Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Okay, so I just had to upload a clip of the movie that EVERYONE seems to be referencing ... "The Money Pit" (1986) with Tom Hanks. My personal favorite part is when he gets stuck in the hole in the floor... You can see the original trailer on YouTube at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pmDX0tgONFs

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Starting to Eat the Elephant ... and a Raccoon

Quick post this morning, just to get a few updates out there...

We spent several hours at Big Orange over the weekend (that's the nickname that seems to be sticking) but not as much time as we would have liked. Why? Because the pipes froze and burst at our "other" house (i.e. the one we actually live in) on Sunday morning. I (Ben) left the garage door open overnight allowing this to happen, thank you very much. Spent most of Sunday in the crawl space and looking over the plumber's shoulder while we got things fixed.

Found evidence of a critter who really wanted out of Big Orange (photo below) - if you can't see it very well, it's a raccoon handprint by the window of a 2nd floor bedroom; actually, the wall was covered with his prints. There's a gap between the window and the storm so hopefully he made his way out okay.

Also, found a scrap of cool old wallpaper behind one of the radiators. It would be interesting to see how far back this pattern dates to!

Monday, January 3, 2011

First Stress Out

As the other owner of this grand home, I, Marlo, am posting for the first time and unfortunately it's not pretty. I'm admitting to having a melt down yesterday in regards to the kitchen remodel, or should I say the "kitchen in the making" since there is no kitchen currently. We're repurposing rooms, turning the original 12 x 12 single cook's kitchen into a laundry/mud room and turing the 14 x 20 dining room into the kitchen, since with modern living the kitchen becomes the social gathering place.

Some of the challenges are having two large, low windows on walls where cabinets need to be, wanting to use original butler's panty doors for upper cabinet fronts and needing cabinet boxes built, as well as using found original wardrobe doors for pantry front doors and also needing the box of the pantry built.

We purchased a nice kitchen island from the Habitat for Humanity ReStore store. It came with blue/grey corian countertops, one for the island and two more "extras". Problem is, I don't want blue/grey countertops. Yet with our very small budget, we're wondering if we can afford to purchase countertops for this large island and the base cabinets. I'm looking into concrete countertops...anyone know of a concrete coutertops maker who would be willing to give us a quote?

How to design the needed cabinets, counter space, appliance space and pantry space around the radiator and two tall, low reaching windows is quite challenging. Two kitchen deisgn guys have said it won't work. One said we're talking about creating a $50,000 kitchen. Um, that's not our budget. Other advice givers have said it can work, we're just not sure of the next step to make it work.

Wondering if we could dry wall over the windows on the inside creating space for kitchen use, leaving the outside of the house original, and have custom stained glass windows placed on the outside (originally, the house had custom Tiffany stained glass windows - so this would be in keeping with outside of the original house design).

For two novice restorers, this kitchen challenge is stretching my brain - trying to be creative with space, keep to the integrity of the house design, make it livable for a modern family, and work within a strict, small budget.