Closing the chapter on Left-behind Ranch’

Hello friends! I hope you’re enjoying this gorgeous summer. We have been knocking projects out left and right, which feels very good … and is a great reminder that I need to update y’all with some pictures and information.

Let’s start with ‘Left-behind Ranch.’ If you recall, this was our flip house turned rental house turned back into flip house. It has been one of our most lucrative investment properties to date, which was unexpected, but certainly appreciated.

We sold it in late March after our “best tenant ever” moved out.

So let’s go way back to the beginning, shall we? I purchased this home from an online foreclosure auction site (yes, it was terrifying) for $51,000 back in summer 2017.

We put about $10,000 in it in renovations – mostly cosmetic, which took about four weeks. We rented it out to some fantastic tenants for about a year and half. Then we sold it for $99,000 this past March. Of course there were various maintenance issues that came up along the way, but overall it was a great project for us.

Here’s what it looked like when we bought it:

And here it is now:

It turned out so cute it was tough to sell lol. The paint colors throughout the home are as follows:

  • Living Room – SW Anew Gray
  • Kitchen/hallway – SW Accessible Beige (one of my favs), with an accent wall color in SW Warm Stone
  • Hall bathroom – SW Warm Stone
  • Master bedroom – SW Comfort Gray
  • Bedroom 2 – SW Accessible Beige
  • Bedroom 3 – SW Heron Plume
  • Master bath – We just left this primed white

So now it is on to the next project! We close this Friday on a 4-unit multiplex apartment building, which has three residential apartments and one commercial unit. We are excited about that and will be sure to keep you informed of the updates there.

In the meantime, we have so many cool projects we’ve done at our house that I need to share with you. We finished the staircase, finished an update on the master bedroom, and are in the process of updating the front of our home. Details coming soon with “After” photos.

What do you think of the ‘Left-behind Ranch?’

2019 Word of the Year

Hello friends! So obviously I am a little behind on designating my 2019 Word of the Year … but better late than never, right?

This year, my word is:


I realize this word seem a little, well, un-fun … a little stodgy … maybe it even conjures up images of your mom wagging her finger in your face.

But I need this word in my life this year.


I need to remind myself daily that:

  1. I am responsible for my attitude.
  2. I am responsible for my financial situation.
  3. I am responsible for my health.
  4. I am responsible for my happiness.
  5. I am responsible for my future.
  6. I am responsible for the care and well-being of my children and husband.
  7. I am responsible for the state of my home.

Now please don’t misunderstand. I am not the only one responsible for the care of my children and husband, and I’m not responsible for their actions. What I’m saying is that I play a leading role in shaping these things as well as their quality of life … and I think that’s really important, don’t you?

My goal this year is to use my word of the year anytime I’m feeling like a victim. I need to remind myself of this word when I feel like blaming someone else for any of the numbers mentioned above. It’s important. It’s a kick in the big-girl pants. And, in my life, it’s timely. If I want to have greater success, greater health, greater wealth, greater happiness etc., I must take responsibility and do the work that will get me there. Plain and simple. Not sexy, but #truthyall.

What’s your 2019 Word of the Year?

Thrifty stair railing redo

Hello friends!

Today I wanted to share with you a little project going on around our place. We’re redoing our stair railing!

The newel post, banister, spindles and railing leading upstairs in our home felt a little dated. Since this stair railing is one of the first things you see when you come through the front door of our home, we decided it would be a good idea to update it.

But we knew it was going to be a tricky project … and that has turned out to be true.

This is what the stair rail looked like originally. Meh.

About a year or so ago, I got this brilliant idea to paint it white, which turned out hideous and started to wear off where the handrail gets the most contact. I don’t have any pics of that disaster, so you’ll have to take my word for it.

After that, we really didn’t have much of a choice but to start over, so I scoured Pinterest for ideas that would work for our particular architecture and knee wall situation. I really like this one …


The next move was to figure out how to get it done inexpensively.

I purchased the wrought iron spindles online from Stair Supplies. They have a great selection.

I bought the newel post unfinished off the shelf at Lowe’s for about $100. I had an unfinished banister on hand from a pile of trim I bought at an auction for $2. So that was a huge score!

I stained all the unfinished pieces in a color called Moorish Teak. I also primed and painted the knee wall trim white to match our DIY wainscoting and other trim.

Of course, we had to demo the old railing.

Then big man and little man installed the new newel post.

Here’s where we are right now.

Our plan is to get this thing totally done by Thanksgiving, since the whole fam will be here. Wish us luck!

Have you started any projects in preparation for Thanksgiving?