Saturday, January 17, 2015

Greece ~ Our first 28 days. . .

And so it began, our new chapter in Greece.  We’d caught that daydream we’d been chasing for nearly a year.  There we were – finally - in that Stone House on the Hill on a chilly December afternoon, ten days before Christmas – the purchase completed only hours before.

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From Agios Dimitrios village our house on the hill is the one on the right
Despite having visited it so many times during the ‘purchase dance’ we did with the sellers, it was still a bit odd walking into the house that first time as its owners. The dancing was over; reality hit. It was time to get to work on all those, ‘we could do. . .’ and ‘what that place needs is . . .’ challenges we’d given ourselves.

And we had only 28 days before our flight back to the States.

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This was the furnishing we bought with the house.
As part of the deal we’d purchased the place ‘furnished’. . .a house that had a hospital white interior (floor tile, walls and ceiling) and its main level crammed with well-worn, out-dated, over-sized furniture.

It’s downstairs was filled with boxes of belongings of the sellers – they would be stored with us the first week of ownership waiting for shipment to England.

Step One: Out with the old. (Not a lot of takers for the old stuff – but we did get rid of it!)





Step Two: Give some life to the sterile interior. (Painters arrived the first week!)

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Testing colors and prepping the walls
What happened during those 28 days . . .

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Then and now. . .
We used red for accent on the stairway to the bedrooms and on the fireplace. Softening the wall colors with a ‘meadow yellow’ or ‘biscotto’ color.

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Then and now. . .

We bought smaller furniture.

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Then and now. . .

And have opted for a country-style décor in this country home set in an olive grove.

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Then and now. . .
We paid tribute to the lemon trees in our garden, with bedding printed with lemons and our bed and bedding  colors, are blue, yellow and green.

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Then and now. . .
As soon as the boxes were moved out, we turned our attention to the downstairs, an area we call the guest suite, or The Garden Suite. Here we gave a nod to the plant, Lavender, by painting the sitting area a pale green and the bedroom lavender.

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Top photos from July and December, bottom photos 'after'. . .
Again, we warmed it up a bit with garden/country flavor:

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And we were at the end of our stay by the time we got the walls finished in the bedroom, but we'd made a start! There’s a lot more to do to decorate this place, but that will come in due time. We look forward to the scouting trips for accent furniture, wall décor and other adornments that are out there waiting to be found.

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Sorry for the length of this one, but so many of you have asked to see the interior that I had to do a bit of ‘show and tell’ today.  Next week, I’ll show you what we got accomplished in the garden when the weather permitted as well!  Thanks for being with us today!

Now that I am back in the land of internet, I am linking this week with:
Travel Photo Thursday – Budget Traveler’s Sandbox  
Travel Inspiration – Reflections En Route  
Mosaic Monday – Lavender Cottage Gardening

57 comments:

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    1. Yes, Dick, we did! And have had not a single moment of regret (we might moan a bit at the long plane ride, but the end result is well worth it!) Ever think of visiting Greece? If so, coordinate the trip and plan to come and visit us when we are there!

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  2. Joanne and Mike ScallonJanuary 17, 2015 at 9:39 AM

    Absolutely perfect! Colors, furnishings, everything. You have made your home in Greece really cozy already!

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    1. Thanks! It has a long ways to go, but we are pleased with the start we made!

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  3. This will have to be short but I have to say how fantastic this is!!! It is gorgeous and you really made choices that let your house LIVE. Bravo to you both and I can't wait to see what you will continue to do over time...especially as you accomplished SO much in 28 days!

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    1. Oh Heather, I think of the photos you've shared of your home and garden and know that we have a long ways to go. . .but it was fun to make a stab at a start!!

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  4. What a lovely look for your new stone house. I'm glad to see your Greek dreams becoming a reality.

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    1. Thanks Donna! Hopefully you two will stop by one day and try out that guestroom!

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  5. Lovely! I'll bet you are itching to return!

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    1. Your comment made me smile Betsy as we are still so Jetlagged In Seattle that the thought of any flight isn't appealing, but you are correct - doing this post made me want to be there - NOW!

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  6. Hello Jackie and Joel,
    Congratulations and I am so delighted to see your dream house is now secured. I love all the changes you have made thus far That is a lot of work in a short time. Now the adventures will begin and I can hardly wait to hear and see Greece through your words and images.
    Helenxx

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    1. Oh Helen, I know you understand both the excitement and the hesitancy that comes with owning a second home of your dreams. . .I am looking forward to reading more about your new adventure and seeing your home! Hugs to you, Jackie

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  7. Love what you've done so far making it Your Home. Looks like plenty of light to brighten your stays.

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    1. It will be fun to be in the house in 'full sun' spring and fall months, Gaelyn. We had some real stormy days while there this time which kept us from seeing its true beauty highlighted by sun beams. Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. Congratulations - it looks amazing - I am so happy for you. Could just be in this neck of the woods in July this year... if you're there too, how about that drink or frappe? All love from Sydney F x

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    1. Oh Francesca, I doubt if we will be there in July. We were there last July and the weather was so unbearably hot and the tourist hordes so large that we've set our sights on spring and fall. We will likely be there from mid-May to mid-June, though if you find yourself traveling earlier to the area. Hugs, Jackie

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  9. You did all that in 28 days? You should be on a TV show. Do you mind flying down to Texas and helping me with my house. It could really use some spiffying up, and I like your style. I can't wait to see the garden, and I really love the view of your house from far off. No wonder you fell in love with it.Glad you caught it.

