Saturday, April 30, 2011

Please Have Pity On ME, Vintage Revivals! I'm Begging!

Hi friends! I am swallowing my pride and showing you what my real life is like because I am DESPERATE. I feel like I am living a lie in having this blog because I am not crafty person and my house need of some major help. If you didn't know this, I started this blog to save ideas of things I wanted to do and make when I got some time SOMEDAY!

I am entering the Vintage Revivals Epic Room Makeover in hopes that I get some much needed help.

This is the short of a VERY LONG story!!!!

When my husband and I were getting married, we thought about our future. My husband doesn't make a ton of money and if I ever wanted to be a stay-at-home mom, we knew we needed to buy an inexpensive house, preferably one that had a basement apartment in it. We live in a college town with many older homes that have basement apartments. We started looking and found a house that we THOUGHT would help us with our situation. It had a large upstairs (that needed work, but had so much potential) and a basement apartment (that needed A LOT of work) and a barn that had 2 bathrooms, a small kitchen a bedroom and a loft. Totally fun!!!! We bought it!

We feel like MANY things should have been disclosed to us that weren't. For example, it used to be a drug house. We are talking drug bust, SWAT team, prison time, newspapers and all! It had been flooded from the top of the 3 stories because it got foreclosed on and the people were mad. The roof in the barn leaked. And this is just the beginning. There were many things wrong. Yes, we did get an inspection, but some things don't show up when they are behind walls and ceilings or until you move in and start living there:( ALL of these things added some major unexpected costs and time that we were not planning for!

We rented out the upstairs, gutted the basement and remodeled it and lived in the barn for 2 years. When we finished the basement and our first child was born, we moved into the basement and lived for 2 years. Right before our second child was born, we moved into the upstairs. It has 5 very small bedrooms (the house is almost 100 yrs. old) and 2 full baths. I thought this would fit our needs for years to come.

The problem is that every room upstairs needs work too and by work, I mean tear down the lathe and plaster, insulate the walls, update the electrical etc.. SLOWLY, we have been going through working on the house. BUT it is overwhelming with 2 small children who want to be involved, a lack of money and time, and some problems that we don't know what to do about. My dream to be a stay-at-home mom, unfortunately, has not worked even with basement renters.

In order for us to work on our house and to do any sort of recreation activities or vacations or do anything beyond mere survival, I work 5 hours a day at a Montessori pre-school (and the kids get to come with me.) It is the best job I could think of having at this time. I could go back to work as a Special Education Teacher, but I would be gone 8-9 hours a day without my kids and be stressed and exhausted for 10 months of the year. I would make more money, but the money is NOT worth the trade off of letting someone else raise my kids.

My daughter keeps asking when we are going to move to a new house. I am embarrassed of our rough house. It's not decorated because it is not in budget. Some days I cry thinking "What in the world did we do to ourselves in buying this house?" It is overwhelming. The work is slow and sporadic. I feel like I'm drowning in despair some days. With baby #3 coming in 2 months, I just wonder how we are going to get anything done.

I could use help in any of the rooms. I have photos of four of the rooms that would love some Vintage Revival assistance.

This winter my husband put a wood burning stove into the fireplace. I wanted gas burning, but he won. This is what our fireplace looks like now. When you walk into our house, this is what you see! YUCK!!! It needs help. I will take any advice on what to do with it! Obvisiously, I need help decorating the mantle too!

Our front room is blah. Hand-me-down couches, one picture on the wall and my husband's huge bachelor lifestyle TV. That's it! This entry room needs some major help.

We've already done a few things to the upstairs bathroom, but you wouldn't be able to tell. The wall paper and paint is just so lovely (please sense the sarcasm). Most people think the bathroom has such potential. That's what I keep telling myself.

Don't be jealous of the paint job on the door! You could probably pull something like this off in your own home!!!

Oh Baby! This bathroom is HOT! The tub is on blocks because the clawfeet are missing! Sweet!

It actually is a very fun bathroom, but it needs a new look!

This is the room we are working on right now. It is going to be the baby's room. This is the before.

We knocked out the lathe and plaster. The kids love destroying the walls.

We put in insulation, updated the electrical and started hanging sheet rock! Unfortunately, we had to tear out the built in window seat because there was so much cold air coming in through it. It was open to the outside porch below!

I would love any help decorating this room. We plan to rebuild the window seat and put shelves up both sides of the window since it doesn't have a closet. Wouldn't a little board and batten look great up on the vertical walls?

So far, we have the sheetrock up. The kids had to draw their pictures all over it! They love to draw in every room before we paint them.

The other day, we started mudding the room. This will take a while since we are not professionals. I want it to look somewhat nice. The kids think they are "helpful," but it takes a lot more time and more work to clean up from them "mudding." They pick it up with their hands and spread it all over the walls. I just can't say "no" because I want them to feel a part of remodeling the house. I want them to be proud of the work we do. I scrape the mud off the walls after they are done and will have to do a little more sanding!

We have "finished" my daughter's room and I even did a fancy striped paint job, but nothing is on the wall because I am afraid. I dont' know why I have a phobia of putting nails in walls. With just a few of Mandi's ideas, Cadence's room could be so cute!

I could show pictures of just about every room in my house that could use some decorating help. When we redo a room, we do just the minimum. The accessories and decor have to wait until someday when we have more time and money.

