Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Friday, November 20, 2015

a porch, a primed interior and a question

We've lucked out with fairly mild temperatures for November in Vermont. This week the footings for the three season porch were replaced, hopefully preventing the previous heaving and dropping that happened with the frosts and melts. Oh, and by the way...the former sliding door that we had so much trouble with over the years? had been installed upside down. Can you say "do it yourself"? 

The old windows have been removed and the framing is done for the new ones, which will match those going across the view side of the house (minus the transoms). The siding will be feathered in, so that the entire front facade of the house will be our handsome falu red.
The three season porch had been a favorite place to sleep in the summer time, with our kids vying for "first dibs" on the space.  I'm thinking this space may become the heart of our home in nice weather!

The doorframe on the right hand side of the photo will accommodate a sturdy storm door, which will eventually open onto a small deck (DYI spring 2016).
The dry wallers finally left on Tuesday. The walls and ceilings have been sprayed with primer. The ceilings were also painted (after all the ceilings we painted in our CT house, we decided to pay to have this done...besides, they are nine feet high). 

When I walked in to the space at noon today, the floor protector had been pulled and the old oak floors had been swept. With the sunshine pouring in I began to see a real home rising out of the chaos. 

This long and narrow space will be the dining room, with plenty of room to tuck a variety of odd tables together, end to end (our version of a table with leaves). The brand new door on the right leads out to the three season porch. 
Here's a shot of the kitchen, looking from the front door. The "L" shaped countertop will fit into this corner, with the sink centered under the three windows. The *gas* range will be on the wall to the left. I think my rosemary plant may sit on the counter, right there in the sunny corner. 
One of the things we most wanted with this reno was a real mudroom. For a bunch of reasons, it just didn't work out. I asked the builder to move this old window up a bit. I have sketches for a well-organized corner, with pegs for hanging jackets, a bench to sit on while putting on boots and shoes, baskets for hats and mittens and a modest wood bin. This project will keep Peter and I busy on cold winter weekends. 

Our fabulous Home Comfort will be moved back in just to the right of the window. We're keeping the old, custom built front door. It's taken some abuse in the reno, but we hope it will recover well.

We plan to pull up the old carpet on the three season porch. I'm sure that Vermont winter temperatures would make vinyl flooring brittle to the point of cracking. We do NOT want to do carpet. Hardwood floors are not in the budget. I'm wondering about painting some plywood with decking paint. Do any of you have ideas or advice for an affordable solution? We would really appreciate your input, dear readers.

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend, whatever you'll be up to.

Friday, November 13, 2015

field trip!

We recently took a field trip to see the progress being made on our kitchen cupboards. Glen's workshop is an inspired space...well lit, organized and wood scented. Trained in Scotland, Glen spent years working on Nantucket and has adopted Vermont as his newest home. Lucky for us, Peter met him via work, and we are now looking forward to having Glen's beautiful work nestled in our new kitchen and bath. We asked him to find a source for local wood and he came through with flying colors. Red birch in the kitchen and curly maple in the bathroom.

We are tall people, and Glen has added a few inches to our bottom cupboards to bring the countertops up to a more comfortable height. Do you know how many years we have waited for this to happen???
I am actually looking forward to washing the first sink full of dishes without having to stretch my back every few minutes.  Such simple, simple pleasures.

My new best friend lives at Glen's place. Jasper is a fine shepherd who would chase a frisbee as many times as I would throw it. There are also two very fine cats that hang about the place.

If you didn't have access to a "real" kitchen for months on end what would you cook the very first time you found your way into your dream kitchen? Please discuss.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

balmy days

November days in Vermont in the high 60's? Unnerving, but wonderful for the second coat of Falu, spray painted on a few exterior walls today.
Sections of the house still need work, but the upper parts, which require the "manlift" got priority this week. Let's get that "manlift" off the invoice soon, shall we?
The drywall is finally up, and the taping and mudding will begin on Monday. The rooms are really beginning to take shape. Here you can see the living room and foot of the stairs.
The guest room is looking cozier, with its sloped ceiling and small proportions. The window looks north, and sits high enough to check for Northern Lights. This room will feature some sweet Vermont art and a bookshelf filled with work by local authors. There is some very special bedding that has been waiting for this room. I can't wait to pull it out and spread it on the bed and sigh. Simple pleasures.
The roughed in stairs rise up to the little hallway, where the sleeping/reading nook will be built around the window up there. 

The quest for interior wall colors has begun. Sometimes when I wake in the middle of the night, I see color swatches waving in my imagination. I wish I could wake up with the perfect colors all lined up, with the correct number of gallons noted for each room. Is there an app for that??? 

The waiting seems to be long. Cooking on a hot plate has lost its sense of adventure and juggling pots and pans in the bathroom sink is just plain boring. The tromping of workmen and loud radio music and late afternoon site clean-up are getting a little old...but patience has been my challenge all along these many years. I will persevere. The vision is getting closer to reality and that alone is worthy of celebration.

Hang in there with me friends, the light is at the end of the tunnel. I think I can see it.