June 22, 2016

How We Sold Our House in a Week (and the final house tour)!

How We Sold Our House in a Week (and the final house tour)!
Hey y'all!
I have great news! The morning after I wrote last week's post, we got an offer on our home and it is now under contract! Thank you for all of your well wishes and encouragement. I truly appreciate it so much! If you've been following along, you know that things have been a little crazy, with us buying our next fixer upper and selling our current house all in just a few short weeks.





















After posting this picture and announcing our house was for sale last week, I got a lot of questions.  Several of you asked why we would work so hard on this house and finally finish it, only to sell it a year later. Well, I never talked about any of our long term plans on the blog, simply because I didn't know how things would work out, and also because even though we always knew we would sell this home, we didn't have a strict timeline in mind. But, after Ava was born (and after we got through the 6 months of colic) and the house was finished, it just felt like the right time to move forward with our plan. 


A little backstory. 
When we first bought this house 6 years ago, we knew it wasn't our forever home. It was our first home. It was the only home we could afford at the time, unless we wanted something a lot smaller with no yard. It was straight from the 1970's and totally outdated, but we were able to purchase it for really cheap. And I mean REALLY cheap. It had so much potential and I knew that we could make it something special over time, really enjoy living in it for awhile, and then hopefully sell it for a profit. I'm not really sure why I thought that, as I had never done any sort of renovating before, and I knew nothing about real estate, but I'm glad I believed in us and this house.

There were honestly times over the past 6 years where I felt like I had bitten off more than I could chew, but we persevered through it and eventually finished what I had envisioned for this home all along.



So, earlier this year, Jesse and I began to feel like it was time to move on. We began actively looking for our next project, something with tons of potential that needed a lot of work. Basically, we were looking for another fixer upper in a different area of Knoxville, closer to my family. It took us almost 6 months of searching, but eventually we ended up finding one in our dream location (on 5 acres!!) and purchased it. As soon as we had our new house under contract, we listed our current house for sale. There was immediately a lot of interest in our home, and it was a crazy week with 2-3 showings a day, and by the end of the week, the house was under contract, for nearly double what we purchased it for 6 years ago. So, I know it seems like a crazy thing to do, to work so hard on your home only to sell it, but it just made sense for our family, both financially and emotionally, and we are really excited to move on to the next chapter of our story. 

Our next fixer upper needs a lot of work. I'll be doing things I've never done before, like kitchen and bathroom renovations, and I'm excited. It's probably going to be really ugly for awhile, and I can almost guarantee I'm going to screw things up on occasion, but I plan to take you guys along for the ride. Sometimes that's hard to do because people can be absolutely brutal when you share the ugly stuff, but screw the trolls, let's just enjoy the journey, ugly and all.  

Moving on with the story....I've never shared the exterior of our house before on the blog, mostly for privacy reasons, but we're moving soon, so feast your eyes on this terror.
I think this picture is from 2010, the day we moved in.


When we first bought the house back in 2010, it had been on the market for over a year and had sat in foreclosure for years prior to that. So, it probably hadn't been occupied for 3-5 years. And you could tell. We definitely had our work cut out for us.

 And here it is today, 2016, right before we listed it for sale a week ago. I'm pretty thrilled with how much better it looks.



We didn't do a lot to the exterior, but we did just enough to freshen it up and make it look a little more updated (without having to spend tons of money). We gave the exterior a fresh coat of paint (Benjamin Moore Chelsea Gray), painted the trim white, and painted the front door (Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze). We updated all of the lighting, stained the deck to match the house, and replaced the garage doors (The old garage doors didn't work for the first 4.5 years we lived here, and let me just tell you, best money I ever spent on this house...the luxury of being able to push a button and drive your car into your car-room!!!! I had no idea!!! Is this what the fancy people are doing?!?! Why did no one tell me?!!?). The landscaping was in really bad shape when we first moved in, but over time Jesse obsessed over our grass until it became a beautiful cushiony grass pillow. Not sure he really nailed it with the bushes, but whatever, he gets a million man points for spending so much time out in the hot sun, loving on our little yard.


So, that's the exterior. We've spent a lot of time in the yard with Ava recently, just crawling around in the grass and enjoying all of our hard work, and I will definitely miss spending time out here. I'm so excited to pass this beauty on to the next family. I hope they will enjoy it as much as we did.



