Friday, March 28, 2014

Fixer Upper

Hubby standing next to 'fireplace', spring 1969

Our first home was really our own from the ground up.  We bought the land, about 2 acres in a development in the country, within the first year we were married.  It was 7 miles to get a loaf of bread.  We did not care as we were 22 and 28 when we moved into the brand spanking new custom home on Labor Day weekend in September of 1969. There were
quarry tile floors in the sunken great room and dining room.  The sunken tub in the master bath was surrounded by a brand new invention, poured marble.

Made the curtains, painted the fireplace.
I began the exciting task of decorating my new home.  With the help of a monthly magazine titled "100 Ideas Under $100" I dove in hook, lining and Singer sewing machine.  I learned to make swag drapes for our bedroom.  Lambrequins adorned the guest bath window and bath tub.  Cabinets were repainted and my own designs were added to the front.  Pictures were purchased and hung as advised by the gentleman from The Curosity Shoppe.

On the exterior not much needed to be be done except landscaping.  We bought a garden tractor with implements.  A vegetable garden was started along with hundreds of feet of flowerbeds.  We arranged a small retaining walls of rock we brought back from Missouri.   This was done in the early 1970's long before there were Lowe's or Home Depot.  Wolfe Nursery supplied the ableia, boxwood, pyracantha, weeping willow, crepe myrtle and oak trees.  Seeds for the garden and flower beds came from the local farm store of Crump's.  WalMart was not yet in North Texas.
All supplies and shopping were done on Saturdays because nothing was open on Sundays.

Photo of our first home taken in late March, 2014.  

Times changed and fear of layoffs kept my husband a little on edge.  We decided to relocate to Missouri and go in business with his folks.  It was a TV and radio repair business.  WalMart arrived about the same time we did so the little town of 5000 did not need 3 TV repair shops or 7 places to but TV.  But that is a story for another day.

After all the successes we had enhancing the new home in Texas we decided to buy an older home, a fixer upper.  I wanted the 2 story but we finally decided our furniture would not fit.  We did find a place we could add on to and update.  We started the addition before we ever even completely moved from Texas in the fall of 1975.  Wall paper was stripped. Woodwork was stripped.  Walls and ceilings were textured and painted.  Rooms received repeated face lifts.  New areas of accent wall paper were added.  All new kitchen cabinets installed in the new addition.  Cabinets stained and finished.  That was the first year those things were done.

House fixed up, not so much the owners!  Inside our second home.
We lived in that home until February 1993.  Walls were moved to make room for a second full bath.  Built in shelves were added in one bedroom after the ceiling tiles were removed.  That meant more texturing and painting.  Window treatments were made and replaced as the toddler grew to be a teen.  Repairs were made following a horrible lightning strike that blew a small hole in the front office wall.  New wall treatments for the repaired room.  The last thing we did or had done was a repair to the main bath that was to have been done soon after we moved in in 1975.  The repair was done in August before we sold the house in November of 1992.  We were in some stage of remodeling the house or the out building or the yard the entire 17 1/2 years we lived there.


Back garden, 2013
Entry to back garden, 2013
We moved into another new home in 1993.  I added all the touches to make it our/my home and garden.  There were hail storms that caused leaks.  That caused roof replacements and ceiling painting. There were the plugged drains for the air conditioner that flooded the hall.  That caused flooring to be replaced.  There was the improperly installed shower that my foot cracked one day.  That led to having to get the shower rebuilt.  The shower rebuild helped find the leaking drain that had rotted the floor joist that we had the pleasure of replacing.  Of course there is the infamous chimney that leaked from day one.  It quit leaking about 3 weeks before we left that house in October of 2013.  We had spent about eight to ten thousand dollars to fix that %KW#@J chimney and the leak damage.

Last picture made of the house in Springfield, Mo, 10/31/2013


I have no desire to live in another fixer upper or home we are responsible for maintenance.  But Husband did install a new kitchen faucet today cause I did not like the one provided in the apartment.  Hard to break old habits!

For more takes on Fixer Uppers, tool on over to Gretchen's or Ginny's.  And if you have a particularly fun story about fixer uppers, join up with The Spin Cycle!
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