Thursday, July 26, 2007

Home Makeover

Back when DH and I were house hunting, we were a little shocked at some of the things we saw during realtor open houses. Beyond the homes that seemed to have no discernible foundation left underneath them (never good, but especially not in earthquake country) there were the crazy colors and a generally outdated look to most of the properties in our price range that had enough space for a growing family. I always wondered why people couldn't slap a little new paint on a completely flaky fence or remove some other obvious eyesore. Now, however, I know why things like that happen. Sometimes if you look at something long enough, you simply stop seeing it.

Case in point: my windows and doors. When we bought our house we knew the single-pane, aluminum frame windows that had seen better days. We also commented that the front door looked a wee bit ghetto with its rusty security screen. But in terms of priorities, fixing those things fell far down the list. First we had to do up a nursery for Big A, then we had to redo the floors in the office and kitchen, then we had to get new kitchen counters and wiring, redo some plumbing, etc. Life got so busy with pregnancies and babies and new jobs, too, that we only just got around to working on the windows and doors. But now that the shiny new things are in, I can't believe how shitty the old stuff looked! The before pictures kind of shocked me:

Here's before ....... and after.

Likewise, the kitchen renovations that dragged on and on and drove me insane during Little A's pregnancy have made an enormous difference:

Before (note view-blocking cabinet) ......... After (it's gone)

Before ........................... And after
Of course, home improvement on an older property is like making a clean spot on a dirty face: the more you do, the more you feel compelled to do more. I still want to either build (or have built) a little L-shaped booth for the kitchen corner, because I think it would be lovely to sit right next to the window while drinking coffee and eating toast. Eventually I'd also like to scrape the popcorn texture off the living room ceiling. More pressing is the fact that the main bathroom is looking a ragged and dated with its bright pink tile, discolored grout, and banged-up tub. And don't get me started on the backyard -- too many projects out there to go into here. (Hint: stone stairs, new fence and hot tub -- oh my!)

But, those will have to wait for another day. Right now I'm feeling really satisfied about the new windows and door.

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