Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Bye-Bye Wood Paneling!

We were busy little bees last week-end doing hard, hard work. On the agenda was to rip out the tack strip from the nasty carpet and start tearing off the wood paneling. We got that plus a little more done.

The tack strip was so hard. Most of it was rotted and crumbled as you hammered it meaning you could only get tiny little pieces off at a time. Plus it was NAILED into the CONCRETE every FOUR inches! We spent hours and hours and hours prying and hammering that junk off. Sunday night I almost made Brad take me to the ER because I thought my wrist was broken. (Not really...but it hurt super bad.) Plus my right hand was bruised from shoving the crow bar so much. The tack strip smelled like cat pee and was rusted and was everywhere...(remember, this is the house that even had carpet on the front of the tub!) But we removed it all!

Thankfully, taking out the wood paneling was a piece of cake. It literally popped right off. The hard part was having to get the floor molding, the ceiling molding, all the trim and the built-ins out first! Brad was a trooper prying all of it off, and most of it was even left intact.

We were able to take all of it down in the office/guest room. Remember what this room looked like BEFORE?

Whoa, ho, ho...does this room ever look different!?

We had to rip out the bookshelves and the built-in desk too! There are several places where the sheet rock will need to be replaced, but all in all...looks good!

Most of the living room got done too! There was a built in to the right of the fireplace that came out but we ran out of time and couldn't tear out the bar yet. This room was a bit more of a pain because 1/2 of the light switches were in metal boxes that had to be removed along with the switch plates. This made it twice as much work...but we got it!

Remember how dark and dreary it was BEFORE? Well look at it now:

The South wall sheet rock is in great condition but the north wall had a lot of glue and a little mold. The South wall does have those two square holes where built in speakers were, so those will have to be patched.

It is amazing how much lighter both rooms feel now! And bigger too!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

The "nice" carpet.

When we were tearing out the carpet two week-ends ago, the boys came over to check out our progress. They already know which room is theirs and they like to check on it when they are there. The first time they saw it and found out the room "assignments" Ben got really excited and said, "Desmond, look! When we wake up in the morning, we just walk right over here and here is baby sis' room!"

So, when they saw us tearing out the carpet, Ben got concerned. "Are you going to put something new on the floor?" I tried to explain how there would be beautiful new wood floors and he would get a nice, soft rug, but he wasn't having it. "But Mama, I want to keep this carpet! I like the brown and I think it looks real nice."

After I threw up in my mouth a little thinking of him and Desmond rolling around playing on it, I told him sorry, but it was going.

"Well, that's ok. Now I can get orange carpet with red spots on it."

It will go perfect with the walls he wants to paint red and orange! (With all of his stuff on the orange side of course.)

Monday, February 27, 2012

Bathroom storage.

These skinny little cabinets are to the right side of the bathtub in the master bath. Even though I would lose some storage, I'm thinking I should take them out to make room for a longer tub that would span from wall to wall. Thoughts?

Friday, February 24, 2012

No way am I doing this alone...

Designing this house is turning out to be so much fun! I have dreamed of it for over a year and have made lots of design decisions usually in the middle of those no-sleep nights.

But, I do have so many creative friends, and I really want to use their talents too!

My best friend Melissa was here in January to help me after G. was born. It was imperative that she see the house because she will be so much help to me on this journey. We drove down for the day just so she could walk through and start thinking about the re-design. Even in just the short time she was there, she already had come up with so many good ideas and had me changing my design plan!

The best part about her trip to see the house was how she dealt with Kathy...the friend of Uncle Ronnie's who was still staying in the house. When we were there, Kathy locked herself in the Master Bedroom as a  rude gesture to make us feel unwelcome. I tend to be timid and meek in those type of situations and told Lis that I would just send her some pics of the Master Bed and Bath. She was having none of that. She had flown all the way from Phoenix and by golly she is my best friend and is gonna see my bedroom!
She kindly knocked on the door and then waltzed in like we owned the place (which we do.) It made me love her even more than I already do. I know she will be such great help throughout this process...both with ideas and with SUPPORT!

Micca and Josh came to help us move stuff and Micca was able to give lots of really good input too. She's already sent me many texts and emails with ideas! And Katie and I made a day of it by driving down to see the house and take the kids to the Children's Museum.  I am so lucky to have these three girls and their talents. Plus I really wanted them to see the before in person! It is just going to be so shocking!

