The results of (probably) the most nerve-wracking decision to date

The front of the house – she is naked!

It’s been a while since I’ve addressed the outside of our abode, so here’s a little refresher in the form of a “before” photo:

Quick: it’s like the Hocus Focus from the Sunday Funnies. How many changes can you identify?

First, it’s probably pretty obvious that we ripped the pergola down. As hard as it is for me to admit this, it was actually not an easy decision at all. I had a very tough time imagining what the facade would look like with that bulk gone, and I feared the result would be something stark and sad. I don’t know about you, but I think the result is a total breath of fresh air.

Removing the pergola in concert with the new front door placement makes it much more apparent where one enters the home. One of my pet peeves back in the day was the front door was so hidden; once we address the walkway it will be even more evident. See the big, ugly, unfriendly, spiky plant in the “before” photo? Gone in the “after.” That thing could cut you if you rubbed up against it. Glad to have it eliminated. We did keep the birch tree, however. It’s a mighty pretty specimen.

Look! A little brick wall we never knew we had! For the sake of simplicity, we’ll stucco over it on both sides.

We also opted to take the window planter boxes down. Having to run the drip irrigation up there was a drill and I never thought this was a planter box-style house anyway. It’s like someone took a 1956 modern box and tried to turn it into Cape Cod or Mill Valley. I never thought it looked right. Our plan is to replace those with simple wood panels, painted the same color as the window trim (whatever that is!).

A minor point, but important nonetheless: the electrical conduit is now on the roof instead of the top of the front wall. If you squint the house kind of resembles Alfalfa from the Little Rascals:

If we had two, we’d look more like Little Sally Who:

Sadly, there is one constant in the “before” and “after photos:” the porta-potty. Sure, it’s covered up with lattice and all, but it’s still a toilet in our driveway.

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