Five Days in Canada

Last Friday, we left for a 5-day trip scheduled long before we knew the start date of construction.  Very inopportune timing.  We missed A LOT.

On Friday, the last major deliveries were made.

Lumber and plywood:

Not one, but two dumpsters:

Then on Monday, the carpentry crew arrived to prep the roof for removal.

First they cut the over-sized overhang from around the perimeter of the current roofline:

Then, they tarped their work to protect the house from any rain.

On Tuesday, the crane arrived to remove the roof while the boys supervised from across the street:

Greff provided a birds-eye view:

And, the view of the now-removed roof from the ground:

Being dismantled:

Then, the crane lifted the floor joists up for installation:

Pretty eventful couple of days to miss!  The rest of this week, they’ve managed to set the floor joists and deck for half the house… doing so in 100-degree+ heat indexes.  Somehow the FlavorIce seems like the absolute least we can do for the amazing crew working above.


Additional Support

Today, we gained additional structural walls to support the roof removal process.

You can now access the family room only by slipping between the 16″ space between the posts or by going through Jack’s room.  Always wanted to watch TV in a cage.

Greff says these walls “serve no purpose” after the floor joists are in.  That should be only about two weeks from now…

Powder (Blue) Room

Our house was built in 1961. So, it came as no surprise that the bathrooms we acquired came in vintage shades of blue and pink.  Here’s the “before” of the hall bath:

Knowing that we were eventually moving upstairs and this would be a powder room, we removed the shower/tub and reduced the size of the room. (Sidebar – This has left us with one full bath for the four of us. Much as I love showering with pirates and rubber duckies, I do look forward to the day when the boys have their own bathing space.)

I designed the entire bathroom around Ballard Designs Bellesol Mirror which I loved from the moment I saw it:

Then, the rest went from there…

Tile:  Of course consulted with tile BFF Jenna and went with an Italian travertine that admittedly looks far more expensive that it actually is.  She recommended that with little boys at home, the functional benefits of wall tile outweigh even the aesthetic ones (and those are significant). We opted for a simple mosaic pattern on the floor of 15″x15″ and 7.5″x7.5″ squares, while we went with a brick pattern on the wall of 15×7.5″ rectangles – all the tiles were in the same “color” which offered substantial and beautiful variation.

Sink:  I searched high and low for a pedestal that was large enough to fill the space and unique enough to not feel trite. I ended up with a console sink from Strom Plumbing by Sign of the Crab.

We accented the sink with an antique brass widespread faucet (photo is of nickel option).

Lighting:  I wanted something soft but not too delicate. World Imports Chambord Wall Sconce offered just the right combination of metal, fabric, and just a touch of glass.

Paint:  We finished off the room with Benjamin Moore Creme Caramel in a satin finish trimmed with Benjamin Moore Simply White.

Here’s how it all comes together:

Crown molding still come.  Haven’t gotten to selecting that for any spaces (other than the kitchen where its integrated into the cabinets) just yet.

I love that as I went to pull photos for this post, I learned that many of these elements have been discontinued. Just makes the bathroom all the more unique.

Safety First

In another before and after moment, I bring you the basement stairs.  Doesn’t seem like something of interest, but here’s the before:

Those are open stairs to the basement flanked by a bed of white river rocks and an arguably decorative white metal railing.

Considering our two small children, we opted to sacrifice this “decorative element” and closed off the stairwell with a door.  See today:

As Jack gets increasingly mobile and grows incredibly fond of the basement playroom, this is proving itself a VERY good decision.

Hungry No More

From the beginning of this project, we knew the kitchen was going to be our splurge room.  I love to cook and spent hours upon hours creating my dream culinary space.

Here’s the before…

We completely reconfigured the space – eliminating the eat-in element in favor of an island and moving the table space to the new breakfast area (formerly the dining room).

From the outset, I knew I wanted light cabinets with a French country feel.  Mark at Watkins Cabinet made this a reality… he mocked up no less than three door samples to ensure we had the right color and level of distressing.  Then, together we found the perfect basketweave posts and corbels to accent the cabinetry itself.  I love these details.  More on other subtle cabinetry details in a later post.

Here’s the overall feel:

And a close up of the corbels – not the best lighting, but:

Trusting the amazing eye of Jenna at Mosaic Tile, we went with Benjamin Moore Grizzly Bear Brown paint.  There are very few walls and I love how warm this makes the room feel.  Here’s a close up of the paint next to the cabinets:


Still looking for stools for the island.  Can’t decide if I should go neutral, dark wood, or a shade of painted blue to pull in a bit more color.  Open to suggestions…

Still to come – details on the tile and appliances.