And now,  I'll show you guys the pictures of the interior that we used for our house listing. The pictures turned out really well, and the photographer used a much wider lens than I have, so I think this makes for a great final house tour of this house. You'll probably get a better sense of what the house really looks like, much better than I was ever able to provide you with!


Dining room:















Entryway:


Kitchen:
I put out little bottles of sparkling water (I've never drank it in my life.), took all my bass fish magnets off the fridge (hehe), put a giant bowl of apples on the table, and opened a cookbook to a colorful page for the showings. I feel like the details make all the difference. 








Living room:
I got rid of most of my pink for the showings (and I won't be going back...it's a new day) and opted for more blues and greens around the house.








Guest bathroom:






Since we moved Ava's crib back into our bedroom long, long ago, we staged her nursery as a bedroom (with two air mattresses and some extra bedding I had on hand), so that people could see this room set up as a bedroom. It took me about an hour, but I really think it helped the house show a lot better than if I had just left all of her baby junk and toys laying on the ground (like it is in real life). I mean, if they opened the closet, they still got to see the complete baby gear debauchery, but hey, a girl can only do so much.






Office:



I love how well the photographer captured the master bedroom. You guys have probably seen this bedroom a hundred times on this blog, but I've never been able to capture it this accurately. I will miss this room so much. Our new master bedroom is about 1/3 of this size, but you can't have everything, girl.

 





I set up the little side room with a loveseat and styled it up with whatever I could find in the house, and I seriously got kinda mad at myself bc it turned into a cute, functional little space and I was like WHY did I never do this for the 6 years we lived here!? Such is life.








There's the side room. First time it's ever been photographed well on my blog. This was the original master bedroom for this house, but they built on that huge addition back in the 80's. I never did get around to replacing that fan.


A peek into Ava's 'room'. Turns out that little nook in our bedroom served a great purpose afterall!


Master bathroom:


Entryway down into the basement living room:



Basement living room:


Basement bathroom:


Basement bedroom:





And that, friends, is the final house tour of this house we've loved so much for the past 6 years. I'm pretty proud of our work here and I'm so thankful that I got to share it with all of y'all on this blog. It's been a really amazing part of my life.

In other news, Ava turns one tomorrow!!! We will be taking her to do her favorite activity, swimming, and I bought her a little cake to smash her hands around in. :)

Here are a couple pics from Father's day. Jesse wanted to spend the day at the lake, and so we did. 


We lasted about 30 minutes and ended up at a lakeside restaurant, but it was still an amazing day. Splashing around in the shallow end (and digging in the sand) with her dad by her side is Ava's favorite activity, and Jesse seems to enjoy it, too. :)


Thanks for being here, y'all. We'll be closing on our new house early next week and hopefully closing the sale on our current house in just a few weeks. So, wish us luck! Time to find some movers. 

P.S. Because I can only fit so much in one post, if you want to see the before pics of the house, go to this post.

'Til next time.






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53 comments:

  1. What a transformation! Enjoy this exciting time in your lives : ))

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  2. I can't wait for the next chapter in the adventure!!

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  3. Congratulations! I can't wait to see your next adventure.

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  4. Oh my word, such HUGE congrats to you guys! All the work you've done is paying off big time, and I looooove seeing what you've done to add curb appeal to your house. So pretty! You're my hero.

    I'm actually legit impressed with your own photography, because while these professional photos look amazing, your own photos were pretty darn close!

    We're in the same boat as you, we found a home and we're listing ours (so much stress), and it's a wild ride!

    Ignore any trolls - think of them as robots rather than real humans. Robots don't have hearts inside their tin chests. Don't let a piece of machinery get you down!

    Question about lighting in my house while trying to sell it: do you think the builder's grade, flush-mount, ceiling lights would detract buyers? (I'm referring to the flush mount lights that people compare to the female chest). <--tried to be delicate. Thoughts?

    Love your blog! I only found it while you were in the middle of your maternity leave, and then of course, I immediately read every single post, and then was all sad when I ran out. It was a wild ride. Happy for future updates! Congrats again!

