decorating

Fifty-Two Weeks of Adventure #45: Welcome to Our Crib

After what feels like years of unpacking (but was really only a week) the new place is pretty much set up. Not surprisingly, unpacking all the boxes from the moving companies and decorating has taken up most of my free time this week and kept me from doing anything social whatsoever. My social skills are rapidly deteriorating.

I love the cozy charm of the new place, though it took a while for me to catch the vision for it since the layout is so different from our condo. The new place is a cute little house that’s been converted into a duplex. I’d love to show you a picture form the outside, but decided against it for safety reasons. But you can see the inside!

Here’s what it looks like when you walk in the front door. (Sorry these pictures aren’t the greatest, but I was too lazy to pull out the real camera).

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To your right as you walk in.

The living room is to your right as you walk in.

As you can see, we didn’t do any painting to the new place, partly because we were sick and tired of painting and partly because our new landlords don’t really want us to. I miss our fun accent walls and think a new coat of paint could do wonders for the bedroom, but having more windows in the living area means more light and more fun curtains which helps to keep things bright and colorful.

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The kitchen has plenty of floor space, but not a ton of cabinet space. There’s also no dishwasher (:() and no pantry so we converted our game/dvd storage shelves into a pantry.

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The spiral staircase is a cool feature, though not especially practical since you have to actually take the staircase apart and remove it in order to get furniture up into the loft. I still don’t know how we got this sectional up there.

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The cats think the stairs are a giant cat tree. They’re not wrong…

Fun fact: my parents’ house (the house I grew up in) also has a spiral staircase. In high school I had the upstairs bedroom and it felt like I lived in the tower room of a castle (In my imagination anyway). This has had the dual effect of endearing me to spiral staircases everywhere and at the same time being less impressed with them than most people are.

The upstairs loft area was a little tricky to figure out. It’s a large amount of floor space, but because of the oddly angled ceiling, not all of it is easy to use. We decided to make two separate areas with an office space and a reading/sitting area.

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The bedroom is the one room I’m still unhappy with and this is mainly because it needs to be painted and the curtain situation is abysmal. Most of the windows in the house came with those cheap plastic curtain rods already installed. Of course these don’t look as nice as real rods, but I could have gotten over that if only the rods were installed in the right place. Instead of installing the rods a little above the window frame and wider than the window itself, the rods are attached right to the frame resulting in windows that look tiny and cramped with ugly white poles showing through. It’s not so bad in the living room and even the dining area, but I really don’t like it in the bedroom. Eventually we may be able to fix this with new, properly placed rods and better curtains, but we don’t have the budget for it right now. I know this probably bothers me more than anyone else and it’s certainly not important in the grand scheme of things, but there you have it.

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Hope you enjoyed a little glimpse into our home and lives and stick around for more adventures to come! Also, I really am working on getting some more posts up this month that are more of my usual style. Moving twice, looking for work, writing freelance article,s and re-acclimating to America have taken a lot of my time and energy over the past few months, but there are so many things I want to share with you and I’m looking forward to getting back to writing here.

If you have an adventure to share, add your link to the link-up by clicking the button below. You can also click this button to read other bloggers’ adventures. You can participate in all of the adventures or you can just do a few. If you missed last week’s adventure about the big move  and our first time using a moving company, you can find it here. And if you are new to my Fifty-Two Weeks of Adventure project you can find out more about it here.

52 Weeks of Adventure #34: (Not-So) Extreme Home Makeover

Well, we did it. We packed up a moving truck, drove it to South Carolina, and put all of our things in a quiet little condo that we now call home. We arrived in Columbia with all of our stuff last Monday and worked like crazy (along with both sets of parents who were generous and kind and came to see us/haul boxes and paint things when we arrived) and one week later, we are officially moved in.

It was fun to unpack our things and re-discover everything we own. It was also fun (for me, at least) to have a chance to decorate and make the condo feel like our space. In Korea, we lived a temporary life. All of our furniture had either been provided by our schools or was purchased used from other foreigners with little regard for the aesthetic value. When we first moved to Korea, our living room wall was wallpapered with a print of cats sitting in windowsills. Needless to say, there wasn’t a lot of opportunity for creative self expression.

My first priority in the condo was to do some painting. I think paint is the easiest (and cheapest) way to spruce up a room or create a new look. In our last apartment in the US way back before Korea, we had some bright accent walls that made our generic apartment more fun. We wanted to try something new in the new space and ultimately chose a cool-toned theme throughout with lots of blues, grays, and greens. We’re both pretty pleased with the results.

Living Room - Before

Living Room – Before

Living room/kitchen pass through before

Living room/kitchen pass through before

Living Room After

Living Room After

Front entryway

Front entryway

We painted an accent wall in the living room a bright mid-toned blue and created a wall gallery for our scratch-off “Where have you been?” map and some travel photos.

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The furniture and rug were all things we already owned, but I did add in a few blue throw pillows to tie the color together.

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The office/room where guests will sleep on the floor is mainly about the bookshelves. I picked a dark gray for the walls, but kept up the blue and green theme with the rug and the curtains.

Office before.

Office before.

Office after!

Office after!

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In our last US apartment we only painted one accent wall in the master bedroom and it was a bright red. I decide that this time around I’d like to try a full room color, but since a lot of our bedding is green, I felt limited on color options. I eventually settled on a pale sage green.

Master bedroom before

Master bedroom before

Master bedroom after

Master bedroom after

The master bedroom is a really large space and after moving in our bed, end tables, and dresser, there was still a lot of empty space. We thought a chair would be nice to make a little reading nook, but we’d already picked up a few new things for other rooms and didn’t want the expensive of a new piece of furniture. I asked my friend Lorien for advice on a place to look for a cheap chair and she sent me a picture of this one saying she was selling it. Blanket over the top and a couple of throw pillows and it looks like it was made for that corner.

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We are really happy with our space and can’t wait to have some of our North and South Carolina friends over to visit. It was a TON of work to get all of this done in a week, but it feels so good to have everything settled and be able to breathe just a teensy bit. Now on to the next adventure – finding a way to pay the bills!

If you have an adventure to share, add your link to the link-up by clicking the button below. You can also click this button to read other bloggers’ adventures. You can participate in all of the adventures or you can just do a few. If you missed last week’s adventure about saying goodbye to one home and hello to another, you can find it here. And if you are new to my Fifty-Two Weeks of Adventure project you can find out more about it here.