Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Weekend Update #19

This Weekend We:
-moved in 95% of our stuff (this last week in our apartment is very sparse, we are sleeping on air mattress!)
-bought All The Things
-our dads put together the arbor that we're getting married under and Corey's mom & brother stained it!
-Corey's dad mowed the lawn because the tractor is finally fixed
-my Dad worked on the porch
-installed the water softener
-fixed the bathroom sink
-unpacked almost all the stuff we moved
-painted some porch stuff
-put together the new porch furniture

This weekend was Memorial Day and our 95% of our stuff Move In Day.  We rented a U-Haul trailer for the move and wanted to take advantage of the ability to easily haul home Big Stuff.  So off to the stores we went for Memorial Day sales and we bought a:
-washing machine (being delivered next week)
-water softener
-weed wacker
-step stool
-2 rakes
-metal shelving unit (wish we had bought 2!)
-5 60lb bags of mortar for the porch stone
-chocolate brown exterior paint 
-2 cast iron sandwich makers for fun camping food
-bags of mulch
-play sand for a wedding project
-hose & sprayer
-paver stones for a landscaping plan
-random screws
-porch furniture

As I said on Facebook we bought All The Things.  Here's the water softener in place and Corey hooked it up himself!:

Corey also fixed the major clog in the bathroom sink that has been stumping us all since we bought the house in September.  Look at that running water going down the drain!

In other water news with the water softener hooked up we set up the ice maker!  The softener is taking care of the iron in the water and the eggy smell so now as long as I have ice and some lemon I can drink the well water!  After about 1 million plastic water bottles in 8 months this is big news!  Thanks for the ice maker Mom & Dad!

Sorry for the blurry cell phone picture

Just for fun here's a before and "during" shot of the front of our house.  Here it is on the inspection day:

And here it is this past weekend. Man I love that porch:

This weekend my Dad worked on patching over the unsightly holes leftover from taking down the old porch walls.  Here is the yucky before:

And here it is with the lower patch installed.   (He had to temporarily take down the shutter so ignore that dirty patch of siding).  The long skinny patch above this lower patch is coming soon, I think next weekend. 

And now that it's primed (to be painted soon) it blends right in:

I also worked on the porch this weekend.  These upper beams are original to the porch and were very dirty and gross looking. Look:

So I washed them with the TSP cleaner that we used on the inside walls before painting them.  Just this made them look so much better:

And then I primed them.  I was going to also caulk some weird seams along the bottom (not pictured) and then do the exterior paint, but then it started storming so I worked on inside projects (aka unpacking).

Next weekend we move in 100% of our stuff and Corey (I don't move in till mid-June due to my work schedule and a bachelorette vacation).  And then the mad dash of finally finishing all the partially finished projects and speed landscaping begins!

*The arbor and porch furniture are not pictured due to me wanting some surprises left for people coming to the wedding next month

Monday, May 19, 2014

Weekend Update #18

This Weekend We:
-(this one is just I) went to another wonderful wedding shower!
-put away more generous presents :)
-added 2 out of 3 railing sections!
-went to a really fun huge yearly flea market in our town & scored majorly
-finished spraypainting the railings
-spraypainted the mailbox
-spraypainted the metal bands on my free planter
-made some art that will be its own post sometime soon
-messed around with trying to fix the tractor (there is no more frustrating activity in the world, especially when you have a half mowed yard)
-weedwacked around the property
-put together the new grill
-removed the last few fence posts from the side we took down
-filled all the post holes with dirt
-cleaned up, organized, & rearranged because we realized the next time we are at the house it'll be (95% of our stuff) Move-In Day!

I didn't help with this railing process much because I was in a divide-and-conquer mood since the time crunch is getting to me.  So a special thanks to my Mom & Dad for going solo on this project.

Railing assembly:

Railing Installation:

Both front sections are done!  Ah!!!!  (The long side on the left will be a project for another day.)

The railings are set back on the columns so that there is more room on the porch.  It was very hard not to center it on the column due to my Symmetry Issues, but I gave in because I knew we'd appreciate those extra inches.  Also please note that no screws are visible in the railing.  That is because my Dad is awesome and meticulous and goes the extra mile for durability and longevity.

This side of the porch won't have a railing for now because it is small and awkward and we aren't sure what our long term plans will be.  One day when we redo those metal railings (they are rusty and so rickety that even my 3 year old nephew asked me why my railings were wiggly) I think we will do the railing on those little sides and have them connect to the stair railings.  For now our solution to stopping people from falling off will be a large (r than currently pictured) planter. Hopefully before the wedding we will build this simple nice looking DIY large planter box that Corey found, but there's a lot of hopefully before the wedding.... going around so we'll see.  We will however patch the hole in the siding using whatever method we come up for on the left side.

Once the stone is on the column this gap will get even smaller:

Now while the railings were going up I was up to a number of smaller projects.  I am on an oil-rubbed bronze spraypaint rampage and will not be stopped. May I present the mailbox before (except I'd already started spraying, oops):

And after:

At some point I'd like to build a more substantial mailbox, but this will do for now.

