What was your life like when you were house hunting?
We were young, VERY YOUNG wanting to buy an investment property in this new neighborhood called Fishtown. There were only two bars at the time, Johnny Brenda’s and Memphis Tap Room and that was about it. But everyone was saying ‘in 10 years it’s going to be amazing’. And here we are 10 years later. We have the perfect home in the perfect location. Back to our house hunting experience, we looked at over 50 homes and we walked into this one and never wanted to leave. We simply felt connected to the house.
What was the first thing that drew you to your house?
All the original details, charm and the light flooding the house from the skylight.
What was the best improvement you made to your home and what inspired you to make the change?
We opened up the wall between the kitchen and the dining room and rebuilt the kitchen. It turned our great home to an amazing home. We did it because we were pregnant with our first little guy and we wanted a more open concept in the house so we could keep a close eye on the baby even when I’m not in the same room. We kept the wall between the living room and dining room because as much as we like open concepts, we love a cozy space too. Keeping one wall and eliminating the other felt balanced. The kitchen was designed to be clean, classic and look like it has always been in the house, and be as functional as positive.
We gutted the upstairs bathroom to make a more functional bathroom and since it’s not huge we focused on functionality.
We also redid the floors throughout the entire house. And we did this purely because of our obsession with wide plank floors with lots of knots and grain lines. It makes the house feel larger and soaks in all the natural light. We just love them so much. They also hide a lot if we don’t have time to clean before we have guests... shhhhhhh don’t tell.
Lastly, we gutted the lot behind the home and built a beautiful back yard that is easy to maintain. With lovely trees, a fire pit and a custom fence we built from scratch. The concrete walls supporting the fence were formed with the cedar plank material that is now the fence, so the concrete has a cool texture and less waste.
Describe a Sunday morning in your house and neighborhood?
Ok I love this question. We have two versions of Sunday mornings at our house and I love them both equally.
A- Roll out of bed, turn on some great tunes via Alexa. My husband is making breakfast while we are sitting in the living room singing, dancing and being silly (myself and my two sons). Then gobbling our breakfast under the sun filled skylight. Then going in the back yard and getting into fun art projects or hanging on the front porch with all my amazing neighbors.
B- Roll out of bed, throw on a lazy outfit and immediately walk out the door and walk to brunch. My oldest son is obsessed with his scooter so he’s scooting next to us as we stroll. Brunch is a very important thing in our family that we take seriously and luckily we live within walking distance to so many spots we change it up every weekend. Over Easy Breakfast Club, Suraya, Kensington Quarters, Martha, Memphis Taproom and so many more options we have in rotation. Then we hit up Riverwards Produce for some groceries for the week and head to the Hackett playground where we almost always run into friends.
What is your favorite room in the house and why?
Our bedroom! When all the trees are green and in bloom it feels like a tree houses. All you see is green and hear chirping birds. It’s THE best. If feels like you’re not in the city at all.
What is your favorite hidden detail in the home?
Not very hidden but the staircase and the glass light on the banister. It’s so lovely and homes now a days just don’t have THAT level of detail.
What about this home makes your life easier?
The porch! We never knew before we owned this home how wonderful having a porch is. You can open your door without getting immediately rained on. The kiddos can play on it while we are packing up the car. You can step outside in your slippers and look to see if you locked your car. And most importantly you can have a drink after the kids go to bed and chat up all the neighbors and friends that happen to walk by.
How has your life changed since you moved in?
This question will make me cry. So many huge life changes in the 10 years we have lived here. We got engaged, married, had two baby’s 2 years apart. We demo’ed and rebuilt rooms (while I was pregnant!). My husband and I learned all the life lessons you do when you get married and have kids. We formed a forever bond between the two of us and then started our family that I am thankful for everyday. And all in this home. It’s going to be very difficult for me to leave.
Why did you choose to work with the Philly Home Girls?
Easy, Jeanne Whipple. She knows what she is doing and is cool, calm and collected through the process. She has super creative and knowledgeable ways to find solutions. And most importantly, I trust her and her team undoubtedly.
How has your experience been so far?
That’s like asking ‘how’s that cake’ - it’s great. It’s always great. There is no bad cake