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Guess What?

2 Aug

I’ve got blue paint photos to share of the house but before I do, a little announcement. Drum roll please…

Baby Reagan Final SmallYep, we’ve got a little reinforcement on the way! That means that there are several projects that have to get done around here very very soon!

  • Fence for the back yard
  • Doggie door for the pups
  • An entire Nursery to decorate!
  • Not to mention finishing up the projects we already have started!

It’s a little overwhelming but we can do it!

Ready for a few house shots? I thought so. Without further comment, The Blue Monster!

Reagan Front Yard 2 Reagan Front Yard 3 Reagan Front Yard 1 Reagan Back Yard1 Reagan Back Yard 2 Reagan Back Yard 3I included just a few yard photos as well because the grass is just so pretty! We’ve still got a few spots of pink to paint over like on each of the doors but we’ve been waiting for some nice cool days we can leave the doors open and it’s just been too rainy and hot.

So there you have it. A baby and no more pink house!!!!

Pink No More… Well Almost

28 May

I’ve been holding out on you. Why? Well mostly because of the major pain in the you know what getting paint on this house has been. We hired a painter and he was a dud. I won’t go into great detail. Those of you who know us personally know the drama and I’m not rehashing it here. Needless to say, 8 weeks into the project there wasn’t a drip of paint on the house. So we fired him. AND we got to work. We’ve almost finished up all the prep-work. B & I are working hard to get that all done every night when he gets off work. That way we can spray on Friday, Saturday, & Sunday this weekend. We’ve got a little help from my Dad, sweet Cousin Tristan, and the Milwaukee Airless/Fine Finish Paint Sprayer  from Home Depot. Here’s how the house looks now all scraped, primed, and with a little paint on the front right side:

DSC_0118All of the big portions of primer you see on the siding had to be scraped to the bare wood. Basically the previous paint job was not done correctly and this paint was peeling off in sheets… with my hands. We used a few Harbor Freight $12 heat guns and putty knives to make the scraping go faster.  DSC_0119 DSC_0120There was quite a few pieces of the soffit and fascia that the painter replaced. We primed most of that bare wood and will be finishing up that before we paint. DSC_0121Most of the windows and doors are already taped off. We did that for the painter but he never got around to the painting part. We’ll have to tape up a few pieces that fell off and the few windows and doors that we left un-tapped.  DSC_0122 DSC_0123Notice something missing? That’s right the Hot Tub is GONE. Gave it away on Craigslist. I was so tired of it taking up our entertaining space and being an eyesore. I hope the new owners have it installed and are enjoying it!  DSC_0124 DSC_0125 DSC_0126 DSC_0127What what?! Is that paint!!!!??? Yes but this is paint that I tried to roll on… That brick was a no go! No rolling it. No way. Painting it with a brush was the only way… until we bought our little sprayer friend. Now, I know there will be some brushing paint in the brick. The sprayer is not the thing that saves that but it will make it easier and faster. Ignore that tiki torch. I was trying to keep the bugs away while painting last week. DSC_0128I love how the green of the plants works with the navy paint color. The color is Martha Stewart’s Wrought Iron. That color sounds like it would be black or dark charcoal but it’s not. It’s a dark navy.  DSC_0130Had to share this photo of our neighbors. I adore the houses on our street and their green green yards! DSC_0132Speaking of green yards… check out that rock free yard!  DSC_0140This is how happy B feels about our current painting project. Me too my love, mee too!

Yard Update III, With Review

11 Jun

Yep, it seems like my regular posting schedule has dwindled down to once a month with is just plain silly. We move thru projects so quickly sometimes it’s hard for me to keep up. If you follow us on Facebook you’ll be seeing more progress there than here.

So on to the yard update. We have GRASS. I mean a ton of grass. Especially in the back yard. The front seems to be coming in a bit slower but we’ve over seeded this weekend and it rained right on top of it so we should be seeing some more sprouts soon. I cannot tell you how happy it makes me to simply push mow the yard without fear of running over a rock, throwing it into a window, and causing untold damage just cutting grass. I mowed last night and smiled the whole time. Not many people smile while mowing I venture to guess but I just makes me happy.

