Now that you know the story of Bachelorette Pad Flip #3, you know about my sweet Mac too. Even now in my regular conversation, I call this house Mac’s House. Grandma and Grandpa purchased this ranch house in 1964. It has 3 bedrooms, 1.5 bathrooms, 1 car garage, storage shed, and a sunroom.
Throughout the years, Mac had some minor improvements done here and there on the property. New roof after a storm, siding added, tiled bathroom, etc. But, for the most part, the house was in its original 1964 condition.
This old gas lamp post is original to the house. It’s rusty. It’s faded. The panels are broken. It doesn’t work. The letters are missing. But it’s one of my most favorite features. This had the family name on it. As a labor of love, I plan to restore this lamp post to its original status.
The corner lot is spacious and unfenced. As a child, I spent many days in that sunroom playing tea-party or who knows what. Unfortunately, due to roof leaks and non-use over the years, it’s in pretty rough shape. It is going to take a lot of TLC to revive that addition.
The lot at Mac’s is full of shrubs and trees, and while those can be assets, they really seem to dwarf the house. Some of the trees have died over the years. The “Christmas tree” that used to be planted next to the front porch died several years ago. There used to be a blooming tree in the corner of the lot, and sweet, compassionate Mac would place skillets and pans of water beneath it for the birds. I think I might just leave a skillet of water in that corner to honor Mac.
Sweet Mac was a cat lady. That must be where I get it from. During the last 10 years or so of Mac’s life, many cats found shelter and safety in Mac’s sunroom. I can vividly see Mac standing on that step waiting on the cats.
Quite possibly the most iconic “Mac room” is the kitchen. Those cabinets are saturated with grease from years of cooking. That stove has cooked hundreds of meals, fried pies, peanut brittle, and creamy gravy. I’ve sat at that counter and watched Mac putter around while making dinner. Mac’s domain was that kitchen, and I can vividly see her standing there with a cast-iron skillet on every burner.
How do you modernize a house and preserve all that is Mac and Grandpa? It’s a unique challenge I have. I want to “flip” the house, but I want Mac and Grandpa to be ever-present in this process. On the day I list this property, I want Mac’s presence everywhere. I want to honor my Grandpa with small little tributes that only he would get.
When you entered Mac’s house, you could bet she would be in one of two places: the kitchen or her pink chair by the front door. You would have to walk through the living room and around the long divider wall to see into the kitchen. You might find Mac peeling apples working up an apple pie…or you might find her in her pink chair piecing a quilt.
The era of 1964 brought the trend of colored tile bathrooms. Mac’s has a beautiful jade green. I adore it. As I contemplated purchasing Mac’s house, I was bothered by the idea that a new owner would hate that retro tile, and they would destroy it. I remember taking countless baths as a child in that tub staring at the jade green tile. Those jade green tiles are iconic to my childhood at Mac’s; they have to be preserved.
This photo was taken as Mac left the bathroom. Knowing her, she bought that cute rug at a yard sale. She accented her bathroom with little pink tidbits, left a Christmas towel hanging over the toilet year-round, and had her soaps and lotions lined on the counter. Everything about this photo is so precious to me.
Mac’s room was the largest of the three bedrooms, although no master bath is attached. Her furnishings were minimal, which was so Mac. The original oak hardwoods took a beating over the decades, but what an asset to have original wood floors in a house. One of my earliest memories in this house was my crib in that far corner of the room. I remember waking up from a nap and staring at a piece of art work hanging on the wall…and now I own this house.
As children, the grandkids had nicknames for each room. Mac’s room was obviously the room where she slept. Then there was Grandpa’s room. Since he passed away when I was young, I’ll be honest, I don’t know how it got its nickname. It was just always Grandpa’s room. I’m sure there was a story behind it. Grandpa’s room was the only room that had carpet that was obviously added at some point. It was also the kids’ room. Mac had a little TV she kept in that room and let us watch whatever we wanted, even shows our parents wouldn’t let us watch! As a child, Mac picked us up from school on a regular basis. She would bring us back to her house, and we would hang out in Grandpa’s room eating Velveeta and carrots.
The 1/2 bathroom is actually a laundry room combo immediately off of the kitchen area. The walls have never been painted. The retro countertops are original. The vinyl flooring, however, was added later at some point.
Mac’s house is dated, for sure. But there are so many elements of Mac. The grease. The stains. The cat fur. There’s a fine line between preserving Mac and Grandpa and just leaving it dated. I’m tackling a unique project with this flip: accenting the retro vibe of this house that appealed to Mac and Grandpa when they bought the house.
In 1964 the Macs purchased this property. In 2015 the house remains with the Mac family. I couldn’t be happier.