Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Curb Appeal: Before and After

Every day is a journey, and the journey itself is home. ~Matsuo Basho

Does this look like a house you could fall in love with? Even before stepping a foot inside?

Well, that's how I felt when I laid eyes on this little gem in May 2005.

It's hard to believe that just five months before that day, Hubby and I were living in our custom built three bedroom ranch in the "northend". Northend- Our version of Weezy and George Jefferson's east-end, deluxe apartment in the sky".

Ten years ago, when we began construction on our house, it was a dream come true. The perfect house with the perfect location; country life within five minutes of city convenience. We were surrounded by privacy, a large pond, mature evergreens and acre upon acre of open field full of deer, rabbits and other wildlife. Does it get any better than this?

Absolutely NOT! The day after we moved into our newly built house, construction began.


Yes, the day after we moved into our new house, construction began on a multi-unit, subsidized- income apartment complex....just three feet off our property line. And just beyond the housing complex, they were adding a four lane state route addition. Oh yes!

We called that home for four years, and once the last of our "original" neighbors decided to move, we opted to do likewise. Lucky for us, our house sold within hours of listing it with our realtor.

We swiftly purchased five acres in a planned community with lots of rules and regulations to protect our investment. However, life had other plans....you'll have to keep coming back to hear that story.

Let's get back to May 2005, as my sister and I took a stroll around the neighborhood (we were temporarily living at my MIL's), I saw this house and immediately recognized the potential in it.

This was MY house; the place my SOUL longed for. The place I wanted to teach my kids how to ride their bicycles. So, after a couple tours and a competitive bidding process, we were finally able to call it ours.

And thus began a four year process of polishing this "diamond in the rough" into the gem I like to call home. All the projects (i.e. board and batten shutters, window box, landscape, pergola deck and repainted foundation) were completed by my personal Handy Andy and his protoge, moi. Here's another shot of the BEFORE:

And now, what you've been waiting for, the AFTER:

Thanks for stopping by! Check out the links below for more great ideas...

Sincerely, Lisa

Tales from Bloggeritaville: Thrifty Thursdays

The Shabby Chic Cottage

Funky Junk's Saturday Nite Special


  1. It looks great, what a beautiful home! I love the window box, such a cute detail.

  2. I LOVE it!! It looks beautiful and I can see the deck on the right. I bet you spend a lot of time out there. You and your husband did a fantastic job and you have a beautiful home.

  3. Thanks ladies and you're right Jane, we spend alot of time outside during the summer.

  4. Love this house and love this story!! Thanks so much for sharing!!!
    Mama Holli

  5. Thanks for sharing this special story. Your home is gorgeous! Glad it brings you so much pleasure.
    Best wishes, Natasha.

  6. It is so cute! I love it. I also can't wait to hear the rest of your story.

  7. I LOVE your charming home!! It reminds me of this sweet little house in my town that is right across the street from our little library. When my husband and I drive by it, we always say that it is the house we are going to buy when we retire and that we'll sit on the porch with our kitties and drink iced tea and lemonade and read our library books all afternoon long. Pure Bliss!! Thanks for sharing!!

    Nice to meet you...stop by if you get a chance.

  8. Wonderful before and after! Great job and the thanks for sharing the story. Is that a pergola off to the side? Gorgeous!:)

  9. You are my kind of person! I love the way you write, fall in love with a house that needs love and the way you decorate :)

    I will be back!


    PS. More pictures of the pergola, please!!

  10. Wow what a transformation! Beautiful. I just started blogging to. Would love for you to stop by and -we could follow each others blog if you like!

  11. Thanks for your listening and leaving great comments. Please come back, I plan on showing the pergola deck next week...it was also a DIY project:)

  12. Oh, I love to hear stories like yours! Your place is just adorable and I look forward to seeing more!

  13. Can I feature your before/after ?????


  14. Twice Remembered, thanks for your comments and becoming a follower. I love reading your blog...your kitchen is to die for!

    Beach Brights, Absolutely...what an honor!

  15. What a story! I hope that you're through dealing with stressful home issues!!

    As for the house- I love what you did with it. I'm a total sucker for a front porch ;).

  16. I love the front porch. One of our must haves when buying a house is a front porch. I'm having a giveaway this week if you'd like to stop by.

  17. @Cheap Chic Home. This is so inviting now. You really have a nice, loving touch.

  18. Oh Kasey, please come back to hear the rest of the story.

    You know Leanne, I didn't appreciate the front porch until we got the rocking chairs, now it's my favorite place!

    Thanks Kim for the kind words and stopping by!

  19. Beautiful. It is amazing the talent we have in ourselves to make a mere house a home.
    Congrats on finding your "home".

  20. Great job, you can tell you put in a lot of hard work and it looks wonderful!

  21. Amazing. Truely. You've added just the right touches to make it so inviting! Those chairs beckon me right in! I adore front porches and miss mine from my last home very much.

    Thanks for linking up!

    FJ Donna

  22. All kinds of beautiful to be seen here! Can't wait to see more...

  23. This is beautiful!!! Love, LOVE the window box and deck!! Gorgeous!!!

    Lou Cinda :)

  24. Wonderful! So nice to hear about someone's dream coming true!

  25. Now I'm looking at the front of your house and oh my! How gorgeous! I can see why you fell in love with it. I love how you can see the deck from the front of the house. It really makes your house look bigger. Lovely!

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! My 4 year old has inherited a lot of these pieces from my 11 year old. We changed the 11 y/o to a more tween style (I'll post later.) So I've been collecting vintage pieces for 8 or more years. I'm not very patient when it comes to hunting down pieces but have to admit the best things are those which I've stumbled upon unintentionally. The jacks came from a craft show. I've seen some since but can't remember where. If I think of it, I'll email you. The plane came from Home Goods. Do you shop there? They usually have a great selection for kids' rooms, lots of vintage looking stuff. I posted a list at the bottom of the blog stating where most of the items came from. I don't shop antique stores much b/c they seem pricey. Most of my antique pieces came from anitque malls or estates where the pricing is a little bit more competitive. Hope that helps!