Friday, December 22, 2006

Inch by Inch

Just a few new pictures of the kitchen--turns out the pictures I took of the other rooms didn't come out very well. It's coming, inch by inch. At least we have a working kitchen now, and most of the cabinet trim is in. We'll do a big push to get boxes unpacked and pictures hung, etc, between Christmas and New Years. It's starting to feel like home!

Merry Christmas to everyone and all the best in the New Year!

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Home is where the couch is

Abi stayed at our dogwalker's house Thursday and Friday while we moved and got a bit settled. She was very excited to get home Friday night and was glad to see that amidst all the chaos, she still had her couch.

The couch and accompanying boxes are in our living room, and this is our one spare bedroom:

And kitchen. Note the lovely countertop.

I have to say, though, I've never been so excited to do laundry! Like the fancy wine glass?

I'm posting this from our local Starbucks, as we still don't have a phone line (that comes Wednesday).

As for further updates, we unexpectedly had to get a new refrigerator because we opened our old one Wednesday night to find a lovely colony of mold. So off to Sears we went, but the earliest it could be delivered was today. So we moved Thursday, but the rental company was nice enough to let us keep our frozen food in the freezer until today. The delivery men showed up at about 8:20 this morning, woo hoo! and it's currently being installed. Our lighting in the dining room is also being installed today and tomorrow. Someone comes on Tuesday to measure for the countertop and we're told we can have that in a week. Let's hope so! And Anita, we took your advice and called Empire Direct. They're coming coming tomorrow night to show us samples, so hopefully we'll be able to move our bedroom upstairs this week--that would be quite a relief!

And thanks to everyone who hoped I could find my socks. They were, of course, buried way in the back in the living room, but I got them just in time--it's gotten cold!

Monday, November 27, 2006

Less than a week!

This past weekend was a flurry of activity on our parts and the contractors'. My Mom and Dad came down to help out. Mom and I packed up a storm, being careful not to pack the pooch.

Dad and Rob built the rest of the fence, so that the pooch doesn't escape once we move in.

Here's a view of the driveway side of the house. There will be one more wooden step on the concrete slab at some point.

Here's a view into the new room and through to the kitchen from outside--you can see the Mexican Tile Green and a bit of the Honey Dew in the kitchen. As I post, Rob is at the house making sure that the cabinets are all installed correctly.

And here is the opposite view, from the living room, through the kitchen to the new room. At this point, the walls are fully painted, no spackling in sight.

We won't have a kitchen sink or dishwasher for a couple weeks because those won't be installed until the countertop comes, which can't be ordered until measurements on the installed cabinets are made, which should happen in the next day or so. But things are coming together better than I expected last week at this time. Keep sending good thoughts!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Maybe that 10 lbs IS water retention...

(refer to Anita's earlier comment).

I stopped by the house this afternoon and they were sanding away at the floors! They'll stain and varnish before they leave today! Yeah!

Of course, you never know what you'll find when you sand hardwood floors. What we found was a bunch of dog/cat pee marks, and I swear they weren't all from Abi and Emmy Lou. There were too many for them to bleach (read: they didn't want to and we didn't really want to slow them down so we bought their story. There were a lot of spots.), so we had to go with a slightly darker stain than we wanted, but it's still lighter than before.

They'll finish painting Friday and put the cabinets in over the weekend as well.

Now that there will be no more 4 am ruminations on my part about how they'd finish the floor while we were in the house, what ever in the world can I worry about now?

Monday, November 20, 2006

It's official!

We're moving back into our house on November 30.

But don't tell our contractor that--he thinks we're moving in on the 28th.

What we'll be moving into is another matter, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there.

Friday, November 17, 2006

The Jeep???

And here is the damage done to my vehicle by the contractor. He has admitted to it. He didn't realize he had hit it????? But he has said he will cover the damages. What will happen next, a lightening strike??? Bring it on Big Guy!!!!!!!! Guess I'm going to Hell with the rest of the republicans! Those F$#@$#$$ers"!!!!!!

Thursday, November 16, 2006

And we've got leverage...

Rob's taking too long to post the latest installment of our renovation saga so I just had to do it.

We met with our contractor last night at the house. Things are coming along, painting and trim are happening, but more on that later.

The contractor left and we were upstairs for awhile picking other paint colors. After finishing that, Rob was going to follow me in his car to Sears to get more paint, but he was taking a really long time to get in the car, fixing his side mirror and looking at the side of the car. He finally yelled to me to come look at something.

Long story short, our contractor backed into the side of Rob's jeep as he was leaving.

We couldn't make this stuff up if we tried.

Sunday, November 12, 2006

The Wrath of Erica

So here is a peek at the tiles in the laundry room floor:

And a peek at the floor tiles in the downstairs bathroom:

And they painted the trim and siding on the outside of the house:

Note how I'm NOT giving you a peek at anyone working on the house on Sunday when we stopped by after being at my parents' for the weekend.

Keep in mind that they have always worked on Sunday throughout this entire project. Keep in mind that we need to move in by November 30 because we've given notice and there is a new renter moving in Dec. 1. And remember that our house is really not anywhere near a point where we can move in and be vaguely comfortable.

So you can imagine how high my blood pressure got at about 2:30 this afternoon when we pulled up to the house and there was NO ONE THERE.

And so I called our contractor, which I have only done once or twice before because I'm not always as diplomatic or as sweet or as patient as one might want in these situations.

