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In My House

New Front Porch – Details

Our deck was in desperate need of repair for the last bazillion years, but it was always being pushed to last on our to-do list. When the pandemic hit and we were all stuck at home, I think it drove Aubrey over the edge to see the carpet in tatters daily, so he ripped up the carpet in one foul swoop and we were left with a plywood deck – which was actually, an improvement over the carpet.  This isn’t the most design-inspiring post but I wanted to post it none the less, because I found it ridiculously hard to find simple front porch ideas in my search.

We had our handyman help us out with this project because we were juggling my work, Aubrey’ work and Oscar’s home school, so it was way easier to just get the manual labour outsourced. What we did was leave the plywood base, that was already there, and then lay 2×4’s over top, starting with under the door (see above) so that it all evened out as we went left to right.

We lay another 2×4 board at the front of the deck, running parallel to the house so that the boards didn’t just get “cut” at the end and we don’t see exposed end cuts.

The border piece I mentioned above, hung over the top of the deck ever so slightly, so that the front panels (that you see from the street) would be recessed. We installed these new vertical boards in the front and they were the same 2×4 boards as on the top.

Lastly. we added a final detailing piece above the vertical pieces. This was again, a 2×4 board, but we had it ripped so it was slightly less wide, so that it wasn’t as thick as the other pieces.

That’s it! I mean, it’s a super easy design, but gives you some points to consider if you do a porch. Also, I did weed between the stone pathway after the photos were taken. But it wasn’t a huge priority at the time of the photo. 🙂

In Renovations

Basement Updates Part 3

And the wall build (from this side at least) is complete. If you go through the archives you’ll see the progression of this space. But going back to the verrrry beginning of the home reno you can see the left hand archway in the below picture, is the area that we filled in.


We’re already hanging out down here WAY more, as it’s nicely separated from the hustle of the main floor. The countertop was a surprisingly easy decision after we researched quartz, or custom pieces (traditional counters for a kitchen). It wasn’t worth the investment, and I was going for a more “chillaxed” vibe down here anyway, so unfinished wood was in my sights, specifically the whitest wood I could find (that was affordable).

We went to Lowes and I decided Poplar had the right tones I was looking for. A single piece of wood wasn’t big enough for the cabinet top, so we had to find two pieces that I felt seamlessly worked together. This took a bit of time as some pieces were yellower than others or, had big knots in them.

Lowes isn’t the best at cutting wood to size according to Aub, whereas Rona is way more helpful. So Aubrey took the wood to Rona, to get them cut so that they would simply fit ontop of the cabinet perfectly.

Since the space felt more “done” now, we hung my Bad Guy Print. 

To remind you of how the space started originally when we first started …..

I’ll show you the updates on the other side as it gets completed! xo

In Interior Design/ My House/ Renovations

Updating the basement to function better….

It's funny how houses change over time. Or perhaps it's more of a thing with smaller homes, where as family needs shift, kids get bigger, interest change, it's a necessity to find ways to readjust our homes to accommodate the changes. Over the holidays, I managed to keep a pretty good handle on the "stuff" in the house, but even so - it became apparent to me that we could make better use of space in the home in order to function better, have more places to hang out as a family or, when friends were visiting and a place to  store the "stuff" that needs to be here.

I was standing in the basement just before Christmas and wondered why none of us hung out down there. I mean, I didn't even like hanging out down there, even though we had an AMAZING couch (The Willow - I highly recommend it) I knew we were not using the space properly but I could never figure it out, until that day. And I realized in the name of "open concept" for the basement, we had dead space that wasn't being used properly at all and it was actually making the basement feel confused - was it an office or a family area. Take a look through the basement archives, as it may help you understand the layout slightly better.

If you take a look at this picture below taken at one stage of the basement's decorating. My office is at the back, and I put a cabinet to divide the office from a TV room area. To the right of the cabinet was an opening that looked to the staircase...

Now, we rarely sat down here as we looked at these openings to the staircase and it was just awkward. We had a TV on a pullout arm which I wrote about here but to be honest, it was heavy and more of a pain than I had hoped. I decided, a few days before Christmas as family and family hangout time was on my mind, was that what we needed to do was close in this opening and create a wall, for a TV to hang on it, AND, behind it, build a closet, to store our every-growing everyday "stuff". To show you an overview of the basement I did a quick sketchup of the basement. The first picture is what it was, and the lower one is the proposal.

Aubrey was totally on board, and started right away. I'll post more in the upcoming posts but here is Aubrey starting - which I show to give you a sense of the opening size and how it was a wee bit of a lost space in the basement.

More coming soon....