We Bought a House: A Mini Home Tour & Our First Big Renovation Project!



If you’ve wondered why I launched a blog, made a big fuss about it, and then promptly disappeared, this post will explain a bit of that to you. In all honesty, it was a combination of things: Isla learning to walk & the weather warming up (adventures went up exponentially & the free time to do whatever I wanted to all but disappeared), shopping for a home, and, most prominently, struggling to find a way to share what felt organic & natural without oversharing my family. I know this blog doesn’t have a monstrous following, but I still wrestle with how much of my daughter to share. She’s part of the first generation whose entire life will be shared online by someone who is not them, but that train of thought is another blog post for another time.

Now, to what we all came here for! When we began home shopping, I immediately realized that sharing the process and eventually sharing our home renovation felt extremely natural and much more authentic than anything else I’ve shared on social media. Ever since I was young I loved interior design, and Austin & I would regularly dream about our future home and the way we would want to design it. I truly can’t wait to take you on our journey of renovating our home and everything we learn along the way! I hope our stories will inspire you, help you avoid mistakes we will inevitably make, and give you a little more insight into the mysterious & frustratingly vague world of homeownership.

And finally, to our new home! This was the fifth house we made an offer on, and it’s true what they say: when the right one comes along it’s going to work out. We ended up moving farther away from Boston than we were originally planning, but between the neighborhood, the home itself, the easy commute, and the pool (still can’t believe I get to say that), this home just felt right.

Our home was built in 1932 and is a quaint New England Colonial. True to the style, each room in our home is enclosed (as opposed to having an open floor plan) and I actually really love it. I feel like we’ll be able to play with different colors & patterns more than we would be able to if our home felt like one space. Our house is full of charm & the character of an older home, but with that also comes a very long laundry list of updates, some remarkably less fun (and more expensive) than others.

So, how did we decide what we wanted our first project to be? We budgeted to be able to do 2-3 larger projects right when we moved into the home, and while there’s a very long list to choose from, we chose the project that our home inspector suggested we do first (but we know you don’t want to hear about our sewer pipe) and one that we felt would help us feel more at home & happy as we cross off other less enjoyable projects off our list.

And now, drumroll, please… We are refinishing our floors!

We have beautiful white oak floors throughout our entire house (including the kitchen) and we knew refinishing them would immediately change the entire feeling of every space, and make the house smell unimaginably nicer (our house stinks, it’s just the honest truth). Doing the floors requires moving literally everything out of all our rooms, so we knew doing it right when we moved in & everything was still in boxes was going to be the path of least resistance. Our floors currently read very orange, and in our kitchen, the wood was painted a stark white, which makes the whole space feel extremely sterile & cold.

When gathering inspiration for the floor colors, I knew I wanted to choose a shade that felt true to the house & kept with its historic character. While I love the look of light floors, I knew it wouldn’t quite feel right for this particular home. We want the floors to fit the character of our home, and to feel like they’ve been here for a long time. So I looked to the queen of modern traditional, Jean Stoffer Design, and knew that these beautiful medium-brown floors would be a perfect fit for our home.

Design by Jean Stoffer Design

So we are currently living in a hotel room in Providence as we await our new floor! The flooring should take a total of 4 days, the first two spent sanding & prepping the floors, day 3 on the stain, and day 4 on the seal. Because we’re doing a water-based seal instead of an oil-based, they’ll be able to dry faster & we’ll be able to move back in the morning after they’ve applied the sealant. We are currently on day 3, so I went to the house this morning to pick our stain & they’ll be applying it today!

Living in a one-room hotel with a one-year-old, a working husband, and two cats obviously isn’t ideal, but it will be so worth it for these floors to have new life breathed back into them. And we’ll finally feel like we can settle in & make this home ours once this project is finished.

If you have any questions about the floor refinishing process (or anything else!), drop them in the comments section! We are learning so much as we go, and are happy to share the experience so you can feel equipped going into your own project!

For The Home


We Bought a House: A Mini Home Tour & Our First Big Renovation Project!

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Whether photographing a wedding or a small business, a maternity session or interior design, I believe every image should do two things:  tell an evocative story & stand the test of time.