Scenes from our house...

Built in cabinets in bathroom.

Sorry it has been so long since my last post. We were in Florida for a while for a wedding. I wish we were still there because the weather here as reverted back to February and it might actually snow tonight! Ugh! I'm so mad.
At least the cold weather made it a lot easier to work on my walls today but it's still depressing.

Spring! What happened to you? Come back to us!

In an attempt to catch everyone up on what our house looks like and also cover the fact that nothing as changed except for glue coming off the walls, today I am posting more pictures of some of the features that sold us on our house.

Today's special: the bathroom. The pink, purple and green bathroom.

I'll be honest, when we first started looking at houses we only knew that we were attracted to older homes and more specifically the bungalow style homes. When my eyes first met the pastel-ness of this bathroom, I had no idea that it was historically correct. Honestly, I just thought it was ugly.
I have since changed my mind. Even though our 5'2" x 7'8" bathroom is smaller than most closets of brand new homes (my in-laws are building a house and their shower is bigger than our entire bathroom!), I have fallen in love with our pastel lavatory. It is unique and yet another reminder of how we didn't fall prey to the larger, cookie cutter homes that other people our age tend to buy.
Not that there is anything wrong with that, of course, just not for us.
We will, however, have to do some updating to the bathroom. For one thing, the outlets are outdated. My hairdryer won't work even with the adaptors. The tub/shower is right next to our wood casing around the window and our wood built-in cabinets. For now it is okay, we have a shower curtain in front of the window that protects from water but I am worried about the moisture in general ruining the wood. We also need to add a fan for ventilation.
We have been tossing around ideas of how we will change the bathroom. I think the major things we'll do is change to a pedestal sink and perhaps a new toilet. The toilet is original but it doesn't really work all that well. It takes a lot of coaxing, which is really annoying when you have guests over. The other major thing is getting a clawfoot tub but we'll have to do something about the tile. I don't want to have to take out the tile but I'm hoping we will be able to match it with lots of patient research and probably a significant amount of money! Oh and, of course, we will eventually remove the wall paper. I'm not a flower pattern kind-of gal.
For now, it is a totally usable bathroom and we'll have to live with it a while longer before anything changes in there. We would like to have another bathroom before we tackle this one.
One more thing, there is a line of the pinkish-purplish tiles missing and someone replaced them with cheap, shiny white tiles. I would like to replace those but I am having a horrible time finding something that matches. This is probably the same problem we'd run into with the floor tile. Oh well, more research and that's always fun. For me anyways.

Tile on bathroom floor.

Bathroom when we moved in, May 2004.



It's The Little Things (continued...)


The first thing we changed in the house was beginning to tackle the vinyl wallpaper on our plaster walls. That is still a work in progress. The second improvement we made was not only aesthetic but for safety reasons as well. That was changing the back door knob and adding double cylinder locks to all of our doors.

Above are before and after shots of our back door. When we moved in the back door had the shiny, brass knob and lock. They were probably only a few years old. But it just didn't fit in with the rest of the house. We have two other doors that have original door handles and locks but we added the same double cylinder deadbolt locks as you see above. The locks are Baldwin and are very heavy and sturdy feeling. And the finish is the oil rubbed bronze. Finding these locks actually took considerable research. But we were so happy with the results.

Like we like to say, it's the little things that make us happy here!


I really hope this isn't too gross to show on our blog!! This is what our dog, Harley, looked like the day after his surgery. Poor guy!

Harley comes home from surgery.

Our Patient

Unfortunately, our most recent project has been our dog, Harley. About three weeks ago his back legs suddenly went out on him. And I mean suddenly. As in, we woke up one morning to get ready for work, as per usual, and found that five year old, one hundred and nine pound dog couldn't walk. After numerous vet visits and vet conversations and two emergency vet visits plus one surgery, we finally have a dog that is walking (better).
He had the surgery on April 4. I've posted some pictures of what he looked like when we brought him home. We were so surprised by the amount of hair they had to shave!! We call it his reverse mohawk. You never know, he might be starting a fashion trend!
The doctors initially thought he had a slipped disc. But after a myelogram, which he had right before surgery, they couldn't find anything substantially wrong with his discs. We opted for the surgery anyways. The surgeon found a fatty tumor which he removed.
We picked him up the day after the surgery and he seemed to be doing about 75% better. But by the weekend we had to take him back to the emergency vet for a catheter and a shot of Prednisone. Now he is almost back to the old Harley! We are so happy to have him back and hopefully he will be able to take long walks again soon! We are all missing the good weather that is on it's way back!


