Sunday, February 07, 2016

Jacinda, This is For You (And Anyone Else Who's Reading Along)

I don't think you ever saw "before", so we'll start there. You know we took a long weekend to NC, and accidentally bought a house. It needed love - still does need more love, but it's coming along. If it hadn't been for Rebekah it would be some slow going. Thanks to her help the biggest things that needed doing right away (carpet, paint) are done. The bigger things, like a new kitchen and removing a wall, adding lighting, changing up the footprint a bit - those things will wait for a year. For now I want it to be as pretty as it can be, and then I can take my time and live in it and decide how I want it to be in the end.
Without further ado, I present the "before":
 This is the "big bathroom". I initially wanted to paint out the cabinets, but you'll see later that a little hardware and a new color really made a huge difference. It's kind of a bummer that you can't see the whole wall - the light bar was a 1980's classic brass with 5 round lights. I fixed that just about first thing. It's a totally changed space now.

Den/living room. The fireplace is to the left, just out of frame. The hallway ahead leads into the bedrooms. It's really nice to be able to close off the sleeping area from the living area. 
Dining room empty, after they'd moved out. There's a picture below of it with furniture in it. I am too tired to reorder these pictures! 
Den that I am making a living room. Behind the shooter is the kitchen. If you could pan left, you'd see a door to the deck. Nice little deck. I got it a pressure washer the other day, so when it's a bit warmer I can wash it up and coat it with something durable. It overlooks a wooded brook-ish space. The bugs and birds and such make a racket - it's SO peaceful and sweet!   
 1963 called...they want their kitchen back. And I can't wait to send it along. Look familiar? Shades of Last Owned House, but with less Eau de Schnauzer. Built in cabinets, all too tall for me. Can't wait to get rid of this and start over. For now it just got a facelift.
 This was a formal living room - now it's just a big empty. It's going to be a dining room and an entry space in the future. Right now it's just empty/full of boxes.
Into the dining room from the kitchen...the table is back north, so for now this room is really a holding area for painted cabinet doors and craft room stuff.
Front entry - the closet to the left is on the deletion list. It will come out with the wall it's attached to - there's an "after" picture below that shows the wall from the living room side.
 The Master bedroom...very Carolina Blue, and looking tiny. 
This is the house itself. Mr. Wonderful always wanted a full brick house - now he's got one! The shutters need some work, and I want to pop color on the front door. I haven't decided what just yet. I am going to replace the solid door with one with some glass. First, it will bring more light into the entry/dining room area, and second I'll be able to see who's here. It also needs new light fixtures. The ones there are quite old and small. I want something with more presence, and more wattage.
So now I assume you're slightly curious about the "after". Really it is the "in progress", because there is still much, much to do. For now, it's livable and much cuter. Ready?
 This is the dining room, where nothing has changed except that the carpet is GONE and my plants are wallowing in southern exposure. It's become a staging area for boxes and such, sort of a catch all area. I am very glad we didn't wait and move everything at once. 
Living room with a facelift. When we pull out the kitchen and a wall and rejig the entry, the paneling will come down in here. For now, it has been transformed with color. Totally changes the feeling of the space. I have taken two shelves out of the built-in, and my plan is to finish it as an entertainment center. It's in process. I need an electrician for a couple of things, one of them is running an outlet into the built in so there's no visible cords on the outside.
Kitchen, phase one...the doors will go up this week. We wanted them up before Rebekah left so she could see it, but time just ran out. I am resting today (and blogging!) so it's on the menu for tomorrow. NONE of the old hinge holes are usable because I am swapping out the hardware. So I am in for a fun, fun time. Luckily, the door and drawer pulls go on easy.
 This is just my orchids. I got them at Ikea for cheap. They make me happy. And my crock pot, currently full of curry, because I can - Gene hates the stuff!
Another view of the fireplace - I love it so much. I had thought to cover it, paint it, re-tile it; something. But now that the wall color has changed, it pops and I won't change a thing except to add a gas or electric insert at some point. We won't burn here. Snakes love woodpiles, and snake here doesn't always mean cute little garter or corn snake. 
 Closer shot of the built-in in progress. Gene may have to get a bigger tv now to fill the space. I am sure he will be heart broken...
 Guest room - this was white and now is peachy. These floors are almost everywhere n the house, under all the carpet. Most are in AMAZING shape. I have some scrubbing of old paint in spots, but they mopped up beautifully on the first pass.
Office/Craft/Stamp room - this is the worst floor, and I am just going to leave it. Between our work chairs rolling all over, dogs scratching, my own potential paint and glue spills, it doesn't make sense to put money into this floor. I wanted to spatter paint it with all the colors from the rest of the house, and then poly it...but Rebekah convinced me not to. Kind of wish I had just done it, really!  
Master bedroom - still blue, but more like heron or hazy beach day. The linens and furniture will change this - for now it's just all gray velvet drapes and camel colored old bedding. The duvet is coming! The duvet is coming! And I can't wait to hang our art here. 
Big bathroom - total transformation with such simple steps! We painted it green, changed out the hardware, and changed the lighting fixture. I no longer feel the need to paint the vanity. This bathroom can sit as it is for a few years now. Initially it made me twitchy. Now I love it. 
See, just pretty. I LOVE the mirror, love the new lighting, and love that the hardware saved me from a long painting job. I took out almost all of the brass hardware, towel bar stuff. The toilet paper holder appears to have been attached with super glue, so it's staying. Luckily I can't really see it most of the time.
 Boys! And living room toward kitchen. To the left is the wall destined for deletion. The wall ahead is what the cabinets will look like when I get the doors on! 
Another look at the fireplace. I should have shut the shades. I have curtains and hardware, but I am not sure I want to hang them because I love the light. There's so little space on either side of the windows that I am afraid curtains will choke out the sun. 
This wall straight ahead, and the closet visible just beyond it are totally going. We will carry the hardwood from the dining/entry through the whole rest of the living space, create an entry space, and reno the kitchen. Just not this minute! If you look closely at this picture, you may notice
This is Violet (formerly Priscilla...I changed that). I went to PetSmrt one day and accidentally came home with a cat. Rebekah loves her. Yoshi loves her. Bradley is just scared of her, and won't make eye contact with her. He stands with his head down and shivers a little if she gets close. 

