Nightmare on Elm St.

The journey of turning the nightmare we bought on Elm St. into our dream home...

My blog has moved! Redirecting...

You should be automatically redirected. If not, visit and update your bookmarks.

Sunday, November 20, 2005

One step forward, one step back...

Aaron and I have been working crazy hard to try to get going on the basement. Here is a schematic of the basement BEFORE-


Here is a schematic of the basement plan AFTER-


We got 90% of the tear-out done on Saturday, and even had to take two trucks to get everything to the dump (and we still have a big pile in the backyard). Unfortunately ,we would have been more productive, but in true "redemption weekend" style (Mike's been calling all of these weekends "redemption weekend" because this is the weekend where we will make up for all of the stuff that went wrong the last weekend, unfortunately something always goes wrong...) we hit a snag. We went to our neighbor's house (also an Aaron) to borrow his compressor, nailer, and truck. (We have such awesome neighbors.) We got all the stuff together and put it in Aaron's truck and drove it to our house to unload (we could have walked it, but it seemed like a good idea at the time...). We unloaded the tools and then got back in the truck to go to Lowe's to buy lumber and supplies for the new walls. Of course, the truck wouldn't start, wouldn't even turn over. Aaron popped the hood to see if the battery cables were loose, and they were, but unfortunately, they were also so corroded that they couldn't be tightened. When Mike showed up, we were looking at the truck trying to fix it. One hour and a trip to the auto parts store later, we had the truck up and running with new battery connections. Woo hoo! We then had to go to Home Depot AND Lowe's b/c Lowe's didn't have the right nails for the nail gun OR an affordable temporary laundry tub. By the time we got back, Mike had ripped out almost everything that needed to come out, and broken a hammer trying to bust up the old concrete laundry sink! (he didn't know where the sledgehammer was). We are SOOO lucky to have a friend who likes to destroy things! I didn't take many pictures because I have been fighting a stomach bug all weekend, but here are Mike and Aaron fixing the other Aaron's truck:


More pictures to come... Mike is having Thanksgiving with us, and may do some work on the basement on Friday.

Paint perfect

The painter is done, and has picked up his check. He said that he doesn't have any work lined up for the winter, but the payment from our job should make sure that he's okay until spring.

Here is the view from the actual porch


And backing up-- doesn't Aaron's carpentry on the trim work for the front porch look absolutely beautiful? You'd never know it wasn't original.


And backing up again-- he ended up having to replace all of the trim above the front middle window in the bay on the 2nd floor due to old rot from ice dams. Then, the new 1x6 tongue and groove stuck out, so I asked the painter to caulk the grooves to make them look like they had 90 years of paint. I think that he did a great job, even though Aaron and I had a silent trip to work from arguing about this.


And, finally a view from across the street. Mike thought that we'd replaced everything with plastic b/c it was so shiny.


We have two minor details left to take care of-
1. Aaron replaced the light next to the door, but he hasn't done the one on the porch ceiling yet. When he gets that done, I'll post pictures. The one he's replaced looks great, though!

2. We still have to replace the lattice under the right side of the porch. We have all of the stuff, it's just a matter of actually getting it done.

So, I'd say that we're 95% of the way done! Yay! It feels so great to have the bulk of this project behind us. Now, if I could just find a mailbox...

We do plan to have Tom come back next spring and paint the roof over the porch and the concrete porch floor, but we need to save up some money first!

Finally, Fancy Fun Fridge

I've been meaning to post these for awhile, but sometimes houseblogging gets pushed aside for actual house work, plus work-work has been killing me lately.

This is right after the fridge was delivered- views from dining room and from back door-



Tonight, Aaron and I finished up with the matching trim pieces, so here are pictures from tonight (sorry that they're a little dark)



Overall, we're very, very happy with the fridge. We can't believe how much extra room we have in there now! What a difference 3 inches made! We still have some minor adjustments to the cabinet to the right when facing the fridge to make, but they're very low priority right now. Maybe when we install the desk, then we'll work on the cabinets at the same time. We've very pleased to have all of this done before Turkey Day, also.

Friday, November 18, 2005

Go Buckeyes!

We interrupt this regularly scheduled Houseblog to bring you a message from Ansley the schnuazer!
Go Buckeyes! Beat Michigan!

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Sewer Support, please!!!!!!!!

Aaron and I are gearing up for the basement remodel. We also got the final bill from the painter for the exterior work, and it was almost $17k!!!!!!!!!!!!! We know that this restorative work isn't cheap but... whew! That's a lot of money. Forgive us if you see tons of shots of our freshly painted exterior for the next couple of weeks.
So, we're looking for some ways to save money. We were planning to pay a plumber to relocate a sewer pipe from the middle of the laundry room floor to the corner of the laundry room where it will be used as the drain for a sink. Now, we are wondering if we can do this work ourselves. Aaron feels pretty comfortable renting a small jackhammer to break up the concrete around the pipe, and in the area for where it needs to go, but he doesn't feel so confident with the plumbing- how to connect to the old sewer pipe, how to angle the pipe so the water flows down into the sewer, etc. etc. Is this a job for a professional, or can we tackle it? If so, how? Google hasn't been very helpful, but maybe housebloggers can come to the rescue once again. PLEASE don't be shy- comment or email with any tips. You'll have our eternal gratitude, and if you live nearby we can trade a work day, even.