first impressions

Week one. This isn’t so bad. Workers are friendly and prompt. Demo day(s) are noisy, but bearable (think dentist drill without the drool). We even got a first floor bathroom on day one.

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New first floor bathroom

Things are moving. Fast. So fast that we had a half-day notice to move out of our breakfast room.

It was my first panic-stricken moment of the project. That night we needed to pack for vacation and our niece (+ one) was arriving to stay for a few days at our house during Lollapalooza. We hadn’t even figured out where the table, chairs, sideboard, pictures, dishes, etc. would be going for the next 6 months. But Dan and Colby were quick to get it mostly cleared out before I even got home from work. Luckily they know – “if mom ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy.” Construction crisis #1 averted.  Continue reading →

calm before the storm

This is our house. Doesn’t it look lovely? Calm. Quiet. Peaceful.

In full disclosure, this photo is six months old. Back when our dreams were somewhere between pencil scrawls on scratch paper and blueprints from our architect. When the sky was the limit and anything was possible. Before permits and construction loans. And of course, the impending purgatory of no kitchen or backyard for more months than I can come to grips with.

It’s a very very fine house. Prime location. Roomy. Corner lot with fabulous light. When we bought it three years ago I was smitten with the screened-in porch, and the promise of cocktails and the ability to freeze time there. (The Lundak Lounge had a lot of good days.)

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We knew we’d want to update the kitchen and needed a first floor powder room (“Yes, there’s no bathroom on the first floor, you have to go up the stairs and use ours.”) But one thing led to another, and if we were going to add a bath and improve the kitchen, why not add a family room, a master bedroom, a basement room. You get the idea.

Over the next 5 or 6 months (ok, I know I’m kidding myself…it will be spring break by the time we’re done with this project), we’ll be ripping off, building up, moving around and making this 108 year old house a modern family home. Feels like we are stepping off the ledge into the unknown, except that we know enough people who’ve done big remodels that we are fully sober, eyes wide open. And we’re still going for it.

But, it’s all new to us. So, why not document it?

So, here’s to the 602 before the chaos starts. (Cue deep breathing.)