We’re Buying a House!

Mandi Makes a New Home

You guys! Something absolutely crazy is happening in my life. On Saturday, April 1st (yes, April Fool’s Day), I asked Phil if he wanted to go to an open house for an amazing 1970s house I found on Zillow that had a CONVERSATION PIT in the living room! He said, “Sure!” We talked about how fun it would be to move, how ready we were, and how we should probably start getting our house ready to sell. Not that this ’70s house would be “the one.” But you know, this was a fun idea, and it made us realize we should probably gear up to sell our house and move on to the next adventure.

Fast forward to the next day, we attended the open house and fell in love. Should’ve seen it comin’. We wanted to put an offer in, and we were even pre-approved for a mortgage to do so. But we decided this was financially stupid, seeing as how we weren’t even close to being ready to put our house on the market. Two mortgages? Yeah, no.

So, I got on Instagram, shared the day through live videos, and then ended the day telling you all that we were going to put our house on the market in two weeks. Maybe we could get it on the market in time to put an offer in on that amazing ’70s house! Crazy, right?! But something even crazier happened the next day.

A friend of mine texted me to tell me he knew someone interested in our house. I let her see it that evening, and she was very interested. And Phil and I were very excited. That week, I barely slept. I worked on our house night and day, preparing it to sell. I wanted to move, and I wanted to move badly. Well, six days later we entered into contract with the absolute perfect buyer for our home, and had been crushed to find out our dream home was already in contract as well. Wow, what a whirlwind! I had been emotionally to the moon and back (and then back to the moon?) and while I was sad to have missed out on what I knew would’ve been an amazing house, I was excited about taking our time to find a new house, as we saved money while living with our parents while we waited. How many months would it take? We didn’t know. The thought of waiting and not knowing if or when to settle made me very stir crazy. Would we ever find what we wanted and in our budget?!

Mandi Makes a New Home

But then I found the above images on Zillow for a house I had scrolled past countless times— its lead image showed a boring looking home which lacked curb appeal— nothing about its exterior photos that would lead me to think this could be “the one.” I remember (because it wasn’t that long ago— ha!) clicking through the photos thinking, “Hmmm… I could work with that!” And Phil said, “You could work with that, but do you really love it? Is it really ‘the one’?” I said, “No, probably not.” But I made an appointment to see it the next day anyway. And wow— it was so perfect for us!

We had made a list of qualifications for our dream home, but figured we’d not be able to find a place that met all the criteria. At least, not in our price point. Still, we needed to start somewhere. So here’s what we put on our list:

An entryway separate from the rest of the house, a large kitchen open to a dining area big enough for my heirloom farmhouse table, a private office for Phil big enough for a sofa and chairs for his mentoring and Bible studies, an office for me that was big enough to work on all of my crafts and projects, a large great room with high ceilings, a basement with potential for finishing down the road, a room the kids could call their own (to house most of their toys), three bedrooms, two baths, a two car garage, a decent yard, not on a busy road, in a nice neighborhood, and a house that was asking for cosmetic upgrades, but didn’t need big renovation done. WHEW! What a list, right? And did I mention, our budget was around 175k? Ha!

Well, what would you know, we sold our house and found that exact house (that met all of our criteria and then some— partially finished basement, 3 and a half baths, and a three car garage) and got it for the exact price we were hoping for! We are basically in shock. So much is changing so quickly, and my far off house dreams are coming true in such a short amount of time. I keep thinking I’m going to wake up and find out this was all a really fun dream. (Please don’t pinch me.)

Mandi Makes a New Home

If all goes according to plan (we trust God that it will), we’ll be  closing on our new house at the beginning of June and will be starting renovations on the first floor immediately. We are ripping out all of the flooring material, removing much of the cabinetry in the kitchen, rearranging the cabinetry to move the oven to a different wall, and oh, so much more! Check out my video tour of the house on my Facebook page here, and see my inspiration images for the house below. So excited to share this entire crazy journey with you guys!

click images to see where I found each one

white living room earthy accents

Floating shelving around floor to ceiling fireplace

Open Pantry System

california modern

velvet banquette

gray lower cabinets, white and gray subway tile

neutral kitchen with floating shelves

1970s Magazine Inspiration

1970s boho modern kitchen

The 1970s is experience a revival in the design world these days, and as someone who likes a little sophisticated kitsch (that’s a thing, right?), I couldn’t be happier! I recently picked up some old House & Garden magazines from around 1969-1972, and found myself pouring over the interiors featured inside. Sure, a lot of the ’70s needs to stay buried, deep, deep down never to be seen again. But some of it is just gold. Harvest gold, sure, but if you look past the nightmarish wall-to-wall carpeting and remember the magic of sunken living rooms and malm fireplaces, there’s treasure to be found.

