Sunday, July 31, 2016

Remodeling, Part 2

The addition is now finished and we are all done except for framing a few windows.
That will be done after we have replaced the old dark paneling with light pine wood.

Yesterday and today we took down the bricks that covered a section of the west wall. It was where the previous owner had a wood stove when he first owned the house.

What he told us. He had a chimney fire and converted over to LP because the Fire Department is all volunteer and slow to respond.

We found that he had bricked over the fire damage. And while it was a bit concerning to see it, no structural damage had occurred.

This chimney fire occurred about 30 years ago and the previous owner died about 12 years ago.

The weather cooperated and it was cool enough to have windows open and a fan in one to suck out the dust.

And here are a few views of the outside of the rest of the house, I believe Lori Skoog wanted to see what it looked like.
So I remembered to take them for you Lori!

North Side Entrance and bedroom.

 We have some serious landscaping and grading to do yet!

East side of the house and the pile of bricks we were removing.

Part 2 of the Little House Remodel is ongoing. The exterior and addition portions are done and it looks fantastic.

Friday, July 29, 2016

The cabinet is in and settling up.

The hole to the right of the red door was where we decided to have a 'in the wall dresser' built.

And it came!

Morris gives it a once over. He is our quality assurance dog. He seemed to approve.

When Kurt built this he didn't realize that he had picked out the same exact wood that we were using on the 'old' part of the house. Pine Wainscoting.

The dresser looks fantastic. A big nod to Rich for the idea and Kurt for his input also. Kurt thought we could put a closet in this area, and Rich wondered about an 'in the wall dresser' to save space in our little downstairs bedroom.

Perfect. Wonderful work and craftsmanship!

While Rich and I looked over the expenditures for our remodel, Kurt installed these ceramic pulls.

I really like them. They are called Pumpkin Ceramic pulls. I'll probably have then on the rest of the cabinets as I find them easy to use.

We looked over our final budget and of course as with most remodels, items went over budget and Kurt went through everything with us before he gave us some privacy to look at it and talk to him about it.

Yes, we went with solid pine doors for the interior doors and got the nicer trim for the windows. We added a water softener, the trim for the gables went over budget. When Kurt broke it down it all made perfect sense.

We went over the bottom line and decided we could handle it without going to the bank.

Now the rest of the interior work is up to us. That is coming along a bit more slowly than if we had 3 guys working on it of course.
But it will look fantastic once it is done.

The old paneling has been removed. Now if the weather would straighten up, we'd be able to open up the house and remove the rest of the brick. 

Rich counted something like 300+ bricks that needed to be taken out.

To keep some costs down at the moment, I got creative and used some pine crates to make my linen tower. If I replace the crates, it will have to be a custom built one.
We might even modify these crates to make one.

However, I sort of like this idea and it is handy to be able to grab towels, hand towels, and washcloths in the same room! A lot better than having it all in the coat closet on a shelf!

I have a behind the toilet stand that a neighbor gave me that is used.
It needs a bit of clean up and with a paint job it will help with the bathroom storage.

My husband wants the bathroom to stay white, and I almost agree with him. I'd like to add my own little touches of course,...what woman doesn't?

I did add the personalized shower curtain. One person made a comment that it was 'too' dark. I don't know about that. But I do know that I can change over to my white lace one or my country graphic one any time the mood strikes me and they will all look nice.

Finally, a view of the porch side of the house from the garden. The other side is still a mess and needs to be graded again and black dirt brought in and seeded.

With these gully washers of rains this month, there are wash outs and a lot of erosion in the yard.

However, this side still looks quite beautiful.

So onward we go into the next step of 'self interior remodeling'.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Moving along

Remember this?

It is starting to look like this:

I can't believe the difference this is making! It looks fantastic.
When my husband first presented me with this idea, I was a huge skeptic.

Not so any more!

Well it did go from this:

To this!

The trim on the beam across the top of the photo has now been finished also.

In the new little bedroom we are awaiting the built in dresser to be put in. Kurt estimated it would be ready last Friday, but then said it would be delayed.

At this point we are moving things out of the living room and into other areas, like the small downstairs bedroom and into the basement for storage while we work on the living room and dining area.

Morris was a huge help to me while I used a light coat of Acrylic sealer on the basement hand rails.

The basement is nothing to write home about yet, but it is cool, dry, and a convenient place to store things out of the way now until we build some shelving.

All this work is tough on a little dog who has to constantly supervise.

We'll probably do inside work today after chores. Our area is currently experiencing an 'Excessive Heat Warning'. 

Saturday, July 16, 2016

It's all about doors!

As you can see, the doors are being installed and framed in. The washer and dryer now reside behind two beautiful pine doors.

[Here is this are pre remodel]

We hung a sheet across the bathroom door for privacy and it worked pretty well.
That too has been replaced.

A very special door got installed for the basement entrance. It is a spoon carved door. I have no idea how old it is, but I know that it was the front door to the farmhouse where my husband's father was born.

