Archives For Emily

When we bought our first fixer-upper, we had no idea that we’d be selling it only 3.5 years later.  Alex and I both envisioned Kennedy going to elementary school while still in this house and even middle school.  She didn’t even make it to preschool!

When Suwanee real estate started taking off we began serious talks about what we thought we could sell the house for.  We decided to do one more renovation before selling in order to maximize our profit potential —  we added a closet to the finished space in the attic making it a 4th bedroom, then finished an unfinished, doored-off space in the attic making it a 5th bedroom.  We went from a 3 bedroom house to a 5 bedroom house in a matter of 2 weeks and it paid off.

I realize I left our guest bathroom hanging in limbo when I stopped blogging and there were other rooms I never really even talked about, so I thought I’d share what our house looked like just before we moved for those who read this blog that aren’t my friends and family.  I forget that there’s a handful of y’all out there 😉

So, here you go!


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LIVING ROOM – we forgot to move the baby gate from the fireplace.  oops!  and the only reason our gallery wall isn’t up is because we wanted to “de-personalize the space” for potential buyers.  That dingy picture, hung too high I might add, just looked puny and sad up there above the couch.  I was embarrassed to leave it like that for showings but we just didn’t have anymore time, energy, or money to do anything about it. Obviously it didn’t really matter.  
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HALF BATH – this room was the first room I did any updating to whatsoever, and it was the room I did the least to.  Nothing changed except for paint, beadboard wallpaper, and crown moulding.  Obviously I would’ve loved to do more there eventually, but hey…we moved:)


ALEX’S OFFICE –  this is technically the dining room, but we used it as an office since the table in our kitchen could seat 10 if we needed it to.


LAUNDRY ROOM / PANTRY – I was actually kind of sad that I never got around to finishing this space.  I planned on adding full walls of subway tile with contrasting grout like in the kitchen, paining the cabinets and adding a countertop above the washer and dryer.  It would’ve looked so good!!!  Maybe I should tell the new home owners my plans for their space.  haha.  


SCREENED PORCH – another unfinished space, but it was functionally wonderful as it was.

FOYER – I can’t believe I waited so long to paint the stairs and railing.  It looks so much better than before!  I enjoyed my DIY runner while it lasted, but you get what you pay for.  They wore down over time and began to get loose and dangerous to walk on, and I was just sick of re-stapling all of the time.  Once I removed the runner and painted the risers I was thrilled with the outcome.  I only got to enjoy it looking like that for 2-3 weeks though.  Bannisters are a PAIN to paint!  I would be perfectly fine to never paint a single one ever again. 

MASTER BEDROOM – I did NOTHING to this room except a neutral coat of paint when we first moved in.  In our new house I hope to focus on our master bedroom sooner than later to make our bedroom an oasis for us to retreat to. lb7831b45-m10o

MASTER BATHROOM – dang, that was one awesome bathroom.  She’s missed.  Hands down my favorite renovation of that house!


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KENNEDY’S NURSERY – I was never settled with this room either.  Do you sense a theme of my lack of contentment?  This room needed large art above the crib to break up the busy-ness of the stencil, and the print above the lamp…it’s high because there was a nail there and I just threw it up there one day and never bothered to hang it properly. Lazy much, Emily?!  When this room was featured on Apartment Therapy the comments were polarizing — it was great love or great loathe.  It didn’t bother me too much, though, because I’m aware it’s not a style for everyone.  It was fun to be recognized regardless.   lb7831b45-m16o

GUEST BEDROOM – yet another untouched room.  We painted until we ran out of paint…yes, that means there’s one wall that needs a 2nd coat and I never got around to it.  Sorry new homeowners! We also repaired the ceiling where someone before us must have stepped through the ceiling from the attic.  Other than that, it just housed our old bedroom set and was functional as a guest bedroom for when family came into town.  lb7831b45-m17o

