Sunday, July 16, 2017

the river house #15: it's moving time...

SO much has changed on the River House since I last updated!  And I really shouldn't be laying here blogging to you about it, but I've come down with a sinus infection from all of the dust this work has been kicking up, so I'm giving myself a few hours to slow down...

Where to begin.... well, we have walls now!  Drywall was a HUGE game changer.  I can't believe we sold our current house before we even had WALLS up in this home.  (Did I even mention we sold our house in 2 days with multiple offers?  Which is great and all, except when you are still renovating another house you're not ready to live in...) 

The timing has been nothing short of stressful, y'all.  Or maybe it's just EXCITING.  Adventurous, even!  Yes, adventurous.  We wouldn't life to be dull.

Somewhere in all of the chaos and stress, though, has been the rewarding feeling of seeing this project begin to take shape.  

Perhaps the MOST exciting day was the one when my kitchen cabinetry was delivered!  Months of planning, months of waiting, and they were finally here!!!



All of them.  Creamy, buttery yellow.  I ordered crisp white.

You know what that means.

Another MONTH of waiting.

And our move-in date was a month and a few days away.

Expectations had to be adjusted.  And re-adjusted.  Always re-adjusting.

Dirty job
The bright side of this project has been our students and friends who have helped us along the way.  We couldn't have gotten this far without 'em.

There is just something to someone literally entering into your MESS to help.

We'll be forever grateful.
Floor delivery!
The kids have done pretty well through the craziness of this summer.  I took it upon myself to sign them up for various camps and VBS weeks, so they're having a blast while we're able to get some work done.  They've got sweet friends next door at the River House, so they haven't missed a beat getting to play with them outside.  

The goal by our closing date (next week!) was to have the 1st floor finished and then be able to work on the top floor.  

Well, that's not going to happen. (readjusting those expectations)

So NOW the goal has been revised to get what needs doing in order to to hopefully earn a CO (Certificate of Occupancy), and then work as we can when we can.  A CO would give us permission to live on the 1st floor, not just store our stuff there.

So we need running water.  And before you can get running water, you've got to tile your bathroom floor... 

bathroom vanity I found on craigslist

I had our carpenters put up the original 1901 trim around the bathroom window.  And when there's a coat of white paint on there, it's really gonna shine.

Remember that sinus infection I told you about?  Hmm, could it be from being in this house?  We literally had to change the air filter every couple of DAYS at one point.

I really think hell is going to be filled with lots and lots of SANDING.  Sanding little crevices like stair rails for hours and hours on end, covering yourself in black dust.  (It'll all be worth it, right?  Can't wait to see this finished in all its glory.)

I found a "new" old front door at an architectural salvage shop in Richmond that was similar enough to the original door of the house.  I had a contractor put some additional trim on it in order to match it even closer.

Then I painted it a slate blue color for now.  It'll change once we paint the rest of the exterior... maybe next summer?

 But for now, I'm liking my blue door.
 And no post about the River House is complete without a picture of my 2nd home for the summer: Lowe's.

Or as we call it, Slowe's.
So one month later, we had the flooring AND the cabinets stacked to the ceiling of the Great Room.  
And last week was when it became an HGTV show-- contractors swarming the house.... the trim guys, the cabinet hanging guy, the floor guy, the electrician, and the plumber (Marc), all working like crazy. 

And I'm running to Slowe's constantly for all of them.  Ugh.  I guess this adds "general contractor" to my resume?

Here's a quick glimpse of the front room of the house, which will be Marc's office and the most historical of the renovation.  We restored the original brick fireplace, used the original trim, we'll be refinishing the floors, etc.

So when I found this super huge and fun historic chandelier on craigslist, I thought it would make a statement and still stay in the right period.
Here's another glimpse at a beauty I found for the front entryway...  oh how I love light fixtures...
The floor guys, the trim guys, and the cabinet-hanging guys were literally dancing around one another last week.  And since the first cabinet catastrophe put me so far behind, my installer was kind enough to set my base cabinets FIRST in order for the countertop folks to come and get their templates made as quickly as possible.  

So that brings us to this past week!  A CO (Certificate of Occupancy) requires handrails around stairways: 

new handrails

industrial pipe handrail
One of my Pinterest-inspired projects was an iron pipe handrail going down to the basement.  On the river out my back window is a historic factory that makes industrial black pipe, so I thought it would be a fun and fitting tribute to make a pipe handrail.    (Not as easy as it looks... first I stumped my husband, myself, then I stumped the contractors, and after 4 trips to Slowe's, we finally got it and all my contractors were so impressed with it.)

So here's where things stand now with the floors in!   I only had to return 4. MORE. CABINETS.

Because the designer didn't account for my window trim (grrrrrr... these people... ).

At this point, though, my expectations are so readjusted that almost nothing will bother me.

I'm reeeaally excited about the special custom kitchen hood I'm designing.... can't wait to show you what I'm doing!

We've got weeks and weeks of caulking and painting ahead of us.  But I'm not going to think about it.

This project is making me go gray!!!  Haha, that's just paint.  But seriously, though.  It's been entirely too stressful.  I wasn't sleeping more than 5 hours a night, so I found myself crying in my doctor's office last week.  Sometimes meds are a wonderful gift from Jesus.

So what's crazy is that as of 3 days ago, we're now LIVING in the basement!!!  Closing on our other house isn't until next week (the 28th), but Marc will be out of town that week, so we wanted to get settled and into a routine before he left.  

So it's this week that we need to pack our ENTIRE HOUSE because we're moving all of our stuff next Saturday!  (Is this as stressful to read as I'm feeling typing it?)

Our little abode in the basement
So this was our first night camping set up!  We brought over the essentials.  The kids are sleeping on beds and Marc and I tried the pull out couch one night.....

....theeeeen we moved our bed over the next day... ha ha  

There are advantages of moving one block away... easy to run back for things you forgot to bring over.

This is my kitchen for the next length of time, you guys.  I am missing that dishwasher... 

But believe it or not, I think we're doing better being over here.  We're all sleeping well, and though it's small, at least it's organized.  I have to tell myself it's not for forever.  I can do this.  

The semester is quickly approaching and Marc will be getting back to RUF full time.  We had hoped we'd be much farther along, and we really could use an army right about now.  We'd covet your prayers (and help) this week as we try to wrap things up at the other house and get everything moved over here. 

To be continued....

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