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Ginger Zee and Ben Aaron's DIY Adventure
The renovation will be televised. Good Morning America's chief meteorologist and her husband, NYC newsman Ben Aaron, didn't know what they were in for when they decided to swap their city digs for an suburban fixer upper, but they knew all the ups and downs would be captured in their DIY Network show, Renovation Realities: Ben & Ginger.
“After two weeks I just kind of wanted to light a match and see what happens to it,” Aaron tells PEOPLE.
“There were a lot of huge costs and problems outside of the house before we even got in the door,” Zee adds.
But their vision of a family-friendly space that would better suit the couple and their one-year-old son, Adrian, paired with a sense of humor when things went awry kept them grounded throughout the process. “We might have screwed up a little bit,” Aaron says in this week’s issue, on newsstands now. “But you just have to enjoy the process.”
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BEFORE: Dark and Dreary Nursery
Zee and Aaron’s biggest priority for the nursery was to create a floor plan that would allow Zee, 36, to get ready for work early in the morning without disturbing their sleeping son.
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AFTER: Dreamy Design
Zee chose decor similar to Adrian’s room in NYC to keep him comfortable in the new house. “He’s definitely a creature of habit already, and we didn’t want to jinx any of our good sleeping,” she says. Aaron, 35, does note one difference, though. “There are a lot more elephants in this bedroom. He’s a big fan.”
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BEFORE: Bare Bedroom
The awkward layout needed a lot of work in order to transform into the master suite of Zee and Aaron's dreams. Luckily, the teardown turned out to be Aaron's calling. “He enjoys the demo,” Zee says, adding with a laugh. “Anything that’s not precise, he enjoys.”
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AFTER: Restful Retreat
Zee’s goal for the master bedroom was simple: “Peacefulness,” she says. Her gray color scheme lends the room the “spa-like” feel she craved.
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BEFORE: Kitchen Nightmare
The kitchen was in dire need of some TLC. The couple also wanted to open up the space so it would seamlessly flow into the dining room —“We took out a ton of walls,” Zee says — although Aaron's mom suggested they go another way. “My mother is so smart and has an incredible eye for design,” he says, “but I am so happy I didn’t listen to her because the open concept makes this house.”
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AFTER: Light and Bright
Classic Shaker-style cabinets and lots of white paint serve as the sensible base of the redesigned room, while lighting and fixtures bring the style. “We went a little more fashion-forward with the hardware and such, because that’s where you can take a chance,” Zee says.
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BEFORE: Closed-Off Floor Plan
Another bonus of the open layout, Zee says, is that she can finally create an entertaining-friendly home. “I’m looking forward to having people over,” she says.
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AFTER: Gathering Hub
Now the dining room is ready to host all of Zee’s guests. “I have a wine fridge and a wine bar,” she says. "I know I sound like a wine-o, but boy do I love it!”
For more details of Zee and Aaron's DIY dream home, pick up this week’s issue of PEOPLE, and tune into Renovation Realities: Ben & Ginger on May 6th at 8 p.m. EST on DIY Network.
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