If you’ve ever tuned into the HGTV channel, you know that their priority is reality television. At HGTV, there is no show bigger than Fixer Upper. Led by hosts Joanna and Chip Gaines, Fixer Upper is all about following one family as they revitalize homes with glamorous and trendy makeovers. Of course, the show is really about how the husband-wife duo works together, and they’ve cultivated quite the following as a result. Now, in the ultimate Fixer Upper twist, we are going to head into the home that Chip and Joanna fixed for themselves!
Meet Joanna and Chip
If you don’t know Chip or Joanna, you’ve come to the right place! The television co-hosts first met each other back in Waco, TX, in 2001. They were both attending the same high-school when they became aware of one another. Chip saw Joanna in a fancy portrait while visiting Joanna’s family business. Two years later, Chip and Joanna would tie the knot. Talk about a romantic story!
Property Loving Family
Being in the fixin’ business, it only makes sense that the Gaines would live in many different homes throughout their life. After Joanna and Chip got married, they would end up living in nine different houses. While they no doubt loved exploring all of these properties, the Gaines always promised to settle down one day. It was this mindset that got them to begin working on their own fixer-upper!
Renovating Their Dream Home
Suffice to say, Joanna and Chip are definitely no strangers to renovating homes. So, when they set their eyes on this decrepit looking farmhouse, they saw the end-product rather than what currently stood before them. It’s the ability to see the potential in a piece of property that has made the stars of Fixer Upper so popular among their fans.
Wide Angle of the Property
Here’s another look at the property before the Gaines family began to work on it. As you can see, there was quite a bit of work to do. Without their television production team behind them, Chip and Joanna would be on their own. Can you imagine what they turned this lunk of wood into? By the end of today’s conversation, you’ll have your mind blown by their fixer-upper skills!
Successful Television Career
Before we dive wholesale into the renovation, let’s take a moment to look back at the careers of Chip and Joanna. Fixer Upper officially premiered in 2013. Since then, the series has gone on for five seasons and 56 episodes. More than just a family entertainment show, Fixer Upper has also scored two Primetime Emmy Award nominations for their work. The show officially went off of the air in 2018, but we’ll explore that topic more at a later time.
Meet The Farmhouse
While it may seem sudden, their renovation took nearly 18 months to complete. Here we can see that the Gaines did as much work on the outside of the home as they did on the inside of the property. When they first purchased the farmhouse in 2012, right before they made it big on HGTV, the place barely looked livable. Now, the farmhouse looks like a miniature mansion!
A Long Journey
While Chip and Joanna can renovate a guest’s property in the space of a single episode, doing the job in real life is a whole heck of a lot tougher. It took a full 18 months in order to turn this property into somewhere that they would want to raise their family. Of course, Chip and Joanna were totally fine taking their time. As you’ll see, the land that the property sits on is just as beautiful.
Finally Moving In
While you might expect Joanna and Chip to go crazy renovating their own house, they were actually relatively constrained. By the end of their renovation, the reality television stars had only added a single extension to the home, and that for the master bedroom. It turns out that the famous couple wanted to retain as much old school charm as possible. Who can blame them?
Perfecting the Color
In order to really perfect the look of the home, Joanna wanted something that was soft and elegant. Joanna decided that they needed to lean into white as one of their core color elements. As you’ll soon see, the gentle white color has helped to totally transform the interior of the house. While a slightly controversial decision, Joanna definitely made the most out of her choice.
Rejuvenating the Kitchen
The kitchen is the beating heart of most homes, so it stands to reason that Chip and Joanna would want a nice kitchen of their own. With a gaggle of children to take care of, Joanna and Chip wanted something functional and aesthetically pleasing. This kitchen incorporates a stainless steel island, a hanging wooden rafter, and stark modern lines. Can you imagine having breakfast here?
A Cozy Entrance
When you walk into the home, you instantly feel at ease. With a ‘G’ adorning the wall, it is hard to forget who owns this house! Again, the Gaines paid a lot of attention to functionality while designing their dream home. You can see the hooks and cubbies for stashing supplies when coming inside. You got to do what you can in order to motivate your children to be clean!
