Hey there friends, holy housing updates we have! We’re talking walls, plumbing, getting ready for wiring. Yeah, that. Also, thank you all who said such nice comments and to the girl who sent me a super sweet email about my last post on my anxiety. I honestly appreciate it. The comments totally humbled me. Also, you’re all awesome. So BOOM, there you go.
I’ve been in kind of a non-anxiety related mode where I just haven’t felt like sharing because everything is shared. At some point I’m almost positive we’re all going to get so sick of sharing we just retaliate into not sharing. Kind of like people got so sick of processed foods they are going back to CSA’s and whole foods. They are totally different topics but it just has to do (for me) with compromising too much of yourself sometimes, and you have to step back and re-evaluate. I started (by started, I mean for a few months now) thinking Instagram and Twitter diminished my writing desire because everything could pretty much be said in a snap of a photo. I realized I covered so much of what I would write in a post in just in way less words, and what fun is being concise?
A few honest questions:
- Has anyone else noticed what a total brain drain/waste of time Twitter is? I held out for a long time. And then I embraced it full tilt. And now I’m kind of like “eh…”. I deleted my Green Barn Soaps Twitter account because I never used it, and I haven’t been using my one for this blog much either lately.
- Instagram: I was pretty much using it for food. Food and dog photos. Then I realized my brain was always like “this is so pretty, instagram it!” and it struck me that I literally was thinking about whether I should share something or not pretty much all the time. Then it dawned on me that sometimes, just sometimes, the sun gleaming off the old corn stalks, or the beautiful blue sky at the farm on the ocean I go to sometimes maybe…just maybe…were just for me. That sometimes not everything should be shared. So I kind of stopped using Instagram as much too. I think I would rather just take photos, most of the time, for you guys with my nice camera and take the care to edit them and write a post about it.
Also, man…when you haven’t really written in a while it’s tough getting back in the saddle! I realized I definitely still wanted to write, I just didn’t really know how to approach it again. So…that’s what this is. Just a lot of words. So let’s get into the bulk of this and show some updates to the house.
With the new staircase in place, it was time to pull walls up. This is totally weird and surreal to see these walls finally coming into place and somewhat anxiety and excitement producing. For someone who isn’t akin to change (hah, surprise) seeing your house change in front of your eyes and seeing your future kids bedrooms come to fruition is completely and totally a mind blow. I don’t think I’ve wrapped my head around it all yet to be honest. I look straight ahead (of the couch I’m sitting on) and my house looks like my house, I look behind me and my house is starting to look like the house we’ve been talking about for over five years. Whhaatt?!
So, it all starting with framing lumber we picked up from Home Depot.
I lined the lumber up so Andy could easily find what he needed (it took more lumber than this, this was just round one) and then stepped back and took in one last view of the house without walls up. I remember thinking that this area would never be the same. There would be walls, a bathroom and someday kids. Oh man.
I look back on it now and think “ahh that just seems so simple and less messy” because now, it looks a little more like this with studs evverryywhheere.So, I’m going to try and explain what’s going on. The photo above is in the master bedroom. The framing directly in front of Andy is the bathroom. He’s standing where the closet will go. Actually, here’s a photo of the closet framed in.
From the other side is one of our kids bedrooms. In my head I’ve been knowing and waiting for this to be a kids room/nursery. I have to say though, now that it’s so real my heart gets palpitations just thinking about it. I feel a little more pressure to fill those rooms up with kids, and as much as I want that, it’s also terrifying. I think in general most people are rather scared of becoming a parent and having to be totally responsible for another little human being. By the same token, give me an infant and I will happily accept the drool all over me and not think twice about it. It’s just scary you guys, but NO I am not pregnant and no we are not trying yet. It’s just crazy to see the rooms that will someday house babies and eventually teenagers. Yep, my brain has already gone to teenagers, when we aren’t even trying for kids yet. I think it’s okay though to say that I’m kind of scared shitless to become a parent. I think I’ll be a good mom, I know how I am around kids, but it doesn’t make it any less of a scary and exciting prospect. We’re still a few years out from even trying. Thankfully after a long talk, my uterus and I have started cooperating and it no longer yells at me when I see a baby. Either that or I’ve totally repressed it and at some point I’ll be all BABY NOW. Only time will tell.
Okay, I think I missed writing you guys. This is really cathartic. How on earth could you get ALL OF THAT out of just an instagram photo? This is really how it goes for me though, and it feels good just writing it all out.
This is the view of the smaller upstairs bedroom facing the master bedroom. This is the closet, and yep, it’s pretty big. I didn’t get a photo of it, but there’s actually a ledge above the closet. Someday it may become some sort of reading nook for our kids (when they would be old enough to get up there safely with a ladder) or it will just stay an open storage area. It may seem weird to have it but the truth is with storage such a problem in the current house we really wanted to utilize every bit of space. The ledge will allow us some extra storage for “the giant stuffed animal I’m winning our daughter at the fair” as my husband put it.
This comment is cute for two reasons:
One – He talks about the rooms like we’re having a daughter someday, even though he’s terrified of having a daughter and says he wants boys because he knows how to handle boys. Girls? That means someday having to deal with the onset of PMS, serious hormones, and potentially boys. Boys touching our daughter. I don’t think he’d take that too well. In fact, I know he wouldn’t. I once brought it up and his face dropped and he looked at my dead serious and said “Stop. Stop. That will not be happening. I’m not having this conversation.” I truly tried not to laugh out loud and gave it my best attempt to be serious and change the conversation.