Thursday, February 23, 2012

View of the backyard.

Looking out the back doors we now see a big stinky pile of carpet.

But soon it will be the boys playing, or the flowers blooming, or the stillness of the woods.

This process will be a long one, but the reward will be great.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

And Bye-Bye Carpet!

So, remember how we were only gonna empty the house last week-end? But then we ended up taking down the wallpaper too?

Well, it gets even better!

Miss g.'s room has quite the odor. Every time we go into the house, the smell of cat pee overwhelms us, and it is the worst in the back bedrooms. But especially in g.'s room and we wanted it gone.

While Melissa and I were happily tearing down wallpaper, Steve asked, "Where's Brad?" and just as he said that we hear this, Rrrrrriiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiippppppppppppppppppppp from the back bedroom. We all walk back there and sure enough my sweet hubbie had jumped in with both feet and was ripping out the carpet. Turns out he wanted that smell gone NOW not later.

I started helping and just like the wallpaper, turns out that 40 year old carpet comes up pretty easy. We got it out of that room and onto the back porch in no time. We filled a sprayer with water and bleach and sprayed the floor in hopes that the smell would go away and were so thrilled with our progress.

We had motivation so we called to check on g. She was still asleep so we decided to do the living room too!
It made such a huge difference and it's actually looking like a construction zone! We started to take some of the tack strip up but didn't really have the right tools so we called it good for the day.
Sunday morning we headed over as soon as I put g. down for her first nap...around 9. We were eager to get the house empty and get some more work done. Everything was happening so quickly and we were having so much fun! So once Steve and crew left around 11, we got started on doing more carpet. Now don't get me wrong, fun is a strange word to use because this stuff was disgusting. The smell and the dust and the filth that covered the carpet was enough to make me never want to step on anyone's carpet barefoot, like ever. It was gross. 
But, getting it outta there was what made it fun! The relief of it being gone and the vision of the blank slate slowly appearing made it exciting!

Here is Brad demonstrating out we did it.

First you cut at the edge of about a 2.5 foot strip and tug. I would usually have to put my full weight on the edge to hold it down so he could get a good rip going.

Then you pull...

And pull...

And pull with all your might before looking at your wife triumphantly...

Then we would roll up the section and throw it on the back porch in disgust. I would pull up the (pad because that was way easier and throw it out too and before you knew it...the room would look like this!

We did the dining room, hallway, the boys' room, the master bedroom AND bathroom, and the office all in just a few hours. And yes, the master BATHroom did have carpet. Even on the front face of the tub!

We made two HUGE piles on the back porch that will eventually have to be moved again to the dumpster, but at least it's out of the house!

Check out that dark, dreary office already looking better!

We did this room last because we thought it would be the worst, but honestly they were all bad. I will forever have the smell of cat pee singed in my brain.

Can you believe how much we got done in one week-end!?

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Bye-Bye Wallpaper

Our only objective last week-end was to get the house empty. When Steve called on Friday and told me he really thought we could get it empty by Sunday I was floored! What I thought would be an auction 6 weeks away was now getting done for cheaper in only 2 weeks. 

Brad and I wanted to help and like I said, we were hoping to only get the house empty...nothing else.

Well, it all started Saturday afternoon. Steve and Melissa's youngest, Trevor whispered to his mom..."I just want to pull that piece of wallpaper down so bad." Now, the wallpaper is literally hanging off the walls in parts, so the temptation is definitely there. Melissa said, "Don't do it" but he did it anyway. She came and told me to tease him about it so I walked into the dining room, looked at the entryway where all the guys were and said, "Oh NO! Who pulled off my wallpaper? I was gonna keep that!" Poor Trevor. His mouth dropped and I swear he almost cried. His big brother totally ratted him out too by pointing to him saying, "He did it." I quickly told him I was kidding and that his mama made me do it and we all laughed. 

But then we all were tempted. And we all started pulling it off. And well then, we just couldn't stop. It was like peeling off sunburn skin. It was SO FUN.

It came off like no wall paper ever has in the history of wallpaper. You could literally start a piece and pull the entire panel off keeping it in tact. Man, it was fun. And FAST.

So, we got all the wallpaper off in the dining room, entry way, and hallway in about an hour. Seriously.

And it already looks SO much better! I saved a piece of each to frame or something so we can always remember the lovely gold, chocolate brown, and powder blue VELVET walls.