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    1. Thanks, love! What a great comment...I really enjoyed it. It really is such a stressful process, the whole buying/selling thing.....I hope you guys are able to get through it swiftly! As far as the boob lights (I love your delicacy), I would leave it as is and work with what you have and just see how the showings go. If there isn't much interest, you can always make some adjustments. I truly think styling the rooms goes a really long way to getting it sold! (Oh, also, I think there is still a boob light or two back in my master bedroom! ha!) Thank you again for your comment. Loved it. xo

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    2. Thanks for the great advice! That was my first comment ever, so I wanted to make sure I was delicate enough for any automatic comment filters/screeners. We DID find a house we are in LOVE with, but found that there are unsolvable water problems in the walkout basement. Sigh. Back to the drawing board/search. Knowing it took you guys 6 months to find the right place is really giving me strength during our exhausting search. Looking forward to your updates! Congrats again! Living vicariously until we can move into our dream place!

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  5. So excited for you Virginia. I've followed you for a long time, since the beginning of your blog. Your amazing transformation of your 70's house was unbelievable. Even the pitfalls of your upstairs floors.

    I cried when your cat passed away. I was so excited for you and Jesse when you became pregnant with Ava. Then so sad when you were deathly ill while expecting.

    So I'm over the moon excited for you on this next chapter of your lives! Your new house will be a challenge but nothing you can't handle.

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  6. I just loved that post! I've been reading your blog for awhile now, but it was so fun to see the whole house, and all that you've done, knowing what it started as. My goodness, you made it beautiful. I like to think houses have personalities, and I'm sure your home was really happy you got her all pretty again. I know the new owners will be so pleased!

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  7. Congratulations, Ms. Virginia, that is wonderful news!

    I remember watching the posts as you transformed your master bedroom. I have always loved the white trim and how you brightened up the room. We live in a house in Colorado that was once a ranger station. All of our doors, windows and baseboards have wood trim; beautiful but more and more I long for a giant can of white paint!

    I agree with others...please ignore those trolls. Please also know that we who follow your blog look forward to seeing a post whenever life lets you have a few minutes. The fact that you share all the experiences you have with each project, including mistakes and changing your mind, really helps me to get up the nerve to tackle my own projects.

    Keep on keepin' on, Ms. Virginia.

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  8. So happy for you!!! I can't wait to see the new place! And I swear the next time I visit my best friend in Knoxville I'm sending you a note!

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  9. Love your blog! I'm so happy for you and your family and looking forward to following you on your next journey :-)

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  10. Congratulations!!! The exterior transformation is amazing. I didn't even realize you had a two car garage in the first picture. When I saw it in the current photo I had to go back to see if it was there or you added them. LOL. We are hopefully closing on our first house the end of next week. All depends if we get the all clear from the mortgage company by this Friday. Ughh Fingers crossed and good luck with your closings!

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  11. Woooah! What a transformation of the outside of your fixer upper! I started following your blog years ago when I bought our first condo that didn't show well and was a foreclosure too! Everything was original and from the 90's so not as bad as the 70's but still I learned how to paint the bathroom cabinets white thanks to you!! Happy birthday Ava!!! I can't wait to see your next place!! I have all the confidence in the world that you will make it beautiful too.

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  12. Congratulations, to sell in a week is fantastic! You guys have done such a fabulous job transforming this house, I'm not surprised it sold so quickly. Can't wait to see what your new house is like. And Happy Birthday to your little Ava, I can't believe she's one already!

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  13. Congratulations guys, on the new house and the amazing results with this one. The new owners are going to love it. Really looking forward to following the next stage of your journey, even the ugly bits. 😉

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  14. Congrats again, lady! We sold ours back in february and since I don't have our mad flair, we had to hire a stager to come in and tell us to move stuff around and how to add dramatic pops of color etc. Afterwards, I was like, why didn't we make our house like this BEFORE we left?!

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  15. Congrats on the new home! I can't wait to follow along on your next journey. Happy birthday to Ava!

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  16. Yay for doubling the value of the house! I can't wait to see what you do next. Congrats :)

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  17. Thank you for allowing us to be a part of your family. I can't wait to see what you create in your new home! Also, the exterior before and after looks like two completely different homes!!!

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  18. Absolutely stunning!! Seriously, the inside as well as the outside - what a difference! And almost double what you paid for it?! You SHOULD be proud - that is amazing. And in my dreams as my husband would 1) never let me buy a fixer upper and 2) is not a fixer upper himself, boo. So I'm going to live vicariously through your next DIY home adventure. That okay? ;-) Good luck and a huge congrats!

