Starting the new year with a BOOM

If it’s been quiet on the blog there is a reason. This past spring, we finally decided that the house would never be finished at our current pace. There were just too many other demands on our time and too many projects more enjoyable than remodeling. We were fortunate to find a really good builder, one who mostly works on projects far nicer than ours, and set about planning a whole house renovation.

Downstairs overview

The bathroom was gutted and a new layout designed with a separate tub and shower. It was made bigger by incorporating the closet which formerly attached to Lee’s office.


The kitchen grew several feet in each direction, with a new layout and four larger windows. Cabinet construction starts next week.


We stripped off the first 9′ of exterior siding and sheathing was added for shear. This complements the shear upgrades we already added to the second floor.

New trim and kitchen windows

Gutters were finally installed–a long overdue upgrade, given Oregon’s rainy weather.


New windows and door were added to the back. Our builder suggested that we open up the rear first-floor bedroom as a new dining area, a decision which refocuses the best views from the house out into the backyard. We spent the last six years puzzling over the floor plan and never considered this as a solution to our lack of dining space.

New door, windows, and gutters

The whole house has been re-plumbed and the first floor re-wired as well.

Can lights and plumbing

The living room gets two new half-height windows to bring in light without messing up the furniture layout.

Living room

The whole process has been overwhelming, time consuming, and very exciting.

This entry was posted in Renovation. Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Starting the new year with a BOOM

  1. Margy says:

    That is a complete makeover. I’ll be watching as it progresses. – Margy

    • robin says:

      We are so happy to have it finished and not hanging over our heads anymore. Freezing every winter and cooking on hot plates with everything powered by electric cords gets very old after a while.

  2. ShimFarm says:

    Funny, I thought of the three of you and wanted to stop by and wish you a happy and healthy 2015, and I found a new post up.

    I AM SO HAPPY to hear your news! Fantastic job…PLEASE PLEASE post more often LOL.

    The changes you have done are remarkable! Can’t wait to see what’s next!

    Again, all the best for 2015!

    • robin says:

      Happy New Year to you too Ann!

      It’s been pretty insane over here. Drywall is supposed to start mid January and I can’t even imagine what the house will look like with walls. It’s going to be novel. Hopefully everything will come out looking good. We were already talking about all the things we want to do around the place this year and it felt good not feeling stressed about making house progress.

  3. Phil says:

    Wow! Very nice… It’s an ambitious project, but looks like it’s all coming together nicely! When do you think it will be done?

  4. Woody says:

    Things like this always happen after you pull that first nail from an old house. It seemed so daunting when trying to wrap my head around starting with a clean slate instead of working around what was already there. I promise that your decision will add years to your lives.

    Looking out for updates!

    • robin says:

      Yeah, we had no idea when we first bought the house exactly how much was wrong with it. We are both glad to finish this project up so we can start working on other projects around the place.

  5. Bill says:

    I know how you guys must feel. I am in the same boat. Started out with a house and some projects. Each of those projects escalated into more projects when damage was bigger than expected or the scope expanded. Now, with kids, I don’t even start a project unless I know I can finish it in a day. Otherwise, I just bide my time, waiting for the wife to take the kids away for the weekend or something. For me though, the worst part about doing it all myself… Now, 11 years later, I’m almost done with the last major project. But, the first major project which was done as a short-term solution to a water problem has reached the end of it’s life. As such, the next major project after the last major project is actually the first major project again. Time marches on.

    One last thing… Hopefully, your seed-starting area is still intact. I’m looking forward to seeing new gardening posts.

    • robin says:

      LOL, Lee is always lamenting how he wishes I was able to help him make things go faster. With someone having to watch Sidney productivity and motivation is a lot harder. šŸ˜€

      The garden is still a go. I must admit to some trepidation for this coming summer as our little one is a lot more mobile. When we started last years garden she couldn’t walk well and kept mostly in one place. By the end of the garden year she was zooming around plants and finding things to eat, poke, and smash at. The concept of not stepping/pulling on seedlings and plant rows might be hard for a 2 year old.

      • Bill says:

        I can claim first-hand knowledge that most low-growing plants will bounce back after being stepped on 2-3 times. The 4th time is certain death though. šŸ™‚ One thing I discovered last year was to leave a couple patches barren in each planting area. Then, when they want to help dig, they can go to town in the barren patch. With 3 kids, it’s more about finding time to keep up with weeding more than the occasional crushed plant though.

  6. Jennifer says:

    I’m so excited about the remodel! I always love your posts. Looking forward to any and all updates/pics/posts. Happy new year to you three! Best of luck on a smooth and fast finish.

    • robin says:

      Thanks Jennifer. Happy New Year to you too! It’s been hectic around here but I can’t wait to be back home. Progress has been happening very fast with the house remodel.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *