Cabinets Made, Trim Finished, and Floors Installed!

Never give up on a dream just because of the time it will take to accomplish it. The time will pass anyway. ~Earl Nightingale

First for the GREAT news . . . Bill finished making and assembling the cabinets!!! What a long and stressful process. He officially finished them on Sunday, March 30th.

He started building the big pantry cabinet in the laundry room. With Zach’s help on March 25, Bill glued the pieces together and they used all the big clamps Bill had. Zach said he never dreamed they would use that many.

The big pantry cabinet all clamped up.

The big pantry cabinet all clamped up.

Bill moved to putting the wall corner cabinet together later that week. This cabinet has been a lot of work figuring out all the shelves and backs.

The wall corner cabinet

The wall corner cabinet

He finished it on March 28. This is very tall upper cabinet. I think it’s 48 inches.

Wall corner cabinet

Wall corner cabinet

Here is the inspiration photo which spawned the idea for the corner cabinet. The doors for our cabinet will be hinged together like the inspiration cabinet. I spend way too much time on houzz.com!

After this cabinet was done, Bill sanded all the cabinet drawers and stamped them prior to the painters applying a poly finish.

Stacks of drawers

Stacks of drawers

Drawers stamped

Drawers stamped

Drawers all lined up after having a poly spray

Drawers all lined up after having a poly spray

Then Bill finished the last cabinet – the big pantry.

Finishing up the pantry cabinet

Finishing up the pantry cabinet

All done with toe kick!

All done with toe kick!

Now it was up to the painters to get busy staining and painting cabinets. We thought they would show up on Monday, March 24. But they didn’t. Bill had scheduled the hardwood floors to be installed the following Monday – March 31. The painters had to get done in the house so the floors could be laid. The big spraying tent had to be removed in the dining/kitchen area, too. But the painters needed to do more spraying before it came down. Bill called Mark the painter Monday afternoon to tell him he had to be done in the house by Friday. He said they would be there the next day. But, Tuesday came and went and no painters. Grrrrr!

Mark and Shayna finally came on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, March 26-28, and worked long days.

Interior doors drying after a poly spray

Interior doors drying after a poly spray

Mark and Shayna sanding a door

Mark and Shayna sanding a door

Mark & Shayna stacked all the trim pieces in the garage and covered them

Mark & Shayna stacked all the trim pieces in the garage and covered them

Cabinet doors and drawer fronts got another sanding and final spray

Cabinet doors and drawer fronts got another sanding and final spray

Island pieces and the corner cabinet doors all finished

Island pieces and the corner cabinet doors all finished

Interior doors all done. The finish is so soft and smooth.

Interior doors all done. The finish is so soft and smooth.

Microwave/wall oven cabinet sanded and given final spray

Microwave/wall oven cabinet sanded and given final spray

Refrigerator cabinet finished!

Refrigerator cabinet finished!

Island ends still need one more coat of poly on the sides

Island ends still need one more coat of poly on the sides

By late Friday, Mark and Shayna got all the spraying done and everything stacked and put in the bedrooms or garage. Unfortunately, the one thing I wanted done before the hardwood floors were installed – painting the family room – did not get done. Boo!

Bill and I worked down at the house last weekend reorganizing the garage, taking down the spray booth, and sweeping and vacuuming the floors. We stacked all the drawers in the bump-out area of the garage, putting Styrofoam between to protect them. We moved the dishwasher and trash compactor into the utilities area. Bill moved the extra tile boxes in that area, too. Those things were so heavy I couldn’t budge them. I don’t know how Bill picked them up. Then we moved the painter’s saw horses and all his empty cans of stain and paint and buckets and everything else that belonged to him all to one side of the garage. We moved all the laundry cabinets in one area of the garage along with all the laundry cabinet doors. This way Mark and Shayna could work out of the garage – except for the big pantry cabinet, which he said they would paint in the laundry room.

Garage all ready for the painters

Garage all ready for the painters

After we had the garage organized we moved into the house. We picked up all the cardboard that the painters used and either trashed or saved it depending on the condition. Then I started sweeping. This is my least favorite thing to do since it kills my back. I popped some Extra Strength Tylenol and swept. Bill followed behind and vacuumed. Bill spent many more hours vacuuming than I did sweeping. This was the same scene as when we cleaned up after drywall – just not has much dust. See the area where Bill is standing. That is poly residue. Bill says our floor is now sealed! Seeing how much poly saturated the sub floor was reassurance that the spray booth was a good thing. I can’t imagine what our walls and windows and doors would have looked like if they had not used the booth!

