Alina Sewing and Design

Portsmouth House Tour (FINALLY!)

I can’t believe we’ve been here for more than two months already! Seriously, that is so crazy to me, knowing we could possibly be moving again in 10 months. (We’ll find out in December if we’re staying or moving.)

We had our kitchen unpacked and put away only a couple of days after moving in, then got our bedroom and clothing organized. The furniture was placed where we wanted it within a week or so. But unpacking the decor, deciding where to place/hang it, deciding what to put away for now, deciding what to get rid of altogether…across three levels of house? That’s what’s taken me so long. Every couple of weeks, I would get fed up with another area of the house that I’d been previously ignoring and THAT’S how it would get unpacked and organized. Between those spurts, I was completely and utterly dragging my feet about it. (Plus, I’ve been hanging out with people a lot…and it’s way more fun to invest in new relationships [over tasty coffees and lunches, no doubt] than it is to trudge up and down the stairs with boxes and miscellaneous items that are yet homeless…while 7 months pregnant.)

But, here we are, “settled in”…well, at least enough that I feel like I can photograph the house to show you all. Nothing about this house is staged–this is essentially just a finally deep-cleaned and de-cluttered house. There are things that will move and change, but this is where we are for the time being. The hard part about moving every year or couple of years is that you can’t and shouldn’t buy things FOR the house. Have a really odd nook that needs to be filled and don’t have anything to fill it? Probably not wise to buy that “perfect” piece when you see it because that “perfect” piece might not fit the next house. So, you work with what you have. So, while this isn’t the “final” stage of this house, it probably won’t change too much for that very reason. Oh, and I will not be hanging any curtains in this house…because there is no point.

Let’s take a tour, shall we?

May I introduce you to ______________ (<—–that’s where our address would go if I were going to give it to you/hadn’t photoshopped it off of the house). 😉

House Tour - Outside

These are our front and back porches. *cue the angels*

They’re glorious and I can’t wait to spend more time on them when the weather cools down.

Moving to just inside the front door, the stairs are immediately to your front/right, and if you walk straight ahead, you’ll enter my studio…

House Tour - Entry and Studio

It’s taking some getting used to having all of my studio contents out in the open. It’s clean in these photos and it’s still too cluttered for my tastes. Previously, my studio was in the back of the house and had a door I could close. But what I lack in privacy, I gain all back in amazing natural light from the wall of windows/door (not pictured, but there’s a side door that opens up to the side part of the front porch). 🙂

If you keep moving, you’ll end up on the kitchen and back of the house.

House Tour - Kitchen

On the right side of the kitchen, there’s a short hallway leading to a bathroom and laundry room. (Aren’t the transoms above the doors INCREDIBLE?! They’re almost everywhere in the house and I seriously love them.)

House Tour - Back Hall Bathroom…(sorry I forgot to put the lid down) 😉
House Tour - Downstairs Bath Laundry room. It’s organized chaos. We don’t have a garage, outdoor storage, attic space, OR basement in this house, so a lot of the things that would end up in any of those places must be housed here. And this is after purging and organizing. Aye.House Tour - LaundryIf you go the other direction through the kitchen and past the side door (which leads out onto the back porch), you’ll be in the dining room. (We’re making a circle.)House Tour - Dining Room

Feeling lost? Here’s a photo taken from the other side of the dining room so you can see how it relates to the front of the house. (The dining room shares a wall with my studio.)House Tour - Front RoomsMoving into the living room…House Tour - Living Room The fireplaces aren’t functional in this house (BUMMER!), but because it’s angled, we had a really hard time figuring out how to arrange the furniture in here. I REALLY didn’t want to cover up the beautiful fireplace, but this ended up being the best set-up.

May I stop here and mention how much I love having an entry way/hall big enough for my pew?! It made me a little bit giddy every time I saw it when we first moved in. 🙂

House Tour - PewLet’s go upstairs to the second level, shall we?House Tour - First Stairs When you get upstairs, you’re in the hallway, which leads to our bedroom, the nursery, another bathroom and the third floor stairs.

House Tour - Upstairs Hall

I’ll pause here to say: I’ve never had a gallery wall before, but have always loved them. I’ve also never had a great wall for one, but this one was perfect! It’s pretty much a collage of photos taken by Jackie Cooper Photography and Sally Manlove Photography. Soon, we will have maternity photos by Maggie Cochran Photography to add to this! (And soonish, newborn photos…by yours truly.) 🙂

Standing at this end of the hallway, you’re looking at our bedroom door and a window that looks out onto our balcony. (Yes…I know, a BALCONY!) The third floor stairs are just around the corner on the left.

Standing at the other end of the hallway, you can see the nursery door to the left, a linen closet in the middle, and the bathroom on the right.House Tour - Upstairs Bath

The pocket door inside of the bathroom is what connects it to the nursery. (But you don’t get to see the nursery until the big reveal–sorry!) 😉

Moving past the nursery, let’s take a peek into the master bedroom/bathroom.
House Tour - Bedroom^^A different kind of summer reading this year. 🙂

OK, finally, we have the third floor, which is technically deemed the “guest suite.” It still lacks a fair amount of work before I would feel comfortable asking guests to stay there (like, I don’t know…maybe at least unwrapping the mattresses?). Right now, it’s a dumping ground for extra furniture, decor and clothing. But it IS a great space to have and will be really nice for guests to have a whole floor to themselves! And, it has a pretty cool bathroom. 😉House Tour - Third Floor

So that’s our house (minus the nursery)! Not really a work in progress and not really a finished deal. I think finding out in December if we are staying or going next summer will determine a lot (because if we’re staying, it will be for two and a half more years [three years total, including this current year]).

The Lord has TRULY blessed us with this beautiful house. It’s in a rougher neighborhood, but it’s a great mission field, too. (And I’ve never actually felt unsafe, by any means, even if the police are coming to arrest someone for domestic disputes almost weekly. And we have a security system, which doesn’t hurt!)

By far the nicest part is the location–as in, it’s 1.5 blocks from the hospital base gates, meaning essentially no commute for J after an already-long day! Oh, and if you keep going past the hospital gates another block, you’re standing there looking at this:House Tour - HarborThat is the bay area between Portsmouth and Norfolk. We often walk down here to restaurants in Old Towne Portsmouth or catch the ferry over to downtown Norfolk for festivals, restaurants, the mall, etc. Win-win-win!

I really do love it here. I miss the people we left in Wichita, but I’ve been so greatly blessed with friendships here (like, someone is doing something and inviting others along almost daily!) in the fellow intern wives/families. We’ve also found a great church and small group that has been a huge blessing!

Beautiful house in a great location for J (and that fit perfectly into our housing allowance!), incredible group of fellow wives who have quickly turned into friends, a great church that we were able to settle right into, and a wild baby (if you follow me on instagram, you know what I mean by wild baby) that is about to turn our lives upside down. Life is oh so very good.

Now…come visit us, friends/family!!! I promise I will spiff up the guest suite for you before you get here. And if you time it right, there will be a tiny baby for you to snuggle and you won’t even care if your mattress is unwrapped or not. 😀


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