Friday, November 21, 2008

Putting the vain in vanity, maybe.

Our guest bath is small.  Not super small, just your average vanity, toilet, tub/shower small.  Which is fine.  Because we don't ever plan on using it.  
If we could build a house that was 2,000 sq. ft. and was a one bedroom, one bath, we would.  Except we would have to die there and then burn it down around us because nobody in their right mind would buy that house.  
So, we have two spare bed rooms and an extra bath for resale purposes only.  (Which is moot if you think about it, considering that Brad declares that this will be the last house we ever own.  We'll see.)
So, to help with the tight bathroom, we designed it to have a pocket door.  I have always thought those were cool.  It's like a wall that appears when you need it then hides the rest of the time.  OK, so maybe they aren't that cool, but still, I wanted one.
We went to the Garage Sale Outlet and found this little beauty.  Super cute!
It was only $300.  The others are a bit more, but they also came with a faucet.  Which, I have been told are crap.  If you get a vanity from there, be prepared to replace it.  Instead, I found a hardware guy on Ebay who is pretty great.  I bought all three bathroom sink fixtures from him for only $54 each.  (Search Dynasty Hardware on Ebay if you are interested)  They are sturdy and a really nice color – oil rubbed bronze.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Lots and lots of wood

The framing started a little later than we would have hoped.  The foundation took a few extra days, so where our plumber had been scheduled for monday with tuesday inspection.  The rain caused it to be install on Friday with inspection on the following Monday.  That would have left the copper exposed over the weekend and well, we weren't having that.  So, almost a week late, the foundation was finished.

But framing moved ridiculously quick.  This was after only one day.

After two days.
After four days.
And they would have finished on the fifth day, but they ran out of the techshield roofing material.

Friday, November 14, 2008

Let there be light!

Today, we picked out all of our windows.  We want BIG.  BIG.  BIG windows.  With lots of light.  So for the two in the front of the great room, the one in the dining, and the one off the back of the master, we went with six foot by six foot picture windows topped with a six foot by two foot transom.  No panes, just solid sheets of beautiful glass.  
And then, just in case there was a tiny bit of light not making it's way into the house, we opted for a sliding glass door to the deck and french doors off the master.  There are even windows in our garage.  (Which of course if more of outside aesthetics rather than a light issue.)
And then he wanted to know about the front door.  Well, we had picked out a rather boring one from Lowes.
No, he insisted, he had something amazing.  And he called it the 'St. Charles."  Which of course made me go, "OOOOOh." even-though I hadn't seen it.  So, we met up with one of his associates at National Home Center and he showed us this:

The St. Charles.  It's so pretty.  I could pet it.  Sadly, we had designed the house with a single door and [frankly] could not afford the double door anyway.  So, we should have one of these beauties sitting on our porch in the near future.  (Note, they also have this double set up with an arched transom that is worthy of having a choir stand there to sing just when people approach your door, for a tidy little sum of 6K.  Also, not in our budget or design.)
But, for roughly $900, we have a solid mahogany door with glass (aka beautiful light) and gorgeous iron work.

Friday, November 7, 2008

A good foundation

The foundation began the day after my uncle cleared the lot.

They dug out the footings  and poured the concrete.  (Sorry for the blurry image, I was still learning how to master the iPhone.)

From there, rows of bricks were added to build up the back left corner of the house (the master) and bring it up at least two feet at the highest point of the dirt.  The slope of our property was a little more than the surveyors said, so we had to wait for more cinder blocks to bring it up to the final height (which is about 7 feet tall off the back!)

After that, donnafill was poured into the blocks and stamped down.  Donnafill (yes that's how it's spelled) is the by-product of crushing granite rock.  So inside the cinder block base, under the concrete is granite.  This foundation is not going anywhere.

Finally, the concrete was poured.  This has to cure for one day before we begin framing.

Saturday, November 1, 2008


Can you believe that all these little trees were cleared with just this little machine and a chain saw in one day?  (And at 25% of what my builder estimated)