My Dream Home

Seven years ago, my husband and I realized that we needed a bigger house. Ours was a tiny 1930's era home, with three tiny bedrooms. We had 4 children then. Our home had beautiful wood moldings, and lots (33) of windows! It was a fixer upper, and we poured our love into that house.

When we decided to move, I started dreaming of old Pennsylvania farm houses, we knew we would like to have an acre of land at least. My husband did not want another "old" house, they were too much work! He wanted to buy something less than 20 years old and move in ready.

So we started to look for houses with an acre of land. In our price range we soon realized that this was going to be a difficult task. One day by "chance" we saw a realty sign at the corner of a road we would never have gone down, and found our house. It was for sale by owner (we never did find the realtor's house), and it was, ummm - "used."

It was a rancher, less than 20 years old (my husbands desire). The sign said call or knock. So we did. It was a mess- ruined carpets, holes in walls, holes in doors....sigh. We had a friend, who had been in real estate and construction for many years, come have a look. He said it was in good shape foundationally. And since we both have an ability to SEE what COULD be - we decided to go for it. It really was an incredible deal, IF you are a visionary and in our case able to do most of the work yourself! The property turned out to be a total of 4 acres and to have a creek on it. I do however tease my dear husband on occasion about buying a house "move in ready!"

Of course it always takes longer than you think, buy by the time we moved in we had new floors, new kitchen cabinets (the old ones turned out to be rotted), the walls painted, central air/heat put in.

I have decided that I enjoy the process of making a home my own. I just don't always like the fact that we have to wait to do things, since we try to stay away from credit purchases. We still have a few rooms that need baseboard trim and window trim. Oh, and the siding needs to be replaced in the worst way and the shutters painted.

I love my house. It WORKS for us, and since we did away with neutral colors and went more with bold color it is really us! It is warm and inviting, a haven for our family.

I have learned alot in the process of making this house a home. The biggest one is that a home is any place where you are with your family. You can make a home anywhere. I am quite content with my home. God has allowed us to use it to show hospitality many, many times. Even when we had no trim up in the house at all. You know what? No one cared, maybe because I didn't care.

I want to show you some before, during and after photos. I had to take pictures of the before pictures so the quality won't be great but you will be able to see what we have been working on since October 2001.

This is the way the front of the house looked in October 2001. That window air conditioner was the only a/c in the whole house!

This is how it looked this morning when I took the photo.

Our pressure washer got the mildew off the house and we made a flower bed in the front of this portion of the house.

Aren't the flowers pretty?
The pool was a mess and as my dad and mom have one, we got rid of this one.

We have a horse "pasture" temporarily. Lindsay gives riding lessons here and the horses sometimes just graze here.

This is a pretty area - Tim cleared all of this over the last several years.

This is inside the living room kitchen area. We took the island out because there was no room for our family dining table. The door has been replaced twice! They had a wall propane heater that now resides in my dad's garage.

This is how the living room looks today, this morning in fact. Look at Emily cleaning the wall by the trash can.

It was quite a process to renovate - we had to drywall, tear out kitchen cabinets, pull up flooring.

I love the way it looks now - warm, welcoming and inviting.

This is how it looked in progress - we had a neutral color on the walls until last year.
We also replaced that terrible door situation with a new slider.

This is the hallway color. Tim made me this cute calendar holder to match our door and window trim.

This was Nate's room before we moved in - awful.

Here it is when we first moved in.

Here it is today, an office/sewing room.

Here is the main bathroom - they had wallpaper originally on this wall, which had pealed off at some point. We had to peal backer paper off the wall before we could paint.

Here is the bathroom today!

This was the room that we had for the girls when we first moved in. There were thousands of holes in the walls.

Here it is today - we still do plan to get closet doors, but for now it is workable.

This was how it looked when our girls lived in the room.
Here it is now as the second "master bedroom".

It is hard to see but this is Kyle's room before we moved in. It was Sarah's room, and then Emily and Sarah's then just a room with the girls dressers in it, when they all wanted to be together in the other room.

Now it is Kyle's room.

Tim made that bookcase! And did all the trim work in the house.

The master bedroom was five years old when we bought the house. We didn't know there was a huge hole in the wall, as their bed hid it.

Here is that same window area now.

Here is what it looked like when Tim and I had this room -cool sage green walls, and lots of white.

All four girls still share a room. The little girls beds are between the big girls beds.

They love their pretty bright room!

The floor was ruined in this corner - a leak from the bathtub that they never fixed!

Today it is a bright desk area for several girls.

This is a photo of the way the bathroom in the master bedroom looked. Shudder....

Here it is today - the color is Lemongrass and we have a pretty purple shower curtain in there.

Here is the main part of the bathroom. This color is Mango Tango.

This home has become my dream home. If we had to move, I would shed some tears, but I know that we could make a home where ever God leads.


  1. Your home is beautiful! Thanks so much for the tour-I really enjoyed it.

    We seem to live with constant reconstruction projects, too. It looks like you have made a lot of progress in seven years! We have lived in the blue barn (which wasn't a barn at all when we bought it) for 16 years and still have lots and lots to do. Money and time, time and money...

    Thanks for sharing your home with us. I particularly love your flower bed and calendar frame-and think the picket fence towel rack is ingenious!

  2. oh wow this is amazing what you did with your house and i love the girls room color. while we are there dad is going to paint my room i chose green and my bedspread is green i cant wait for it to be finished i will have to send you pictures when its done. well i love the colors and amazing what you did with the house. i cant wait to get there.


  3. our home is lovely and inviting! Thanks so much for the tour. You are blessed, like me, to have such a handy hubby!

  4. oh we are blessed women to have men that work so hard for us..and them husband likes and trusts my taste so it is fun..and I can see the same in your is beautiful, lovely, inviting, love the what time did you want us to come over for dinner ?????

  5. You know what Auntie Dee? My parents home was just the same way! You couldnt even see the front of the house. It was a definite fixer upper, but now its beautiful and warm inside and it means so much more to be able to do things yourself. It took a while to make our own, because my parents could barely afford to buy it at the time, but now over many many years I love it. Those are the best homes, homes that you put hard work and love into. You are right, home is always where your family is no matter how big or small, or how plain or fancy. I am glad to see you in your dream home and content as God would want. Your home looks great, you have done a lot of work and its fabulous!!

    I have to say that even though Ryan and I are in a spacious apt (not an actual house), we love our place and call it home because God blessed us with it and we are content too, and just the fact that this is where we live together in love!

  6. What a beautiful transformation! A lovely home is a true treasure! Thanks for sharing, and enjoy!



  7. Thanks for the tour, You have a beautiful home!!!
    Ruth, PA

  8. Creekside Cottage has been shaping up very nicely over the years. There is always a project...or two in the works.

    It is so fun to see the things in your mind's eye come to life.

    Great job!

    Becky K.

  9. You've done a beautiful job on your home!!! Congrats!

    I wanted to let you know that I've "Tagged" you for 5 Things I Love Most...check my blog post today for details. Have fun!


  10. Your home is beautiful, MrsRabe. You have a gift in seeing beyond the initial picture. :o)

  11. Hello! I followed some links that brought me here and couldn't resist looking around a bit:) My gracious, what a lovely job you've done with your home.. thanks so much for sharing all of the pictures. It was great fun seeing all of the transformations!

  12. Thank you Persuaded.

    I have been poking around your blog, too, due to the articles from LAF!

    I certainly appreciate your heart for the Lord and raising your children.

    I hope you come back for a visit really soon!


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