Empty House Tour

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Okay, we’re now officially Southerners, so you know what that means, right?

No, no, I’m not talking about painting my car like the General Lee from The Dukes of Hazard (but I did love that show when I was a little kid up North!)

Nope, I’m talking of course about that quintessential Southern contraction—that quaint little word that drips from every pair of smiling lips from the tobacky fields of Virginia on down to the swamps of Okefenokee.

Yep, I’m talking about “y’all.”

While I’m a bit circumspect when it comes to adopting regional vernacular (I lived in the California Bay Area for 10 years and never once uttered the word “hella”), Handan has no such compunction, and she began practicing her “y’all” on the very day we received the keys to our new house.

Now before I get the meat of this story, let me preface it by saying that Handan has been wracked by a pernicious cough these past several days.

No, she doesn’t have the ‘Rona, so don’t worry. But she’s got wicked allergies, and she’s discovering that Georgia and her sinuses are not going to be fast friends. In March, she suffered an eye-watering humdinger of an allergy attack that developed into a nasty bout of sinusitis. When I came down to visit her, I was similarly afflicted.

Fast forward about a month, and a whole new ecosystem of allergens is wafting through the air and up into her nasal passages. I’ve avoided any of March’s unpleasantness, but Handan caught a whopping gobful, and she’s been hacking and sneezing up a fuss ever since. It got so bad that she lost her voice. She sounds like a vaguely British Marge Simpson when she speaks these days.

So anyway, as I mentioned, my babes has been practicing her “y’all.”

We were waiting in the drive-through line at Starbucks over the weekend to get some people-fuel for all the moving-related activities we’ve been engaged in. Handan thought it was a grand time to start practicing. I listened to her for a bit, but man, I gotta say, she sounded like an ass!

Now just a minute madam! Before you scold me, I mean what I say. When my dearest wife said the word “y’all,” she really sounded like an ass!

Hmmm…okay, perhaps donkey would be the better word?

Oh crap, she heard me. RUN!

Anyway, Handan’s scratchy voice coupled with her Turko-British accent produced a distinctly barnyard bray whenever she uttered the quaint Southern contraction.

It went a little something like this: “Yeeeeee-AWLLLLLL! Yeeeeee-AWLLLLLLLL!! Hey, yeeeeeee-AWLLLLL!!!”

I give her full marks for enthusiasm, but she was attracting the attention of local farmers. And who knows what would happen if they stumbled upon a fat man and a donkey in the front seat of a car. I think they’ve got laws against such things down here.

But give my babes some time. I’m sure she’ll have her Southern-speak down pat before you can say “bless your little heart.”

In the meanwhile, would you guys like to see our new home? (I know there’s another word besides “you guys” that I can use, but I will not give in to peer pressure!)

Great, let’s take a gander, shall we?

By now, you’ve seen the outside.

Can you see our ghost?

He’s right there in big window over the front door. He likes to stay there night and day – in fact he never leaves that window. I guess he’s just nosy about the neighborhood goings-on.

Moving inside, here’s another look at that window. The photo is a little too bright to see the ghost, but I assure you, he’s there! 🙂

Now there seems to be a big thing down here about having a black front door, but Handan was once told up north that it is a harbinger of sickness and misfortune. When she saw the black door on our home (and every other house we looked at down here), she was uneasy about it, and it became one of the first items on her “babes-do” list.

We’ve already chosen a new color for the door, and once I get permission from The Exalted Ones (aka, the HOA Architectural Committee), I’ll be sharing that project with you. I’m joking with the funny name for the committee, of course. I know some people have horror stories about their HOAs, but so far our seems to be great. I’ve already met one member of the Architectural Committee, and he seems perfectly reasonable. Not at all the three-headed monster I’ve read about in other HOAs!

Here are some more shots of the foyer.

To the right of the entrance after walking inside is a small room that will become my office.

To the left of the entrance is the dining room. It’s a nice-looking room with a tray ceiling and wainscoting.

But, uhh, those walls. Yeah, I’m gonna have to paint them something a little less…red. And those curtains.


The chandelier isn’t too bad, but it’s going to need a paint job.

Moving on to the living room…

Beautiful room with soaring ceilings.

We love the built-ins that flank the gas fireplace.

We’ll never want for light in this room!

But those carpets.

And the carpets in the study and the dining room…

They are old, stained, discolored and buckled.

We’ve decided to tear them out and install new hardwood of the same style as the existing flooring – a simple red oak plank. While we’re at it, we’re going to have all of the existing floors sanded bare, and then we’ll stain the whole lot a darker color.

This is not a DIY job, so we’ll be paying pros to do it right.

Just off the living room is the guest bathroom. This is perhaps the oddest thing about this house. Both Handan and I keep wanting to walk into either the pantry or the laundry room (both off of the kitchen) to answer Nature’s persistent call, but nope – the downstairs bathroom is off the far end of the living room, spitting distance from the front door.

Yes, that’s a huge pack of toilet paper over there. How do you think we paid for the house??

Okay, I haven’t told Handan this, so she will read it here first at the same time that you are, madam. Here’s the thing: I actually like the wallpaper in here.

