Thursday, June 27, 2013

getting real.

Hi.  My name is Amy.  And I fell off the blogging wagon.  Now that we've gotten that over with... Want to see what the house looks like these days?

But first, a disclaimer:

I'm really sick of unpacking.  I'm anxious to put our mark on this place, but most nights I'd rather do something that isn't house related.  We've been going on lots of walks.  Playing in the dirt.  Celebrating birthdays, weddings and graduations.  Fishing in the retention pond.  Reading books.  Meeting neighbors.  Catching up on TV.  Visiting family.  Anything but hanging things on the walls and emptying more boxes. 

But I'm okay with it right now.  We've made some good progress on the garage.  The mirrors in E's bathroom were finally purchased and hung (just tonight!).  We've remodeled the laundry room (yes, already - more on that soon...).  We're getting there.  Slowly.

Now, back to the house.  These pictures were taken on my phone at 10:00 pm.  No staging involved.  Luckily, our house cleaner was here yesterday or it would have been worse :)

There is nothing on the walls in our bedroom.  Our lamps still have price tags and our shades are still covered in plastic.  We don't have a king sized blanket.  But we do have a bed.  And there are curtains hung - with real blinds behind them!

The master bathroom is in decent shape.  We have towel rings, cabinet hardware, towel books, accent towels and rugs!  I really want to add plantation shutters above the bathtub and I still need to figure out what to do with the vanity and wall in the middle of the sinks.

Rugs are hard to find.  I should be more specific. Rugs are hard to find when you're picky and cheap.  We finally found the one for the back door at Sam's.  But we continue to have a serious shoe problem back there.  I think I need to buy an organizer and bench for just inside the garage.

Also, the laundry room has been upgraded with a new tile floor, new baseboards and a fresh coat of paint.  The surrounding hardwood floors have also been replaced.  All thanks to a leaky washer hose.  We woke up one morning, not long after moving in, to a flooded basement, wet garage and soaked laundry room and powder room.  It was great fun.  But we're now the proud owners of washer hoses with a 20-year warranty!

Our drop zone continues to collect junk.  Although, it looks much better today than it has in months.  I really need to get some organizers and make this a useful spot to sort mail, store school bags, charge electronics, etc.  The powder room is in decent shape, though.  I still need to hang things on the walls and maybe even find a small table/stand for next to the door/across from the toilet.  It's a decently deep room and it would be nice to have a spot to store extra TP and other necessities.

I love our dining table.  And I love the design of our dining area rug...but I think it's too small.  I've been stalking Craigslist trying to find a long, narrow buffet for the big, blank wall.  I'm also on the lookout for curtains.  I'm debating whether to buy the same ones as the living room or try something different.  So many choices.  So few that I like.

We still need to add a tile backsplash in the kitchen.  I'm really leaning towards a grey glass subway tile.  And, we'll soon be adding two open shelves to the area next to the fridge/above the Keurig and wine.  So excited!

The living room continues to be a work in progress.  I recently picked up the wingback chair from Marshalls and love it.  The brown leather ottoman in front of the the armchair is on it's way out, I think.  I'm hoping to use the red pouf as a footstool instead.  But that means I need to bring in some more color.  I want to replace the art above the fireplace (an $8 find from Marshalls several years ago) with something a little more interesting.  And, I also want to bring in a small coffee table.  Maybe painted turquoise?  I continue to pick up random pillows whenever I'm out.  They still all have tags on them.  Shhh.

We just hung the mirrors in E's bathroom this evening.  It was difficult to find mirrors that fit the vanity and light fixtures.  I'm almost wondering if we should have done a large, framed rectangular mirror instead?  Unfortunately, at this point, the center outlet was in the way.  Maybe we should, instead, relocate the towel ring to the center?  Hmmmm.

Our queen sized sleigh bed is really too big for the spare bedroom.  But it works for now.  Ultimately, we'll move this bedroom set to a guest room in the basement.  For now, we've hung curtains.  But that's about it.  The highly hung curtains look so nice in magazines and online, but I'm not sure how I feel about them here.  Maybe the curtain rods are too small?  We still need to add blinds to these windows, paint the room, hang stuff on the walls and unpack everything that's thrown into the closet.  The bedding is in the wash as I type.

E's room is the only room in the house that has anything hung on the wall.  But it still needs permanent window coverings, more stuff for the walls, decorative pillows, etc.  It's a good thing we have such a cute little boy to distract from everything not finished!

The foyer is pretty much a blank slate.  Ultimately, the quilt rack will find a different home and we'd like to add board and batten along the two walls.  I'll probably add a bench and some hooks along one wall and a gallery wall of photos along the other wall.

