I Had A Delightful Dream To Restore This Relic…

It’s been a crazy fun year and I’m grateful for and proud of the project I’ve been working on!
One Year later, after a great summer season, my house looks fresh, bright and welcoming!
This poor house was so overgrown!
The new landscape is much cleaner and easier to maintain!
The Aspen Tree is still here but,
the front looks otherwise pretty different.
The side yard between my neighbor and I…
looks better with a cedar fence and gate, Breeze material and filled in grass.
It’s hard to see the cedar garden boxes on the right. And impossible to see the gate behind the volunteer tree the contractor is walking through.
Ah, there’s the gate! And a nice clean walkway under the cedar arbor.
And the front door must have been original! Weeds were growing through the concrete step under the door and into the house.
More welcoming! And interesting to look at, from the street.
The back door was also in poor shape.
The new slider is more open, let’s light into the house and is so much prettier.
This is the back porch, but this pic was taken around 2011, before the garage came down. It had plywood paneling on the bottom and screen on the top.
No more plywood! I replaced only the necessary supports with Cedar posts and opened it all up. And a new shed shares the original garage space with a courtyard seating area.
I liked the garage, which had cool original wood siding, but it was so old! The back yard was neglected and overgrown. (pic taken around 2008)
Ahhhh…. Cleaner and low maintenance! Perfect for me!
Straight view of the original back patio.
Today, an Oasis in the City!
Amazing how different it looks now!
I want to hang out here!
The far side of the back patio had 2 different types of fencing between the neighbor and I. Redwood, which turned into chainlink. My neighbor also looked right into my patio from their back door. Awkward for everyone!
I added taller Cedar fencing from the alley to the front sidewalk and everyone is happier! Plus, I hung some outdoor curtains all the way around the patio, giving both of us privacy that can be adjusted.
The back patio concrete was poured with an angle on the left side, starting at the house and ending at the tree.
I extended the concrete to square up the patio which added extra square footage.
One of the best parts of this 893 square foot house is the patio and outdoor living space. I knew this space should be the heart of the house when I first saw it in 2005. I didn’t however, think I would live here 14 years later and make it into what I imagined it could be!
This space is so comfortable and serene. The breeze flows through the patio, keeping it cool. Ceiling fans move the air and the curtains float. Mmmm.
This is what my life looked like in August 2018, 1 year ago.
This is what it looks like today! Rocco is comfortable here too!
The old garage concrete pad with weeds growing out of the cracks.
Same spot, but now it supports my shed! Clean gravel walkway, courtyard and cedar arbor overhead.
I love how organized garden boxes can make your yard. After some clean up and a new irrigation system…
First year gardens. It’s hard the 1st year trying things out and making adjustments as needed. I’ve read that gardening teaches patience and my the case, it’s true! Every year after, becomes a game of what will come back again and eventually you have a mature garden.
Walking through the side gate, this is what you’d see ahead. This is my main entrance. Lovely!
Now this looks like a place I need to explore more!
Same view, to the left, Ugh!
I even got some extra shade from the shed, making the patio more protected. And honestly, the shed is such a focal point, it makes the whole yard seem like a stage set.
I haven’t done as much in the inside, but I’ve done some things and I have plans for more.
I added A/C, fresh paint, lots of cleaning and a new front door.
The arch on the left goes into the kitchen. I replaced the kitchen windows that you see on the left, with a slider door into the courtyard.
It really opened up the kitchen, brought light into the house and now, I walk right onto the courtyard from the kitchen. This was a huge change that made this house feel more updated.
This fun corner of the living room gives the occupant a nice view of the front yard.
I made a cozy seating area with a thick shag rug to give it texture.
A closer view of the arched wall between the kitchen and living area, where I added a new slider door.
I’m planning to take this wall down between the living room and kitchen. This space is the main living space in the house and during the winter, where I spend most of my time.
I’ll lose the upper cabinets and keep the base cabinets. I want to open up the room so it feels bigger, brighter and warmer having the living and cooking space connected.
I’ll remove the weird soffit above the cabinets to open the room up, refinish the existing base cabinets, add rustic support beams, new tile backsplash, new countertops and I’m having a shelf cabinet built…
to match the cabinet you see here, below the windows. As you can see, I need more storage space and I’ll put the new cabinet to the right of the windows. It’s tall and fits the space between the windows and the back door.
Me, happy to be at this point of my project and enjoying my simple life.
I love my newly remodeled space! This project has been so fun because I get to do what works for my lifestyle today. It’s customized for me. And I’m so happy living here.
Happy Anniversary, house!