Bill vacuuming

Bill vacuuming

Mark suggested that we leave the two large kitchen cabinets in the family room and ask the hardwood floor installers if they could move them from one area to another after they installed a section.

Big kitchen cabinets

Big kitchen cabinets

Bright and early Monday, March 31, the hardwood floor installers came and set up shop with their saw in the garage. Hmmmm. I guess Mark and Shayna wouldn’t be able to work on cabinets in there with all that sawdust. One of the guys finished installing the tile in the laundry room (they had run out of tile several weeks ago). I didn’t take a picture of the finished floor.

First row of hardwoods installed

First row of hardwoods going in

Mark and Shayna arrived and since it was a warm sunny day Mark told Bill he thought he’d spray the painted cabinets outdoors. It was a warm sunny day but it was also windy! Bill told Mark that he didn’t think it would be a good idea in case the paint would get all over the cars and our house and pole barn. So, instead Mark and Shayna worked Monday and Tuesday caulking the exterior of the house.

Caulking the exterior

Caulking the exterior

In the meantime, the floors were going in nicely.

Main hallway

Main hallway looking toward the family room

Master bedroom hallway looking toward the main hallway

Master bedroom hallway looking toward the main hallway

By noon on Tuesday, April 1, the installers had a good part done and said they would be finished Wednesday morning.

Installers taking a lunch break. Looking toward the family room from the kitchen/dining area

Installers taking a lunch break. Looking toward the family room from the kitchen/dining area

Looking from the family room toward the kitchen and the laundry room through the doorway

Looking from the family room toward the kitchen and the laundry room through the doorway

Tuesday Mark told Bill that since it was going to rain the next two days, they would be back on Friday. Meanwhile the floor guys came Wednesday and finished up.

Family room floors installed

Family room floors installed

Dining area done

Dining area done

Wednesday afternoon, Bill started covering the floors with leftover housewrap and cardboard. He used hardboard panels in areas of high traffic. A friend of mine had used the hardboard panels when he was renovating his kitchen. He suggested they worked well when trying to move in appliances without scratching up the floors. Thanks, Keith, for the idea. Bill and I worked on covering the floors all day Thursday.

Covering the floors

Covering the floors with housewrap (blue) and cardboard boxes

Those moving boxes sure came in handy!

Those moving boxes sure came in handy!

Hardboard panels lined the kitchen walls

Hardboard panels lined the kitchen walls

Hardboard panels line the high traffic areas

Hardboard panels line the high traffic areas

Laundry floor covered

Laundry floor covered

Used every box we had!

Used every box we had!

Bill swept the sawdust out of the garage and text Mark that we were ready for them to paint the family room and paint and stain the rest of the cabinets. Mark said they’d be here the next day (Friday).

Bill got a call earlier in the week from our electrician and he said he would be out one day to install our meter. Bill was going out-of-town on Friday so he asked me to check on the contractors the next day.

We had storms all day Thursday and by 5:00 pm, this is what Jill and Jim’s driveway looked like.

Flooded driveway

Flooded driveway

This is going toward Jill and Jim’s house. Our property is to the right of the their driveway. Thank goodness all of our houses are situated up from this area. And, the good news is we didn’t have any leaks in the house from the 7-9 inches of rain we got between Thursday and Friday.

I went down to the house around 9:30 that morning and no painters! I left a note in the garage to call me if the electrician came. I never got a phone call and when I came down before picking the grandkids up from the bus stop, I saw this:

Big 'ol electric meter installed!

Big ‘ol electric meter installed!

Here are the inside electric panels in the laundry room. There are two outlets coming out from them I guess we will eventually be able to use when the power is turned on. We have a cabinet that will set below these panels. We were going to put a TV on that cabinet as my computer area is right across from it. We’re hoping the TV will hide those ugly panels.

Electric panels

Electric panels

I went into the garage and found my note had fallen behind one of the cabinets. I guess Bill will have to call the electrician to find out what’s up. And no surprise, the painters never showed up.

