Posts Tagged ‘new house’

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make me pretty – kitchen renovation, let there be light!

March 18, 2015

So much has been happening in the kitchen but most of it is behind the scenes kind of stuff. The floor has been leveled and we have sub-floor! And lights have been installed – lots and lots of lights! The hanging lightbulbs are markers for where the pendants will eventually go. We have a garage full of new appliances and the cabinets are getting delivered Monday! Walls and ceilings started going up yesterday and we should have a slate tile floor before the end of the week!!

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There were a couple major problems we had to deal with once we found out what was behind the faux brick wall and soffit. We really wanted the soffit to become much shorter so it didn’t feel like it was diving the room in half. We were hoping we would only find the stove vent in there but no such luck. There were some radiator pipes and a giant cast iron waste pipe in our way. There was talk of leaving things where they were and just building a box around it but we ended up moving everything out of the way so we could have the kitchen the way we really want it. This also involved building a new support beam across the kitchen where the soffit had been. This is not the glamorous part of kitchen renovation but it is usually the reality. Some unforeseen problem that puts you over budget and behind schedule!

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Speaking of unforeseen problems, we had a major one a couple of weeks ago. One Saturday I was home alone with the kids and every time I walked past our newly installed hot water heater it would sound like water was running through it. I didn’t think much of it at first because I have never had the water heater in my living space and I don’t really know what kind of sounds they make. Anyway, after an afternoon at the Children’s Museum we came home to find the water heater still making that sound and I started to worry. When my husband got home I asked him about it and then we went into the kitchen to check progress and to see how much water was under the house. (The floor was still pulled up in the kitchen and with all the snow melting there had been an inch or two of water under the house.)

Holy cow, there was like 8″ of water under the house. And it was about 9:30 on Saturday night!! We texted our contractor, called a friend for advice, tried to find the main water shut off to the house and freaked out! In our search for the main water shut off we stumbled across a huge water leak. Water was shooting out of the crawl space under the mud room.

Our contractor saved the day! He showed up after 10 on Saturday night and shut off the water at the street. Then he crawled into the freezing cold, swimming pool of a crawl space and found the culprit – an old copper pipe had burst – totally un-related to the kitchen reno, by the way. He helped calm down my total freak out (it was not pretty) and promised to return the next morning.

So Sunday morning, at 7 am, which was really 6 am because it was time change day – our amazing contractor showed up to fix the pipe. And unbelievably he brought us coffee and croissants – he even remembered I only drink decaf! I am super impressed!

So after he fixed the pipe he went and got a pump and pumped all the water out from under the house (sigh of relief!) So once again, if you are in RVA and need a contractor I would recommend Russell Bell – RVA Fixer. He is awesome! You can find him on Twitter @farmerrussell

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make me pretty – our mudroom

October 30, 2014

One of the many things that makes me super excited about our new house is finally having a mud room. With three kids, trying to manage the coats and shoes and backpacks is a major headache. I love having a  first stop room where all the junk can stay.

When we closed on the house, one of the first things we did was take down these mud room window treatments. I am almost as anxious to remove the horrible laminate floor but that will have to wait. I would love to put in slate tile but patience, I must have patience.

So here is phase 1 of the mud room re-do.

We start with the before:

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And after:

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Our old friendly Ikea bench, and Ollies new favorite napping spot.

I used an old wood plank I found in the garage and some Ikea brackets to make a shelf and installed mis-matched hooks underneath for coats, bags, etc.

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Our plants are very happy here!

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I made a kid height coat check area. Do you think a cute, chalk board hook with their initials will encourage them to hang up their coats? Probably not but it’s worth a try!

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I hung up some of my favorite art work.

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And somehow found this street sign that not only has our previous street name but also the number of our  block at my favorite local junk shop – Class and Trash.

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make me pretty – our new house!

September 17, 2014

I have been totally slacking on this blog and I haven’t painted a piece of furniture in at least 3 weeks and I am going into withdrawal! My time has been totally absorbed with packing and unpacking because we moved! We had been living in a lovely house in Byrd Park in the City of Richmond for almost 9 years. I really loved that house and our neighborhood and our especially great neighbors. We just needed more outdoor space. With three kids, two of them wild boys, our postage stamp, brick paver, back yard just wasn’t cutting it anymore.

So we moved to Ashland, to this crazy cute storybook english cottage. I am totally in love with this house. It is very charming on the outside but a bit of a fixer upper on the inside. I think the last time anyone did any real interior updates was in the 60’s.

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But I’m not afraid. I am really excited to turn this house into exactly what we want. I am especially excited about this great kitchen space that we are going to gut and re-create. So stay tuned for posts about the house re-do, and of course there will be more furniture transformations too!

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And check out my amazing new studio space!

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