Thursday, March 18, 2010

WHEW!!! I’ve Been a Very Busy Girl!!

Well . . . . where do I start?!  In my last post I mentioned that we’d begun making our kitchen cupboards.  Well, that project snowballed into a much larger renovation!!  Things have been moving so fast and we have been working so hard to get things done before Chuck has to go back to work that I haven’t had time to make any posts, much less, even be on the computer!!

It all started after we removed a brick wall in the kitchen.  After tearing down all of the brick and drywall, my hubby decided to remove all of the drywall in the stairway leading downstairs.  There was an ugly swirl patterned stucco on it and we had talked about one day redrywalling the whole thing.  His thinking on the matter was, since we already have a mess, what’s a little more?  So, all of that drywall came down, too.



About a month before we started all of this, as we were sitting downstairs in our dark, dreary family room, we talked about one day possibly removing the walls from the lower half of the stairs and opening up the family room and the utility room.  Between the light from the door at the top of the stairs and the window in the utility room, we thought it would brighten up the family room a lot.

So. . . . . since we already had a big mess. . . . .guess what we did?  lol

IMG_2433(I guess I didn’t take a picture of the “before”.  This is after the stairway has been drywalled)

Besides removing the lower part of the walls, we also removed the wall at the bottom of the stairs on the right that leads into the utility room.

With the removal of the walls, some of the electrical wires and light switches had to be moved.  So. . . .since Chuck had to do that, he decided to run wiring over into the family room to places we had planned on putting recess lighting (some day in the future – along with a new drop-ceiling).  All of that wiring would be going to the light switch panel that he was installing, so that portion of the project would be done - all he would have to do was connect the wiring to the recessed lighting when we decided to install them.

After he removed a few of the old ceiling tiles to run the wiring, he got annoyed with all of the cable wires and phone lines that were dangling down in his way.  So. . . . he decided to take down all of the old tile and untangle and then coil up and tack all of the wires in place.


“You know, instead of putting all of that old ceiling tile back up, why don’t we just go ahead and tear down all of the old framework and put  up a new ceiling with the recessed lighting?!” . . . . Okay, honey!! . . . .

So many things were going on at one time and we have been so busy that I forgot to take pictures of the progress as it was happening.

Here is what we have done so far . . .IMG_2475

We framed out and drywalled an area for our washer,  dryer and laundry tub.  We removed the old cabinets above our washer and dryer and built shelves.  I painted the entire interior white.  We had a big double-door armoire standing where the red bench sits that held all of my power tools, sand paper, nails, bug sprays, cleaning supplies, etc.  It was a total disaster area!!  I went through everything and got it all organized and then put it on the new shelves.



This view is from standing on the stairs. As I mentioned before, we removed the wall/doorway at the bottom of the stairs the led into the utility room.  We extended the back wall – starting from about where the dresser ends – which still gives us a little area to come in and take off our shoes and hang up our coats.

I was lucky to have almost a whole roll of wallpaper left from when we had refinished our family room a few years ago!  I had just enough to finish the extended wall, plus the wall  in the new section that can be seen from the family room.  I wasn’t fortunate enough to have any of the border left, so I had to remove all of the existing border and then I repainted all of the walls.  The color that I used before is no longer made, so I chose “Mesa Tan” from Sherwin Williams.



My Mom and Dad are installing hardwood floors in their Great room and since their carpet was still like new, Chuck brought it home with him after he helped my Dad and brother remove it.  We had enough to do all of the family room plus the little area in the new section.  We ran a little short to cover all of the stairs, so we had to get creative.  We had enough to cover the stair treads, but not the fronts, so we cut 1/4” thick boards and will nail those to the fronts  (pictured above).  It’ll work for now and then in a year or two, we’ll have new carpet installed.  The cap pieces to the stairs and the front pieces aren’t nailed on yet – they need to be stained first. IMG_2479

This is the little area as you come in the back door.  We replaced our solid steel door with this 9-lite door.  What a big difference!!

Today, since the weather is suppose to be nice, I’m staining the bi-fold doors for the laundry area, the chair rail moulding, the window and door frame moulding, and all of the pieces for the stairs.  Then tomorrow, while Chuck is nailing all of the trim pieces on, I’m going to paint the back door and then install vinyl tile in the coat area and the laundry area. 