Timeline of what’s to come:

•Mark and Shayna need to finish the cabinets and paint the family room before we can bring in the trim carpenter. I figure the painters have two weeks of work left – if they show up most week days. After that, they can move to the exterior of the house and start painting.

•Jim said Allen is supposed to be here this week to install our septic.

•Our bathroom vanities, bathroom storage cabinets, and window seats are being delivered Monday, April 7.

•After the cabinets are painted and stained, Bill will install all the slides and the Rev-A-Shelf items.

•After exterior of house is painted, the gutters will be installed.

•Once the trim carpenter installs all the cabinets, vanities, window seats, interior doors, baseboards, and all the interior trim and beams, we can bring in granite people.

•I guess Bill will install all the door handles – another PITA job.

•After granite (which includes our sinks and bathroom vanities) is installed, plumber can come and hook everything up and install stuff. Lots of plumbing to be installed in the pole barn, too!

•Electrician and gas will be hooked up. Run electric to pole barn.

•HVAC and digging for geothermal will be installed.

•Electrican will install all our light fixtures and fans (not sure when that happens).

•Concrete for back patio and driveway laid (not sure when that happens).

•Glass shower door is installed.

•We’ll work on closet systems.

•Painters come back and put another coat of paint on everything inside and do any staining touch-ups.

•Carpet is installed.

•Final grading and Landscaping.

•Final clean (top to bottom).

•Move in.

Whew! There is still a lot to happen before moving in. We hope to be in sometime in May. Time will tell.

 

 

 

 

Dust in the wind . . . and in every nook and cranny, too!

When your dreams turn to dust, vacuum. ~Author unknown

Yes, there is dust, dust, and more drywall dust in our house. Not sure why we didn’t sub out the cleaning of drywall dust. It’s bad. And, it’s not a fun job getting rid of it.

Tuesday, January 28, I got an email from Mark from Fehrenbacher Wood Specialties that our project was ready to ship. He asked if the weather had slowed any of our contractors down. He said he could hold our trim, beams, and interior doors for a little while if we needed him to do that. “Yes, please!” I quickly replied to him.

Bill immediately got on the phone and called Bart, the drywall owner, and told him they needed to be out of the house by Monday, Feb. 3. That did the trick. The mudders came Wednesday and Thursday. We had yet another drywall crew who came and worked all day Friday to do the final sanding in the house. The siding crew worked Wednesday and they were getting more and more siding out of the garage. For some reason the mudders only did a bit in the garage and told Bill they needed a different tool to mud the garage. Bill just shook his head. Not sure what tool they would need special! ❓ Drywall is drywall, right? 🙄 Who knows when they’ll come back to finish the garage.

Okay, back to the drywall dust. Cleaning this drywall dust and excess mud was something else. I do not know if what we did is helpful to anyone else or not. I don’t know if there was anything that would have been a better or faster method. All I know is what we did. It appears to have worked out okay so far. Here are the steps we took.

First Bill took a large dust mop and ran it over the walls and whatever ceilings he could reach. Then I swept each room into mini drywall mud and dust piles.

Here’s what it looked like throughout the house minus all the junk they threw in the corners or anywhere they pleased which I picked up first. (Don’t get me started on all the rotten banana peels, frozen dinner packets, bottles and cans, and empty sauce and ketchup packets, etc. I threw away in the big trash can that was sitting right in the middle of the family room for their use!)

Drywall dust, excess mud, and debris

Drywall dust, excess mud, and debris

Here is what it looked liked after I swept mini piles of debris and dust. Notice that it doesn’t even look like I swept the dust! I used three different brooms and still got the same results.

Piles of dust and excess drywall mud

Piles of dust and excess drywall mud

Lots and lots of drywall dust

Lots and lots of drywall dust

Little difference after sweeping

Little difference after sweeping

I went back throughout the house and swept the piles into our snow shovel which we used as a dust pan and then into the trash can. We bought drywall dust filters for the shop vac. Highly recommend those. I think Jill and Jim messed up their shop vac during this phase of their build.

Bill then vacuumed all the window sills, around all the corners, and all the openings for light fixtures or outlets. Then, he vacuumed the laundry, kitchen/dining and family room floors with the shop vac. He’s on his second shop vac filter. He may have to buy another one to finish the bedrooms and baths floors today. I tried to help out by vacuuming, but that’s when my back gave out for good! Ouch!!!

