Tuesday, April 20, 2010

The Move

Big news: We emptied everything out of our storage unit.
Bigger news: We moved everything from our storage unit into our home!!!!

Alan, Kacey, Busha, Brett & I moved everything out of our storage unit in two trips, in about an hour. They were a huge help! Teamwork makes the dream work. Finally...4 1/2 months after our arrival in Ashland, our stuff is in its new home. What a great feeling.

It was like getting married all over again, in that it seemed like we were inundated with fabulous wedding gifts! It was such fun rediscovering our dishes and kitchen goodies. I savored the emptying of the Fiestaware box, as I gently placed all our fun vintage pieces on the shelves. Color!!! (Note: Brett does not quite get the whole Fiestaware infatuation, but is being a very good sport about it. He does not understand why we would keep dishes like that solely to look at, or use on a very rare occasion. I understand where he's coming from, BUT do you see those colors?!? That's the "don't use" section, but next to the kitchen sink is a whole other array of wonderful colors that can be used every day. More color!!)

This is a sneak peak into the room that's been exploded in. We managed to get through all of our boxes, mind you. Now it's just a matter of finding a home for all the things in said boxes. What fun!!
We have lots and lots to do in the way of organization, but the point is that we have moved our things in!! Notice that I did not say that we have moved in, however, because we (mainly I) are not moving in until we have hot water. We are awaiting our final approval from the city, which will hopefully happen this week. Fingers crossed!!!

Oh, yeah. I wanted to include the lovely tree we have had the pleasure of watching bloom this spring. Our yard is a disaster zone and gives me a headache just looking at it, but this apple tree on the other hand, makes me so happy! I will be even happier if it produces fruit. Don't mind the ladder, or the explosion of brush and dirt...but check out those beautiful pink/white blossoms! Spring has sprung in Southern Oregon.


Brett and I decided to add a fun element to our hall and office flooring by painting black checks. It was a slightly tedious project, simply marking, then taping, then painting. I was torn on whether to go tonal with the checks, or high contrast. In the end I decided that I've always really loved the classic vintage look of black and white flooring, so why not just go for it? The checks are most definitely not perfect, but luckily neither of us are perfectionists. We intended to get a homespun look, and it's safe to say we were successful. This was totally experimental because we have no idea how the paint will hold up. Is it a bad sign that we are able to use our fingernails to scratch paint off? Hmm...yet again we were reminded why it would have been a good idea to prime the squares first. Oh, well! C'est la vie!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Big Weekend: Part Deux

Sunday served as a continuation of much progress made. Chuck and Brett led the charge. It was a huge help having Chuck yesterday. He and Brett were able to crank out a lot of stuff. Unfortunately I was busy putzing around making messes, so I didn't capture as much on camera as I probably should have. Brett & Chuck completed the siding, wired and hung the exterior lights, finished the interior electrical panel, among other things. We crossed off several more items from our "to do list".

Don't be fooled by this photo, because though it appears that Busha is sitting down on the job, it is a rare moment that she's just hanging out. It was too cute a shot to pass up--Busha just poking her head in through the window, surveying the scene. I assure you that she quickly got back to whatever cleaning she was surely doing.
I replaced a big section of brick on our patio yesterday. It's pretty fun reclaiming our patio from the crazed construction zone. Soon enough we'll be lounging out there on furniture, sipping some cold bevies...staring at our unending piles of brush that need to be chipped and hauled out. But the point is that soon we'll be sitting on our patio! Like, sitting. On furniture.

Anyway, Busha was helping to fill in the gaps of my ill-placed bricks. Teamwork makes the dream work, you know? (Please take note of the newly hung patio lights, thanks to Brett and Chuck! Also, any of you electric-loving people may like to take note of our freshly installed and wired bubble boxes. Ooooh! I just learned what a bubble box is, and wow, is that cool.)

While Brett & Chuck were being oh-so-productive, I was doing what I do best: making mud pies. One may think that fresh paint should be maintained, preserving the cleanness of the finish. Au contraire! As though pink paint doesn't look bad enough, I want you to imagine old nasty pink paint covering the majority of the house, mixed with sparkling new pink paint on one side and along the bottom row of siding in the front. Not pretty. Not pretty at all. That's where I came in, quickly remedying that!

It's as good as...old! Oh, how beautiful! I assure you there IS a method to my madness.

Another notable thing as a result of yesterday is that we have our first pieces of FURNITURE. Inside! Here's evidence. My sweet husband, kicking back in his long johns, wool socks, and green vans. He most certainly is a fashion statement. But beyond his apparel, please take note of what he is kicking back on.
Elation fills me as I sit atop our new-to-us red striped couch. Oh my! This is just the beginning. It's the smallest things that bring such joy, I tell you.

Big Big BIG Weekend

Chip and Laura have left us. Sniff, sniff. They are currently traveling with their fifth wheel in tow, accompanied by the John & Linda Holton and their motor home. They will be wreaking havoc in the western region for the next 3-4 weeks. Before they left on Friday, however, the Dream Team totally rallied, for which we are extremely grateful. What we have discovered in the process of this remodel is that the help of family and friends is an incredible gift. The little and big amounts of time that people have offered through this process has been extremely appreciated.

