I recently introduced you to my latest project. The biggest most challenging junkin’ project I have ever taken on. I shared with you the exterior and yard space of the 108 year old house in Minburn Alberta. When I posted about the old place that my cowboy owns, everyone was very excited to see what we were up to. There were many comments anticipating the tour of the inside of this house...so today I am going to share just that with you.
If you are following this series, you will remember that this is the property that My Cowboy, and his 7 older siblings (one sister and 6 brothers), his mom and dad, and whoever else needed a place to crash lived. Cowboy says that there were always a few extra kids staying with them...Their home was open to whoever needed a place to stay. (personally, I think his mother was a superhero...she already had 8 of her own kids, and she was open to caring for extras??? That to me is amazing)
My Cowboy bought the property after his mother decided that she no longer wanted to live here, and moved to a slightly larger community. The place stood empty for the better part of 10 years…empty except for the leftovers that no one really wanted to claim. Time alone without heat or any real maintenance took a little bit of a toll on the old house. The inside can only be described as a stale mess.
Today’s tour will include a look the interior rooms before we got too much started. I have a lot of photos to share today, and in an effort not to make this post painfully long, I will share just a few shots of each room. After today's total tour, you will only see a glimpse of each room as it is progressing with the clean up and transformation.
Grab yourself a coffee…it’s going to be a long one! I have to say...that the photos I am sharing seem to somehow make the inside of this house not look so bad. Trust me...in spite of the fairly nice look in the photos...it is a mess, and a stale smelling disaster area! Cob webs and dust are just the teensy tip of the iceberg!
Shall we begin???
To give you a better idea of what you are looking at, I am putting this picture of the exterior of the house up first. This may help you see where you are as we walk through the house.
First, look at the gray slanted addition on the side of the house. This is the addition that was added to give this large family extra space. It eventually became a porch, and a bedroom. For many years it has just been a space to drop off equipment or things that needed to be locked up and stored. It is an ugly eyesore!
Now…it is our work space…and in the spring it is going to be ripped off, an a patio put in it's place.
You can see that before I remembered to take some photos, we had already removed the old bath tub and toilet…they were robin’s egg blue…Yes…there were a lot of bright and “wonderful” colors used in this old lady. The orange on the back wall there is another cheery addition to the layers and layers of paint on most of the walls in this old house.
For right now, this porch is a great spot for us to cut wood, mix paint and store supplies while we work on the rest of the interior, that will be transformed into something completely different.
When you walk into the porch, you can go directly into the kitchen…
You can see the doorway into the porch and to the right, there is a gigantic hole cut into the wall. That big hole is there intentionally…We are going to put a large window into this spot. Once the porch is removed, a picture window will be a nice addition to the room.
The wood in this house is fir, and it is OLD…which means cutting it is a nightmare. I don’t know how many blades Cowboy went through to cut this wall…but it wasn’t pretty. lol
There is wall paper, which is falling off…and lots of it. Layers and layers of it! There is ick and old grunge everywhere…and then there are all the paint colors. We have a lot to do in this room.
It is just a darned good thing that what goes on ‘under my hair’, as my youngest calls it…(meaning my imagination) is active and very very big. I am gonna need it!
The first and by far the most important thing we needed to do, was to get a toilet installed in this house! I was sick to death of “roughing it”, and with fall coming there would be no tree cover to hide my bare bottom if I needed to pee! So…Cowboy got busy and was working on the bathroom as I took all the photos.
The living room was full of just about anything and everything you could imagine. There was a huge pile of very cheap laminate flooring, a nasty bathroom vanity, a filing cabinet, boxes and boxes of greeting cards that the family was given over the years, books, papers, you name it…I bet it was there. We sorted through it all and either burned or sent most of it to the dump. We tried to sell the laminate flooring and the vanity in a garage sale, but no one wanted it, not even for free... so we tossed it. Anything that was sentimental in value is now in storage.
By far the biggest improvement in this room will be the removal of this carpet…which has seen much better days…although it was ugly even when it was new…haha. You have got to wonder what inspired the style of 70's...well other than drugs...haha
We now are heading up to the second floor. I need to figure out what to do about the steps. Cowboy thinks we need to try to keep as much of the stairs and railing original if we can. It is going to be a challenge...they are very well worn.
At the top of the stairs, we have an adorable set of windows just screaming for me to put some pretty little curtains on them. However that will only come AFTER we get some of this other stuff dealt with. As you can see...the plaster walls in this area have seen MUCH better times.
A few years back one of Cowboy’s older brother’s decided to start to remove the plaster. That idea was short lived however, when big brother realized how much work that would entail…and now we need to decide how to deal with this mess!
There are holes in the plaster everywhere…and I do mean EVERYWHERE. This house is going to take a lot of drywall patching compound.
At the end of the hallway, we come to a door. This is the door out to that fabulous little balcony on the front of the house!
Something pretty needs to happen in this area too I think.
I don’t even think words can describe my thoughts on the mess in this room. We cleaned it up to take this photo. Be glad it’s blurry…Be VERY glad. This room is going to take a lot more work than other's...so it will not be on the top of the list...it will wait until after Christmas.
This…is one of two bedrooms that are getting immediate attention. This one, for some unknown reason is in good shape! The floor, and walls seem to be almost fine. Perhaps all it will take is a few simple coats of paint to smarten this room right up!
This bedroom is not as lucky as the other smaller one. Several layers of peeling wall paper, and crumbling plaster are making me wonder what I have managed to get myself into.
I need to come up with a plan…and I need that plan FAST. It was September when I took these photos…and my Cowboy wants to be able to stay overnight here in this house in November!
He is an avid hunter, and wants to be able to crash here after a long day in the bush. Since he does do most - if not all of his hunting in the Minburn area, it kind of makes sense… to go home from here IS an hour away, so having a place to stay if necessary is a comforting thought.
So…what I need is a little time to scheme…and plot and plan. Not too much time, as we are getting to a crunch here...Cowboy works away from home 2 weeks at a time, and that isn't going to make things go any faster!
I do know that my Cowboy wants this place to be a hunter’s hideaway….not a frilly Victorian palace. So…I have to come up with an idea…that will be comfortable, rustic and still have a little Tootsie style in it too! Is that even possible?????
I just don’t know how the heck I am going to incorporate MY style of decorating into this house There are a lot of challenges for me to incorporate some of the items that Cowboy is insisting on having in this place…did I mention that he has deer heads and other dead things that he is going to use in the décor? He is a guy...and has a few cheezy "guy" type things too. Ya…this is going to be a challenge of my Tootsie skills like you have never seen before!
Wish me luck…I think I am going to need it!
Stay tuned for the next episode of If Walls Could Tell A Story…the 108 Year Old House.
Until Next Time…Happy Junkin’/ Renovating/ Decorating!
*)*)*)… "Wisdom is knowing when to speak your mind and when to mind your speech."
(¸.•´ (¸.•´ .•´ ¸¸.•¨¯`•.
Did you miss a post in this series???
Article #1 If The Walls Of This Old House Could Tell A Story…The Saddest Chapter Is About To End.