The house has gone through so many changes and is finally starting to feel like our home. Overall things have gone smoothly (I know things could have been a lot worse) and there have been only a few bumps in the road so far. Having said that, I am exhausted. Everyday I wake up and see what needs to be done. Living through an update is hard on the mind. It is a constant to do list reminder. When the kitchen is finished I will be taking on client work again and will be taking a break from the house. There is a 12 month to do list but nothing urgent needs to be done.
Here is a list and a look back on what's happened over the past 3 months. I plan on writing posts about each room when they are finished but for now here is a quick review.
- FENCE & SOD: We built over 150 feet of privacy and cattle panel fencing around the yard for the dogs and for some privacy. We built it the first few weeks in the house and almost died of heat stroke. I do not recommend building a fence in the Texas summer heat unless you have to. Read about it here. I still need to stain it but it "works" so staining can wait. After we built the fence our yard was a mess from the Bobcat. We decided to rent a tiller and level out the yard a little better and buy Palmetto grass. It is supposed to be drought and bug resistant. It took us 1 day with help from Blittle's parents to get it all down. Not an easy job but our yard looks great now!
- Hurricane Shutters: Out of 22 hurricane shutters, 20 of them didn't work. EEEKK! And we bought our house during hurricane season. Double EEEKK! For us, the shutters were one of the reasons we bought the house. We had the company come out and fix them. Thankfully, most of them were just clogged up with paint and needed to be loosened up. Only a few had broken mechanical parts and needed a lot of work. Now they all work and open or close easily!
- Outdoor Seating: I made a coffee table from a door left by the previous owners (the tutorial is here) and I bought some outdoor furniture. Of course I have moved things around since the original post, but you can read about our outdoor area here.
- Doggie Ramp: Living on the water comes with some fears. The big one is drowning of children and pets. In the first week living here, we had several people mention that we needed to teach the dogs how to get out of the water in case they fall in....or in Jaxson's case, jump in. We knew this and were already shopping around for steps or a ramp. I ordered a ramp but it didn't work well so Blittle built one. Jaxson LOVES it. That sweet boy has always loved the water. Now he gets to swim a few times a week. Sabine does not like to swim. We are working with her to get comfortable with it and teach her how to use the ramp but she is so scared. She was neglected until we got her at 8 months old and we are not sure if something happened to her with water or she just wasn't exposed to it enough as a pup. She loves to play in it, splash in it and run in it but as soon as she has to swim, she is freaking out. Here are a few pictures of Jaxson in action.
- Flooring: Flooring is one of the things we hired out. We needed it done ASAP so we could start moving our belongings into the house and didn't have the time to build a fence and do the floors so we hired out the flooring. It is a luxury vinyl plank and I love it. I was really nervous about choosing vinyl because tile was my first choice and lets be honest, vinyl has a bad reputation. But after living with it for 3 months, I still love it. It has been easy to clean and holds up against the dogs. Also, it looks so much better than I thought it would. Vinyl has come a long way in recent years.
Scary blue carpet
Pretty Luxury Vinyl Planks
- Living room: The living room has had the walls, trim and ceiling painted. A new ceiling fan has been installed. I am still playing musical chairs and couches with the furniture trying to decide on a layout but for the most part, the living room is almost done. I need to decide on curtain fabric and make curtains. Also, I need some end tables and put our decor up. The entertainment center is amazing in the space! I am so glad I kept that piece! Read about it here.
- Master Bedroom: The master bedroom has had the walls, trim and ceiling painted and a new ceiling fan installed. I also painted our "His" and "Hers" closets and installed closet organizers. I refinished a dresser for Brian's clothes and I have used antique, hand me down peices from my parents as bed side tables. The headboard I made a few years ago (I'll be writing a post about it soon) and we already had the bedding. I am using the same curtains we used in New Orleans for the large window facing the water, but I have to trim them since our ceilings aren't as high here. I need to find some fabric and sew curtains for the little windows on each side of the bed.
Aunt Jenny's Dresser Makeover - I wanted something natural looking. Restoration Hardware-ish. I hated it at first but now I really like it.
