The never-ending list (in my head)

Maybe this post should be titled “My out of control compulsion with starting new projects before any project is ever completed!”

Lets go through the list of unfinished projects:

The other house: tile, electric, exterior painting and some finish items

Front porch and house siding (waiting on money that will be available once the other house is finished and can be financed)

Front walkway: cut bricks around edges and landscape

side walkway to shed that I had the boys dig up but I never finished

The interior of our house (its only been 2 years now since I painted) trim around windows and doors and base molding

Hmm that’s quite an impressive list. I think this is a sickness the inability to actually finish a project!

So what do I have planned for the near future, well it seems over the next month Dan has 3 trips planned, NY for salmon fishing, FL for business, then FL again for some other charter fishing trip. Which creates 2 scenarios, first any of the jobs that need his attention or I need his help for can not be finished. Second I am able to start a new project without coming under his wrath! And there has been one project hanging over my head for a few years that has hit its breaking point.

OUR BEDROOM!

It is disgusting, embarrassing, stressful, gross, dirty and about 100 other negative adjectives. We redid it about about 15 years ago, tearing down all the walls and the ceiling, to make the whole upstairs 1 big bedroom. We painted it purple and put in purple carpet. As you can imagine 15 or so years later I am really tired of purple. And the carpet is just dirty and gross. Plus tearing down all those walls eliminated any little alcove that could have been used for a closet. The clutter of Dan’s clothes being EVERWHERE (and I do mean everywhere, it’s like sharing a bedroom with a super messy teenage girl) and all the other crap (fishing lures, tools, office stuff…) that gets dumped up there is just too much!

Here are a few of my dream rooms, you’ll notice how light and airy and empty they are.

Day 9 – Clean Bedroom, Better Sleep 5 Calming Bedroom Design Ideas. I love the colors and that mirror. Bedroom Design. Soothing bedroom color palette. Paint Color is Farrow & Ball Cornforth White 228. Finish is Estate Emulsion. #Bedroom #ColorPalette #GrayBedroom love!!

in contrast to my actual bedroom… (I did not clean anything up for these pics, obviously. This is really how my bedroom looks all the time.)

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But no more, once Dan leaves at 5am Fri morning for NY I will be emptying out that pigsty of a bedroom, tearing up the carpet, and starting to paint. I have also talked to our contractors about coming in and building a wall (wait didn’t we tear those all down?) so that I can have a proper closet to hide all the clothes.Still waiting to hear on that estimate, normally Dan would do all our building but he’s a little too busy fishing to do such mundane work.

I will be doing another blog after this weekend to update on my progress, in the meantime don’t expect any fun girly get-togethers this weekend, I’ve got way to much work to do for any of that.

The first day of Spring

And it is only 43 degrees, brrr… unless you’re working out in your yard, then you may build up a little bit of a sweat. I was motivated to clean up my flower beds because I bought myself a present at the antique mall today.

The antique mall where I have my booth is like my very own room of requirements from Harry Potter. if there is something that I am pining for eventually it pops up in one of the many booths at the mall. When I go in to restock my booth I will walk down just one or two aisles on my way out. Even while walking through such a limited part of the mall I happen upon treasures that I have been searching for.

Today’s treasure is something I’ve been talking about for a few months now. But I really didn’t think that I had any hope of finding one. Until I walked around a corner at the antique mall and right in the middle of a booth I saw a claw foot cast iron bathtub! Yay, I think I squealed when I saw it.

I love having two strong boys to help me move things around. Because this tub is HEAVY!

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BJ tends to get hurt at my house, so I don’t know why he is the one walking backwards through the rock garden.

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I’m not sure if that will be its permanent home, I’ll have to watch it for awhile and see how I feel. Whenever it does find it’s final home then I will start worm composting in it. I think I need to clear out some of the other yard junk around the tub, the tub put me over the maximum amount of yard junk for one area. No worries I have plenty of other areas to spread it to.

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Intervention

What is the word for someone that never completes a project? I actually tried to Google that and I didn’t come up with anything. Whatever it is, unfortunately, it describes both Dan and me. Which, I guess, is why over the past 16 years not one single project has been completely, all the way, finished around our house. There is always something left behind, trim around the door upstairs, posts not cut to height on the fence, siding put on the top part of the garage… the list goes on. We literally have never finished any job we’ve started on this house.

Which is pretty scary considering how much finish work is still left in this remodel. So how do we handle that? Do we go room by room finishing things off? No, we head outside and completely destroy the yard in an effort to redo the landscaping, remove the cement walkway, put in a new patio and add an outdoor kitchen area. WHAT? Are you serious? We really have a problem!

