Welcome to Kansas | House Tour (Before)
Last week I shared with you all that we have finally and officially moved into our latest home in the great state of Kansas! (By the way, I was so excited to get comments and Inst-messages welcoming me to Kansas from so many readers! Who knew I had such a great following here in Kansas! Hugs to all of you who made me feel so (virtually!) welcome!) This last week or so has been a flurry of activity on this end as we get settled into our “new” home. We’ve made awesome progress…but before I start to give updates and show you some of my first few projects here (yes, I’ve already been working on some things!), I wanted to give you the full “before” house tour. I realize that looking at pictures of a random, empty house isn’t exactly exciting. But I like to show what we’re starting with and share some of my first impressions of our new digs before diving in. It’s always fun for me to refer back to this post as the months go on and the spaces evolve. This post also serves as the launch of the latest/newest round of posts and projects here on the blog! The official start of our next chapter, if you will. So let’s get to it!
As I explained in this post, we decided to live off base here in Kansas. We’ve lived on-base for three out of four of our last duty stations, and I was really craving a change. We weighed a ton of pros and cons; when decision time came, off-base felt like a better fit for our family at this point in our lives. Only time will tell if we made the right call, but so far, we’re really, really happy!
This house is a split-level house, so also for the first time: we have stairs! (In all honesty, my legs were really sore the first two days from all the up-and-down the steps! That sounds a bit pathetic – I swear I workout! – but it’s quite the change after 10 years of single-story living!). This house has four bedrooms, three full bathrooms, an attached garage, and a finished, walk-out basement with a landscaped and fenced-in backyard. It’s just a touch bigger than our last house…so everything is fitting really well. We are loving the fourth bedroom, so many extra closets and an actual backyard. In general: we are LOVING living in a REAL, normal house for the first time ever!
The layout is a pretty standard split-entry: as you walk in the front door, you can either go up or down. Let’s go up first!
As you walk up the stairs, immediately to the left is a large family room with a single large window (that lets in amazing light!) and a fireplace. The ceilings are really high and there is a ceiling fan, which has been very welcome during these hot Kansas weeks so far! (By the way…who knew Kansas was so HOT?!?!? And we’re coming from the south!)
As you face the back of the house, to the right is the dining room…behind that wall (in the above photo) is the kitchen.
The dining room is a nice size with real hardwood floors and more big windows. The light in this house is so great, and I am already getting much better pictures than in our last home!
Adjoining the dining room is the kitchen. I am so thankful to have windows in the kitchen after our last cave-like kitchen…and this is our first time having an island. I am already in love with it. Admittedly, all the brown is not my favorite and we’re a smidge low on cabinet space, but the layout and natural light have really won me over!
Right off the dining room/stairway is a hallway that leads down to three bedrooms and a hallway bathroom. The hall also has two closets: a coat closet and a linen closet (the two first doors there on the left).
The first door on the right is Henry’s room. It’s a nice size with a good closet.
The second door on the right as you go down the hall is an almost-identical sized room which will serve as Greg’s office. Yep – separate offices this year…YAY!!!
At the end of the hall is a very basic bathroom…
Across the hall is the master bedroom, which I LOVE! It has nice high ceilings, great natural light, and so much more space than we had in our last home.
The en suite bathroom (the double doors on the right in the photo above) is such a huge upgrade from our last teeny-tiny bathroom…a spacious vanity with a soaker tub, a shower, and a window make it feel pretty luxurious!
This master also features TWO closets!! Forgive my “shouting,” but Greg and I have been sharing a closet for the last four years and have hated it. There’s a reason you never saw the closet reveal in our last home – it was always a disaster. I’m so excited we have our own spaces! It’s nothing fancy, but it’s all mine! You can get a peek at how I organized it already here!
That’s the whole upstairs. Let’s head back down…
We have a “room under the stairs” for extra storage and tornado shelter 😉
Just to the right of the storage area, is my new office. Friends! This room is big and well-lit, and I am so excited to get to work in here!
The room has this 8″ ledge that runs around 2 walls in the room. At first I wasn’t sure what to do with it, but it’s actually coming in pretty handy!
And my favorite part of this house? Right off my office is a downstairs family room which we will be using as a playroom. This separate space for Henry and (more importantly!) his toys has already been a game changer for us. (We may have already been to IKEA when I snapped these photos!
One of the main reasons we ultimately were swayed to go off base was because the craft room and playroom were separated off downstairs…and…this…
A walkout to a huge, fenced-in yard with a great patio and deck! We have never had a yard like this, or a patio/deck…so this will be very, very fun for our family!
The other thing we haven’t had in a while? An attached garage! You don’t realize what a difference it makes until you live without one for a while. It has finished walls and a floor, and it’s so nice to feel like it’s an extension of our house versus a grungy, gross, hot garage!
So there’s the first glimpse into our home for the next year! Now having lived here just over a week, we are truly loving the extra space and the little imperceptible differences that come with living in a real house (versus base housing which, in our experience, is really just an apartment pretending to be a house!). It’s not the fanciest house, that’s for sure! But after living in boring builder basic for quite a few years now, this house really is a treat!
We’re in a really unique situation this time around, being here only for a year…and I am anxious to hash out my ideas and set my own expectations for this house! I’m going to chat a bit more about my plans later this week. On Wednesday, I’ll be showing our one-week-in progress, and share my secret for getting completely unpacked and settled in a new space FAST! See you soon!