I know, I know, it’s hideous, and I know its not going to stay, but I gotta admit. I really don’t mind it, and more than that, I actually like it.

Hey, we’re all allowed our little quirks, right?

Okay, let’s move into the kitchen – the most important room in the house (in my humble opinion).

The kitchen is huge. Massive. Almost too big.

Here is the breakfast nook and door to the deck.

Across from the nook is the kitchen proper.

We already have big BIG plans for this kitchen. Stay tuned, because this is going to be a massive undertaking!

There’s a big bonus space at the far end of the kitchen.

In some cultures, this space might be turned into another bedroom, but this is America, so we’ll probably just install a jumbo TV so we can liquefy our brains while heating up the Hamburger Helper.

That door to the right in the photo above is the laundry room.

Do you know what I love about our new laundry room?

Just behind me in the picture above is a laundry chute. It originates in our master closet upstairs.

I’ve waited almost half a century to play Bombs Away with my dirty unmentionables in a laundry chute.

My wait is over.

Bonus points if I can land a direct hit on Handan’s head while she’s transferring a load to the washer.

So another interesting thing about this house (at least to a Northerner) is that is has two staircases leading to the second floor. Next to the laundry room is the back stair.

I love it! It’s basically a direct path from the kitchen to the master bedroom. In other words, it’s a carpeted superhighway from Dreamland to Meatsville.

Looking up from the front stairs, you’ll notice…

Well, carpet, I guess. You’ll notice a whole lot of carpet.

Not bad stuff. Easy on the toes. Feels good in the winter.

But it doesn’t really stand out in photos – at least not in the way I’m looking for.

Remember, for better or for worse, we’re bloggers, and we have to always make sure our house and lives look perfect.

Pffffft, I’m totally kidding! Our lives are usually a slow-motion train wreck. But if our lives aren’t perfect, we can at least try to make the house look as good as it can. And the first floor and main stair carpeting just isn’t cutting it for us.

So like I mentioned earlier – we’ll be letting some seasoned pros put hardwood on the floors and on the stairs. We can’t WAIT to see how it turns out!

Moving upstairs now…

This is the guest bedroom, aka Mom and Dad’s room.

When my parents come to visit, they’ll have their own private wing of the upstairs.

Lucky them!

They’ll have their own private space and a full bath to boot.

Looking from Mom and Dad’s room towards the other end…

Another architectural element I’m not familiar with but have seen in many houses down here is the catwalk.

Don’t think for a second that I won’t be donning my Calvins and strutting my stuff on this catwalk while Handan watches in shock and horror from the living room sofa below.

Hey, when you got it, you flaunt it, amirite?

If The Boy had a cherry setup in our old digs, he’s going to be living like a Kardashian in this house (minus the bubble butt).

His sleeping quarters are directly across from the master bedroom.

And because he’s our only child, he makes out like a thief in the night. Here’s his other room:

This room will be his TV and Playstation room. Oh, and see that little room in back?

It’s supposed to be a closet, but the promise of a freshly starched shirt hanging in rigid conformity with its buttoned-down brethren doesn’t do much to capture the imagination of a young hormone factory, so we’ve decided to install two desks, one along each wall. This kid is going to have about 15 linear feet of desk space on which to study, write papers and computer code, learn about the wonders of the world and any number of other intellectual pursuits.

Or he’ll just play online video games with his friends and see how many pairs of smelly teen socks it takes to bury 15 linear feet of desk space.

You decide which is more likely.

And that there in the middle of the picture below is his bathroom. It’s a Jack and Jill bathroom, so it has two sinks.

Lucky bugger. He can wash each hand in a separate sink!

Moving on from His Nibs’ quarters, we find ourselves in the master bedroom surrounded by an ocean of light pink.

Ye gods! What fresh hell is this?

Nothing was spared the pink brush, not even the poor ceiling.

I have a lot of jobs in queue, but painting the Pink Palace holds a special place in my heart.

But color aside, there’s a hell of a lot of room in this master bedroom. It clocks in at 417 square feet, which is the exact same size as the studio apartment Handan had been living in since February.

And light? Why, it’s practically like being outside!

This alcove awash in glorious sunlight is the future sleep nook for Penny and Pepper. For years they had to sleep outside of our bedroom, and Penny was separated from me by a glass door. Now her wildest dreams will come true as she’ll be allowed to sleep near Daddy with no barriers between us. I don’t know if I’ve ever mentioned it, but Penny is a total Nervous Nelly when she’s not near me.

The bedroom is big and all, but nothing prepared me for the first time I laid eyes on the master bath, aka The Blue Lagoon.

There’s enough open floor space in there to get in a little ballroom dancing between bowel movements if you’re into that sort of thing.

Ballroom dancing, I mean. Everybody’s into bowel movements, whether they care to admit it or not.

Anyway, there’s enough real estate in the middle of that tiled expanse to put a fountain or hire a Mariachi band to lift our spirits while we scrub the plaque from our teeth.

Yeah, those golden fixtures will have to go someday, as will the baby blue, but for now, there are more important projects to tackle.

