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At Home with the Alexanders
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Who: Jim and Paige Alexander; children Zack, 17, and Alana, 16; family dogs Buster, Axel and Cindy

The home: Ranch

Year built: 1981

The basics: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, just under 2,500 square feet on a 1.72 acre lot

Amenities: Large sun room, fireplace, family room, dining room

Jim's favorite room: "The kitchen because I have a lot of blood, sweat and tears in there. We tore the kitchen out completely, down to the studs. I relocated plumbing (sink) and appliances, changed the window and installed the cabinets myself, then tiled the backsplash and floors."

Paige's favorite room: "I like several rooms for different reasons. The kitchen because Jim spent so much time on it; the family room for its high ceiling, rock fireplace and rustic feel; the sun room and front porch for their pickled pine ceilings."

Zack's favorite room: "My room because I can do my own thing without being bothered."

Alana's favorite room: "My bedroom because I have been able to decorate it myself with paint and furniture."

Why this home: "We chose to move to this area of Newton County mainly to be in a particular school district. Deerfield Subdivision was at the top of our list due to its established reputation, amenities and large lots," Paige said.

Major renovation projects: "The kitchen was a major renovation project. Jim tore out the entire contents: island, appliances, cabinets and sheetrock. Plumbing had to be re-routed to relocate the sink; a window had to be taken out and replaced with a different sized one. It was a ton of work. He did every bit of it by himself, except for the solid surface countertop. We did have that installed. In the middle of the renovation, Jim suffered a heart attack. That set us back a few weeks, but he recovered and was able to complete the job himself. We are all pleased with the final result," Paige said.

To-do list: "Well, due to the age of our house, many items need improving. The next project we would like to tackle is the master bath. It needs upgrading with a total renovation. The size of the bath is actually large, but we would like new cabinetry and to tile the shower, tub surround and floor. Other than that, we probably won't do any extensive renovating as we plan to build a new home in the next few years on some land we purchased a few months ago," Paige said.