About a week or so ago I was inspired by Compass, a technologically savvy real estate company based in NYC, to see if I would be interested in participating in a project entitled Starter Stories.
They were asking bloggers to share stories about starting out and how to make a place your own, and they wanted to know if I had any stories or ideas on the subject.
I wanted to participate, but didn't know where I would start or what I would share.
Since being married, my husband and I have moved 7 times so far.
Each place we have been in we have tried to make 'our own', but we weren't at most of those places long enough to do too much.
I'm so glad this project got me thinking though, because I started looking through old pictures and it brought back so many wonderful memories of our first home.
Here is a picture of our home on the left during building, and on the right was 5 years later when we put it up for sale.
We accomplished so many things in this home, and really made it our own, but one of our biggest accomplishments was this built-in entertainment center.
My husband and I had been married for about 9 months when we found this new community being developed.
We felt it was right for us and signed the paperwork on a 3 bedroom 2 bath house.
We were so excited!
After months of waiting for the building process to be completed, we were able to move in.
Going through this particular builder we weren't able to make any changes to the layout or anything.This is a picture of the entrance into the family room area.
To us it was pointless. It was the best spot for a tv, but we couldn't really put it in front of the door.
I remember telling my husband that we were just going to build an entertainment center there.
When I was younger, my family moved a lot as well, and whenever we made it to a new place my dad would start building shelves to organize and store things. My mom was also very crafty, always sewing or cross-stitching, so it was just inevitable that I needed to build or craft something!
We first removed the door and trim, and then took out the drywall inside the closet to get to everything behind it.
I still remember my husband taking the first swing at the wall. I think he was just nervous to cause so much damage to our new home :)
We had a thermostat, a return air vent, two outlets, and a doorbell that needed to be moved.
After the drywall was out we cut the vent and took out all of the 2x4 pieces of wood.
We had a copy of the blueprints and had made sure beforehand that none of the 2x4s were crucial to the structure.
We cut new holes on the side of the wall (where the stairs are), and attached new duct work going down and over that direction instead.
One of my brothers also rewired and moved the thermostat and doorbell to the stair side as well.
He also drilled all the holes you see so we could move the shelves up and down.
So we had three bottom cabinets/shelves, one main area in the middle for the tv, and the top shelf for decor items.
In the middle you can kind of see an outlet my brother added, and the sides kind of slant in.
We did that on purpose because the return air vent went down behind one side, and we wanted it to look even.
The middle shelf was wood, and the two side shelves were a plexiglass type material.
I simply cut to rectangle shaped pieces of oak, then glued some trim around the outside edge to give it a slight design, and added door handles.
You can also see the return air vent and thermostat by the stairs to get a better idea of where they ended up.
Thanks for reading!