Bathroom guts

Operation new master bathroom has officially begun. And like all good projects, it begins with tearing up what was there before. Here’s the state of the bathroom, looking towards the East, after the first day of construction. I especially like the remnants of our atrocious upstairs heater lying on the pile of debris.

And here’s looking West, towards what will eventually be a bathtub with a window above it. Can you picture it yet?
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Bathroom is a go!

After months of design and delay, this week we received the green light on our master bathroom remodel! Tuesday – permit approved. Wednesday – contract signed. Today – Internet shopping spree. Nothing like buying toilets and bathtubs and plumbing fixtures and hoping they turn up in time and with all parts account for. This weekend – clear out the upstairs. Monday – construction begins.

For old times sake, here’s what we found when we moved in.
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The balcony that this blog forgot . . .

Wow, it’s been more than a year since our last post. Back then we left you with a cliff-(actually balcony)-hanger, as we tore off the sagging balcony that had haunted us since day once. With the passage of time, I don’t think I can provide a detailed account of the construction that followed, but needles too say we have a new balcony. Here’s a picture from just days after it was finished.

Since then it has weathered a bit, gained some snazzy red chairs, and become a part of our daily life. It’s been fabulous, worth every penny. On sunny days there is nothing like hanging out on the balcony looking at our view. The cat perches on the railings, the toddler runs his mini bulldozers up and down its length, and we often leave the door open just to enjoy the breeze.

We’ll dig out the construction photos again someday. In the meantime, care to have a drink and watch some fireworks?

The big tear down

Almost two years since we bought the house, and our balcony project is finally beginning!

From the moment we moved in, we knew that we would eventually have to replace the balcony. This has been one of the great features about our house — the fabulous view is not something you can just order up and install. But it’s also been an eyesore and a downright hazard due to a poorly built extension, years of water damage, the resulting dry rot, and a dangerous railing.

So this past week it went bye-bye. The old balcony has been torn apart in preparation for a serious facelift. Stayed tuned for a grand unveiling in a few weeks.

Goodbye old balcony!

(If you want a sneak peek, take a look at our recent post about new porch railings. The balcony will match!)

Off the rails

Following our lame HGTV debacle (chronicled here), we decided to go ahead and make a few frontyard improvements on our own dime. First up, trying out some new railings on our stairs. Now our poor grandmothers have been subjected to our inadequate rail situation before. We apologize for the challenges involved in entering our humble abode.

Our sad absent stair rails.

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Rockin’ the frontyard

There is a time for all things. Once, it was the era of Flintstone rock facades. I grew up in a house with such stonework, specifically around the front door and surrounding the fireplace. With such prominent placement — adorning the figural face and heart of the home — that rock had to be good stuff.

Our rock is not the good stuff. Why do we have rock at all on a fifties house? Because someone decided that it need to be a bit groovier a few decades later. So the house got a facelift. But instead of using real rock, the new look was built out of little more than concrete and mortar, slapped on and painted up to look appropriately primitive. We’ve been dreaming of tearing it off since we laid eyes on the place. Continue reading