Friday, July 26, 2013

Deck Unveiling

Before I get to the ACTUAL unveiling, let's take a trip down memory lane, shall we?

This is what the back of the house looked like when we bought it.

And then we ripped off the little deck (on the left in the above picture) and had lots of holes everywhere.
that's not a window - that's a hole in the basement wall where rotten siding was taken off the house

and new walls put back on

And it stayed like that until all the snow melted (ie, June) and the boys could dig holes in the ground.  BIG HOLES.
see Dustin in the back there?  he's standing WAIST DEEP in a hole

those footings were about 4' tall, and they were nearly 100% buried
And then a big truck came and dropped off a lot of materials.

Then the posts were put in.

And the joists.

Then the deck boards.

And a new railing.

And the siding went back up on the house.

Oh, and see that creeper propane tank in the background in the picture above?  He needed to be relocated, since he was sitting right where the steps were planned to go.

The gas company came and put a new (bigger) tank off in the woods a bit, dug a trench, laid the pipe to carry the propane to the house, and buried the pipe.  We'll put up a little fence to hide/camouflage it, so it doesn't stand out so much.  With this new tank, we should only be filling up once a year or so; we have gas hot water right now, and will be connecting our new grill directly to the house propane at some point so we'll never run out in the middle of a BBQ!  The fireplace in the living room will also be propane.

Back to the deck.  The angled corners were a problem for the railing system.  The brackets that hold the railing to the posts don't work on angles, so we had to wait a couple of weeks for the right pieces to come in.  They were finally installed (along with the steps)!

So, finally.... Before:

and After:

We are so excited for parties and BBQ's - even just to have dinner outside!  Now we just need to buy a table and chairs... and maybe a lounger or two....

A facelift

When we bought our house last fall, the front looked like this:

And since then, not really anything has changed.  We pulled out of couple of plants that completely died over the winter, but that's about it.

I knew that I wanted to do something about the front door situation.  The door and the sidelights are black.  Maybe they could be described as "super dark charcoal grey" but essentially they're black.

Here's a (really blurry) zoom in on the picture above:

Aside from the totally blah door color, the porch paint was peeling and it just looked allover sad.

Matt made friends with a painter, who has been doing some work for us (NOT the same painter who did the rest of the house), and before it started raining and didn't stop for a month he got started on priming the sidelights.  We also have a couple of options for the door.
note the peeling paint on the floor boards - and crazy bird's nest above the door

Can you see the difference between the old picture (with the black sidelights) and these (where they've been painted white)?  The top yellow and the bottom yellow are very similar, and in some lights one looks better, and in other lights the other one looks better.  We decided to go with....

The bottom one, Sun Shower! 
that's after only one coat
And before, when you looked up at the porch ceiling, it was pretty splotchy and blah....

... but now we have a fun surprise! 

It's like sunshine and blue sky.  It makes us both so happy when we walk outside.

Here's the pretty, newly-painted floor

But something was missing.  The fire department was going to yell at us.  When the door got painted, we peeled off the graffiti-looking stickers on the door that said our house number.  Even though our house number is on (both sides of) our mailbox, it also has to be on the house, visible from the street.  On the mailbox for the post office people, on the house for the emergency workers.  I bought some metal stick-on numbers from Home Depot and stuck them on between rainstorms this week.

So to save you from scrolling all the way back to the top, here's the before again:

And the after:

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Let there be light!

Our dining room was missing something.  I figured out what it was when I couldn't see my dinner.

Maybe you could tell from the last picture - it was a light!  (I guess I don't take too many pictures of the dining room)  There were the wires for a chandelier hanging from the ceiling (maybe you can see them in the middle picture), but no light.  I was looking for something a little decorative,  but that still fit in with the rest of our house.

Ahh, that's better!  With a dimmer and everything!

Let's get a little closer.

I love that the crystals make it a little more formal (hey, dining rooms can be a little more formal), but the dark metal makes it more modern, as do the crystal balls - they're not cut crystals like the older chandeliers you see.

Lots of other stuff going on around here too - hopefully more posts soon!