GUEST BATHROOM – I wish I had better pictures of this bathroom!  It was a less expensive update but made it look much more expensive than the dated bathroom that was there before. Then vanity just got a coat of paint and new hardware, the countertop stayed but adding a new faucet made an enormous difference.  There’s a really cute and eclectic vanity light that you can’t see in the picture (sorry! blame Alex-jk jk), new super cheap tile floors, a new tub and tile to the ceiling.  I wish I had better pictures! lb7831b45-m18o lb7831b45-m19o

ATTIC – aka bedrooms 4 & 5.  The paneled area was what was finished when we moved in.  I couldn’t paint the paneling because it was laminate and the chances of it bowing were too much of a risk when we were looking to update for selling purposes only. New carpet and a closet made this space functional as a bedroom. 
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ATTIC BEDROOM #2 – this space was completely unfinished.  I kid you not when I say that I didn’t realize this space was even up there!  There’s a door at the top of the stairs that leads to this room and I’d only opened it once or twice, and for some reason my memory told me it was just a closet-sized space.  But no…this was a great size room and will be such a cute bedroom for a teen or guest bedroom, or perhaps an office?  I don’t know what the new homeowners plan to do with this space, but it was fun to see it go from nothing to something, adding a full 3rd floor to our house.  lb7831b45-m22o

Well that’s all there is to the house.  We put a lot of love, blood, sweat, and tears into that house making it the perfect home for us, and I sincerely hope the new homeowners are enjoying it as their first home.

I’m hoping that for Christmas I will get a beautiful water color painting of the house to hang in our new house.   This etsy artist does such a great job!  (Oh no!!!!  Her shop is temporarily closed.  Hopefully she’ll open again!)  Here’s one of her pieces:


Or here’s another etsy shop that does them, and with really affordable prices too!


Well, that’s it.  My official farewell to home #1.  You will always be cherished.  Here’s to moving on to home #2 and creating new memories!

Renovation Update

August 9, 2015 — 5 Comments

We’re supposedly 5 days away from renovations being complete!!  I am so ready to see a finished product and move in!  Actually, I’m dreading the move, because who enjoys packing and unpacking?  But still, it will be nice to start settling in to our new normal.  The past few months at my mom’s house has been invaluable and we’re beyond grateful for her generosity and hospitality, but I know that she’s ready to have some personal space again and we’re ready for our own space again as well.  What I’m MOST ready for is to have Cohen in his own room!  Kennedy was in her nursery at 7 weeks, and Cohen is 2.5 months old.  It’s time.

I’ve been trying to find the perfect color for our cabinets and it was harder than I thought.  The kitchen is open to the rest of the house, so if I screw up the color then I’m stuck looking at it pretty much all the time.  And it would just suck to not like such an expensive upgrade.  I’ve had an inspiration picture from pinterest in my head–the cabinets appear to be gray with a lot of blue and green undertones.  After talking to the paint mixer at Sherwin Williams, she came up with this color and it’s spot on.  Thank you paint master!


Here’s the kitchen prepped for priming the walls and ceiling. How wonderful is it that I don’t have to live in this house while all this is going on?!  Thank you Mom!!!


I put this picture on Instagram.  It’s a bookshef at the end of the cabinets that separate the kitchen from the living room.  I walked in one day and something didn’t look right to me.  I realized that I wanted more length to the cabinets, so after talking with my contractor I decided this would be the most cost-effective way to get the look I wanted.  I’m sure the shelves may sit empty at times because of having a toddler running around, but hopefully it will house my cookbooks at some point soon.


Here’s the hood/vent cabinet.


These are the french doors I got off of Craigslist.  I can’t get over how good they look compared to what was there before! They’re raw wood right now and they’ll stay that way for a while until I really figure out what I want the space to look like.  Honestly, though, I think I like the look of the raw wood.  We’ll see what happens as we get our furniture in there and get a feel for the space.





The sunroom is about ready for the screens to be installed.  Until then it’s construction zone central.