I promised a review on the company we went with and here it is. We used Luttrell Construction Co Inc who, as I said before, I found on Craigslist and they were:

AWESOME

No really, they were that good. Jamey, the owner, was on sight the entire job. He worked with his guys. He treated our yard like it was his and did the work exactly how he would do his own. I cannot gush enough about his professionalism. In an industry where you know you will be disappointed, he is a shiny gold star in my book.

We went ahead and had the front yard completed as well. We figured it would cost less to have him do the job while he was here rather than coming back in the fall for the front. The quote was less than we expected and so we just had all done at once.

Now we are doing a little work inside. We’ve:

  • Finished the spare bedroom where the ceiling fell last spring. It’s now as beautiful shade of yellow called Yellow Finch from Benjamin Moore.
  • Added lighting to the back door + sunroom. Neither of them had lights.
  • I’m almost finished reupholstering the chair I bought in December for a mere $35!
  • I’ve almost completed refinishing two awesome end tables that we will use as night stands. I found & painted them on Thursday of last week. That’s a fast project for this procrastinator.

We’ll be working on the ceiling and the back “patio” area in the next few weeks. I’m calling the area right outside the back door a patio area because eventually that’s what it will be. For now it will be crushed gravel(when we get it put in) and later we will either do stamped concrete it or install pavers.

So that’s it for now and here’s a photo dump of what we’ve been up too! Click on the images to make them bigger! PS My camera is on the fritz so these are all iPhone photos. Sorry for the poor quality. 🙂

Yard Update II, It’s a long one…

3 May

Yes, it’s 1:48 am and I’m starting a post. I can’t sleep so until my benadryl kicks in I’m going to give you an update of what’s going on with the mud pit we’re calling a yard these days. Mostly, nothing, well not really nothing but nothing major.

We’ve decided to call in the pros on this one ladies and gents. We realized that not only would it take us a ridiculous amount of time to complete the project but by the time you add up the fact we’re playing this by ea, meaning it’ll take much longer than the pros, we’ll probably end up spending almost the same amount letting someone who knows exactly what their doing handle this job.

So where did I start. Oddly enough Craigslist. I’m a firm believer that EVERY business should have a website but that’s just not how all construction businesses work, yet. Yeah I could have gone to the nationally advertised A’s list but I’m cheap meaning I’m not paying $6/month to find reviews. That’s what google’s for.

So after searching for bob cat and excavation I came up with 4 solid numbers to call. Three appears to be excavation companies and one, a guy with a bob cat. After speaking with all 4 guys I had appointments set up with all 4.

Guy #1 came Thursday night and basically spent an hour and a half reviewing everything we would need all the way down to quoting a tree removal and seeding. He was professional, thorough , and to top it off he never once said anything to imply I was a woman and didn’t know anything about the work needing to be done. Since Brian wasn’t here, that really stood out to me. Especially when I do in fact, know a lot more than the average Joe.

Guy #2 Made an appointment to show up Friday morning. He was the guy with the bob cat. His goal was to get in and out basically doing the bare minimum to keep our costs low. Being DIYers normally that would appeal to us but since we’ve already spent so much time out there… I was over the DIY and just wanted someone else to take it over. Brian agreed.

Guy #3 Called and told me he’d be by Saturday afternoon. He’d call before he came just to make sure we were home. He never called or came by.

Guy #4 Called the day he was supposed to come out for the quote and informed me that since he’d be traveling from a suburb of our town that there’d be extra transport costs and he wasn’t sure he could be competitive. AKA our project, even though it’s big to us, was too small for him. We understood.

So who did we go for? I’m sure you’ve already guessed #1 and you’re correct. This time it wasn’t about the best price, it was about what we were getting for the money. Yes, we could have gone with bob cat guy but we’d still have to spend the entire summer working to get it ready for grass.

We’re really happy so far with the company we went with. It’s locally owned and been in the same family for 2 generations. The guy has been great so far. I’ll plan on doing a full review and let you know the company name & info once we know we’re perfectly happy with how the job went down. We can’t wait to enjoy some fun this summer in our new back yard!

Here’s a few details I want to incorporate (don’t forget to follow us on Pinterest):

Click on the image for links to these fun places on my Pinterest board!

