Looking for ideas to transform rooms in your home? Here is our home’s journey with a little before and after house tour.
Remember this place?
If you have been following me for a while you know that 16 years ago we left Texas and packed up everything that we owned into two moving vans and followed our hopes and our dreams to a far away land called Kentucky.
And somewhere along the way I fell in love with a farmhouse.
We remodeled this house from the tip of the roof to floors down below. We removed walls and added a new roof and took down the wallpaper from all the rooms and painted floors and ripped up years of carpet until every room felt like home.
We had some stuff happen with our extended family. Stuff that was overwhelming. Stuff that scared us. Stuff that sat us down and had a talk and got all serious on us and told us that we might want to think about being closer to home.
Our family needed us to show up and be counted.
And suddenly, Kentucky was too far away.
So six years ago—almost to the day—we jumped back to Texas. Right back to the house I grew up in. Right back where we belonged.
So in honor of our “houseversary” I wanted to take a look back where we started with this home and where we are now.
Here’s all the befores and all the afters.
Before and After House Tour
Before I walk you through the rooms in the house and tell the story of how we moved, I wanted to start way back. Waaaaaay back.
Back at the very beginning.
The house we live in—the house we “jumped back” to in Texas was built in 1908. This is a picture taken with the original exterior of the home. There was a double porch on the front with columns that extended all the way to the top of the roof and the front porch extended all the way across the front of the house.
And yes. This is Texas. Apparently Texas had a snowstorm that year.
Here’s the front of the house after it was remodeled in the 1950’s.
The porch was shortened and only extends over the front door.
The new columns were shortened to about half the previous size and are square now instead of round.
There’s an air vent on the roof now instead of the roof extending out over the porch.
And here’s the house today.
We added black shutters and gutters and a new black roof. We took off the air vent from the front of the house.
The landscaping beds have also been extended on both sides of the front of the house and we painted the brick gray.
Back Door Entry Before
Back Door Entry After
I still remember when started talking about moving.
What? US MOVE? That wasn’t in the plan. Kentucky was our forever home. We had a farmhouse and a gatehouse and a business and acres of land and countryside and stars and hay bales and winding country roads.
And for years I had written a blog about our farmhouse and all that goes with it.
Living Room Before
Living Room After
I wasn’t sure if I was ready to give it all up.
I put on an apron and asked myself what Laura Ingalls would do if Carrie and Mary and Grace and Ma and Pa needed her.
View To The Back Door Before
View To The Back Door After
And so, just like Laura, I’m coming home.
This is the home of my childhood.
This is where I grew up.
I have thrown open this backdoor more times that I can even count.
Dining Room Before
Dining Room After
Remember when my mother sold it?
You can read all about moving and my wedding dress and dear Abby and a mirror here.
This is the house where I met my future husband who wasn’t even my boyfriend yet on the back porch.
This is the house where he first kissed me goodnight.
This is the house I stood in front of the bathroom mirror on my wedding day.
This is the house where I brought my children home from the hospital.
This is the house where they stamped their tiny hand prints in the driveway when my mother and father had a new driveway poured.
This is the house where I’ve laughed and loved and giggled and shared more joy than a person should be allowed in a lifetime.
This is my home.
Living Room Before
Living Room After
I thought it was lost forever.
I thought I’d never walk the halls again.
I thought I’d never celebrate another Christmas or Thanksgiving or birthday or family breakfast here.
Until we started talking about moving back to Texas and I randomly called up the new owners and asked them if they would sell it.
I did it on a whim. I had no idea what they’d say. I had no idea if they’d even answer the phone.
It wasn’t on the market.
They didn’t really know me and as far as I knew they weren’t planning on selling it.
But I stepped out on faith and dialed the phone.
When the current owner answered the phone, I explained who I was and told her my story and told her we might be moving back and that I had been in a relationship with that house since add-a-bead necklaces were a thing. Would she? Could she? Might she be interested in selling it?
And to my surprise.
To my joy.
To my almost fainting on the phone at that moment….
….she said yes.
CAN YOU EVEN BELIEVE IT?
SHE SAID YES.
And then? This new chapter of our lives and the blog and our story began.
Here in these rooms where it all started.
So many rooms.
So many chapters.
Every day I’m walking in all the steps that I’ve walked in before.
Like this space.
This was my father’s office.
I can remember sitting in this room and pouring out my heart to him. I’d tell him the troubles of the world and he’d put down his papers and push his glasses up on top of his nose and lend me a sympathetic ear and a funny story and all the cares of the day would melt away.
When I walk in here now and squint, I can almost see him smile.
His heart is in every corner of this room.
This room is where I write my books and post my posts and share my stories and tell my tales within these four walls.
When I look back at the six years that we’ve lived in this house again, I can’t believe it. It seems like a minute and a lifetime all at the same time. I am the keeper of the memories. I am the keeper of all the chapters that have gone before.
Thank you for being here. Thank you for following along. Thank you for taking a seat next to me on this amazing journey we call life.
I wish I could type the tears running down my face as I look back at these pictures. I wish I could type my joy. I wish could type the mix of emotions tiptoeing across my heart.
But I can’t.
So I’ll say it the only way I know how.
We are finally home.