Attending to Little Details
What sets Joanna and Chip apart as designers is their ability to notice the little things. It makes total sense that they would remember to add beautiful little touches to their own home. Here you can see a few of the little design and decor decisions that Chip and Joanna made before finishing their renovation.
Gorgeous Living Room
This is the perfect living room for any family that is always on the go. There’s enough comfortable seating for the family to relax, but nothing feels overwhelming. This living room is beautifully designed, and we love the mixed textures that they chose to pursue. The white board set against the faux wooden windows is just a great look.
Sense of Refined Charm
From a decrepit old building to a refined and upscale farmhouse, Chip and Joanna did one heck of a job. We love the rustic-industrial look that the Gaines family managed to pull off for this renovation. You can see that they care deeply about blending both function and fashion into a cohesive space. With a large dining room table and plenty of space for relaxing, this is a great family area!
Now, this looks like the perfect bedroom to pass out in. We love the windows that straddle the bed as well as all of the delicate decors that they incorporated. The white walls mixed with the natural earthen tones combine to make this a bedroom to dream of. What makes this bedroom even cooler is how much it sprawls, but we’ll get to that in a little bit.
Before we move on, let’s take a moment to peek into the master bathroom. This is the extension that we had mentioned earlier. This free-standing en-suite has its own bathtub as well as white tiling. We love how the old door makes the room more inviting than ever. We almost feel like this is a room pulled straight from The Hobbit.
Turn just to the left of the bed and you’ll find yourself staring at what makes this bedroom truly special. A beautiful fireplace is adorned by two chairs and an antique desk. The windows add a ton of light and the white lace curtains create a sense of vulnerable elegance. With a house full of kids, it can be nice to have an adults’ only escape.
Now that we’ve seen where Chip and Joanna sleep, it’s only fair to check out the boys’ room. You can tell right away that the family wanted a clean and open space for their boys to roughhouse. Two bunk beds set the tone and the steel ladders and rails make them pop off of the walls. We continue to love how the wooden floor and white wooden walls blend together.
In the Girls Room
In the girls’ room, things look just a little bit different. For one, this is probably the softest and most delicate looking bedroom to ever exist. This is where Emmie Kay and Ella Rose sleep. They have their own chandelier as well as, probably, the coolest looking dollhouse in the world. While this is smaller than the boys’ room, it certainly feels complete and cozy.
Master Bathroom Interior
Let’s swing back to the master bathroom for a close-up view of the interior. Once you step through the delightfully Hobbit-esque door, you’ll find yourself in a bathroom that blends class with antique appeal. We absolutely adore the hanging chandelier as well as the free-standing tub. The his-and-her sinks are also a phenomenal choice. What do you think of the way that the tiling blends with the wooden ceiling?
Boys Bedroom Layout
Here’s a wider view of the boy’s bedroom. Your eyes will immediately be drawn to the giant map hanging above the bar. On the far wall, you’ll find an exercise ladder and a pair of pinboards that are perfect for adding family photos. While the Gaines are focused on fancy renovations, they make sure to never leave out what is truly important to them, family.
Remember the Family
Speaking of the family, you can’t walk up or down a flight of steps in this house without being reminded of who lives there. The stairwell has been adorned with family photos set inside of dark black frames. The black frames really help to pop off of the wall. We also love the little light bulb sconces that seem to be all over the house.
Adult Business Room
Considering the fact that Joanna and Chip are two television stars with plenty of work to do, it makes sense that they’d have a meeting room. This giant space has been designed for a number of different tasks. The primary table is great for business meetings while the cabinets and side tables are perfect for storing and working on crafts.
Adorable Coffee Bar
Many people don’t understand what makes an interior designer good at what they do. Here, we can see a clear example as to why Chip and Joanna are the best in the business. This nifty little coffee bar is functional, adorable, and completely effective at filling in this awkward room. Knowing how to work with space is so important when you are a designer.