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This all started because of that damn drywell, that hopefully will help with the flooding the backyard. It really better eliminate the flooding!

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Oh my, at one point the back yard was actually a nice space. I don’t think I really appreciated like I should have.

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The boys have got to be SO sick of all of these house projects. I suggested to Thomas that we could start flipping house and he vehemently disagreed! He does not want to be part of any more remodeling!

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But he did finally get to drive the tractor.

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Well that is definitely a clean slate, just waiting for us to do something with it. Dare I say, finish it…

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Yes, even the side yard was destroyed in the process.

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The metamorphosis of a house

During my 3 month absence from the blogging world our home renovation has made some leaps and bounds. Back in April Dan was just finishing up all the framing to get the house ready for the drywallers.

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The drywallers came and over a 4 day period they hung, mudded and sanded all the drywall for 4 rooms of the house. Which meant the house was 1 big dusty mess.

This is the new, smaller office/ back entry. We made it a little narrower so that we can make the bathroom a little bigger (when and if that project ever gets started.) That is also a new back door that will eventually be the only back exit once the kitchen remodel happens.

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This is standing in the office looking into the dining room. Turns out I really didn’t like how closed in I felt once the dry wall was put up. It took a little time but I eventually came around.

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This is the new dining room, which used to be a bedroom. Now you can walk through to the living room, that wall used to be closed off.

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There’s that new window that Dan moved, now we don’t have to look directly into our neighbors kitchen.

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And here is 1/2 of the living room, I guess I didn’t take a pic of the whole living room.

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The day after the drywallers finished Dan left for a trip to Seattle which left me home alone for 10 days of painting fun.

There were many walls in the house that looked like this:

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Every morning I would drive to Lowes by 7am and I would choose several sample colors to bring home and try out. Day after day I did this. Until I finally settled on a beachy color scheme.

And this is where we are now…There’s still quite a bit of finish work that needs to be done, but we have walls. That seems to be the sentiment that everyone shares when I lament on all that is not done.

This is the office/ new back yard exit. I have hopes of finishing our back porch into my art space. This door will enter into that space. Ironically I have hated the color blue for as long as I can remember, I had always used warm colors in the house before, red, yellows, and some greens. But I wanted to go completely different this time and all of a sudden I decided I like blue. I was worried when I painted the office that it was too pastel (I hate pastels) I thought the room looked like a Easter egg, but it really grew on me, especially with the white accents.

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This is the dining room (looking into the office) I love the cream and darker bluish/green accent color. That wall goes into the kitchen so that color will also be a part of the kitchen if we ever get to that part of the remodel.

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The living room I really struggled with. I love the pale blue on the walls. Then I wanted a accent color that really popped and I just couldn’t make a decision. I don’t love what I chose. I think it would be fine for a bedroom but I don’t love it for the living room.

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This was a quick temporary paint job on 1 wall in the kitchen. I do like the look of it but eventually it will be changed since this wall will have cabinets on it.

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And here’s the view from the kitchen into the living room. We took down this wall too, which really opened the space up. We’ll eventually have French doors where those red windows are opening onto the side yard.

The chimney is staying, we love the way it looks. But it does need to be cleaned up. I’m just not exactly sure how to go about that.

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It has been a really long process and both Dan and I are completely sick of this renovation. It takes over your life, its always hanging over your head. Hopefully some day it will all be done. But in the mean time, at least we have walls!

What’s Dan been up to

He’s been spending all his free time trying to get this renovation done. There is just not enough time in the weekend for him to finish the house, plant all the seeds for our garden and fish! Poor Dan all he ever does is work, work, work.

This weekend he got our new back door installed. I’m really excited about having the glass door in the back of the office. Once the back porch is cleaned off and not a staging area for all the construction stuff it will be really nice to look outside and see the back yard.

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First he had to remove the existing window and raise the header.

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Then he had to frame in the spot for  the new door. And Finally he had to build a new doorjamb and install both the jamb and the door. It’s way more work to install a door than one would think.

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Boy the office is bright with that huge hole in the wall. Of course today was cold outside since there was a big hole in the wall all day.

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That’s a very fancy lock system we have going across the door.

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A new helper around the house

My sister and her family are in the process of moving back to Ohio from Seattle! We are all so excited to have our family back together again. The journey to Ohio is happening in stages. The first person to make the trip is my nephew BJ, or as I hear he now goes by William. He got in Wed night and we have already put him to work on the house.

There was one section going into the kitchen that still needed that dreaded plaster and lathe board knocked down. In an effort to not cover the kitchen in black dust I put up tarps on all 4 sides of the space and I was hoping the boys could just stick their arm in the sheets with a crow bar and pull it all down.

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That worked, kind of…they managed to get a bit of the plaster to fall down.