The thing that really boggles my mind is that they could build a master bath that could easily qualify for its own zip code, but then they shoehorn a dinky shower stall into a forlorn corner and call it a job well done.

Who designs these houses? Certainly not anyone who actually lives in a house. This bathroom could have had an epic shower stall. It could have been like washing in a rain forest! But instead they went with the smallest brass ‘n’ glass enclosure they could find at Home Depot.

We’ll be giving some thought to the shower. Someday we’ll be tackling this room as well, and I’m keen on an Amazon Rainforest shower experience!

That doorway to the right leads into the master closet.

It has some potential for renovation, and my babes already has a really cool plan for that laundry chute. Don’t worry, most of it will remain as a laundry chute (I’m not going to let her ruin my childhood dream of lobbing my small clothes on her unsuspecting head as she toils below), but she has a great plan to optimize the space. More on that later.

Oh, by the way, I’ll spare you the Master Throne. It’s in a room that’s literally about 1 square foot bigger than the Throne, so there’s really nothing to show. We’ve noticed the movement in Georgia (see what I did there) towards small bathrooms, but our Master Crapper takes the cake.

Four walls and a toilet…

‘Nuff said.

All said.

And that leaves us with the basement.

The massive, high-ceiling’d, unfinished basement.

Here’s another basement stair project waiting to happen

That speck in the distance is my babes.

Great light for a basement!

And over in the dark half…

My new underground lair workshop.

This will be the woodcutting room…

This will be the sanding and staining room…

There’s almost no power down here, so I’m having an electrician install a second 100 amp panel and wire the basement for outlets to code. Once my machines arrive, I’ll get this place humming with life!

So what do you think of the new Navage Patch? I’ll show you the outside of the house and the surrounding yard in a future post, but now you’ve got a good idea of what we’ve got and what we’ve got planned. And there are already so many projects I haven’t mentioned.

You’ll just have to wait and see. 😉

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  1. You’ve moved to my home state! And I’m pretty sure there are *no* laws against that whole fat man and donkey situation. lol It’s a beautiful home, can’t wait to see what y’all do with it! Hopefully your allergy situation will improve after you’ve lived there a season or two. Mine are usually horrific each time we move, but after the first year it improves. That GA pollen don’t play though, that’s for sure.

      1. Ive lived in Georgia all my life. The allergies are horrible every year. Woke up a couple weeks ago with no voice. My husband wants me to go outside with the kids and I would rather wait until winter.
        That is a beautiful house though. I can’t wait to see what y’all do with the outside.

        1. Wow, Handan will really need an allergist from all I’m reading! I’m thankful the allergies only hit me a little! 🙂

  2. I dig your new digs. Amazing house with so much potential! You are going to have so much creative fun there 🙂

    1. Good Lord! What do you do for a living? This is a mansion! Love the future workshop, seems like there is plenty of room for storing the scaffolding, lol. Congratulations on the new estate, looking forward to seeing more DIY projects. Stay healthy!

  3. Beautiful home. So much space! Can’t wait to see after you put all your talents to work on it. Welcome to the South y’all!

  4. What a fantastic house! I’m in Ontario, Canada – as a home stager I see lots of these kinds of houses. And wonder the same thing about the bathrooms? Love reading your posts! Looking forward to seeing what you do here. And as a weird side note… I will start talkin’ with a southern drawl, just cause it’s so dang fun! lol

  5. Wow! That place is huge! You will have enough projects to keep you busy for a long time. I look forward to seeing what you do to the place.

    1. Alas, Iost my big, beautiful home in my divorce 18 years ago; so I’m living vicariously through you and Handan! Purchased a duplex with my daughter and while we didn’t have a large budget or space we each decorated our sides to suit our individual styles. Look forward to what you do with your beautiful canvas.

      1. Thanks, Gail! You can do a lot with any budget and any size space! Hope we can give you some good ideas in the coming months!

  6. I’m sure it’s a lovely house and I look forward to seeing your renovations, but it is just too much for me. I’m glad it’s yours, enjoy! 🙂

    1. I’m originally from Texas, living in Alabama…my brother and fam are your neighbors in Suwanee. You’ll love the area! (BTW, it’s ‘y’all’ pronounced ‘yawl’.) It won’t be long before y’all are blessing hearts all over the place…
      Hopefully you’ll accommodate to the pollen and other allergens. May take a bit. Welcome to the South!

      1. Oh cool! We have so many blog-related neighbors now! Yeah, we’ll get Handan sorted out with her allergies. Poor my babes – she’s hacking all over the place! 🙂

  7. Totally understand the allergy thing. I moved from the Midwest, where they were awful, to the Mountain West where they’re not quite so bad, but different. I’ve found that ingesting local honey helps somewhat. You might want to give it a try. That said, I’m so happy for your family. What a wonderful house in which to make lasting memories…and lots of fodder for blogs. Best wishes on settling into your new home. I’m looking forward to all the projects to come.