Two – We go to one of the big fairs here every single year. It’s an agricultural fair but it also has a typical carnival section. We don’t ever hang out/play games in the carnival section, we’re there for the agriculture part of it and the once a year love of fair food. The fact that he’s even thinking of playing one of those games, to win our daughter a toy, is absolutely adorable.
Okay point being, the ledge is there for storage or a reading nook someday, and the other point is that my husband wants a daughter but is so terrified of them that he’ll say he really wants boys. Even though he actually has potential names picked out for our daughters and we’ve never even talked about a boys name. I think either way we’ll both be totally and completely happy. I’m scared of having a daughter too, but I would love it. The idea of having a rambunctious boy tickles my feet too.
That was a huge diverge from the point of this post but these are all of the real things we talk/think about when we’re doing the renovations and for me all of the emotions/topics it stirs up. Some people might think renovating a home is just this build, but it’s emotional too. You see the first house you ever bought slowly going away and being transformed into the house you’ve dreamed of and the house your kids will know. It’s just this mind boggling thing. It’s likely slowly moving into a new home, it’s a bit of an in-between homes feeling.
This is the downstairs bedroom. I don’t get as much of the emotional pull with this bedroom as I do the upstairs one. I think it’s because the upstairs one will be the nursery from the start and it’s the spot that used to be our bedroom. This bedroom downstairs though will be so nice to have. For quite a while it will be the guest bedroom. It may at some point become Casey’s bedroom if he keeps living with us (which actually, he’s super easy to live and he helps clean the house, cook dinner and do dishes…while paying us rent, so who cares) – who knows. This bedroom also has a really nice sized closet in it.
To step back a minute, one of the things Andy had to do before framing was chisel all around the new staircase to make sure the wood was a certain depth. I honestly don’t know the exact reason for it, but it’s something about getting it flush for when we drywall. The easiest way to do this, and by easy I mean it’s still super labor intensive, was to do it by hand. He had to cut, and chisel out every. Single. Piece.The photos below aren’t when he’s done (as you can still see how messy it is). So much work. So So much labor.
All of these pieces were only a fraction of the wood he chiseled out. Winnie on the other hand was pretty sure this was an early Christmas because there were so many pieces of wood she could chew on. She picks up pieces of wood and “tosses” them at you to throw for her. As I write this I can see a piece of this wood underneath of a piece of furniture in the living room. We ended up burning a bunch in the wood stove, but Winnie sure had fun with them while they lasted.
Okay so let’s jump forward again now that everything is totally framed up.
Yeahhh boy. Here’s a little fact – I honest to God love plumbing. It is my favorite part of any project. I don’t know how to do plumbing very much but I really like watching it, and helping with it. Andy knows this and tries to include me, but at some point I just let him do his thing.
Today (Friday after Thanksgiving) Andy managed to rough in the plumbing for the shower and the toilet in three hours. He’s a machine, I’m telling you. I won’t say this was a piece of cake though. Imagine holding a right angle drill repeatedly above your head while drilling multiple holes. Also, a right angle drill has a heck of a kick to it. I tried drilling out the hole for the toilet and I couldn’t even keep it from wanting to pull me sideways. I eventually had to just give up and let Andy take over. I imagine at this point his arms are tired. There was plenty of swearing involved and I just tried to be supportive, mainly by putting all of the laundry away and picking up the house some, and helping him look for a hole saw that went missing and may still be MIA. Oh, and he did all of this with a headache and not feeling good.
That’s my man.
So, that’s the update housing update. Walls up, it’s totally surreal, and plumbing pretty well roughed in for some of the bathroom (we still have to do the plumbing upstairs, and rough in the sink, as well as attach everything to the basement).
At Thanksgiving yesterday, Andy gave my Dad the rundown on what he expects the timeline to be (even I didn’t know this, which was strategic so I just take things as they come and don’t get stuck on dates). Things might change but here’s what we’re hoping to do before spring, when we’ll have to refocus on the exterior:
- finish plumbing up the upstairs bathroom
- wire the entire addition
- drywall the entire upstairs, but leave it rough up in the second bedroom upstairs for now (no tape)
- finish the entire master bedroom so we can have one finished space we can retreat to
- drywall and tape up the living room and maybe lay flooring
- potentially change over the wood stove from it’s current location into the living room (dependent on if we lay flooring first, or what we decide to do for the hearth.
That should give us at least a couple (mostly) finished spaces that we can actually live in. I’m mostly looking forward to getting into a finished master bedroom, and being able to decorate. I’m also looking forward to the sun up there. It’s absolutely delightful in the afternoon, I just want to soak it up. Here in Maine, you never take the sun for granted and definitely not in the winter. It’s around for so few hours this time of year and to feel it so warm is rare too. I will take it anytime I can get it.
Speaking of that, my Pepere once told me that at some point in my life I would stop loving winters and just want to be warm. I didn’t quite believe him. You should always listen to your elders. I recently told Andy after the house is done we are saving our money to go on vacation somewhere warm every single winter with or without kids. He informed me as long as it’s not typically touristy, he’s in.