Photo Jul 13, 5 06 40 PM.jpg

A quaint brick home on Emoriland Boulevard is more than just another house in the neighborhood. It's the sacred place that the Nelson family calls home. 

As soon as you walk in this home, you are promptly welcomed with rich character and attention to detail. There's a sense of welcome and belonging that this residence offers. That has something to do with the work put into it, as well as the warmth and generosity of the family who dwells there. 

Mark and Monica Nelson knew they wanted to move their family and their lives closer to downtown. Mark has been the senior pastor at Crossings Church since 2007 and this had much to do with the stirring to move closer into the city. The revitalization of downtown and specifically Market Square had an impact on their desire to be involved in the downtown community. They began searching in Old North as well as Emoriland & Fairmont. 

Coming from their previous home in Karns, they knew they wanted something a little different. They were used to a neighborhood full of homes that had nearly identical design and floor plan, and they were ready to get their hands on a more historic home with good bones that could use a little love and a lot of hard work. It was certainly a commitment to leave the life they had grown to love while raising their children, they were ready to make the move as their youngest was beginning her senior year of high school. While moving downtown was a step outside of their "comfort zone", it opened them to whole new experience of community they were ready for.

When a "coming soon" sign popped up in the yard of this brick Cape Cod style house on Emoriland Blvd, they quickly went to see it and made an offer on it that day. While it needed some work and restructuring, the house was the "different" they had been looking for. Before jumping to "replace" and "demo" most of the house, they took time to thoroughly research the history of the home as well as the people who called it home previously. 

Restoration began in March and was completed just three months. Monica wanted a home with kitchen that would be warm, welcoming, and inviting; a room that emphasized hospitality. During the renovation, she did a lot of the painting herself. In the three months that the Renaissance Creations team was working on the house, Mark & Monica met over twenty people who lived in their new neighborhood. They experienced more interaction in those three months than the previous nine years in their old neighborhood. 

Thanks to a shared boulevard of green space running between streets, houses being closer together, and sidewalks- they began to taste and see the depth of community here they were craving. Not only does the neighborhood offer shared physical space, but the community is committed to hosting events for individuals and families to gather. Ice cream socials, potluck dinners, Christmas tours, garden tours and house shows are just a few of the events put on by the neighborhood association. 

From the small details of arched hallways to deep and meaningful relationships with neighbors- this home is well loved inside and out by the Nelsons. The Nelsons moved in with intentions of staying. They plan on growing old in this home and raising their grandkids here. We love watching the roots grow deeper and deeper as the years pass and a family plants themselves in the lives of their neighbors. The diversity they have encountered has enriched their lives greatly. We are so grateful that we had the opportunity to help restore this home for their family. It's a beautiful depiction of the Kingdom of God, families following the way of Jesus as He moved into the neighborhood and lived among the people He loved.