The free planter before:

And after I sprayed the metal bands:

And I finished spraying the metal railings that I started last weekend and I got a closer before and after:

So those will be replaced at some point, but for now they look much nicer for a few dollars of spraypaint.

My DIY art project also involved spraypaint, but that'll be its own crafty post at some point.

And here is our best score from the giant flea market:

A cast-iron waffle maker from 1910!  and here's the best part:

It rotates!  And you can use it on the stove or on a campfire. I'm in love.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Weekend Update #17

This Weekend We:

  • Installed the 3 tapered columns!
  • Patched the screw holes, sanded them, & primed the columns
  • Took down the fence separating the former prairie area from the yard!
  • Spraypainted the threshold
  • Spraypainted half the railings (ran out of spraypaint)
  • Removed some crab grass
  • Got all the leaves out of the front bushes
  • Cleaned the kitchen sink
  • Celebrated mother's day with our wonderful mothers!

My mom began attacking yard work this weekend. She pulled out all the leaves out of the bushes and trimmed them a bit. In this picture of the flowers you can see all the leaves wedged in there:

And now it's all neat looking:

She also pulled out a bunch of crab grass around the well-head, but no pictures were taken before.  Here's an after:

Stay tuned for this area to be a big landscaped bed!

I did some spraypainting this weekend with Rustoleum Metallic Oil Rubbed Bronze. First I excessively taped off the doorway so I could do the silver threshold of the front door:

Then I sprayed:

And voila! Just imagine the blue stain not so dusty & dirty, the doorway painted a rich chocolate brown, and the door a deep walnut stain:

I also began spraying the railings because they are rusty and gross. Eventually we'll take these loose & rusty railings out and do a white wooden railing to match the porch, but that's too ambitious for now.  This is how bad they look up close:

And here they are sprayed with oil rubbed bronze:

Here is where I ran out. The left side is sprayed and the right isn't:

Corey also got the fence down that separated the yard from the former-prairie area. Here it is with the metal fencing down, but the wooden posts still up. This picture is facing south.

Here's how tall those wooden posts really are:

I took a video of how Corey got a post out, but my phone is new and it turns out I didn't take one :( So here's a picture. The chain wraps around the post and then you push the lever down and it brings up some of the post. After 3 or 4 pumps the post is all the way out:

The fence is down!  The fence is down!

Here's how Corey moved all the giant posts to the edge of the property to await being used for another project:

And now for the tapered columns going up!  There was some plan changing and lots of finagling and measuring, but here's some process pictures.  This is the bottom support for the tapered frame:

And here is my Dad using and epically long drill bit to drill into the upper supports:

Here's the first one installed:

Here's all 3!

And here's all 3 in the light of day and all primed:

It is so, so, so, so fun to watch this idea I had in my head come true!  I can't wait to see the railing up and then the stone columns!

And here's a bonus pic of a free old style pot that I scored from the trash in the rich town I work in. I'm going to clean it up a bit, but I love it:

Up next on the porch agenda is adding some fancy trim to the tops and bottoms of each column to make them look nicely finished. Then we move on to the railing!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Weekend Update #16

This Weekend We:
  • brought over presents from our first wedding shower (thank you!)
  • bought a grill & magically fit it in the car with the shower presents
  • assembled the wheel barrow & fire pit ring that we bought a couple of weeks ago
  • carried painted wood from the old porch (probable lead paint = no burning) that's been sitting in the front yard (fingers crossed that the grass will come back...) to the edge of our property to await being thrown out (we'll probably rent a dumpster for the kitchen renovation this Fall) (so many parentheses)
  • burned half the branches from the bonfire pile (that grass is definitely dead by now)
  • carried 3 wheelbarrows of leaves from the bonfire pile to the compost pile
  • mowed the yard! and even the former prairie
  • organized the garage a little bit
  • glued & painted the 3 capitals for the tapered columns
  • had someone come out to measure & quote us for new basement windows (back to the drawing board because the quote was way out of our budget)
  • disconnected a bit more of the barbed wire from the fence around the prairie area
  • spent an afternoon & evening with my family for my brother's birthday

Here is what the car looked like with all the shower presents, 6 cases of beer for the wedding, 2 random tools from my Dad, & our weekend bags loaded up:

I looked at that and said, yes, we can fit a grill in there.  So I rearranged and Look:

Here's before & after of the backseat. 



Okay, I'm done showing off my spatial skills.

I didn't have my fancy camera this weekend because our wedding photographer was testing it out.  These are all cell phone pics.

We put together the wheelbarrow:

And immediately put it to good use hauling wood:

Here's the new fire pit ring put together and the bonfire pile when we started with it:

And here's the pile after hours and hours of burning, raking up leaves at the bottom of the pile, and hauling away some painted wood:
That grass has been covered since...September or October? It's dead for good :(

This coming weekend we will be making more progress on the tapered columns!!