Our Historic Home Renovation

So, we did a thing. But first, a little back story:

We moved to Roanoke, VA almost 1 year ago and went on the frustrating journey of house hunting for about six months.┬áThe thing about Roanoke is that while it is full of history and beautiful historic homes, the amount of neighborhoods are actually kind of small. For us, finding a home was contingent on the right neighborhood. We wanted to live in a family friendly area, close to downtown where Charlie works, with sidewalks, and a flat yard. This is actually much more difficult to find than we thought. But it was important to us to be in a walkable neighborhood, to have an outdoor space where Wyatt could play and explore without rolling down a hill. And we really wanted to stay close to Charlie’s work so his limited time outside of work wasn’t taken up with a commute. We also love when he can come home for lunch when he has a chance. We cherish the time we have together so having a twenty minute commute wasn’t an option.

After a while we found the perfect house! It was a 100 year old home with plenty of square footage and a HUGE backyard. It was in a fantastic neighborhood too. It needed a lot of work but that didn’t scare us- for us it was a chance to create something that was just ours from a piece of history. Well, turns out, that house was not meant for us. Our contract fell through so we were back to the beginning.

While we were searching and scouring Zillow and Realtor all day every day we saw this house post but kind of blew it off. It was too small and honestly, looked a little scary! But when our contract fell through we decided to just check it out. Why not? What does it hurt to look? When we walked through we were surprised by how much we liked it. And so we decided to take a chance. And this week we close on this little gem. It was built as a house for railroad workers in 1905 so it has that history that we want and it’s in a neighborhood we love. Now, brace yourself for these photos- this house is in rough shape. But it has great bones and so much potential. Throughout the next few weeks I will give you updates on our renovation and decorating so stay tuned!


Is there a house behind all of that foliage? Sadly, this is an improvement as Charlie has already snuck over and pulled some weeds up.

IMG_1599IMG_1601I told you it was scary! The door is padlocked and the porch is a mess! But how gorgeous is that window?


This is a very classic staircase in these old homes. I love the details!


Dining room that opens into the living room. All the way to the left is a window that faces the back yard. We will be opening that to create a door onto a back deck.


This kitchen is by far the biggest we’ve seen. These old homes have TINY kitchens. They just didn’t need a lot of kitchen space back then, I guess. We are so excited about the potential this kitchen has. And big windows!


Looks sketchy, huh? Bonus is there is an updated shower in there too.


Well hey there scary basement! We are finishing the basement to create a playroom, office for Charlie, and laundry room.


You GUYS! They PAINTED the wood floors. That’s right, they PAINTED ORIGINAL HARDWOOD FLOORS! Who does that?!


Original clawfoot tub=beautiful.


And that is why we fell in love with this house. This only shows half of the size of the yard. Beyond those trees is even MORE yard. I was going to get pictures but I saw something moving and didn’t want to get into a raccoon fight. Despite many delays and lots of hiccups, we are excited to get this renovation under way.

Learn more about our awesome neighborhood Old Southwest.

Savanna Graduated!

I have my last kindergartener, y’all! Savanna graduated from Pre-K yesterday and boy was it cute! She wasn’t supposed to sing us any of her songs before yesterday but of course she did and we almost knew every word when they sang it on stage. She was so excited to get her diploma and to get flowers. I gotta tell ya, this child gave us a run for our money.

At the beginning of the school year, I was so nervous that she wouldn’t be as advanced as the other kids. She wouldn’t sing her ABCs all the way through and couldn’t really articulate her speech as well as the other four year olds. I remember going to my first Parent-Teacher conference and thinking about what they would tell me. And guess what? I was all in my head for nothing! She was actually right in line with every other kid there. She can now sing her ABCs, count over 20, tell me about habitats and planets, talk to me about her favorite president (Andrew Jackson, because there is a boy in her class that used to be her boyfriend named Jackson), etc. I’m so proud of her! I’m eager to see how she will do in Kindergarten. I just know with Savanna, her problems always seem difficult but when it comes time to, she is a star! She works hard to understand things that don’t come easy for her and it’s one of her best qualities. In a lot of ways, I still baby her because she is my youngest but she is working so hard to keep up with her sister.

Savanna, I hope you enjoyed your 2 1/2 hour days this year because they are now going to turn into 7 hour days. I hope that you savor this year and pray that you remember it when you grow older.

End of the Year survey:

Favorite color: Pink, purple, blue, and purple and pink. Light pink, dark pink, blue, purple, and purple.

Favorite food: Caesar salad with extra cheese

Favorite thing in the world: dancing

Favorite person on the planet: Ms. Powell

One Wish: to play dolls with you later

What do you want to be when you grow up? I wanna be a cheerleader at the football games AND a police officer.

Favorite place to go: Target

(The boy beside her in the middle, is her “Taco” friend because he loves Tacos)

By the way, the teacher may look similar to you because she was also Madison’s Pre-K teacher. She shaped Madison into becoming an excellent student and I’m so privileged to have had her twice now.