INSTAGRAM HOMES: @cloisteredaway

Today’s #instagramhome is full of family and happiness. One of those homes so full of love and books (which for me is another synonym of love) that you would like to immediately move in.

Let me introduce you to the @cloisteredaway‘s home, a house where Bethany and her family lives and learn.

I love stories of renovations. Neglected houses full of cracks, dingy carpets and scrapped wallpaper that thanks to the hard work and love put on them, turn into jewels, like the Cinderella after the help of the fairy Godmother.

Bethany and her family of 4 kids bought this very old house 4 years ago and they have been working hard to turn it into an inviting home that doubles as school, as they do homeschooling.

This is exactly how I came across Bethany. Homeschooling is a type of education that has always interested me. The idea of letting the children learn their own paths and needs, to explore as they learn, is something that I find simply amazing. I am very happy with my kids’ school, with the way they learn and with the relations they build, but I do not dismiss the possibility of using it some time in the future. Bethany’s resources and tips are among the best I have found on the internet and most of them can be applied even if your kids go to a normal school.

Bethany converted their dining room into their home school. One of the walls is painted as a black board, so it can be used for adding tasks, learn about Napoleon life or draw the different layers of the Earth.

The big table is always full of books, coloured pencils and notebooks, but it can easily turned into a family dining room every time there is need for that.

It is one of my favorite rooms of the house, always full of life, mess, laughter and knowledge. It is open to the living room, giving a sensation of amplitude. I love how Bethany has organised reading nooks everywhere, so there is always an invited space for reading a book or dreaming with the stars.

The kitchen was ugly and dirty and not really prepared for modern times: with laminate floors, a drippy faucet, an ancient stove/oven that didn’t work properly and brown painted built-in cabinets. It was as bad as it sounds, click here if you do not believe it, but after removing 5 layers of laminate flooring, sanded the wooden floor that appear underneath and tearing apart some dividing walls, it turned into the spacey welcoming kitchen that they have today.

But as always, what I like the most is how they have converted the children’s room into a shared paradise. The boys room is simple, with bunked beds, a desk and plenty of space to play legos or imagine they are one of the Avengers.

For the girls, they took advantage of the high ceilings and built loft beds for them. Bethany explains here that one of her daughters prefers neat and tidy spaces and loves privacy while the other prefers playful fun and hates cleaning. The setting of this bedroom fits perfectly both personalities and I think that it is not only amazing and useful, but also tremendously beautiful. I am completely in love with the self-adhesive leafy wallpaper, aren’t you?

The room is so huge, that they even have a vintage iron bed that pairs as guest bed and the perfect place for cozy read-alouds.

The house had a pink bathroom and in this case the adjective “pink” was not exactly a synonym for girly and beautiful. See for yourself hereIt still amazes me how some partial retiling, the change of some door knobs, removing cabinet’s doors and loads of paint can change something so ugly into an stylish and inviting place.
I know that behind this “picture perfect” there are thousand of hours of work, sleepless nights and potentially some regrets, but it is difficult to recall the unloved home that this was when they moved there only 4 years ago.
The other gem of the house is the yard: with a built garden to plant vegetables and a long table for perfect Summer dinners, it is the perfect brooch for this beautiful and lively house.
If you like this house and the happy family in it, you have to follow the @cloisteredaway instagram account and blog. I am sure you are going to love it.
Thanks Bethany for letting us show your beautiful home. You are a source of inspiration and creativity.