Saturday, December 29, 2012

The House that Jay Built

The week before Christmas, Jay was gone for an entire week.  As history always repeats itself here at our house, whenever he is gone for a long period of time, I tend to come up with a plethera of Home DIY  Projects.  And, I've been known to rip up carpet and tear out walls on a mere whim ready to surprise him when he walks through the door.  It helps keep the spark in our marriage!
This time was no exception.  I didn't weild any crowbars - but I did let the HGTV portion of my imagination run WiLd.
As our family has grown, our house has not.
With 6 kids, I feel a little like this on most days
So, after a few months of having our house on the market with no lookers - I decided to present Jay with my plan for increasing the number of bedrooms and living space in our home.  The whole "Let's just stay here and make it work because I'm going crazy in this house waiting to see if it sells" mantra.   It's a multi-phase plan and one which will not be quick.  But, we must make it work on our limited budget - paying cash for most as we can save up.  I thought our bloggy friends might want to follow along - so I'll be posting pics of our before and afters along the way.  Here is the jist of what we plan to do:

Our home is a typical 1970's tri-level (think Brady Bunch).  It is meant to have 3 bedrooms on the upper level, a small living room and eat-in kitchen on the main level, and a den in the basement.  The garage steps down just off the kitchen.  Total square footage is about 1850 sq ft.

Phase 1:  Make 2 bedrooms in the basement - giving us 5 bedrooms.

Phase 2: Move all the "garagy stuff" to a storage shed and make the garage a den and another bedroom (grand total of 6 bedrooms - we were going for 7 - but 6 will do)

Phase 3:  Create a computer/work area in the kitchen, expand the countertops to include a big "cookie making" counter (does anyone else envision cold winter nights spent rolling out cookie dough with the kids in a big country kitchen like the Waltons?), build a small pantry into the kitchen corner,  and move our family dinner table into the current living room making it the dining room

The biggest faults with this house are the small size of the bedrooms and the lack of space to have people over for meals.  By creating more bedrooms - even though the spaces will be on the smaller side - we can spread the kiddos out a bit.  Then, by moving our living/dining spaces around - we can accomodate more people around the table. 

We are gaining excitement and have used our bit of Christmas money from parents to buy 2x4s, drywall, and mud.   So far, a stud wall is up in the basement and the sheet rock is being prepped.  It should be a fun winter!

Here are a few "Before" shots.  Excuse the Christmas present aftermath.  Storage is another problem around here.  This side of the basement will become a bedroom and where the Barbie house is - that's a future closet.

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