Monday, February 20, 2012

The house is...EMPTY!

My most dreaded part of this entire project is over! We have emptied the entire house! Wahoo!

This place was packed full of stuff. The house has SO much storage, everywhere you turn there are cabinets and closets and niches which is a really good thing except...they were all FULL of stuff that had to be sorted and removed. 

We hired Steve O'Daniel, his wonderful wife Melissa and his two hard-working teenaged boys to help us with this part. We originally had planned to have our own auction, but after Steve rummaged a bit through our stuff, he really didn't think we would make enough to warrant our own sale. We had a lot of stuff, but nothing that we could price really high and make money on. Plus with the set up and advertising time it would be about 6 weeks before the sale!

Instead he suggested a junk auction. His fee would be much lower for this. They would haul everything to the auction site for a flat price, then the place takes a cut of the sale price and we get the rest of the profit. The timeline was shorter and we were guaranteed to get rid of everything. We were SOLD!

They got started last week-end (February 12th) and worked for about 5 hours on Sunday. Then we came down this past week-end. Brad had off Friday so we got in a few hours on Friday afternoon before Steve and the crew joined us about 5:30 to work a good hour and a half. 

When I walked in on Friday I was blown away with how much they had done in just one day's work. They had taken two loads and almost all of the big stuff was gone. They had also taken most of the books! 

Friday afternoon I got to work on the laundry room. We had discovered that almost everything in the under-cabinets was family stuff that had to be sorted. Lots of pictures and scrapbooks etc. These are the things that take all the time and I was the only one that could make those hard decisions of what was important. Brad boxed up all the rest of the books in the office and we helped Steve fill up the trailer for one big load. 

Saturday we worked from about 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and got almost the entire house empty! I still had to finish the laundry room and everyone else got the other rooms almost done. The kids were well taken care of by P&G and didn't even come over to bother us once. Papa took the boys to the OSU basketball game all by himself and they had a ball. Genevieve was in good hands with Gaga and when she needed to eat, Gaga would just call me and I'd run over real quick. 

Sunday we started about 9:30 and by 11:30 we were done!

It felt so good to see the house emptying up and Steve and his crew were SO fast. What would have taken me months and months to sort and box and move, they had flying out the door. 

The laundry room. Remember all those books? Two closets and a million cabinets all empty! They also took the washer/dryer AND deep freeze!

The task center was interesting. Those two drawers were the definition of junk drawers. Hair ties from when Lane and I were little, Grandma's cigarette filters, random bills/pictures/notes/letters, all sorts of office odds and ends and those little red, white and blue gummed stars that Grandma used to stick to all her letters. There was also a record player that hooked to a main intercom that controlled the other intercoms that were in every room. Oh, and two bottles of margarita mix.

I was so intimidated by this room. There were two huge filing cabinets full of documents, thousands of books, yucky old furniture and ew, the bath covered in newspaper clippings and pictures of naked girls. I was so busy sorting the laundry room that I didn't even have to work on this one though. 
It is such a dark room. I really hope once the paneling comes down and the door is replaced by a full glass panel door it will lighten up.

That newspaper is where Melissa was showing me how to scrape off popcorn ceilings. She said if they haven't been painted they would come right off. She tried here first and it wouldn't budge. She was boggled because it really looked like it hadn't been painted. We tried it in two other rooms and sure enough it just fell off like nothing. We concluded that since this is where Ronnie spent most of his time, the nicotine had just glazed over it to glue it to the ceiling. Yuck.
The kitchen was one of the last rooms to be empty. When Grandma died, we took everything of sentimental value like dishes, silver, trays etc. So there wasn't much left. But somehow the cabinets were still full. Endless supplies of plastic cups, the same spices from probably when Grandma moved in, turkey basting bags from the seventies and 39 cent food coloring were some of my favorite finds. There was cat medicine in with the silverware and bills in with the utensils. A clove of garlic in the cabinet and some of my china in the dishwasher (along with two refrigerater magnets!?). It was an interesting dig. I did find some fun old match boxes and little mint tins as well as cute little pronged forks for appetizers that are very 60s. 

We got the fridge gone! And the trash compactor! But the others are hooked up to gas and water and we need a specialist to come unhook them.

The pantry wasn't too much fun. There was a lot of really old food and some jars full of unlabeled liquid that Brad joked was urine...and he's probably right. I did find some neat-o jars though! I have big plans for this pantry!