Like the video, the pic below shows the bottom part AFTER I had swept and picked up with a broom and the snow shovel. The top part shows after Bill swept with the Shop Vac. Bill & I both agree that the process is a back breaker.

Before and after vacuuming with Shop Vac

Before and after vacuuming with Shop Vac

Laundry Room on top (vacuumed), kitchen on bottom (not vacuumed)

Laundry Room on top (vacuumed), kitchen on bottom (not vacuumed)

As I sit here nursing my back, Bill is down at the house vacuuming the rest of the house . I’ve already emailed Mark at Fehrenbacher to let him know he can deliver the trim package anytime. Yay!

The other good news this week is that the siding guys finished up yesterday!

The front Hardie cement board installed on the front of the house

The Hardie cement board installed on the front of the house

Now, remember, this is NOT the color that the siding will be. Hopefully, we are aiming for the color to be the same as the clay-type color (official name – Norwegian Wood) of the soffits and fascia (shown on the gables).

West side of the house installed

West side of the house installed

Back of the house siding all installed

Back of the house siding all installed

Looks like they knocked off the stone ledgecap on the corner. Oops, that shouldn't have fallen off!

Looks like they knocked off the stone ledgecap on the corner. Oops, that shouldn’t have fallen off!

So, while the guys were working on the front porch area, Bill decided he did not want the fascia material on the porch ceiling. He said he would prefer having tongue and groove beadboard.

Sample of beadboard

Sample of beadboard

So, Bill had the siding guys install osb on the porch ceiling.

mdf on porch ceiling

mdf on porch ceiling

Yesterday morning, Bill and I went to Menards and bought pine beadboard. We are going to have the painter stain it to match the front door (mahogany) and we’ll have the trim carpenter install it. I’m excited! I’ve always liked the look of the stained beadboard (never told Bill that) and would never dream to ask for that on the porch. I’m so glad Bill suggested it!

Friday the siding guys started and finished the installation of the shakes in the gables. They are Certainteed Cedar Impressions 9″ Double Split Edge Staggered Shakes in Sable Brown. So happy with the looks of them.

The first gable with the shakes going up

The first gable with the shakes going up

Two gables done

Two gables done

All three gables in the front complete

All three gables in the front complete

Close-up of shakes in the gable

Close-up of the shakes in the gable

And, the back all done!

And, the back all done!

Close-up of the back

Close-up of the back

Here’s a view of our house and pole barn driving from Jill and Jill’s house. You can see Jim and Joan’s red barn to the left of our pole barn.

View of our house driving from Jill and Jim's

View of our house driving from Jill and Jim’s

View of pole and house

View of pole barn and house

The guys started working on the columns and Bill had me approve the height before they built the second one. Originally, we were going to have larger columns, but I felt they were going to take over the front porch. I wanted to have room to maybe put a chair and table or flower pots or whatever. If we went with the larger columns, I think that is all you would see. So, back to houzz.com to look at columns – sizes and shapes. So, this is the size I chose.

Column being built

Column being built

Wood post on top of column stone cap

Wood post on top of column stone cap

The guys finished up building the columns on Saturday and covered the wooden posts with the wood grain cement board trim. The stone guys will stone the columns on their next trip back here. We’re going to have the painter paint the posts in the bronze color.

Columns on the front porch

Columns on the front porch

Bill is going to call Rick, the stone guy, either this evening or tomorrow and tell him that we are ready for them to finish the exterior stone work and to begin stoning the fireplace surround. I can’t wait to see if the fireplace surround design I created on my computer will look okay. I’m no designer. Never done anything like this before. We’ll see how close they come to this.

My fireplace design

My fireplace design

Since the weather was so cold on Monday and Tuesday last week and Bill could not work on the cabinets, we decided to get some other things accomplished. On Monday Bill and I made a trip to a store called Finders Keepers in Princeton. We had seen a carved top table in that store once and we thought maybe it could work for the other side of our entryway when you came in from the garage. I was looking for something we could use to put mail, store keys, set land-line phone (if we decide on that) and maybe where we could plug-in our cell phones and iPad. I had already decided I wanted to put several hooks on the short wall where I could hang my purse and maybe a jacket. We ended up finding a unique antique desk with a drop-down top. Bill is going to strip it and stain it a darker stain so it will blend in with the new chest we purchased for the other side of the entry. I’ve also convinced him to cut off the mirror at the top. He’s not happy about that, but I don’t like it. He said he could use his router and put a nice edge on the back to match the edge on the front. It also has a large drawer under the drop down section.

