1914 American Foursquare

Chronicals of our 1914 Four Square in Muncie Indiana

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Bath ro-do

Here are some photos of the bathroom re-do. Basically was a cosmetic change for now and we will be doing more extensive changes in the future - such as the flooring, ceiling and resurfasing the sink and tub.

Thursday, January 05, 2006

Cat, Dog and Flowers

Just couldnt have a photo blog without adding pictures of the dog, Samson, a chow/cocker spaniel mix and Abigail the cat, a Scottish Fold.

Samson is my dog. We've had him since he was born. His mother was also our dog but we had to have her put down 5 years ago at 13 yrs old. Sam turned 14 in November. Hes very sweet and is starting to slow down a bit.

Abigail is Matts cat. She was originally a show cat and actually won several medals and had a few litters of kittens. Matt adopted her when her handler felt she was too old to show any longer. Matt has had her about 7 years. She is 13 yrs old and is as far from a normal cat as you can get. Abigail has absolutely NO cat instincts, as she spent the first half of her life in a cage. She loves attention though.

The dog and cat do not get along, well, we dont really know that - theyve never met. They wont ever meet! Unfortunately Sam in his younger days hurt a cat and we are afraid he would hurt Abigail and she wouldnt try to defend herself. The animals were a big consideration on what house we bought when we were still looking. We had to have a way to seperate them. Here it really works out perfectly. Sam lives on the first floor with access to outdoors and the
basement, Abigail lives on the second and third floors. Since our stairway has three doors surrounding it, we just keep those shut and we installed a baby gate at the top of the stairs. Neither has ever tried to go through the barriers. We call the stairway the "dog lock" (kinda like an airlock kind of thing!).

The third photo is just a cool picture I took right after we moved in. It was spring and flowers were coming up all over the yard. I was so excited to see what the previous owners had planted! Just when the tulips were in bloom, we had a late snow. This photo is really cool when printed, as everything looks black and white but the flowers.

Up-to-date photos

Since I didnt have any up-to-date photos, I took some tonight. I only got the first floor, so I try and take some tomorrow of the second and third.

What a romantic New Years Eve!

Our first New Years Eve as a married couple and in our new house and we spent it doing a mini renovation on the breakfast nook!

I say mini because we eventually want to raise the ceiling, replace the paneling, floor and integrate the former porch/breakfast nook into the adjoining kitchen. But we spend so much time out there and we just hate the dark paneling and the fake styrafoam beams.

New Years Eve morning we were having coffee and Matt said "Ya know, Id really like to take down these beams and just paint the paneling sometime this winter." Well, being the government workers that we are, we didnt have to be back to work until Tuesday. So I said "Ya know, we have three days off right now"! That was it, by noon we were back from Lowes and tearing up the room.

As you can see above, we quickly found that those fake beams were holding up the drywall on the ceiling. Matt was so mad! Whoever did the ceiling had CUT the drywall too short and there were gaps and one side of each sheet wasnt even nailed to the support beams! In an effort to come up with a solution until the big remodel, we ended up painting two boards the same as the ceiling and had to put those up in the fake beams place. Its not what we wanted, and really the wall color wont be final, but we had paint leftover from fixing up our other two houses for sale.

So, it got done - 10pm on Monday night! But its done and looks better than it did before. I stenciled the saying "By hammer and hand do all things stand" above the window and still want to stencil a little more in there above the other windows. We saw the saying in a bungalow book that Matt got me for Christmas. We looked up the saying and its a motto for Blacksmiths. Ill post the link here if I can find the story again.

Ah! Here it is:

Listing at Houseblogs.net

Registered the blog today at http://www.houseblogs.net If you like to read and look at pictures of old house renovation, this site is awesome.

Two other old house sites I frequent are the forums at http://www.oldhouseweb.com and the forums of my all time favorite magazine http://www.americanbungalow.com

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Starting to come together

Above are the livingroom and diningroom, mostly before we moved in. The top photo shows the buffet that belonged to my great, great-grandmother that I purchased last summer at a family members auction. It was in horrible shape and I stripped it and Matt refinished it.

Summer photos

We removed the large evergreens from the front of the house, the brick has a neat pattern across the front. Several people commented on the brick as we were removing it

Second Floor carpet gone!

Upstairs landing looking into guest bedroom

Master bedroom

Guest bedroom again


Notice the floors, once we removed the red, royal blue and purple shag, this was the condition. We didnt have to do anything to them.

Carpet is GONE!



Entry (Matt)

The first floor hardwood is yellow birch we are told. Unfortunately there were two areas that needed patched. After searching we found a mill right here in Muncie that was willing to duplicate the wood. Other than that we sanded and refinished the first floor.


Closeup of the sink. Notice the three faucets. The top faucet was originally tied into the cistern that is still buried under our driveway. Hopefully they filled it in! The fact that our house was built for water conservation was a HUGE selling point for me!

Awesome claw foot tub. We since have added a shower ring. The first night we stayed in the house I couldnt wait to fill that tub and soak!

Purchase and possession

This house being the second that we made an offer on, I was crushed to find out someone else had also made an offer. Two heart stopping days later we found out that we had gotten the house. WHEW!

Later, we found out that we were bidding against a former owners family. Boy did that make me feel guilty - but then again, WE GOT THE HOUSE!

Purchased the house in February and took possession April 1, 2005. The previous owner had lived in the house for 47 years. I cannot imagine how she got moved so quickly!

Matt was skiing in Colorado when we took possession. I picked up the keys and went over and tore out the first floor carpeting that first night!

We had taken the previous photos when we were looking at the house. We took a few of the remodel (cosmetic only) that we did in the two weeks before we actually moved. Unfortunately we were so busy we didnt take more. We were on a deadline of May 30th for my sons highschool graduation party...at the house, with our wedding (200 ppl, NOT at the house) the following weekend on June 5. So it was definately CRUNCH TIME!

We will be better about taking photos, especially now that we have a digital camera!

Pre-purchase 1st Floor

Livingroom (Admire the carpet now! ;) )

Eating area off the kitchen (Added 60s - 70s?)

Kitchen through to diningroom (The previous owner)

Full kitchen cabinet shot

In dining room, the front entry


Behind the Garage.

From the garage to the back of the house. (Matts Durango)
The shed in the background was originally a summer kitchen for a house that stood on the property prior to our house. The building was later used as a garage for a model A.
The Garage. Not much else to say ;)

Our house