A perfect garden? Yes please! Even better, a vintage shed! A place to eat. Flaming water features (thinking about a DIY) The perfect place for all our tools. Yard Jenga, nuf said!DIY outdoor sofa, yep I got this covered.Yes we’re bringing in more rock… crushed in the mean time. We’ll paver later. Hot tub face lift. Oh and you know, get it working!

Take That You Ugly Rock Planter!

12 Sep

If you follow us on Facebook or Twitter you may have seen my excitement regarding a recent purchase. The best $10 we’ve ever spent in fact! Just a few short weeks ago we headed on over to Harbor Freights Labor Day sale. We were looking to purchase an air compressor that would work well for us. We mostly wanted it to run nail guns, maybe a grinder, our gravity fed spray gun, and an air hammer. After doing some research online we decided that this guy would work great for us. It had mostly good reviews and with a $20 extended warranty that allows for full replacement, we were sold.

Image via Harbor Freight

It boasts a 2 horsepower motor that puts out 4.5 SCFM @ 90 PSI, 5.5 SCFM @ 40 PSI with a 125 PSI maximum. I know for some of you that’s a lot of mumbo jumbo but here’s what you need to know about compressors. Each tool you buy requires a certain SCFM or standard cubic feet per minute. As long as your compressor can function at the levels require by the tool you are good to go! It’s got an 8 gallon tank and requires oil. That was the one thing I was worried about. Keeping an eye on the oil. I would have preferred an oiless model but those were significantly more expensive so being frugal, I decided to let that one go and to just be a better oil monitor. We got this bad boy for $99 and we’ve used it a lot. Keep reading and you’ll see why.

Here’s the tool I was bragging about. Image via Harbor Freight

This guy is a workhorse. So what is it? It’s a Super Duty Air Hammer with Chisels! I know your thinking, ‘What in the world could they be using that for?’ Well you’ve see the amount of rock we have around this place right?! Not to mention that our sidewalk is covered with slippery mosaic tile that depicts some pretty pagen imagery. We’ve got A LOT of things that this little guy will come in handy for. Let me remind you of what our the front of our house looked like before the Super Duty Air Hammer with Chisels…

Of course this is before we did a little yard clean up… Now, here’s what the front looked like when I used the air hammer for just a few short hours:

The Reagans Rock, The Pink Monster, Front of house 2011, Planter removalSee told ya! Best $10 dollars we’ve ever spent! Since it was so nice this weekend we decided to go out and finish off that brick planter. We decided that the sledge hammer was the best tool for this job and believe me our sore back and shoulders are proof. Here’s how the front of the house looks now:

You may have also noticed a few other things

  1. Maddux the camera hog is looking out the door. Seriously he gets in any photo he can!
  2. Sally, AKA the Greek Artemis statue is no longer by the porch steps. Our wonderful neighbors have a heavy duty dolly and we were able to move her to the top of the driveway until she finds a new home.
  3. We’ve also been removing the mosaic tile on the porch and I am so happy to see that the concrete slab is in good shape.

We have big BIG plans for the front of this house but if you are wondering why we decided to remove the planters then let me explain.

Fist of all, I never really liked the rock that was there. Had it been stacked field stone, for example, it would have had me at hello. However it wasn’t. The rock is what people in our area call creek stone. It has orange undertones that make finding a house color we could live with difficult. In an effort to live with it for a while we decided on a color that would be just alright.

Second, they won’t grow anything… They get absolutely no sun and no rain. Now I am a low maintenance landscaping kind of gal and watering these planters everyday in the summer is not my idea of low maintenance and bare planters is just not something I can live with.

So with all that taken into account, we decided to take them out before we paint the house.

For those of you wondering what we did with all that rock and debris…

We built a ramp and then…

We dumped it into the pool! Talk about using what you have. It would have cost us a fortune to buy the materials to fill in this pool but with all the stone and pea gravel from the front yard, we’ll have this bad boy filled in no time at all!

So here’s how the house looks from the street now:

Hello front big windows, we couldn’t see you behind all that silly rock and brick!

We’ve of course also been working on finishing up the kitchen details. I know it’s taking us a really long time to post the final product but I want you to see it all done and then I’ll do separate posts on all the projects we did to make it come together. In the meantime I have plenty to post about with everything else we have done and are doing. Oh and did I mention we decided against Valspar’s English Tea Party for the exterior now that we are getting rid of the rock?! Yep! More on that in the next post!