Sunday, August 21, 2011

project bathroom: part 1

I am a man of efficiency. I calculate everything out in my head in advance to the point that it will drive Mere bonkers in some instances. Thankfully, she has come to expect it and accept it at times. If I can somehow save two steps, one plastic bottle, configuring the dishwasher so basically our whole kitchen can fit inside of it…I will find a way. This is why I feel a bit guilty with my first project as a homeowner. The house we purchased had a nice bathroom. It had been remodeled recently with perfectly good fixtures and tile, but I had to think about it. Since our house was built in 1950, it has only one bathroom. This got the wheels turning with some influence from my career. Although the bathroom is perfectly fine as is, it is definitely not our style. Knowing that we would want to change it in the future, we better get it done now or we would be without a bathroom at some point. With this thought, I put my normal thought process aside and started swinging my demo club. It felt good, really good, at least for the first day. Since I was doing the demo all by myself, the work did get a bit messy and of course took longer than I originally thought. Currently, the bathroom is just the shell of its former self. I have completed the demo and it is waiting to be rebuilt. We will be putting in a new cabinet (stone slab counter with an undermount sink), new hex floor tile, new subway wall tile for the tub, new paint, new trim, and all new finishes. The pictures below show the original and current state of the bathroom. Hopefully I will be posting some progress pictures soon, as our move in date is rapidly approaching!



house prior to purchase.

Here are some pictures of our casa before we purchased it. As you may know from previous posts, we are in the middle of remodeling the bathroom. Also, since our furniture and overall decor is different from the last owners, every room will have a new look once we move in. Regardless, we loved what they did with it and this will give you a good feel for the new house. Yes, the baby swing in the back was also from the previous owners :) Enjoy!

For now, we are leaving the pictures from the front of the house off of the blog as it shows our address and what not. What are your ideas and suggestions for the house? Thank you for stopping by!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

home sweet home.

I remember when Blake and I decided we were going to buy a house.  We had no idea how long the process would take, what our home would look like, the exact street it would be on or anything of that nature.  It was a journey and an exciting one at that.  We both knew buying a house was in our future but honestly didn’t think we would be able to do so this soon into our marriage.  It was a tough decision for us because Blake and I have so many goals for our future together (majority of these goals involve making investments and taking risk.)  Finally we decided that having a home that was truly “ours” was the top priority on our list and we never looked back.  We spent countless hours on the internet looking at numbers, pictures, sharing links and laughing at our not-so-favorite ones.  I remember one day we stocked up on snacks and literally spent hours driving up and down every.single.street in the neighborhood. Some people might see that as a torturous event but we loved every minute of it (literally singing and dancing the entire time, true story.) There were a few houses we came very close to purchasing. When these didn’t pan out the way we had wished, I kept telling myself, “everything happens for a reason, everything happens for a reason.” Sure enough, this proved to be true.

One day I was looking online and found a too-good-to-be-true house that just went on the market that afternoon.  Blake and I instantly contacted our agent and saw it about two hours later.  The owners had just left the country that morning and already had an offer from us while they were still in the air traveling. Needless to say, we wanted that house and didn’t want to waste any time.  Due to our experiences with the past few houses, we knew if we wanted it, we had to jump on it FAST.  Now we are the proud owners of a home and couldn’t be more thrilled with our decision.  Both Blake and I have mentioned multiple times that this entire experience and end result will not truly sink in until we move in or have some real hands on time at the house. 

Luckily, there isn’t much we want to change about the house, for now.  For the most part, it’s ready for move-in and we can make the big changes later.  The only thing we wanted to change before we bring in our furniture is the bathroom.  It’s a fantastic bathroom and very well done-just not our preferred paint color and overall style.  Considering my husband is an architect, he was all over this little project.  As soon as we decided to renovate the bathroom, Blake was in contact with all of his favorite contractors.  He has agreed to demo the entire bathroom and they will come in and install the new tile, vanity, etc.  I’m sure Blake will eventually do a post on his project since it’s been quite a learning experience.  I feel so bad for him because he’s working full time and coming over to the house performing manual labor into all hours of the night.  I’m quite impressed with this handy man I married! I knew he was passionate about architecture but I had no idea how great he would be with the actual hands on work. You should see this bathroom now (Blake will post more detailed pics.) He has gutted it completely and has done a fantastic job!  My mom is all about home projects and said I married “her dream” yesterday ha!! My dad wasn’t impressed by that little statement.

Due to the bathroom project, we have been going back and forth between our apartment and house.  A few nights ago we brought over our lawn chairs, beer and dinner and just sat in the middle of our empty house.  It was absolutely hilarious yet a true “moment” at the same time.  I know we will always remember that night and how we felt.  However, I still don’t think the true reality had set in quite yet. Today, it did.  

Blake suggested we go to the house to water the plants and put more time into the bathroom.  As soon as we got there we both went out to the front yard.  I was watering the plants while Blake was in the grass with a saw in one hand and some tree branches in the other.  We locked eyes and, in this moment, it sank in.  We own this home together. 

As I type this now, I am sitting in my lawn chair, with my laptop on my lap, in the middle of an empty living room, hearing my husband ripping the toilet out of the bathroom. I cannot help but grin from ear to ear.  I feel so happy. So blessed. So in love.  
Above is a picture of the tub/bathroom before Blake got started.

Note: Yes, I'm aware of the crazy freckle patches I have going on. This seems to happen every summer. Anyone else have odd patches of freckles?

No, we do not have any children :) The swing is from the previous owners and will be perfect for our lil niece when she comes to visit.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

coffee shop anecdotes.

28 years of love and sacrifice from others have brought the two of us to this point. Life will always have it’s ups and downs, but we now have each other and are more than confident to take on anything together. The creation of this blog sprang from an idea of an honest and humble look into our likes, love, and journey. Not only does this provide us a snapshot of our own road traveled, but hopefully it can also prove insightful, motivational, or just entertaining to others. For anyone willing to follow a blog without a focus, we will always be accepting to ideas, questions, and feedback on content. Thanks in advance if you take the time to sneak a peak at what makes us Mere and Blake as we give you updates from the coffee shop, home, or the road.