Monday, February 01, 2010

Let's Start At The Beginning

Now doesn't this look like a cute little house? 

"Lot's of Potential" could have been a way to describe it.

"Good bones" is how we liked to refer to Bungalow'56, in those heady early days of possibility.

Let me warn you. . .  The following images may be frightening.

Enter at your own risk.  

I don't usually allow this sort of content on my blog, but if you are to truly appreciate how far we've come.  

I'm afraid this is the only way.  

Don't be scared, I will be here with you to hold your  hand. . . while I share our little story.  It will be O.K.  I promise.

It all began when I was nine months pregnant with our second child, with three weeks to go.
As the due date loomed, our little 850 square foot, 2 bedroom 1st home, which included a basement suite along with a tenant, started to close in on me.

We had fully intended to remain there, until Bungalow'56 was suggested by my parents who had driven by it on their way home. 

It was being sold by the 85 year old owner, who now lived in a seniors lodge.

The price was right.  We could do whatever we wanted with it.  We could make it our own.

The Agronomist had three weeks.

Everything was original.  

We looked past the lack of mouldings, we looked past the wallpaper.  
We looked past the rolled on gold flecked fibre wall, the orange 70's shag rug and the gold crushed velvet curtains.
Obviously we were blind.  
It was the only way.

We were drunk with the space.  This house was a mansion.  We couldn't comprehend 1400 square feet.  It was almost double the space we were currently living in, AND it had a full basement.  We would be moving from 850 square feet of livable floor space to 2800.

It made me dizzy.

Why would I care if the toilet and tub were blue?

They had kindly found wall paper that was a perfect match.  What more could I have asked for?

My children could run and train for the olympics down the hallway.  We could use walkie-talkies to stay in touch.  But that wasn't the only upside to this house.  Unlike something new, we could create a look that was truly ours.
I was dreaming of thick substantial trim-work, hardwood floors, new windows and of course, smooth paintable ceilings.  The heavy thick stipple applied to every ceiling, in every room, would be no match for The Agronomist.

Did I also mention I was about to go into labour any day?

I was a woman about to nest . . . but I needed to buy the nest first.  

We were young.  It was ten years ago. Thirty was the new nineteen.  

The Agronomist had already remodeled our first little bungalow.  He had built a basement suite with his own two hands.  This would be a snap.  A Full time job? No problem.  He was a farm boy and farm boys know how to thresh through the night.

Plus I was a nine month pregnant lady who could see the house's potential. He really had no choice.

Stay tuned...

There's more to come from, 

The Renovation Saga of Bungalow'56

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  1. This reminds me of our house with the dark, paneled walls, every room carpeted, even the bathroom, kitchen and dining room (yuck). In 1984, we started making our small house our own. Now it's time to replace what we replaced. Did I mention that we took out the brick chimney this fall and currently have holes in walls and floors on two levels, pending a decision on just exactly what to do with that space? A house is a never-ending project. But at least it's yours. Thanks for taking us inside Bungalow56.

  2. LOVE the house - looks like you have a lot of work! Nice to meet you and from what I gather you live somewhere on the Prairies - your house reminds me of the ones in our old hood of Sherwood Park, AB. That was 4 houses ago though.
    I love your writing style and am looking forward to following along. It is funny that your teenagers know more than you (computers)! Mine had to help me also!
    I JUST figured out how to make a header and still want to tweak it a bit. I like your 3 column width blog too - hmmmm. I need to experiment some more.

  3. whoah! that was some heavy duty nesting driving that decision! i can't wait to see what 10 years of nesting has accomplished. the blue toilet, by the way, with the matching toilet brush? awesome!

    and painting a piano? that sounds like a fun project. go for it!

  4. Chuckling so much at this! Oh the decisions we make when we need to nest! We're in the middle of revamping our house too. It has good bones but is so not us and so dated.


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