Out Of Left FieldHardworking parents of teenagers often dream of taking a long vacation with the hopes that their kids won’t destroy the house while they’re gone. The Schoonovers, however, found a surprise that really blew their minds. Though the parents trusted their girls, they never realized that Hollie, Halice, Haley, and even eldest sister Heather, had a few tricks up their sleeves. As they finally made their way back to their home in North Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, a popular vacation spot among those living in the eastern United States, Karen and Chip expected that they would simply be returning to their regular lives.
The Four H’s
With each successive girl that joined the Schoonover family, Karen and Chip decided that each of them should have a name that started with “H.” Heather is their eldest daughter, and she had already left home several years before the incident when she got married. Her younger sisters, Hollie, Halice, and Haley were determined to enlist her into their scheme. As their parents set off for vacation, the girls were ready to set their plan into action.
The Shining Light
A Star In The Making
Even though the plan was Hollie’s by design, she never quite aspired to become an interior designer. In fact, Hollie had always harbored loftier ambitions, as she hoped to become a working actress and singer. Entertainment is not an easy industry to break into, however, so in the meantime, she has begun offering her services to friends and family as a makeup artist. It’s a career path she hopes will materialize as she continues her training.
Snapshots Of Time
Taking A Study Break
While her two more artistic sisters chose a less traditional path as they sought to make their names in more visual mediums, Halice wanted to follow her eldest sister’s path and attend university. Halice didn’t stray too far from home when she matriculated into Coastal Carolina University. She wasn’t the first in the family to attend the school though, as Heather charted the same path several years before. Upon finishing her Bachelor’s degree, she wants to go to graduate school for physical therapy.
Back To Her Roots
Making Big Moves
The Schoonover family may feel like an integral part of the North Myrtle Beach community, but that wasn’t always the case. All four of the girls were born in Seminole, Florida, where they spent the better part of their childhoods. After their relocation, however, the whole Schoonover family began to really feel that North Myrtle Beach was where they were meant to be. This love of their home made the girls’ gift all the more meaningful to them.
Racking Up The Views
Starting From The Bottom
The girls were hoping to give their home a little bit of a makeover while their parents were away. Though some children think that simply cleaning up the house is enough of a gift for hard-working parents, the girls wanted to take things a step further. However, they didn’t realize just how much work they’d be taking on. Not only that, none of them had ever engaged in this sort of home renovation before, making it uncertain if they’d pull off their Christmas gift.
Out With The Old
A Clean Slate
Their home renovation wasn’t going to get any easier as the girls moved on to the real renovation tasks at hand. Hollie may have thought they were being overly ambitious with their design plan, but even so, they pressed forward, ripping out all of the old carpeting in the process. As they muddled their way into the bulk of the most strenuous work, the girls discovered that the best way to dispose of the old carpeting was by throwing it out of a window.
I Get By With A Little Help From My Friends
As Hollie and her sisters plotted the gift of a lifetime for their parents, they wanted to make sure that as much of the decor was as updated as possible. That meant not only cleaning up and painting, but also chipping in to buy some new furniture for the living room. The girls would find, however, that getting new furniture was far easier than disposing of the old. Despite their collective muscle, they documented a hilarious struggle to push their old couch off the porch and into the yard.
Flexing Their Abilities
Playing To Their Strengths
Being so close in age definitely had its advantage for the Schoonover sisters, as they were no strangers to working together. Such a big project like renovating their whole house in a week would have been impossible if they weren’t able to band together and use each girls’ strengths in order to keep pressing forward. When they were younger, the girls would work together in much the same way as they pursued a family past time of geocaching.
Hitting The Hurdles
Looking For A Boost
As dawn rose over the chilly morning, the girls grumbled their way out of bed, pulling on their old, dirty clothes in preparation for the day’s work. None of them had slept much the night before, and they were struggling to stay motivated, as their house was nearly unlivable. In order to get themselves into work mode, one of the girls came home with a pack of energy drinks, in which the rest of her sisters happily partook.