Antique desk

Antique desk

View with the top dropped down

View with the top dropped down

What I mainly like about the piece is its smaller size and it basically has all the functions we need for the space. Not a big fan of oak but with a darker stain, I think it will be perfect!

Tuesday, Bill and I had an appointment with Brian at BK Flooring to finalize our flooring and tile selections. We made two changes. Bill liked the tile color I had selected for the hall bathroom better than the one I had selected for the master bathroom. So, long story short, I ended up making the tile in both bathrooms the same. It really wasn’t a big deal. The spare bathroom only has tile on the floor. It’s not that big a room. The master bath has tile on the floor and a tiled shower with a bench. We are using four different tile shapes and sizes in the shower/bench and will use the same tile on the floor as the spare bathroom. The cost for the tile didn’t change since it was just a matter of color change.

However, the change did involve our granite choice. So, I had to call Lee, granite guy in Indy area, send him an update of our vanity drawings and get a quote for the Golden Sand granite for the master bathroom vanities (same as what we were using for spare bathroom). You might know the Golden Sand was a higher grade granite than the one I originally had picked out for the master bathroom. I had Lee send me pictures of other granites that would be in the same price range, but the colors were off. I had the Golden Sand sample piece and it had specks of green in it which I liked so we decided we knew it blended in well and I didn’t want to take a chance on something I might not like later.

Here’s what the master bath mood board looks like.

Master Bath Mood Board

Master Bath Mood Board

The second change was the flooring for the large laundry/pantry/computer room. We decided to go with Congoleum Duraceramic Dimensions Blend 12×24 Luxury Vinyl. We are not going to use grout in-between the tiles. I was looking for something warmer and softer to stand on versus ceramic tile. Plus, it’s a laundry room!

12x24 luxury vinyl

12×24 luxury vinyl

Oh and Bill has started cutting wood for our kitchen island. He decided he wanted to glue up the kitchen doors in the house after the drywallers were done. So until that happened, he started on the island. Here are the views of what we designed. Bill has some ideas of how he is going to frame it all out.

As soon as our trim package has been delivered, we will call the painter and see how soon he can begin staining and painting.

So, another busy week.

Darn that Punxsutawney Phil and his prediction. I guess we’ll just plug along with this crazy winter weather. However, since we have the exterior of the house almost done, maybe we will be okay and concentrate on the inside.

Building During Winter Months . . . Brrrrr!

funny-picture-winter-favorite-thing-seasonMost people who really know me, know that I’m not a fan of winter. And, this winter . . . yeah, I’m ready for warmer weather. But, looking at one positive, when the temperature is below freezing, the ground is solid and we don’t have to worry about all the mud that is everywhere around the construction site and the mud that finds its way into the house, on our clothes, on our shoes, and then tracked into our car and truck.

Sorry for the delay in writing a blog post. What with the holidays, snow, Arctic cold temperatures, flu, and winter blues, I just didn’t have the energy or excitement I usually do to write the last several weeks. But, I’ve been getting phone calls, texts, Facebook messages, and emails from family and friends asking what was going on with us and the house. Okay – I’ll try and get out of my winter funk and get you caught up.

Remember that mold problem in the crawl space? Well, Todd got most of the sealing done the week before Christmas. We have not seen or heard from him since then! Bye bye, Todd. Will we ever see you again? 😕 Since the manual application of spraying Borax and scrubbing it over the mold was taking so long and Todd was gone, Bill did some research and decided to rent this from Home Depot the weekend after Christmas.

Mold Fogger

Mold Fogger

It took several hours to fog four gallons of the Mold Control liquid under the house. By fogging the liquid, it reaches all the nooks and crannies, sticks and when it dries, it is supposed to destroy the mold and prevent it from coming back. I hope so.

December 30, we received a big delivery of drywall.

