Tuesday, June 19, 2012


We ARE making progress on our house, but none of it is smooth and easy. 

I have heard of marriages that end when a couple builds a house together.  We considered doing that once, but quickly came to the realization that we would not survive!  I just hope we can survive the repairs needed on this place!

Progress:  the painters come on Saturday to finish the overhead painting outside the dining room windows.

We hired a real company, with insurance and workmen's comp to do it.  They say it will only take one day.  It had better, because we will be driving the Alfa away on Sunday!

Progress:  The entry wall to the tandem garage has been replaced. 

A little history here:  in spring of 2011 I reached a "breaking point" when I was consulting with our handyman on the replacement of this wall.  Craig and I had different ideas about how it should be done.  This is a garage size space that has been used for random storage up till now.  

One wall is a former outside wall of the house and has redwood siding. One wall is the pass thru to the main three car garage, and has a flip-type garage door.  One wall is a cement block retaining wall that is the current outside wall of the house, and the fourth is the wall we've recently replaced. 

The original construction of the 4th wall was shoddy compared to the rest of the house.  The studs for the wall sat directly on cement, and got wet every winter. The basic wall was sheet plywood that had rotted out on the bottom, with a half sheet as a swinging Dutch door.  It was falling apart! 

Craig tore it all out a few weeks ago.  I didn't get a before picture. 

So this is the wall as we're starting to rebuild it.

The new wall is now on a nice cement foundation so the water will no longer rot the wood.  Craig has done the trim with ironwood ("IPE") because of the water. 

A new garage door has been ordered.  It is not a cheap one from a "big box store".  It is a custom door with decorator windows, that matches the doors on the three car garage.  It will be installed and painted after we get back.

The wall toward rest of the house had a window and an old air conditioner in it.

In February Craig removed both and re-drywalled the interior wall. This left holes in the exterior siding in the tandem garage.  He removed a bit more of the siding so the patch would look better. 

We had new redwood boards custom milled to match the old.  The patch is white because the wood was  primed before it was up.  We'll paint the wall in August.  (That will be my job!

At this point the space is still very much just a storage area.  But it has definite possibilities.  If you look beyond the junk, you can see that it has a large loft area in the back.  We will be clearing it out, adding some lighting, and possibly using those old interior doors as a couple of work benches. I'll take a picture when it is cleared out and made nice.

I will probably use this space as a studio when my old room is being restored as a bedroom. 

My studio will be the LAST room to be remodeled, but if it takes some months to sell the house after it goes on the market I want a place I can work!

We are so ready to take a few weeks off from this.  We are both looking forward to some ALFA time! Four more days...


  1. Wow, you sure you want to sell the place after all of this, it's going to be perfect!


  2. one task at a time and soon you will be on the road to where you want to be!

  3. That is awesome! Craig sure is a handy guy (when he isn't risking his neck of course). You will both have such a feeling of acomplishment. Good feelings to start your new life on the road.

  4. Your house will be so nice you may just want to stay! You are making some good progress. I didn't realize Craig was so handy....accident prone, but handy.

  5. Wow, lots of progress! Looking more and more finished, good enough to sell soon!

  6. I was thinking this AM how we have been preoccupied with our domicile(s) for so long now. It can really sap one's energy. I'm ready to move onto something else and you probably feel the same way.

  7. Don't make that house too nice or you won't want to sell it. And it definitely is time for another Alfa fix.

  8. This makes me think of the Holmes on Homes show, that Canadian guy that goes in and remodels. Craig did a really nice job. You'll get there.....

  9. Did you get my email about our Draw Something being stalled?


  10. I can't believe all the work you guys have gotten done. When you're done it will be gorgeous and hopefully a "quick sale."

  11. This post by Merikay may be misleading. These walls happened because our English-Hungarian handyman built them, with help and guidance from me. Then after he has finished such work, I typically putz around for a day or four, taking care of some follow-up steps and fixing up some rough spots. So your comments that I'm "handy" are probably undeserved.

  12. Wow, Merikay, you guys sure have done a lot of work! I have an idea how you feel - I am SO ready to be done with the house improvements. We have a little over three months left until our house goes on sale, and it is so nice to have an end in sight. :)


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