  8. Wow, you have sooo much room! It’s huge!
    With some updates, this will be a showpiece. Yeah, that pink palace and the bordello red in the dining room would be the first to go with me too along with the carpets. Just think with all that space in the master bath, you can put in a freestanding tub and a huge shower with body sprays, rainfall shower head, the whole nine yards. I work for a company that’s parent company is a plumbing and bathroom supply distributor so I have access to all kinds of great bathroom fixtures and equipment.

    You should have a great time making this house your new home. I see it as a source of lots of blog fodder for years to come.

      1. I work for Riverbend Home (www.riverbendhome.com) which is a home goods retailer division of FW Webb which is a B2B plumbing/hvac/piping, etc supplier. I am planning a remodel/full gut on my last bathroom by next year so I am having fun buying lighting and plumbing fixtures, freestanding tub, towel warmer (definitely cool to have) and vanity ahead of time. Not doing a DIY of this one–did the master bath and the half bath so been there, done that and will pay a contractor for the demo and build this time. I have it designed out, just want someone else to do the work. But I can save by using my employee discount on the goods from work and stashing somewhere in the house until it’s safe and in the budget for a contractor to come to rip out the 1989 relic of a bathroom.

  9. Allergies = nasal rinses for relief.
    Beautiful home with some definitely needed projects to bring it into 2020!

    1. Thank you, Natalie! And I thank you for your reminder. It is taken in the spirit is was given. I’ve certainly been know to offend from time to time, but as I’ve aged, my brash, youthful nature has mellowed considerably. Those who’ve read our blog for a while understand that we would never deliberately poke fun at any group…unless that group is me, of course! 🙂 I understand the history down here, but when I say something like “cotton-pickin,” for me, it’s coming from a childhood filled with Looney Tunes. In other words, a place of innocence. But I understand that many skins have thinned considerable over the past decade, and things aren’t what they once were, so I will check myself to make sure don’t offend…too much 😉

  10. Why Georgia? The house is amazing. I think my house would fit in that master bath. And, my house is big! Can’t wait to see what you come up with in your decorating and renovations.

    1. Thanks, Carol! We moved to Georgia for Handan’s job. She started on a new project at the airport (she’s a civil engineer)

  11. Ditto on what Linda said about local honey…DAILY! Also here in central Texas we also take stinging nettle capsules when the mountain juniper (aka cedar) blooms. Lovely house! Looking forward to seeing all your upcoming project posts!!

  12. Holy Moly, what a mansion! Congratulations on the new house. I can’t wait to see what you & Handan do to it, as you settle in and make it home.

    1. Holy bat cave Batman ( and Wayne mansion to boot ?) it’s a gorgeous house and I can’t wait to see how you make it home. FYI- I lived my entire life in upstate NY and when I came to FL never ever thought I’d utter “y’all”, but it’s a genius contraction that fits so many circumstances you will find it impossible to resist! Congratulations!

      1. I know, Barb. I’m fighting it out of a stubborn non-conformism I’ve suffered from my whole life, but I’ve no doubt I’ll be blabbing it before long with the best of them!

  13. Very nice house – totally beats what my wife and I live in. My only issue with your new monster house is the HOA. We lived in an HOA community years ago and I freakin’ hated it. If we wanted to paint the house (outside) we had to get “approval”. Once, we changed the screens on the windows with ones that had a bit more style, and the HOA threw a hissy-fit because we didn’t get their “permission” first. We finally sold that house and moved 6 miles out of town into the country. We now live in a 1300 square foot mobile home, But Hurray!!!! No more HOA!!!!
    Anyway, love the blog post and congrats on your awesome new home.

      1. Interesting? More likely a nightmare, better check them out. Especially for creative folks like y’all! Sure hope I’m wrong when it comes to your HOA. Have you seen any doors painted another color in your neighborhood? That might give you a clue as to how stringent they are.

        Looking forward to all your projects. Bless yer heart, you are in the South now. Good folks ever where except in HOA’s, lol.

        1. The good news is that there are some very colorful doors, lol! I don’t think we’ll have a problem with them. I’ve already spoken with one, and he seems like a great guy. But regardless of how awesome they turn out to be, I’ll of course have to refer to them as the Chosen Ones or the Exalted Ones or something similar. It’s just my nature! 😀

  14. Welcome to Georgia! Please don’t judge all of us by any one of us. Lovely house, which I’m sure you’ll make even lovelier. And as a retired secondary English teacher, I have to comment on y’all. First of all, kudos to you on spelling it correctly. I see signs with ya’ll and cringe. And it is plural, despite what some Pinterest posts say. Just think of the other Indo-European languages. They all have separate singular and plural second person pronouns. ( tu and vous in French for ex.). I’ll spare you my whole lecture. Y’all is just the Southern second person plural pronoun. Beats youse guys in my opinion! If you hear someone saying it to one person, it’s because he is referring to the whole family. Sorry to digress from your house. I love your witty comments and eagerly await the projects I know you will find to do. Best Wishes.

