Friday, February 27, 2015

First Project in Our New Home

This weather just can't make up its mind! 60 degrees over the weekend, snowing today. I now have a two hour delay for work but since they didn't announce it until this morning, I am wide awake at my usual time so I figured I'd take the chance to write about our first project this morning. 

Remember when I said we didn't need to do anything in our new home after we moved in? Well... that doesn't mean that I don't get the itch to do small projects anyway! 

That being said, we built some shelves over the weekend. These may look familiar because they are the exact same shelves that we built in our bathroom at the old house. 

Here's a reminder of the shelves at the old house that were above the toilet:

We have a built-in desk off of the kitchen in the new house. I really want it to function like a desk but was getting the feeling that it was going to function more like a junk collector since it is conveniently off to the side and sort of out of plain view. Seems like a perfect landing place for things that I don't want on the kitchen counter. Solution? Make it pretty! When I make things pretty I have a much greater chance of keeping them clean and neat. Although pretty was my main goal, I still wanted the shelves to be functional.

A few weeks ago, I made some home binders in an attempt to become more organized with our paperwork. I don't know if it's just us, but we hoard paper like crazy. I just always have that feeling like, oh we might need that later, we might need that for our taxes, etc. So a Pinterest post inspired me (of course) to organize it all into binders. There's a binder for pets, cars, general house information, medical information, etc. The point of all that is that the binders were taking up too much space on the desk. So I thought they should be on a shelf. Within reach but not in the way. In a way, the binders lit the fire for creating the shelves. Just another example of one Pinterest project leading to another and another until my life is spiraling out of control with unfinished projects. 

I'm happy to report that we started AND finished the shelves this weekend... no unfinished projects here! 

Here is the before... sorry for the photo quality. These were snapped with my iPhone and the lighting was not great. I never claimed to be a photographer but you'll get the idea. 

The during:

            Bottom shelf back support 

   Top & bottom back and side supports 

Just like the bathroom shelves, I styled the desk shelves with things around the house. Oh yeah, and those binders I talked about. Something had to be functional! And I put our printer back on the desk because we really do plan to use it as a desk and not everything office-y is pretty, sadly. I'm sure I'll change the decor around. I already have some ideas but I'm trying to avoid going shopping... ;) 

Here's a recap:



ANYONE can make these shelves, they are SO EASY!!!! The part that takes the longest is waiting for your finish to dry! 

I hope everyone has a great week! Stay warm! 

Friday, February 20, 2015

State of Our Life Address: Part 3

Hopefully this is the LAST post that deserves a state of our life address title... 

As it stands now in February, life has gone back to normal and we couldn't be more thankful! We have our own space, all of our belongings in one city and in one house, and our sanity! It is a HUGE adjustment to go from owning your own 2000 square feet to sharing space again. We are thankful to have had my mom's house and my dad's house to crash in while we were in limbo, but nothing beats your own home. 

After our house in Greenville sold, we began looking for homes more seriously. We knew that now, we could actually make a move if we found something we loved. The problem was- now that we could make a move, we couldn't find a house that we wanted to make a move on!! My two must-haves were a formal dining room and a kitchen that was open to the living room. I didn't think that was too much to ask for! The real estate inventory seemed pretty low. 

We went to see a few houses. Existing homes, new construction. Some needed updating, some didn't have a formal dining room, none of them had that feeling of home that I was looking for when we walked in. Ian, on the other hand, is pretty easy to please. Our agent joked that he liked every house we looked at. At one point, we put in an offer on a home in one of the neighborhoods we liked. After doing some research, I felt that it was WAY overpriced. So we put in what I considered to be a fair offer. The sellers rejected our offer flat out. They didn't even send a counteroffer. What that said to me was a) they didn't really want to sell their house and b) it wasn't meant to be. Funny story was that about two days after they rejected our offer, another house right around the corner from theirs went on the market. It was the exact same house and was listed for about $20,000 less than theirs (which was approximately what we had offered). I'm sure that made them nervous... and probably made them wish they had negotiated with us! The same day that the matching house went on the market, we had an appointment to look at it after we both got off work. We knew we'd like it if it showed well because we'd already seen another version of it. We anticipated that we would be putting in an offer on it. That afternoon, last minute, I found another listing for a new construction home and called our agent to see if she would schedule a showing immediately after our first one. I told her I knew it'd be dark, but I just wanted to see it because if we didn't look, I'd probably have that nagging feeling. 

We got to the matching house that evening. It showed very well, we liked the floorplan, and it was definitely a contender. I knew we could be happy in the house. The one compromise I'd be making was that it had no formal dining room. Ian was sold on this one. He was ready to make an offer. He even said, "I don't think we need to go see the next house." 

But I insisted. We drove to the new construction house in the dark. We couldn't get in the front door because the code our agent had was incorrect. So the neighbor and her little girls came over and gave us the code! Point #1 for the new construction house- friendly neighbors!! When we walked in, we both loved loved loved it! Ian could not stop smiling and neither could I! He even muttered the words, "I think this is it." He had forgotten about the matching house already! This was the only house that we both finally had that feeling I was searching for. It had a formal dining room and an open kitchen! It checked all of my boxes and was beautiful! So we went back to our agent's office and submitted an offer!!!! Who needs to sleep on a major life decision?? Not these two... ;) 

Three weeks later, we were homeowners again! And we began the process of re-packing our boxes to have them moved for the LAST TIME! We moved in on December 19 so we were able to spend Christmas in our new place, although I'll admit that I didn't put up a tree! 

We have loved this house from the moment we got here. We have no regrets and have enjoyed adding our touch to each room! One of the best things about having a new construction home is that there was NO work to be done when we got here! No painting, no cleaning, no updating. We can just be. Obviously, I have little projects that I'll be working on over time but there is nothing that I have to do right now. 

I will take pictures and post a home tour soon! For now, here are a few from the original listing. 

            Front door into dining room

              Living room into kitchen
                Living room windows

              Kitchen into living room