The only thing we’ll have left to do downstairs is the base board trim, but that’s going to wait until after my kitchen gets finished, which somehow got put on the back burner!!

Speaking of my kitchen. . . . . we have the wall cabinets installed, along with a new stainless steel over-the-range microwave, under-cabinet lights and my new punched tinware light that hangs over my sink.   We still have to put  the trim moulding on top, but that should be done by this weekend. The pictures I took and were going to post didn’t turn out. . . some were blurry and the others were so dark, you couldn’t even see my cupboards!!  I didn’t have time to take new ones and I wanted to get this post in since it’s been so long since my last one. 

I sure can’t wait until  everything’s done!!!  We have been living in total chaos for the last few weeks.   Most of my kitchen stuff was sitting in my dining room and even though I tried to leave out things that we used every day, I still found myself digging through boxes looking for things.  We had very simple meals like sloppy joes and french fries and spaghetti and meatballs. . . .things that were quick and easy!!  lol

My downstairs was all torn up and my rec room was a disaster area!!  All of the materials we used got stored in there!  And the drywall dust!!!!. . . .  As much as we tried to cover things up, it still seemed to find every nook and cranny in my house!  lol  I have been doing a lot of cleaning!! . . . . I think I have finally conquered it!   (I hope!!)

On Monday, Chuck and I are taking a well deserved day off and heading to Amish country.  We’re starting with breakfast at Rebecca’s Bistro and then stopping at my favorite antique mall along with a few of my favorite prim shops.  I have a loooong list of things I’m in search of to decorate my family room and kitchen!

I’ll be back sometime next week with more pictures of my family room completed and with some new decor!!  Also, better pictures of my kitchen!!


Until Next Time . . . . Kris



  1. Whew!...I am tired just reading about your remodel!...can't wait to see the rest of the progress!..enjoy the sunshine today!

  2. I'm so excited for your Kris. Everything is coming along great from what I can see. I can't wait to see everything done. Please post pics as soon as you can.

  3. That looks like something my husband would do, tear down one thing and notice the rest needs it too. It is looking good. I need to start clearing out my basement, we have the drywall done, years ago, but nothing else, so time to get moving.


  4. That looks like a HUGE undertaking! It's looking great. Hope everything goes smoothly for you!

  5. oh I can't wait to see it all finished and in all its what you have done so far..:)

  6. Everything looks great...anxious to see it when it finished...Love what I've see so far..

  7. Whew, I need a nap now!

    I know this is so exciting for you and I also know it will be beautiful.

    Can't wait to see it!

  8. Why is it one little project leads to a major remodel it is such a hassle during the mess but when it is finally done it is so nice it kinda seems worth it after all.Good luck with it show the end results with us.

  9. The drywall dust is something isn't it? Especially when it lands on something black:)

    Everything looks wonderful and I can't wait to see your kitchen!


  10. Dry wall dust is the absolute worse!!!!!!! You two are really getting into remodeling and... Oh Boy, it is going to be beautiful...especially with you doing the decorating, Kris! I can't wait to see it all. Good luck with the rest.


  11. OMG Kris, You and Your HB made an awesome job!. Can't wait to see more pictures. Everything looks nice.

  12. Hi Kris........good to hear from you! I just knew when you hadn't been posting or commenting that you were into some big time renovation!
    Can't wait to see all of the finished photos.
    Have fun in Amish Country.

  13. Wow you guys are awesome!! Thats such a lot of work..good for you, cant wait to see it all finished.

  14. Wow Kris! you and hubs sure are having some fun! it'll all be worth it and I can't wait to see the finished results!


  15. Hi Kris! You really have been busy! One project ALWAYS leads to another. It is true, that you might as well, as long as you've got the mess, but it does end up taking longer than planned. You'll be glad you did it all, when it's done though. Can't wait to see the kitchen. Enjoy your well deserved day off. I hope you find everything you are looking for.

  16. It looks awesome! How wonderful your hubby was able to help you do all that!

  17. Oh my goodness, Kris ... what an undertaking! It reminds me of the book "If You Give a Mouse a Cookie."

    Everything is looking fabulous and I can't wait to see more!

