However, the longer you live in a home the more the little things that you don't love about your house start to bug you. We have lots of little things in our house that we don't love. Slowly we have started prioritizing what we want to get done. Then we make a budget plan for how much we are willing or can spend in the year and we start tackling projects.
Our first year we spent about $1200 buying a new refrigerator to replace the one that was frozen shut upon the return from our honeymoon, and gutting and rebuilding our half bath after we discovered a leak in the faucet had caused mold to grow everywhere! EW.
Last year, 2010, we tackled several more projects. Spending several thousand dollars but saving way more by doing the projects ourselves.
Here is a recap of 2010:
The year started out with our yearly furniture purchase. Another tradition we started when we bought this house. One new piece of furniture a year to replace the pieces we were given by friends and family to furnish our home. In January of 2010 we purchased this lovely brown leather sectional sofa for our family room/media room. It is awesome.
As most of you know in order to get the lovely couch in our home we had to move a little quicker on our plans to remove the wall between the living room and the kitchen. Phil went to work on the demo part but the rebuilding took a few months.
As you can see in the picture below it was SO worth the wait. We love the amount of natural light that comes in now from the back windows. We also love that when we are entertaining I can be in the kitchen cooking and still feel a part of the conversation. It will also be really nice when we have kids so that they can play while I bake, cook and do the dishes and I will still be able to keep an eye on them. It has been fun to tie in the colors from the kitchen in to the living room. Since this picture was taken we have painted the living room to match the lighter beige on the walls in the kitchen!
The next picture is of the adorable church pew that our gracious neighbor, Jack, gave us. While talking about places to visit in Indiana Jack mentioned that he loves antiquing in Brown County. I told him that Phil and I would need to take a trip down there because we have been looking for a church pew for our living room. We ended our conversation and went about our days. The very next day Phil and I were doing some yard work out front and Jack came over to say hello and ask us if we wanted to come and take a look at a church pew that he had on his covered porch. We said we would love to come and check it out. Once we were over there Jack asked us if we wanted to have it. I did not think he was serious but was glad when he was because I had already fallen in love with it. The red color matches perfectly with our already red china cabinet! Thank you Jack!
Another one of our sweet and gracious friends, Chris, brought us this end table one evening. It works perfectly in the corner of our room next to our couch. I absolutely love the intricate woodwork on the edges! We are in desperate need of a new lamp but this one works for now.
Over the summer we were able to tackle some outdoor projects. In June my grandparents and mom came down and we repainted our back deck. The deck is functional but it was in need of a serious new paint job. The maroon paint from the previous owners was almost completely peeled off. We picked out this fabulous brown color and everyone went to town painting. It only took us a day to get the entire thing done. Once the deck was all spruced up we decided to give our black rod iron deck furniture a bit of a pick me up as well. 6 cans of green krylon later and we have totally "new" deck furniture.
During the summer we were blessed with another family home improvement project. This time Phil's dad and brother came down to help Phil re-roof our house. When we bought the house we knew that this was something that needed to be done within 5 years of owning it. We decided to get it over with quickly since it will most likely be our most expensive home improvement project. We were able to get the supplies for $4000. We paid Phils dad and brother with home cooked meals and an out to eat treat at the end of the week. We are so grateful that we have able bodied family members who know a thing or two about home improvement. It has saved us a lot of time and money and has helped our house to become a home! While my grandparents were down we also painted our door and shutters with some leftover coppery/brown paint from my parents. It love how it compliments the brick!
2010 was a great year for home improvement for us. With the help of family and friends we were able to get a lot done. The improvements we made inside and out will help us if we ever do need to sell our home. The open floor concept is "in" right now and I think that knocking the wall down between the living room and kitchen makes our home "in". The hardwood floors don't hurt either!
In 2011 we have big plans for more projects. Here is what you can be on the lookout for::
- Patching the drywall in the garage and painting all the walls white
- A new mailbox
- House address numbers
- Painting the cement floor in the basement storage/laundry room
- More shelving in the basement storage/laundry room
- A divider wall between the storage area and the laundry area
- Curtains and a sink skirt in the laundry room to make it more "homey"
- New dining room table
- Ceramic tile in the master bathroom