I'm begging that Vintage Revivals comes to my house so maybe one or two or three or four of our rooms can look even a little bit better than they are. My sanity is going quickly! It's a strain on my marriage. And some days, I feel sad and depressed to go home to the mess we live in.

Please Mandi (and everyone judging and reading this), choose my family as your project and help make our house into a home. Make my nightmare more bearable. We NEED it!!!


  1. If it were my choice, I would give you the makeover. I hope you win. Good luck.

  2. First: you kids are so cute!
    Second: you did a great work on your daughter's room and I'm sure you will do it on the rest of your house.
    Three: out there on the blog-world there are plenty of creative women and I'm totally sure you will find a lot of ideas.
    I will help you linking you some of the most interesting things I've found. Good luck!!!!

  3. As soon as the voting begins, you've got mine! Hope you get it!

  4. I agree, you deserve to win. Then perhaps some day, you can start on the crafts you so kindly collect for your and our inspiration. You have my vote!

  5. As soon as the voting begins, you have my vote also! You deserve it! You are so giving and helpful to others.

  6. omg where did you get your daughter's bed and dresser?? I had the same one growing up!

  7. you've got my vote:) Wish I could enter! My apartment can't be repainted though and it's so tiny that I'm not sure much could be done. But home is home:)

  8. Um okay first of all your kids with mud all over themselves?! PRICELESS!!!!!!! So stinking cute! I never let my kids help with painting or things like this; never really thought about it. I'm more of a "get in there, get it done" person but it could be an awesome teaching moment (which I guess is why you're a Montessori teacher and I'm not, ha ha!).

    Anyway I do hope you win!

  9. Holy cats!!! OK. I love that you took this on, I love that your kids help, I love that you TOLD your husband NOT to do that to the FP and you had nothing to do with that choice, and I love the potential that bathroom has!

  10. You have my vote. We also bought a 100 year old 'project' but lucky for us it is small, so we do not have as much to do! Good luck, your daughter room looks really good I like the colors!


  11. one word: VELCRO 3M puts out a velcro wall hanging product that works great. I have the same phobia about nails in walls. the 3M one can get pricey but I bet sticky back velcro would still work great and a little "goof off" should get the stick off when you want it too.
    Good luck on the contest

  12. I love what you did to your daughter's room! I also had no idea that you'd lived in the barn for awhile! My parents' house has been without some walls, and ceilings and stuff for about 10 years due to termites, and I hear ya when you talk about living in a mess. It gets to you sometimes. I hope you guys win, you deserve it!

  13. There really is so much potential in your house but I hear you with the stresses of house projects with little children (and pregnant bellies) in the mix. I wonder if you could tile the front of the brick of your fireplace? The right tile might really smooth out the look and look really nice.

  14. oh - I am hearing you on the "so much more should have been disclosed" issue... groan, I won't go into detail... let's just say it rhymes with Purr Mights...

    and seriously - I don't think I would have entered the giveaway if I'd known you were also... Mandi lives about a mile from me (though I haven't met her in person) so I almost feel silly :)

  15. what's your number? I can't find you to vote :)

  16. So do you vote? Has it just not started yet?
    Here's a tip for your mudded walls. As you mud small sections, have a damp household sponge available. Slap the section with the damp sponge you just did and you'll have instant texture.
    Best of luck with your 'money pit'. We'll all help ya' as much as we can!!
    Oh and if you don't already, check out the Drab to Fab blog. She does wonders with cans of Krylon paint.

  17. Please tell us what number you are...I'd love to vote for you!! Your kids are ADORABLE!!! :)

  18. Voted! {she's #111}

    I would choose the living room and then take things you learn and apply them to the kids' rooms.

    I think the special bathroom has potential and maybe she can give you a few pointers. But I think you'll get the most bang from the living room.

    Good luck!

  19. I voted for you. I hope you win. Good luck. If you lived near me, I would totally help you out with some crafting.

  20. Voted! I hope you win! : )

  21. Just voted for ya! Good luck

  22. I've been a long time follower, but when it came to the Vintage Revival makeover, I intentionally ignored my favorite blogs to make sure I voted honestly from the rooms I thought needed it the most. I TOTALLY ended up voting for you! WOW, lady- you are so brave and amazing for doing what you are doing with your house. Good luck. I hope you win!!

  23. Going to vote right now! My boyfriend bought an 80 year old house just over a year ago, and luckily things haven't been too bad, but I do know how much work they can be - and we don't even have kids! Good luck - I hope you win! :)

  24. I voted! I love old homes like yours with good bones, but so get the lack of money and time (especially with lots of little hands around). Good luck - YOU DESERVE THIS!!

  25. I voted for you! I hope you win :)

  26. I vote for you #111,You did a great job on the room . We all need someone to help us along are way. I vote for you to win. Choose this one Please

    hope you win,

  27. A few of the blogs I follow have been asking for votes, but you definitely get mine. I just bought my first house. It's not too bad, but definitely needs some work. It didn't seem like a big deal until I moved in. What was I thinking?! I live alone...all the projects and DIYs are on me to do! So, I definitely understand the overwhelming feeling of so many projects!

  28. Congrats on making it into the top 15! Totally jealous but I can't wait to see what you can create with Mandi if you win! Good luck!


Thanks for leaving a comment. I always like to know what you think of the projects I highlight!

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