinkled their nose and commented on the task and expense of having to replace all the windows, but we have no plans to replace them, we want to restore and preserve them....that answer gets us even more wrinkled noses as the thought of restoring that many windows..... apparently it makes some people dizzy :-)

Friday, October 14, 2011

The start of a new life-The Clough House

In August of 2011 my husband and I bought our dream house.  The clough house was built sometime around 1803. (Further research is hinting that it may have been built even earlier). The house is located in Monmouth, Maine.  We had looked for a home for a while, knowing that our first house which was an old, 3 bedroom cape was not going to be large enough for us and our 3 girls for much longer.   We looked at many houses, but it was slow going.  We were looking for something specific, something special.  It had to be old, nothing built after 1830-1840 would do.  It had to have fireplaces, plaster walls, original character and history.  My husband and I are history buffs.  We also love the ocean and everything nautical.  We tend to drag our three young daughters to museums and anything else history related.  We have a huge passion for old houses and enjoy everything about them.  Our first home was a cape built in 1920, we always joked that it wasn't old enough, but it was a great first house.  We knew we would be outgrowing that cape and started our hunt in February 2010 for our next move.  Thankfully we have a fantastic realtor ( If your looking for a home in Maine let me know, I will give you her info!).  She was very patient with us, knowing that we were looking for something very specific and that certain things on our list of wants were not going to budge.  On a whim one winter day, we went with our realtor and looked at the Clough house.  This is where our story begins....