Archive for February, 2014

The kids’ cards to their classmates this year:

Happy Valentine’s Day to you!

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The house is still keeping us busy! I feel like things are taking so long and that we haven’t accomplished much until I go to put a blog post together. I look back at our progress, and it is a good motivator. I am thankful for that because honestly, some days I need it.

I am loving the snow days. It is the only time I am able to bathe my kids and catch up on life. The pictures that I am showing you in this post are absolutely terrible. I am not taking the time to take good pics. Just quick iPhone shots to document our progress and we then start in with the next project.

The month started out with our focus on the kitchen. We removed all old track lighting so that we could paint the ceiling.

The tile was removed from the countertops. We were not fans of the grouted tile. When wiping it down, the tile got wiped down, but it was difficult to get to the grout. We wanted it to feel clean and a place where the kids could do homework without having dips in their paper.The cabinets to the right of the sink we decided to remove.
We also got rid of the old backsplash. Tater kept the animal tile to use somewhere in the barn. ๐Ÿ˜‰ They are cute, aren’t they?!? I just didn’t want them in the kitchen. ๐Ÿ™‚

Our ceiling before painting:Ceiling after:

Next came the stairs…
Here is a before shot and the taping process.
We did this project on a weekend where there was a huge snow storm. It made us get this done. It took awhile. We packed up food and stayed here the entire day. Here are the stairs drying…
The stairs actually scare us. They are not very wide and our feet do not fit on them when going down. We are debating whether to put a runner down the middle in case of falls. Do you think that would help or make the stair space where feet are placed smaller? Any advice would be appreciated! ๐Ÿ˜‰ย Okay, so back to the kitchen. We had to prep to get ready for our painters. I spent 5 days scraping and sanding off 3-4 layers of sticky contact paper in all of the kitchen cupboards and drawers. This was probably my least favorite job yet. The drawers smelled really bad. The contact paper had hair and food crumbs stuck in-between each layer. I had bleeding hands and sore fingers by the time I was done. Humorously (or not so much), I recently found a shelf I had missed 3 weeks later. I wanted to puke.
Window trim ย and kitchen cabinets painted!Can lights being added to bedrooms and getting ready for other items to be painted.

We have an entire set up ready… to turn things from brown to white. (built-in shelves, doors, stools, end tables, fireplace, game cupboards, craft cabinets, remaining kitchen shelves…). That painting will happen sometime in February. A painter gave us a tip and said to attach shims to the shelves and doors and set them accordion style to help keep them up while painting. Brilliant!
Flooring is still going in.
We decided to go with a concrete countertop. It was a cheaper alternative and something we decided to try out on our own. We will have to let you know how it turns out! I am loving it better than the tile already! Any sealing tips??? Send them our way! ๐Ÿ™‚
We did the small area by the stove first to see how it would do. We obviously didn’t think things through at first because this was something we should have done before the kitchen painters came, but we ran out of time. As the counter was being smoothed out, I kept wiping the drips off of our newly painted cabinets. We also had to make a form to hold the concrete. That is taken off here in the picture below, but now you see where we have some touch up painting to do. Wet cement drying below…Round 2 came another night. We tried to get an earlier start, but that didn’t work out when the first batch we mixed up seemed a bit rockier than before. We had bought a different brand of concrete. So before even starting, the guys went out and picked up another 15 (80 lb) bags. Thankfully we had our amazing brother-in-law helping us that night… or it wouldn’t have gotten done. He got us a pick-me-up treat at McD’s at 11:00pm and hung in with us until 1:00 AM. Tater and I were still smoothing out the countertop until 4:00AM.ย Thankfully the kids have been sleeping great wherever we lay them down.ย 
We try to drive separate during the weeknights so that Tater can stay later to work at the house, and I can get the kids to bed for school the next day. We drive together during the weekend and call it a late night sometimes. Transferring the kids to another house and bed awakes them and sometimes they end up being hungry at 1:00 AM. One of our “midnight” snacks…Okay terrible pic… but I forgot our little helper. He was in charge of pounding and vibrating the sides to release any air bubbles.ย Part 2 drying. Do you see I got smart and covered my lower cabinets this time? ๐Ÿ˜‰ Also, by this time we have added our knobs and switched out all our hinges. I spray painted the existing knobs but purchased new hinges.
This month we also have been very busy painting our walls.
We removed a beverage center when we first got the house, and that left a big area in the floor with no wood. We wanted to keep the same wood in that hallway, so we ripped out the wood from the small bathroom nearby and used it to fill that area. (Thanks Share for that tip! It looks great!) This bathroom is getting the left over tile that we are using in the other part of the house.New tile laid.Kids doing the chores out in the barn. Feeding the chickens and our new pet kitty named Shadow. (Thank you Z. family!) ๐Ÿ™‚If they are not helping us, the kids find ways to entertain themselves. I was painting the other day and went to check on them. We had recently installed our shower base. They were throwing balls down the drain hole to the floor below. They would take turns going down to catch the balls in the basement.
The end of the month was plumbing. Another one of my “not so fun” jobs to help with.ย Tater wanted me to hold a pipe he was cutting so I climbed up on the ladder and did my very best to grab it when it dropped. I got it! I was so happy with myself and as I climbed down the ladder with this large pipe, I heard a big splash. Tater said to me, “Keep it level!” I told him that I didn’t know anything would be in it and he said, “neither did I!” We laughed as we realized that I just had spilled SEWER water all over the floor!! Oh the adventures of renovating! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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