Considering I’m already forgetting what we’ve done to the house, I thought I’d write a post sharing what we’ve accomplished thus far. I actually can’t believe I haven’t done this already. Shame on me! So I’ll start from the very beginning, and hopefully I won’t exclude anything but I probably will because I haven’t been keeping track of it all and we all know how mama-brain works. It’s gonna be long, so hang tight. Also, I was tempted to put who did what by each task but I know Ryan will overshadow me to the point of embarrassment and shame. So yeah. Not happening.

Oh, and to help you envision the layout, I’ve decided to include the photos we took of the house during our initial house hunt so you can what we had to work with. I plan to post more for comparison once we have “after” shots, too. Our house is considered a tri-level with a basement. It’ll be a little hard to follow the virtual tour, but try your best. I’ll forgive you if you get confused. Ready for the initial tour? I thought so.

Looking to the left from the front entry – main level. Ugly rugs are covering disgusting cat pee stains. Behind the wall is the kitchen.

Around the corner view of living room window from the main entry/hallway – main level.

View of the dining room from the living room - main level. Kitchen is to the right of this.

View of the upstairs from the living/dining room (by the fireplace) – main level.

Upstairs hallway. First door on left is the yellow kid/guest bathroom. Second door on left is the master bedroom that has a lovely blue half-bathroom. First door on right is the office/second bedroom. Door at the end is Sonora's room.

View through the kitchen from the breakfast nook.

View from the upstairs of the breakfast nook. Stairs going down to garage level are next to the table pictured.

Going down to the garage level from the main level. (I am standing by the upstairs stairs as well.) Half bathroom and laundry are on this level. View of the basement stairs.

View from the far end of the basement looking up the stairs to the garage level. Two closets are pictured. There is a storage room down here as well as a fourth bedroom (behind giagantaur 9.5-month pregnant me).

So now that you have an idea of the layout and the terms I’ll be using – from the purchase until a few weeks ago (another post coming up), here we go.

Week One (5.13-5.21 – before move-in):

  • removed all light fixtures, outlets, ceiling fans, vent registers, etc. in preparation for demolition…er, renovations
  • popcorn ceiling removal on two rooms upstairs (master bedroom & office/second bedroom) – painted ceilings with Killz primer and ceiling paint
  • painted the two de-popcorned (not a word? it is now) rooms
  • took wallpaper off in basement
  • more popcorn ceiling removal on remaining room upstairs, main level, garage level and basement – painted ceilings with Killz primer and ceiling paint

Ryan and Greg hard at work on the main level popcorn ceilings. Using a pressure sprayer with water and a scraper. Imagine this mess everywhere.

Throwing wallpaper scraps away in the basement. I look delighted when, in fact, I am not. Please note the hideous wall color by the fireplace.

Week Two (5.22-5.28 – my mom in town):

  • deep cleaned the upstairs so we could move in
  • moved everything from the rental condo into our garage; moved somewhat into the upstairs – enough to make it liveable
  • cleaned more of the house for my sanity (which then of course was lost once we had drywall dust – not plaster as I mentioned before – all over the place)
  • replaced washer with washer we had at the rental condo (although dual washers would be nice for cloth diapering…)
  • replaced kitchen faucet (brother-in-law)
  • realized the ceilings did not look the best after popcorn removal so hired contractor to patch ALL ceilings (except our bedroom which was the only place of sanctuary throughout this process and did Ryan really want me to lose my mind completely? i think not) – it took contractor over two weeks to finish. Mind explosion.
  • mowed the yard for the first time with our very first mower and weed whacker – woo!
  • oven did not work due to malfunctioning part so grilling out and sitting in camp chairs on the back porch happened morning, noon & night

Week Three (5.29-6.04):

  • hired same contractor to cover main level & kitchen wallpaper with drywall mud once we realized it would take 8 years to complete
  • hired plumbers to fix the leaks in our two upstairs’ bathrooms
  • hired roofers to re-roof!

Let me insert here that this was the second week of total house disaster; I lost my mind (case in point: I was making coffee in our bathroom). One day all three contractors were at our house working on it. Meltdown. Hence, no photos of this chaos except for this absurdity:

Like our blue bathroom? It's pretty sweet.

Anyway, I shall continue:

  • painted more rooms
  • re-painted most of the ceilings with Killz primer and ceiling paint – AGAIN (this means each ceiling was painted four times, or more)
  • unpacked a bit and moved some more stuff in (mainly kitchen)
  • trimmed the gross, scrubby trees in the backyard (which we had planned to remove right away…until we heard our backyard neighbor cursing at her kids)
  • trimmed some rose bushes (soon to be removed)
  • re-cleaned areas where drywall dust got (aka – everywhere)
  • brain fart…I’m SURE there was more but I can’t remember

Week Four (6.05-6.10 – inlaws in town)

  • filthy carpet removal – FINALLY; discovered the carpet was black underneath from cat urine – DISGUSTING (inlaws tackled this one)
  • everything that comes with carpet removal – took nails & staples out, took out wood around the edges that carpet was stapled into, disposed of carpet, got rid of nasty tile that was underneath carpet on garage level, etc.)
  • more and more painting (hallways, remaining ceilings, touch-up on trim, main room in basement)
  • painted the main living room with Killz oil-based paint (the kind they use to cover odors in meth labs – so we’ve heard…*sideways glance*…ahem – and whoa, smelly!) to cover up cat urine odors from previous owners
  • again, I’m SURE there was more but mama-brain has done it again

Freshly painted walls and floor. Aaaand the ugly recliners we'll never be rid of. *sigh* I have a love/hate relationship with them.

Weeks Five & Six (6.11-6.25)

  • NOTHING! Our trip back to Illinois and Michigan gave us a much needed and well-deserved break from house renovations.

And there is where I will take a break to give your eyes a rest. I am sad to say that the photos I’ve included are really the only photos I’ve taken of the process so far (except some that I cannot find anywhere on this stinken computer…grr). SO unlike us not to take more progress shots, but it was just so overwhelming for me that I didn’t even feel like documenting the process. And I think Ryan had enough on his plate. Oh, and you can see exterior and yard photos here.

More updates coming up!

Love,
Laura