- Spare Room #1: This room is the guest room. The walls, trim and ceiling have been painted and it has a new ceiling fan. It has my mom's spindle bed that I painted a while back and had in our guest room in New Orleans. I haven't done side tables or anything else in this room. Right now it has the bed and boxes that haven't been unpacked yet. It's kind of a storage unit right now. :)
- Spare Room #2: This room will be the office. The walls, trim, and ceiling have been painted and it has a new ceiling fan. I took the doors off the the closet and set up my workout center. The table I refinished for our office in New Orleans is in there along with my great aunt's chifferobe and of course...boxes. This room is also storing boxes that haven't been unpacked yet. I am looking for a large 9-drawer dresser to refinish to use as storage instead of having open storage. I like hiding stuff. When there is open storage everything has to be neat and pretty and lets be honest people, sometimes having a home office and storing craft/sewing supplies is not neat and pretty. :)
- Hallway: The walls, trim and ceiling have been painted and new lights were put in. Read about it here.
- Laundry Closet: Our laundry closet is so tiny. I miss my big laundry room. There is no place to put my detergent or cleaners. I still haven't decided what I am going to do about a door. It has been painted and my appliances are installed so it works but I have some details to work out. Read about it here.
- Dining area: We added crown molding and the walls, trim and ceiling have been painted. I installed my DIY electric lantern (read about it here). My grandmother's dresser that I refinished several years ago, will be a coffee bar and stores a lot of my bakeware. I am planning on putting shelves over it to display pictures. We need more lighting in this area and I have an available light switch and wiring but I am not sure what I am going to do. We are still throwing around ideas. Curtains are also on the to do list in this area. I promise to post some dining area pictures soon.
- Kitchen: The kitchen has had a HUGE transformation. The other rooms just needed some lipstick but the kitchen needed a facelift. The entire room was DIYed so it has taken a while but we are almost done. Should be done this week!!!! Here is the list of changes.
- Ripped out old countertops and removed old appliances
- Built custom fridge enclosure - read about it here
- Molding added to fur down - read about it here
- Replaced rotted wood and waterproofed under the sink - read about it here
- Cabinets, ceiling, and trim painted
- Organizers added to cabinets
- New sink, faucet, knobs, chrome plated hinges - read about it here
- Butcherblock countertops - read about it here and the tutorial here
- Purchased and installed new appliances - read about it here
- Installed garbage disposal & exhaust for vent a hood - read about it here
- New Light fixtures
- New window stool and molding
- Tile backsplash - just finished - will write post in a few days
It looks totally different and I can't wait for the reveal. It is so much nicer than anything I ever thought I would have. I have stated before that the kitchen was small and I hated it but now it feels so much bigger and is bright and happy. I love cooking in it and staring at it while sitting on the couch. :)
- Garage/Shop: During Hurricane Ike our current neighborhood and home had major flooding. Afterwards, the electrical downstairs was not replaced so we had a total of 2 outlets in the entire garage and they were located in weird places. We hired an electrician to add outlets inside the garage and put a few outside. It was very dark down there so we installed high output florescent lights through out. Blittle built my paint booth and over the past few weeks we have added peg boards and built work tables and shelves. This weekend I am hoping my sink will be put in. Right now I have no water downstairs except for the water hose. I need a utility sink in the shop so I can wash up after painting. We also have a spot for a toliet and shower so both of those are on our to do list for the shop. It will be nice to have a restroom downstairs.
BLittle's area in the shop
Sabine patiently waiting outside the paint booth
The only major updates we have left are the bathrooms which will be done over the next year...hopefully. We also need to paint the outside of the house. The 90's blue is hard for me to look at so we are hoping to get to that soon as well. Once we are done bringing boxes up on the elevator, I want to paint it a fun color. It's kind of dark and scary. The to do list is still a mile long but at least its not 10 miles long like it was. Here are a few fun pictures of our life on the water.
Sabine's favorite spot. She lays there so much the grass is dying.
Jaxson's favorite spot. He loves watching the water from the house.
My best friend's little boy fell asleep on the porch after a long day in Galveston.
Sabine loves visiting with the ducks.
My favorite spots