Kids Crafting Room
When the kids want to flex their creative skills, they are sent to the crafting room. With a gorgeous window, a hanging chandelier, and two mounted baskets, we couldn’t find a more inviting room to relax in. What do you think of the stools that are attached to the table? We thought that was a rather inspired decision!
When you have a house filled with children, you have to make a space outside for them to enjoy. We can see the sprawling yard that encapsulates their property, just beyond the fence line. We can also see what appears to be a brick oven stove, a barbecue, and the cutest outdoor picnic table of all time. Could you waste an afternoon in this yard?
View of the Land
Here is another angle of the land encircling the farmhouse. Apparently, their farmhouse came with 40 acres of land that is filled with trees, shrubs, and other plants. While renovating 40 acres of land is tough, Chip and Joanna got right to work on a few of their favorite little passion projects. Let’s take a trip around the property in order to see what our favorite Fixer Uppers stars have been up to.
The PERFECT Greenhouse
Let’s take our first stop at the Greenhouse. Joanna is a pretty big gardening fan, and this greenhouse means that she can tend to her plants no matter the time of the year. This greenhouse is more than just functional, it is absolutely breathtaking. Seriously, look at the refined angles of the building itself. This isn’t a prefabricated greenhouse!
Laid Back Afternoon
A home isn’t really a home when you can’t relax in it. Fortunately, the Gaines family doesn’t have any trouble sitting back and letting peace overwhelm them. The deck is just as pretty as the rest of the house, but with a better view for the family dog. Here we see Joanna and Crew taking a moment to admire the life that they have built.
The Home Office
In some ways, this home office is a little bit upsetting. With that being said, the reason that Chip and Joanna don’t need a home office is simple, they are always on the go and working! On the rare occasion that they get to relax at home, this desk looks perfect for grinding out a few emails while taking in the nearby view.
The Family Room
The family room is probably the most important part of the house. When you have as many kids as Chip and Joanna, you want to have a place where everyone can gather. What picture would be more symbolic of a family gathering than this one? Here, we see everyone doing their own thing while the beauty of the house looms over all.
Enjoying the Fireplace
You aren’t often going to be starting up your fireplace in Texas, but on the rare occasion that you want to, it’s nice to have the option! This fireplace is situated right in the heart of the family room. This would be a great view to take in on a cold, wintry morning. We also have to compliment how much green the Gaines managed to showcase in their home!
Before and After
This incredible before and after picture really shows you how far Chip and Joanna have come. Remember, they purchased this home in 2012, before their show had even gone on the air. For seven years, Chip and Joanna have owned this property. They’ve watched their children grow up while renovating the building. While the actual work only took 18 months, the house has cemented itself as a major part of their life.
Excited for the Future
When Fixer Uppers was pulled off of the air in 2018, fans all over the country reacted with concern. After all, Chip and Joanna didn’t have any new show in development when Fixer Uppers came to a close. Would this be it for our favorite remodeling professionals? Well, if you are reading this paragraph right now, you probably already know that this isn’t where their story ends! Instead, they are moving onto something even bigger and more exciting!
Making Big Moves
According to the Hollywood Reporter, Chip and Joanna have partnered with the Discovery Network in order to take over the DIY Network. Chip, Joanna, and Discovery will work together in order to renovate the DIY Network into the television channel of their dreams. We have a feeling that you’ll be seeing much more of Chip and Joanna in the coming months!
Doctors Debate a New Study That Puts Kids’ Screen TIme in a Positive Light
Is Screen Time A Common Sense Issue, Or Is There More To Learn From A Recent Study?
Children glued to their phones and tablets may give parents a break, but is the overall, long-term effect of “screen time” actually positive? On TV, the show “The Doctors” took on this question in response to a controversial study that seemed to claim that kids benefit from screen time more than they are harmed. Ironically, parents can go online and spend some screen time of their own catching up on this segment of “The Doctors” along with videos from well-known medical sources such as Kaiser Permanente and even the U.S. Government‘s NIH. Why did these doctors get heated about the results of the study?
