#Melroseplacehouse Update No.1

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It’s been a LONG time since I did an update, and I could’ve posted some more over here in the prior months, most of it was just gutting the house, putting in new subfloors, and revising my design plan like 100 times. We ditched our original plan to add a bedroom and move the kitchen because it turned out to be out of our budget, so we’re doing a plain ol’ “lipstick flip” (as they say in the biz). So basically, keeping the original floor plan and just updating all the surfaces to be new and prettier. The original floorplan was not bad (minus the odd pony wall that separated the dining room and living room and broke up the whole flow of the space), so I’m not disappointed about the floorplan. The whole idea with adding a bedroom was just to add value to the home (3 bedrooms can fetch a higher sale price than 2), but you can’t add any value if you go over budget, so we scrapped my grand plans and went back to basics.

The other change in plans: we are now living in the house! I’ve mentioned it before in my post about #thebravehouse becoming an Airbnb, but we decided since we have two houses, it makes the most financial sense for one of them to be generating cashflow or at least paying for it’s mortgage and utilities. So even though we’re living in an unfinished house and all my socks have sawdust stuck to the bottoms, I’m very happy to a.) be spending SO much more time with Dan (he used to go straight from work to the house to work on it, then come home, go to bed and repeat. Needless to say, this girl whose love language is quality time was feeling a bit starved for our marriage to have time together), b.) be able to put in work on the house myself while Jack is either playing outside or in his room and during his naps, and c.) be generating an income with the other home I spent years crafting and curating!

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So as a little reminder: here is the original kitchen. This photo was taken the day we got the keys. The lower cabinets are the same, we just painted them black (Behr Broadway, the same color we have on the exterior, just in an eggshell sheen. Exterior is a semi gloss). We decided to get new uppers because I wanted them to be taller. The old cabinets felt too short and I wanted something that drew your eye upward and made the room feel taller. I have a couple more to put up, one over the fridge and one on the right side by that window, and then we’ll do a hood over the range and open shelving on either side of that, butting into the cabinets, like so:

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We’re gonna pop an island in there because this kitchen is HUGE. The floor is going to be a concrete-look 12x24 tiles, and then I’m thinking of doing a black tile backsplash, which would definitely be a bold move, considering the cabinets are also black, but I definitely don’t want to do a basic white tile. After all the basic stuff is taken care of we can move on to more fun stuff like putting in pendant lighting over the bar/peninsula and replacing the gross fluorescent light in the center of the kitchen, maybe putting in some can lights for optimal light in the space, and wrapping the odd little beam above the peninsula so it looks more intentional and not just a weird bump on the ceiling. Oh and giving everything a fresh coat of white paint.

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We’ve got a lot of work to do. We definitely didn’t do this whole thing in the most efficient way and it’s been a huge learning experience, but we’re trucking along and chipping away at each project on our very long to do list.

Shake Shake Shake

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It’s way more fun to go out to cool places with Jack now that he can enjoy them as a little kid. One of his new favorite spots is Shake Shake Shake in Tacoma’s stadium district. He doesn’t usually get much in the way of sweet treats so I think the milkshake may have blown his mind a little bit.

If you’re looking for a fun, family friendly spot to grab a classic burger, fries, and shake, Shake Shake Shake is definitely a perfect (and very instagrammable) spot that’s a must-try. It’s just a short walk from the historic Stadium High School which was featured in 10 Things I Hate About You, and there are tons of other great small businesses and restaurants to check out in the surrounding few blocks. I suspect I’ll find myself popping into Shake Shake Shake many more times this summer on the hot days when a shake sounds like the perfect antidote to the heat.


Photos by
Amy Vaughn Photography

Jack's first Easter egg hunt!

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We went to Jack’s first Easter Egg Hunt today! Last year we spent Easter weekend with my family out on the peninsula so we didn’t go to any egg hunts. This year we stayed in town and as I was playing with him in the park one day last week I saw a sign advertising an egg hunt in the park, so I took note and made a plan for us to go. I was excited because I knew he’d have a blast, two is a super fun age.

I got this super adorable bunny hat before Jack was born and have been waiting and waiting for it to fit him and this year it fit him perfectly! I didn’t have any “easter-y” baskets but I stole a basket from one of my house plants for him to fill with eggs and it worked just right! We’ve got a neighborhood egg hunt tomorrow so I’m debating going to that one too, but we might just chill for the rest of the weekend and enjoy the sunny weather! I hope your holiday weekend is wonderful!

The Brave House is... an Airbnb!

Best Tacoma Family Airbnb

That’s right! Our cozy little home is now on Airbnb! You might be wondering, “well wait… where are you going to live then?” and that answer is: the flip house! I haven’t been able to do much work on the flip house because my only free time is during Jack’s naps… and I kind of have to stay home while he naps, you know? So we are finishing the flip house enough that we can live in it (flooring in, at least one bathroom finished, kitchen functional) and then we’ll be finishing it as we live in it.

In the meantime, The Brave House will be rented out to travelers looking for a place to call home while they’re on the road! We’ve already listed her and have quite a few bookings already! I’m excited to share the home I’ve put so much heart into with others, especially because I love Tacoma and am looking forward to sharing my love for the city with those who might be experiencing it for the first time.

If you or someone you know is coming to visit the Seattle/Tacoma area and is looking for a place to stay, send them my way! I wanted to make our place very family and pet friendly because as a parent and dog-owner, I know how frustrating it can be to find a good place to stay that can accommodate my dog and is also designed with a kid in mind. I’m in the process of creating a really fun bunk room that, while available for adults, will be an especially fun space for kids. Jack’s nursery upstairs has been converted into a regular bedroom with a queen bed, there’s another bedroom on the main floor with a queen, plus the bunk room, so it’ll be able to sleep 6, and we also have a pack-and-play available for anyone with a baby or toddler who doesn’t have one or want to travel with theirs.

I’ve got a lot of fun ideas I’m thinking of incorporating but for now, we’re in the thick of finishing up some projects on our (now) Airbnb house and working our butts off to have the flip ready to move in by mid-late May! In the meantime, check out our listing and share it with anyone who’s doing some PNW travel this summer!

Luxe Sleep Vibes

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It’s been a long time since I had a new mattress. Like… before we were married. And then we sold that mattress and moved to Alaska to live with my parents where we slept on an even older mattress. Then we moved back down to Tacoma and I’m pretty sure the mattress we’ve had for the past 18 months was my brother’s old mattress. So, needless to say, when Allswell inquired to see if I’d be interested in trying out their new Luxe Hybrid mattress I was all over it.

One of the huge pains when it comes to buying a mattress is that they are so dang big, so you basically have to have them delivered in a big box truck, so having a mattress delivered to my door in a box that was (suspiciously) small, was pretty dang nice. Y’all I do not know what kind of witchcraft these new shipped-straight-to-you mattress companies use to squish and roll and vacuum pack these mattresses into a tiny box, but it’s cool.

We’ve been sleeping on our Allswell Luxe Hybrid Mattress for about a month now and it still throws me off how comfortable it is. Our old mattress is moved upstairs into Jack’s room for now and we lay on it to read bedtime stories so I get a pretty good comparison on the daily. It feels a little, I don’t know, indulgent when I lay on the new mattress. I am definitely a fan. So much so that I might be thinking of buying another one… and I’ll tell you why in my next blog post!

Allswell Luxe Hybrid Mattress | Percale Duvet Cover | Indigo Lumbar Throw Pillow all c/o Allswell
Bedframe : Ikea | Nightstands : c/o Urban Outfitters |