1808 Bungalow Before and After

I had a wonderful time today at our annual Historical Association Christmas party.  It is always nice to meet people who are like-minded and to discuss preservation and the future of our city.  I was reminded again today that I never posted pictures of the first bungalow redo that Steven and I took on.   After looking at them, now I realize why I probably did not let these out…they are hideous!!!!  Even though a lot of them are disgusting, I did not post the really bad ones.  They are just not for polite eyes.  🙂  So, without further ado, here are the pics.  This is for you Brittany!  (You probably won’t be flattered by that after you view the pics…haha)

BEFORE front

AFTER front


AFTER side

BEFORE kitchen

AFTER kitchen

BEFORE kitchen

AFTER kitchen- we have since retiled the counters too

BEFORE dining room


IN PROGRESS dining room

AFTER dining room

BEFORE living room

BEFORE living room

BEFORE living room

AFTER living room

AFTER living room (looking into dining room)

BEFORE Sunroom back door

IN PROGRESS sunroom/backdoor (we painted the door and refinished the floor)



AFTER hall

BEFORE entrance to bathroom (took down the weird hall addition to the bathroom down and added a small closet laundry area)

AFTER weird hall gone, laundry added, new door frame to bathroom

BEFORE bathroom (this is one of the better pictures...seriously)

AFTER bathroom

BEFORE bath tub (UGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)

AFTER bath tub

BEFORE back bedroom

AFTER back bedroom

AFTER another back bedroom.  Vivian was three when I painted this room and when I opened the can she said "Broccoli!!!"As you can tell, I didn’t take very many pictures of this redo and the ones I did take, were not very good.  However, I think you get the drift.  This house took us nine months to complete from start to finish.  We had extensive inside and outside work.  We had a new roof put on. It had termites really bad, had to get that treated.  When we first bought the house, we went in with gloves up to the arm pits and clothes covering everything (If I owned a pair of waders…I would have had them on!).  If you think these are bad, I have some pics that are worse.  We found a drowned possum in the bathroom.  Apparently a family had been living in the attic.  Squirrels would get in the attic too!  Yikes….  I don’t think we ever saw a rat.  We had lots of holes we had to fix.  We also redid all of the flooring, adding new to the kitchen, refinishing the floors in all of the other rooms.  We added a new front door.  Painted and caulked every surface.  Paint, caulk and quarter round will cure a lot of ugly….

We cleaned up the yard and pressure washed the house.  We painted the outside window frames, door and door frame.  Too much to list here.  We did it all!

Hope you are having a wonderful Sunday!


House For Sale 3BR/1.5 Baths


We decided to put Bungalow number 2 up for sale.  I am sure some of you followed its 10 month gut and reno.  If not, you can click on the tag “Bungalow” to see all the before and after.  Anyway, here are the details:

3 bedrooms

1 full bath

1 half bath in the master bedroom

Living Room


Dining Room (which looks more like an office)

Kitchen, with refrigerator and stove less than a year old and under warranty.

Small laundry room in the back with a washer and dryer that is less than a year old and still under warranty.

HUGE backyard

Alarm system

The number one reason to buy this house: close to the BEST neighbors in town! (us!)

1700 sq. feet

ASKING PRICE: $65,000.00

It appraised for $78,000.00 January 2010.

Click here for before and after pictures.

More info to come about when we will be having the open house.


My favorite thing I did for my rent house

So, we closed on our construction loan on our second rent house today.  I am very glad to have that project completed and the house rented out!!  It took us 10 months to gut and renovate the house.  Such projects creep along at such a slow pace when you devote only Saturdays to them. 

Anyway, my favorite thing in our rent house next door is this hanging rack for the small 1/2 bath in the master bedroom.  I used a scrap piece of baseboard and several knobs I had lying around from other projects. 

Here are a few pics of our rent house through Vivian’s eyes.  She took all of these pictures.  It was funny to find them on my camera.