Drywall delivery!

Drywall delivery!

Crane picking up the drywall

Crane picking up the drywall

New Year’s Eve day, we had three different crews working on the house: drywall hanging crew, stone crew, and insulation crew.

The insulation guys sprayed foam around the seal plate in the crawl space. I didn’t get a picture of the insulation crew but they looked like this after crawling out.

Insulation guy

Insulation guy

The stone guys started on our chimney first. They used scaffolding and worked as a good team. They actually worked New Year’s Day, too, because snow and cold temps were predicted for the rest of the week.

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The stone crew is one of our favorite bunch of guys. They are friendly, love to show you their work, very appreciative when I tell them what a great job they are doing and how well I like it, and fun to be around. I think they like us, too. They always wave when I drive out of Jill and Jim’s driveway. But, they probably like us the most because we decided to add more stone to the house! 😀 More on that later.

Then, there was the drywall hanging crew. Definitely the hardest crew to get along with so far and the messiest. Granted the house was cold inside. We couldn’t do anything to heat it until they installed the sheets of drywall on the ceiling and then we could have the insulation crew come back and blow the insulation into the attic. If we turned on the portable electric furnace without the ceilings installed and insulation, the heat would have gone right up through the roof. So, the drywall crew complained and complained to Bill about lots of things. They only worked December 31st the first week.

Bill decided to put a pipe running diagonally above the fireplace mantel area if he ever wanted to run cables/wires up there. He needed to get it done before the drywallers got to that area. It was at that time that Bill noticed that we had a big dent in the pipe going up from our wood burning fireplace.

Big 'ol dent

Big ‘ol dent

Bill said the fireplace installers had to have done it. He sent pictures to the fireplace guy and to our HVAC guy to see how it could be fixed and if the dent would pose a leaking problem. Turned out Jason, the HVAC guy, provided Bill with some stainless steel and he clamped it over the pipe. And, the fireplace people gave us a $50 credit. All done before the drywallers hung the sheets around the fireplace surround.

The fixed pipe

The fixed pipe

The next week the drywallers worked on Monday (Jan. 7) and finished hanging the drywall in the house and the garage on Tuesday (Jan. 8). It was a big ‘ol mess in the house.

Big mess in the house after drywall hangers left

Big mess in the house after drywall hangers left. That’s Bill picking up some scraps.

However, we had asked that the drywall company clean up all the scraps and remove from the house. And, we agreed to a price. Best $200 we could have spent. The owner of the company ended up doing the clean-up on Wednesday, Jan. 9. He even recycled all the drywall scraps and took them away in his truck. That was a good thing. Otherwise, I think our dumpster would have had to be emptied after that! The way it is, we still have not had to pay to empty it yet.

It was exciting to see the rooms with walls up.

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The stone guys have worked as many days as they could, weather permitting. It was interesting to see how they tented the area in the winter and used a bullet heater inside of it to set up the mortar.

Mudding the front of the house

Mudding the front of the house

Mud

Mud

The tented stone area

The tented stone area

It was so warm in the make-shift tent that they didn’t wear coats – and it was really cold outside!

Mud applied and installing the stone

Mud applied and installing the stone

Bill said it was really interesting to watch how they applied the mortar. They used bags with tips – much like ones you would use to decorate a cake!

Front section of the garage done. The ledge cap wasn't installed yet

Front section of the garage done. The ledge cap wasn’t installed yet

Front of the house with the tents

Front of the house with the tents

Friday, January 10, Bill scheduled the insulation guys to come back and blow the insulation into the attic. After that, he hooked up the portable furnace and turned it on.

Portable furnace

Portable furnace

What with those horrible Arctic temps that came through it was still hard to keep the house totally warm because we still didn’t have our garage doors! Bill had large pieces of plastic and foam insulation blocking the garage door areas. He even made a make-shift door on one side to try to keep as much heat in as possible. That Bill, he’s always trying to make things work. Wished I had a picture of that door – it was pretty ingenious! Unfortunately, that was when I was sick and I didn’t get out of the house for about 10 days except to drive down the driveway and pick up the kids from the bus stop.