The Potential Dangers of Children Spending Significant Screen Time
Mental development of children involves diverse sensory inputs, problem-solving, interaction with others and managing of emotions. Screen time may help educate and entertain kids, but overall the brain and personality development of the child could be at risk if they spend too much time face-to-screen.
Is Erosion of Family Life Another Concern?
While studies often focus on screen time as a negative factor in children’s school and developmental progress, the effect on family life as a whole is sometimes omitted. Kids who spend so many hours alone, not interacting with their families when they are at home, would in the past have been cause for concern. They might be depressed, have a developmental issue, or be holding in feelings about some difficult issue in their lives. Screen time is a distraction that could serve to mask these and other concerns. When kids participate in the family, physicians note, they not only grow but they have better access to interactive parenting.
Dr. Judy Ho And Her Analysis Of A Controversial “Study”
On “The Doctors,” the team considered the positive spin on kids and screen time of a new but controversial study. Clinical psychologist Dr. Judy Ho, who had strong opinions on the subject, played the “bad guy” and asked tough questions, offering her own well-developed views. She noted that the study they were discussing was missing several key elements of a well-designed piece of research, and so the conclusions were unlikely to be useful as information for parents. The data simply served as an informal survey of interested parents, and the results were a compilation of general comments about kids’ characteristics. There wasn’t really any direct and scientific way to see cause and effect.
Boiling Down The Issue Of Screen Time For Kids
Parents may use decisions about gadget use as a teachable moment in their children’s lives, but as always peer pressure is going to be a powerful force. Kids who aren’t connected tend to miss out, as previous generations of TV-watching kids did, on social interactions with other kids which revolve around common media experiences.
Teaching Your Children to Grow into Adulthood
Parents have to weigh social “coolness” against developmental, family, and educational concerns. In the end, though it may be difficult for some parents, Dr. Patty’s suggestions are a great starting point: have no-screen zones like the dining room with a basket by the door, have concrete limits for screen time — typically less than two hours a day — and try to make screen time a parent-child experience rather than a media consumption moment. Talk about screen-based experiences, think about them together, laugh at the funny stuff and ask questions about the serious stuff. Use screen time to help your child’s mind grow.
Advice for Teaching Toddlers How to Be Kind to Pets
Raising children can be an enjoyable and rewarding experience; however, it can be hard for children to learn how to interact with animals. When it comes to sharing kindness with pets, this is often a task that toddlers struggle with. This can leave parents wondering what they are going to do. After all, having a pet is a great way to teach a child responsibility in addition to welcoming another member of the family. It is important for parents to teach their children how to be kind to pets. For parents who are having trouble getting their toddlers to empathize with pets, there are a few pieces of advice to keep in mind.
Lead by Example
The first tip to keep in mind is to lead by example. Instead of telling kids how they should interact with animals, take steps to demonstrate this to them by example. Take kids out to petting zoos and show kindness to animals. Feed the animals. Pet the animals. Say kind things. Kids want to do what their parents are doing. If they see their parents being kind to animals, they are going to follow in those important footsteps.
Read About Animals
Toddlers are not intentionally mean to animals; however, they are going to be hesitant to open up to something that is unfamiliar to them. Therefore, when teaching toddlers how to read, take the time to read a few books and stories about animals. There are countless books that are meant for children that discuss animals, the various types, why they are important, and how to interact with them. Pick a few of these books out. The books will teach children about animals and, as toddlers become more familiar with them, they will show them kindness.
Use a Pretend Pet
One of the first steps that parents can take to get their toddlers more comfortable around pets is to come up with a pretend example. These take the form of stuffed animals. Many kids come home from the hospital with stuffed animals and end up being a kid’s first friend. Go through the store and pick out a few pretend pets from the stuffed animal aisle. The kids will open up to them and often give their new pretend friend a name. This will help toddlers learn how to empathize with real-life pets that look like their stuffed animals.
