Listin’ Like a BOSS

After yesterday’s big reveal, I’m VERY excited to bring you some better pictures and a room by room breakdown of how I see the house come together. Note I said “I,” Jason and I have not discussed this. I assure you whatever projects come our way will only happen if we’re both on board. Also, they will not happen all at once, the only promise of upgrades that Jason has agreed to thus far is to repaint the entire house before we move in (praise Jesus…it’s all I ask…at this time). So without further ado, I bring you our future home:

***The Front ***
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  • CLEARLY, we need some landscaping, first up, remove the tree blocking the right side of the house
  • add flower beds
  • paint the front door red
  • upgrade hardware
  • add some planters for pops of color (the front door is obviously hidden away and we need to bring some attention). Maybe like this?
  • add some handing plants
  • fertilize the front yard for better grass
  • maybe paint the concrete of the front porch to add some drama?

Now, most of this stuff (minus the painting) probably won’t happen until at LEAST the spring. I have no green thumb, and I would really love them to live, after all.

***The front foyer***

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You can’t see much here, but on the left is some HIDEOUS wallpaper (you can see in the hall picture later), and on the right is a coat closet.

  • remove wall paper
  • paint either a sand color or a VERY light grey (to brighten things up). I’m even toying with adding wallpaper like this, but I seriously doubt Jason goes for it.
  • Will either have a gallery wall here of in the hallway (like this)
  • coat closet will either be a coat/storage closet (who know what all we have) or I would love to turn it into something like this.
  • Upgrade the light fixture. Maybe an orb light?
  • Haven’t decided about the tile…I would probably want to see house everything else comes together and that would be a very last upgrade after everything else is done.
  • add crown molding

***The Kitchen***

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(the foyer is to the right of this picture above)

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  • Paint it a light grey, but not quite as light as the foyer
  • Repaint the cabinets white. Yes, they look white in these pictures, but they’re very chipped and scuffed up
  • Upgrade the counter tops. Maybe Corian counters like this, or butcher block counters like this?
  • Get new hardware for the cabinets
  • Take the doors off the upper cabinets by the refrigerator to make them open…maybe put glass pane doors?
  • Upgrade to stainless steel appliances (this is most certainly a wish list since it’s not imperative)
  • Add backslash
  • Chalboard paint the end of the bar
  • Add pull out drawers for pots and pans and under the sink
  • add crown molding

It’s worth mentioning that these are my “inspiration kitchens” here, here, and here (!)

***Dining Room***

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It’s worth noting that the previous owners used this as the living room, but after looking at what they used for the dining room and this, Jason and I thought we needed to switch even without discussion. Done and Done!

  • Paint fireplace white (it’s so dark in here!)
  • loose the brass
  • add a focal fixture (something dangly)
  • probably paint the room a moody grey like this?
  • add crown molding

***Laundry Room***

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  • Paint…I don’t know? Maybe be adventurous and do something dark? Or go with a nice sand color?
  • Lose the Curtain
  • Maybe loose the doors on the cupboard on the right of the sink and add baskets? Maybe not….
  • Add Dramatic “backsplash” to the back of the sink (like this)
  • Upgrade hardware
  • Upgrade counter with whatever we do for the kitchen
  • Add whimsical art where hooks are now
  • Add a washer and dryer stand like this
  • Add crown molding

***Dining Room***

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  • Paint it a like neutral color…not sure what, yet?
  • probably do something with those fans..not sure what. remove them and have canned lighting in my dreams (my brother, the future electrician, just cringed 70 miles away)
  • I would love to add some built in bookshelves around the opening from the dining room to this room.
  • Add crown molding

I don’t know…other than what is listed above, this is the one room I can’t figure out how to place things? I’m interested to see how it comes together. I can’t wait to get our furniture in there and play around!

***The Hallway***

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(see the wretched wallpaper for the foyer now?)

  • Paint this with whatever color we go with for the foyer
  • add crown molding (when I say this…note that I mean nicer, chunkier crown molding)
  • If we don’t do gallery wall in the foyer, do it here

***Hall Bathroom***

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(I know…”whoa,” right?)

