photo Whaling-City-Cottage-8-2015_zpsoygeotsf.jpg

tour of the new/old house

We moved!  Only about a mile but holy crap, guys.  Buying a house while selling one and the emotional upheaval of leaving home is HARD.  Duh, Erin , you’re probably saying and I swear we tried to prepare ourselves for how hard it would be to leave our first home.  The one we nestled our babies into, the cozy one with great vibes that we fixed up.  We’re a family of comfort junkies and homebodies – this is not our jam.

While we’re hopeful about this next step and know it’s the right decision in the long run, it was bittersweet to leave the old house.  Not to the mention the sick irony that we won’t get to enjoy our first winter with insulated walls.  Shudder.  But we wish the new owners all the best and hope they’ll be as happy there as we were.

(The “new” powder room….yikes)


Now….the new/old house!  It’s younger than our previous one – middle aged rather than an octogenarian – but there’s a lot of New England-y old house potential.  It’s twice as big, has a den, a fireplace in the living room, a screen porch, a small mud room and a 1950’s finished basement with a bar that Don Draper would back someone up against.

But given that basically everything in the house needs to be updated and we’re still homesick for the old house, you can imagine we’re in the regret phase of things right now.  Everyone keeps telling us we’ll get there, that little by little it’ll feel like home, so I’m trying to latch onto that.  It’s the advice we give the kids and it’s what friends have said to me as I’m sobbing on their shoulder in our dark mudroom since the overhead light doesn’t work because mice ate the wire and I don’t want the kids to see me cry and it’s dark at fricking 3pm and it’s the holidays….

So yeah, I’m an irrational basket case right now, which is ridiculous because we are so blessed, with so much to be thankful for (our health, a roof over our heads, good jobs, etc) but the fear and tears aren’t logical, they’re emotional.  So a puffy-eyed tour guide is what you get.  After I’ve potentially scared you off….who wants to take a peek at the new digs?

*Caution – these pics are ROUGH.  Boxes, cleaning products, green carpet, tissues, pizza boxes….so go easy on me*


The chinoiserie mural in the dining room is mind boggling!  It’s so unique but – and I’m not sure if you all noticed this – it’s freaking pink.  Blerg.  Needless to say my vision for our future dining room had nothing to do with a pink pagoda scene, so I’m on a fence about the longevity of this quirky gem.  How long do I pay homage to it’s fabulousness before succumbing to the urge to do something more our style, like navy grasscloth?  Not that I can afford that shit but I’m going to try faking the look with Ralph Lauren’s Indigo Denim line, which is mildly terrifying since I’ve never used those crazy brushes before.  For those of you calling the design police on me right now for even thinking of desecrating the pink chinoiserie,  fear not – nothing is happening in this room until we replace the windows and put down hardwood floors.  There’s only subfloor under the funky green carpet.


There’s also wallpaper everywhere in the house!  Most of which isn’t our style and needs to come down.  Unfortunately, we suspect the walls are plaster which will complicated things a bit.


Here’s the kitchen in all its dated horror.  Ideally I’d tackle this room, like, yesterday.  We need a functional, efficient kitchen NOT filled with mouse poop….which this ain’t.  As far as a bigger ticket item goes,  this might get moved up the list, depending on how long we can cope.  I tend to morph into Gordon Ramsey when there’s chaos in the kitchen.


Who wants more pink?  Everybody?  Here you go.  The Pepto-tastic main bathtoom.  (The pink tub is outside of the frame here….sorry, you’re not missing much).


While some lovely Instagram buddies have not gagged upon seeing this room, let me just say that you’re all very pretty and I’m stroking you hair but Oh. Honey. No.  Trust me, the nostalgic awe wears off in about 5 minutes.  This bathroom is DISGUSTING.  My hands are raw from trying scrub the living snot out of it and still….no dice.  Time for immediate gratification Plan B.  I’m painting the tile.  Just to put a barrier between us and that grout until we can renovate.  The pink is not nearly as offensive as the black, molded grout.   There are also  issues with the layout too.  The separate tub and shower leave no room for a double vanity, which we really want since this is the only bathroom upstairs.


The den has this amazing green toile wallpaper which we’ll keep.  The built-ins aren’t super functional because there’s not a spot for an actual desk but we can probably hack one out of there.  Not sure yet what this room will function as….office/lounge/reading room?


One note about the upstairs: the previous owners put laminate hardwood over the original oak floor.  (Why????)  We can see it in the closets and in June’s room and it looks good so we can’t figure out why the fork they put laminate down or what shape the underlying oak is in.  But me and my crowbar are gonna get to the bottom of this mystery.


The master bedroom is ginormous – about twice the size of our old one – but it’s also the coldest room in the house so I’m pondering way to cozy it up.  Leaning towards putting painted horizontal planking on the walls and obviously jacking up the floor covering situation, either with rugs or wall-t0-wall.  I have popsicle toes.  It’s a cold cave so any buffer would help.


The living room has a fireplace, which we’re really excited about, although it needs a little face lift.  Amp up the mantle and say goodbye to the 80’s green marble surround.



We’re so grateful that we could pull off this move to a bigger house in a nicer neighborhood but we’re also overwhelmed and sad at leaving our old house.  We went from a cozy house in a not-so-great neighborhood to the opposite.  It will take us a while to feel at home here while we fix things up.

For those of you interested in the gory, pink-toilet-chucked-out-a-window details of the renovation nightmare process, I’ll be documenting it all on the blog.  Stay tuned!






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  1. […] along with things and recently started giving both of our vintage bathrooms a face-lift!  We have two very colorful vintage tiled bathrooms in this house.  I planned to give the pink bathroom a make-over for One Room Challenge this fall […]

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