Use Positive Reinforcement
A lot of parents are hesitant to heap praise on their child for doing something they are supposed to do. After all, children are supposed to be kind to animals. Why reward them for doing something that they should already be doing? The answer is because it works. Positive reinforcement works on everyone, including children. Toddlers want to please their parents. If they receive praise for being nice to the family pet, they are going to continue with this behavior in the future. Use positive reinforcement to teach toddlers how to be kind to pets.
Ensure there is a Safe Space in the Home for the Pet
In order for toddlers to be kind to pets, they need to feel comfortable around them. This means that the pet needs to be nice to the toddler as well. Pets are going to be irritated if toddlers are constantly picking on them. Eventually, they are going to fight back. This will make it hard for a toddler to become friendly with the family pet. Prevent this by providing the pet with a safe space to hide when they need a break. This will help both the pet and the toddler.
Pet Adoption Event Leads to Family Reunion
The Jacksonville Humane Society, a non-profit, no-kill animal shelter, is a member of No Kill Jacksonville. The shelter provides adoption and veterinary services to homeless pets in the area in an attempt to reduce suffering and create a community where no adoptable pet is killed simply because there isn’t a space for it.
In 2018 alone, over 500 volunteers sacrificed over 27,000 hours to help meet those goals. A labor of love, the shelter helps keep families together and reunites pets with their families. 397 pets were returned to their owners in 2018, thanks to the hard work of the shelter workers.
Special Adoption Events
Shelters like the Jacksonville Humane Society have special events where the adoption fees are reduced or waived, and where families can come out to see if they are interested in adopting an available pet for their own family. One such event was called Generosity Breeds Joy, a day chosen to celebrate the shelter’s one year anniversary in its new and innovative building.
For the November 9 event, adoption fees were free, and some local restaurants offered to donate a percentage of proceeds to the shelter, as long as the diners asked on the special day. The special event also offered face painting, arts and crafts, and a special presentation for yoga with cats. There was even a special day camp for on November 12 for kids in grades kindergarten to 8th.
On that special day, a family showed up at the PetSmart that was hosting the event in hopes of adopting a kitten. While they were waiting in line, they happened to notice a dog that was being readied for a walk. The brown-and-white dog looked very familiar to the family, who had lost a similar-looking dog in August.
The dad shouted loud enough to be heard throughout the store, “That’s my Dopey!” The dog was so excited he ran over to see his dad, only to find that his whole family was there excited to see him again.
At that time, Dopey had been with the Jacksonville Humane Society for over a month. A kind stranger brought him in on October 1, believing he was a stray who needed to find a home. The shelter took good care of him and then brought him to the Generosity Breeds Joy event to try to find a forever home.
More and More Reunions
Just a few days later, the shelter reunited another family. A kitten was brought in during a big spay and neuter event, and she turned out to have a microchip. She was quickly reunited with her family.
One lucky lady in Florida was reunited with her dog who escaped a fence in 2007. She kept searching, looking in shelters and searching the streets when she was out. After 12 years, her Duchess was found living under a man’s home in Pennsylvania, and she got to go home.
How You Can Help
You never know who you might be helping when you give to a shelter. You may find a new family member or help a pet that belongs to a friend. While many people are already overextended, there are a lot of ways you can help your local shelter.
If you have food your pet doesn’t like, you can donate it instead of throwing it away. Let others in your community know so the shelter can receive assistance, and even if you can’t volunteer, suggest it to teenage friends as a great way to get some work experience. It takes the whole community to make miracles like this happen.
Stella the Dog Can Talk!
Christina Hunger is a speech pathologist who works with young children around two years old to enhance their ability to communicate with adults. Christina has always wondered if she could teach a puppy to use the word buttons, too. Several years ago, Christina adopted a dog named Stella. She decided to try and see if the same methods she uses for her therapy would also help her puppy to learn to communicate. Many dog owners would like to really understand what their pets are thinking about. Stella uses buttons to communicate her wishes to her owners. Christina can talk with her dog.