    1. So far, everyone we’ve met has been fantastic, no matter what walk of life. There are bad people and idiots everywhere, so I wouldn’t presume to judge any group based on a few outliers. I know the stereotypes for folks down South, but throughout my life (and on my cross-country motorcycle trip), those who might garner ridicule up North were some of the most decent people I’ve ever encountered. Oh, and y’all is not even in the same league as youse guys, lol! And how about yinz? PA has youse guys beat with that one!

  15. Welcome to Georgia. Thing One: Find a good allergist . There are a lot of them here. You will need one. Thing Two: buy a really good nasal spray like Flonase or similar. This type is not the typical decongestant…but, your allergist can point you to the right one for you. You might as well stockpile it, you’re going to need it.
    Don’t worry about the Northern accent if you are in the Atlanta area. We have lots of Yankee transplants so we are multi-cultural. Also note: there is Southern and redneck Southern so be sure you know the difference before adding to your vocabulary.
    Pack away your snow stuff. We barely have a winter anymore much less much snow. Most snow is gone by mid-afternoon unless you are in North Georgia. You picked a great time to move. You can enjoy a southern spring and its glories. Well, accept for the sinus infections but you’ll have an allergist by next spring. Sorry about your yellow car and roof. I forgot to mention the pine pollen. Did you notice all the pine trees in GA?
    Anyway, y’all are very welcome and we hope you enjoy living in the South. (South is ALWAYS capitalized!)

    1. Hi Connie, I’ve already put the allergist on my list of must-calls! We’re so happy to be here in the South, and I already consider it my home. Though I grew up in the North, lately it’s left me wanting.

  16. Wow, you found a unique beast of a house just waiting for you to put your spin on it. I can’t wait to see all the content you’ll get from your improvements. All the updates will provide me entertainment for years! Better get started 😉 (I need entertainment these days.)

  17. Check out the latest blog from Young House Love. Sherry Petersik mentions the air purifier she LOVES and swears by for her allergies Of course, with this large house, you may need ten of them! lol

  18. Congratulations! Your new home is spacious and beautiful! It will be very interesting to see what y’all do with it. Get your wife some local honey, teaspoon a day or maybe more to start off.

  19. Such a beautiful home and wow the opportunities for projects is almost endless. Eagerly looking forward to the first post. Have Handan get some local honey and start taking a teaspoon full every day. It will help build her immune system to the pollen around your area. Much better than taking allergy pills. Many blessing to you. Welcome to the South – ya’ll.

  20. Great house! I can’t wait to see your transformation!
    As a side note. I’ll bet a navage will help those savage Navage allergies 😉

    1. LOL! Did I ever mention that I used to own the Navage.com domain? I sold it to Martin Hoke (the Navage inventor and former Congressman) back in 2008. Great guy, great product. They’ve come a long way from the first model released about 10 years ago! I think I will have to get one for Handan!

      1. Haha! Yes, I remember! That’s why I suggested it! Try using local honey as well, if you can find it! Apparently, it helps with allergies if the bees have visited the offending plants in their travels.

  21. Two words…LOCAL HONEY!! Great for helping with those allergies.
    LOVE the new digs! My mind was churning with the endless remodel possibilities…so much fun! The kitchen would be my first project. The kitchen is the heart of the home and everything centers around it, IMO. I had to get a new kitchen faucet and it had my husband wondering how a new faucet could result in half a house remodel, lol.
    Looking forward to the remodel pics and of course, your wonderful dialogue! Y’all have a great day!

    1. Yep, we’re on board with the local honey, and you are so right about the kitchen. Stay tuned, as that project is coming up soon!

  22. That house is sure something. Mine is 3500 square feet. And a private beach. Indoor pool. Looks like a brown barn kinda. Use essential oils for sinuous and allergies. Buy a diffuser or 20 and let them send out that good stuff. I use one called deep sleep and sleep right through the night now. Haven’t done that for years. New houses and spouses are such fun you all.

    1. Private Beach?? So…you want a roommate? LOL! Good tip on the essential oils. Handan has a bunch of them somewhere and a diffuser. 🙂

  23. Wow! that house is a biggin! I can’t wait to see the changes you make to make it your own.
    p.s.-I like the wallpaper too.

  24. Very nice house – cannot wait to see what you all ( another way of saying y’all) will do with it! Absolutely drooling over the basement! What a fabulous crafting space that is!

    Handan gets an A+ for trying “y’all”. Like the people native to most areas, we love and respect those who want to speak our language. Keep up the good work, Handan!

  25. Guacamole that’s a big one! I’m glad I’m not the one having to clean it-lol. You will have lots of fun decorating and remodeling but hope you have lots of furniture! Agree on the carpets and red dining room and foresee granite counter tops and a professional stove top in the kitchen. You will be busy for a long time for sure and can’t wait to see your projects.

  26. Whoa! You did great! This house has great bones. Can’t wait to see what you will come up with. Hope Handan feels better.