To Tell The Story Of The Most Valuable Garden Shed

The back side of the original garage, taken down in 2012.
I bought this house in 2005. I lived in the carriage house for a year and a half while I worked on the property. This is a pic of the original back yard behind the garage.
Although I had tenants in this house at the time, I tried to clean up the yard and make it usable.  Better than it was.
The original back porch was semi-enclosed with painted plywood and screen on the top. I also inherited some fabulous lava rock.  See the wire fence between the houses?
My first attempt to clean up the yard with plastic edging, grass seed and mulch.
Fast forward 11 years to 2016, after I took down the garage and added garden boxes in the yard and removed the painted plywood and screen from the back porch.  I’ve had 
long term tenants in this house since I bought it 14 years ago.
I took the garage down in 2012 because it wasn’t structurally sound. I left the concrete pad.
September 2018 I had a shed built to accommodate my garden supplies and storage.
I used half of the original concrete pad for the shed.
I considered using metal “patches” on the side of the shed, but ended up only using mtetal on the roof. I’ll use the same material for the roof on my back porch.
The white paned door came from the carriage house in the back. I love the shed and how rustic it is. And I definately need the storage as I don’t have a garage and my basement will be remodeled at some point in the near future.
This large barn door is great for accessing the shed. I had a concrete ramp built under this door so I can wheel my wheelbarrow in and out of the shed, as necessary. Another ” Smart girl idea”!
Because I have short term rentals, I needed storage for supplies in addition to my garden supplies. I had three pine shelving units I picked up at Goodwill a few years ago and secured them onto the back wall for organization.
As you can see, I needed and used this space up very quickly. Now if I can keep everything this organized going forard!

Here you see Roofing, Gutters and service Cables…

Now that the painting is done, I’m waiting for my Gutter guy to install the new gutters. Winters in Englewood are pretty mild, but as you can see we do get snow. See how the melting is running down the patio roof, pooling on the ground below? Lovely!
Mud where the snow melts on my walkway from the driveway to front door. I had a tree service come and trim my trees in the back yard and grind out a few old stumps, using a big grinder on wheels. They did a great job of navigating the machinery through the yard, but left some tracks in the mud.
The patio roof is prepped for the metal roofing. However, when the accumulated snow melts on the roof, it drips onto the patio. Ugh! I used a piece of drip edge to divert it away from my slider door.
More than 1 leak. I got word that the metal roofing has arrived and have my contractor scheduled tomorrow to install it. Yes!
Gutters will take care of this problem.
There’s an ice rink behind the shed.
I also had the internet and satellite service companies come and reattach the cables to the house after the siding went up. Unfortunately, an old service box was reattached after the siding and paint went on. I took it down and will touch up the spot with paint.
I moved all the utility boxes to a new spot on the house and had all of the boxes painted to match the house. I may have a cover built over them to better hide them, but I like this spot better than the back porch. I may put a planter in front of them too, to minimize.
All the wires are right there, under the door. I’ll bury them under the Breeze material to protect and hide them. I also will rework the flagstone steppers in front of the door to make a landing- hopefully keep inside cleaner and give the entry some visual appeal.
All these little things are small, but make a huge difference in the overall look and flow of the property. Inspection complete for today!