Sunday, March 28, 2010


This week we moved on to the main bathroom. Let's start with a before photo!

I especially loved taking this photo. I walked around the corner to find my hubby and dad tag teaming the sinks :)

Yes it's a mess, but boy what plumbers they are!

And, here's what it looks like now! This is the mirror from our bedroom set and is not permanent. We have the frames for the new matching mirrors, but have not cut the mirrors for them yet. I'm dying to finish the drywall and slap up a coat of paint!!! Tile should be in soon too!
Question of the Day. What color would you paint this bathroom? The back splash and floor tiles are all going to be a creamy variegated tile to match the counter tops.

And just to make him happy, I have to mention my awesome brother. He was interested in making a little cash, so I put him to work on the raised planters.

After! Great job baby brother. I can't wait to fill them full of veggies... after a few repairs.

Oh, I forgot to mention... I did all the blackberry removal. I have all of the cuts and scrapes and scars to prove it!
This house has proved to be more work than I ever imagined. We could never have taken it all on without so much love, support, and back breaking labor from all of our friends and family.
Thanks guys.
Thanks to all of you, this house is starting to feel like a home.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Kitchen Montage!

Today was so right in so many ways. I feel the need for a kitchen montage! We'll start at the beginning so you can watch our progress step by step.
This photo was taken on 10-24-09 The day we made an offer on the house.

On Nov. 7th we started Demo. We kept all of the old cabinet's in tact intending on donating them. We ended up keeping them to install in the garage instead. Note the original blue color!

The sink cabinet gave us some problems as the plumbing had been installed over it. We had to rip this cabinet up completely.

We took hammers to the soffit boxes. They exposed a bunch of bad wiring, and tons of insulation fell onto the floor.

My dad rewired the entire kitchen.

We removed the glass slider and our contractor Tim installed a new one.

My husband and brother in law recovered the entire ceiling and areas where the cabinet's wouldn't cover.

There was originally a door to the family room which we immediately took out. It bumped up against the kitchen counters. We then tore into the wall to create an inviting opening.

With the new header in place we moved onto installing our first cabinets. Dan and I worked together to hang every one of these cabinets. The lower ones were a pain. The walls were neither level, plumb nor square. In some places the cabinet's had 3/4" shims.

But we kept at it.

We may have even gotten a little cocky at our power tool prowess.

I helped drywall in the new doorway.

As more cabinet's lined up I got more excited.

Until my hubby decided to texturize the ceiling. It was a nightmare. It's still not finished. He dreads trying again.

I eventually primed all of the walls and ceiling. Bye Bye robins egg blue paint from the 70's!

It took me weeks, but I finally picked out a beautiful shade of brown. The doorway is looking nice also.

We even put in a fridge!

As we realized we'd have to move in earlier than we'd thought the mess started piling up.

I scraped the old linoleum off the floors. Gizmo helped.

Oh glorious day. When we installed the upper cabinet's and shelving, the upper half of the wall was straight! Plumb, square, level! It was so easy! I knew something had to go wrong.

I was right. We had a terrible time putting in this fridge alcove wall.

And then we realized we had to cut out a much bigger whole in the brick than we originally thought. The smallest oven we could find was still not as small as the old one.

But once again, my hubby pulled through.

And it's absolutely amazing looking.

Then we realized that the cabinet we'd purchased for the stove top wouldn't fit the stove top. We freaked, and I may have cried. Then we brainstormed with the parental units, and realized I had purchased kitchen height cabinet's for the laundry room and one of them was big enough for the stove. It's an incredibly tight fit, but it works. We'll just have a super skinny bathroom cabinet that will only hold toilet paper rolls instead of cookie sheets.

My gosh. I can't tell you. Last night when I went in my kitchen and saw the valance. I nearly lost it. I remember the day we saw the house for the first time. I immediately started emailing my mom ideas on how I was going to remodel this kitchen. The first thing I thought of was that valance and shelf. My mom brought me back a bowl from Mexico last month. I can't wait to buy a stand for it and give it a seat on that shelf. This really is a dream come true for me.