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  19. Way to go! Very exciting to see the dividends of your hard work over the years

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  20. Wow Virginia, that's all I can think to say about the transformation of your beautiful home. I've followed your blog for years and thought the inside was beautiful but what you have done with the outside left me speechless. Congrats on selling your home and also on finding your next fixer-upper, I can't wait to see everything you do as I know it will be fabulous. And happy birthday to little miss Ava, she is a ray of sunshine. You are closer to my daughters age (33) then mine (50) but I so enjoy your blog and everything you do. Just ignore the trolls who take the time to comment because they are not happy in their own lives, so they try to bring everyone else down. If you weren't fabulous you wouldn't have all the blog followers you do, so just ignore any negative comments. You have a picture perfect family and are very talented! Best of luck to you and Jesse, I can't wait to see what you do in the new house. You have definitely taken this house and made it a home!
    Hugs to you and Ava!

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  21. Wow! At double the price you paid, and with those exterior photos, I can see why. I am still obsessed with that natural pale wood color you ended up with for the floors. The new house sounds amazing and I can't wait to be along for the ride.

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  22. Such a beautiful job, Virginia!! So excited for you!!:-)

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  23. Congratulations on selling your home so quickly!! The final pictures turned out beautifully, and it's no wonder someone fell in love with it so fast. I can't wait to follow along on your journey as you turn your new fixer upper into your happily-ever-after!

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  24. Virginia, what a splendid transformation! Can't wait to see what you do with the new place!

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  25. Hey...
    First ever comment, although I've been reading your blog since you were part-way through your pregnancy.
    I stumbled on your blog while researching how to paint wood furniture and became mesmerised by the transformation of your various projects and of course your beautiful home.
    I love your taste and style. I would honestly give anything to be able to apply even a small percentage of it to my own home, and will be watching with avid interest all the way from the UK while you tackle your next fixer-upper.
    As for the trolls... anyone who doesn't flinch and laugh with sympathetic recognition when you point out a mistake needs to take a serious look at themselves. And will never experience the joy of reaching new heights through trial and error. So continue to be brave enough to share ALL your decisions so that we can learn alongside you. Please :-)
    Jen

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  26. Congratulations on the next big step! So excited to follow along with your upcoming projects. I never cease to ne amazed by the trolls online. Your family and all your projects are great, keep at it girl!

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  27. Beautiful updated home for some lucky family, can't wait to see the new one transform! Tfs ~ Jeri

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  28. I'm so excited for you and your family, and so happy you're back to blogging! Yours was the first blog I ever felt compelled to read (you are so relatable and so so funny!) and I'm so glad to see you in my feed again!

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  29. I've loved all of your posts and improvements to your house, I'm so looking forward to the next journey!!!!

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  30. Congrats!
    I hope we have the same luck as you- our house was listed just today! We're under contract on the house we want to buy, so the clock is ticking on the sale of our current home...Not stressful at all ;)
    Can't wait to see what you do with the new place!

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  31. I just found out your blog and love it. Thanks for sharing all those great ideas! Can't wait to see your new project.

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  32. You've done such an amazing job on your house, so I'm not surprised it has sold so quickly - congratulations! You have done so much in 6 years! We have had our house for over 5 years now and we are still working away at it and it is nowhere near as big as yours! We are hoping to move too sometime in the near future, so we need to get a shift on lol

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  33. Congratulations! Where did you get the beautiful pink floral picture in the nursery-turned-bedroom?

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  34. I've been following your blog for awhile and the transformation is stunning and impressive. I can't wait to see what you do with your new place!! Congratulations!

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  35. Congratulations on your new house and the next chapter in your lives! I've so enjoyed following your awesome renovation work on this house. I'm going to miss it!! It's such a cool house and layout and it looks fantastic now. But looking forward to seeing what you do on the new one!

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  36. Congrats on the move and Ava's first birthday! I am not surprised your house sold in a week! It is beautiful and I would love to live in it. I cannot wait to see you new house and the renovations you do to it. You were one of the first blogs I started reading when we bought our fixer upper and have inspired me so much! Best wishes to you!