  • I originally HATED this tile. But Jason liked it and suggested we paint the room a subtle mint color….I don’t hate the idea. I say we go for it and live with it for a while.
  • upgrade hardware
  • Add crown molding

***Eme’s Room***

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BY FAR the room I’m most excited about!!!!!!!
Eme is only with us every other weekend and every other major holiday. So we wanted a room that completely reflects who she is while still not throwing money into a little girls room — to get the best investment, we need something she can grow in to. Eme loves the outdoors (she requested one of her daddy’s ducks be put in her room…I love how happy it makes her), art, and reading. I tried to keep those three things in mind while coming up with this design.

  • First of all, here are all my inspiration pictures for this room are here (that’s the main one), and also here and here
  • We will probably paint the room a medium grey, but with a pallet wall like this as an accent wall (behind the headboard)
  • Jason and I got each other bedding for our wedding gift so that we could register for bedding for Eme. Here is the bedding we chose and the accessories for it are here, here, here, and here
  • We already have a mattress and box spring for her room, and my mother is giving us my old bed frame that looks like this
  • On the top picture, you will see a weird nook on the left side. I originally wanted to make Eme a reading teepee like this, but with that nook there, I think something like this would be better for the space.
  • In the bottom picture you will see two closets, the left closet will be organized like this (sort of)
  • the right closet will be way more fun! I’m thinking an art center like this (I LOVE chalkboard paint!!!)
  • Add crown molding

Of course some of this can change as we get her stuff moved in and figure out arrangements – We are all about using what we have!

***Guest Bedroom/Home Office***

Yes, I will be working from home, but we still want our guests to feel taken care of, so this space will be tricky. The good news is, the desk you see below came with the house! So you can kind of get an idea of the set up!

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  • I have no idea what color I want to paint this room, probably something like the “Manchester Tan” in this picture
  • We have a queen size bed for this room, but we will eventually make a headboard for it
  • The guest bedset we registered for is here and here, so we have lots of room to play with colorful accessories (I like my work space to be vibrant)
  • Add crown molding

***Master Bedroom***

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  • As you can see, it’s definitely on the smaller side, but I think it’s cozy and perfect for us! We will put our King Bed against the wall ahead
  • Jason already has one night stand to match his bed, I would love another for a more symmetrical look
  • I have no idea what to do with that closet (there’s a walk-in closet in the attached master bath we will use). I’m thinking that since I won’t have room for my dresser, I will use this space for ORGANIZED drawer storage (I refuse to let this become a junk space)
  • not sure on the paint color again…something neutral, I will play around with swatches
  • add crown molding

***Master Bath***

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Ahh yes…return to pink, this is funny because I had a pink bathroom, almost exactly like this, growing up

  • upgrade counters on vanity
  • upgrade hardware
  • frame mirror
  • paint (no idea what color…this room needs so much work, but will have to wait…so picking out the paint color may have to wait, too. We may just put a crisp white primer on for now)
  • upgrade sink
  • upgrade toilet
  • upgrade tub (I would LOVE a soaker tub, but I have no idea if that’s even possible in this space
  • remove wallpaper
  • paint tile or change to subway tile
  • maybe change floor tile and extend to vanity area?
  • add accessories (towel rack, etc)
  • add crown molding

***Back Yard***

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The Backyard is one of the things that REALLY sold us on this house. Jason and I (and Eme) spend a ton of time outside. Our backyard is our happy place so we knew we wanted something private. Plus we have two dogs (that we love) that need a place to be dogs!

