Getting settled and changing some things

Change in all things is sweet. ~ Aristotle

We’re mostly settled and have changed and/or fixed some things since we moved in to our new home. We haven’t made any huge changes yet, but we’re planning them. The longer we live here, the more we understand what we want in the long run. We are not the “call the contractor” kind of people. Mike is the contractor! No really, he’s a licensed general contractor. He’s licensed to do it all, but custom finish work and furniture is his forte. He is an artist with wood. I can’t wait to see what he creates for the house. Pretty much everything that has been or will be done to this house will be completed with our own hands. Probably Mike’s more than mine, but I don’t mind getting my hands dirty either. I’m always willing to help. Things may take a little longer to get done, because we only have so much free time (and money), but we’ll know they were done right and for the right price.

One of the first things we did was trim all the trees and clear brush from the entire property. We had to do this to make the insurance company happy, but we were very happy when it was all done. The yard looked so good! We have lots of very tall trees. Our house and yard get a ton of shade. It took a lot of tine just moving the cut branches across the yard. We got help from our son with this project and it still took a couple of weeks to complete.

In September, Mike completely re-plumbed and re-wired the well filtering system in our pump house. When we first moved in the filtering system was being by-passed and the water was full of sediment and was VERY hard. In fact, we had the water tested by the State Of Nevada Water Lab and they sent us a report and then we received a follow-up by the State of Nevada! They wanted to make sure we knew just how hard the water was. We used bottled water until my sweet and very handy hubby got everything up and running correctly.

He also installed an under the counter R/O system for our drinking water. Things are much, much better now! I also learned that you can put a half a cup of white vinegar in the dishwasher to help with hard water film on your dishes. It works great. Luckily, I don’t have to use it anymore. Which reminds me… We also installed a new GE Profile dishwasher. It’s a nice one with the hidden controls and it’s all stainless steel inside. The existing dishwasher did not work and was completely stained and clogged inside from the hard, sediment heavy water. I heart my new dishwasher!

We installed some new, but vintage looking light fixtures around the house. We are planning to return the house to it’s former (vintage) style. The previous owners/tenants had installed some god awful light fixtures. Sometimes, I look at something that was changed and wonder “what the hell were they thinking? Why would they do that?”! Anyway, there are still a couple of ceiling fans that need to be replaced, not because they don’t work, they just don’t work very well (squeak, squeak, squeak…) and they’re very ugly. We live in the old west and ceiling fans are a necessity here. Especially for someone like me, who feels that the only time the A/C should be used is when there’s a possibility that you could DIE otherwise!

We’ve torn out the ugly blue carpet and uncovered the original hardwood floors in the master bedroom, girls room, hallway and living room. We plan to refinish the floors, but they’re in pretty good shape and we’re happy for the time being. We plan to remove the remaining UBC (ugly blue carpet) in the family room and install matching hardwood floors. That room is a newer addition and is just carpet over plywood sub-floor. After we install the new floor, we plan to finish all the floors at the same time. 

Original Hardwood Floors!

Family Room

We tore out the ugly dark 70’s fake paneling that lined the hallway. Underneath we found the original lath and plaster walls. There is some cracking, peeling and chipping under there. For a split second, it looked like there was black mold on the wall underneath. Then we realized that whoever put up this lovely paneling cut it too short and improvised with black spray paint in the seam. Nice! Even with the exposed damage, it looks better than the dark fake wood paneling. We’re planning to install new beadboard paneling throughout the entire hallway. I can’t wait.

Hallway Before

Hallway After

We installed a new (and very girly) ceiling fan in the girls room. Their room (including most of the walls/trim/outlet covers and the ceiling was/is painted an ugly brown/gold/baby poop color which we plan to paint over soon. The remainder of their room is covered in the same paneling as the hallway. For the time being, I’m going to prime and paint the paneling instead of removing it and having to tear out all of the original lath and plaster (which I’m sure is in terrible shape like the hallway). Then it will be painted white and the walls will be painted pink (of course!). We (well, Mike) will also be installing a whole wall of shelving, so we can finally unpack the 10+ boxes of books and toys still sitting against the wall.

Girls Room - Before

The hallway bathroom needs a ton of work. We aren’t even using it right now. It has several different colors of tile in it. It has 1950’s pink and black wall tile, a couple colors of lavenderish tan tile on the shower walls and (when I tore out the disgusting carpet taped down on the bathroom floor) I found a very old (possibly original?) green tile on the floor! I wish the floor tile was salvageable because it looks like it used to be a really pretty color, but it’s beyond saving. I’s too bad because the green tile looks really good next to the hallway hardwood. We’re planning to tear this bathroom out completely and start over. We bought an awesome claw foot tub with the shower enclosure and all the hardware on Craigslist (a great deal for $300) and we bought a new granite counter top with double sinks at a garage sale for $15! We also need to buy a new dual flush toilet. The toilet currently in this bathroom was manufactured in 1932 (3 years before the house was built) and uses so much water when flushed that you can practically hear the water table being lowered! It will be awesome when the bathroom is all remodeled.

Hallway Bath - Before

Hall Bath floor tile next to hardwood floor (ignore the tape residue please)

The claw foot tub we bought)

I’ve been addicted to Pinterest for the last several months. I’ve had so many ideas for the house running through my mind and I love being able to find examples of ideas and pin them to my boards. AWESOME! I can’t wait to get it all done!

I hope your new year is starting out well!

I’m linking up to:


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Frugal Hardwood Flooring Find! « Planetpowers
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