Wednesday, May 16, 2012

We have been working on the kitchen...alot.  Initially, the kitchen looked like this:

Not bad, if you enjoy cooking and living in an oak cave.  The cabinets were too big and bulky.  Because they were corner units, they were difficult to get anything out of there once I got it in.  I wanted to open it up a little, without spending any money or limiting my storage.  So we started to do this:
All was proceeding.  We had a tad bit of difficulty removing the cabinets...but got it done.  If you have a keen eye you will note that the wall behind the cabinets is actually plywood.  
 So then we (Mark) removed the bulkheads, revealing the old original outside wood siding of the back of the house; as well as an OLD animal nest.  LOVELY.  INTERESTING.  UUHHGG!
Additional progress...goes alot faster with help :)  Closed up the wall and ceiling.  Replaced many ceiling tiles and added many ceiling tiles.  Peeled off dark blue cherry )not cheery) wallpaper, added beadboard, shelving and white paint everywhere.  

This weekend we plan on finishing the kitchen.  Black paint on the lower cabinets, White on the remaining uppers.  And finishing touches....  

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

First ONE in the Water Annual Contest

Bryce S - on April 2, 2012, Water temperature was a relaxing 38 degrees.

Following milliseconds behind, the honorable mentions go to the rest of the neighbor kids,: Logan, Mia & Cooper; as well as our own Gracie.  Yup, they are all crazy.  It was cold.  My toes got wet, and that was enough for me.  

Way to go Bryce!!!!  He quickly received his $50; and his name will appear on the wall trophy identifying him for the first year. You are in the history books, Bryce!!  

It is his to defend for next year. 

And, as promised, here is the pic of the back of the house without the deck.  Looks halfway normal now, huh?
Did I mention how exciting this is to us all??  

The Deck Is Down...repeat...The Deck Is Down is the deck...the ugly deck.  One of the reasons we almost did not purchase this house.  (The other was the dining room.) You might wonder about the view from the deck?  Can you see the lake? (no) Is it accessable from the second floor? (no) Is there an electrical outlet for a rocking tikibar? (no) We just really cannot figure out anything, other then furnishing the second story.  It is impossible to get anything larger then a twin bed mattress up the stairs to the second floor inside the house.  So we used the deck, and crammed everything through the window that we thought we may want upstairs in our lifetime in the cottage. 

But now the deck is down.  Trust me when I say the neighbors rejoiced.

Frank is ecstatic...a personal victory over the deck. 

The deck was lucky that it stayed up as long as it did...hence the name, the lucky deck. 

They were so proud of it, as you can see, in the picture for the real estate listing, it is even labeled "deck on back of house" if we didn't know.

You can look forward to a post showing the back of the house without the deck...

Monday, April 30, 2012

The Blues

A New Outlook... = progress in a few spaces

Here is family room as it was when we purchased the house:

Now with wall color (the third color blue in the house), a white ceiling, removal of all things brown
and new seating...a brighter room and outlook on life at the lake... 

And then a new wall went up. 
And with the wall, a new bedroom (more on that later) and normal rectangular family room. 
Love my new heavy, solid wood door. 
Needs some paint and a cool old handle. 

The enamal gas fireplace will be removed...its' future uncertain. 
But we know it will be gone...somewhere else. 
Paint the new wall, finish the trim and photos on the wall...we be done with this room...I think.

Monday, April 23, 2012

The downstairs bathroom...

We added some color to the walls, and painted up those brown oak cabinets...

It is a very quirky bathroom.

The first thing you see when you walk in the front door is the toilet...that is if you allow your eyes to wander beyond the vine encrusted wallpaper covering every available wallspace in the dining room and stairway hall.  The bathroom is maybe 8-10 feet long, but the floor has an actual hill in it; adding an element of risk to your bathing/showering experience.  If your feet are wet, or you are moving any faster then a large turtle, the probability of a slip or fall has been mathematically determined to be in the dangerously high category.  The underwriters of our liability insurance are concerned. Additionally, if you are over 5'6" tall, it is likely that you will bonk your head (while showering) on the overhang in the shower...probably more then once. But it is clean, freshly painted, and actually a lot cuter then previously.  So if you do fall and injure yourself, the risk of infection is actually quite low.

Another element of risk inherent to your showering experience is the water temperature.  If the dial is a clock: 4:30=scorching hot. 5:30 arctic cold.  BATHER BEWARE ;o)

Can you see yourself emerging from this room with bright red scorched skin from the hot water that made you jump back in the shower so fast that you bang your head on the overhead ceiling that drops down a foot in the middle of the shower. So you have a goose egg on your forehead, and then while drying off and rubbing your head and patting dry your freshly scorched skin you slip on the uneven floor limiting any remaining mobility?

But like I said, at least it is alot cuter now then it was.  

Before and Afters: 
Do you like the flush sign I found at the local antique store?
Here is a better look at the cabinets we well as the location of the 1-2" downhill slope.

Next up for this location is a change in the vinyl floors.  Suggestions?

Monday, April 16, 2012

The Raccoon Room

So here are two before pictures of the room we lovingly refer to NOW as the raccoon room.  The second photo here is actually from the real estate it actually look great.  It doesn't show the raccoon pee stains in the ceiling or the vintage art deco light, or how it dripped down into the carpet.  Lovely, I know. (We did not know this until after we purchased the house...because for me, that might have been a deal breaker.  It doesn't show the huge separation between the walls and the ceiling. or the ugly cracks on the wall.  Frank, armed with a pounds of caulking, patience (you heard me right people), a ladder, scrub brush, steam cleaner and paint supplies, focused and turned it into what it is today.  The old raccoon room is now complete with the last resort pull out couch, x-box kinect, lazyboy rocker/recliner and 2 rockband guitars, keyboard, drums and mic set.  Our first room completed.  Way to go Frank.  These photos are immediately following the ritualistic cleanse, and we have since added a few things, like the TV, xbox stuff, flip flop table.  This will be a room of fun, raccoons and lighthouse stuff, where we hope to have more fun then the previous raccoon residents.

  Here are looking back to the day that Frank and Gracie painted the Raccoon Room, taking a quick break to watch the sunset, which is just 4 houses away :)  This last picture is also from the real estate listing, and it is what we look forward to this summer...the view of Lake Michigan from the front yard.  Well actually the street in front of the front yard. :)  Regardless, we will be there...well not in the street, but on the beach :) 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Checking things out.

Christmas break walk on the pier.
A warm St. Patty Day unset from the lighthouse...
Some random photos from the past several weeks... The weather has been mild and beautiful, so we are enjoying time outdoors during our first winter up north.

Lola, in her usual manic style, is very eager to enjoy the walks, sand and water.

Zeke's approach is a bit more hesitant...preferring to take things in from the distance, while contemplating his future with his new noisy, dominant, manic canine sister. I think you will agree...he appears concerned.

Frank is developing a wall plaque commemorating "First one in the water" each year. Lola was determined to get her name on the plaque the first 44 degree water. Did I mention there is a cash prize associated with the first plunge of the year? Frank is putting up $50 to the first one neck high. Name on the plaque, and $50...Good Luck. The water has been warmer this year compared to recent years, so we are expecting our first annual commemoration quite early!

I will soon start posting pictures of the home, inside and out; progress and lack there of, then and now...