I hope you enjoy a little decor inspiration for your Friday! I can’t stop thinking of oversized hex tiles, earthy color schemes, and funky textiles. I’m all about the mix— a bit boho, a little mid century, a touch traditional, and a dash of glam. That grasscloth clad room below right? With the tailored white furnishings, oriental rug juxtaposed with the lucite coffee table and malm fireplace? Heaven. Which one’s your favorite room?

1970s home decor

1970s home decor

1970s sunken living room

1970s open shelving kitchen

1970s pink carpet bedroom

MOST WANTED: Vintage Planters

sideboard vignette with plants and candle holder

It seems like everyone’s bringing a little more green in to their homes these days, and I’m not just talking about paint! Even brown thumbs are giving houseplants a go, and with good reason! They add such warmth and liveliness to a space, and for those who like a good challenge, the right plant will fill that void in your life. Ha! As if we need another living creature to take care of, eh? Well, now that I’ve mastered the art of nurturing the houseplants I’ve had for years, I’ve been all about adding a few newbies into the mix, which in turn launched a hunt for a few new (old) pots. I really love the way vintage planters put the icing on top of my houseplant cake, adding a whole new element of texture and character to the decor of a room.

Now that I’ve claimed dibs on my favorites (they’re en route to my house as I type! Yippee!), I figured I ought to share the fruits of my vintage planter hunt with all of you, in case you’re in the market for a new houseplant or two. I mean, whose home couldn’t stand a new little green guy, amiright? Check these out, though! Very nice planters simply oozing all the cool mid century vibes.

(above planters on my dining room cabinet from left to right: West Elm; thrifted ; Lowes)

vintage plantersvintage planters

vintage planters Spiral Stoneware Planter (5″ x 6″) // $20.00
vintage planters White Splatter Pedestal Pot (6.5″ x 8″) // $26.00
vintage planters Turquoise Drip Glaze Dish (12″ x 4.5″) // $30.00
vintage planters Brown Spatter Pedestal Dish (5.75″ x 4″) // $10.00
vintage planters White Scalloped Bowl (6″ x 3″) // $19.95
vintage planters Two-Tone Brown Portuguese Planter (3.5″ x 4″) // $14.84
vintage planters Orange and Lavender Speckled Planter (5″ x 3.75″) // $18.00
vintage planters Brown Glazed Planter (5″ tall) // $14.00
vintage planters Copper Hanging Planter (2.5″ tall pot) // $48.00
vintage planters Green Splatter Dish (9.75″ x 3.5″) // $20.00
vintage planters Blue and Teal Footed Planter (5.5″ x 4.5″) // $60.00
vintage planters Black Stoneware Globe Vase (4.5″ x 3.5″) // (etsy shop on break)
vintage planters Goldenrod Yellow Pedestal Planter (5″ x 5″) // $10.98
vintage planters Large White Pumpkin-esque Planter (10.5″ x 5.75″) // $78.50

And for good measure, I thought I’d share some new plants I have in my home! Hanging pothos plants are my fail-safe houseplant that I can use in dimmer lit rooms. I’d been wanting to hang something in our bathroom for quite a while, and finally got these cool diagonally glazed planters from CB2. I think the pothos will grow pretty long and look beautiful in here!

CB2 hanging planters

I found this ficus tree (below) on Craigslist and took Lucy on a two-hour road trip (four hours there and back) to go get it. We’re crazy like that! (Super fun experience, by the way! We talked all the way there and back!) I was really nervous about having this ficus in our home, because I heard they are notorious for dropping leaves in shock when moved to a new location. I love the tree and while I would’ve been disappointed to lose the money (just $30) and waste the effort I put into the tree, I mostly just really felt like this tree is exactly what our living room has needed. So, I have lost some leaves, but I’ve also have a lot of regrowth and feel pretty good about this guy! It’s a great sculptural element to jazz up the simple white brick fireplace wall in our living room.

ficus alii

And last, but not least, I decided to challenge myself to grow a couple of cacti in our home (one pictured below). I’ve been convinced that they’re very easy to maintain, and I’ve been reading lots about them, but they’re so different from anything I’ve grown, I definitely feel challenged and a wee bit worried.

houseplant collection(above planters in order of left to right: West Elm, Vintage, Home Goods, Amazon, Ikea)

Side note: Am I the only one who stays awake at night worrying about my plants and reading up about them? I feel a a bit like a crazy person. Crazy plant lady. It’s the new cool thing to be. I’ll accept the title gladly.

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