Insomnia isn’t always a bad thing. Sometimes that’s when inspiration strikes!

A month or so ago, I inexplicably woke up in the middle of the night and could not go back to sleep. And just as suddenly, I figured out how we could fix my biggest pet peeve with our house. Then I got so excited I really couldn’t sleep.

We’ve done a lot to this house since we moved in 7 years ago, including big improvements to the backyard. Unfortunately I never enjoy entertaining out there because of how you get to the backyard. You have to go through our teeny tiny laundry room, which is also where I keep my vacuum cleaner, cleaning supplies, etc., so it’s a junky-looking room by nature. Add to that a litter box, the laundry basket on the floor and my bras drip-drying from hangers at the back door, and it’s a less than desirable transition to the backyard.

Several months ago, Lee began a major DIY project to convert our sun porch into a playroom for Camille. Without his work on that playroom, my idea would never have been feasible.

Camille’s play space has been an area behind our couch in the living room. It worked just fine when she was a baby with a few things, but as she got older and bigger and her collections grew, the space became cramped and cluttered. And I’d never liked the fact that the main storage piece for all her stuff was in front of the big back window, making the room feel darker and smaller than it was.

The sun porch/playroom conversion has turned out better than I could have imagined and deserves a post of its own. We’re still waiting on delivery of new curtains, so I’ll post pictures of the new playroom soon.

But now that Camille’s play space was moving, I thought how nice it would be to take out the big back windows in our living room and replace them with french doors leading out onto a new deck.

The project wrapped up today and I couldn’t be more pleased. Reclaiming Camille’s play space meant we could switch the couches around and made it feel more open. Add to that the bright and lovely doors, and you have a very nice transition to the new deck and to the backyard. The house flows so much better now and I’m looking forward to having friends over for cocktails on the new party deck. And I can even leave my bras hanging in the laundry room – no one has to know.

The living room before the renovation, looking toward the backyard and the play area:

Living Room with Play AreaWith the play area moved in preparation for the renovation project:

With Play Area MovedPre-renovation: the backyard area we never used behind the living room windows:

Backyard Spot for the New DeckThe living room now, with the french doors in place and the couch positions switched:

New Living RoomPost-RenovationParty deck!

The Party DeckWelcome to the BackyardThe Doors

C’mon over!

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