Sunday, October 30, 2011

Girls Weekend, Framing, and more!

So much has changed on the addition in just a few days! Yesterday Phil and Andrew assisted with framing the floor up. Today while Phil took a break and played with us ladies (Mom and Gramma were here on a girls weekend), the framers came back and added walls! It's amazing how the plotted out rooms and closets seemed so small when just shown on the floor (2D), yet once the walls were framed, everything became normal or big seeming! I guess 3D is better!
Mom, Gramma, & I stayed at the Artic Club Hotel all weekend, which was super comfy and cozy and has a great historical atmosphere. We had a busy weekend full of great meals (Circa, Portage Bay Cafe, Brouwers Cafe, Plum Bistro, & Endoline Joes), good friends, touristy and non-touristy locations and activities. On Saturday, after a fun ladies brunch, we rode the Ducks! I don't know how they do it, but they manage to get everyone singing and dancing and waving to people passing by, even at 11 in the morning with no alcohol involved! The rest of the weekend included the Theo Chocolate Factory Tour, cute stores in Fremont, visiting family and friends, walking around downtown Seattle, and a trip to the Museum of Glass and the Tacoma Art Museum.
It looks like this week will have to be a lot more work than play though, in order to finish prepping the rest of the kitchen to be redone. :-( Bye bye dishwasher, large sink, and stove/oven for a while!
Anna, Cassie, & I at Portage Bay Cafe

Susan, Cassie, & Mom on the Duck Tour

Iconic Seattle

Only photo of Mom, Gram, & I on our girls weekend!

Mom, Phil, & Gramma with Chihuly Glass chandelier above

Bridge of Glass

Dia de los Muertos exibit at Tacoma Art Museum

walls framed! Starting to look like an addition!

This will be our master bedroom! See the three windows that will go above our bed?

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Faster than you can say Remodel!

Kurt and his guys have been working so fast! It feels like magic, since I've been working late each night and come home to huge progress in the backyard! I haven't even seen one worker all week, yet Phil has taken these photos so you all and I can enjoy! The foundation is pored and I think Phil said that they are going to start framing it up already tomorrow! I can't believe how quick they are!
The framed up foundation walls

detail view


Is that a dog in the crawl space!?

better perspective



this will be the master bed & bath side
I know I said it before, but I'll say it again! I can't believe how fast they are working! They didn't even lose time after the sewer pipe sprung a leak after the digging day! Phil and Andrew worked last Sunday to patch up the old pipe and then Kurt came in and switched it out for a new pipe.

assessing the situation

Cassie very seriously watches them assess the situation

boys just like any excuse to play in the mud!

the old sewer pipe
new sewer pipe

It's all the little things that count

I have somehow neglected to post some of the design decisions we have made already. We have always known that we wanted hardieplank (which every-time I did a Google search for the website, I accidentally typed in Frank Hardie, of the Hardy Boys mystery books, instead of James Hardie, maker of siding!). It took us a while though to figure out paint color. Initially, we really wanted to go with either a green or a light gray color for the house, but since it is less expensive to get siding pre-painted, we limited our options to those that are available in the Pacific Northwest on the Hardie website. After a few days of tossing around the idea of a blue house, we have decided upon Iron Gray. Iron Gray horizontal siding on the whole house, with Cobblestone shingles in the eaves of the front, since our roof line is getting a face-lift too.
Iron Gray for the siding

Cobblestone color for the shingles in the front eave


Last weekend, I had to decide upon our window brand. I thought we were going to go with Anderson windows, since my parents have them and they seem to be pretty nice, but when I went to a showroom, I didn't like the way the latch would show from the outside looking in. Instead, we are going with Milgard windows, since they have this silly little thing called SmartTouch window locks, which aren't as obvious from far away. I also felt good about the decision since Milgard is a local company and they have a lifetime warranty on the windows.
Milgard smarttouch system

We are still working on selecting our main doors. Doors are so expensive! I wish I could just find the type I want at Second Use or Earthwise (these amazing second hand stores for building supplies), but then there are all kinds of things to consider like insulation in the door, pre-hung, etc. Here is the type that we would like:
without the side windows, since our entryway is not that large! I love that dental shelf though! Look at it! So beautiful!
If it didn't feel like copying our neighbors one block away, I would love to have a green door with our gray house!




















I am yearning for a Dutch Door. Again, I can't believe how much money they are! But, seriously...look how perfectly homey and wonderful they are! Can't you just imagine children playing peek a boo from behind them and Charlie laying on a warm kitchen floor with the breeze freely flowing onto his little floppy ears? I can!
Dutch door for the back door? I think so!

See Charlie's friend likes it!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Fun little decisions

Ok, so it is way past my bedtime, but I can't stop fantasizing about our kitchen to be! I have already decided on white cabinets, an island, some kind of paperstone like countertops, and the exact kind of hardware. Now it is just a matter of finding all of these within our budget. Our friend Tyrell, has an amazing custom cabinetry company, but unfortunately it looks like even with his great deal, he will be above our price range for the kitchen. I hope we can hire him for the nook and other signature pieces at a later date. Anyways, so now I have been searching for inspiration for our kitchen and came across a couple thoughts. I have been so set on the white porcelain farmers sink (or apron sink), but then found this picture (and have seen one at the Second Use re-purposed store) and think that this larger style could be cool too.
smaller apron sink
larger apron sink
 I am also debating about the stove. I'm sure Phil will nix my new idea in the morning, but how cool would it be to incorporate as many design elements from the time period of our house (1949-post war)? Now I'm debating about an awesome new stove/oven with hood or what about one of these amazingly beautiful restored O'Keefe and Merritt range/ovens?
totally new burner/stove to the right
amazing restored 1950's stove/range

Thoughts? And...goodnight moon.