Steven would stand behind Vivian in the picture and smile and then leave the room.  She would look at the camera and see Steven and then look behind her but he was not there.  It took her a little while to figure out he was playing with her.

Happy Wednesday!


Two down, one to go!

Drumroll please……………………

It is official.  This past weekend we had our latest house project appraised and will be putting the For Rent sign up soon!  Yay!  If you felt that wild breeze yesterday blow past your face, that was me exhaling……  I am glad to have this second house under our feet and off of our books.  2010 will be the year we concentrate on our very own house.  I guess the good thing is, our rental property will be paying our house note.

Without further ado, here are the before and after pictures.  Enjoy!

Before and After pictures of 94 Bungalow

Or you can view them on Facebook

Here is a teaser:



BEFORE living room/den

BEFORE living room/den

AFTER living room/den

AFTER living room/den

BEFORE dining room

BEFORE dining room/office

AFTER dining room/office

BEFORE kitchen

AFTER kitchen

AFTER kitchen 2

BEFORE master bedroom

AFTER masterbedroom


November, where did you go?

Hello, my name is Andrea.   I thought I should refresh your memory as to who I am since I didn’t manage to write one  post in November!  Oh well.  Lots of things have been going on…houses to be worked on, things to get involved in, holidays to be celebrated! 

Thanksgiving was here at my house.  My mom, dad, brother, sister and nephew came up from New Orleans to help celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday.  We ate lots of turkey sandwiches, worked on a very complicated puzzle and played with Skyler.

Yup, he’s a cutie! 

Today, we cleaned out the rent house we have been working on.  We touched up the paint, installed thresholds and worked on the bathroom plumbing.  I think this is where most of our spare time in November was spent….putting the finishing touches on this house.   It seems like it took forever to get this one fixed up, but, when I think about it, we only worked there on Saturdays and, every once in a while, on a weekday evening.  So, when you work at that rate, you don’t go anywhere fast!  I came home today with a huge red pine stain on my arm.  I spilled the stain I was working with and accidentally stuck my arm in it..yuck!  It looks like a really bad spray tan.  This stuff doesn’t come off very easily! I also was using some oil base paint to finish up the baseboards in the master bedroom.  I was covered in paint and stain by the time I called it quits.  I almost felt like I was going to have to put a capful of paint thinner in my bath water in order to get all this junk off!

Every time Steven, Vivian and I walk over to the “little house” as Vivian calls it, people cross the street and go the other way (away from us).  I never thought about it until I took a good look in the mirror before going over there today.  We wear old paint clothes with dried caulk and thirty colors of paint and none of our clothes match.  Meaning, I have on an orange shirt, a blue skirt, pink leggings and whatever jacket I could find.  We must look like the Florence Street hobos when we step out! HA!  Check out this pic if you don’t know what I am talking about.

One of those Florence Avenue hobos

Last night was our church Christmas banquet.  We laughed a lot and had a great time amongst friends.  Before we left for the banquet, we decided to take a family picture for our Christmas card.  Here are some of the pictures.  Steven took some of Vivian while I was getting dressed.  Some are from earlier in the evening when Vivian and I were playing in the snow.

Haha...this has got to be my favorite one!

My family

Good night!


What we’ve been up to this week…

No, not an exciting post.  More reflective than anything.  I felt sick today, so I left Steven over at our rent property putting in the final touches in each bathroom, installing baseboards and finishing up the plumbing….yay for him!  🙂 I did help him caulk the baseboards and liquid nailed finishing pieces onto the cabinets in the kitchen.  I am convinced that paintable caulk and paint can fix a multitude of ugly!  I started to feel ill, so I came back over here.  Hopefully he won’t read this post and realize how much of a slacker I am being this evening while he is over there slaving!

These beautiful flowers have been blooming in the backyard of 94 Bungalow (the rent house we are currently fixing up).  They are gorgeous and almost look like roses.  They come from a ten foot tall bush.  I cannot identify them.  They do not have a scent and their constitution is very weak, they did not last one day in a vase.  So, if anyone knows what they are, please drop me a line.

