Thursday, July 28, 2016

one year houseiversary

It's been a year since we signed on the dotted line and bought our home sweet home--- a year that included some renovating and many hours of dreaming, planning, fixing, and memories.

(So many people have asked about our two front doors. Finally, I decided to look it up. Our house was built in 1850 and is a Pennsylvania German Two Door Farmhouse. It was built as a single home, but had 2 front doors to maintain symmetry. These specific kinds of farmhouses are only found in Southeastern PA and some parts of Jersey and Delaware.)

When we bought our house a selling point was that there was no need for renovations, especially because I was 8 months pregnant. I said something to Aaron like - "I would love the blue trim paint changed and the wallpaper removed." About 36 hours after purchase, one wall came down and then another. There are serious perks to being in a family of contractors. There was a month of renovations that included removing wallpaper, removing walls, exposing brick, adding fans and lights, adding a half bath, refinishing the floors, and me hormonally fretting that we wouldn't move in before I had Eliza. Looking back, I'm so grateful that we did the work before we moved in. An open concept with kids makes life so much easier.

night of settlement - bye, bye wallpaper

play area - after

wall between living/play rooms

other side - after

sweet green fireplace and living/dining room before

dining/living room - after(ish)

living room- before

living room - after(ish)

dining room before

dining room - after-ish

The next few months we spent finishing the half bath, focusing on our outside property, and trying to survive our sweet baby girl and her reflux. Aaron and his brother trimmed multiple trees, removed two major hedgerows, removed random fencing, and finished fencing the yard. This spring they ground all the stumps in the yard and Aaron started cleaning up the fence line. I planted grass, put brick around our flower beds and attempted to keep the gardens weed free and alive.

back yard - before

back yard - after

We have big dreams for our house like a master suite and a big, bright kitchen, which includes removing more walls. We have projects on the docket for August that include re-roofing our back addition, fixing our mudroom area, and moving the laundry to our second floor. If we've learned anything, its that old houses take lots of work. We bought a lifetime project, but we love it.

There were things that made us fall in love with our home from the minute we first laid eyes on it --- the beautiful wide plank floors, the double fireplaces, the big, bright rooms and amazing backyard. The sweetest surprises though, have been what we've discovered since moving here. We live in a historic town and have front row seats for the Memorial Day parade and a triathalon in the fall that comes right down our road. Each season has been amazing seeing what plants pop up out of the ground. I have a black thumb and, therefore, couldn't be more grateful for the incredible perennial gardens that we have. Last summer, we discovered blackberry bushes all over the property. This year I'm determined to pick them before they die and maybe make some jam. When we were house searching, location was a big deal and this house has delivered. We are so close to everything including our church, Everett's school, walking trails, 2 local orchards and 3 great towns. We live in horse farm country, but are only 5 minutes outside the nearest big town. A year later and we're more in love with this house than the day we first saw it.

We're grateful for the help of family. Grateful for this big dream of ours that has been more than we could've ever asked for. We're hopeful that it will be a place that friends, family and our community would feel welcome and that we will accumulate so many sweet memories as we raise our family here. One year down, 50 more to go. ;)


Joye Neff and Nicky "BG #38330" said...

What a beautiful home you've made! I love what you have done to make it "yours."

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