He said the workers had taken the day off.

I refrained from blowing a gasket, but informed him that was inexcusable, that he'd better get his butt in gear because we needed to move in Thanksgiving weekend, and that we continued to be disappointed by the progress on this project. He said that he would start moving in fast forward, to which I said that he should have done that months ago.

I'm hoping that he feels good and guilty now. We shall see.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

The Cabinets!

This is what you get when the contractor is behind schedule. An overlap of disciplines! The drywall isn't done and they are already installing the cabinets. If they damage them, they will end up replacing!! Anyway, here they are. At least things are moving forward, even though some of the cabinets have some damage and need to be replaced!

Wednesday, November 01, 2006


Can you believe it, they are actually getting more done! Here are some more shots of the drywall progress. The bamboo flooring is also being installed in the kitchen. Douglas fir has been purchased for the window trim and base. They have also been working on some of the outside landscaping issues. They bricked out an entry into the crawl space, and installed a french drain pipe at the garage. We have given notice to our property agent that we will move out of the rental by the end of Novemeber. The pressure is on the contractor, otherwise we will be living in our cars!!

Thursday, October 26, 2006


Yes it is true that they are actually drywalling! since we passed inspection it is now full steam ahead. Let's hope they don't run out of steam! As you can see, they also have the new furnace and tankless water heater installed. If this keeps up, maybe we will actually get in by Thanksgiving! I'm not getting my hopes up.

Monday, October 23, 2006


I guess our contractor took pictures of some good joists because we passed our structural and electrical inspection! So now he should be able to get rolling.

Saturday, October 21, 2006

The alternate universe of home inspectors

So yesterday was supposed to be our electric and structural inspection and, in fact, the inspector did come. Apparently what happened (I wasn't there, which is probably a good thing), was the inspector came and saw that our addition was raised more than 35 inches above the ground. Because of that he needed to inspect the joists. So to do that he asked our contractor to rip up the floor.

Did I mention that we have a fully accessible crawl space under the addition, from which the joists are fully visible?

Our contractor (thankfully) mentioned that the floor is all tongue-and-groove, so ripping up one section of it would threaten the structural integrity of the entire floor.

Upon which, the inspector happily went into the crawl space to look at the joists, right?


He told our contractor to take pictures of the joists and he'd be back on Monday to look at the pictures.

Could I make this up?

So on Monday he'll be back to look at photos of the joists and hopefully we'll be on our merry way. Or perhaps the inspector will want to see photos of our electric wiring as well. Stay tuned.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Reality or a pipe dream, you decide.

Our contractor is still telling us he can have us in the house by Nov 1. I've given up holding my breath long ago, but I would certainly be pleasantly surprised if this really happened.

We passed our gas and water inspections, electric will hopefully be next week and will hopefully go well, since walls can't be put up until that is okayed.

Good-vibe-sending, crossed fingers, incantations and the like continue to be appreciated.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Siding at Last!

Here is the siding, finally! Though the interior is still dragging. The completed fence is shown here as well. Now if we can just get the ductwork completely installed, we can get the inspection overwith, hopefully painlessly!

Thursday, September 21, 2006

We have siding!

I don't have pictures at the moment, but there is siding on most of the house! Yeah! We'll post new pics soon!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Putting "labor" in Labor Day

No rest for us down here in Silver Spring this Labor Day week! My dad came down and Geoff came over to help Rob build a new fence for Abi. Not even Ernesto could stop them. Here they are starting to set the posts.

Here's the first meal in the new dining room!

Soon they put the first slats on the fence...

By the end of Sunday, they were almost finished.

And what was I doing while all this was going on? I was culling. I ruthlessly went through things we had stored in the eaves, oh, since we first moved in. Ahhh...a clean slate!

And today, Monday, Carlos was there installing HVAC ducts. Yeah!

posted by Abi's mom from Abi's dad's computer

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Old meets New

Here are two views, one looking into the new addition from the living room. The other is looking through the kitchen into the living from the new space. Since the exterior doors are installed the space is completely opened between the old and new.

New Cabinets

So, finally for Anita, here are two photos of the cherry cabinets. I had a little more room to get to the boxes in the living room. Right now they expect to install the cabinets by the end of September.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

and yes....continued work!

Here are the new windows in the upstairs bathroom, and the new exterior doors. We seem to be on our way! The projected substantial completion is september 30. I Think we won't be in until mid-October, but we'll see? Maybe in time for Erica's birthday?!?

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Thank God!!!!!!!!!!!

They really have been installed! At least most of them. The rest should be done tomorrow. The duct work is still behind schedule though.

Will miracles never cease?!

Our windows arrived on time and they're being installed as we speak! I don't have pictures yet, but I'm so excited that I just had to pass along the news!

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Talk about dragging out a task! The roof is 99% complete! They still have to cap the ridges, but at least the whole roof is covered! The best news is that our windows will be delivered monday! I'll believe it when I see it. We might actually get completely enclosed by the end of this coming week!

Saturday, August 12, 2006

The gutted kitchen is just calling out for all those new cabinets in boxes sitting in the living room!

Well as of yesterday they have about 50% of the shingles on. Doing the math, I think that translates to about 10 shingles per day?!? seems like it's been taking them forever on the roof! They've been going at it for over a week and it really only should have taken a day!!!!! I can't kill anyone because I'm supposed to be the good cop! Erica is the bad cop! Boy, will they be in for it if I let her loose!