  • upgrade fan on patio (you can see it’s droopy) for a sturdier outdoor fan
  • replace chain linked fence with wooden fence
  • add some landscaping
  • fertilize grass for a fuller-greener look
  • maybe use the chain link fence to shut off a place for the dogs when we are entertaining (the area that the swing is in)
  • BUILD A FIREPIT!!! We LOVE making S’Mores when Eme is around and this is something we’ve dreamed about since day 1
  • Eventually build a playhouse for Eme here

This is a space that I’m certain will grow over the years. I can’t wait to snuggle into our backyard (that reminds me…I want a hammock)

So that’s the tour! I hope you love our home and are excited as we are. Jason and I actually really enjoy working on projects together and I cannot WAIT to make this our home! Here are some extras you may enjoy:

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  • You can kind of see the driveway is cracked. Our Realtor suggested that this is the home being old and “settling” and it isn’t any real foundation issues, but we have our inspection Monday to find out for sure (fingers crossed!). I would like to eventually have this fixed.
  • I don’t have any pictures of the garage, but it is a two car garage. There is great place for storage, and I would love to organize Jason’s tools in a space like this (don’t worry, darlin, I will make it more manly)
  • Since most of the through-traffic will be in the garage, I would also like to make a mini “mud room” in there like this (doesn’t have to be that fancy…something simple will do)

OH MY GOSH! Can we start painting now?? I’m so excited! I will be sure to post all the details on here – the good, the bad, and the ugly. In the meantime, I can be found doing the Carlton.

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Funny Story….

So here’s a funny thing about the house pictured below:Image

We bought it. And we’re moving in!

Well..technically Jason is moving in in August (along with all my stuff…love you, honey), but I won’t technically live there until after we’re married in October!

Let’s first talk about the range of emotions this has begot. First, there was an agreement between Jason and I. He wanted to buy a house, and I wanted to rent. His position was because renting was throwing away money, and for the past year, he, Eme, and I have not had a stable “home.” We need that badly. I, on the other hand, was afraid of impulse, us buying a house just to by a house and not buying a home, or that we would be broke for our first year of marriage. You have to understand, Most girls dream of getting married and having kids, I dreamed of buying a house. So this was a HUGE deal to me. We resolved our conundrum like any self-respecting couple and reached an agreement: I would be open to buying a house, but if we did not find something we could afford, that we enjoyed, that we could see ourselves living in for at LEAST 5 years (if not 10) by the time we were married, then we would rent. Compromise, right?

I will save you a LOT of details in between that point and this one. But basically we found out Jason couldn’t be on a loan because he still owned a house in Hope (panic), but then he asked me to get preapproved (calm), he estimated that I would get preapproved for $100,000ish (after looking at the houses in this range-panic), but I went and did my preapproval and was approved for both an FHA AND a conventional loan for $150,000 (calm…and yay). Then we started browsing houses and found one we LOVE in Texarkana, TX that JUST went on the market (yay!). We called immediately but a sale was already pending (panic). I noticed Jason was liking the houses in the $160,000ish range (panic….preapproval for $10,000 less). We crunch some numbers on “the house that got away” and THANK GOD we didn’t buy it. Texas be expeeensive. So we agreed that we would ONLY look in Texarkana, AR in OUR price range. Do you see the pattern of emotions here? Now insert many other conversations between Jason and I to reach a conclusion (we can afford more! What about Ashdown? etc…PANIC). Anyway, we browsed several homes that we liked and thought they might be worth looking at. But THIS house (house pictured above) stood out above all the rest! We wanted to keep our mind opened, and I kept saying “Let’s not be impulsive, we don’t have to buy now.”

Thank God,Jason convinced me that looking wouldn’t hurt. He reached out to his best friend from High School (who happened to be a Texarkana Realtor) and scheduled 5 house showings.

The boy was flawless, if he drove up and didn’t like the surroundings, he didn’t bother looking at the house (this happened twice). He wrote down pros and cons and in the end, both he and the Realtor agreed that this house was above all the rest. I took half a day to come look at it. I loved it. I immediately fell in love, I could see us making it our own and growing in it. I’m still a VERY anxious person and started into my panic phrase, but he convinced me to make an offer. Lets give a break down of the house shall we? (I do my research)

3 Bedrooms
2 Full Baths
Built in 1968
2,205 sq. feet (waaay more than the others in our range)
asking price: $144,000 (dropped from $155,000 a month ago)

Interior Features

Cable TV available
Carpet
Clothes Dryer
Dishwasher
Disposal
Fireplace
Formal Dining Room
Laundry Room
Pantry
Range and Oven
Security Features
Tile Floors
Utility Room
Vinyl Floors
Washer/Dryer Hookups

Exterior Features

Electric service available
Fence
Patio
Public Sewer Service
Public Water Supply
Storage Building

Heating Features

Central

WHOOOOOOO!!!!!