    1. It really does, Rev! Handan will be all good son enough. No amount of coughing and sneezing can dampen her high spirits about living in the South! 🙂

  27. Love, love, love your new home. I can’t wait to see what y’all do to make it even more beautiful.

  28. The house is huge. That should keep you busy for awhile. I’m looking forward to seeing what you do to it.

  29. Awesome house, will be watching for any reno you’ll be doing. Heads up, it’s prounced “yawl” and it doesn’t should like you’re saying “you all”, one word, never two…lol. Also, “bless your heart” is sometimes a great southern way to insult, used instead of actually calling someone an idiot, but sometimes it just means “bless your heart” depending on who and how it’s said. We can be a weird bunch but I wouldn’t have it any other way. WELCOME TO THE SOUTH, we’re mighty glad to have ya.

    1. Kathie, that is what made Handan’s pronunciation so funny, lol! She was TRYING to say “yawl” LOLOLOL! But because of her accent and allergies it came out as yeeeeeAWL! Oh, it makes me crack up just thinking about it!!

  30. Wow! Now that’s a big house! I can see so much potential! I really like the wallpaper too! I was surprised to see so much carpet! Where I live in Ontario, Canada it is rare to see carpet except maybe in a bedroom. I got rid of mine because of allergies so maybe it will help you both when you rip it up. In the meantime, if you want to get those marks out of the carpets from heavy furniture put an ice cube on the spots and let it melt. Soak up the water with a cloth and then fluff the pile with a spoon or your fingers.
    Congratulations on a beautiful home! I can’t wait to see your first project!

    1. Thank you, Giselle! Carpet seems to be more of a thing down here. All the houses we looked at had a mix of wood and carpet on the first floor and all carpet on the second floor. You’d except to find it more up North doe to the cold winters but it’s just the opposite. Not sure why it’s so popular down here, though from the the few people I’ve met, it seems like most have or are planning on removing it for hardwood or laminate.

  31. That is such a great house!! A word of caution, as a true Southerner, I approve of the use of “y’all”, at every opportunity. However, “Bless your heart” is a bit tricky! It sounds really sweet, and can be used that way, but it is OFTEN accompanied by a serious look of disdain, and said VERY SLOWLY, and carefully! LOL! (It’s a bit of a double-edged sword!) Ha!

    1. So I’ve heard, lol! No worries, I have no plans on ever using it in conversation, but I’ll make sure Handan knows! 😀

  32. Beautiful house, I love all the light. I’m just glad I don’t have to clean all that space. My little 1300 square foot townhouse is plenty for me. Although I would like to have a dedicated quilt and craft room instead of having to use part of the master bedroom. Can’t wait to see what changes you make. Congratulations!

  33. What an awesome house! Please be sure to show up before and after pix as you change stuff out! Personally, I loved the pink bedroom, but, then, I’m female and old enough to need flattering colors for my aging skin tones! I liked the wallpaper, too. Hope Handan feels better really soon–for all your sakes! Have really missed y’all!

    1. Thank you, Kathy! I took over 130 “before” pics of the house, so we’ll have a before/after for every room project!

  34. I’ve read all the comments. Other than congrats, I’ll not reiterate. I will say that I am looking forward to your projects. I’ve missed them. Thank you for the house tour.

  35. HOLIE MOLIE…y’all “Hit the JackPOT of Gold!!” The home is enormous…you must be in sheer delight…or, terror…where to start… We WILL be waiting… HAPPY HOME!!! franki

  36. Holy moly y’all; it ain’t but 30 miles from me! I poke fun, but true all the same! We lived in the north Georgia mountains. My husbands job transferred home to winder, ga. Y’all go lucky on the house, we searched for almost 3 months and finally went to binding 24 hours ago! Literally! Anyway, great house with even greater potential. HOA=you are pissing me off where I come from. I pulled a contract last week on a house that was not clearly stated HOA. I truly did! Anywho, welcome to the ATL. (Ask me how I really feel about hellanta! ) I hope Han gets to feeling better really soon. Y’all stay safe and out of covid’s way. Hope

    1. Thank you, Neighbor Hope! From what I hear, this HOA isn’t bad. One thing’s for sure: they’re going to know us very well very soon, lol!

  37. What a gorgeous home! Can’t wait to see what you two do with it. Looking forward to your next blog.

  38. How fun! So much new blog content awaits. That is a huge house; I hope it came with a house keeper! Looking forward to all the exciting projects you’ll share. And I agree that the carpet must go, particularly with allergies to worry about. Congrats!

