Wednesday, January 29, 2014

January 28th - Countertops and Light Fixtures

Two jobs that we do not do are installing countertops and installing light fixtures. I'm not sure what the process is for installing countertops. I know that once the cabinets are installed, the contractors come and measure each one to make sure that the countertop will fit like a glove. They install the countertop and then caulk around the walls so that it will be secure. That much I know. And wham-o! You have a beautiful countertop.

Can I just add that choosing a countertop pattern was so hard?! Some of the home furnishing decisions we had to make were really difficult because the samples that they show you are a tiny 1"x 1" swatch. How am I supposed to know what that pattern will look like when it's 4' long? Other choices that were definitely difficult: color of interior paint (again, tiny swatch and they all looked the same), rock for the exterior of the home (we'll sample that shortly), and colors for the exterior stucco and trim. 

We do not install any light fixtures simply because the wiring could get tricky. However, I will say that in our apartment, Skylar changed out the light fixture in our bathroom like a pro. Never had a problem with it. This was about 4 years ago but it only evidences that this program is right up his alley. In any case most of the fixtures are in which makes working in the houses at night so much easier!

I don't love the dome in the kitchen. Right next to it is the chandelier type fixture in the dining room. After we move in we may need to adjust that. I don't love the two contrasting styles.

Living room

Oh! Here are the "uppers". All of our cabinets are in! The fridge goes on the left, stove and microwave on the right

Dishwasher goes under the Arctic Circle drink


Bathroom. Skylar is working on the finish plumbing. That's what all that stuff is

What comes next? I'm not sure actually. Touch ups on the paint. Installing all the finish plumbing. Now we're at the point where it's all the little things on the inside that need to be done. And the rock on the outside of the house. Starting Saturday...(pictures to come!)

Sunday, January 19, 2014

January 18th - Cabinets Installed (Just the base cabinets)

The day after the floors were done, the cabinets needed to be installed because this week, contractors are coming to install the countertops. To clarify: we do not install any of the flooring. All of that is contracted out. We DO install the cabinets (the base cabinets, those on the floor and the uppers, those hanging on the walls). We do not install the countertops. So obviously, we needed to get the base cabinets installed for the countertops. 

In addition to having countertops this week, we should also be getting all of our outlets and light fixtures set up this week. Exciting! Having light in the houses makes working at night SO much easier. 

Should you be interested in seeing what the other homes look like, there is a Group Blog that our supervisor manages for Self-Help Homes. It's more or less up to date, but it's fun to see the progress and design of the other homes as well. There are pictures of the other group families and a slide show of the each home's progress. Several cameos from the Rackhams will be found. If you see two men on the roof, you can bet your bottom dollar that it's Adam and Skylar. Also, if you look closely, there is a great picture of me stuffing my face at our potluck at around 8-9 months pregnant. 

To the cabinets!

This is the island in our kitchen. So excited for that!

Master bathroom cabinets

Another kitchen view

January 17th - Hardwood, Tile and Linoleum Installed! (Carpet to come...soon?)

This is exciting. Really exciting. The house is really starting to look like a house now, you know what I mean? Somewhere people would live and laugh and love...Not just an unfinished project that seems like it may never end.

There were 2 options for flooring with the houses. You could choose to have a nicer grade carpet and linoleum in your kitchen, entry, laundry room, and bathrooms. OR you could get tile in your entry, hardwood in your kitchen, linoleum in the bathrooms and a lower grade carpet everywhere else. We went with the second option. When we chose, I hadn't really thought about it other than I wanted tile and hardwood but it turns out for us it's a better option. At first you may think, well if you want to rip up your floor, at least you would have nice carpet and only need to replace the linoleum. True, but in our case since we have a bigger kitchen/dining area, it worked out to go with the cheaper carpet and have that area with hardwood. AND if we do ever rip out our carpet we won't replace it with carpet, but probably hardwood. AND (double "and") with two boys running around why would I want nice carpet (to ruin) anyway? C'mon. 

Just for fun, here's a sneaky-peek at the cabinets! Not yet installed. (Oh really, I thought you would leave them in a big pile in the middle of the living room...)

Coming sooner than you know!

Saturday, January 11, 2014

January 11th - House Painted, Finish Work Done!

I missed the week that we finished all the finish work before it was painted. You just get to see pictures of the house painted with all the base and case done.

With most of the homes, they had enough money in their budget to have the finish work contracted out. That includes installing shelves, installing the doors, putting up trim around the doors and putting in base boards along the walls. However, our house plan is a little more expensive to build so we unfortunately (maybe?) didn't have the money to contract that work out so we installed all those things ourselves! A change of pace for us right? Not! The upside of this is that we now know how to install all those things if we ever want to rip it out and do it again with something different. The downside is that it takes time. Which means that it's time away from other things we could be doing to get further ahead. But Skylar as always was diligent and got it done in a relatively fast amount of time.

Here is the inside of our painted home: 

Standing in the living room, looking into the kitchen

Brillante, this picture is for you. This is the pantry I referenced here

Living Room

Standing in the living room, looking at the front door and closet

Dining area

Garage door

Standing in the master, bathroom to the left, closet on the right

Do you see all that beautiful casing around the doors? That is finish work and that is what Skylar did where all the other homes had it done by contractors. Boo. Ya.

Second bedroom 

Front bedroom

All the doors have to be taken off of their hinges and sprayed with paint in the basement. Notice the shims (pieces of wood) nailed into the top to hold them like an accordion

What's next for our home? Cabinets!