Wednesday, April 20, 2011

With a Little Bit of Luck. . .

with a little bit of bloomin' luck. . . we may be in our house before Mother's Day! Before the spring rains set in, there had been some mention of getting in by my birthday which happens to fall on Easter Sunday this year, but it ain't gonna happen.  I would never hold the builders to this, and couldn't even if I wanted to, because there are just too many things that have to come together to have made that work.  If the truth be known, I'm not quiet ready to move in myself and in all honesty, we never planned on being in the house before the end of June! SO the way I'm looking at it, we are about two months ahead of schedule!
      I will admit that every time we are at the house now, I am soooooooooo not ready to leave the lake when  its time to go. I wish I could put into words the serenity I feel just being there and have felt since day one. I know that might change because, I am a people person, but after these past two years on this roller coaster ride of remodeling, selling, moving and buillding a house, maybe I AM ready for this change. I already love my new neighbors and we're looking forward to spending time with them as well as having  the "down" time for the two of us in our little retirement home.
      We have spent the last two days at the house for several hours at a time. There has been a LOT going on. One of the biggest projects was the installation of the double mantle and bookcases.  I posted the first phase of this project when the bookcases went in and the second stage when the granite surround went on and now this is a view of the third phase. I hope the fourth phase I post, it will be all done and painted. Can't wait!

     The center wall of the top mantle will  be painted the color of the walls and the doors are having a bit of picture frame moulding applied to them as we speak. . . hence the missing doors on the bookcases. We cannot believe how this piece has made the 18 ft. ceilings in this room seem less daunting. I just hope I can find those 3 ft. tall urns that I have envisioned  to go on the top of each bookcase, and then, someone with a tall ladder to help me get them up there!  The cabinet maker, Brad, has asked for a photo when we get settled and have everything in its place. Between his expertise of building it and my sketch of how I wanted it to look (not to mention some minor alterations here and there to make it all work) there will NOT be another one like it anywhere.
     Along with this project, the granite for the island was installed. They had to wait until the driveway was cured enough to bring this 500 lb. + piece of granite to us. We were visiting the Masons when the granite guys came and when they left, we all walked down the hill to check it out.  Love it!

     Now that the granite is in, time for the tilers to come back and finish the backsplash. As I may have told you, I wasn't sure what I wanted to do for the backsplash.  There are so many ideas and things one can do to make it look special but I just wasn't sure that was the way I wanted to go. I opted for a very simple tumbled tile. . . but, we had it laid in a pattern that gave it a "special look".  This is what we came up with.

      And for a closer look. . .  it will be grouted tomorrow, but you get the picture. I know this bar is getting a lot of play, but it gives you a little bit of all of it. The cabinets and their color, the granite, and the backsplash design. In case you don't remeember, this is a herringbone design layed on the diagonal. This will probably cost me big bucks because of all the cuts and wasted tiles but what the heck, I'm going for style!

     These are just two projects I was overseeing sitting on my bucket (the builders left a 5 gal. paint bucket for me to carry from place to place to sit on during these loooong days). H found himself roaming where ever there was a sub working. Along with the cabinet maker, the two tilers, (a shower guy had installed the guest shower the day before) and outside, the Alabama Power Company was hooking us up so that we now have electricity to the house and to the boathouse, not to mention the builders putting up the bead board ceiling on the terrace so that the electricians can hang the last three ceiling fans.  But in the meantime, the electricians were in and out putting up the sconces for the master bath and half bath. There is something going on everywhere you look these days!
    Below is H's vanity. There is a big mirror being framed, using the trim from the cabinets, that will go in between the sconces.

                               My vanity will look almost like his. Only I get two mirrors and three lights!

      As of this afternoon we have been "banned" from the inside of the house. The painters will be back touching up and the floors will be sanded and stained for the FIRST time.  BUT, we will be back on site on Thursday when we meet with the landscaper to see just how much we will be able to do. All our neighbors have told us that this stage is a work in progress. All their lawns are in bloom now and look lovely but like ours, it wasn't done at the time they moved in. We hope to at least  put the sod in, the water system (we will be using  the lake to water) and a few shrubs or bushes. This year we might  just have to settle by being "pot" growers.
     NOTE: We have been given permission to come in on Saturday when Liz and Jarrett will be here and see it for the first time since Thanksgiving! Boy, does it ever look different since then!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Bits and Pieces. . .

     Trying to think of an appropriate name for this blog was kinda hard.  Each time we go to the house something or another has been completed or added and as promised, I have taken a photo. Now I have all these wonderful photos to share with you but there is no rhyme or reason for this post. Just bits and pieces of things I wanted to share with you. So you can imagine my surprise when I found this song by the Dave Clark Five! Do any of you (other than my BIL Paul, who I am sure knows it) remember it?
     Okay, walk with me, talk with me as we take this photo tour.  Our first stop as we enter the house is the new foyer light.  Hope you can tell something with the plastic wrap but believe me, it's a good thing it got covered. This was the companion piece that goes with the chandelier which is pictured below.

     The dining room chandelier was not covered when I took the photo but it is now.  Those silk organza shades could have been a disaster.  (Good thing I showed you the pineapple pendants before they got covered.)

