Sunday, April 8, 2012

Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring!

It has been a long winter, as it usually is in New England.  We enjoyed our first Christmas in the house along with a few Birthday gatherings and other celebrations.  Restorations  slowed due to the cold temperatures and busy holiday season, but now that is all behind us and spring has sprung!  This year our first focus in on a better, more efficient heating system.  I admit it isn't my favorite step, but a necessary one.  I can't really even consider it to be a part of "restoration", but in the long run it will be something that the house will benefit from and so will we.  The first winter in a new house is always interesting and heating a house this large we knew would be a challange.  It wasn't terrible, but the systems are dated and need to be replaced so that will be the first step this spring.
We also have started to lay out plans for the second bathroom (see pics below) that will be going in upstairs.  This will be a long project.  We will be working very hard to make the modern need for a bathroom fit into a house built over 208 years ago.  We will take our time and do it right.  The plaster will be restored and each step of the process will be done in a way that we in the end have a bathroom that fits the integrity of the house.
The best thing about spring so far has been the gardens!  We have been lucky enough to not only purchase a fantastic historic home, but the gardens on the property are amazing as well.  It is a bit overwhelming the amount of work that needs to be done however.  Years of being uncared for have left things over grown and in some cases a tangled mess.  We will be doing a lot of work ourselves, but we also feel it is important to have a professional landscaper get involved as well to help educate us on the best way to care for some of the gardens.  We are looking forward to seeing everything in full bloom soon!
The old shed on the property has come down and we are slowly working through the piles of wood deciding on what we will keep and what will go to the burn pile.  Many of the boards are old and appear to be possibly from the old barn on the property.  Not all of the boards are in good shape though so they must be rid of.  A few trinket here and there we found in the shed and unearthed along the way.  Old license plates, insulators, bowls and buckets.  All things that were once used for what seemed to be gardening purposes and decoration for the shed.

We took some time to visit the Clough plot in town and to take some pictures of the names on the stone to document the Clough family.  At Christmas we set a wreath at the stone to honor the family who built our home. 
We look forward to this new year and what we will accomplish with the house.  For us this is really the start of things.  We have settled in nicely and have already begun to bring the house back to life, and we are excited to see what new things we can discover along the way.


  1. Thanks for sharing your adventure with our old home! We couldn't be happier that you are now custodians of this wonderful piece of our family's history!

    Ernie Johnson

    1. Hello Ernie,
      We are enjoying the house as well as the history that goes along with it!
      Best wishes,

  2. Hello Nicole,
    My name is John W. Clough. The Benjamin in your photo is my great grandfather. He had 10 brothers and sisters. Benjamin "ran away" to sea at age 16 and eventually settled on Martha's Vineyard.He became a famous whaler captain. His exploits are documented in many places in the literature. I'll contact you with more about this later. In the history of Monmouth found on line, you can find a detailed account of the tragic drowning of three of his brothers and a friend in the lake near your house.
    These Cloughs are all descendants of John Clough of Salisbury, MA. I am an officer of the John Clough Genealogical Society Inc.

    I will have lots to discuss with you. My brother has been to the house. I have not.
    Best regards,
    John W. Clough

    1. Hello John,
      How wonderful to hear from you! We purchased the home last August and are just in love with it. We are also very interested in the homes history and have been doing some research with the help of Monmouth historian, Bobbie Bowler. She has been wonderful in finding information on the Clough family (Your family!). We feel very passionate about knowing the history of the home we now own which we are also carefully restoring. I look forward to hearing from you and learning more about the Clough family!
      I can also be reached directly at the following email address:
      Nicole Webb

  3. i am also repairing my home..this blog of your's is pretty great, you share some ideas to all of us..great blog

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