We bought our first house about a year and a half ago.
It’s nothing extraordinary – just a small split-level/bungalow – but from my very first glimpse of the house in pictures on www.mls.ca I was in love. We visited with our agent a couple days later and although the inside was outdated (to say the least) it had a lot of potential. The house was a fixer-upper from an aesthetic point of view – but structurally in very good shape. We didn’t have a lot of time to consider our decision, with 2 other offers being submitted that same day (& having just sold our condo), so we went for it – putting our own offer on the table and praying that it would be accepted...
Less than a month later we got the keys and the real work began. I still don’t know how we managed to accomplish so much in the couple of weeks from when we took possession to when we moved in... Layla was 18 months old and all over the place. I was just barely 3 months pregnant and still feeling pretty ill most of the time. It didn’t matter. We had renovations to do! Every evening after work, every moment of free time, we were at the house... cleaning, pulling up carpet, demolishing the kitchen, installing floor, painting, etc. Thank goodness we were smart enough to pay someone to lay the ceramics and install the new kitchen cupboards!
In those first weeks we managed to 1- Refinish the wood floor that was hiding under the ugly carpets in the main living areas 2- install new laminate flooring in the “1st” basement (split level so we have 4 floors) 3- completely renovate the kitchen... demolition and installation 4- paint... the ceilings, the closets, the walls , the mouldings and trim...
the kitchen was drastically improved... for under 10K thank you!
The den was probably the next biggest transformation after the kitchen...
from dark and somber to bright and playful!
Once all of our main living area was looking half decent we took a break. A short break.
Over the Christmas holidays last year we started the long process of renovating our basement. Ripping out the existing walls and carpet, installing a sub-floor and dry wall; separating what will eventually be our “tv room” and Brandon’s “reptile room” (...Yes. We have a “reptile” room in our house. To be fair it’s more of a walk-in closet when it comes to its actual size. But still. What can I say? My husband has a degree in zoology and he happens to be fascinated with reptiles and in particular snakes. Yes. Snakes. And I refuse to be the wife who won’t “let” him... so yes... we have a reptile room in our house...). We finished the actual reptile room so that we could move all the critters in.
After our holiday blitz we took another break. Another short one.
Soon it was time to start thinking about Layla’s “big girl room” and preparing the nursery for the little one on the way. Although it was mostly a painting and decorating job – these things take time – even if the better part of the time is actually figuring out the decor side of things (and I’m sorry, but what pregnant woman has an easy time making these kinds of important decisions!?!?).
Layla's room (get rid of the carpet, a new coat of paint and WOW!)
Meaghan's room (it's amazing what a little paint will do!)
Once the girl’s rooms were finished we took another break. This break was a little longer. I was getting bigger and bigger. We knew it wouldn’t be easy to do renovations with a small baby.
It wasn’t a real break though... we simply shifted our focus to the “yard”!
...to be continued...