Christina set up a group of buttons for Stella to push with her paws. Each button was introduced singularly, and over time Stella learned the meaning of a variety of buttons. The buttons were also grouped by color. Each color represents a particular group of words. Stella can press “walk” or “beach” with her paws to indicate what she wants to do. She can also press buttons for Christina or Jake, her other owner. Stella will walk on the board of 26 buttons as she looks for the one she wants. Stella took the longest to learn her first button. After that, it was much easier to introduce more buttons to the dog.
When Stella began to learn to use the buttons, she would only use one paw. Over time, Stella began using both paws to press the buttons. Using both paws makes it easier for Stella to put more than one button together. At this point, she can put a series of five or less words together such as “Christina walk” or “Want Jake Come.” Christina feels that the dog showed relief when she finally learned how to punch the buttons for her needs. Stella barks when she hits the buttons, and is able to repeat requests if Christina does not understand her or does not see the dog punch all of her buttons.
Christina has started a blog entitled Hunger for Words where visitors can see the progress of Stella and her buttons. The blog has a number of cool videos of Stella’s day. Christina is hoping to teach this method to other dogs and hopes that this method will improve the communication between owners and pets. She also feels that having the board made a recent move easier for Stella to understand. Moves often make pets anxious, but Stella was very calm about their recent move to the beach. Stella intends to introduce more words for Stella to learn.
Stella has been featured in People magazine, which is following the story of Stella from time to time for its readers. For more on Stella, go here to reach Christina’s blog. Christina is currently looking for another dog that can learn to push buttons. She is hoping to organize a class of animals and show their owners how to make both of their lives easier.
Gallant Helps Pet Owners Plan Ahead By Banking Dogs’ Stem Cells When They Get Spayed Or Neutered
If you’re wondering what you can do to make your pet’s life as long and healthy as possible, it’s a good idea to consider banking your dog’s stem cells. Gallant is a new startup devoted to pet health that can help you do just that.
Human health care has benefited enormously from stem cell technology in the recent past. Now with the help of Gallant, pet health can benefit too. Gallant’s mission is to make it so that dogs can benefit from regenerative therapies. The company now has collected $11 million in funding and is based in Los Angeles.
The founders of Gallant have made note of the fact that we plan ahead for our children, but we rarely plan ahead for the lives of our pets. However, harvesting stem cells when dogs are young and healthy creates a huge asset to pet health care in the future.
The stem cell banking service offered by Gallant has just recently launched. Yet it is already stirring up a lot of attention in pet care. The company has grown to acquire part of the previously existing company Cook Regentec. This acquisition has included possession of stem cell banking services that were already being offered by Cook Regentec. It has also included acquisition of various cell therapy products that involved harvesting reproductive tissues.
The strength of the operations of this company lie in the fact that it involves harvesting stem cells when neutering and spaying is being performed. This maximizes the efficiency of the harvesting and also makes it so that stem cells are harvested when the animal is young. At this time, the stem cells are healthiest and best for regenerative cell therapies.
The founder of the startup enterprise is Aaron Hirschhorn. Hirschhorn initially founded DogVacay. He founded this company after suffering from back pain himself. After suffering from back pain, Hirschhorn also saw his dog suffer through arthritis pain. While Hirschhorn noted that he was able to benefit from regenerative therapies, no such therapies were available for his dog.
Another leading figure at the company is Linda Black. Linda Black is an entrepreneur with experience with other ventures in the past involving the life sciences. Other companies Black has worked for have included SciStem and Medicus Biosciences. These two ventures were also focused on regenerative therapies.
Thanks to the $11 million in initial funding available to Gallant, the company made the purchase of the Cook-Regentec division. Now Gallant is able to offer pet owners the option to have stem cells collected any time they take a pet to have a spay or neuter surgery performed.
In the future, regenerative therapies will be more widely available for pet owners, but it’s important to have the young stem cells available to provide these therapies. With the services of Gallant, it’s easy to ensure that effective treatments will be available for your dog for chronic conditions like arthritis down the road.
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