If you follow along with my oh-so-average life on Instagram, you may have noticed that we welcomed a second beautiful baby girl into our lives on May 28th! Yesterday marked three weeks since little Miss Emma's arrival and we're slowly adapting to life as a party of four. There's been a few extra hours of TV and a few less hours of sleep in our days. Aaron will continue to be outnumbered by the Hess ladies and I will continue to use my new favorite/pointless hashtag, #eventhedogisagirl.
Prior to welcoming our newest Nugget, one of my biggest goals was getting the girls' rooms done. I hesitate to even use that phrase because is a bedroom every really "done"? Especially a kids room? I certainly don't think so (I DO expect to be asked for princess bedsheets or boy-band posters or something like that in the future...). So instead I will declare that they are done for now.
The blog updates are few and far between these days but believe me when I say that the work has not stopped. Whether it's cleaning out the nooks and crannies we skipped during the initial renovation or completely overhauling a new piece of our house, the project list remains as long as ever. Not to mention, being 6 months pregnant (with another little girl!) has brought on a serious urge to nest.
So thanks to a burst of second trimester energy, we tackled a piece of our house that is small in square footage but a huge center of activity: our back entryway/landing zone/mud-room-esque space. It was small, as far as overhauls are concerned, but it packed a punch. What was once a useless (and gross) part of the kitchen cabinetry now serves as a fresh and functional landing zone for keys, coats, diaper bags, and shoes.
apologies up front for the corniest post title ever...
If anyone is ever interested in building their endurance in high stress situations, I highly recommend tackling a whole house renovation. We are now three and a half months into our biggest DIY ever. The house, while on the upswing, is still a construction zone. Meanwhile, the apartment is starting to resemble a small hoard as I empty our closets and drawers into boxes.
From as early as I can remember, I always loved to decorate my bedroom. I loved how a space could visibly reflect my personality. My first foray into room decor was in elementary school. I painted my whole room (ceiling and all) a denim blue AND I left it splotchy "to look like the sky". I'm giving my younger self a major eye roll. Though my "style" was questionable at times, my mom was supportive of my creative ventures. She drew the line at my "black walls with glow in the dark paint to look like outer space" idea; good call, Mom. As a high schooler I loved my room. Looking back, it was sensory overload. Two orange walls, another hot pink, and the fourth red. Band posters, stickers, buttons, collectibles... all thrown together to create my happy place. Incase you aren't imagining it:
You wouldn’t know from its current state, but our house has come so far from where it was at the time of purchase. Sure, the house had walls, decent flooring, and some cool details. But that was it. When we bought our house we had no amenities, nothing. Since it was a vacant dwelling for the better part of six years, all utility services to the house had been disconnected, shut off, or stolen (adios, copper pipes!). I had always pictured us buying a fixer upper but I never thought that I would have to reinstate the basic amenities.
Happy Tuesday everyone! There is literally so much happening and my life is in a constant state of disarray but somehow things are getting done!
Yesterday was August 1 and our move-in deadline is fast approaching. We still cannot legally live in our house. So come Septemebr 1, we may be squatters in our own backyard. In an effort to prevent that from becoming our reality, we’re kicking it up a notch. Last night we pulled our first late night at the house as a family. Addie spent her first night in what will someday be her bedroom while I tiled like a madwoman and Aaron worked on rewiring the second floor. To obtain our Use & Occupancy, the house does not have to be “done" so much as “safe”. And we've been working closely with our borough inspector to pinpoint just what areas we have to tackle before move-in. No matter what, we will be living in some level of reno well into the winter.
Ya’ll! I am so excited because today I’m sharing a before and after(-ish) photo. Why is this so exciting? Because it means that we have finished a piece of the house enough to see a visible change! It means PROGRESS! The kind of progress that you can move into and actually LIVE IN
This past week, the Hess House saw some improvements (though move-in day is still a distant dream). The powder room wall was framed and it now sports a snazzy new pocket door. The walk-in "his and hers" closet was also framed out in the master bedroom. Upstairs on the third floor, the splotchy drywall patch jobs from a previous fix were sanded down and the carpet glue reside is almost gone- though the smell of cat pee still lingers. I see a bleach bath for the stairwell in the near future. Although the stairwell still smells, the mold in the basement has been successfully removed! Lots of steps forward… and a large step back. Curiosity got the best of me and I poked at some crumbly looking drywall. As it turns out, poking the crumbly dry wall was huge mistake. The main window in the Purple Room, I discovered, was sort of floating above what used to be wood studs. I say used to because a poor seal on the window allowed water to get in… and now it’s just a pile of rotted wood dust. Such is the reno life.
About the Author:
Tasha is a freelance artist, stay-at-home mama, and, in her husbands words, a lifestyle manager. She and Aaron are in the midst of renovating their 94 year old home while raising their sassy daughters, Adelaide & Emma.
Following along on Instagram? Look for #HessFixerUpper