    Enjoy your restful outing on Monday and all of this gorgeous weather too...

  18. What a hard job, but so worth it, can't wait to see it all finished!

  19. Looking good Kris....sure don't envy you the work, but the outcome will be awesome!

  20. You guys are doing a great job. Can't wait to see it completed. Enjoy Amish country!

  21. I can see why you are busy. Everything will come together in the end. Enjoy your day off! I can not wait to see pictures of the final result.

  22. Kris,

    Where do you get your energy???? I love all your projects. Wow, this one was quite an undertaking. It is looking great. You and your husband are both so talented. I have really missed your posts. Look forward to seeing more, especially your kitchen.


  23. Looks wonderful You are so lucky to have a basement. We can't have them in Florida and really would love the extra space.

  24. What a large undertaking! If anyone can do it, it would be you and your hubby! It will be beautiful when you are done, and to think you did it yourselves! Can't wait to see it finished!

  25. Holy WOW, you have been one very busy girl!!! It's funny how one project turns out to be a total over haul...LOL. Everything is looking really nice and I like all your ideas. More light is always better.

    Can't wait to see your kitchen now...

  26. Hi--just reading your post exhausted me! I'm sure you'll be so excited when everything is done. We have a basement that we are working on too. Have a fun shopping day.

  27. All I can say is WOW, Kris! ;-)
    You two sound just like me and Ed! One project turns into many, but it will be so worth it when it is all said and done.

    Girl, I know exactly how you are feeling and what you are going through. I have been living it the last 2 years. We finished up the kitchen floors last weekend. Stop on over at my blog, I posted a couple pics this morning. Ed and I are taking a break too this weekend. Hope you two get rested up, and have fun shopping!

    Prim Blessings,

  28. Found you at Shirley's World - and wow - isn't it grand when one simple project leads to others more complicated than the first? You're tackling a lot at one time! In our kitchen remodel project, hubby was just going to build new cabinet doors - but THEN - he found live wires behind one cabinet, and to enclose them in a box, he needed to lower them, so that involved removing marble tiles, then countertop, and it got to be more and more involved. Now, we have to not only finish the doors, but install new countertopping, paint walls, build crown molding for the tops of the cupboards, and install a new sink! Its sure fun to think about having an almost completely new kitchen, but OOOOOH! The WORK! Cheers to YOU!

  29. I'm sure it will be drop-dead gorgeous once your done. Can't wait to see the pics.

  30. Kris - I can see why you have not been on the computer! WHOA!! You have accomplished so much and I just cannot wait to see it all done. I am almost jealous of all you and hubby accomplish but then again, I know the mess the drywall and plaster make. You do deserve a little trip to escape it all! Have a wonderful time!!

  31. Hi Kris,
    Oh my gosh you have been busy but look what you've accomlished! The changes so far are amazing and I can hardly wait to see your new kitchen! You are so lucky to have such a talented hubby and with your creativity and talent you make an awesome team. Oh boy do I know about dust. When our guy was doing the bricks around the pantry I had red brick dust in every nook and cranny too.(he was cutting the bricks in the garage and every time he came in he was surrounded by a cloud of dust) It has taken me weeks to find most of it and every so often I go to dust something and find more. We are going to empty the garage and wash the floors in there because the dust is still being tracked inside. Keep up the good work. Your house was already stunning but now it will be even more so. Hurry hurry, we can't wait much longer ;) Hugs, Loretta

  32. Hi there. First of all...even torn apart, your house is beautiful! And do I ever lust after your "mud room" area!

  33. I have missed your posts. Now I get why you're too busy. Your projects look great, and no doubt they'll be fabulous when all is done. We did extensive work on our house, but at least we weren't living here then. The mess is terrible. A day of fun seems like a nice reward after living with that!

  34. All I can is WOW!! Girl, glad you are getting a break because I am totally exhausted after reading all that you've done!! Isn't it so funny though how one thing leads to another? I am amazed at how much you have accomplished in such a short time! Can't wait to see more pics!

  35. AHHHH ! to be young again and have all your energy! It looks great and can't wait to see the kitchen and your shopping "finds". Have fun!

    Charlotte - no blog

  36. Your projects are so inspiring! Can't wait until the full reveal!


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