Wearing Them Down
Feeling The Physical Strain
The week was more than halfway through, and the girls still had a mountain of work in front of them. They weren’t just tired from the lack of sleep. As they noted in their video, their backs were beginning to hurt, and their legs were still sore from the amount of standing they’d done so far. It was love for their parents that continued driving their project, even as the girls felt a little bit like they were floundering.
Finding Their Numbers Depleted
All By Themselves
Haley took the camera for herself to document the progress the two girls had made by themselves on day five. Hollie sat on the floor of the dining room, slowly painting details on the wall in a pale blue. Haley explained that it had been just the two of them, but even so, a major accomplishment had occurred. The two girls, all on their own, had installed the new carpets in place of what they’d tossed in the trash.
Up All night
Hearts On Their Sleeves
It was Hollie who took the camera in the car on the morning of day six if only to show off to their parents just how tired they were. When asking Haley how she felt, she responded, “I feel like I’m in the army.” Hollie got candid with the camera, showing off her “stress acne” that had flared up around her face. They needed to put the finishing touches on the rest of the painting, and then put all the furniture back.
Using A Decoy
An Enticing Introduction
“We’re so nervous,” whispered Hollie into the camera. As the girls watched their parents pulling into the driveway, they began filming for the final moments of their parents Christmas gift. However, when all was said and done, the girls decided to use part of this sequence as the opening to the video they would eventually post on YouTube. The girls scurried between the camera and the window, watching to make sure they caught their parents on time.
Uncovering Hidden Treasure
Off The Trail
Karen and Chip Schoonover pulled into their driveway feeling refreshed from their week away, but immediately, they knew something felt different. As they left the car, Karen stood, inspecting the yard, trying to put her finger on what had changed when her four daughters walked out of the house together. Karen and Chip had only expected three. “Hey! Hey! What are you doing here!” Karen exclaimed to Heather. Both parents were overcome with surprise and joy at seeing their daughter home.
Judging A Book By Its Cover
It’s Not Over Yet
As the girls had planned, Heather was going to tell their parents, “Your surprise isn’t over yet” before leading them inside to see the work they’d done. Neither Karen nor Chip could fathom what had occurred in the week they’d been away. The girls advised their mother to “take a deep breath” before leading both parents inside of the newly renovated house. Karen and Chip stepped through the threshold and proceeded to have their minds completely blown.
Cards On The Table
Rewards Of A Challenge
Karen and Chip stepped from the entryway into the kitchen, and Karen quickly found herself overwhelmed by emotion. Tears streaming down her face, she marveled at the sleek new look her daughters had designed for their kitchen. They had painted the walls a comforting, pale blue while accenting it with striking brown cabinets. They’d even managed to replace the old countertops with gleaming slabs of polished marble. The girls insisted there was still more to see.
Dining In Style
Updating Their Comfort
The girls led their parents into the master bedroom, excited to show that they had taken care of every single detail. Karen practically danced into the room, feeling the soft carpeting give way under her feet. Chip stood at the doorway in shock, hardly daring to breathe as he took in the huge change. Karen might have been effusive, but Chip was stoic in his surprise, staring at each new discovery with his jaw nearly hitting the floor.
Shining With Gratitude
An Open Invitation
Karen and Chip were still in shock when the girls ushered them out of their bedroom and into the guest bedrooms. They had beautifully made it up in the same style and color scheme as the rest of the house. Like with the other rooms, the bedsheets, comforters, and curtains were all new. The astonished parents could help but feel pride that they’d raised such thoughtful daughters. It was clear they had put in not only an extensive amount of time but also money.
The Internet Takes Note
Shortly after the surprise was revealed, Hollie added the video of their renovation to her YouTube account. It was the first video she had ever posted, but it didn’t go unnoticed. Little by little, the views began to climb, as first hundreds, then thousands of people began tuning in to see the girls’ story. Within a few months, the girls had garnered nearly 115 thousand views on the video of their Christmas surprise. The moment was not going to stop there.