Today the guy from Precision Countertops came and started installing. I can't believe how they attached the sink seamlessly to the counter top!

Step two. Do you see the seam by the dishwasher? He took the neatest suction cup vice grips, then glued and melted the seam down. You can hardly tell it was ever there. It looks like it's all one piece!

We had some fun cutting out the stove top whole with him. But the guy was so nice and worked so hard. He even told Dan exactly how he was doing everything and offered us the option of buying some extra supplies he had left over for our laundry room so Dan could install it himself.

It's not perfect. But it's home. As I type, my dad, brother, and husband are hooking up the garbage disposal, sink drains, stove and downdraft. In the morning I'm cooking the biggest breakfast you've ever seen.


Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Back to the blog again

I find myself slacking more and more on this blog as life takes over. Then again, it's been a rather uneventful couple of weeks. The weather turned beautiful and we've been spending the majority of our time outdoors, and believe me... there's a lot of exterior work still to be done.
I will start out with the fireplace. Which my daughter believes is her own personal playground. We purchased a set of doors to install, unfortunately the fireplace is so short and wide that we will have to return them and have some custom made. Cha Ching!

Spring is here! My peach tree exploded into beautiful flowers.

Dan's Coral Bark Maple is happily sunning itself on our back porch.

Dad installed a security light in the back... which is malfunctioning and won't turn off. It's supposed to be motion sensitive.

My Hyacinths and Daffodils popped up everywhere in giant clumps. I believe the yard used to be well loved, but the bulbs haven't been separated in a very long time. I'm going to have fun in the fall!

Over the span of many days we have been rolling around the carpet of twigs on the ground. It's as if nobody has raked this 1/3 acre in over 5 years. I do believe we could charge admission for the world's largest tumble weed.

See all of that lumber? ALL of it was buried in the back yard. And I do mean buried. It took me 2 days to clean out the back corner under the willow trees, there was so much debris, garbage, lumber, and blackberry brambles. I'm all cut up. And I feel like you can't even see my progress. Apparently I am wrong though, because at all hours of the day while we are out there weeding, mowing, raking, and just plain hauling away garbage, people in the park stop by our fence. Complete strangers stop to tell us how incredible the yard and house are looking. I can't tell you how much it boosts my soul every time somebody tells me how abandoned this big beautiful old house was and how thrilled they are that somebody is caring for it again.

He's also only slightly amused at my use of the camera.

I planted Spinach, Broccoli, Carrots, Tomatoes, and Peas. So far the spinach is turning yellow, the broccoli is turning red and wilting, and none of my seeds are popping up :( I fertilized... nothing happened. I started herb seeds in pots inside. They all sprouted... then shriveled up. I kept coaxing and had a few alive again, then Dan tossed something on the porch and it bounced and broke all of the pots and my poor seedlings are all gone. I'm so frustrated!

Nemi's enjoying the little spot I set aside for her to garden in. See all those rocks behind her? They were previously in the middle of our lawn. It took us 2 days, but we moved them all to the side of the house for landscaping.

We did get a shelf hung in the kitchen. And I painted some window trim white in the nursery and living room. The counter top guys come on Thursday and my counters, sink, stove, and downdraft will be installed. Boy, I can't wait to be able to cook real food again! They also will be doing the bathroom counters, and the guys will install the sinks soon after. I had custom frames made for the mirrors and as soon as they are centered on the sinks we will also center the new light fixtures and patch the drywall. The tile for back splashes, tub surround, and flooring has all been ordered and will be here in 2 weeks. We are kind of at a standstill for a few days, but I feel like everything is about to fall into place.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Your a Winner!

All I have to say is.... Best... Week... EVER!
Dan secured the bathroom cabinet's.

My dad wired for the oven and put in a new ground wire.

They then installed my new double oven, which we then had to pull back out, because somehow.... the cat got trapped in the crawlspace under it. After we got poor Charlie out, and checked if he was okay of course, we reinstalled the oven!

