July 27, 2008

Extreme Home Makeover . . . the miniature version.

For Christmas, the year I turned 11, (my birthday is Christmas Eve) my dad made me a dollhouse. It was a six-room Colonial complete with a staircase, outdoor porch and shutters on all the windows. The most exciting part for me about receiving a dollhouse had nothing to do with dolls but instead had everything to do with decorating. I put shingles on the roof, hung wallpaper on the walls, carpeted the floors, tiled the porch -- grout and all -- painted, and spent every penny of my allowance on dollhouse furniture to furnish the rooms. I arranged and re-arranged the furniture -- and hid the Flintstones vitamins I didn't want to take in the little drawers of the high boy in the living room. (Yep, my mom figured out what I was doing but only after I'd filled up all those drawers.)

When Eric and I got married the dollhouse moved in with us. It's been stored in garages and basements of five different homes. During our referral wait I thought about re-doing so it would be all ready for a little girl to play with but now I'm so glad I didn't because Michal, Kenna and I have begun our own "Extreme Home Makeover." We're in the demolition phase right now.

Eric and I had already separated the stories of the house so it wouldn't get damaged while it was in storage, which is making is much easier to work on. The girls and I have removed all the existing flooring and all the existing wallpaper. (They were in charge of spraying and I was in charge of scraping!) I also removed all the existing baseboards and the tile on the porch. Next steps are to: repaint the exterior, paint and wallpaper the interior, install new baseboards, crown molding and wainscoting, and lay new wood floors both inside and on the porch.

The girls and I have been on multiple shopping trip to, as they say, "get dollhouse supplies" and the funniest thing is that the supplies haven't changed one bit. The brands and containers -- and even the wallpaper designs -- are exactly the same as the ones I bought when I was 11.

This project may not be done until the girls are 11 but we're having fun working on it together.

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