Wednesday, June 19, 2013

What are you doing?

What all are you doing? This seems to be a common question when people hear we are going to do some major renovations to the new house before we move in. Part of that is because, well there are some major renovations that need to occur, but a big part of it is because we don't want to live through those renovations with two toddlers. It's already confusing enough for them to get the concept of a move but then to try and keep them out of all the dust, dirt, tools, etc. - well that would just be a nightmare.

So to answer that question, here's a little breakdown of what we plan to do in the coming months before we move in (once we close of course). And by "we" I mean mostly our contractor and his fleet of henchmen. This isn't a complete list of what we plan to do overall but it's what we'd like to do before we step foot in with any boxes.


  • remove the very large cedar tree blocking most of the house (and maybe a few of the smaller, scraggly trees to open up the yard
  • new roof
  • new heating/air gas pac that also includes repairing the duct work that is in bad disrepair
  • replace all exterior doors (3) with six light steel doors to add extra light (may change my mind on the front door but we'll see) and then add storm doors to the front of the house and a retractable screen door to the back. (and at some point we'll paint them)


  • remove smelly, old carpet and put down cork floor (better sound proofing for Daniel's movie watching pleasure)
  • smooth and paint ceiling (it's the only room in the house that is popcorn)


  • remove wallpaper and prepare walls for painting
  • repair and paint ceilings (I hate painting a ceiling so this was an easy choice!)
  • refinish floors and add quarter round (this will be done all throughout the house)
  • likely remove the decaying drapes and blinds although that's not built in to the contractor's list...but I'm pretty sure I don't want the kids playing in them upon arrival
  • widen the door in the top picture so it feels more open
  • widen the door from the living room to the foyer (not seen)


Here's where it gets fun so try to follow me...
  • convert the coat closet (in the top picture) to a closet for the bedroom (in the bottom picture). In other words, when it's done the top picture will just be a wall with an entry to the hallway versus two doors.
  • convert the current closet in the guest bedroom in to a laundry closest in the hallway. They will bump out the wall by 12 inches to give us enough depth and then wall it up. From the hallway they will create a brand new laundry closet so we don't have to keep them in the kitchen. YAY!
  • new washer and dryer (hip hip hooray!)


  • remove wallpaper and prepare walls for paint
  • replace vanity in master (the pink one)
  • change out faucets and light fixtures (thinking bronzed fixtures would look good in both and then light neutral wall colors to balance it out)
  • add mirrors and shower curtains...oh and perhaps some blinds would be nice! (again not on the contractor's list but something we will do before we move in or ASAP)
  • in the pink bathroom there is just a stand up shower and the shower pan has to be replaced which means the floor will be removed and retiled as well (probably a good thing because it's sort've gross)
  • most likely we will caulk (and by we I mean me, not our contractor)

This is where I get really excited...
  • replace vinyl floor with hardwoods
  • move the stove to the other wall (near the back door where the washer/dryer used to be) which also means the gas line has to be moved and the washer/dryer connections have to be removed
  • cut out cabinet to add microwave above the stove
  • build cabinets where the old stove and vent are currently located
  • build cabinets beside stove in it's new location (there would still be a gap from where the washer/dryer were)
  • install new stainless appliances
  • add granite countertops
  • add a disposal
  • change out sink (under mount stainless) and faucet
  • replace hardware on cabinets (eventually we will replace the cabinet doors but that was out of our budget for now)
  • add a table to use as an island (unless I can't find one and then we'll just buy a movable island but those can get pricy)
  • installing pendant light over the sink and a light fixture in the middle (over the "island")
  • and don't forget we'll change out the door so it gets much more light in there
What's not listed is that we also have lots of plumbing and electrical that has to occur here because of the moving around of appliances and the addition of a disposal.

Other things on the list in the house include:
  • refinishing all the hardwoods and adding quarter round
  • repairing and painting all the ceilings
  • removing wallpaper and preparing the walls for paint (which we'll do as we go along)

We have high hopes of being in there by the middle of September but we'll see if we get any unexpected surprises. I can't wait to start jotting down all our ideas for each room once we move in. I need to live in the house for a little bit so I can get a better feel for what it can shape into. A few of my ideas to leave you with...light grey walls, pops of fun color (think citrus), bright white trim, fabric...lots and lots of colorful fabric.

Stay tuned as we chronicle being nomads over the coming months...Charlie (2.5 yrs) is already walking around our house asking "momma what you doin?! why you do dat?!" as we pack everything up.


  1. So Happy for you! Looks like a lot of work but worth the effort.

  2. You have wonderful ideas, great taste and will design a beautiful home for your family. Congratulations! I look forward to following your progress - keep posting the pics!