Wednesday, May 30, 2012

{Hey Friends...Meet Our Home}

So a lot of people have been asking for updates and background stories on our lovely home! So here she is...our amazing first home! 

Alex and I bought this beauty July of 2010. Was it the home of our dreams at the time? No, but it was in the perfect part of town, had tons of space (more than we imagined we could afford), and had a pool! I was sold. There were lots of fall backs though. It wasn't exactly a "fixer-upper" but it was a huge, massive, "cleaner-upper"...and that is a bit of an understatement. The previous owner was a chain smoker, and the nicotine was EVERYWHERE! People, if you smoke...we can tell you some stories because it is incredible! Anyways...we have put tons of elbow grease into this home of ours! 

We have cleaned, scrubbed, primed, and painted EVERY wall, cabinet, and door in the house. Deep cleaned and steamed the carpet at least 20 times. We have gutted and redone one bathroom. And we have put countless hours of TLC into making this cleaner-upper the home of our dreams! And we're just a little in love with it now! So let's move onto the pictures...

The Entry

 Yes...this was our first look in this house. Charming right? This nicotine color was EVERYWHERE! The garage, living/dining, kitchen, hallway...we couldn't get away from it! I think they picked it so the nicotine stains would blend in...I'm not joking! So that color was first to go! 

This little house of ours is a bi-level...not our favorite home configuration, but we're totally getting used to it!! Just prepare yourself for that was orange...Bengals orange!

But here we are now! We picked a light gray for the entry/kitchen and we love it! 

That Wendel art is from Alex's sister Andrea. Those letters were made from objects around Alex's parents house...super special and awesome! 

And a little coat shelf, which we never ever use! Oh least it's pretty! But oh that's on our to-do list! 


Meet our kitchen before. Isn't it welcoming? The dark cream cabinets, the stained white tile, the lack of appliances...stunning right? 

After cleaning/ sanding/ painting the cabinets, taking out stained tiles, cleaning/priming/painting the walls, and deep cleaning the tile floor...we ended up with our lovely kitchen! 

We love the bright white cabinets, and our beautiful appliances! We had to pick a wall color that would work with the tile floor and the counter top, so that's how we came up with this blue/grey color that we adore! 

Wendel and I both love to cook, so we spend a lot of quality time in the kitchen (we make dinner together every night...cute right?) It was very important to us that this space feel comfortable and open. Mission accomplished! 

 Dining Room

Oh the dining room! So the previous owners had a bit of a thing for mirrors. I get that they "make a room feel larger" but this room is already huge! No need to make it feel any bigger. Plus it is weird to see yourself from so many angles! (Oh and notice me with all of my cleaning supplies? This was the day that we got the keys...Alex was at work and I bolted over there to start the cleaning process!) 

This was post-mirrors. Thank goodness from my brother-in-law who came and smoothed out these walls so we could paint over top of them!! 

And here she is after cleaning/priming/painting the walls and steaming the carpet. We know, the color is a tad dark, but we were so eager to get everything painted, we just went for it! 

Here we are with furniture.We adore our dining furniture that we took off of my sister's hands! It gets used a lot, so we're very thankful for it! 

This buffet is filled every Sunday with delicious goodies!! I just love it! Oh and can you tell it was Valentines Day when I took these pictures...sweethearts...mmm!

I love this printable! Thanks to eighteen 25 blog (one of my favorites) it's a free printable! They also have tons of free printable for holidays! Check out the link below!

Get the printable here

 Living Room

Ah the living room...that same nicotine color...uh! And I guess they had an entertainment center there so they didn't finish painting that wall...strange. 

 After cleaning/priming/painting the walls and steaming the carpet. 

And here she is in all her entertainment glory! Hemnes...mmm....we love her! This beauty of an entertainment center is one of our favorite purchases! We highly recommend her! And yes, our home is pretty much an Ikea catalog...but's working for us right now! And the curtains were handmade by  my mom! That window is massive, and the curtains we looked at were so ridiculously expensive, so madre came to the rescue! She's amazing and we love them! They have a blackout lining in them, so we pretty much have a movie theater in our living room to watch movies! Amazing!  

Here is a shot of the living room and the dining room! It's a nice size and is plenty of room for our 15+ person family dinners!

Oh and here is a picture from to top of our stairs. The kitchen and dining room is to the right, and the living room is to the left. But look at this beautiful view pre-curtains. That pool and deck! Yes...we pinch ourselves often! 

Upstairs Bathroom

Yeah...where in the world do I start? This bathroom was horrendous! And yes, carpet in the bathroom, red stippled walls with wallpaper at the top....bad, bad, bad. We ended up deciding to gut this bathroom because we noticed there was mold around the tub because the wrong type of drywall was used. So my brother-in-law and his company Joseph E Clarke & Company  hooked us up big time!! 

