Treetops Renovations: Part 2 [The Upstairs]

writing on subfloors is my favorite
Almost everyone in my immediate family has lived in the upstairs apartment behind Grammie during his/her adult life. Brandon and I lived here for a year while building our house in North Charleston. The location is perfect: close to family, beach, James Island lifestyle, downtown. The major drawback was space and lack of laundry facilities. I think we all would have lived here longer had we been able to install a washer and dryer in the garage.
August, watching his daddy hard at work
our carpet and vinyl removal team

August's Room:

never clean- always loved
August's treetop view
We anticipated the garage renovation taking up the majority of our time and budget. I knew the walls were painted upstairs- pretty colors (pale blue, rich chocolate, avocado green!)- but I planned to re-paint them white to bring in more light and clean up the place. The apartment smelled of cigarette smoke so we used Kilz to paint the ceiling, walls and trim. As Brandon will testify, painting ceilings is basically torture. I have to offer up a huge shoutout to my sister-in-law, Jackie, and our friends, Will and Kaitlin McAllister for helping Brandon paint the upstairs.

One of the major setbacks in the project was discovering the carpets had been used for a litter box for over a year so required removal and replacing. Carpet removal would have added a big chunk to our floor installation bill so Brandon decided to tackle it himself. Patrick, a good friend, and my brother Andrew came over one Saturday to pull up the nasty carpet. When they moved the final loads to the road for trash removal, you could smell the urine standing a clear 20 feet away.

Little Loy's Nursery Nook:
The Nook for Little Loy #2

a hot air balloon from Prague ℅ my lovely friend, Jenn

The original plan was to remove carpet in the living room and hallway. However, during removal, the guys discovered another issue- the toilet was leaking into the subfloors. Hurray for renovation! Fortunately, the leak was a simple fix but overall, the carpet/ toilet issues set us back 6-7 weeks. I am thankful we discovered the toilet issue when we did though. We have lovely, clean laminate floors now that are easy to clean and are no longer pink! (My grandmother went through an intense pink phase.)

Our Bedroom:

our bedroom
With new paint and new floors, the upstairs received a good deep clean and the porch was power washed.  It was ready for us to move in by our Thanksgiving deadline. While we completed the downstairs renovations, we used the upstairs as our sole living space. While August slept in the walk-in closet, Brandon and I used the rest of the space as intended: bedroom for bedroom, kitchen for kitchen, living room for living room. We lived like this for two months before we moved our bed out into the living room and made the bedroom into August's room. I enjoyed the intimacy the four months of small living required but sorely missed having a table to eat around. August ate in a booster seat on the floor while Brandon and I held our plates and sat on the loveseat.

view from our bed of reading/ nursing corner
After four months of tight living, we moved our kitchen, couch, television and computer downstairs and turned the upstairs into its ultimate purpose: our retreat. The screened-in porch truly is nestled in the treetops (thus, the name of the house). The beauty of this place is such a gift.

The Upstairs Porch:
our porch
a carnival in the treetops

For additional Treetops Renovations posts, click here.

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