     Let's see, have I shown you the bookcase and fireplace surround in the great room? I chose Absolute Black granite for the surround to balance this end of the room. This is only the first installment to the fireplace. The main fireplace and mantle have not been built yet nor has the second mantle for the top. It will go up higher than the book cases on either side and the TV will fit in between. This was our solution/attempt to bring down the 18 foot ceiling. I want to place some urns on top odf the bookcases and found some lovely buffet lights to go on the cabinets. It isn't finished yet, but this will give you the "before" and then you can see the "after" hopefully, next week.

      Since I did not draw this to scale when I gave my rendition to the cabinet maker, I was not aware how big the doors would be on the bottom. After I see the double mantle in place and all the details on them, I may or may not need to add a little something to those doors. My guess is it will be picture frame moulding, if anything, that is like what we put on the walls below the chair rail in the dining room.  Below is the granite on the fireplace.

    Out the great room door you will see that the deck railing has been installed.  Still needs caps on all the posts but wanted to show you this and the fans that have been installed.  Now all we need is the rocking chairs which we found at Sam's yesterday but was in the wrong car to bring them home. Oh well, guess we'll make another trip to Birmingham this week end!

     Rosanne, when you are not on the swim deck sunning, I'm sure Paul will bring you sandwiches out here
Back inside I see the glass doors have been put on the bar. The lighting was installed and now we need to find the glass shelves we wanted to go in these cabinets.

       Downstairs the flooring has been installed and really looks nice.  We went with a laminate flooring down here after we heard the price to tile it. We wanted something to withstand the ins and outs from the lake for our  guests and granddog as well. :)  Most of it will be covered with a rug in the center of the room.  We put the same flooring up in the Croft as well but I as saving all those photos for a post all its on. Be looking for a post entitled . . . Stairway to Heaven.

I asked the builder for the self mopping floor, but this is what I got.  Don't you just love the dust on the floors already?    

    I thought I'd add this one of the Lower level bar in case you hadn't seen it. Wait, is it me or is one of my drawers missing?  Can you tell I just randomly point and shoot and not really check out the subject?  With all the work in progress, I gave up trying to "stage" photos. You get what you get, and you don't get upset. That's what I use to tell my kidlets when I was teaching preschool. It seemed to work for them.
    Next Monday the house will be alive with subs. The tile guy will be finishing the backsplash in the kitchen, the cabinet maker/firefighter will  install the mantles and tweak them, the closet man will be installing shelving in all the closets, the AV guys will complete their installations and work on the security systems, and the granite handlers will bring in the 8 foot piece for the island. Yay! We found and purchased the counter stools for the island!

     I think we will spend a lot of time at this island, eating, drinking and just plain socializing.  I love the fact that they will fit nicely under the island and not be in the way. I had thought I wanted backs on them at first but everything we looked at wasn't comfortable, or my short legs couldn't reach the rungs, or it wasn't the look I was going for or they were just too expensive (we need at least 4 or maybe 6). These were comfortable, fit my legs, the wood matched the island wood, and they were on sale! We'll take 4 please!

   Well, this catches you up on things not seen in other posts but there is more to come. We are now at crunch time and we still need the plumber, painters and floor guys back one more time!  We have set up delivery of the boat for the first week in May, contacted the landlord, are making arrangements to get our Virginia shipment here, met with the estimater for the move from here to the lake and showed him the way and have just about run out of room in this rental with all the purchases made to this point.  Good luck Liz, Jarrett and Savannah finding your bedroom when you come for Easter and to help me celebrate my birthday!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Sittin' on the Dock of the Bay. . .

     This is where I will be when Baby Boat comes to its new home on Lake Mitchell. Frankie, our boat house/seawall builder and his great helpers have been working hard to get the boat house in "ship shape". We would like to send the word to Chattanooga to bring Baby Boat home, hopefully by the end of the month!
     I have been snapping photos of the different stages of progress as the boat house was being built, but I decided to wait until it was completed before sharing them with you.
     So without further ado. . .
     The first photo is the footprint of the deck that the boat house will be built around. We decided to go with a two stall boat house for future additions. The smaller stall is just the right size for a jet ski for  now but can be cut out and made larger if we decide to get pontoon boat later. . .much later.

      We added a little walkway from the sea wall to the boat house because it is so shallow at the edge of our property.  We had to extend the boathouse out as far as allowed so the water was deep enough to get our boat in and out. The walkway is only about 8 feet long and I think it looks nice.
      The next photo was taken when it was framed out.  Now it's starting to look like a boat house.

        I am so glad Frankie's wife couldn't see him walking the center beam on this boat house in the photo below.   I was astonished as I sit in the window of my bedroom watching all of this take place. One thing I observed is that boat house/seawall builders  don't walk like regular folks. They always walk with one foot in front of the other at all times, even on land! See the plank going across from the boat house deck to the barge? They would walk back and forth across that plank with long pieces of lumber on their shoulders and never look down. Amazing!