 Here's the O'Daniel crew. They were AMAZING. I loved spending the week-end with them! They were fun, professional, nice, and fast! Their youngest, Trevor, is a huge OSU fan. We didn't find out until after the first run to the auction. He made his dad wait until the LAST item to try and buy some old OSU glasses and he won them for $19! I was so mad at Melissa and Steve for not telling me he loved OSU because Grandma's house was FULL of Cowboy stuff. She insisted that when they do this, they make their boys buy anything they find that they want and use their own money. Well, this week-end anytime I found something I would give it to her and say, "Can he please have this?" Little stuff she would smile and take, but anything she thought would sell, she made me put it on the trailer. I'd say, "That will only sell for like a dollar!" And she'd say, "well, that is a dollar in your pocket."

They also found buyers for the big stuff that should bring more money than what we would have made at the junk auction. For example, the piano. Steve said the last time he saw a piano, it sold for $7.50! He found a buyer to buy ours for $50. He also found someone to buy my dad's childhood wagon wheel bedroom set, the grandfather clock, and the dining room table set.

Here's their set-up. Counting that first Sunday, we took 10 trailer loads to auction!

Almost everything in the house went to the auction. But what did we do with what didn't? We put it in a huge trash pile in the garage! Once we get the construction dumpster, it will all go in there, but for now, here it is:

 Not too bad considering how much stuff was in there! We even got most of the window treatments down. See those blue dupioni silk drapes? It made me a little sick to think about how much money my grandma must have spent on window treatments! They were all custom made, dupioni silk with yards and yards of fabric. They were lined with matching valences, complimentary sheers, and some even had custom roller shades covered in the same fabric as the drapes! However, I don't think they had ever been cleaned and with the fading, the smell, and the stuck-on cat hair, there was no way they were salvagable!

 Hooray for an empty house!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Furniture Worth Keeping...

Here are two of the pieces of furniture I kept. 

This one will have the glass doors removed and hardware replaced and will become the "bar". It has lighting built in and I may even put some glass in the back...

This one will get some color of paint and will house my shamrock china. It will stay right where it is in the dining room, only I will center it between the windows.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

We made a dent!

Just an idea of what a couple of guys with a couple of chainsaws and a couple of hours can do!

Garage front before:

Garage front after:

Middle of the house before:
Middle of the house after:

Entry before:

Entry after:

We ran out of daylight before they could tackle that jungle on the right, but they got SO much done! Burn piles are getting big and they had a ball!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

The Rasps come to get things started!

Three weekends ago, Josh and Micca came to help us out on the house!

We had three goals:
1. Move out everything that we want to keep. The rest can stay in the house for the auction.
2. Try and pump out the nasty water in the cellar.
3. Start to break through the jungle that is on the front of the house.

And we did ALL three!

They the truck for hauling, the pump for pumping and the dogs for playing.

Cali playing with the only other 2 dogs in the world she doesn't try and kill...Cash and Hank. Wait, I think she tried to kill Hank at first...

She actually submitted to him!

Josh surveying the landscaping. The boys wanted so badly to skip goals #1 and 2 and just jump right in with their chainsaws. This is their dream to get to go in and cut everything out like a mad man. But I was adamant. We HAD to get the other two done first. Micca and I may or may not have had to go out and get them one or two or 300 times.

The back of the house. Josh thinking, "Man. I could be chainsawing for the rest of my life if I lived here."

Micca about to walk in. She was so excited to see it...

That is, until she actually saw it. "Crap. What did I get myself into?"

Yeah, right. They both jumped in with both feet. They are the hardest workers we know. And the best friends we could ever have.

The boys carried out boxes as we packed them and didn't complain TOO much about the heavy furniture I had decided to keep. But it wasn't too much stuff. Mainly Uncle Ronnie's writings, Grandma's scrapbooks, and a few collectables. They moved it all to the dairy barn where it will await the renovation. 

It was Hank and Cash's first time to the farm, and I seriously doubt it will be their last! Meet Hank the Tank. He's still a puppy and is bigger than me. He's adorable!

We worked until the sun went down and then capped the night off with some delivery pizzas and beer. Funny story, we called Pizza Hut and they couldn't deliver because their delivery man's car was broken! They only have one! So, Mazzio's it was.

It was SUCH a fun and productive day!