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  37. I have followed your blog from the beginning of your renovation and learned so much from you and Jesse! I love how if something turned out that you really didn't like, you were bold enough to say so and change it. That was huge for me. We spent 5 YEARS looking for our perfect fix-er-upper, and found it, bought it, and now our house is on the market with an offer as of yesterday. It had been a rental for a few years, so it was shown empty. We live on an island, so there aren't many homes to offer, but it took a month to get the first (serious) offer. We are so excited to start our new chapter too! Best wishes for your new home, and I will be waiting for each new blog entry! (also, ignore the trolls. They ARE trolls, afterall!)

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  38. I've been reading your blog for quite some time and enjoyed every minute of your journey with DIY but have never commented - I do a lot of DIY myself at home. You have done an amazing job on the house, so much work went into it! Congratulations and I can't wait to be able to see whatever you choose to share with us on the new home!

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  39. You did a beautiful job! I am just wowed. Have you ever thought about being an interior decorator?!

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  40. Congratulations, Virginia! I am so excited to follow along with your family as you enter your next chapter. Quick question -- who did you use to replace your garage doors? We are local to you and I'm trying to find someone to replace our heavy, broken 80s doors. I want to park in my car room! ;)

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  41. House looks amazing. I can see why it sold so fast. I think I started following along back when the master bedroom got a facelift every week or two... ;) You've come a long way! What an exciting journey...all because you started a little blog. I can't wait to see the new house and follow along as you transform it. ~~Carrie

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    1. Carrie! You are my favorite kind of reader...the kind that remembers when my master bedroom was all I had to work with. Ha! Oddly enough, those were such good days. I'm thinking you understand. A time when my only resource was creativity. So glad you were along for the ride. xo

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  42. You should be extremely proud of yourselves! So much to aspire to. You are the reason I feel we can buy an older outdated house and not only survive, but thrive. I am always saying, what would Virginia do! Way to go! Can't wait to see what new projects are in store. :-)

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  43. HIllary! Your comment truly made me stop everything I was doing and reply. Thank you for making me feel like I'm made some sort of small contribution to someone somewhere....it's so hard for me to feel that sometimes. And yes, you really can do it. You will surely botch things at times (like I did), but it's survivable. :)
    xo,
    V

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  44. aww congrats on selling your house! i can't wait to follow along with the new house. i'm sorry you've had to deal with trolls, what horrible boring people. you should be super proud of yourselves, and never stop blogging because i love your style and posts and never want you to stop :) you make me think we could buy a fixer upper and do it as well, but i don't know about that haha. happy belated birthday to Ava!

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  45. It was so quiet in the last year, you had Ava, and who wouldn't want to spend time with her?!! But then I suddenly spotted the words 6 months and colic....... My dear, no wonder you were exhausted! Anyway, So glad to see the picture of the outside before and after, as we never did know what it looked like. Brilliant transformation! Well done the pair of you. Now I am looking forward to the new story - I will definitely be along for the ride.
    Love from across the pond!

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  46. Your home is beautiful. You all did a GREAT job on updating it. Can't wait to follow along on the new house (projects). I know it, too, will end up being fabulous. Congratulations on the quick sale!!

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  47. I think it's awesome that your home sold quickly and you already had one in the works. My husband and I knew our first home was not our forever home and while we didn't do a ton of work to it we did enough to get back what we paid for it. You guys did a ton of work and should be proud that you're handing it over in much better shape than you got it in. Don't ever apologize for moving on. That's part of the fun of houses and DIY and growing a family. Can't wait to see your new home and all the fun changes you make as you grow into it!

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  48. Virginia, you are truly an inspiration- my husband and I are always talking about renovating...we do some DIY, but your projects are gorgeous and far more than we do. I am looking forward to your new adventure and hope to get more inspiration from your work!

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  49. Quick question when you say you painted the exterior of your house was that a DIY? or did you hire out for it? If DIY I would love to hear more about it was it worth it?

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  50. Your bedroom finally had a finished moment! I loved watching all the changes you went through in there, and all the pics you had with you painting furniture and stuff! Honestly Virginia, I'm not surprised AT ALL that your house sold quickly! You loved on it, and the pictures showed that. Those made your place look absolutely LUSCIOUS! I know you're going to do beautiful things in your next home, and I for one, can't wait to see what you do with it!

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