West Reading Way

Time for a change after 22 years in our family home, but first here is a look back at our West Reading Way home before and after.

Twenty-two years ago my husband and I moved onto West Reading Way. These two ladies pictured above also lived there. Between us we raised 12 children on this lovely brick street shaded by tall oaks and cooled off by lake breezes. We alternated camping out on each other’s driveways in the afternoons letting the kids run out their energy before dinner. Those were sweet days that I remember fondly. Having friends to share them with made them even better. One friend moved off the street years ago relocating back to Boston. My other friend and I remained until this summer. We both moved within a week of each other. All of our kids have left home. They have gone on to begin their own lives. My friends and I have gone off to live in new houses.

My former house as it looked after 22 years and two renovations.

Diamond in the rough?

This was our house when we purchased it in 1999. The lot was loaded with oak trees and sat at the top of the only hill in Winter Park. You could see the lake from a few rooms and could reach it by walking a short distance. Kids could roam free as there was very little car traffic.

The original dining room.

The original dining room.

Despite the house being less than dreamy, it had a good floor plan and was well-constructed. Plaster walls and nice old windows were a plus.

Uninspiring foyer.

Uninspiring foyer.

Ball point pen marks indicate some of my first thoughts of renovation.

The view from the front door. Taming the jungle was a top priority.

Original driveway.

Original driveway.

A family friend who was also a talented landscape designer flew out to give us advice. He created a new central driveway. It was especially lovely once we created it out of old Chicago brick. Not easy to back out of, especially after cocktails, but it was such an improvement.

I do love working with a house in its original state. We were the second owners of this house so nothing had changed since it was built in 1961.

Terrazzo floors ran throughout the house.

Mexico, Morocco, and California served as inspiration for the renovation.

This kitchen was white, then blue, and then all white at the end. My husband loves a white kitchen. He tolerated the blue for a few years.

The dark red brick fireplace was covered with moroccan zellige. Bookcases were built under the windows to hold my collection of Astier de Villatte.

Here is the original powder bathroom.

We renovated it. (Picture not shown.) Then we renovated it again.

In December, I took out the original tub converting it to a shower instead.

Black zellige in a larger 8 x 8 size lined the shower with accents of green.

I wanted to experiment with antique tiles from Solar. The inset used their 19th c polychrome facade tiles.

Thinking we would only stay in this house for five years, I put in a slate floor. Never was crazy about it. So…out it went for this checkerboard zellige floor.

The quiet serene master bedroom.

The cement tile floors felt cool under foot. I loved the indigo blue color of them.

The windowless living room was livened up by a Moroccan tile wainscot.

I really really miss my bathtub.

We decided to sell our house this past Spring to take advantage of the crazy market. Translation: I wanted to renovate another house and I caught my husband in a weak moment. He is still recovering.  Happily a lovely Moroccan tile-loving couple bought it and are now living at the top of the hill looking out to the lake.

Good bye to my sweet house on West Reading Way.

Casa V can design a lovely home for you if you are creating a family or if you need a new one now that your family has grown up.