      After this stage, the trusses went up and I missed the whole thing. I would have like to have had a picture of that to share with you but it wasn't meant to be. Unfortunately that was the day I was scheduled for a root canal! 
      The next time I saw the boat house it looked like this with tar paper on the roof.  There were only two days in between these last two photos!


       We designed this boat house so that not only was the boat covered but we would have enough covered space for a table and chairs. Remember the green wrought iron furniture in Virginia? It now has a new home. There is to be an uncovered space as well to be used as a swim deck/sunning area. It is also a place for visiting boats to tie up to when they stop by for a bit of refreshment. (Then the covered space will come in handy.) Talking about visitors stopping by. . .this is a very common practice among folks living on this lake. I can't tell you how many times we have already met people this way. Our neighbors from directly across the lake came by in their boat  introduced themselves from the water and told us they would be by again soon to see everything when there wasn't so much going on. On the day this photo was taken, a guy on a jet ski drove right up into the boat house stall to introduce himself, welcomed us to the lake and told us how great the house was looking!  This is the view he saw from our boathouse!

      Today we went to the house and I couldn't believe my eyes. In just a little less than 2 weeks, we now have a boat house! H went down to the boathouse and said the view from the swim deck was really nice! There is a rail along the back side to place chairs and lounges. The front section is open and ready for our first visitors to tie up to! In this view you can see the covered area inside the boat house for those who don't want the sun.  The boat lift is being fabricated I am told and will be installed when Frankie and his wife return from a little get away trip. He will also be here when Baby Boat arrives from Chattanooga for any adjustments to the lift.  I met Frankie and his wife the day he came over to give us an estimate for the sea wall and boat house. His wife Pat and I became instant friends!  She has been on site several times during this build and has listened to me rattle on and on about my decorating decisions. She is delightful and I look forward to getting to know both of them a lot more and enjoying some time with us here at the lake in the near future.

                 Sure will be glad when all that red dirt gets covered with sod.  Soon, very soon. . .I am told.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

You Light Up My Life. . . .

    Come on now, you might as well confess, you KNEW that  this would be the song title I would use for the post when all the lighting went in. :) Even though there are many more photos that you will see in this post, I had to use it.  Not all the lights are in but there is enough to share at this point. Besides, I can't wait until they are all in to show you my Ta-Da photo!

     This took a little pursuasion on my part and I am soooo glad I stuck to my guns. I really love them! As some of you may or may not know, our first home was in Hawaii and since then, I have always had a pineapple in our home as a symbol of hospitality. OK, so this house has three!  Anyway,when I first saw these pendants, I thought they were cute. . . but the more I thought about it, I convinced myself I HAD to have them. H had to have more time to think about it, but if the truth be known, I think he really likes them too! In case you need a more up close and personal. . . This is so me, don't you agree?

Mike, our electrician has been installing lights and fans for more than a week now and still has more to do when they come in next week. The chandelier and foyer lights are on their way! We are waiting on mirrors so he can install the sconces in a couple of bathrooms but most of the over mirror lighting has been installed. This is just one of the bathrooms for you to see.

   There will be a full sheet mirror under these lights when we are done. (This is the bathroom that had to have the marble redone because what we originally picked out from a 3x4 piece of marble looked terrible when we saw the whole piece installed.)  Yes, we had to eat that one! The kitchen and laundry room has all the under cabinet lights installed and the bar has lights in the cabinets.    
       As I mentioned, this post has lots of other photos that I wanted to share. Below are a few photos taken today of the granite that was installed this week. Love it! The bar and kitchen backsplash should be installed next week, so you will see these photos again. The lower level bar is in the lighter granite.

Below are two of the thirteen fans that are in this house and that are on the porch, deck and terrace. I wish you could really see the color of the master bedroom in this picture. Guess you'll just have to come for a visit. :)  The other photo is the fan in the lower level great room. Which reminds me, we got the first reupholstered piece of furniture back yesterday and it looks great! It is the green wingback and ottoman that will go in the lower level great room.

      The real reason we went to the house today was because we now have a DRIVEWAY! No more wondering how I would get down that slope after a rain.  Our diveway is a lot steeper that I had originally thought it would be but I can say, it's NOT as steep as some of the driveways on The Ridge.
  NOTE: For all of you wondering when it would happen, today was the day! As I was walking back up the hill in our neighbor's uncleared property (our driveway was still wet), I did indeed come, up close and personal with my first critter! One good thing I learned even at this weight, I can still run! Enough said.

Oops! Didn't mean to show the boathouse until it was all finished this weekend, but what the heck, you knew it was being built. I will have more detailed and up close photos in my next post. Meanwhile, back to the driveway and terrace.

     With the terrace poured, it gives me an idea of what kind and how much outdoor furniture we will need to buy. We have already been trying out rockers for the deck and there will definately be a swing under that screened porch that juts out in the background of this photo!

     The boathouse will be finished this weekend if we decide on the size of the swim deck. Right now it is set to be 16 ft. x 16 ft. But, is that big enough? The Alabama Power Company says it can be a little larger but we will have to make an amendment to the original permit.  There is a large space in the boathouse that is under roof for tables and chairs but what if more people want to be in the sun? Oh well, that decision is all on H, I made the decision about the pineapple pendants!