Yesterday, I had the day off.  I realized two things: 1) I seem to never get anything done on my TO DO list, even if I take the day off; 2) that my dog shares my affinity for people watching.

taavi people watching

taavi people watching 2

taavi is people watching 3

And believe me, there are some interstin’ people to watch on my street!  Viv and I packed up the boxes of Christmas presents that we send to Handumanan Village, Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, Philippines.  We send gifts to the children and a box of supplies for their school every year.  This year, when I emailed our contact over there to ask what they need, she said: the presents are nice, but send school supplies and books.  LOL….it is funny to me that the adults find the presents frivolous.  They just want basic needs met.  But, the kids LOVE the gifts we send.  Some of them do not even take them out of their packaging.  When some people from our church visited this Spring, they noticed that several of our gifts were on shelves unopened.  They did not want to get them dirty.  It was more like a trophy not to be touched than a toy to play with.  Very interesting.  I hope they get around to playing with them.

boxes for the Philippines

vivian helping pack boxes

philippines boxes

Vivian had a great time helping me.  She kept asking me, “Are we sending these to the kids?”  Too cute. Speaking of cute, Vivian and Taavi are getting along better now.  She has completely gotten over being jealous and is actually enjoying him now.  I catch her singing to him sometimes.

vivi and taavi playing

vivi and taavi playing 2

black and white vivi

Taavi has a little blue and green turtle that we call Louis.  It is his teddy bear.  He loves the dumb, stinky, smelly thing.  He picked it out himself from PetSmart.  Since he would not part with it in the store, I bought it for him.

taavi's teddy....louis


Taavi is looking more and more like his dad everyday.  Would you listen to me?  You would think I was talking about my son or something.  🙂  Fortunately, I am not.  I do not think Steven would appreciate me comparing Taavi’s looks to his.  Here is Taavi’s dad.

Taavi's dad

When posting these pictures, I saw that Steven snapped this picture of Vivian Thursday.  I wonder if she got a whooping right after it was taken.  She is positively staring daggers!  If looks could kill…

vivian staring daggers

Well, besides a lot of other boring details, I have had a very busy week.  Soon to come will be pictures of the finished 94 bungalow.  We are finishing up, affixing the details and next week we will refinish the floors and clean up.  At that time I will take good after pictures and post the whole album online.

Happy Saturday!


Labor Day Weekend – Ouch!

Pictures from our Labor Day weekend.  We worked a little bit more on the bungalow rent house.  Not much else to report.  We installed the cabinets and counters in the kitchen and I textured and painted the walls in the bathroom.  For the before kitchen pictures, scroll down a post or two, or click here.

Vivian helping daddy install the countertops

Vivian helping daddy install the countertops

94 bungalow kitchen counters

Bathroom pictures before.

After peeling off wallpaper, a coat of paint, joint compound, and then yet another layer of wallpaper, the wall was less than even.  So, I textured the wall and because it still had a few blemishes, I painted it a fairly dark color to hide the imperfections:

94 bungalow bathroom texture

Have to pay the painter again!

Haha...that face is hilarious!

Haha...that face is hilarious!

I don’t have pics of the room painted.  It was so dark outside when I finished, the paint is semi-gloss and the poor bulb in the bathroom is about to give out.  So, I will take one tomorrow and post it.  I wanted to clean up my mess and paint the window sill before giving you a nice “ta-da” picture.  I hurt when I got up Sunday morning…..ouchies!  As they say here in Alexandria, I am all stove up!  (I never heard that saying in New Orleans….lol).

***UPDATE: Here is the bathroom all nice and painted.

94 bathroom painted


Have a good weekend!


Work accomplished this weekend

Well, its that time of year again.  School is back in full force and my blogging is down to an all time low.  Work on our recent bungalow purchase has not slacked off though.  Friday, after we ate, we went over to 94 Bungalow and painted the kitchen.  Steven primed it Thursday night all by his lonesome self.  I have to say, I was impressed!  The kitchen is an old time bead board type both wall and ceiling.  So, Steven had to prime the wall, ceiling, trim and windows….basically everything in the room.  I painted the walls and ceiling with Glidden’s Cozy Light.

