Good question. The answer is that when we bought the house we intended to repaint and recarpet it, which it desperately needed. The house was built over 15 years ago and had not seen any new paint in that time. In fact, in many places it was difficult to tell if it had even been painted, beyond primer, in the first place! The cheap, builder-grade carpet was stained and worn, and there were many, many holes in the walls -- not to mention the black staining on all the door trim and baseboards due to some sort of lubricant used on the door hinges. We didn't get around to those projects our first time living here, due to Beck being born on our move-in day and due to our unexpected relocation a few months later. Needless to say, having tenants in the place for the past 19 months didn't help the condition of the place.
But why is the list of projects so long? Because we are doing the work ourselves in order to do it in as affordable a way as possible. If we weren't doing the work ourselves, then the list would be short and would simply say, "Hire someone to install flooring. Hire someone to prep and paint entire house." Things would already be done by now -- but at several times the cost. Or, rather, things would not be done, because we don't have several times the money to put into this project!
Yes, there are "extras" on the list -- a few things we have undertaken to make the house more functional for us and for future owners. These are things like the rebuilt fireplace, the expanded kitchen island, the removal of an odd, space-cutting wall, and the change to the stairway that creates some usable "entry" space. Then there are the additional aesthetic updates, again to make the house more pleasing to us and to future owners. The house can't stay circa 1996 forever! So, away go the shiny brass light fixtures and towel bars and the pickled oak-look cabinetry. And hopefully at some point the peach-gray laminate countertops.
Many of these projects could be handled piecemeal over the course of the next several months (and some of them will be), but we decided to take advantage of the two months of company-paid storage of our goods to really go for it with the renovation. So much easier than moving furniture and shrouding it in dropcloths every time you need to do a project!
I finished painting the second coat in the master bathroom (toilet room) and closet last night, while Tyson painted the downstairs ceiling. The rest of the master bedroom is waiting for its second coat right now, and the downstairs ceiling needs some touch ups. This is the last step in the master bedroom before flooring. Yay! (unless I get around to painting the vanity cabinets right now). I need to paint the trim and walls in the laundry room and powder room downstairs and they will be ready for flooring too. Yay!
I'm on a really slow, "borrowed" internet connection, so I don't want to try to upload too many pics, but "before" pics can be seen here: http://www.1521devonshire.blogspot.com/. It actually looked two to three years worse than this by the time we started this remodel. Hopefully I'll be able to share "after" pics soon. Here's one that shows the carpet and new paint on the new stair landing Tyson built (the large square step replaces a couple pie- or wedge-shaped steps that tripped up our kids and didn't allow for a small corner shelf or coat hook area on the (now gray) wall).
We also try to have a little fun here and there. We have been doing an outing on Sunday before church, since our meetings don't start until 1:00 p.m. We went to the Willow Park Zoo one week, and Ryan's Place Park another. These cute pics were taken at Ryan's Place.
Both boys have had haircuts recently, and Beck especially is looking grown up. He *thinks* he is grown up, too. Very much in a two-year-old phase of wanting to do things by himself that he can't quite do yet, then throwing tantrums when I do the things for him. He has a very engaging and enthusiastic personality and brings lots of smiles and laughter to our home.
Sawyer participated in his first Primary program on Sunday. He had his part all memorized for almost two weeks leading up to the program. The day of the program we were practicing one last time, and he started to say something different...improvising his own part. Uh-oh. His part was to be "When I pray, I am talking to Heavenly Father." He started to tell me he wanted to talk about Jesus Christ instead. I eagerly awaited his turn in the program, to see what would happen. He got up to the microphone and said, "Ummm......." Then went on to talk extemporaneously about Jesus and also possibly mixed in some unintelligible bits of his assigned part. In the middle he repeated, "Ummm...." and went on with his thoughts until he was removed from the microphone by the primary president. Something had me thinking, "like father like son," haha. It was very cute, and the audience got a kick out of it of course. He would have been equally cute saying his memorized assigned part, though. He also exhibited some very squirrely behavior throughout the program. He was kind of "that kid" in the program. Oh well, he's *my* kid, and very cute! Beck kept yelling at him from the audience, and acting extremely squirrely himself. I was exhausted by the time sacrament was over, and to be honest we went home and put the kids (and ourselves) down for naps. "Exhausted" is kind of the theme of my life right now. I'm in my third trimester, I'm a biiiiiig girl, and these kids and projects are wearing me out!
Well, back to my painting!