A Tour of our New House…in all its “before photo” glory!
Hi guys! I am finally back on the blog with a new post! I had always planned on taking some time off to get settled in the new house, but I think getting settled just turned into procrastinating. Procrastinating on the blog AND procrastinating on the getting settled. The lazy days of summer came on hard and fast for me and I haven’t been getting a whole lot done, but WE ARE LOVING OUR NEW HOUSE! I am working on getting my butt back in gear because there is SO much work to be done, and I have SO much that I want to share! Starting of course with a tour!!!
If you remember in the tour of our first house, I mentioned that we went to settlement on both houses in the same day. Luckily both settlements went super smooth, but it was also stressful due to the fact that we couldn’t clean, prep or paint a single thing in the new house before moving our 18 thousand truckloads of stuff in. So one month in, we still don’t have fresh paint on the walls, and I FINALLY just got some curtains hung in the kids rooms last week. The house isn’t looking too pretty these days, but most of the rooms are at least functional. We’ll get there, or so the moms in my life keep telling me. I don’t have any bright shiny “after” photos to share with you today, but I will share what the house looked like the day we moved in and show you the one thing that COULD NOT be put off getting done within our first hours of ownership. On to the tour!
The year was 1966…
I don’t know my interior design history enough to know whether the majority of this house is still gloriously original from the year it was built, but I do know that it hasn’t been updated in…a while. We bought a 1960’s ranch and boy howdy (as the kids would say), do we have our work cut out for us. First stop, the kitchen.
One of the main reasons that our old house was no longer working for us was the kitchen. It was small and square and difficult to work in with a family of four underfoot. A larger kitchen was a top priority when looking for a new house. The size of our new kitchen definitely has quite a bit of potential, and a healthy dose of old appliances, linoleum and zero counter space to go with it. The kitchen remodel is definitely the biggest renovation that we plan on doing in this house, and fingers crossed that it is one of the first that we tackle as well. It’s going to be a big job though since we want to take down some walls to extend it into the “not really needed” formal living room to create a more open floor-plan which will include a large dining room table, an island, and hopefully a pantry! We have been planning our dream kitchen in our heads for literally years, so we are beyond excited (and more than a little intimidated) to actually start planning it in real life from the ground up!
Off the kitchen is a powder room and a large pantry. The powder room is the only bathroom in the house that looks like it has had some updates (those curtains came with the house).
We are loving the pantry right now for storage. Most of the stuff that we are storing in there we used to have to store in our basement, so it is definitely convenient. As much as we are loving it though, if we are able to work a pantry into our new kitchen floor plan, we are thinking of converting this room into a mudroom, since it is right inside the garage door. I have always wanted a place tucked away to hide all the crap that always gets dumped in the kitchen, shoes, backpacks, etc, so I am pretty excited about that.
The formal living room that I mentioned, sits on the other side of the kitchen, behind the built-in oven (that doesn’t even fit my cookie sheets) and the long solid wall that secludes it from the rest of the house. It amazes me that his house can be 50 years old and nobody ever thought to cut a doorway to connect it to the kitchen! Different times I guess. Anyway, we want to do more than a doorway, and take about half that wall down. I am so excited to have all that natural light from the big bay window shine into my now quite dark kitchen! It’s a large space and we are still working out how to best utilize it. We are pretty positive that it will at least include a dining room table, some type of hutch/china cabinet, and maybe a sitting/reading area.
Since the dining room is being included in the kitchen expansion plans, that leaves the “formal dining room” open to become my office/kids craft room! You may have caught a shot of this room on instagram/facebook. Yeah, I haven’t gotten much further in the set up of this room, but at least I have a little desk space that enabled this blog post to get written and some photos to get edited. My dreams for the room include a place for my sewing machine, craft and blog stuff, along with the kids paints, markers, play-doh etc. It will probably hold all our wrapping paper supplies as well, like my old office did. I want to make it a fun and creative space that we can all use. I am excited that it is far enough away from the bedrooms that I can use my sewing machine without worrying about waking anybody, and that we will be able to work on projects without having to clear the table at the end of each day for dinner. It should also be a great space for working on homework, away from the distraction of the tv room. I am very excited to narrow down some paint colors and start getting this room put together. I already picked up this rug for it on my last trip to IKEA!
Speaking of rugs…holy wall to wall carpet. That is the one thing in the house that made us put the moving truck in park for a few hours right after settlement. Before we started unpacking anything, we started ripping out carpet. The majority of this house was covered in wall to wall carpet including the foyer and dining room.