The flex room is a complete dumping ground right now.  Toys.  Office stuff.  Man cave.  It's driving me nuts.

The basement is still completely overrun with boxes.  And, for now, I just avoid it.  About 25% is baby stuff we hope to need again someday.  Another 25% is man cave and craft room stuff that won't be unpacked until the basement is finished.  And the remainder is made up of holiday decorations and stuff that needs to be sorted through.  Someday.

And, despite looking like a complete disaster, the garage is in much better shape than it had been.  We have a few boxes left to carry to the basement, a patio set to relocate to our newly finished patio (woo hoo!) and a growing garage sale pile.  What's left should be able to be relocated to the extra garage bay after a couple more hours of work.  We're getting close!

I think the only areas fully unpacked are the freezer, pantry and fridge.  I can't tell you how nice it is to be able to stock up again.  Just don't pay attention to how desperately the pantry needs organized.  I've purchased shelves and baskets...I just need to empty it out and make order of it all.  Oddly enough, I enjoy that kind of thing. Organizing = fun.  Cleaning and Unpacking = no fun. 

So, two months in, that's where we're at.  Our concrete driveway, sidewalk and patio was just poured last week but we're still waiting on the land to be graded.  The builder is slowly working on the items we identified during our initial and 30-day walk through inspections.  The furnace has been repaired.  The laundry room has been remodeled.  The hot water heater has been fixed.  The garage door has been duct taped. Oh, the joys of home ownership.  But I wouldn't have it any other way.


  1. That guy with headset on, is like, REALLY super cute. Could I get his number?

  2. You guys have made a lot of progress and it's looking more and more like a home with each update. Don't worry too much with your progress in decorating the house. It's definitely a lot more space to work with compared to a condo, so having some boxes left unpacked doesn't cramp up the space. -Lakisha@Joanne Davidow

  3. I found your post on gardenweb regarding the reverie tub. Have you ended up liking it? We are building a house as well and I am thinking of purchasing it from Menard's. Just wanted to see if you had any feedback. Thanks!

  4. Dorothy, this is Amy's amazing husband, and I just wanted to tell you that we REALLY are enjoying the Reverie tub. It is big, dip and nice to relax in! Our 3 year old REALLY loves it too. No complaints at all! Definitely worth the price and it just looks amazing in the bathroom.

  5. Redesigning is a tiring job; however, dictating the feeling inside the house solely rests upon you. Your passion, interests, and desire will be reflected on the hue that you choose and the theme that you'll incorporate. Its been four months. I hope your new place looks much better now. :)

    Calvin @ City Block Team

  6. Your photos are strong evidence of your hate relationship with unpacking. Hehe! Its been four months, and I'm pretty sure you've been hard at work on the renovations. I can imagine an awesome place after the redo, and I'm looking forward to seeing the after photos. Any updates? :)

    Katy Desroches @

  7. Hi Amy! Quick question on the chairs at the island- love them, where did you find them?

  8. Hi Jenny! Really hope that checking out your blog (love it!) and calling you by name isn't too stalkerish ;) Anyway, the stools are from World Market ( and they are super well built. My only complaint is that the foot rest bars aren't round and aren't 100% comfy with bare feet. It's nothing that would prevent me from buying them again, though. Looks like they're on sale in store right now and if you sign up for their Rewards program, you can usually get another 10% off or so.

  9. Hi Amy! Not Stalkerish *at all*! I LOVE World Market! Great, thanks so much for the info. My husband went to Pottery Barn today to pick up a light we've been eyeing, and when he told the cashier we were building a house, they gave him an additional 15% off! Apparently you can get discounts by mentioning that so I am DEFINITELY going to see if I can get away with that more :)

  10. Thank you for documenting your build. Ypur house is beautiful! We are in the beginning stages and it feels like it will go on forever. Reading your blog has helped me to see that there will be an end that os worth it, and it has helped to see where we can get ahead of the game. Thank you for sharing, K

    1. Thanks so much for your sweet words!

  11. I love you home! Just beautiful! I am wondering if you would mind sharing what color the paint was that you used in the kitchen and living room?

    1. Aww, thanks so much! The kitchen and living room color is Gray Clouds by Sherwin Williams. Hope that helps!

  12. Hey, we recently just bought this tub for our new house build, but I guess the traditional tub faucet we have picked out doesn't work for it? Is there something particular that I need to search for, or do you remember the brand/style name of yours?

    1. Ah Nevermind, my plumber figured it out and the one we have will work. It's similar to yours so I didn't see why it wouldn't lol :)