  39. Congratulations on finalizing your move and on your beautiful new home! Our family now live in Texas but we lived in Georgia for many years and miss it terribly. If you are looking for a great way to learn about all that Georgia has to offer, before heading out into the pollen and the heat, go to gpb.org (or GPB Now on a streaming device) and check out the shows Georgia Outdoors and Georgia Traveler! There are many other offerings on GPB (Georgia’s PBS TV) but those are my favorite for getting outside and loving Georgia. And if you ever find yourselves heading to the Gulf coast for a little getaway may I suggest heading down the road along the Chattahoochee River and checking out Newnan (fun shopping, location of many TV and Movie filming locations, and The Coweta County African American Heritage Museum and Research Center, or Caswell House), Callaway Gardens and the Roosevelt House in tiny but beautiful Pine Mountain, Columbus (amazing Saturday Farmer’s Market and other fun activities downtown (but marketed as Uptown Columbus) and Home to Fort Benning and the Infantry Museum). From Fort Benning head out past the Sate Park going south. Be sure to stop in Richland at Richland Rum (oh baby!), Bluffton to see the amazing White Oak Pastures and all that Mr Will Harris and his family have to offer. Next, make your way to beautiful Thomasville, GA (home to the Thomasville Rose Show & Festival, Sweet Grass Dairy and their award winning cheeses, The Big Oak (grown from an acorn in 1685 and still standing today), Jonah’s Fish & Grits (BEST Shrimp & Grits EVER!) and so much more. Lastly, head 30 minutes down the road in to Tallahassee and the Florida Panhandle to experience some fun Big (small) City Coastal charm! And if you just aren’t ready to go home yet, dash west over to Panama City Beach, Destin, Pensacola, or Orange Beach and work on your sand castle game! Of course, since you are bloggers and DIYers, keep an eye out for the (literally) hundreds of flea markets, antique fairs, and arts festivals!

    Didn’t mean for this to be so long but I hope I have contributed to your excitement to be in Georgia. Plus, I think I just planned my OWN summer vacation! LOL

    Be Well!

    1. Thank you, Heather!! This is a goldmine of great information! I will save this to refer to later once we get settled in and have time to go exploring! 🙂

  40. Wow! The house is fabulous but we will miss you here in Connecticut! Stay safe and healthy and best wishes in your new location.

  41. Hello your friend from right up the road in Ringgold Ga. I must say it looks like a mansion. It’s beautiful. First I want to address Handan’s allergy situation. I had horrible allergies year round. It seems like in the South there’s always some kind of allergen to get the snot flowing and eyes watery and itchy. I started taking Zyrtec 365 days a year and the allergies are minimal if any. Order generic Zyrtec from Amazon and you can get it very cheap. Second, I love the wallpaper in the powder room too. You know hummingbirds bring good luck. Maybe if you put some wainscoting at the bottom it wouldn’t look so overwhelming to Handan. I didn’t notice if it had crown molding but that also helps a room. Order that Zyrtec!!!!!

    1. Thanks for the tip, Stacye! I think Zyrtec is the one medication Handan hasn’t tried, so I will definitely get some for her today! 🙂

  42. I was wondering why I hadn’t seen any posts in awhile. I hope you enjoy your new digs and the projects that come with it.

  43. Wowsers! What a house! Good luck with it. Lucky Penny will now get to sleep nearby her “emotional support human”. Best wishes to you all! ( or “y’all” if you will, lol ).

    1. Thank you, Susan! Yep, Our girls will be in heaven down here. Warm weather for Pepper and Penny can sleep near Daddy, lol!

  44. I LOVE the house!! Y’all are going to have so much fun! As a new transplant (Ohio to Florida a year ago), the allergies down here are wicked. I use Flonase, Zyrtec & Hot Ginger tea to cope. I am slowly getting my place fixed up and gardening. Oh my, the plants!!!!!! Can’t wait to see what you will work on first!!!

  45. You know you’ve really become a Southerner when you bring out “all y’all”! Good luck with the new place!

  46. Your new house is GEORGEOUS (sic) and HUGE. And so beautiful. With so much potential. I don’t remember if you said what year it was built, but don’t be surprised if there is already a hardwood floor underneath all that carpet! There are many homes in Colorado that were built in the early 1970s that had beautiful floors underneath the carpeting. Many homeowners (2nd or 3rd owners) didn’t know until they ripped up the carpet to replace it. And then didn’t replace it. Might still need to refinish the wood, if there is some.

    You’re right – so much light! You’ll have fun decorating everything, choosing new curtains for the elegant red dining room. How exciting!

    So sad about the allergies. That can spoil all the fun. I hope y’all get better with time.

    Enjoy your new digs.

    1. Thank you, Sheri! The house was built in ’98, and the carpet is original. We’ll have a great time sprucing it it up!

  47. We moved here 2 years ago, to this house. We had floors, rooms painted, carpet torn out, new hardwoods put down, crown molding put in, and cabinets in the entire place professionally painted, before we moved in!!! Best gift to ourselves! Bathrooms and kitchen had tile floors.
    Half bath, double crown molding and chair rail will update that room to beautiful!!!!
    Allergies are painful here!!!
    My first husband and I moved to Ga. twice!!!! It is a beautiful state!!

    1. Oh, that’s the way to do it, Carrie! We’ll be having some work done before we move our stuff in, but most of it will be spread over the years as we tackle it room by room! 🙂

  48. So looking forward to yall’s (!) magic touch in the new digs! I know I missed it….but why the move?

    1. Hi Terresa, Handan is a civil engineer and she got a job within her same company working on a big infrastructure project at Atlanta airport. We’d been eyeing a move by 2022 anyway, but we just moved up our timeline. It was time to get out of the Northeast!

