The Adored House

So, I thought I would give you a little background on our current house, because it truly has inspired the nature of my projects. The Adored House is new - only 6 (or maybe 7) years old, and I never imagined living in (and loving) a new house without any character - I always pictured myself living in a charming old fixer upper. Rather than sinking all of our money into new appliances, septic tanks, and plumbing - all of the "not-fun" things we would have to spend our money, we get to invest on moldings and trim, wallpaper, tile, and the rest of the fun stuff! Like I said, it's definitely not the route I anticipated going in home-ownership, but in hindsight I am so glad we took this direction.

Here are some photos of the house before we moved in. I am so thankful that the previous owners left the house as a pretty blank slate for us. I love looking back at these pictures from time to time to remind myself of the transformation. No insult intended to the previous owners - it's just nice to see how one style of house can transition into someone else's style with a little elbow grease. 

Here is the story of how the Adored House became our house...

In April of 2016, we put our first house on the market and it sold in 8 days. I was pregnant with our second child, so we were desperate for more space for our growing family - fast. We looked at a lot of houses - some super practical (ugly) homes, some really rough money pits. After a few months of searching, we found the Adored House - a newish, builder grade, custom home with only one previous owner. The first time we looked at the house, it was a hard "no" for (pregnant and emotionally erratic) me. I moved on, but my husband kept rooting for it and we went on a second tour. I finally caved after the persuasive speech he gave me (it's in a great neighborhood, our kids can ride their bikes in the street, all of the appliances are new...), and we made an offer. I remember sobbing the day we made an offer because I was sure that it was a mistake - in reality I was surely in a pregnant psychosis. Thank God my husband used his better judgement to convince me that this was the house for us. I am so grateful that we have this home, the property, the wooded, quiet neighborhood, and the friendly neighbors. Moral of the story - don't house shop while pregnant. :) 

The 3 1/2 of us on closing day. 8/5/16

The 3 1/2 of us on closing day. 8/5/16

From the minute we put the offer in on this house I started dreaming up its transformation - how I would take this builder grade, baby of a house and transform it into my charming dream home. I also dealt with a couple bouts of insomnia while pregnant, which led me to filling up Pintrest board after Pinterest board with house inspiration during my sleepless nights. While this house was not my country charmer, I was beginning to see the fun in turning it into one. It was just going to take a lot of paint, stain, trim, wallpaper, and creativity!

The first thing we did to the house was refinish the downstairs hardwood floors and install hardwoods upstairs. I pretty much told my husband that the only way I would agree to move there is if we could re-do the floors before we actually moved in. He agreed to my demands, and we had a hardwood floor company at our house 5 days after closing. [insert evil villain pregnant lady laugh] The downstairs floors were a blonde color that reminded me of bowling alley floors (again probably a pregnant exaggeration), and we had them , the stairs, and banister refinished in Minwax Dark Walnut. Upstairs there was cream colored wall-to-wall carpeting and we had Bruce pre-finished hardwoods installed in Dundee Saddle. The re-done floors made such a huge difference on the look of the house. I am so glad that we did them before we moved any furniture into the house - I would highly recommend it!

The new upstairs floors. You can see the old color of the stairs on the right - the floor refinishing contractor did a great job matching the colors. 

The new upstairs floors. You can see the old color of the stairs on the right - the floor refinishing contractor did a great job matching the colors. 

By the time we actually started living in the house I was 8 1/2 months pregnant and in  extreme nesting mode. I painted all of the bedrooms and completed the dining room board & batten project without letting my giant belly get in the way. I am still impressed with the amount I accomplished while I was THAT pregnant! I didn't know it then, but board & batten would be the easy project that would transform our house! I'm already planning a whole post about board & batten, so I will elaborate more about it later, but it made a huge impact on the house! Instant character for not a ton of money!

8 1/2 months pregnant, adding board and batten to the dining room!

8 1/2 months pregnant, adding board and batten to the dining room!

Nearly 2 years later, I have touched almost every room in the house, but I feel like I have only scratched the surface. In my next few blog posts I will elaborate on specific rooms and the projects I have taken on in that last 2 years.

Thanks so much for reading!

Dana

Follow along with me here on this blog and on my Instagram to see my progress, projects, and what inspires me.