Below is our new soaking tub.  I love the slender outside edges of the tub and that it’s more of a rectangle shape rather than oval.  There’s nothing wrong with oval, this is just my preference.  It feels more sleek to me.  The faucet will be mounted in front of the window on the deck, which will be tiled with carrara marble subway tiles.


Another peek at the floors.  I love them!


This time next week I might be back with complete “after” pictures.  How exciting!!!


You guys– I wrote an entire post last night and somehow deleted it.  I blame Google drive for automatically saving every 2 seconds. I’ve forgotten the need to manually save on WordPress!

Anyways, we were under contract on this house 7 days after Cohen was born.  I don’t particularly advise buying a new house when you’re only one week postpartum, because…hormones.  Cohen’s two months old now, we closed two weeks ago, and all is well.  The absolute best part of this whole renovation is that it is getting done while we AREN’T living there!  No dust, early morning visitors, or loud tools to live with for 3-4 weeks.

Here are some pictures as the house looked at the time of closing and some ideas of what we’ll be doing in the space:


The living room. The staging of the plaid couch in front of the window/door to the sunroom is on fleek.  Yeah, I said it.  And I’ll never say it again.  Hashtag (imagine me doing the Jimmy Fallon hashtag symbol with my fingers) too old for hipster lingo.  Other than that, the room is a great space with vaulted ceilings.  It’s right off the kitchen and the sunroom is behind it as you can see.  Notice the busy-ness of the sunroom windows…there are just a lot of grilles going on between the windows of the living room and the storm windows of the sunroom.  It kind of makes your eyes dizzy instead of being easy on the eyes.  I’ll talk more about the sunroom later.


Master Bath. It is what it is. I don’t love the layout, but it’s not going to change…because $$$.  But with a new tub, some paint, new tile, new countertops and some trimming out of the mirror I think it’ll look great.  I hope it will at least!


Master Bedroom.  So, we have a fireplace in the bedroom.  I THINK I’m going to like that.  No plans for this space just yet other than taking down the pink “curtain”.


Sunroom. Here’s the sunroom I was talking about earlier.  Lots of storm windows, green carpet, and 3 different entry points from the inside of the house alone.  That’s 4 doors to this small space.  I’m not really sure why that was necessary, but it is what it is.  My original plan was to knock out the ceiling and vault it because the ceiling already is vaulted above.  UNFORTUNATELY, it ended up being a bigger structural deal than we originally thought, to the tune of $4200, so we opted out of that and are just screening in the porch instead with a post for every 2 of the current windows so there’s a lot less busy-ness going on.



The Kitchen.  A galley kitchen in the middle of the house. It’s not my ideal layout for the space, but once again, it is what it is and I have to make the best out of it without too drastic of a change (meaning appliances stay where they currently are).  We’re opening up the space to the living room a bit and lengthening the bottom countertop to add more division to the space as well as some counter seating.  Cabinets will be taken to the ceiling and painted.  Recessed lighting, backsplash, yada yada yada.  I love kitchen remodeling.  It’s hands-down my favorite room to design.  Again, I HOPE it turns out like I have it pictured in my head!


The other rooms aren’t much to see right now and won’t be needing any work anyways.  When I get the time to paint and decorate those rooms I’ll share then, but for now it’s just the fun renovation stuff I’m sharing.

Here are a few pictures from yesterday to show you some of the progress in the different spaces:



New french doors.  They look so good compared to what was in there!  It was previously a fixed window and a door next to it.  The functional french doors really make it look so much better.  My contractor budgeted $1200 for the doors, but I got these for $300 off of craigslist.  What a steal!  They were the floor model from Home Depot and were in great shape other than a scratch on the exterior side.  I can live with that!



The hood/vent cabinet looks funny to me so I’m meeting with my contractor Monday to have it changed up a bit.  It just needs a wider base and different trim.


Master Bath shower.  Gotta love some subway tile!

Welp, Kennedy is up from her 45 minute nap.  She’s a year and a half old and thinks that’s a sufficient daily nap. I strongly disagree with her.

‘Til next time!