Happy House-iversary!

Two years ago this week, my husband, Dave, and I purchased a beaten down, 100-year old foreclosure.

Our lives have not been the same since.

When we moved in, our plumbing did not work, we had to walk around in the dark because very few of our light fixtures worked and you couldn’t get me to step foot inside our downstairs bathroom!

The only reason I agreed to buying this place was because I thought we were going to take out a massive home improvement loan which would allow us to completely remodel the insides and out in under a year.

(Famous last words of a homeowner newbie, right?)

Needless to say, we never did take out that loan.

Nevertheless, we have come a loooong way in two years and it feels so good to see our To-Do list shrinking!  So in honor of our 2nd House-iversary, I thought I would put together a little timeline of how Dave and I have brought meaning and beauty into what was once an eyesore…


Our very first project: Scraping the filthy layer of popcorn texturing off the ceilings.

Next, I repainted the kitchen cabinets.
(Their former colors were black and cream.  Who chose that??)

Our first hired project: Replumbing the entire house.

We painted EVERYTHING! Doors, walls, trim, ceilings–EVERYTHING!


Lights! Fans!
It was so miraculous to finally have these two luxuries in our home.

Thanks to a tornado that blew through in May, our insurance replaced our dilapidated roof.

Pruning back all of the bushes, squirrels nests and dead branches made the exterior of our home look a lot less menacing.

The whole house seemed to change after we ripped out all the stained, smelly carpet and then sanded and painted the floors.

After 15 months of cooking in crock-pots and on hotplates, we FINALLY purchased a new gas stove!

Various improvements were made to our bathrooms–especially the one downstairs!


After waiting a year, we finally were able to take advantage of Clyde’s good soil and plant a garden!

Ding-dong the shed is dead! I thank God every day for its absence.

Our kitchen feels brand new with the addition of wainscoting and the removal of a strip of view-blocking cabinets.

What’s a house without furniture? A BIG MESS, that’s what!
It feels so good to have a place to put our stuff.

Even though Dave and I have had to live in less-than-ideal conditions these past two years, I’m glad we didn’t take out that loan.  Instead of creating more debt for ourselves, we created more memories and more appreciation for the simpler things in life.

Hopefully in two more years we will have finished our To-Do list which includes:

-Replacing the kitchen countertops and backsplash

-Remodeling the laundry room and covered porch

-Replacing all the windows and installing wood flooring

-Digging a water well and installing a pump

-Reupholstering all the furniture

-Landscaping the yard

-And a bunch of other stuff…


Do you believe in having a beautiful AND useful home?

Check out the William Morris Project at Pancakes and French Fries, an insightful blog about how to make more sense of life’s messes.


13 thoughts on “Happy House-iversary!

  1. Nice work, both of you! It’s nice when the basics are taken care of (plumbing, electrical) but it’s also nice when you have little comforts here and there, like pretty cabinets and drawers. That stove is AWESOME, by the way! 🙂 We have a lot of painting to do…or maybe that’s my solo project. You’re motivating me to get started this weekend, hooray! 😀

      • The kitchen! I’m always here, whether I’m cooking or not, so this is kinda “my room.” I’m just going with white paint and rely on other stuff to brighten up the room with color. 🙂

  2. Can’t remember….I probably tell you this every week! We bought a Queen Anne Victorian when we were first married. It didn’t have all the bells and whistles….like electricity in every room! Spent 11 yrs restoring it. We moved from there over 13 yrs ago and I still miss it.
    The picture of you fawning over your stovetop made me laugh because I know! I get it!

    • Thank, Kristina! BTW, Pam said I have the same kitchen light fixture as you. Since you have such great taste, I am even MORE happy with my selection. ha ha 🙂

  3. I can relate to so much of this! We have popcorn ceilings we haven’t even begun to think of tackling. And we have rooms that still need paint (and wallpaper removed). And don’t even talk to me about stairs! (Love that you chose Thoreau for your quotation.) OK, deep breath: We can only do in one day what we can do in one day. I think you can do more in one day than we can! Happy House-iversary! You definitely deserve cake and candles for all the progress you’ve made.

    • Oh my gosh, Rita, you sound like me! Once you mention one project that needs to be done about 50 more pop in your head, right? Oh Lord, help us! 🙂 The day after we closed on the house, we scraped those naaasty ceilings. Since we didn’t have water in the house, we had to bring our own in every bottle and container we could find. Egh! Like I say, memories.

  4. Oh my, now I know where you live at and may just have to visit.
    I used to walk past this house, looking through the windows, thinking how I’d love to live in there.
    I’ve always loved it. And you guys have made great progress. Congrats.

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