The only rooms to escape it were the kitchen, the bathrooms, and one of the bedrooms. Luckily, underneath all of that carpet was hard wood floors!!! We were so thrilled to discover hardwoods under everything, and even more excited to realize that they were in pretty good shape! We ended up leaving the carpet in Gage’s room and the master because they were relatively new, and surprisingly went pretty well with our design plans for those spaces. Everywhere else though? History! Luckily both of our dads were over to help that day along with an uncle and a few of our friends, so they may have been lured in with the idea of hauling boxes, but they were forced to pull thousands of staples instead.
In the photo above you can see a glimpse of the fireplace and BUILT-INS in what will be our living room! A fireplace was another item on our wish-list, and the built-ins were just a huge bonus.
This room is right off of the kitchen, and is another space that we hope to open up a little more to keep it from feeling so secluded. This will be our main living room/tv room/den. Of course my husband already has his tv above the mantel and I am dying to paint those shelves and fill them up. We won’t even talk about how excited I am to decorate for Christmas this year with a fireplace in the house or how excited we were to get that disgusting carpet hauled out! Down the line, we will also be converting to some type of central air, so we can get that AC unit out of there as well.
Since this is a ranch house, all of the bedrooms are located right down the hall from the main living space. Our old house was a cape-cod with the kid’s bedrooms on the first floor and the master upstairs. I am beyond thrilled to be sleeping on the same floor as the kids! And so far, no little ones have made their way into our bed in the middle of the night yet.
Gage’s room is a little smaller than his old room, but we don’t plan on his bedroom being a combo playroom in this house, so it hasn’t been an issue.
Ellie’s is a little larger than her old bedroom, with about twice the closet space, which she will appreciate much more in a few years.
The kids share a hall bathroom, in all its mint green glory.
The master bedroom is definitely a downsize from the master in our old house, but we knew that no matter where we moved that would be a sacrifice that we would probably have to make.
It’s still a decent size, but with about a 1/3 of closet space and 1/4 of the bathroom than we had before. Don’t worry, they didn’t limit that mint green tile to just the hall bathroom though.
We got really lucky that this house is actually a 4 bedroom! As much as I would love to have a guest room, we have decided to make the 4th bedroom into a playroom which is just so much more practical for us right now. AND on the other side of that wall is the TV room, which means that if we put a doorway in there, the playroom will instantly be connected to the rest of the house!
Right outside the bedrooms we also have a laundry closet. It holds our washer and dryer and gives us tons of storage shelves. I love that it is conveniently located, but I am definitely still getting used to having no where to iron or separate my clothes. I miss my old laundry room in the basement that I could retreat to with a podcast and have an hour to myself…with my laundry. First world problems I know.
Under the house, we do have an almost entirely unfinished basement that runs the full length. We believe that one end of it may have been an apartment since it is partially finished with a full bathroom, closet, separate entrance, and more wall to wall carpet. For now we are using this space as our gym and the rest of the basement as amazing and spacious storage! I know you’re jealous of that bathroom.
The basement also holds one of Gage’s absolute favorite things in the whole house, a very narrow, metal spiral staircase, which terrifies me. Luckily there is also access to the basement from a regular staircase off the kitchen, so we try to keep the door to the spiral locked so that it is not treated as a jungle gym, much to the kids dismay.
The two biggest reasons for us moving out of our old house was the kitchen, as I mentioned, and the lack of property/privacy. So they were the main factors when we started looking at houses, and this property is definitely what sold us. Our new house sits on just over an acre, backs up to woods and is surrounded by trees.
It is almost completely private, but is still within a neighborhood! I feel like we were able to get the best of both worlds in this house, the privacy that we were craving, but still being able to go for a walk around the neighborhood with the kids, and can take them trick-or-treating in the fall. We have already been to a neighborhood picnic, and had a playdate with other kids in the neighborhood. It has far exceeded my expectations and the kids haven’t stopped exploring.
Can you tell I am kind of in love with our new house? The idea of how much work is ahead of us, is more than a little overwhelming, but it is also exciting to get to make this home are own. And it does help knowing that if the house did not need the updates that it does, it would have been priced way outside of our budget and we never would have been able to buy it to begin with. Now we can take our time, update things little by little over the next few years, and make this into our forever home.
Sorry, this kind of turned into a 3 hour tour. Hopefully this slew of “before” pictures is enough to get my barely blogging butt in gear to start transforming some spaces. I can’t handle all these white walls! My goal for this week (or maybe next) is to get some color painted somewhere, ANYWHERE!
Anybody have any favorite paint colors to recommend? I am definitely leaning towards the blues and turquoise-y greens in this house. Maybe Sherwin-Williams Mariner for the front door?
Now that I have things up and running, I should be blogging more regularly again. I will be posting updates here, as some of these spaces come together, and I will of course be sharing on Facebook and Instagram as well, so be sure to follow me over there for more updates in “real-time!” If you missed out on the tour of our “first house” before we moved out, you can check that out here!
Now anybody want to come over and help me paint? Every. Single. Room? And the ceilings?