Now the reason we didn’t have garage doors was because we decided to upgrade. Yep, we did! And, they had to be special ordered. Bill and I were going to keep it a secret from our builder (Jim) and Jill until they were installed. However, Jim, being the ever diligent builder – called our exterior materials rep and asked why we didn’t have doors yet. 😳 There went that surprise! Well, I think it was still a surprise, just not the one we wanted! 🙂

Tuesday, January 14, the garage doors were installed. I was holding my breath that what we picked out would match with the stone and compliment the mahogany front door. Well, they did not disappoint! We love them. We went with steel insulated fiberglass mahogany stained carriage doors with windows that mimic the grids in our front windows.

Garage doors

Garage doors

close-up of garage door

close-up of garage door

So, when the garage doors were being installed Bill and I talked that it would look strange not having the stone go all the way along the garage door side of the house. It was going to be where everyone pulled up and would see. So, we asked Rick to give us a price of what it would cost to stone the garage side. Gulp! Another upgrade. Rick said they had an extra pallet of stone so we should have enough to do it. So, we said yes!

Then . . . driving up Jill and Jim’s driveway after picking the kids up from the bus, I’m looking at the west side of the house thinking – well, this side is going to look strange not having stone on it. Who puts stone on one side of their house and not the other? Bill said he would! I said I didn’t want to. Now, don’t you think it would look better to having matching sides? Doesn’t the west side look like it needs stone?

West side of house needs stone!

West side of house needs stone!

So, Bill called Rick that evening and said verbatim, “My wife wants stone installed on the west side of the house!” 😀 So, Rick had to order more stone! We are waiting for the stone to come in to finish the exterior. But, here is what it looks like so far.

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We had a different crew who did the taping and mudding of the drywall. Turns out they were as grumpy as the first crew! They would work one day or two a week and then not come back until the following week. They said they had to leave the mud dry so they could sand it off.

The tub in the hall bathroom has mud all over it. Yuck!

The tub in the hall bathroom has mud all over it. Yuck!

Master shower

Master shower

Family room taped and mudded

Family room taped and mudded

Kitchen

Kitchen – not sure why our well tank is inside

Dining area

Dining area

Laundry Room

Laundry Room

Since our siding guys were backed up for about a month, we didn’t get started on the siding until mid January. The siding was delivered into our garage on Thursday, January 16. This has posed a big problem for the drywallers! And, when I went down to see the siding and trim, I noticed that the shakes that we ordered for our gables were wrong.

Hardie Cement Board and trim in the garage

Hardie Cement Board and trim in the garage

Wrong shakes

Wrong shakes

The shakes we got were single 7 inch rough split with a straight edge. What we wanted are double 9 inch rough split with staggered edge. They reordered the shakes the following week. Not sure how long those will take to get in.

So, the siding guys started on Friday, January 17. They started by installing the fascia and soffits.

Soffits and Fascia

Soffits and Fascia

Since the siding guys were also going to build our columns for the front porch, Bill and I had to decide the size and where we wanted them installed on the porch. We originally had purchased stone caps for the columns the same size as Jill and Jim’s. Turns out that was way too big for our porch.

Jill and Jim's columns

Jill and Jim’s columns

So, over the weekend, Bill measured Jim and Joan’s columns on their house and we decided we needed something smaller than both of theirs! Bill got out two of our moving boxes and we placed them on the porch to get a size perspective. Turns out I didn’t want the stone to go up as far on our columns as Jill and Jim’s.

Using moving boxes to size our columns

Using moving boxes to size our columns

This is the size we decided on - 20 inch width and 18 inch depth.

This is the size we decided on – 20 inch width and 18 inch depth.

The top of the stone on the column will be the same height as the stone on the house. I wanted to make sure the columns did not block our exterior lights which will be mounted on each side of the sidelites of the door. Oh, and by the way, even though you cannot see in this picture, the color I picked for the concrete on the front porch matches the stone wonderfully! I was so happy!

Monday, January 20, we went over with the crew leader what all our exterior trim was supposed to look like before the guys started installing it that day. That evening Bill asked Jim about the flashing that was supposed to be installed behind the trim. Apparently, the guys didn’t install it. Yikes! Jim contacted the material sales guy and he contacted the siding crew. Unfortunately, Tuesday, Jan. 21, they had to rip off all the trim they had installed the day before and install the flashing.

