The Before’s

By Mark Manship

Ines and I consider ourselves pretty staunch followers of the DIY/HGTV network shows, especially “Love It or List It,” “Property Virgins,” Rehab Addict,” and our new favorite “Renovation Realities.” However, even armed with a steroid shot of creativity and knowledge that those shows provide, we’re still running into roadblocks. While I’d love to say we’re already finished with a few rooms, sitting back, drinking cold ones on our spacious patio, unfortunately we’re learning that renovation is a tug-of-war battle that you end up winning by sheer determination and a few fat boys on the back end, or losing and falling face first into a puddle of disaster.

Before we reveal any progress or completion, let’s take a first look at what we started with:


Front of the House

Inside the Garage

Inside the Garage

Entryway / Foyer (Looking from Front Door); access to guest bedroom, bathrooms, office, and family room

Formal Living Room (Unfortunately, we didn’t get to keep the piano, but…)

We worked that organ into the closing offer, cha-ching! Ines and our realtor were already doing their best Phantom of the Opera impressions when I came back in from taking some pictures.

Formal Living Room (Mmmm…delicious carpet)
Dining Room (We’re already trying to figure out how to remove the wall of mirrors)
Dining Room Window

Family Room (loving the vaulted ceilings and exposed beams)

Family Room looking into Kitchen

Foyer (Looking from Family Room)

Back of the House


More Backyard

View of Backyard/House from the Golf Course

Golf Course View from Backyard
Side of House / Yard

Patio/Pergola (and our storage shed)
Storage Shed
Storage Shed (Yeah…it needs some love)

Laundry Area (off Family Room)

Laundry Area/Eat-in (off Family Room)


Ines looking lovingly at her new gas appliances

Downstairs 1/2 Bathroom; a.k.a. the “Airplane Bathroom”

Office #1

Office #2

Guest Bathroom (Hello, wallpaper)

Guest Bathroom (We have more bars than 6th street in Austin)

Guest Bedroom

Guest Bedroom

Stairway off of Foyer; follow me!

Up we go!
Master Bedroom
Private Balcony
Private Balcony
Check out them vaulted ceilings and exposed beam, woo!


Master Bathroom (A green bidit…interesting…)

Master Bathroom

Utility/Sewing/Future-Nursery? Closet (Didn’t manage to snap a picture of the actual room); closet holds access to the attic

Side of the House from Driveway
The yard boasts a variety of very old, beautiful trees that create more than enough shade and character, plus they act as a natural privacy screen from the golf course.
We love the mediterranean-style roof and overall curb appeal; the running theme throughout the inside of the home, however, is “gloomy and dated.” There are 4 shades of pukish carpet, green-pea soup drapes, mustard patterened window shades, and a whole lot of dark, dark dark. We’re ready to bring some life and light to this worn-out wonder.
Let the tug-of-war begin!