The house story, part 1

Sean and I always wanted to upgrade from our sweet little condo to a real, grown-up house. Three bedrooms, two bathrooms, a garage for the husband, a yard for the kids, and a walk-in closet for the wife. You know, the stuff dreams and sitcoms are made of. We’d been looking for years and knew exactly what we wanted and what we could potentially afford. His list was pretty simple: a yard, a garage, and a little privacy on the West side. My list was not as bad as you would think: single story (our condo had 87 stairs… never again), 3 bedrooms, lots of light, and needs work. The “needs work” part was essential, partly because we’re not millionaires and mostly because I am ridiculously picky and want to choose every single finish, color, and material that goes in my house. And Sean is really, really handy. That guy can build, fix, or rig anything. So it made sense.

In September of last year we finally found our little fixer upper. Three bedrooms, 2 bathrooms (um, this is a technicality since our master bathroom is like 9 sq ft), cute layout, on 1/3 of an acre just down the street from the lake. With lots of help from family, we became the proud owners of a little slice of Atascadero. It was a very fine day. And our condo was in escrow, so we had time to do some renovations while not living through renovations. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Ha. Ha ha.

Here’s our little gem of a house the day we closed:




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Very professional photos, am I right? Wish I knew someone who had a fancy camera…

Also, I NEVER took a family photo of us in front of our new place. I kept forgetting! This makes me so sad. But I would probably look back at the photo and think, “What are you suckers smiling about? There’s MOLD in there!”

We were pretty excited about cleaning the place up, and we wrote a little list of potential updates to be made before we moved in:

  • Scrape the acoustic ceilings
  • Replace outlets and covers
  • Replace toilets
  • Replace carpet with new carpet/laminate?
  • Replace baseboards and door trim?
  • Remove wall(s) in entryway?
  • Raise ceiling in hallway?
  • Paint interior?

There are so many question marks on that list because I was dreaming and Sean was calculating. He wanted to move right in with pink walls and brown carpet and slowly update one room at a time. But I was like, “Now! We have to do it NOW!” Well, if you give a mouse a cookie, she’ll destroy the whole house. But let me explain myself.

We were for sure scraping the ceilings. And once the new texture was put on, it needed to be painted, so why not just paint the walls while you’re at it? Seems obvious. And if we’re painting, we may as well not worry about the carpet because it’s scary and scratchy and 40 years old. And if you replace the carpet, you have to remove baseboards and who really wants to put back the 2 inch wooden baseboards from the 70’s? And if we have to get new floors, we better make sure we have the layout we want because it’s not easy to go back and add strips of flooring….

So you see how it’s like a rabbit hole; a deep, dark, never-ending rabbit hole? Poor Sean. We bit off more than we could chew but it was going to be ok. We had 2 months before we had to be out of our condo, so nights and weekends could be spent working on the new house while we slept in the clean comforts of home. And it was fine. It really was fine. Until it wasn’t.

And I’ll tell you all about it Monday, or possibly Tuesday. Wednesday if this baby decides to be born this weekend. Fingers crossed. Have a nice day, you guys! And if you’re free on Saturday, please come over and help us install our cabinets!


One thought on “The house story, part 1

  1. jackievernon says:

    I can see so much potential in your house! It’s great you guys are gone owners. That’s a goal we have down the road (hopefully sooner than later). I know it’s so hard to not want everything ready NOW but all the stress will be so worth it in the end. Can’t wait to read more. 🙂

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