The drywallers only worked one day last week. Bill called the owner and he said they were trying to stall their work until they could get into the garage. He said there was no way they could work around all that siding since the guys preferred to wear stilts instead of using scaffolding. And, there was no way we could manually move 7000 lbs of siding! We are anxious for the drywallers to get done as our trim and interior door package is already a week delayed in delivery. All of that needs to be stored in our house. And, I got an email that our bathroom vanities, storage cabinet and window seats are ready. At least they said they could hold them for us. What a mess working around everyone’s schedules.

So, the siding guys worked this weekend – mainly because they couldn’t work several days last week because of the weather and because we have really COLD temps coming tomorrow through Wednesday. They have gotten a lot done in those two days. I hope enough of the siding is out of the garage that the drywallers can finish this week. Here are some pictures of the siding. Now, keep in mind that the color of the lap siding is a primed colored siding. We are going to have our painter paint the siding and trim. I’ve told everyone that the siding color now reminds me of baby poop! 😯 And, I just know that when anyone rides down the road and looks at it, they will say, “What were those people thinking!” 😦

Trim around the windows

Trim around the windows

Trim around the garage doors

Trim around the garage doors

Siding on the back

Siding on the back

Back siding

Back siding

Garage side siding finished

Garage side siding finished

View of the back and garage side with siding

View of the back and garage side with siding

Starting on the front of the house with siding

Starting on the front of the house with siding

Front siding going up fast

Front siding going up fast

See, I just know you guys are saying, “What were they thinking!” as you drive past. Oh well, sometime this spring the house will be the colors I want it to be – the siding I want the same color as the fascia and soffit. And, the trim will be bronze – close to the bronze window color as possible.

Poor Bill continues to work on the cabinets when he can. He made a trip back to Indy two weeks ago and bought more mahogany plywood and got the rest of the hinges for all the cabinet doors. We are finding we lack a lot of material resources down here that Indy has. Oh well, it gave Bill a chance to go out to lunch with some of his work buddies and shop at some of the stores there. And, he got home before one of their big snows!

Bill putting together one of the upper wall cabinet doors.

Bill putting together one of the upper wall cabinet doors.

First time he ever made one with glass inserts. He's really talented.

First time he ever made one with glass inserts. He’s really talented.

And, in-between all of what has gone on in the last month, Bill and I went furniture shopping! Several times. As soon as the drywallers are done, the painter will start. And, I had not picked out any colors for the interior of the house. None! And, didn’t know where to start. I don’t think I’m going to reveal the furniture we bought until the house is done. But, I will say, Jennifer at Dean Bosler’s Furniture is the best sales woman and interior designer we could have worked with. The woman read my mind and a ton more that wasn’t in my mind. We ended up buying new furniture for the family room, a chest for the entry way, and a mattress and box spring for our “new to us” king bed. And, she picked out a paint color for the family room. Funny thing, it is the same strip that I picked out at the Benjamin Moore paint store as one of my favorites over a month before we went furniture shopping. How spooky is that?

Our painter wants to use Behr paint at Home Depot. I found out they can match any paint colors for me. So, the last several days, I’ve been creating digital mood boards using Keynote software. I place our furniture on a blank slide and color the background with paint colors. I think I’ve come up with a plan for the house. I’ve made a mood board for every room in the house. Here’s what our hall bath mood board looks like. The vanity color is showing up in the mood board with an orange tone – which it is not. It’s really called a Brandywine stain with black dye toner.

Hall Bath Mood Board

Hall Bath Mood Board

That’s about everything that’s gone on the last month.

Today is Bill’s birthday. What does Bill do on his birthday? He works on cabinets in the pole barn! Bill did tell me this morning that he cannot wait until this house is built. He isn’t enjoying all the PITA jobs that goes along with this custom build. He said it was even worse than working! I feel bad for him. He seems to make at least 5-6 trips to Menards or Lowes every week. One day he made 3 trips to Menards. We don’t live close to Menards. He said maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if he weren’t trying to build the cabinets at the same time. Every time he gets started on the cabinets, one of the contractors needs something and then that usually involves phone calls or trips to the big box store or somewhere else. We are all hoping that once the drywallers, siding guys, and stone guys get done, Bill will get a break. God bless him!

Until we meet again! Stay warm and safe. Think SPRING!