Laura and Linda tackled the blind installation, and looked pretty B.A. during the process.
Busha was busy cleaning the porch, an unending job, while Linda moved piles and lumber to the basement. We have an inspection coming up, for which we must have a clean, construction-free zone, meaning that there was much cleaning that needed to be done.
John & Chip tackled laying the Ikea laminate flooring in the hallway and office . They were masters by the end, though they wondered if there was a product for filling in gaps in laminate flooring, suggesting that their installation was under par. I will have you know that they did a fine job, and it looks great!
Brett would like to state, for the record, that though he looks very involved in this process, and like he's actually showing John & Chip a thing or two, this was the only time he touched the flooring. The camera lies!
Busha, as always, was beyond helpful this entire weekend. She works tirelessly, and runs circles around the average human...until 2pm at least:)
Then this is when things really started breaking down. The Martini Twins made a guest appearance, and Linda & Laura never were to return again. They were having way too much fun. Clearly, they were gearing up for their road trip.
The Sirens were spotted again, trying to lure the others into their trap. Brett was able to resist temptation...just barely.
This is a view of the kitchen, not to be confused with our toolshed/workshop, though we've been using it as such. Take note of the newly hung Ikea pendants! Anyway, this is how it looked on Thursday when we had the flurry of workers.
This is what it looked like when I got my hands on it on Saturday. I eagerly ripped up the paper, mopped the floors (oh, they are still beautiful!!!), and Busha was the master organizer/tool-mover.

This was one of Brett's big projects: replacing the siding on the side of our house. He did such a great job...almost too nice of a job. It looks way nicer than our other siding. He painted it to match the house on Saturday, though it seriously pained me to voluntarily add more pink. Ugh! When the time (and funds) comes to re-roof, then we will replace the pink. For now, we are stuck with our salmony-rose-peach-fleshy colored paint. Oh, joy.
All in all, this weekend was HUGE. Thinking back to Thursday we are extremely encouraged to know all that was accomplished. We just have to finish some minor electrical work in the main part of the house, hang a pendant and chandelier, get a city approval (minor, or not so minor detail), and move in. We will be living in the main part of the house for a while, because the master bed, bath, and office have taken a backseat. Having the laminate completed, though, enables us to put the remaining trim up in the hall and office, and while we're at it we can put it up in the master prior to carpet installation. The master bathroom is the least of our concerns at this point, and will probably be a project for the next few weeks.

Our house is looking great. Thank you, thank you to Chip, Laura & Busha for your incessant work. Thank you John & Linda for your incredible help on Friday, even though you were technically on vacation. Thank you Uncle Chuck for your mad skills. Thank you to everyone who has lent a hand to the fixing-up of our little home. We are truly blessed.

(anyone know why certain sections are underlined? I couldn't figure out how to remove it)

Sunday, April 4, 2010

This week was big. Yesterday was big. Our 10 hour Saturday aided in getting us closer and closer to moving in. We have a fully functioning bathroom. Brett and Chip installed the pedestal sink, as well as the shower/tub fixture; the trim has been painted, the paint touched up. The things remaining to be done for our guest bathroom to be called "finished" are: the vanity light needs to be installed, the mirror hung, the shower curtain and rod put in place, and that's it! This is a big victory: a nearly completed room.

One of B's projects yesterday (projected to be a one hour project, which took...umm...slightly longer) was to build a box for our range. When we had our counters built 3" higher than standard, we failed to remember that our appliances would not be taller than normal. Not a problem. Brett built a sweet box beneath the range, so it looks perfect!
Then came the microwave install. Yet another more-problematic-than-anticipated scenario. All went well in the end, but it was definitely a bit more involved.
It's a family affair...
Good thing Laura was there to support the weight of the microwave.

Check out our tape-free zone, with appliances in place and all!

At the start of this post, I said that yesterday was big. It absolutely was in my world of painting. Busha and Laura volunteered their painting services for several hours yesterday. Oh, my. I see the light at the end of the tunnel, people! The cabinets are dun-dun-dun-DONE! Busha and Laura were incredible trim maskers and painters. What seemed like an unending, daunting chore became totally manageable. Having two extra sets of hands was heavenly. The living room trim is DONE, kitchen trim DONE, guest bath trim DONE, guest bed trim and wainscoting DONE. Most everything has been caulked, and I'd say that 80-90% of the painting is behind us. What an incredible feeling.

This photo was taken on Friday, when I felt smack dab in the middle of a project unending.
This was taken yesterday toward the end of a successful day of painting. Oh, how my mood had changed.

Here's a sneak peak at the hutch. We decided to paint the bottom half a more fun, bold color. I distressed it, as can be seen by clicking on the image, and will be adding some fun vintagey knobs soon.
On the side of our pantry door we painted with chalkboard chalk. Aside from nearly walking into the cabinet because I thought it was a door, it's a fun addition that we're excited about.

All for now. Happy Easter! We are off to lounge, and really take advantage of this food-induced coma we find ourselves in.