My New Favorite Room in the House
I’m back and I have a whole lot of home changes to share but they will have to be divided into separate posts to give you the full impact(read- I want you to be even more impressed with my painstaking accomplishments)!
The thing I have learned since we bought our first home two months ago is that the joy of buying a new home is that you get to buy new stuff….
…and the burden of buying a new home is that you get to buy new stuff.
Since moving into our home we have needed to buy a new fridge, roof, gas dryer, doorbell, and the list goes on. That’s not to say that I don’t love my new fridge(truth: I pet it sometimes when no one is looking) but still- the hemorrhaging of money has begun and I have no idea when it will stop.
Mark and I have started some home projects that I thought would be easy but turned out to be not-so-easy. I am learning that everything will cost more money and take more time that you think it will. Mark is learning that I have a very clear picture of what I like and what I want things to look like and our tastes don’t necessarily always “mesh”.
Still- I have been pleasantly surprised lately by what we have managed to agree on or compromise on. This has made things a lot more enjoyable and it’s fun to talk about what we will do with our home in the future together.
A room in our house that I never thought I wanted or needed was a dining room. This house didn’t technically come with a dining room but rather a sitting room off the kitchen.Let’s take a little trip down memory lane and look at what this space looked like in another life…
Man! That is the only photo I could rustle up as a “before” shot. I really need to get better about take photos before the transformation occurs!
See, this house had three, yes THREE, living spaces. A bit weird- I know. The area the last owners used as a dining room was part of the living room but where I currently have parked my home office.
This space just wouldn’t do for a place for my family to eat as I find it invaluable that I need to watch my kids eat from the kitchen(or smash food into each others hair as the case may be).
Thus- the first room you see when you enter our new home has become our dining room and there is nothing formal about it. I worry that you can see it right away when you walk in the door and our kitchen table seems to be a catch-all for junk but maybe this will just be more incentive to keep things neat.
This week we hired some professional painters due to a fantastic Angie’s List deal. $199 for 7 hours of professional painting. Yes please! Especially since neither Mark nor I wanted to attempt to paint the man cave in all it’s high-ceiling-ed and expansive glory. Leave it to the pros I say. We decided to buy enough paint for the man cave and the dining room since they would be the same color gray which Young House Love turned me onto. The painters were able to finish the man cave(which I will be revealing in another post) and part of the dining room but I was left to finish it which I have been working on the last few days. So here is the new hotness(sorry for the different angle- this is shot from the perspective of when you first walk in the front door):
Twenty points for anyone who recognized that these are the build-ins that used to flank our fireplace in our old house!
I found them a couple of years back for free on craigslist and after considerable sanding and painting they became our entertainment center in our old house. We *almost* left them behind for the new tenets. We even offered our landlord the option to buy them and keep them as part of the house since they fit so perfectly. He declined though and thank goodness he did because I never could have imagined they would find such a great place in our new house! They even stayed out in our side yard for over a month after we moved in because I couldn’t figure out what to do with them! I can’t believe I almost gave these babies away! I love all the extra storage and decoration they give the room. Plus they “fill” the space if you know what I mean. Since this room was never really meant to be a dining room it was just a bit too spacious for our little table with nothing else in the room. This makes the space feel right.
Plus, you can’t beat the open shelving for me to put all my pretty dishes on. I’m an addict. I know. Don’t hate.
Something else you might have noticed is the death of the ugly natural wood baseboards! I have wanted to paint them since the day we bought the house, but the hubs took some convincing. Not to worry- my feminine wiles worked and the baseboards are now a crisp white as they should be. Can I get an amen?
I love how much more clean and modern this room feels now. Isn’t it amazing what a fresh coat of paint can do?! I still have a long list of things to do but I am ready to make those changes slowly. For those wondering, here is my to do list for this space:
-buy or make curtains for the two small windows. Something light but with some color and pattern would be nice.
-new light fixture to replace that crazy outdated chandelier. I already have something in the works since my b-day is coming up in a couple of weeks and the hubs has given me permission to pick a fixture as a gift to myself so hopefully I will have that update to share soon! I’m thinking of getting something large and eye-catching and in the farmhouse/rustic neighborhood. Thoughts?
-paint the bench black to match the rest of the chairs and table. Don’t know if any of you can see it peering out from under the table there but it’s white and it needs to be black…like yesterday.
-I would really love to do a board and batten treatment to the wall here since that just screams dining room to me and I also love board and batten. The hubs is nay-saying this idea so we will see if my feminine wiles will work in this instance.
-Hang photos on the big empty wall. You can’t see it in the photos but the wall opposite the build-ins is embarrassingly blank. No matter- I already have the perfect black and white photo of my kids in mind to hang there. Though I did already hang my yearly photo collage and I think this is the perfect spot for it.
So that’s it! I am sure this room will progress slowly but that’s part of the fun of having a home forever- the way it grows!