  49. SOOO glad y’all have settled in The South, MY HOME and the bestest place to live in the world, no question, even with those pesky allergies – they got pills and shots for that for a quick fix, and I’m so sorry about the Babes and y’all suffering so. However, old-timers like myself will tell you there’s a simpler fix that’s easier and actually works, and I wouldn’t lie to a New Southerner: Start eating at least a teaspoon of LOCAL HONEY every day, at least through the summer, and you can probably skip the rest of the year if you prefer (but honey is yummy, so…). Then in January, start back up, because all that pollen that bees spread? It’s in their system, they take it back to the hive and, yep, make honey with it, and if we eat the honey, we build up immunity. Truth. Many allergists (especially the Southern ones 🙂 will tell you this if they’re “any account,” as we say. And don’t worry about the “y’all”; it’ll come out natural one day, and it’ll probably make you cry when it happens… but hey, say it with pride anyway.

    1. Awwww, thanks for the welcome, Vickie, and thank you for the explanation about the local honey! Handan has been taking it for the past couple of weeks, but I guess it’s going to take longer than that to really build up her immune system. Once I get our doctor situation sorted out, I will make sure she sees an allergist to get some quick relief (hopefully!)

  50. I just found you guys/y’all ?in October 2019 with your post about the cool skeletons in the laundry basket. Fell in love with your ?backyard, your ?DIYS and your sense of humor.?At first I was bummed out because you were moving and I wouldn’t be able to enjoy what else you and Handan would pull out of your sleeve. But now, I understand that basically, you and Handan “had your fill” of the old house. And the bonus is, I get to watch the both of you, from the beginning, in the front row!! The universe works in mysterious ways! Looking forward to all the wonderful creations on your new path! Congratulations! Sending a speedy recovery to Handan❤

    1. Hi Cindy Lee, and Welcome! (I know you’ve been with us since October, but you still deserve a welcome.) We are so looking forward to turning this house into our home. You’re right about the old one – it was time to go. We put so much work into it, and we loved it, but it was time to move on – to move SOUTH! We can’t wait to start all over down here!

  51. The things you discover AFTER you move somewhere new! I moved to a lovely island not knowing mosquitoes and midges rule this land. I have severe allergic reactions to Midge bites. I’ve been researching Oregano Oil for allergies and it seems it’s a real solution. I’ve ordered some online and I’m praying it works for me. I go stir crazy when I can’t get outside.
    Here’s a link to one treatment method. Others say one drop a day orally.
    The house looks amazing and I’d be itching to renovate. Have fun!

  52. Very spacious and lovely light. Looking forward to the changes. My son went to SCAD and the summers are killer hot. For the allergies, check out NHBotanicals.com for all natural remedies that are amazing.

  53. I have been teaching from home and have missed reading posts from you. Today, as I drink my coffee before making a math video for my 8th graders, I felt like I just did a zoom meeting with a dear friend and got caught up on what’s going on in his life. Thank you for today’s smile and congratulations on the beautiful (and soon to be transformed) house. Looking forward to seeing the updates and Handan’s wonderful projects (yours too)!

  54. Dang! Nice homestead y’all got there. BTW, I was born here in the GA. So if Handan needs any lessons on how to speak Southern, or sutherin, just let me know. And for y’all….tell her to put less emphasis on the yeeeeee syllable and just draw out the end of the word. Like yawlllllllllllll. Welcome to Georgia, or Jawja. I hope you like sweet tea and ‘cue!

    1. Thanks, Jenny! We love sweet tea and barbecue – in fact I’m pretty good with a smoker myself! Can’t wait to make some for the neighbors 🙂

  55. I concur with most of the comments except the advice about the allergies. I have dealt with allergies all my life and the best thing I ever did was to go the an allergist/pulmonologist who did extensive testing to determine just what I was allergic to. The list was very long. I took shots for 2 years and now, except for very heavy pollen, I am allergy free. I was even able to get my husband to get the tests and get shots for one cycle, which helped him immensely.
    The other thing that no one has mentioned is getting your HVAC system checked out and if necessary, cleaned of all dust and pollen. If not cleaned then your entire beautiful house will just continue to add to your miseries.
    The advice to use local honey is a misnomer because honey bees will fly many miles away from the hive to find the pollen they need to bring back to the hive. Also, if it is raw honey it may contain some of the pollen that you and your wife are actually allergic to. Just a word to the wise about this subject to be careful.
    Welcome to the south. The house is absolutely beautiful and I look forward to seeing what you and your wife do to transform it into your dream home and probably the most beautiful home in the area.

    1. Yep, I’ve already scheduled her first doctor visit, and from there we’ll get to an allergist. Regarding our HVAC ducts – I’ve already looked inside, and they are FILTHY! It’s on my list to get cleaned sooner rather then later. Good tip on that!

  56. Welcome to the south. I’m a North Carolina girl, born an’ bred. Love the house. I think my house would fit in your kitchen! But I just had to say I love the names for the dogs. My name is Peppi and my sister is Penny. Glad you’re back. Looking forward to following along with the remodel.

  57. I am 100% excited to see al the future projects that you guys do. Your projects have inspired me to do more than just the basic level of crafting that I used to do. So sending all my love from the UK and I hope Handan is feeling better soon, allergies are awful.