Things are slow going with the move here, but I'm starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I've also realized that when it's your house, it really does take a lot of work, dedication, MONEY, and time to get it exactly right. Originally, I was hoping/expecting to have the place pretty much ready to go by Thanksgiving, but I now see that that was just plain crazy thinkin'. Realistically, though, I can have the entryway and dining room done by mid November, so that is my new goal.
First up, the entryway. It's been painted and the flooring has been replaced (see below). When we first saw our place, it had wood flooring. Top corner unit with LOTS of light and hardwood floors?! We were sold. After our offer was accepted, our HOA contacted our realtor and informed him that according to their rules and regulations, the wood flooring was installed illegally, and once we moved in, the wood would have to be replaced with carpet. We were SO bummed. It was almost a deal breaker for us. I emailed my buddy, CEVD, and asked her if carpet was the end of the world (have you seen her home?... she would know). In the end, with her help, we came to the conclusion that all the pros far outweighed one of the only cons, so we continued with escrow. We worked out a deal with the seller for the inconvenience, and started carpet shopping. Guys, there are a ton of beautiful carpets on the market these days. Who knew, right? We picked a gorgeous berber carpet with a subtle striped pattern. Done and done.
We picked the perfect grey, and now we just need to finish up the space. That horrible light fixture will be replaced. I picked up some baskets from Ikea to house our shoes and keep them organized. Now, onto the next step. We want out entryway to be welcoming and functional. At first, I thought that a bench over the baskets would not only look great, but would work well as a shoe station, if you will. It turns out, we really love our carpet and want to take care of it as best we can, so our home is now a shoe-free home. BUT, when Joe mentioned he wanted a place to put mail, the bench didn't seem exactly right. I toyed with the idea of placing another small basket on top of the bench (kind of like this, but swap out the pinecones for mail and miscellaneous paperwork), but with a kid who will get into anything and everything, I'm worried that might be the stupidest idea possible.
The next thought was to place some sort of small and narrow table over the baskets. We'd lose the convenience of having a place to sit when we put on and take off our shoes, but a table would provide perfect out-of-cheech's-reach surface space for much more than just mail. We do just stand now while we put on our shoes, and I guess it isn't too difficult, but will it be a total annoyance when we have guests over? I mean, if we're planning on asking our friends and family to be shoeless when in our home, I want to make it as comfortable for them as possible, you know?
So those are the options, and I keep going back and forth between the two. They're both super functional, but also kind of troublesome in their own ways. Aesthetically, I like them both, so that's definitely not an issue. What I do know is that I don't want to crowd the space. After living in an apartment that was WAY too small for this family for far too long, I am really enjoying all the square footage we have. Now I'd love to hear your thoughts... I could really use your insight on this one.
Oh, and I'll make sure to show you before and after pics once we truly have an "after".