Kitchen before 1

Kitchen before 1

Kitchen before 2

Kitchen before 2

Kitchen before 3

Kitchen before 3

Kitchen before 4

Kitchen before 4

It was pretty gross, as you can tell from the pictures above.  It looked like the house was starting to be remodeled in most of the other rooms, but the kitchen had not been touched.  It has grease all up the wall and the large vinyl linoleum piece they had in there was peeling up around the room.  After we scrubbed the walls, scraped the peeling paint down, primed, painted and redid the floor, this is what it looks like…beware, it is not a true AFTER photo as we have a few details to finish, but you can see the difference:

Kitchen in process 1

Kitchen in process 1


Kitchen in process 2

Kitchen in process 2

The spots that you that are not painted very thoroughly are where the cabinets are going to go.  The cabinets will run along under the window and then “L” on the wall opposite the window.  Didn’t Steven do a good job on the floor?  I thought it came out very nice.  We bought some generic ceramic tiles and terra cotta grout.  Steven is going to install the cabinets sometime this week, and I will finish them off with a red chestnut stain and a coat of poly. 

Kitchen floor

Kitchen floor

Cabinets waiting to be installed and finished

Cabinets waiting to be installed and finished

 ***Update: Click here for updated pictures of the kitchen***

Here is a picture of Vivian doing “karate” with the shop vac attachments in front of the cabinets where I was trying to take pictures.

Vivian looking fierce, trying to do karate

Vivian looking fierce, trying to do karate



Finally, I put a coat of black paint on this thing.  I think it makes it look better.  I need to get Steven to make some doors for the cabinet.  I tore out the cabinet pieces on the top half.  They were falling off anyway.  I figured whoever rents it can use it for a Kchotke shelf.  Hopefully, in the near future, I will post pictures of the complete house.  But for now, here are the in process ones.

Built In Before

Built In Before

Built in after

Built in after

For more pictures of the transformation of this room, click here.  I painted the front three rooms of the house the same color, Timothy Straw by Glidden.  It makes it easier on the eye than seeing two shades of orange and one room bright Irish green.  We have a lot of finishing work to do, which we will try to accomplish on Labor day weekend, but I am finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.  Once we get this one off of our books, we will be able to return to OUR house projects!

Happy weekend everyone!


Bungalow Work on Memorial Day

Since we have not done a whole lot with the new bungalow rent house we purchased, we decided to go over there today to clean up, paint and plan the next stage for this house.  I painted the dining room and then, somewhere in there, I got bored and took my new SLR camera around to see what kind of pictures I could get out of it.  I have bought two books on digital SLR photography…by the way…so, I wanted to try out some of the tips in the book.  Even though they are not phenomenal, you have to admit that these photos are MUCH better than what my old dying digi cam was taking last month.  The last picture cracks me up.  It looks like Vivian needs to go on a FEED THE CHILDREN campaign poster!  LOL.  I found her in the living room eating a piece of leftover Popeyes chicken.  She looked so funny in her do-rag (I wear one when I paint and you know the old saying, monkey see, monkey do, monkey has to have one too!)  Although, I do believe she looks a LOT better than I do in a do-rag.

Vivian and hydrangeas

Vivian in the tree, bungalow

Vivian..feed the children

Bye bye orange peel!!  Hello Timothy Straw by Benjamin Moore!

painting 94 dining room

94 bungalow dining room before

This house has a beautiful yard.  Since it borders our yard, we are toying with the idea of moving our property lines and having it resurveyed, etc.  I cut several blooms from this very old hydrangea bush.  I am also toying with the idea of digging the thing up and planting it somewhere in our back yard.  I found this pink looking bloom.  I am not sure what it is.  I can’t tell if it is a weed or if it is some sort of old flower.  Anyone know?


unidentified pink flower 94 bungalow