Welcome to Foxcroft, a late 1920's bungalow set in University Heights, Iowa. I'm Mike, your host. I live here with my family.
A little about us:
We are the second family to live in our home. We owned the house for a year before beginning to restore it. We had the incredible opportunity in that time to get to know the daughter of the builder during her final year she lived here as our life tenant. Helen passed away in December of 2004 at age 93. She was 18 when she moved in with her widowed mother in September of 1928.
Helen and her mother, Bess, 1929.
We started work to make it our home in 2005. We have had the privilege of keeping much of the historical documents that came with the house: daily journals of both Bess and Helen, and amazing photo albums, including pictures of the house under construction:
And original interior photos
The big project we embarked upon was taking the entirely unfinished second floor...
2005 (before we started working on it)
...and putting in three bedrooms, a bathroom, laundry room and sitting room. We also added a gable to the rear of the house. Here is the interior of the new gable this morning.
We used salvage materials (the bookcases, door, picture rail and casing above) as well as the original blueprints to match trim, etc.
Perhaps the single best day of our renovation was here:
A Little Off the Top, Please
Lately my big projects have been outside. Bess and Helen by themselves built a cement fish pool in 1933.
More photos of their work are here: Digging the pool.
The pool was completely filled in some time in the 1960's. Over the past couple years We excavated and and now have it working again. We added a small waterfall:
Last summer we also built a pergola and patio of mostly salvaged materials. Here it is as used for our youngest daughter's birthday party in September:
A particularly interesting part was lifting up the very heavy cement columns. My partner in crime during this adventure is a fellow teacher and the lead builder of our upstairs. Our two families have been friends for over 25 years:
Here is a walkthrough of the entire pergola project:
- Jurassic Bungalow
- Rembrances of Salvages Past
- Going Vertical
- Hubris (or "The OTHER 90% of the Time)
- Why We Needed a Scarf in August
- In the Catbird Seat
We sincerely hope you've enjoyed your visit here, but sure to leave a comment or question if there's anything more you'd like to know. Feel free to poke around and snoop in the closets, etc.
If you wandered here not due to the online house tour, be sure to check out the other stops:
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Previous House on the Blog Tour: 1916 Portland Bungalow