This Old House: Kids' Rooms

So, I FINALLY found the disk which houses photos of our house when we bought it. I have been seeking out these photos forever and am so excited to have found them because I continuously try to tell people about the insanity that our house was when we bought it, but sound as if I am full of exaggeration (although I totally am not).

First, a little prelude: We started our marriage in a one bedroom apartment. A year later, we moved from the apartment to a two bedroom townhouse in the same complex. When our lease came time to renew, and we found out that they would be increasing our rent, we foolishly giggled about the idea of buying a home. Soon, however, after talking to some "real" adults, we realized that buying a home wasn't so far fetched afterall and that, in reality, the cost wouldn't be a large difference than what we were paying. Of course, we didn't think about the projects...oh, the projects!

We began our search at the start of March 2007. Our lease expired March 30th and if we didn't sign a new one, we needed to be out at that time. My dad has a wonderful friend who is a real estate agent and quickly, he jumped on board to assist us. We told him about this house in a nearby suburb that we wanted to look at, so he made arrangements to meet us there.

We went inside. At first, it didn't seem too bad, but after going into a second or third room, there was no way that we could have lived there. The kitchen cabinets were falling apart. The walls were stained. The ceiling in the back rooms was caving in. Despite the beautiful fireplace in the master bedroom, the graffiti of 'shrooms having sex painted on the walls by squatters took away from the lure, and the basement was in the midst of collapsing. Add to that the fact that on the other side of the small backyard was an army thing, complete with huge containers that seemed to house explosives or something fun. Our realtor told us that there was "no way in hell" that he would allow us to buy that house and that the place should be condemned.

The second house that we looked at was much closer to our apartment. We walked in and fell in love. We immediately put in our offer and on the second to last day of the month, we closed on the house and began to clean, clean, clean. Then, we moved, moved, moved. And went to the apartment and cleaned, cleaned, cleaned. Then, we were homeowners and we didn't end up homeless in the process. It was definately a God thing.

However, it was far from perfect. The potential was there, but it needed work (and it still does). As a foreclosure, the previous owners seemed to be quite upset upon leaving, as was seen by the removal of all appliances (stove, fridge, washer, and dryer) as well as nearly all the light fixtures. Add in that the owners had a slightly...unusual...color scheme. We were facing a ton of tasks in the first few months.

So, let us begin with my two favorite rooms: Isa and Teo's bedrooms.

Before we moved in, one of the panels in one of the windows in Isa's room was broken out, so my dad had to replace it. The paint in her room wasn't too horrible, but wasn't much for a girls room and surely didn't suit our tastes, so we quickly got to work.

Her room was one of the first projects that we did. Here is her room when we bought the house. Plain white walls. Okay blue trim. Ugly rainbow ceiling fan without even a globe. Notice the cardboard in the window where it was broken.

Here is a photo of her room once it was completed (aside from curtains). Her bed and furniture was The Backyardigans, so her room is based off of the character of Uniqua.

And here is her room now, complete with curtains and a big girl bed. However, I just wish it would stay this clean...

And now, nearly four years later, I'm considering repainting her room to better match her brother's. She seems envious of his bedroom (as you will soon see why) and I would love to do something similar for her too...

Teo's room was a longer process. He wasn't even a peanut of a thought in our mind when we bought the house. So, for the longest time, the room looked exactly like it did when we bought the house, only full of boxes and junk...aka storage space.

Yes, you see that right. When we found out that my brother-in-law needed a place to stay, we quickly primed the walls and left them white. We threw a mattress on the floor and shoved the boxes off to the side so that he could have a crash pad. Then, in 2008, we found out that Teo was going to join our family. We pondered and thought and pondered some more as we cleaned out the room and began to change it from storage to a nursery. During the last half of my pregnancy, I began to paint....and I painted pretty much until lil' man was born...

However, despite it all, the room wasn't quite done when Teo joined the world. It was probably 98%, but not quite finished, however, with a took a long time until I was able to get it completed, but I did.

And, now, it basically looks the same. The furniture has changed as he has grown up. The crib is now a toddler bed. We switched out the changing table for a dresser. And the rocking chair has been switched with a nice rocker with an ottoman. But the walls have remained the same. There is nothing as amazing as sitting with him before bed and hearing him talk about (or better yet, to) the animals. His stuffed monkey, adoringly called "A-Ha" is his favorite non-human friend. And just tonight, as I tucked him in, he told me all about the "ird" (bird) on the tree.

So, there ya have it...two rooms in our "new" house....betcha can't wait to see what we've done with the rest of it, eh? Oooh, the suspense! Hehe.


The Porn Widow said...

Holy Wow woman. You are amazing. I don't know what you do for a living, but this should be it. They are just... stunning. You're just brimming with talent. Where are the rest?!?!?

Carla Sue said...


First off, I work in the nonprofit/ministry "industry" as my real job.

Secondly, since my "great job switch" from a hellish full time management position to a meager part time job at my church that I am in love with, I have been able to further pursue painting.

Go to or to!/pages/Heartworks/111928408872322 to see my "baby" project, heARTworks. :)

The rest will come...patience my dear, although I'm sorry the rest may husband has not approved mural walls for the main living spaces! ;)