So, in a biggish nutshell, that's where we are at. Now for a little "memorable days" action, because you don't do the Facebook... 
This was the day we discovered what was under the (old and really gross) carpet. It was a very, very good day. And for the most part, they all look this good! 
This was the day I accidentally got a cat. Or actually a couple of days after. We let her adjust to the chaos by sticking her in the big bathroom for a few days before she met the boys.  
This was the day we bought an awful lot of paint at Lowe's. That was a day where I questioned my sanity. That's a lot of paint. 
 The day of these guys!! So, we were supposed to leave on a Friday, but then there was snow coming in, so we wanted to leave Wednesday. Problem was I'd gotten food poisoning on Sunday night and was still on rice and broth. Walt, Cindy, Rachel, Nathan and Rebekah came out on Wednesday morning and stuffed the truck. That meant Gene could work as much as possible to make up for the two days early departure. We left MA around 3pm Wednesday and drove till about 10, staying the night in PA, then drove to NC Thursday. We got here after dark. Our across the street neighbor was in our driveway before the truck was parked. I love him. He gave us directions to a Food Lion so Rebekah and I could shop before the storm. Once it started, everything stopped. Nothing was open, the roads were covered in ice and sleet. No plows, no sand, no salt after the initial "brine" that washed away in the first hour of the storm. It was an adventure, to be sure! 
The day I bought myself a lamp! I LOVE this. It's all mirrors and shells. Love love. 
The day I discovered that I probably should have stocked up on maple syrup before I left Dodge City. 
The day the luck ran out in hardwood land. The kitchen and living room side are a mix of 90's-ish vinyl and this...stuff. :P It's in great shape. And I am gonna rip it right out and make it hardwood one of these days! 
The day Violet got to see the rest of the house. She spent a couple of days in the bathroom, then a few more in the bedroom/hall area, and then was let loose. Curiosity, thy name is Violet. 
The day I realized we were commingling roller cages, lunch dishes, and putty knives, and I didn't even care one little bit. We JUST got here. And we've ripped 800 pounds of carpet and pad from 6 rooms, and prepped and painted six rooms. At this point, not much bothers me.
 The day these guys reminded me that they used to go for a walk EVERY DAY for THREE MILES, and hadn't done that more than twice since we got here. I took them today. They were most pleased.
The day that Yoshi admitted that he loves his kitty. We've referred to her as "your kitty" since she got here, and I am convinced that he believes she's really his. Brad remains terrified. 

That's the update in a really big nutshell. It's been amazing and fast and hard work. Rebekah is gone, and I've slowed down a bit. Still getting a lot done, just at a more controlled pace because now I have the time. The big stuff is done - big furniture bought and assembled, big carpet and paint jobs done. Now it's stuff I can do alone - put the cabinet doors back on, I did pop in a bit of trim on one wall where the carpet removal revealed a big gap between the floor and the wall, I still have the office/craft room to finish up with shelves and the addition of my stuff, and curtains to hang. Then I can move on to repainting shutters and cleaning up the yard. I'm hoping to get chicks, but they need a shed, and am hoping to build a pedestal for the washer and dryer we just bought. And a garden - we need to decide where it is going to go, and break some ground SOON, before it's tomato time! Comes early here.

More as we go along, but for now, this is where I am at - and I am thrilled to be here! 

1 comment:

ccr in MA said...

The whole thing is fascinating, but I keep going back to "accidentally" bought a house, and "accidentally" brought home a cat!