before & after

I think I mentioned back in April that we moved out of our apartment into a rental house! Our lease was running up at the end of June, and with a 75 lb dog and two years of walking up three flights of stairs with arms full of groceries, we were ready to get OUT. We started looking for houses to rent, but we really weren't finding anything we loved (or even liked).

We were driving over to Brian's sister Joy Lynne and her husband Chris' house one night and noticed a "for rent" sign in a yard four houses down from theirs. We thought living 15 minutes away from them would be fun, but walking distance!!? Sounded too good to be true. So I called the next day and asked if it was still available. It was not. I asked what they were asking for rent, just out of curiosity.. It was only $50 more than what we were paying in our APARTMENT and $300 less per month than other houses we had seen. It was so sad.

The next day I get a call from Joy Lynne. She told me they were walking down the street and a man was in front of that same house... He randomly said, "Thought we had a renter, but they backed out!" Joy Lynne and Chris quickly responded that they know some people who might be interested! They told him about us and he sounded interested... They mentioned that we had a dog around 50-ish lbs... (Toby looks smaller than he really is). He said no dogs were allowed. They said he was well behaved and completely house trained (he did go through 3 training classes, but you'd never know it). The man caved and said, "okay!" So they walked up to the house to meet his wife and look around. They even gave Joy Lynne and Chris a key to have so we could come look at it!

Long story short, we worked out a deal with them and signed a lease. Yes, we paid 3 months double rent between the apartment and the house, but they gave us a discount on those first months, and it was totally worth it. We love living four houses down from family and take full advantage of it. We have had Sunday morning scones in the driveway with the boys and Joy Lynne (when Chris had the stomach bug), we walk down for dinners with a bottle of wine, and we even joined in on a family walk. It's so wonderful. Toby loves his yard, and we love the extra space.

I have pictures to post from the interior of the house. The exterior is a complete mess. The yard was ugly to begin with, and it's only gotten worse. This weekend is going to be devoted to yard work.

So! This was supposed to be a before & after post- The kitchen has so few cabinets and no pantry.. I found this hutch on craigslist for $100. Here it is before:

And here it is after! A lovely shade of blue-gray, and the back wall is a greenish-blue. I love the way it turned out. I primed, painted, and changed the knobs. I painted it fast too. Started at 5:00 and finished around 1am. Probably could have done a better job, but it works for now!


  1. Keep going! I wanna see more b&a

  2. Yay! I love it, Al! You should do a before/after for all of your rooms, because I know they are all magazine worthy. :) Can't believe I STILL haven't been there!

  3. Oh! I love that!!! What paint did you use?

  4. i think it was a behr color called "cloud"