May 7, 2013

construction progress: week 26

sorry for not posting last week...things were down to the wire and i was a VERY busy lady trying to pack up my rental house and get it cleaned. not to mention the fact that we MOVED!!
yes, indeed we did.
honestly, i don't know of many things that can wear a person out like moving!
(it. is. the. WORST! seriously---this is the 13th time allen and i have moved and i swear it never gets easier.)
anyway, we are finally IN our new house and i cannot wait until the boxes are cleared enough to share some pictures!
but first, here are the miracles that happened in the last week of construction:

we finally installed the floors in the powder room and office nook.

we went with option B. (the cheaper and easier option. that seemed to always be the theme as we got closer to the end!)

our original plan was to lay a checkerboard floor in the powder room and herringbone in the office, but it all came down to time. (we ran out.) so, hopefully sometime in the future i can stencil the floors.
i was just glad to see the floors DONE. installing hardwood is not easy. (more on that in another post this week!)

one last look at the finally clean main floor

the hardwood floors were sanded...

(we were planning on finishing the floors ourselves up until a few days before the floors HAD to get finished, but as luck would have it, we were able to find someone to do it for us and still stay on budget!)

after the first round of sanding, a coat of filler was applied...

 this helps to fill in any gaps, holes or knots.

then, the floors were sanded again, vacuumed, and the first coat of stain went on.

as you MIGHT be able to tell from the pictures, we opted to go with minwax dark walnut!
i loved all of the votes, and i was surprised to find that the were just about split evenly between dark walnut and provincial. we decided we wanted something a little bit different than what we have done in the past, so we chose dark walnut. i am SUPER happy with it! it is still very warm, and not so dark that you can "see" everything.

 meanwhile, OUTSIDE....
 more grading was done in the back yard, front yard and driveway.

 the front/side retaining wall was completed and the front yard was back filled around the wall and leveled.

 gravel was brought in to prepare the driveway concrete getting poured.

the sidewalks were also prepped for concrete.

the gravel had to be raked and leveled.

 there always seemed to be 3 pieces of heavy machinery and at least 2 trucks parked in front of the house the entire week!

the forms for the sidewalk and driveway were set.

and my husband designed the front steps to cantilever out so that when the forms are off, there will be space to lay stone under the concrete, which will help the steps to tie into the house and give the entry a more formal look.

back on the inside....
 after two coats of stain, two coats of polyurethane were applied.
don't freak out....the floors wont always be this shiny!

 at this point, the floors couldn't be walked on for 30+ hours, so we were crawling into the basement
through a window and walking up the stairs to get a look at the floors!

isn't it pretty??
it smelled terrible...the fumes were enough to knock you over, but it sure looked good!

 this is a look at the floors after they finished curing! 

 and another peek, taken through the garage door hole.

 FINALLY, on the outside....
 a monster concrete truck and a huge crew poured the sidewalks and driveway. this was taken at about 8:30 in the morning...the activity in front of my house was absolutely insane!

 first, the concrete was dumped...

 and then smoothed. it was pretty mesmerizing to watch!

a couple hours later, they were all done!
the concrete had to cure for a few days before we could drive on it, which presented a little bit of a challenge when it came to moving! we had to park the truck on the street, and everything had to be carried into the house. (we did manage to bring a load of some larger stuff before the concrete was poured, which was great.)

a look at the finished retaining wall and back yard.

 we also had to put in some irrigation pipes...

a look at the finished sidewalks...

 and the front steps.
 the forms on the front steps actually have to stay on for over a week, so the stone under them will be laid in the next week or so.

the front of the island.

things really started feeling "real" when the appliances showed up!

we chose separate freezer and fridge units and i couldn't be happier!
i am thinking of writing a post on the fridge/freezer....maybe later this week.

anyway, the plumbers came back an installed the powder room and hooked up all the plumbing fixtures. having running water in the house was SO nice! not to mention the fact that we don't have to
use the port-a-john that has been camped out on our sidewalk for 6 months any more!
thank goodness.

more work was done on the stone veneer for the front retaining wall...

and then we MOVED.
here i am, taking a break from cleaning and packing at the rental house.
it took 3x longer to pack than i anticipated and at least 4 x longer to clean.
i am SO glad it is OVER.

i really wanted to get to the new house and take some nice pictures of the inside, but the two days before we moved were completely CRAZY. there was not a minute during those days when i wasn't running around packing or cleaning. i also wanted to have an open house so people could walk through, but we just ran out of time.

things are still a little hectic. there are quite a few things that are not done...
for instance, we don't have a stove/range, so cooking is a little interesting. we also don't
have our closets installed or door hardware, but i would rather be camping out here
missing a few things than anywhere else in the world!

stay tuned for more updates!


  1. Everything looks perfect. A lot was done last week. I like your idea about the fridge freezer. Your floor color looks like what we chose for our floors so now I feel assured in my decision seeing that you did the same. I am so excited that you get to have your very own house after waiting patiently for a few years! But your decorating the house once you move in will be the icing on the cake!!

  2. This has been so exciting to follow. Thanks for the updates and pictures. And congrats on your new home! Moving is exhausting but at least you're in the last stages.

  3. Congratulations! It looks amazing.

  4. Congratulations on your new home. Everything is beautiful. I have enjoyed watching your dreams come to reality.

  5. Autumn, it's been really fun watching your house be born over the last 26 weeks! The floors, the island, the kitchen faucet, the stone veneer….it's all beautiful and I hope you and your family love living there!

  6. congrats on the move. i can't wait to see how you decorate the house! it's been so fun watching all the progress!

  7. Congratulations!How exciting to finally be in your new home!Can't wait to see all the decorating you have planned.It is awesome!

  8. Hooray for you guys! We are so happy for you and can't wait to see it all in person! Take it easy and don't over work yourself!:)

  9. It is all so fabulous! We also built a home on a hillside a few years ago. The amount of work and money in retaining is incredible! We did most of it ourselves over 4 years (our lot is huge) and am so glad we are finished. I can't believe how quickly yours came together. (although I'm sure it doesn't feel that way!) I always look forward to your posts! Thanks for sharing.

  10. Wow! How amazing is your home. Thanks for sharing.

  11. Congratulations! Your new home is beautiful. I agree, no matter how many times we've moved, it never gets easier. I swear no matter how organized I try to be, it is still absolutely stressful when it comes down to the actual move! I'm so glad that is behind you and that you can enjoy your new home!

  12. Congrats on being in! Having moved about 22 times, I feel your pain about moving. We're looking at having to move from this apartment next month and even that is making me groan. Your home looks so great and will only get better once you get settled in. :)

  13. Congrats, love watching the progress.What paint colors have you chosen?