OUR STAIRCASE: THE RENOVATION // WEEK FIVE

 
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Here we are at the end of week five and wow have we made progress!

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Once demo was done, the new stairs were up in just a couple of days! 
We still can't believe the transformation of the space. It doesn't even feel like the same house!
Our contractor did an awesome job at creating the winder that we wanted, too. 

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Of course, it wasn't until the drywall went up that we could really see our vision being pulled together. It looks soooo Scandinavian and modern right now without the newel, railing, trim, stain, paint, yada yada.. I kinda love it!
We are also really excited for our new casement window! Since we eventually want to replace all the windows, we styled this one as a model for the rest and to match the original 1920's style of the house. Can't wait to see it!

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Since our home is almost 100 years old, things aren't exactly straight and a tad slanty, leaving the opening square didn't seem like the best idea. To help with the visuals, we added an arch in place of where the old wall was and it's so beautiful and more than we imagined! I want to arch every opening now!
(Also, our contractor is a saint for being so patient with our house and working extra hard to make things straight.)

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We have a few more weeks ahead of work before the plastic comes down and we can start painting and staining!
I look forward to sharing the finished project and to show you what we have in mind for the space!

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OUR STAIRCASE: THE RENOVATION // WEEK ONE

 
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A little behind our original schedule, but: THE STAIRCASE RENOVATION HAS BEGUN! And, it has been moving quickly! Everyday now, I leave for work and come home to massive changes! It's so exciting!

THE PLAN:

Let's rewind a little.
As mentioned months ago, we thought the kitchen or bathroom would be the first thing to change, but after living in the house for a bit, we decided to do the biggest thing (besides the kitchen) first and not only fix the staircase, but actually re-structure it and change the angle. Crazy, right? In order to do this, we agreed to lose one of our bedrooms and also expand the living room (See more of the plan and inspo here).

Once our contractor approved the renderings from our engineer, we hit the ground running!

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BEFORE:

Here are some before photos. FIrst, from inside the front bedroom... and don't forget that half-assed closet in which the original staircase cut through...

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And from the original living room looking towards the front bedroom where the new arch is going to be between the two spaces.

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BEGIN:

Day One: I left for work and when I got home the wall was gone! I was in complete awe. I know you see this kind of thing all the time on HGTV and how opening walls makes such an impact, but WOW it really does! I can't imagine the wall ever being back there! And the funny thing is, once our contractor started to tear down the wall, he found that there was originally an opening at some point that someone had the bright idea to close! Can you believe it?

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A few days later they removed the old staircase and it got even crazier. We could walk inside the area and see the original lathe and plaster, and really smell the old house. Luckily, we haven't come across anything too weird in the walls, unlike the attic where Danny found a ton of treasures while clearing it out for our new electrical and insulation. 

Once the new stairs get put in, this left-over extra space will be a large closet - something we really lack in this house.

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Looking in from the living room now is such a weird feeling considering we slept in the front room for the last six months! It honestly doesn't even feel like the same house, and in the best way. We have started playing around with different ideas of how we will designate the spaces now (living room, dining room, etc), but we are so early on that it's hard to even envision exactly what it will be like. We are waiting until the new stairs start going in, BUT we are thinking this will be the new dining room!

I am getting really excited to finally pick paint, trim, install new lighting, and - most importantly - to eventually bring home all of our furniture that has been sitting in storage since November! 

There is still a ton of work to be done, but jumping the hurdle to get the project started is done!
Another update in a few weeks!

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OUR FIRST WEDDING ANNIVERSARY // OREGON COAST

 
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ONE YEAR MARRIED!

Holy cow that went by fast! And again, what a year it has been! (married/dog/bought house/moved to new state)

To celebrate, we decided to take it easy and do a weekend roadtrip trip down the Oregon Coast to explore more of what this beautiful new state of ours has to offer.

ASTORIA
Once I got home from work Friday evening, we piled into the van and set off west to Astoria! I've always wanted to go to Astoria - I mean because Kindergarten Cop and the Goonies, duh - but, also because I always hear about how cute it is. And well, yeah it was. I wanted to punch it a little. Steve was super excited to be back in VanLife.

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We arrived just at dusk for dramtic views of the Astoria-Megler bridge which was literally next to our hotel! We stayed at this awesome, super cute place called the Atomic Motel which is as it sounds: Mid Century / Retro! Bonus: they even offer you free beer at check-in and there's a great little breakfast and coffee every morning. Would totally stay here again and would recommend! AND they are ESA pet friendly!

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We didn't have much time in Astoria, but we made it to Fort George's Brewing, up to the Astoria column for some great 360 views, indulged in the most delicious fish 'n chips at the historic Bowpicker, and checked out Fort Stevens and the old ship wreckage. It was Steve's first time on the beach, so it was funny to see how he would act! It was so cute to see the sand between his toes! I think he liked it!

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CANNON BEACH

From Astoria we headed south to Cannon Beach, another Oregon Coast town I've been dying to visit, and to see the Haystack in real life. And wow, it's so impressive up close! I mean just look at the scale of Danny & Steve! Our friend, Rachel, referred to Steve as a mini haystack. The beach itself is very popular, full of families, dogs, kite flyers, and beach bums. You can probably sit here all day and people watch. The town itself is also a very cute, cozy little village filled with cafes, local artisans, and bed & breakfasts. It is definitely a place I want to revisit and stay at soon.

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CAPE LOOKOUT POINT

From Cannon Beach, we traveled a little more south to an area near Tillamook and Netarts called Cape Lookout Point, which  is a National Park/Beach with camping and hiking trails. They offer traditional tent camping spots as well as yurts and car/van/RV camping - so, we appropriately van camped because VanLife is the best life. 

We BBQ'd, sipped wine and beer as we walked along the beach at golden hour, and made dark chocolate s'mores. It was kind of the best, and so low-key. It was exactly what we needed.

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Since hiking is one of our favorite things to do together, we woke up early and tried out one of the many trails Cape Lookout has to offer. Although we did take a wrong turn and ended up on a longer trail (the Cape Trail instead of the South), it was a beautiful time with beautiful scenery, cool weather, and kind people. Steve joined us again in his little backpack and everyone loved it.

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I kinda started to get all gushy and sappy on our anniversary - thinking back on the events of our wedding weekend and all the feelings. Getting married is such a special time. I know it's not for everyone and that's okay, but having all your friends and family around in one place at the same time for a few days is truly a dream come true.

It was a perfect first anniversary and I am so lucky to be married to this man.
Happy Anniversary, Husband. xo

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Wedding photos by Even Keel Weddings

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