Hello dear readers!  I’m resurrecting my dormant blog because, dun dun dun, we are moving.  To a fixer upper, of course.  The new property is out of the city, on 2 acres with a view and two enormous garage/workshops for the Chief, a major selling point.  The house is slightly larger than our current place, with enough space for our family of four.  It is also in pristine exceedingly dated condition.  It was built in 1984 but feels like a mix of the 60’s through 80’s.

We’re working on a tight timeline and budget so I’ll be sharing just the broad strokes as we prepare it for move-in!  We’ll be updating the main living areas and hold off on the bedrooms and bathrooms for now.  There is so much bad wallpaper and vinyl flooring to rip out everywhere, I can’t wait.  Without further ado, the “before” pictures!

Because of parking, the side door is the main door.  It actually does go into an entryway, unlike the main door which opens straight into the living room.  This little porch light with bizzarely placed installation is par for the course for the interior as well.



The entry, below. There are cabinets along the right and two closets (coat and broom) on the left.  And an extra fridge…  and you can’t see it here but there’s a counter level pass through on the right, perhaps to shove your grocery bags through to the kitchen?



Moving forward is this large window, which we’re replacing with French doors for better access to the backyard.  You currently have to go around the house to get to it.  Hard to see, but to the left of the window is an office nook.



Here’s the office nook!  I want to rip it out and put in a reading nook instead.  The open doorway leads to the hall and the beds/baths.  You can see the previous owners were really into lots of storage.  Luckily this means I can rip half of it out and still have plenty.  Gotta love that upper cabinet hanging out all by itself!



So looking in the other direction is the open floor plan living/dining/kitchen area.  Two huge (12′ and 8′) windows are there for the view.  The column in the middle is structural, holding up the roof, and the kitchen island is right against it.  You can also see the not so attractive ducting space running along the peak of the vaulted ceiling.



The kitchen is basically hanging out there in the middle, and it really doesn’t work for me.  There’s not enough width around it to use furniture to divide the space better, so we’re putting up some partition walls around the kitchen to make it less open.  I’ll detail the plans for the kitchen in another post, but basically the fridge is moving to where the island is, the fridge corner is getting walls around it, and everything will be painted off-white.



So much orange and gold!  On the floor of the main area is a lovely pink and gray patterned vinyl.



The kitchen counters are dated linoleum but the pattern is not noticeable from just a few feet away and reads as a decent buttery creamy color.  Good, cause they’re staying. IMG_2445


The walls are all covered in grasscloth wallpaper, which is experiencing a trendy revival right now. Sadly, the peach color and waterstained spots on it make it only worthy of the dumpster.  Did I mention all the wallpaper we have to get off?  Not looking forward to that.



We have a problem with the windows, which I didn’t realize until we were in escrow (and it wasn’t a deal breaker).  All the south facing windows have a heavy amber tint on them.  You can really see it where the window is slid over and the glass is doubled up.  It makes me feel like I’m inside a cigarette – everything is all dingy and yellowed.  I thought initially it was just the paint and finishes, but it’s also the windows!  I desperately hope I can get the tint off myself with the help of Google, because I want to enjoy that California sunshine.



Next is the main bathroom, in the hallway.  I won’t be tackling this until after we’ve moved in but I think that with everything painted and a decent mirror, lights, tile, and towels it will be quite passable without much of a budget.



The girls’ bedroom –  not much to say here except thank goodness there’s no wallpaper! They will probably be living with it as is for quite a while.



The master bedroom.  Wallpaper.  Mismatched sconces.  A wall of windows!  Two closets.  And…


it even has its very own laundry room – slash – master bathroom.  Yup.  I don’t even know how we would change all this – it would be extremely expensive to rearrange the location of things due to all the plumbing.  The toilet is around behind the sink wall.  I’ll worry about it in 3-5 years!  Meanwhile I’ll just be glad there’s no wallpaper.



So there you have it, a badly lit introduction to our new house!  I hope you will follow along on this journey with us.  It promises to be a huge adventure/challenge.