It is in the ... not quite finished room. The whole in the wall is going to be a dresser that is being built into the wall. 

The living room paneling is going to be pulled down and replaced by light pine beadboard. The carpet will come up and the flooring will be the same as the flooring in the room pictured below.

Behind the red door is the stairwell to the basement.
More about that and what I plan to do with it later.

The Red Door.
I had a shower curtain made from one of my favorite photos of a place called Baxter Hollow.
I felt it would look neat as a full graphic...

The photo doesn't quite do it justice, but when a person looks into the bathroom it appears as if you are peering into Otter Creek minus the sounds of the water running over the rocks of course.

Our 'front' and back doors have matching storm doors and 'disappearing' screen doors that match the barn red shakes in the peaks.

The doors are all framed in now, but I didn't have a good photo of that.

Soon we move to the stair well, where I plan on putting a finish on the railings and getting started on organizing things.

For the time being we have started to move things out of the living room area in prep for us getting ready to work in there. Boards are cut to start putting in the chair rails in the dining area.

Morris has been supervising this work.

And he is happy to have most of the living room to lounge in again.

And so we are going!

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Still waiting

It is so hard to imagine how things changed for our house!

Right now we are on a holding pattern waiting for the trim and 2 interior doors to come in.

Meanwhile, I am still 'unpacking' the old kitchen and getting used to the 'new' kitchen.

Last night I was able to cook a very nice meal. I'd received Turnips from my 'up the hill' or Upstairs neighbor and sauteed them with an onion from our garden.

I made Southern Fried Chicken but did it in strips. I did it the old fashioned way and actually used my Kindle on the countertop to read and follow a recipe.

At least as much as I cared to follow it. I have a habit of modifying things to my own way.

This was a pretty big accomplishment for me. For the past 20 years I really did not like to cook in our incredibly small cramped kitchen. I found out what a luxury it was to be able to spread the items out!

We had supper in our eating area and then settled in on the porch. 
I'd picked flowers from our garden to add a bit of my 'touch'.

The next room that we have to work on is the eating area. The old dark siding that goes around the lower half of the wall is going.
It will be replaced with pine 'beadboard' which will be nice and light...and airy.

The carpet in the living room will be torn out and we'll be putting the same flooring as what we had installed in the downstairs bedroom to match.

Here is a snapshot of the sample...

It will be fun and very weathered looking.

The work outside in the yard has yet to begin. We'll be doing most of that ourselves. But the task looks pretty daunting right at the moment.

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Almost done!

Thursday the guys showed up and started to work as usual.

Another fellow and his small crew came and installed gutters and downspouts. They did their work and off they went. We now have gutters and downspouts to help direct the rainfall.

Kurt and his team went at the house with gusto.

They built the stair railing to the basement finished off the kitchen floor, and put my washer, dryer, and stove into place.

Suddenly I had a kitchen!

After they left for the long Holiday weekend I started to unpack things and put them away.

I was giddy with excitement to use my new washing machine. Wow, have washers come along way since in the past 20 years!

I got out my old wooden soda crate that I'd re-furbished and set it up on the counter to hold my spices.

It does its job well and even looks great! I want to keep the counter as free from clutter as possible. Of course the old Ritz can will hold coffee, and the golden chicken will have cookies!

The only thing left now is the trim around the windows and the new doors. One for the bathroom [currently we are using a sheet tacked to the wall] and one for the closet just opposite the bathroom.

We are still working on storage for the bathroom. Right now I have some wooden crates stacked for the storage of towels and toilet paper. I just got a little organizer to put in the top crate so I can start to unpack another tote of 'stuff'.

Now I have to figure out where I want to put things. The kitchen is SO huge compared to what I am used to.

Here are a couple of views of the kitchen.

This is the new door and the new entry/mud room/ kitchen area. The shot doesn't show the area where we will hang our coats and take off our boots.
We are still working on ideas for a bench/storage area.
My goal is to keep it clean and simple though.

The other half of the counter the door handle to the fridge is at my side.
For the first time since June 5th I made a nice supper and was surprised at how much room I had!
I was able to lay out plates on the counter and serve the meal up.
Do you recall what the old kitchen looked like?

Yes, I think I'd call this a great improvement.

This week I'll get some more shots of the other portions of construction. I'll get shots of the basement, the stairs, and more after I get the area cleaned up a bit.

My grand daughter has been staying with us this week and learning how to ride our mule Fred so I've been pretty busy. is the eating area.
Well, we haven't really been using it as we've been eating our meals out on the porch.

Plus, dear husband has to clean his 'stuff' off from the table. I took this shot after cleaning the kitchen floor. I have to figure out a good spot for the mop and floor 'duster' I use.

The cubby hole around the washer and dryer will get trim also with a folding door.

The trim and the rest of the work should be completed by next week, Friday.

I can say so far that this work has been worth all of the small growing pains that we had dealing with the construction.

We have the living room and the old part of the house to finish off now to make our little cottage look nice and new!