Another shot of the Living Room and the front door. April 2004.

Dining Room December 2004.

Living Room Looking Into Dining Room. April 2004.

Living Room April 2004

More Changes

I started to show you some of the changes we've made so far to the house and there are a few other things I'll share. But I was thinking that maybe I'll show some pics of what the house looks like in general. For now, I just started with the livng room and the dining room. Obviously, most of the pictures I've shown were before we moved in. Except for the dining room picture taken in December. That was my feeble attempt at decorating for Christmas. Somehow when you have wall paper half way off the walls and ladders and drills sitting around, it just doesn't totally feel like Christmas!
Anyway, you can't really tell in the pictures but there was wall paper on all the walls, the thick vinyl kind. I already talked about that in another post. Unfortunately, the place doesn't look that much different. We just have some furniture in the house now. We still have those nasty curtains the house came with. Hopefully, later this year we will be getting new blinds throughout the house. First we have to get the walls clean, get insulation, rewire the electrical, paint the walls....well, you get the idea!! Priorities....


Living room wall: with glue on the left and without wall paper glue on the right. Does it get any more exciting than this? But really, removing the glue is hard work but feeling the smooth plaster and seeing the room lighten up sans glue is rewarding!

Our first attempt at removing the vinyl wall paper. We quickly abandoned the wall paper steamer! June 2004.

Changes So Far

Like I said in an earlier post, we have lots of dreams for our home but thus far have had limited resources. Our big project last year was saving for our wedding which was this past November. Now we can focus more on the house.
But we did have the chance to make some changes here and there. It's the small accomplishments that keep us motivated!
One of the first things we did was start to remove the wall paper. Our plaster walls had/have wall paper on every single wall. Thankfully, I feel like we've been fairly lucky as there has been only one layer (so far) of wall paper, which makes it tons easier to remove. Above is a picture of my husband and I when we first started to take the wallpaper off. Now we have the paper off in the living room, the dining room, the kitchen and the hall. BUT removing the paper isn't the hard part.
The hard part is removing the glue from the plaster walls. You would think after six months of dreary, cold, midwestern winter that I would have all the glue removed from the walls.
You would also be drastically wrong! Why remove glue when you can curl up on the couch next to a fire and watch movies all day?
The glue is gone from the dining room and almost all of the living room. Above is a picture of what a wall looks like with glue and without glue. Only 15 walls to go. Or something like that. Sigh.

Our house as we bought it in May 2004.

New to this blog thing

I just wanted to put a note out there that I am going to be messing with this thing over the next few days or so to figure it out. So if things look a little crazy and unorganized...that's because they are! Just bear with me while I figure out what I'm doing!

In The Beginning

Finally! I've been reading house blogs for about a year now and I've been wanting to have one of our very own since about the time we bought our house. So here I am ... joining the ranks of all you other house bloggers out there. I'll try my best to make it as interesting and informative as the ones I read on a daily basis. I'll try to update as much as I can but sometimes there isn't a lot going on at our house due to either lack of time, money, or just pure laziness, there may not be posts everyday.
So on to the real purpose of the blog ... our house.
We (we being myself and my husband) purchased our house in May of 2004. It is our first home. It was about the first or second house I actually went to look at. The first time I saw the house, I knew that I was very interested in it. I saw immediate potential in the hardwood floors, chunky woodwork (all original, intact and in a dark mahogony color) and even the purplish pink and green tiled bathroom. Sure, there needed updates here and there (like the hideous 1970s kitchen) but I really, really liked the house. I snapped lots of pictures because my husband (at that time my fiance) was finishing school in Florida. So I would go look at a house and send him pictures. He really liked the house as well. Less than four weeks after thinking "maybe we should buy a house instead of moving to another apartment" we were at the closing table signing millions of papers.
And just like that, we were the owners of a cute bungalow in a historic part of town with lots of dreams and hopes for the house. And little cash to make them happen right now...but one day!
Let the fun begin...