BONUS: It’s in a nice, well established, tucked away, older neighborhood (more “whoooo!”)

So the offering process didn’t go down as smoothly as I’m about to describe but for times sake here’s how it went down:

1. the very same day I saw it, I made an offer at 9:00 that night for $132,000 plus washer, dryer, and one-year warrenty

2. They counter-offered at $141,000.  (Worth noting that I found out they had bought the house in 2009 for $145,000 and then enclosed the carport into a garage)

3. I wanted to counter at $138,000, final counter. Our Realtor suggested we counter at $139,650 but ask to include washer, dryer, refrigerator, desk (I will be working from home), and deep freeze. We agreed

4. on May 28, 2013. The seller accepted the offer.

AAAHHH!!! Now we still have some things to work out, but we are set to close July 8. I will post the good pictures along with my “To-Do” list breakdown tomorrow. In the meantime, enjoy these crappy ones from realtor.com, we will call them the “teasers”:

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Yes, a fixer upper…but that’s JUST what we wanted! I can’t wait to show you the panoramic pictures tomorrow along with our plans! AAAHHHHH!!!

Pulse Point (Vol. 2)

Wedding planning has slowed down….but I want to do another pulse point..because they’re fun and therapeutic! 🙂

 

This is how I feel when someone (specifically women) tells me something three times in teh same sentence:

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This is how I feel when I make a funny joke or a bad pun and Jason doesn’t laugh:

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This is how I feel when I reach the point that I realize I am overwhelmed (PS. I never have, currently do not, and never will do cocaine):

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How I feel when someone constantly asks my opinion and I really don’t care:

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How I feel when I try to get crafty:

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How I feel when someone is being a butthead and I lawyer them:

 

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How I feel (and look) when I get a brilliant idea:

 

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How I feel (and look) when I scroll through my Facebook mini feed:

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Pulse Point

I started this blog to document my journey to marriage…but I’ve learned that after I actually DO some wedding planning…I don’t want to frick’n talk about it! At an old job, we used to have meetings called “pulse points” where you metaphorically pause to check your pulse: “How am I feeling?” “How am I doing?” “What can I do the make X go smoother?” “Where do I need help?” Although it worked VERY poorly at said job, I like the concept. Switching gears, One of my favorite blogs to follow is Neon Fresh . Girl is HILARIOUS. My favorite post she has is her “This Is How I Feel” series. Using that inspiration, I have decided to start doing that here with memes as my “pulse point.” To find some humor in reality. Enjoy:

How I feel when I call a vendor for prices, and they try to tell me what they think my wedding should be:

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How I feel when I’m trying to coordinate with 5 people to plan a simple task:

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How I feel when hundreds of wedding-related companies miraculously call me wanting my business:

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How I feel when they try:

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How I feel when they always fail:

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How I feel when “Brides-to-be” befriend me on social media, or single women try to tell me they know what I’m going through and can help me:

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How I feel when I finally talk it all out with my best friend, who was recently married and TRULY understands:

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How I feel after talking to my best friend and realizing I don’t care:

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How I feel when I’m trying to figure out what to do in place of the bridesmaids bouquets:

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How I feel when I’m trying to lose weight:

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How that is actually going:

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How I feel when people get REALLY excited about a tacky idea they have:

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How I felt when wedding dress shopping:

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How I feel when Jason and I actually have haters:

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How I feel I look to Jason right now:

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How Jason looks to me:

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How I feel now that my mother, sister, friends, hair dresser, and doctor have confirmed that my hair is in fact falling out from stress:

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How I feel when I get a brilliant idea for the wedding:

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How I feel when I realize it really doesn’t matter and it has to get done:

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How I feel when a decision is finalized, and I can mark something off my daunting checklist:

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How I feel about Pinterest giving me unrealistic expectations about wedding planning:

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How I feel after going through all the “big things” with wedding planning, maintaining a healthy relationship long distance, spending every other weekend traveling to be with him and his daughter, AND working un-paid overtime to complete an event that doubled profits:

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To be continued…..