We were so excited! And I made pizza!!!! 2 pizza's! In 2 different ovens!!!!!!

Then the countertop guy came from Precision Countertops.

He laid out a template with these thin slats of wood and hot glued them together with the raddest glue gun I've ever seen! He also did the bathroom. We should have countertops installed within 2 weeks!
The best part of this week came when I read my email.....
Okay.... riiiiight. But then I thought ??? How could they know I went to the Portland Home and Garden Show, or that I did indeed enter to win a set of furniture? So I googled the phone# and it did indeed belong to Furniture Connexion. Then I googled the company and they were indeed legit... hmmmm. I called. The lady was so nice and said it's all waiting for you! I said... what do I have to do? Nothing, just come pick it up! The owner wants to meet you and congratulate you and take some pictures.... hmmmm.
I hadn't told my husband yet. So I sauntered out to the living room and said... uh... honey? I just won a $4000 bedroom set! It hadn't hit me yet. It took about until we had rented the uhaul and my stepdad and brother had come over to help us move it. Then I started bouncing up and down and squealing like MAD! We drove to the warehouse and met the nicest husband and wife team you'd ever meet! We took tons of photos with them and their employees. You could really tell they cared for their staff, they even insisted the warehouse loading crew get into the photos with us! You can visit their website here. They asked if it was okay if they posted the pics on their facebook page. I of course consented! You can visit their facebook here.
We got home and the boys started unloading the uhaul. At this point I was squeeeeeing and bouncing and jumping and almost in tears! Was this really happening?

Boy this stuff was heavy. Good thing I didn't have to carry any of it!

I mean look at that box!!!!

I think that's a dresser.

Go boys GO!

We could hardly move in the bedroom it was so packed with furniture!

Then we realized... we have to assemble it. LOL This was fun. Including this first part where Dan is assembling the headboard which is two pieces. Well, apparently a screw had been dropped on the floor directly where that headboard is lying, and while he worked on it, it put a big gouge in the front. Ah well, stuff happens. I just happened to know where the wood filler wax stick was for the kitchen cabinets. I patched the scratch right up, and you can hardly tell it was ever there.

I did get in on some action. I put in the middle support. Yah, that's all I did... but it was help! The footboard has two drawers in it!

Our platform, and slats. Oh, Dan just reminded me. I did also install the slats. I screwed them down! :) Gizmo dog was a HUGE help... NOT!

Step by step you see... Mattress!

And of course we HAD to test it out!!!

The dressers both have these feet on them which raises them up and makes them oh so chic.

The tops of the dressers and end tables are so very pretty. Instead of a one piece top, there is a framing and inlay.

Dan's tall dresser is so tall, I have to stand on my tippie toes to see inside the top drawer! My wider chest does come with a vanity mirror, but it would block a window no matter where I put it, so I decided to leave it off. I haven't even opened the box yet... thinking of mounting it on the wall somewhere?

A better shot of the top of the dresser. Soooo pretty!

The end table is lit under the drawer with a touch lamp! It's so wierd! Kind of like a nightlight if you wake up at night? It has 3 brightness settings.

I think they approve. Baby girl spent about an hour learning how to fling herself all over the bed. She now can climb up and slide off all on her own.

And this is what we are left with. Did I mention about 2 days ago we finally burnt all of the moving boxes and cleaned this room? SIGH.......

Oh... this picture reminds me. This furniture is Legacy Classic Furniture, the owner of The Furniture Connexion said it's a set they purchased from Macy's collections, and is a discontinued set. I am in heaven. I think I forgot to mention the state of our old furniture. The bedframe broke months ago and we've been sleeping with our mattress on the floor inside the old frame. In the move, my dresser broke and the entire bottom was broken off, the bottom drawer wouldn't function anymore. This really was a lifesaver for us. After all of the amazingly bad luck we've had over the past year, I really couldn't believe something nice like this happened! I'm still in shock!
All I can say is.... I'm grateful. Incredibly grateful and blessed.