The Weekend: Part 2

Who said remodel's are all work and no play? Luckily that is not the case in this phase of our project. We had enough time to notice the little things around the Sound, like mushrooms sprouting up like crazy, leaves changing colors and falling, the sunshine peeking through the clouds in just the right way, and we finally took it upon ourselves to check out a couple of Seattle's breweries with my in-laws, Cassie & Andrew.
Elysian in Capital Hill was ok...the nachos were not that good, the waitress was super slow, and yet the beers still tasted yummy. Fremont Brewing Company on the other hand, was awesome. Such a cool location and atmosphere with lots of yummy beers and free pretzels. On the way home we stopped by the Ballard locks, but realized that the salmon stopped running a few weeks ago.
perfectly fallen leaf with Seattle dew drops on our collection of pumpkins and sqaush

the bits of sunlight poking through perfectly onto our front landscaping

never noticed the seeds on our Japanese maple out front

Andrew with new style: At Elysian Brewery

My thinker: Elysian Brewery in Capital Hill

Isn't my sister-in-law the cutest!?

That's more like it! Tasting at Fremont Brewery


Nothing like a hipster on a keg seat...

Ballard Locks

The best surprise was that today I found my old throw back 9ers jacket that I've been searching for, for almost 2 years! So excited! And I get to bust it out in two months for the Seahawks Niners game here!

As if my awesome jacket wasn't enough, the guy threw in a pack of Yo MTV trading cards! haha. I can't decide if I should open them to see who is inside or keep them closed as a collectors item. Thoughts?

Let the Excavators Begin!

Yesterday was Day 1 officially of our remodel (not counting all the time spent with our architect in design phase, not counting getting permits, not counting getting financing, or time spent with the contractor planning the budget or the timetable. Also not counting all the deconstruction and prep work that Phil has been doing.). Kurt, our contractor, and his 2 excavator guys (young guys around our own age or younger and one earned brownie points for wearing a Giants sweatshirt even though apparently he's not into baseball), along with his 14 year old nephew, Jorgen, arrived around 8am to begin digging dirt. I was amazed at how quickly you can see progress! They brought in an excavator machine (or for those of you who know it from the children's book, Are You My Mother, it's the SNORT machine) and a bobcat. While three or four of the guys stayed out back digging, one of the guys, Matt, the framer, came in to discuss the plan for framing. He went on and on about how he's going to need to get at the ceiling and the wall in the current bathroom and office and as he discussed this plan my heart began racing (Oh no! Our plan to keep living normally in our current part of the house is blowing up! Now we won't even be able to shower for a time or use our only toilet?!) and my ears were ringing with the sounds of a cash register (cha-ching, cha-ching, cha-ching) for every new little change in our plan that he described. As I began giving Phil the evil eye, with eyebrows raised as high as they can go, trying to will him to stop saying, "yea...yea, sounds good man, we'll figure it out. Do what you gotta do." Matt finally says, while stooped over the official architectural plans, "Oh wait. Maaayyybe we don't need to do that. It looks like we don't need that truss to go all the way through there." At that point I released a lot of stored up stale air loose from my tense stressed out body and decided I needed to get out of the house. I went to the window showroom to figure out which windows I want and then took Charlie to our unofficial dog park.
The dog park was one of those amazing moments that had me loving the Northwest and the people here so much. I met these wonderfully friendly people that live in our neighborhood. Mark (works for REI) and Erika (a pharmacist at UW), and their daughter and dogs, Cheeto and Disco. The three of us, along with another local woman (works for Sound Transit) talked all about the dogs, the weather, and the approach of Viaductopolis (the Viaduct...SR-99...is finally being torn down and it is going to be a huge inconvenience and a traffic nightmare). We talked about each others careers and companies, each of our remodel projects, and more. All the while the five dogs were chasing each other like crazy, playing ball, and finally after almost an hour, laying around happily panting with exhaustion. It is moments like those, so unexpected and pleasant, that I just love West Seattle & the Northwest.
I returned home to find unbelievable amounts of progress in the backyard. I made lunch for Phil and I, since the rest of the men were working through lunch to try and finish before the Husky game started at 5. I ventured out one last time to the public library where I relaxed and read until some noisy and smelly people sat down next to me. I took it as a sign to get back to see the ending part of excavation day. It was a good thing because all the guys had already finished and just Phil and Kurt were finishing up with site maintenance to protect the mounds of dirt from blowing around.
Phil probably did not need to stick around to help out, but he was like a kid, so giddy and excited to be a part of the start of construction, that I didn't want to burst his bubble. All in all, it was a great first day.
getting ready


first dig

moving dirt before moving dirt again

view through the office window

don't worry Cricket! We promise to fix your yard soon!

at the end of the day

Free concrete anyone?

Soon to be the Vrbas master bed and bath!

Phil also cut in new space in the crawl space for duct work etc.

Mr. Mud

I told you...giddy like a child to get in that dirt!