And Progress!

So the first official wedding decision is made!!!! May I present, the Bridesmaid dresses:

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I feel like this will be appropriate for any body type (especially since my two Matrons of Honor are BOTH preggo – one due at the end of June and one due at the end of September). They will also both be breastfeeding at the time, so who knows what size they will be! I’m in love with this dress. I originally wanted floor length for a fall wedding, but this is tea length so it’s still appropriate. I’ve never seen an empire waist look bad on anyone! EXTRA bonus, I really wanted something the girls could wear again (I mean, really, $150 for a bridesmaid dress and you only wear it once? redic). Plus this dress is currently on sale for $99. WHOO! Oh, and it’s at David’s bridal, so my Matron of Honor in Houston can go check the dress out there. We have a winner! Oh wait! One more bonus! The groom likes it (do not be one of those people that tells me this wedding is all about me. I will give you a dirty look. I love that we decide on everything).

RELIEF Y’ALL!

No, it’s not a big decision, but a decision none the less. And I’m thrilled. In other news, I have two very promising venue options! FINALLY! I hope to look at them in the next coming week, fingers crossed! They are:

  • Ashley Alexander House, Scott, AR – http://www.ashleyalexanderhouse.com/
    The woman is PRECIOUS and CHEAP. She assures me that the pictures don’t do it justice (she’s 77 and is at the mercy of her niece for her website…fail.) But assured me to come out and look. She stated that she really doesn’t want to make money, she only wants to cover the cost of property taxes and preservation (hence the cheap). She said the whole weekend is ours, and we can use any of her china and silverware and decor for free! Dear lord, please let this work out. Because I did not like the pictures on the internet, but I want to believe it is better in person. If it is, then it’s the perfect place. Especially since the date we want just happens to be the only date left.
  • Crossheirs Retreat Center – http://crossheirs.org/
    Now this is in Stuttgart, and I don’t dig that, but Jason loves hunting so much that I thought I might consider it (under the condition that I get the attention that day and not the ducks and hunting possibilities…I’m needy like that). But it is beautiful, and definitely my second choice.

May the force be with me this week. Pray for us, y’all! I’m ready to get this locked down.

So this wedding….

 

 

My friend started a blog about her wedding over at http://babyalexmurray.wordpress.com/ So I thought I just might start writing about my engagement. Since I’m not even a month in and have way too much to tell, I will do this in the form of numbered points.

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1. Venue hunting SUCKS. It sucks, y’all. Hate to start this off negative, but it does. So much depends on it – the date, the detail options, family travel. I’m starting to feel like there is no perfect venue. And although I GREATLY appreciate the help, people keep repeating venues that I’ve already said “no” to. That’s my biggest complaint

2. Making it “us.” I’m sure this is frustrating for other people involved – because we have no idea what we want, but definitely know what we don’t want.

3. scheduling is killing me. I want my sister to pick out the bridesmaid dresses, but she’s on call every other weekend, and my other Matron of Honor lives in Houston. Therefore, we need a “generic” dress. But the worst….the WORST. Is it is taking up the time I spend with my fiance (who will always be “my boyfriend”). I only get to see him on weekends, and even then, every other weekend, he has his daughter and it’s all about her during those times (that wasn’t a complaint, by the way). But on those two weekends a month I actually get to be with HIM, they are spent running wedding errands 😦 It’s hard. And I find myself feeling very lonely and needy.

That was all just to get some frusterations off my chest. They’re not all bad.

1. I get to spend the rest of my life with Jason. That makes it more on the “worth it” level

2. people are very excited about our wedding…that’s cool to see.

3. Registering was fun! It was cool to see us start to build our home together. And we agreed on everything (and we both voiced our opinions). So much, that we went ahead and bought our bedding as a wedding gift to each other. That was very cool, I love that we have the same taste, and I don’t feel like we’re off-balance.

OH. and we have a wedding website: http://www.bussellross.ourwedding.com Check us out!