Befores and Afters

June 2005

I remember the first time I looked at this house. We had been looking for houses for a while and were overwhelmed at the prices of them. The house had been empty for months. It had been for sale a while, and an acquaintance of the people who owned the house told me about it. It was tucked back from a road in a development - and very shady. See the little spot of sun toward the upper right part of the picture above? That was pretty much the sun you got in the backyard for the day. Below is after - we've since moved the gardening shed to the side of the yard.

June 2005, after tree cutting

April 2009 - leaves not out yet
winter plowing scars to be seeded over

June 2005, before tree cutting

There were trees within about 7 feet of the deck, and very little sunshine got into
the windows of the house. Some people like a shady place, but I like to let some sun in.

June 2005, before bush was cut down...

In the picture below you can see how close the trees were to the house in the backyard. So we bought the house and set out to let more light in. See the bush above that was hiding the door to the mudroom. It's gone now. In the picture you can see the "after" picture with the trees taken out in the backyard.

April 2009

We lost some of the lush feel of the shady yard, but gained sunlight and access, and I'm happy with that. It's interesting when I think of all the things we've done to this house and list them out by the year we've been here (1-5)
  1. Take out trees, redo back yard, redo driveway. These were all part of the plan when we purchased. I have family in earthwork so this is easier for me to envision and see as doable.
  2. Rest and enjoy backyard
  3. Redo roof, and replace rotted part in garage. Find out rot goes all the way through the length of the deck, and that we have to replace the french doors. Not a sexy redo, in that it's not a noticeable thing. But it was costly.
  4. Relax and enjoy new roof. Repaint the deck out back, though.
  5. Reside house with vinyl.
  6. Relax and enjoy maintenance free exterior...and work on landscaping.
Doing this post was fun for me. I got to relive all the things we actually have done to improve this house. I see that most have been improvements, but with changes have come some losses as well. My dad has a saying he quotes "Change is certain, progress is not." Oh, well, rambling all done. If you've read to the end you're a family member or friend. :-)

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"Do not let what you cannot do
keep you from doing what you can do."

John Wooden