It is hard to believe that we have been calling this little stone house our home for just about five years already. Those five years have literally flown by. In honor of the five year anniversary of living here I thought that it would be fun to take a look back at where we started and reminisce about how far this house has come since we moved in. This home was built in the late 50s and the previous owners took wonderful care of the home. The previous owners actually built the home and were the only owners of the home until we bought it. They are actually friends of my husband’s family and the son was my husband‘s high school science teacher… so yeah small town life, haha. They just loved this home and took pride in it. We definitely think it’s a special little house and we’re so thankful for it.
The house has really great bones. It is charming and simple, but it definitely lacked character, in my opinion. Besides the stone fireplace in our living room for me just lacked the cozy charm that I love so much. When fixing up the different rooms, my main goal was really to add character and charm to each room and just make it ours so that it felt like our home and fit within our style.
One of the first things, actually, I think it was the first thing I did when we moved into this house was remove all of the heavy drapery from the windows. Literally we got the keys and walked in and I took them down, haha. It happened so quickly I don’t even have pictures of the rooms with them up. We did leave the old metal blinds just for privacy reasons in some of the rooms but just letting natural light in made a world of difference.
Sometimes when updating your home you have to spend money on things that aren’t really fun. What I mean by that is sometimes you have to spend money on things that aren’t exciting things like pillows and blankets and decorations and art. You have to spend money on insulation, windows, electrical and plumbing. Things that you don’t really see, but that are really important and necessary. That was where we found ourselves in this house. There were things we had to address that cost money that weren’t really fun or exciting and didn’t make big impacts because they were hidden in walls. One thing that I didn’t think would make a big impact was replacing the windows. It was a big expense and I wasn’t excited about it at all. I was pleasantly surprised to see how impactful it was both on the inside and outside of our house. Looking back I’m really happy that we spent the time and the money to replace the windows because it really helped to make our home more beautiful. It was definitely something that I underappreciated at the time but really appreciate now.
For a couple years the only thing that we did in the space was replace the windows. Then we lived with it as it was because we were addressing other things and other rooms in the house. When the time finally came I think I was most excited to take the wallpaper down. I know in pictures it can look quite charming, but I was very tired of it. It is difficult to see in pictures, but it wasn’t in the best shape. It was peeling away from the walls and had definitely seen better days. If this home and remodeling it has taught me anything it is that I hate wallpaper. If you ever hear me say that I want to put wallpaper up in my home please, please, please remind me of this post and remind me of the hours that we spent pulling wallpaper and glue off the walls. We have now officially removed wallpaper from 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 rooms…it is not fun that’s all I’m going to say…it is not fun. It’s actually a nightmare, haha.
You can’t see it in any of the pictures that I have in this post. I actually don’t think I have any pictures of it in the bedroom, but this room along with the living room, dining room, and hallway had green shag carpet and it was awful… really awful. Along with removing wallpaper we had to refinish the floors that were hiding underneath the carpet. They are a beautiful skinny red oak. I knew that I did not want oil based finish or stain because I didn’t want them to turn yellow which often happens with oil based finish. We rented a sander and sanded them down to their natural state. When I say we, I mean my husband.
I knew in the space I wanted some type of feature wall or wood element that added character. I personally really love wood on walls. I love shiplap, v-groove, bead board. To me it adds that old time character that I love so much. I knew that I wanted to do that. Actually the wall that we put the shiplap on still has wallpaper behind it. We were so tired of the wallpaper removal process in our bedroom because it was just awful to try to get off. We gave up and just shiplapped over it, so it worked out perfectly.
In this space I really wanted to create a calm, peaceful, restful environment. I didn’t want anything loud or bold or dark. I really just wanted a light simple space. I wanted to be able to open the shades in the morning as the sun was coming up and just really enjoy that sunshine streaming in. For that reason I decided to keep the walls white and we went with alabaster from Sherwin-Williams. For the trim we went with a color called Grant Beige. My husband and I took our honeymoon in Williamsburg Virginia and we’ve actually visited many times since then. We love looking at the buildings in Williamsburg and something that I notice of that time period is a lot of the walls were left light, but they would do darker trim color. I knew I definitely wanted to do that in our bedroom and I’m really glad we did. The white walls keep it light and the colored trim added the charm I was looking for.
Because of the L-shaped window in this room it was difficult for us to fit our existing furniture. The wood furniture is my husband’s from when he was still living at home. His parents purchased it for him and he brought it along when he bought his first home. Then we met, got married and I moved into the home that he already owned. It is good, well made furniture, and while it’s not what I would choose, there is no reason to get rid of it. We did however, decide to sell the large wood bed frame and invest in a good quality iron bed from a company called Wesley Allen. We wanted something that would compliment the furniture we had and help to not block the windows. The bed was definitely the final touch in this space and has added so much beauty and charm to it. Don’t you think?
If living in this home has taught me anything, it’s patience. We can easily find ourselves frustrated and covetous when we see space upon space on the internet fixed up and remodeled in a 15 second reel. But that’s not real life, friends. Remodeling takes time and money. I’ve learned more than anything these past 5 years to be thankful and content with what we have. I’ve learned to make our home cozy and inviting with what I have and where I’m at. I’ve learned to live through slow remodels. (Like having your bed in the living room for 2 months 😅) You can find contentment in your home even if it doesn’t look like a spread in a magazine. Keep your home tidy, keep it clean and decluttered. Care for the things you DO have even if you don’t “love them” maybe your furniture is outdated, or you have wallpaper you hate. You can make it beautiful and welcoming despite its flaws. You can practice gratitude anyway.
Thanks for stopping by today!