Friday, May 11, 2012

Should We Stay Or Should We Go? That is the question!

When I was young, I thought I knew it all! I thought I knew what I wanted in life, in my shop, and even in my house! However, now that we are about to sort of be "empty nesters" my tastes have definitely changed and I've also realized that I should have prioritized what was important! In ALL of those areas! 
But for this post, we will focus on the house! 
Otherwise we could be here for hours!
Years ago my precious mother in law engaged the help of her long time designer friend Mrs. Emily Neel.
That was a huge benefit to me because even in her elderly years….Mrs. Neel was the finest, most talented designer I had ever heard of! She was also quite practical and she set about helping me make a "plan" for our tiny little first home. I will never forget her words of advice or her love of a good ice cream cone after a long day of picking out fabrics or searching for the perfect pair of bedside tables! Whatever we did it always ended with an ice cream cone from Baskin-Robbins in Mountain Brook Village! 
(if only I'd known then that I would have a shop just around the corner from that!)
Mrs. Neel's most memorable piece of advice to me was to never settle! She would always say, "Don't waste your money buying something that will just "make do"! You will never be happy with it and in the long run you will end up spending more because you didn't get what you really wanted in the first place!" Even if that meant having to do without for awhile!
Oh, how true those words were!
And they still stand true today! 
If I could give one piece of advice to my children, my young customers or anybody for that matter it would be the same thing! Which is why now we are facing the delima of looking at moving or adding/re-doing our existing home because it doesn't have the key elements in a house that I truly want! At the time we were re-doing this house we couldn't afford elaborate moldings or wainscoting or fabulous floors, or incredible bathrooms, etc…And now that Miller is leaving for Auburn in the fall we find ourselves re-thinking our situation and looking at other homes to re-do or property to build on. 
We both keep coming back to the same conclusion…We love where we are…the memories are priceless and it might be a lot less hassle to up grade so to speak than to move! Thanks to Pinterest ….and long nights of searching it's made it pretty easy to know what we want to do! Add Quality elements to our home! Oh, it has the qualities that are lasting…the memories made, etc… but now we are seeking out the things that make it stand out and make it house with character and good "bones"!
Hope you enjoy these pictures as much as I did! Isn't Pinterest fun?!

I've always loved detailed moldings….just look at these fabulous pictures from Pinterest!

Look at the difference in this "before" and "after" picture!

Wainscoting, pretty moldings and even beautiful paneling certainly add that extra touch of character to any house!

And who doesn't love beautiful hardwood floors? 
We did do that right away but I wish we had done them upstairs as well!

The thought of having to re-do tile in the bathrooms or anywhere for that matter is a bit overwhelming! But there are so many pretty choices out there!

Of course, one of the most difficult things I can think of is re-working ceilings, adding beams and even adding fabulous windows! I'm sure my son would be happy to get to work on it though! I think those are the things he likes best in any of his renovations!

Well, I could go on and on with all of the fabulous images I see every day! However, for now I'm content to dream and really make the right decision of whether to move or stay! Either way, I'm not going to do anything until I can do it right! ( which of course makes Jim happy!) That way I think we will just be here enjoying what we already have for the time being!

Have a great weekend and hopefully everyone will have a wonderful Mother's Day as well!


  1. I agre to upgrade, not uproot! You are in the perfect location, but if you do move, hopefully you will stay in the same area.
    Beautiful images. Don't you just love Pinterest?
    Happy Mother's Day.

  2. My thoughts exactly! I'm in the same situation. Empty nester...stay and remodel or go....something's gotta happen though! Lovely images. Happy Mother's Day to you!

  3. Hi Carolyn - I always advise my clients if they love their home and need just a little more room, than add an addition (if possible), etc. If they no longer love their home for many reasons or the neighborhood, might be time to move. Also, if the home is too big after the kids move out, might also be time to downsize. I'm sure you all will make the right decision ;-) Love your selection of photos. Cheers from DC, Loi

  4. Thanks, Loi! Great advice! We REALLY love our neighborhood and our lot…I think it's just a matter of being willing to go through a big re-model simply due to lifestyle changes. I know it will all work out but if you have anymore advice I'm always willing to listen! I love your work!

  5. Those photos are truly gorgeous. I especially fell for the first one! And I totally agree with you on the philosophy to never settle!