Well, the time has come! It’s time to show off the new pad in California! We are so excited to show you what it looks like all empty and ready for our mountains (literally) of furniture and belongings! We feel so fortunate to have found a rental that not only has oodles of potential but also has everything we need and nothing that we don’t. It’s a 3 bed, 1,800 square foot condo with a 2-car garage (oh, God bless you, garage!!). The whole layout is spread over three floors with the garage and a bedroom on the first, bedroom/kitchen/living on the second and the master on the third. There’s no yard, but Maggie is adjusting very well to having 4-5 walks/day and we could definitely use the extra exercise, so we’re not complaining!
Dr. J took a few pics with his phone so all apologies to the quality of the images and lack of views in certain areas. Everything is much more clearly understood in the YouTube video which you can access by clicking here. Enough chit-chat, let’s get this tour started!!:
There’s one bedroom on the first floor and it’s going to be the “flex space” or “Room of Requirement”, used mostly as a man room, den and guest room when needed. It also has a full bathroom attached to the room with a pretty sizable shower, which is perfect for guests when the room is not filled to the brim with boxes – haha! You can get a better idea of the bathroom layout in the video tour. We’re lovin’ the beautiful plantation shutters which are all throughout the house. We may paint this room down the line, but the color will work with some of our furnishings so it’s not tops on our list to change right away.
So here are two views, one from the door looking towards the front of the house:
..and a view from the window wall looking toward the bathroom door (you can just barely make out the door handle from the hallway on the left of the photo)….
We didn’t get a lot of pictures of the downstairs hallway before it was overrun by boxes and belongings, so we covered the rest of it on the video tour.
You go up the stairs to the second floor (again, the layout is much clearer in the video) and you immediately are in the family room, below. The colors are sort of a warm honey beige color which we may or may not paint. It’s a big room that has a great layout and those plantation shutters give it so much architecture and personality. There’s a small patio off of this room where we’ll set up our grill and cafe chairs for morning coffee and meals alfresco. Gotta love California!
In the photo below, you can see the stairwell to go upstairs on the left and the opening on the right of the photo is the top of the stairs from the first floor and the hallway leads down to a powder room (just visible) and the office. The alcove in the center is perfect for a TV (and potential Media Cabinet building project later on – WHOO!) and the floors are an engineered hand-scraped floor that *might* be Hickory or maybe Heart Pine? Either way, they are absolutely GORGEOUS:
In this photo, you can see the hallway down towards the powder room and office on the left and the opening for the kitchen in the center, which is very, very red!
The kitchen is just off of the family room and is a decent size for one or two cooks. We have just enough storage for what we need but clearing out some clutter on our parts will make this kitchen work for us in the long run. Fortunately, the wine bar and pot rack practically doubles the storage and the counter top space, so that’s definitely a bonus and we’re so glad the landlord left it! The floors are a beautiful rustic porcelain in sort of a taupe-y-gray tone which we are lovin’! There’s lots of potential in this space and this may be our first makeover once we get unpacked!
We have significantly less dining space than the previous house since there’s no real breakfast bar, but our little dining table fits perfectly in here. Oh, and those “stained glass” vinyl decals on the windows are already gone. Haha! Again, lots of plans for in here. We can’t wait to get started!
This room is just off of the living room in the little hallway adjoining the living room to the office. It’s a full bath with a tub/shower so it’s really much more than just a powder room. This room is also going to get a fresh coat of paint to lighten/brighten the space since there are no windows and it’s a pretty small space. That same beautiful porcelain taupe-y tile that is in the kitchen is also in here so it gives us lots of potential!
Just down the hallway from the living room/powder room is what we’ll be using as our office. Since I work from home nearly every day and Dr. J works from home occasionally during the week, it’s vital for us to have a dedicated office space with two work stations so we’re already elbow deep in the building phase of setting it up. The owners left those cute tic-tac-toe bookshelves which will come in handy. It’s a pretty tight space so we’re going to have to get creative when it comes to storage and the walls were never painted in here so if we have the energy, this is a space I’d love to amp up a bit…
Upstairs Master Bedroom/Bath
The Master Bedroom and Bath are way up on the third floor and just over the office/kitchen area. It’s so nice to have it be far away from the hustle and bustle of the city streets below and on the quieter side of the house. It’s a big space too so our furniture has fit in pretty nicely! We are going to need curtains for that window and possibly paint the walls, but it’s a great space that’s working out very well for us so far.
From this vantage (which is taken in the opposite corner to the photo above), you can probably pick out my biggest pet peeve of this space, which is that the bathroom has no door except for the water closet. This is kind of a pain since we both wake up at different times in the morning so when Dr. J is showering and singing at the top of his lungs (haha!), then I am desperately burying myself in the pillows to go back to sleep. We may have to address that issue, especially when the dark days of winter are fully upon us, but for right now we’re just living with it until we decide otherwise:
Overall, the master bath is a great size and the shower is deceptively large, which we are loving! We have a frosted window in the shower that gives us plenty of California sunshine and ventilation, two sinks and lots of storage. We have a few plans up our sleeves to make this space slightly more functional for us, but overall, it’s really perfect for our needs.
So that’s the house! We also have a video tour, here! Dr. J took this with his phone before we officially moved in and before I physically saw it so his dialogue was really directly addressed to me and the quality isn’t awesome, but it should give you a rough idea of the layout.
Believe it or not, I never saw this place until the night before the moving truck showed up (!!). With Dr. J and I both working full time and needing to wrap up our house in Portland before moving down, there just wasn’t enough time for me to run down to California and take a look at it. Also, we’ve found out that real estate in California is hot, hot, HOT! So if you don’t jump as soon as possible, then you’re probably going to miss out. We learned that lesson from previous experience so Dr. J jumped on this place as soon as he heard about it. Also, I actually kind of trust my hubby, so that helps too.
So I’ll bet you’re wondering what changes we’re going to tackle first? Well, we do have a few small plans that we’d like to tackle – most of them involve just getting unpacked enough so that we can move around our space without tripping over boxes and debris – haha! And since I just saw this place for the first time a few weeks ago, I’m still in the “live with it first before tackling any projects” phase, though I do have a few changes in mind, as always. Honestly, I’m most looking forward to just painting a room or two. We haven’t painted anything seriously since we painted the master bath in our first house a whopping year and a half ago (!!). So to say that I’m itchin’ to get behind a paint brush again would be the understatement of the century. We are also still trying to figure out the whole “function” thing in terms of making things work for us, which is part of the fun of moving into a new house!
So there ya have it! Lots to do to get the house even remotely put together enough to actually show a home tour with it furnished. Every day it’s a little bit better, though. Hopefully we can get things roughly in shape by about the 1-month standpoint so stay tuned for that!