Three Years

Sometimes it’s hard to believe we have lived in this house for three years.  I hoped to get this post done last week, but going to Minnesota and being sick knocked me off my game.  Let’s take a walk down memory lane to see how this house looked when we started and where we’re at now.  We’re not completely finished, but most rooms are getting there.  At least the structure, furniture is a different story.  One that I might never be done with.  The entry isn’t large, but the dark door, red curtains, and dingy wall color didn’t do the space any favors.  Or scream “Welcome!”

New-House-Entry April 13 2012

After adding a white tongue and groove accent wall, a new glass door, and light gray paint, we’re almost done.  To call it finished, we’ll replace the railings for something less, um, orange and ornate.


From the stairs, the living room is just off to the side.  Orange-y tan and maroon walls were much too dark for our liking.


Brightening the room was as simple as a coat of paint and bold grass-green curtains.  Of course it helps that I’ve learned a little more about my camera since then.  Though that has a long, long way to go, too.


Oye, that red accent wall drove me insane.

New-House-Dining-into-Living-Room April 13 2012

As much as this room has changed, there’s still some work to finish up.  Crown, doors and perhaps a new coat of paint on the entertainment center.


The search for the perfect rug hasn’t been easy.


Most of the windows were original to the house, except the gridded two in the main space.  Despite being newer, the bay window sagged and the door was too tall for these ceilings.


While replacing windows, we also swapped the door for a window and vice versa.


The kitchen is the biggest change to date.  Starting with broken and dated oak cabinets, small beige floor tile, and blue wall paper wasn’t our favorite look.


Going away from the darkness, we added white perimeter cabinets, a white planked ceiling, and a wall of marble tile.


Before, the pantry cabinets on the other side of the island were poorly placed and ate up a lot of real estate.

Because we love open floor plans, especially when entertaining, we opened the wall separating the kitchen from the dining room.


Next to the kitchen is my little office nook.


Turning the seating area to face the window makes the office feel so much larger.  Working facing a wall isn’t nearly as nice as looking out a window.


An open fireplace in the family room was a danger, with a dirty moss rock surround that swallowed the room.


Eventually I’d love to get a more cushy pair of chairs and a slightly smaller sofa.



The main bathroom wasn’t functional for our family with young kids to splash around in the clawfoot tub.

New-House-Main-Bathroom April 13 2012

Replacing the tub with a tub/shower combo works far better for our family.

A large wooden vanity didn’t offer much storage, but took up a lot of floor space.

Adding a shelf stack and open vanity uses the same footprint, but boasts a load of storage.

Our Humble Abode Blog Main Bathroom Vanity

As with many 70’s homes, there was plenty of dark oak, including a floor to ceiling bookcase in the guest room.

To accommodate a bed and dresser, we cut out the center of the shelves to create a surrounded bed nook.

The boys’ room was a blank canvas with beige walls, popcorn ceiling, and two windows.

A little ceiling scraping and paint really upped the fun factor for our two young kiddos.


Our bedroom had electric blue walls, two of which were wall papered and painted over.


After more popcorn removal and scraping layers of wall paper off, we painted the room nearly black.  Adding a door lets in even more light, and once the deck is built, we’ll have our own little getaway.  Ignore the unfinished bed frame.  I’m still figuring out what I want.


More blood-red walls in the master bath.  Paired with the oak cabinets and yellow tile it felt very fast food restaurant-y.

After a full gut remodel we have a modernized space perfect for relaxing.


Though many people questioned our decision to remove a sink to gain a full bath with clawfoot tub, we moved ahead.

I have to say, best decision ever.  Especially because I’ve always wanted a clawfoot tub.  After a long day of projects and kids, it’s the best place to unwind in the evening.

As always, our house is a revolving door of projects and construction.  Looking back at the beginning makes me even more excited with the progress and all the time we spend updating this house.

Want to see more change?  Check out past tours: last year and two years ago.  Crazy how things change.

24 thoughts on “Three Years

  1. Three years seems impossible to me, too. Where has all that time gone?? The house has changed so much and so much for the better. I’d say you all have done a fabulous job and you should feel very proud of all that you’ve accomplished!

  2. Congratulations. You’ve done a tremendous amount of work in three years, especially when you consider the changes outside, too.

  3. Wow. . .I know you have worked hard! I can’t wait to see what you do with the pool room.You have added so much value to this home!

  4. Absolutely incredible. Is the claw foot tub in your master bath from the second bathroom? Also, do you have a blog detailing the project of going from two sink to one sink in the master bath? We were thinking about a similar change down the road.

    1. Hi Domesticphilosophy!

      Yep, it’s the same tub. It may not have worked in the main bath, but it’s great here. I don’t have a post specifically about the sink situation, but it was a pretty easy switch. The plumbing came up from the floor, so we just used the lines and drain for the tub. 🙂


  5. Beautiful! The only thing I don’t get is the island. Is it done? I would make all of it walnut or maybe remove the upper bar part it just looks unfinished.

  6. I absolutely love your home and agree with the others- what a transformation! And wow, such great light in your home. I was thinking of what my favorite change is, and I think it would have to be the front doors/window. It makes such a difference that you actually used the large dead space above the doors with a window and it feels intentional, which is so nice! Anyway, congrats on three years!

    1. Hi Ashley!

      The lighting is really great. It’s something I fell in love with when we bought this house. And the new doors and window totally change the space, don’t they?


  7. Really beautiful! I love how you’ve used the natural light in your home and chosen colors and textures to highlight it. Congratulations! Here’s to more wonderful years!

  8. Wow that is a lot of work. Congrats! Everything looks great. I do agree about a previous comment about the island though…I keep waiting for you to “finish” it somehow…don’t know if you feel the same way…I remember you mentioning there is more to do but can’t remember what it is… I’m also wondering if you guys have to pull permits for any of this work…in our town we’re supposed to pull one simply for replacing a toilet LOL. If so, it makes your 3 year timeline even more impressive!

    1. Hi Mary!

      There are a few small changes, and I’m still deciding on a finish for the bar top, so we’ll see.

      As for permits, most of our changes are cosmetic, so they don’t need a permit. Replacing toilets doesn’t, but changing plumbing does.


  9. My favorite spaces are the entry, your master bedroom (although I gotta admit I don’t get the chairs being at the end of the bed?), and both bathrooms (they both look VERY expensive, but we know its DIY, so that’s impressive!). The pool house reno is going to be exciting to watch. Congrats on 3 years!

    1. Hello Lauren!

      Ha, the chairs in the master bedroom are temporary. Once we’re done with the pool house, they’ll go around a glass topped table. Rather than storing these in the basement, they’re living in the bedroom until we’re ready. I’m chomping at the bit to start on the pool house. We’ll see when that gets going. 🙂


  10. You didn’t mention all of the work you did outside with the siding, deck, landscaping, etc… We bought materials to build a new set of porch steps. We’ll see how long they sit in the garage before they actually get used 😉

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