We purchased the property in March of 2016. The house is known through the village as the ‘Pink House’ and was built sometime around 1915 as a family’s summer cottage. It has not been inhabited for many years. The carriage shed was built in 2004 by the previous owner. She designed it to be used as separate studios to tenants. She used salvaged windows and other materials to give it an old rustic charm. The rustic, eclectic look of the building is what drew us to the property. Having a front yard and a cozy backyard garden is an advantage too. We don’t live in the house, but are fixing it up to use it for other things.
We installed a new fence that doubles as hitching post. There are horse riders that come through the area a couple of times a year. Now they have a place in the village to hitch their horse while they shop or grab a bite to eat. There is no charge to hitch, although donations are appreciated to help with maintenance and clean up.
Dan and his father started fixing up the front porch, opening it up and using rough sawn lumber to create a rustic railings. We plan to host “Stories on the Front Porch” in which we’ll invite a seasoned member of the community to come and share stories about the good ol’ days. This is a time to slow down and connect with people from different generations. The porch occasionally provides a space for Dan’s mother, Carolyn to sell her crafty goods and sweet hot mustard. It’s also a great spot to eat your lunch, feeling a light breeze and watching the world go by.
Our Front yard is host to a 2nd Friday Market by the Lake Pepin Local Food Group. These markets coincide with the monthly Stockholm Strolls, when many of the village merchants keep their shops open late. These are fun times in the village when you can get fresh veggies, cut flowers, homemade jams, salsa, soaps, hand spun/hand dyed wool and gourmet tea from the market in our front yard. We usually have s’mores to go with our camp fire and Dan may have his torch going. The other merchants often have art openings, featured artists, demonstrations and snacks.
We share a property line with Lena’s Lucky Star who we love having as our neighbors. We chose to install this archway to create an opening in the railing. This way it keeps it casual and friendly for people to pass and back and forth between our two properties. The village doctor has named this the “Kissing Arch”, saying that every one who passes under it needs to smooch someone. We’ll go with it! Lena’s is creating a backyard garden in which their path leads to our path. Our two yards combined have become a sort of commune.