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But eventually BJ just had to climb in and really go to town on it.

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Yeah it was really that dusty. But he did have a breathing mask and goggles on.

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This is only about half of the debris, I cleaned up half way through to try and keep him from stepping on any nails (that didn’t quite work he did step on a nail that I had to pull out of his shoe, oops. He was a trooper he never even complained.)

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Here’s the finished area, all the plaster down and ready to be dry walled….

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I love having some fresh blood to help around here. I think we’ve worn our own kids out. Poor Daniel never even comes to visit anymore for fear that we’ll put him to work. Will this renovation ever be done?????

The floors are all up

This is where the day started, so empty and clean…

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Boards coming up and nails being removed.

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Thomas has been right by Dan’s side all day.

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Daniel came by to help but he hurt himself in the first 10 seconds and was demoted to vacuuming.

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Poor Ann, there is just no where for her to go. She can’t get upstairs to my bed, she can’t get to the couch. She’s trapped pacing in the kitchen wanting to find a nice soft place to take a nap.

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And here’s where we are now. Oh boy I thought it was dangerous to walk around before. I’m trapped just like Ann. Time for Dan and Daniel to go buy more plywood so we can get that sub-floor down. Like Daniel said his best ability is being able to help carry stuff. Three years of engineering school and all the boy can do is carry wood.

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Watch your step!

Be very careful if you come to visit us in the near future and you probably don’t want to bring any small children. The floor is coming up and it makes for an unsteady walking experience.

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Really if you were to walk in the front door you would end up in the basement.

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And it’s very challenging to get in and out of my bedroom. The boys have no problems just walking on the joist’s but if I want to try and get across I just can’t. Even when the plywood is down I have to hold on the something because it feel like I might just fall through.

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No worries though Dan didn’t leave everything in this complete state of destruction. He put down plywood and covered up enough of the holes that I can kinda walk around without worrying too much.

Pulling up the floors

Finally this weekend we had the time and the gumption to get started on pulling up the 100 year old pine floors that separate the living room from the basement. It’s a long and delicate process lifting the old wood floors. The very large nails that are holding it in place cause the wood to splinter and break apart. Since we’re relaying this floor on top of a new and level subfloor we need to minimize the breakage as much as possible. Dan will be gluing together any major splinters, so for now blue painters tape is holding together any broken pieces.

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We started in the corner that covers the freezer and pantry. Now that we see how much dirt, grime and wood splinters will be falling through into the basement, we know that we’ll have to put up tarps in the kids bedrooms before that section is removed.

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Dan is happy that he now has access to our crumbling cement foundation so he can remorter the top of it. He can also get into the nooks and crannies and fix all the cold air leaks. It also gives us an opportunity to get in the unreachable parts of the foundation and vacuum up all the years of dust.

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Here is Dan checking for cats in the cold air return before he puts the plywood down. Of course the cats went straight for this new and undiscovered area to play. I was worried one of them would fall down the hole that goes right into the furnace but they managed to avoid that, thank goodness!

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Here is our very temporary floor just to prevent anyone from falling through the floor joists. During any free time Dan can conjure this week he will finish pulling up the floor in this section and loosely lay the plywood floor. Once all the floor in the living room is lifted he will level the floor joists by adding wood wherever is needed then he will permanently lay the plywood that will be our new sub-floor. And that will be the floor we have until later in the spring after the framing and drywall is completed. Then we will finally relay the hardwood floor. I’m hoping I get less slivers with the plywood than I do with the rough hardwood.

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House renovation

So where are we with the renovation? We decided to take a break over the holidays and instead we made lots of owls. We also pondered where to go next. We gathered up some numbers for drywall guys, we made a mental note to order more foam to finish up the insulation, we continually talked about taking care of the finishing touches on the electric and duct work.

We replaced the vertical window in the dining room with a higher horizontal window.

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We also replaced the sliding glass door upstairs and built a little roof over it.

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We also decided that we really need to lift all the hard wood floors and lay a subfloor then relay the hardwood floor. Its just way to noisy in the basement with only having the 1 layer of flooring in-between the 2 levels. One more thing that has to be done before we can drywall.

We missed our deadline of having this phase done by our New Years Eve party, but the longer we live with the construction the more we solidify our ideas of how we want it to turn out. Some of our plans from when we started have changed. Turns out living in a space with no walls is kind of annoying. So we’ll be adding some French doors to divide the living room and dining room. And I’m seriously considering getting rid of the office all together and instead having this room…

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It feels so much more relaxing than the clutter of a home office. Even though I’m always drawn to this shabby chic look, Dan and Thomas have pointed out that I would not be able to stand this amount of clutter either. I think I can.