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I played Ultimate Frisbee in college so I would love to start this post with a quintessential end zone layout picture to represent the only meaning of layout that ever used to be important to me. Unfortunately, I have no such picture to share. NOT because it was never captured on film. I was never able to fling my body horizontally forward at top speed. I would have loved to! I guess the kinesiology major in me could spot a contraindicated exercise from a mile away. More likely to cause harm than good.

Regardless, I have a new found appreciation for another kind of layout these days. I love a good house layout so I decided I’d share ours:

upstairs floorplan

Downstairs (as it was when we moved in in 2013):


Not Yet “Afters”

Today we are celebrating our one year house-iversary!
Seasons of House

One year ago today we woke up early, signed closing paperwork, moved two U-hauls worth of furniture, cleaned the condo we had been renting, made a quick Home Depot trip, and started unpacking. My favorite memory of the day was in the evening when my parents brought over Thai food from our favorite local restaurant and we ate at the dining room table surrounded by boxes. It was dusk, so every neighbor who walked by had a clear view into our living and dining room through the big bay window. We waved at everyone who stopped to stare.
Clear View

We thought our one-year anniversary was the perfect time to show you around upstairs. Both where we started and where we are now. Big thanks to Christine Rich ( who gave us permission to use her pictures so you can see some “Befores” of our home. Most of the rooms in our house have come a long way since we moved in but we aren’t ready to call any of our rooms done. Trust me, there is a lot we are simply tolerating at the moment, but I’ll share all the rooms with you anyway:

Exterior Before

Living Room:
Living Room Before

Dining Room:
Dining Room Before

Kitchen Before

Bathroom Before
Curtains x2

Office2 Before

Guest Room:
Guest Room Before

Master Bedroom:
Our Room Before

We still have a loooooong way to go but we are excited with how far we have come in our first year as homeowners. We can’t wait to spill the beans on our basement renovation. I wonder what changes this year will bring.

**We now have a “Home” tab up above so check back to see our progress.



John and I closed on our first home May 30th, 2013. We would like to share our journey in home ownership as well as any other family members we can convince to join in 😀

The healthy mutant real estate market in the suburbs of DC means that even deep pockets translate into small space. And because we only have the latter we have to work doubly hard to decorate on a budget. We are working with a lot of hand me downs and freecycle items at the moment as well as DIYing when we can.

In order to purchase a home in our desired neighborhood we had to take on a mortgage at the high end of our approved loan qualification, which just about anyone will tell you not to do. Including us! But from the very beginning we had a plan that would allow us to pay our mortgage, afford maintenance/repairs, save for retirement, AND eat dinner. This required us to give up a lot. Half the house to be exact. Ever since moving in we have rented the basement. Becoming first time homeowners and landlords all at once has had a steep learning curve but we are fortunate that we have had amazing family and friends living with us thus far. Of course the house didn’t come ready made for renters so we will spill all the details of how we got our house up to speed.