So here it is after a new tub, toilet, vanity, tile...okay pretty much everything! Sorry I don't have any shots with all of the accessories...still working on this picture taking thing! 

Master Bedroom

Here they are again...the mirrors! I'm telling you...they loved them! All of the bedrooms were white...exciting right? They also had these horrible blinds in every room.  

And again, after steaming the carpet and cleaning/priming/painting the walls (okay...painting the walls twice...the first color turned out to look we went totally different and did a blue color) this puppy was ready for furniture! I think it's amazing how much bigger it looks! And again...curtains made by my madre! 

We got this piece of art work on our honeymoon...still not sold on it in that spot...but I sure do love having that piece in our home to remind us of that incredible trip! 

 And I just had to share this picture. If you know me...then you know that is quite a statement! 


Our lovely little white office...gorgeous right?

And here we go after steaming the carpet and cleaning/priming/painting the and fabulous! How incredible is that blue color! Beautiful! 

And here are some horrible pictures of what it looks like now.  This is the room we probably need the most work in. But, more on that coming very soon :) 

Again...more Ikea to love it!

Guest Bedroom

Here we are before...white and boring! I don't think the previous owners liked color very much. But our guest bedroom has a bit of a story. Wendel is quite masculine in his decore likes and dislikes and said no pink or I went with the next girly color :) Yellow! So this room is now affectionately called The Yellow Room!  

I's bright...very bright! Would I pick this color again? Probably not...but it's fun for now! You literally don't need the light on in the room because that color does the work for you! But again, this is after steaming the carpet and cleaning/priming/painting the walls

This room is special to me too because all of the decore is from my apartment in Birmingham. This will change a lot in the future, because this will be our future child's room! And while I love this color...I will also pray that our child will sleep...and yellow is just not the color for that! 

And here we are. The dreaded...dreaded basement! Wood paneling, horrible carpet, Bengal orange! We didn't even touch this part of the house for almost 9 months! 

Yes, a bar...that needed a whole lot of work! This is actually after we ripped out some Christmas lights and plastic sheeting at the top of the bar. 

 Ha! The fireplace with a piece of wire casing falling down.'s horrendous! We know! 

Now after new carpet, cleaning/ priming/ and painting the wall, bar cabinets, and fireplace. 

It's a nice size basement! We have lots more to do down here, but it's on the way back burner. We actually don't spend a lot of time down here! That will change in due time! However, the kiddos love to come down here and roll all over this amazing carpet!!

And our fire place! That puppy was so dirty and gross. A couple coats of dark brown paint, and we love it! A lot of people probably wouldn't paint their brick fireplace...but we adore it! 

Downstairs Bathroom

Oh boy...there are no words for this space. I get that this was the pool bathroom, but it was horrendous! Carpet (again), barn siding, and that horrible nicotine color again!

Pretty decent for what we were working with right? After going through lots of options, we decided to wallpaper the walls. Alex's parents got in there and did an amazing job! We also got a new toilet and vanity and installed new tile. And yes, that's a caricature we had done at our wedding...spitting image right? 

The vanity, mirror, and lights. Couldn't get it without getting in the there I am! 


As I've mentioned, our house came with a pool! And a carpeted upper deck.

The pool was like this when we saw and bought it. Well when we got the cover off of it, we saw that it was we either were going to have a massive fire pit, or have to get a new pool...

We chose the pool! Look at that beauty! Wendel and his dad also build a deck on the top. It's stained now the same color as the rest of the deck! Pretty amazing right?

We love having a pool! It's a lot of work, but so worth it!


We bought our house and weren't really worried about the front, but we ended up doing a lot in the first year! We took out a lot of dead plants, took out that massive "who knows what" plant around the lamp post, painted the front door and shutters, and put a railing to make the porch actually feel like a front porch!

So our door used to be the color of the shutters...then I decided I wanted something super bright. Wendel humored me and said okay. The day of our accident ( read about that here) I went for it and painted the front door. As we were leaving for Applebees (shiver) we were saying "yeah...that door has to change!" It won't happen for a bit. I'm trying to find some inspiration for a new color...any suggestions? 

Now that you've seen our little home, we are going to be totally 100% transparent. There are lots of things that are going to be changing in the next year or so! Some because they need to (hello're going to a far, far away land very soon!), and some because we just aren't thrilled with our initial decisions. But that's for another post...keep your eyes out for a post next week with some of the changes that are coming in the future!!

We feel so blessed to have this incredible home as our first house! The house we came home to as Mr. and Mrs. Wendel. The home that our family has shared many Sunday dinners in. The home that holds our future childrens' bedrooms. And the home that I fall even more in love with that man of mine every single day (gag right?) Some people say we were really lucky to find this house...but there was no luck about this was a blessing!

So who else has things they're changing in their home? Any small, tiny DIY projects? Any huge, massive renovations? I'd love to hear what is going on in everyone else's homes!