Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Our House - My Family's Biggest UFO (UnFinished Object)

My husband and I have been working on an unfinished project now for awhile and I would like to share it with you.  I have been looking at all the pictures again and think it would be fun to see where we started and where we are now.  Some time ago we left our life in the city and bought an abandoned prairie church sitting on two acres.  We knew if we kept living in the city and driving out to work on it on weekends we would never complete it or move in so we moved out to the country with no power, water or heat and set to work.  Here is a what the outside looked like when we moved in.
We are still not done - I said it was a UFO, right?  But here is a photo of where we are now on the outside.  This summer will hopefully see us finishing up the outside by putting up vinyl siding, eavestrough, finishing the front porch DH started last summer and then it is on to landscaping at last!


He built a balcony on the other side of the house so I can sit out there and look at the mountains and a big deck (20 X 24) at the back of the house and now he is working on the front porch.  As you can see from the pictures, he took the steeple down, repaired and replaced the shingles on the roof and added three dormers with windows.  He replaced all the stained glass windows (except two on the other side of the house) with energy efficient ones, took out the door at the front and put a new one on the side which is now the front.  He has done even more inside though!

Get ready for a shock!  These next two photos are taken standing in the center of the old church, one taken in each direction.  This is what we moved into because I could see the potential and dh - the ultimate DIY-er in my humble opinion - bought into my dream.  Gotta love him!
I know the photos are awful quality but you get the idea, right?  So, this great guy I married (did I mention how much I love him?!) built me the house of my dreams inside this building.  From approximately 2600 square feet of living space he made a huge bathroom and kitchen, a laundry room big enough for two deepfreezes as well, four bedrooms, a library, and a huge open concept living area with living room area complete with toasty woodstove, dining area, home office, music area, and kitchen.  He even turned the original vestibule into a lovely walkin pantry with a french door.  So, take another look at those two pictures above and now look below to see some of what he did with it...

The first room we finished was the washroom.  At the time we moved in there was not any water at all!  There was an outhouse at the back of the yard!  One of the first things we had done was drilling a well and putting in a septic system.  The wainscotting in the bathroom is made from some of the original wall boards that we recycled and painted white. 
Another big project was the kitchen.  We ended up buying the cabinet doors but because the cost of readymade cabinets is just atrocious, dh built the cabinets and hung them himself, including the large island with the sink.  The cost of the island readymade was more than the whole kitchen cost doing it himself.  Just to the left of the frig you can see a glimpse of my pantry door. 
These are a few shots of the living room area.  A lot of pictures to look at I know but I really am proud of the job dh did of it all so bare with me!  lol  You can see the woodstove we put in - just a cheapie to supplement the new furnace but it sure makes it cozy.  There is nothing nicer than the heat from a woodstove!  The floors are the original church floors, refinished.  Considering they are over a hundred years old now they are holding up well.  You can see the new windows dh put in and the ceilings in the living room are 16 feet.  He added a second floor but on either side of the living room with a separate set of stairs to each so we could enjoy the high ceilings in this one area.

This is the dining area - between the living room area and the kitchen.  I have just noticed there seems to be a cat or part of one in every picture!  lol - I guess that is to be expected when you have seven of them.

This is one set of stairs.  This leads up to the two kid`s bedrooms.  I decided to stencil the stairs one day and luckily my husband liked it! Here you can see one of the original stained glass windows.  We left one in each stairwell.  When you are coming towards the house from that side at night and the lights from inside are shining out through these windows they just seem to shout Welcome!
This is a view of my little library from the top of the other set of stairs - can you tell I have a thing for french doors?  Outside the french doors is a balcony dh built for me so we can sit out there and see the mountains in the distance.  It isn`t much of a mountain view but on a clear day they are pretty no matter how far off they are.

This is a view of the library from the other set of stairs.  You can see down into the living room from that railing.  I usually have a couple of quilts over the railing but you get a better view of the room this way I guess.  Coming off the library here are my sewing room and the master bedroom but I did not take pictures of them.

Just another view of the living room.  This is taken from the top of the stencilled stairs, from the same spot as I took the one across to the library.  Anyway, I guess that this is it - all the photos I have taken.  It amazes me what a great job dh did on all this - quite a lot of work for evenings and weekends!  I am not sure if we will ever really be completely done but we get a bit closer all the time.  I guess I am done bragging on him for now - thanks for looking!  It was nice to have you visit my house!

17 comments:

Karen said...

Wow Kerry! What a blessing to have such a talented husband. The two of you make a perfect pair. Come on share a picture of the sewing room. I bet it is super!! Love all that you have done. How exciting and tiring!!

kerrykatiecakeskeb43 said...

Thanks Karen! I will share the sewing room after I get home from my work from the summer - promise!
Hugs,
Kerry

Annie said...

To quote Jerry Lee Lewis....You..leave...me...breathless!

Cathy K said...

Dear Kerry - this is AMAZING!! I never knew this!! Here we spent several nights as roomies last September, and you never talked about this unbelievable, incredibly beautiful makeover! This should be a magazine feature. No kidding. It is beyond worthy. Your DH is, well, you said it - the ultimate DIY'er. OMG. What a lovely, lovely home you have. You should both be so proud. Good grief, I'm babbling..... but I'm just floored! Love ya, Cathy (ps - did I mention what a lovely home you have??)

Gerry Krueger said...

That is just amazing... He is a keeper and deserves a bigger tool budget... Too bad about customs or I could supply all your landscaping needs but will gladly advise on hardy, tough things to plant... Hugs Gerry

Gerry Krueger said...

ps what did you do with all the stained glass...? Hope you saved it... was there a bell in the steeple?? Gerry..

Jeanne said...

Kerry:

I AM WAY WAY WAY JEALOUS, it is beautiful. My Hubby and I have dreams of buying a little farmette and putting up a log house (cabin) from wood on the land, but IT IS A DREAM~~~~YOURS IS A REALITY!!!! CONGRATS and it is a wonderful treasure. Thanks for sharing.

Thelma said...

Absolutely beautiful Kerry! Wow! Such a beautiful home, whom would have known it used to be a church. DH done an awesome job!!

Cathy said...

WOW!
Cathy

Hideko Ishida 石田英子 said...

Your life style reminds me the story of Laura Ingalls Wilder's family. That's amazing you and your husband are so courageous to choose that in this century. I respect you both.

Debbie said...

Oh Kerry, what a beautiful home you have! Beautiful home for a beautiful person! Debbie (Maine)

shawkl said...

Yep, that husband of yours is a "keeper" for sure! What a great house! And what a great vision you had...I'm not sure I would have seen it, but glad you did! Great photos of what I'm sure is a true labor of love!

Love the stencils on the stairs!

Kathy
www.shawkl.com
www.shawkldesigns.com

Selina said...

Wow! This is such a beautiful home! Brag away about your husbands work, he has done an amazing job!

Cynthia said...

Kerry, the house is amazing. You and your husband have done an incredible job. How are you going to continue to work on it this summer when you are at camp? Do you come home a couple of days a week?

I can't wait to see more. It's inspiring.

Sew Useful Designs said...

Oh wow Kerry - you're certainly not biased about your husband - he (and you) have done an AMAZING job!!! Your home is simply stunning! Thank you for allowing us to visit!
Vikki xx

Anonymous said...

I am totally blown away! It is such a fabulous home and how wonderful that you and your husband were able to put so much love, talent and hard work into the renovation. As Nate Berkus says, you should be "house proud!"
June (Vintageinspired)

Jane said...

What an incredible transformation! You & you hubby deserve kudos!