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    1. Oh Michele, you are too kind. I should do a post of all the things not done. Or things discovered, that need to be addressed soon. . . Everyone could probably relate to that! Thanks much for stopping by today~

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  10. You've done a great job! It looks so lovely inside!! Bravo you two!

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    1. Thanks much for the kind words, Marlys! Look forward to having you two see this place in person one day.

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  11. Thanks for linking up to Weekend Travel Inspiration! You've done a wonderful job on the house... well done! I'm sure you'll have amazing memories in Greece in your new home!

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    1. Without a doubt there are amazing moments to be had in Margherita, and we recommend it highly; home or no home. Thanks so much for stopping by and taking time to comment.

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  12. I love it, it looks so warm and inviting; thanks for being a part of #wkendtravelinspiration

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    1. Paula, Thanks so much for the visit - I am glad to be back in internet land and able to link up again with this fun group of folks at #wkendtravelinspiration

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  13. Great work on interiors. It looks great.

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    1. Thanks so much for your visit, Rajesh. Always nice to see a comment from you!!

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  14. Congratulations! I am in expat in New Zealand and was surprised here too that walls are white. I miss feature walls. I love the stone walls, and your decor is really stunning,.

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    1. Hi Rhonda, For years we lived here in the Pacific Northwest in a new home that had 'contractor white' (or hospital white) walls and we finally got the courage a few years ago to make them come alive with color. We were both eager to see what color would do to The Stone House on the Hill and it is simply amazing. We had a British ex-pat stop by as the painters were at work and she exclaimed, "But. . .we don't do color here!" We smiled and replied, "We do!"

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  15. Wow! You've already accomplished so much in so little time, which definitely proves that you had a plan! Of course, I love the red, everywhere you've painted, as it is both warm and energetic, don't you think, and I truly believe it brings out all the earthiness of the stone. Your new sofa is very pretty, lovely colour, which also complements the cooler tones of the stone. Can't wait to see more of your beautiful stone home on the hill, as well as the work you managed to do in your gardens. Kudos to you kids!

    xoxo
    Poppy

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    1. Oh Poppy, I must tell you that as we were debating accent colors, your blog had a profound impact on our choices. Even after the accent walls were painted (and I have to admit they are a bit more red than intended as we did want to lean more towards the stone's earthy red tone) I would be reading your Christmas posts and showing Joel the photos, saying, "Next year maybe it will look more like Poppy's." You have inspired!!

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  16. great interior.nice to see the transformation of the place.Beautiful feature walls....

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    1. Hi Amila, Thank you for such lovely comments. Hope to see you back here next week when I'll take you on a tour of the garden!

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  17. Congrats, what a lovely home.. Your makeovers looks very pretty. I love the stone wall. Enjoy Greece and your new home!

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    1. Eileen, thanks for stopping by. I always am glad to see that you've visited and left a comment. Nice to be back and part of the linkup - with full internet connection.

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  18. I enjoyed seeing the before and after photos, you've added some colour and brought in items of personal interest. The house in Greece has been transformed into a home.
    Thank you for linking to Mosaic Monday Jackie.

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    1. Judith, Mosaic Monday is great for inspiration as we move forward with new gardens and new décor - not to mention getting ideas for my home in the US. Love being a part of this link up!

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  19. Oh Jackie, how very EXCITING for you taking possession of your new home!!!
    The changes you've made are fantastic!
    Now your heart will always be torn between home and Greece - what a choice!
    Shane

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    1. Oh Shane they do say home is where the heart is, don't they? We have been made to feel so welcome by our new neighbors on that hill, that the place in Greece has started to feel like home as well. . .but it is difficult wanting to be in two places at the same time.

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  20. Love your dream home. Wow - the colors pop! This post makes me yearn (just a little) for a home of our home again. Someday we'll settle down...

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    1. Our plans for this home, Anita, are to give us some roots in Europe so we can expand our vagabonding from a home-base there. It is sort of like settling in. . .but not really ;-)!!

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  21. Wow, talk about being productive, I love the new colors and the bedspreads, fantastic

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    1. Thanks Noel. We are heading to Hawaii on Friday - ready for a vacation!!

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  22. Beautiful dream come true and a stunning transformation....

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    1. Oh Donna, thank you for such lovely comments. See you back at Mosaic Monday soon. Hugs, Jackie

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  23. Congratulations what a great house!

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    1. Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment. Hope to see you here often.

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  24. Bravo! You accomplished so very much during your 28 days. Your Grecian home looks welcoming and warm. Love the bright accents of colour you've included.

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    1. Thanks, Lorrie. We did keep our nose to the grindstone, but as Joel pointed out one day, "These aren't chores - this is fun!" It is all in how you approach a new opportunity!!! Hope you'll be back regularly.

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  25. Wow, you guys rocked on the place! Way to go.

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  26. I'm SO excited for you! Wow, you guys worked so hard. :-) It must have been so fantastic to see all the old leave and finally be able to put your personal touch in place. :-) XO

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    1. A work in progress, Krista. Definitely a work in progress. . .but now with light at the end of the tunnel.

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  27. It looks wonderful. Congratulations! Thanks again for linking up with Weekend Travel Inspiration!

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    1. Corinne, I love linking up and will do so as internet connections allow!!! Thanks for hosting such a fun group.

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  28. You are living my fantasy! You did get a lot done and it looks great (especially love the red stairs). Can't wait to see the next installment!

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  29. How exciting to redo your house to your liking! It was fun to see the before and after photos.

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  30. What a beautiful home! I loved seeing your changes. The stairway looks great; I never would have thought to use red. :)

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So happy to see you took the time to comment. We read them all - and each is much appreciated. We hope you will be a regular here and comment often!

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