Are we done yet?

I have learned that in a remodel, there is no clear finish point.  It seems to just keep going and going and going.  We are in the house–moved in the Saturday before Christmas.  We did not have countertops or a kitchen sink, but we were in.  And it felt good–still does.

Countertops have now been installed.  And the kitchen is very functional. And I love it.  This island makes me endlessly happy.



But many people have asked if we are finished.  I don’t think we are.  We have a collection of projects that need to be completed.  Window treatments.  Touch up on the walls and lots of woodwork to paint.  Installing interior doors.  Completing some electrical work.  Putting screens on our windows.  Peeling all the stickers off our windows.  Yard work out the yin yang.  And all the final inspections.  We try to do a little bit each weekend. Hopefully by summer we can say, “we are finished.”

More than anything, I am just so grateful.  I love even emptying the dish washer in this kitchen.

The finish work.

We have had tile guys and trim carpenters at our house for the last two weeks (with Thanksgiving delaying things a bit).  The bathroom tile is complete.  And I am really excited about the end result.


We still need countertops in there, along with marble tops for the bench and other horizontal places.


Scott also installed lights to go above the mirrors in the bathroom.  I am trying to determine what type of mirrors need to go in the space.  I think it needs some texture of some sort.  Any ideas?

IMG_0195And then we need the finishing touches like cabinet pulls, faucets, details, details.

Trim is going in all over the house–around the windows, along the baseboards, crown moulding, etc.  The same carpenters built out the mudroom, master closet and pantry.  I am particularly excited about the mudroom, where we will have floor to ceiling storage for towels.  We have never had enough storage for the towels Scott collects.  I keep some in my car permanently for lack of another option.  “You can never have too many towels,” Scott says.  I support his habit.

We spent much of our Thanksgiving painting some of these things, plus the built-ins throughout the house.  Then last weekend we painted the doors and drawers for the kitchen cabinetry.  They dried darker than the below picture, which I am excited about.  Rosemary, by Sherwin Williams…


Scott is working hard to complete electrical stuff so that we can get that inspection complete.  This will take a little time because we must first finish the backsplash in the kitchen so that he can put plates on.  And we can’t do the backsplash until the countertops are in.  And the counter tops won’t go in for another 10 days or so from now.  Logistics.

I sure am grateful for all the help we have had on this project.  Scott’s mom has spend days at our house helping.  My parents too.  And so many have brought us meals so that we can keep pressing on.  It certainly take a village.

We are so ready to be back in the house.  I might even revert back to my “newly married, domestic goddess, baking phase,” where I tried to bake bread and other complicated, self-defeating recipes with only marginal success.  I am ready to just get in that kitchen and use it!  Pretzel rolls anyone?

The floor guy came yesterday for one more round of polly finish.  We will let that set for a few days and then start bringing things into the house, while we slowly paint trim, wait for countertops, finish electrical, and dream of a functional kitchen and our own bed.  That will feel like Christmas, indeed.

Cabinets and floors.

One of the things I have learned about remodeling, is that most of the time is spent on things you will never see–wiring, plumbing, foundation, framing, roof, etc.  We are just now getting to the phase that I have been dreaming of: the pretty!  And if you are instagram, most of these pictures will be repeats.  So sorry.

Cabinetry was delivered and installed last week.  There are a few tweaks that will need to happen, so ALL of the cabinetry was not installed, but a lot of it was.

This is the addition–what used to be patio/backyard that is now kitchen.  The cabinets along the wall will have soapstone tops.  We will paint the cabinetry over the next few weeks.


The island will have 4 stools, and will have a butcher block top.  The door to the right is a mudroom that leads to the garage.  The left one is a little storage nook.


This is the dining room.  The window surrounded by cabinets used to be the location of my kitchen sink.  Scott has plans to make a big table.


The living room.


Our bedroom with build-ins.  The doorway to the right is our closet, but that wall used to be an outside wall.  Our closet used to be on the other side of the room which now is a larger bathroom.


The bathroom vanity, which will have a set in piece of upper cabinetry.


The floor guy, Jacob, stained the floors on Sunday and Monday and we are really excited about the results.



The doorway in this picture is the pantry.




This week the tile guy and trim carpenters start.  And countertops will get measured.  Progress.

The ugly stuff is almost complete.

There is nothing pretty about framing, the guts of plumbing, and electrical lines.  The infrastructure is necessary, but it is not very exciting.  But since the last update, that is what we have been doing.  The one pretty thing we have accomplished is painting the exterior of the house.  The best bid we received for painting the exterior was still higher than what we expected.  So we did it ourselves.  I won’t lie; it was the opposite of fun.  But it saved us about $4000, which means more pretty stuff.  So I will take it.

Here’s the current look of the outside.  (Here is what it looked like before the change.)  White trim, charcoal gray siding, a blue ceiling, and cedar post columns.  Megan bought me two mid century porch chairs that are mint green at Round Top last weekend.  I am super excited to add those.  Are you impressed with our garage door?  In a few weeks we will have a real one, painted the same color as the house.


Here’s a better view of the blue.  It is an old southern tradition that I think is a little funky and fun.  It is supposed to ward off evil spirits and keep birds from nesting there–because it is the color of the sky.  I just like the blue.  As we were painting it, Scott kept saying, “good thing we won’t have any evil spirits in here.  What a relief!”


We still need to do the door.  Here’s our color choice.  We will wait until construction is complete inside for that little project.


This pretty guy was on sale at Barn Light Electric and will go over my island with his sister.  I am excited about them.


We added skylights in the kitchen at the last minute.  I really want there to be a lot of natural light in the space and there did not seem to be enough without them.  I am really excited about how they turned out.


This is the view of our kitchen, from the mud room.  The wood floors are in, but not yet sanded and stained.  That will come in a few weeks.


We are hopeful that next week will be successful framing, plumbing and HVAC inspections so that we can insulate and put walls in.  Then we paint and stain floors.  Then move back in to “camp.”  Then get kitchen cabinets, appliances, etc.  Cabinets are being made now.  And I am excited about them.

Progress is slow.  But steady.  Scott has worked harder than I have ever seen anyone work.  Showing up before work, at lunch, staying til dark and beyond.  Every. Day.  He is at Home Depot when they open on most Saturdays and Sundays.  He amazes me.  He passed his electrical inspection successfully with the inspector complementing his work.  His Youtube education seems to be doing the trick!  Mainly he is smart.  He has put so much thought into where we need certain switches and what will make things extra convenient.  I am so grateful for his work on this!