We recently bought a one-story house in Everett. The house was built in 1974. I did not care for the seventies decor back in the seventies and this one still retained many things from the seventies. One was the acoustic ceilings [sometimes referred to as "popcorn" or "cottage cheese" ceilings] and that was the first to go.

We literally gutted the house, removing the popcorn ceilings, the "pebbled" linoleum and the carpeting, some of which was the old shag carpeting popular then. We replaced most of the flooring with Pergo in dark antique Cherry. We had the family room and the three bedrooms carpeted with a gray carpet.

The woodwork, trim and doors were dark brown. We painted the woodwork and trim white and replaced the old brown hollow-core doors with white six-panel doors. White wainscoting was put in the family room, living room, dining room, hallway, master and second bedrooms as well as in the master bath. The majority of the work was done by our daughter, son-in-law and me.

The kitchen cabinets were patched with wood putty and painted white. The beige appliances were replaced with new white appliances and a new black countertop was put in.

The exterior of the house was a mess, too. There was no grass in the front yard ~ just weeds and a huge juniper bush flat-dab in the middle of the front yard. I do not like juniper bushes, so the first thing was to remove it, add top soil and replant the front lawn.

The house was a medium blue with a blue roof. Ted does not like blue houses plus the house cater-cornered from us is the same color blue. With a blue roof, our color choices were limited. Since the roof is fairly new and in excellent condition, we could not justify putting on a new one. We went with a pearl gray with white trim and red accents [the gray tones down the blue in the roof, making it look more gray]. I bought some shutters for the front windows and painted them red. It really spruced up the house. We also replaced the aging garage door that was splitting in places and just recently had the old aluminum slide-by windows replaced with new double-hung, insulated windows.

Quick comparison between the house when we bought it and the changes we made:
From this:
To this:
We had the old slide-by windows [shown above left and below] replaced with new double-hung windows [in the picture above right and the second picture below]. The first picture below was taken in the winter of 2005. The second picture, showing the new double-hung windows and red shutters was taken in January 2006.
Below is a closeup showing the new windows and shutters. In the spring, I will rehang the flower boxes that had to be removed since the new windows are a foot longer than the old slide-by windows.
The view from the third bedroom [the two windows nearest the door in the picture above] was bleak as it looked out onto a weedy lawn and huge juniper. Also, the room was painted pastel green with lavender and pink curtains. Obviously, these are the old slide-by windows. Now the view is much better. You can see the plants in the window boxes and the new lawn. The old curtains are gone, too. This room is now my computer room. This was taken before the old slide-by windows were replaced with double-hung windows. You can see the plants in the window boxes which will be rehung under the new windows in the spring.
In the backyard is a utility shed. This picture shows the shed in its original blue [seen from the patio] before the house and sheds were painted gray. Here is a close-up picture of the shed after it was painted pearl gray, the shutters painted red and a flower box and planter added.
Below is the original small, enclosed patio [picture above was the view from the house] that made the family room rather dark. With tall fences on both sides, it was really useless, not to mention a bit claustrophobic, plus there were two steps down to the patio which meant Ted could not use it at all.
We recently had the north fence around the patio removed and a large deck added. [I apologize for the sunlight reflections.] The new deck lets in a lot of light and Ted can now go out in his wheelchair and enjoy the outdoors when the weather is nice.

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