One Year Later – what we’ve done with the house

One of the things that made us so excited about our new house – besides the private, expansive lot and location in a great town near some of our closest friends – was the potential to add our style. So many houses we looked at had already been updated to sell and while most buyers would be excited about not having to do a bunch of work in their new house, that was the opposite of our desire.

While we were not looking for a major fixer-upper, we were on the hunt for a house that needed a cosmetic makeover. We knew right away when we saw this one online that it was the perfect house for us (read the story of how we found it here and a full tour of the before here).

You’ve likely heard me say this before, but we are approaching this house makeover in phases. If our budget allowed, we’d love to just tear it all apart and put it back together as we see it in our imaginations … but, that’s not our real life. And so we’re moving along at a pace that works for our family, our time and our bank account.

Over the past year, we did tackle a few major projects and lots of little diy’s.

There are times when I look around the house and feel annoyed that we haven’t done more and then I really think about it and realize we’ve actually accomplished a lot. So this post is to share all the progress we’ve made over the past year with you, but also as a reminder to me that we’ve come a long way!

Here’s a collection of before and afters, progress photos and mini-makeovers we’ve done in our house this year.


In the entry, we painted the walls and ceiling (Shoji White by Sherwin Williams) and the trim, doors and banister (Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams). We swapped out the ceiling lights with simple drum shade flush mounts which really modernized the space.

Here’s the post all about the phase one entry updates.

We painted the banister (such a great transformation!) and replaced the carpet on the stairs. I can’t wait to swap out the front door to let in more light and bring wood floors throughout the whole main floor. I think that will really create cohesion from room to room.


The living room is such a good before and after.

We decided to go moody and dark on the walls (Ancestral by Behr), trim and mantle (Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams). I hand-painted the tile with a graphic pattern to add a punch and love it every time I walk by.

Here’s the post about how I painted the tiles.

On the other side of the room is a piano and opening to the dining room, which has yet to be touched :)


Off the entry to the right is a small office that Ryan uses. It previously had large built-in desks and bookshelves that dwarfed the size of the room, so we pulled them out and added in a smaller scaled desk and bookshelves.


We were not planning on making any changes to the kitchen until we do a big, total remodel (aka. tearing it all out and switching the footprint of the room), but on night one, we couldn’t help ourselves and a mini makeover ensued.

This mini makeover consisted of painting the walls (Shoji White by Sherwin Williams), cabinets and trim (Iron Ore by Sherwin Williams), changing out the hardware, adding a few extra can lights, swapping out the sink and faucet and replacing the upper cabinets with open shelves.

The changes were low-budget and high impact. I’m so glad we did an in-between makeover to make us enjoy living and using the kitchen as it is now rather than waiting for the complete dream makeover to come.

Here’s the post about the kitchen makeover.


Off the kitchen is a little window-less bathroom. The walls were deep red when we moved in and was the first thing in the house to get paint.

I painted the vanity, added crazy botanical wallpaper, switched out the mirror and added a few accessories and it’s a whole new room.

Here’s the post about the bathroom makeover.


The family room is our most used room and it hadn’t been touched until just a few months ago. I finally painted the walls and trim (same as the rest of the house) which really cleaned up the space.

We have such great plans for this room – ceiling beams, new light fixture, built-ins, wood floors – and I can’t wait to get it to be the statement space we imagine it to be.

Here’s the post about the family room updates.


Upstairs, we replaced all of the carpet and trim and painted the walls and ceiling (you guessed it: Shoji White by Sherwin Williams). The trim hasn’t been caulked and painted yet and the light switch/outlet covers are still off. But we’re 80% complete with the upstairs bedrooms, so that’s a win.

More about what we did with the dormer window.

little girl's collage wall


The middle boys share a room with bunkbeds and two big closets. We still have a few details to add – painting that trim, adding window coverings and some closet organization. I’ll do a real reveal when we get a little closer to finished.


step stool bedside table

Our bedroom hasn’t received much attention other than the walls, carpet, trim and new light fixture. Our mattress is on the floor and I’m using a step stool as a night stand for now. Someday we’ll get real furniture.

Details about our room here.


When we moved in, the third floor was one large open space with a stairwell in the center. We decided to split it up, add walls and create a bedroom on one side and hangout room for the kids on the other.

Here’s the post about the third floor hangout room.


attic boys room outdoors

Through a doorway off the hangout room is our oldest son’s room that we also use a guest room with friends and family come to stay. It is so nice to have a queen bed to offer guests and our 13 year old is not complaining about it either :)

attic bedroom

We have some decorating to do in here and sliding barn doors need to be finished for the closet and entrance. I’ll keep you posted when we get those up!


Above the garage was a big storage space that was a dream come true for us. We wanted a house with room for a home office and this space was perfect.

We finished the walls, added vinyl floors and trim, put in a wall of desks and moved our big dining room table to the center of the room for added work space.

It is so bright and quiet and visually inspiring for me and a great addition to our home.

Here’s the post about finishing the studio and another about how I decorated it for summer.

I guess we really have done a lot this year!

It’s fun to look at all of the progress and appreciate the hard work that has gone in to making our house right for us. Of course we have a million ideas and plans and I’m looking forward to seeing how those play out in the years to come.

Any questions about sources or need help finding posts that cover these spaces? Let me know in the comments!

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