Tuesday, June 30


In my previous post, I talked about how we had some paint on the exterior.  When we finally had some color on the walls.. I noticed something scary.  I don't know why I didn't see it before.  I guess it took seeing the contrast of the paint against the window and trim for it to click.

Our main gable is the wrong size.  It's the wrong scale. It's supposed to look like this:

Instead, it looked like this:

Can you see the difference?  Once I saw it, I couldn't un-see it.  It drove me crazy.
I freaked out a bit.  This was BIG.

I pulled up pictures of both.  Side by side.. one on my phone, one on my tablet.  

Yup.  Things were wrong.  Very wrong. 

I noticed it, but I was worried I hadn't caught it in time.   And then it hit me, Adam doesn't know.  He hasn't caught it yet... 




..and I have to be the one to tell him. 

Now keep in mind, that at this point in our build.. we're both pretty tired.  We're really close to just being over the whole process.  We're tired of not having our own place.  We're tired of not having a kitchen, a bedroom, a space for the kittens to romp and play.  We're tired of it taking so long.

How did I not see that!?!
We've been on and off overjoyed and extremely frustrated with our build process.  And this was one of those frustrated weeks before Gable-gate ever happened.  

There had been points recently where we had even explored leaving this house behind, and looking for something already built.  We had a few contenders selected.  But we never walked away...

Needless to say, I was not looking forward to telling my sweet, kind, and "living with his mother-in-law for over 4 months"  husband that they had messed up the whole front of our house.
Clear as day!  And I still missed it!
So I, like the grown-ass woman I am, completely avoided talking to him about it for a day.. I texted our Realtor first.  Then I called her.  Then about 10 emails back and forth between her and the builder and me.  And they said they'd fix it, at no cost to us.

Damn right -  at no cost to us! WE didn't mess it up.  And they didn't even realize anything was wrong!

Our builder promised that our timeline wouldn't be affected.  I hoped it wouldn't, but we still have a ways to go..

I told Adam before dinner that night.  He took it way better than I did.  I think I was the angrier out of the two of us, and that's pretty rare.  He reminded me that he knew there was no way I would be willing to walk away from this house.. and for now, we just have to deal with the delays and be as patient as possible.

The next day, June 24, 2015,  it was patched.  It's still not perfect.. and not exactly right.

But I think it'll be okay.  I still obsess over it a bit, and will until it's completely finished and I can forget that this debacle ever happened.

Part of my obsession - I had MSPaint do a number on the front to make sure I'd be okay with the slight difference in slope.  Seeing it all one color helped.
I never claimed to be an artiste..

For now, the proportions are better.  And once they replace the hardi siding and the soffitts, I doubt anyone (but my beloved blog readers) would ever know anything was wrong.

Photobombing dumpster!

Until it's all one color and looking lovely.. I think I'll keep hearing a little bit of Whitney Houston in my head..
"It's not right, but it's okay."

For your listening and 90's throwback pleasure, I present.. Ms. Houston.

Now if we could just pack our bags, and up and leave into the new house.. which I am still loving, imperfect gable and all..

As everyone told us at our wedding (when the fire broke out and almost burned down a historic building).. "at least it'll be a good story."  This one isn't as dramatic, but it does make our building experience that much more memorable.

Making memories with Gable-Gate 2015 - days 156-158 of our build 

Saturday, June 27

like the civil war....

I feel like our exterior paint color is like a battle of the Civil War.. sometimes gray is in the lead, sometimes blue..

Based on the bright afternoon sun, the eventual turnout is the same.  Blue wins.

On June 22nd, they did some painting at the house. I was excited to see the exterior color on something more than just a swatch.  I was surprised however, when I saw how blue things turned out.
A painted gable and a spot on the front porch- very navy/cobalt.

Still, as expected -  the colors change with the light..
A little later in the day and we're seeing more gray tones. 

I think we'll be happy with it.  Adam and I both love blue and gray and I think it'll be a nice contrast to the other homes in the neighborhood.  Also, I think the light trim will help everything pop... now to see what the door color looks like.

Oh!  And do you see what I see?
Pallets of shingles behind our trash pile.  Finally, we might actually be getting a roof!

Shingles and a slathering of paint -  156 days into our build.

Wednesday, June 24

stairs and a sunset...

There isn't much going on at the lot other than wiring right now.  They still haven't finished running the electrical, but we keep checking every day to see if our punch list is taken care of.  It's June 19th and things are slow going again.

One of the many crazy bundles of wire.

I mentioned before that we had to make some changes to the stairs.  They were too steep and didn't pass code.  Our new stairs are finally framed in and are much easier, and safer, to navigate.

I like the addition of the small landing and the turned stairs add a nice detail.  We lost a little wall space and some floor space, but I think we'll be able to work it out.

The new landing blocks the original door into the workshop/storage area, so they added a new door into that space (to the left of the stairs in this picture.)

At this point, the siding is being caulked and prepped for paint.  Electrical is still not finished, and I think the plumbing is finally ready for inspection.  I'm antsy for a roof.. but we'll see what happens next.

In the meantime, let's enjoy another summer sunset.

Stairs, wiring, and sunset -  153 days into our build.

Tuesday, June 23

150 days in...

Adam and I had been talking about building for a while.  It started off as daydreaming, then eventually became a reality.  

We thought long and hard about building -  trying to decide if it was right for us.  We knew how picky we could both be, and after touring homes far above our price point and only finding one or two we liked.. we knew that to get exactly what we wanted - we'd probably need to build.

In a conversation with our Realtor today, about an issue with the house (more on that later), she told me to remember why we decided to build.  She reminded me to think about how perfect things will be when we move in.

As we face yet another setback in our timeline.  As we take a few steps back and away from move in day.  And as we continue to test our patience.. I have to remind myself of how far we've come from that wooded lot.  I have to remind myself that one day it will be finished; it will be perfect.

I have to remind myself that this is our home, the one we chose, and another day or week or month of waiting is just a blip when compared to the next twenty years.

Be patient.  Trust.  It will be worth it.

Progress so far - 150 days into our build on June 16, 2015.

Friday, June 19

don't take it for granite...

We were still packing up our first house when we scheduled our tour of the granite warehouse to choose our slab.  We knew we were going to upgrade from our builder's selections for the kitchen, and had a certain type in mind.

Ever since we first started shopping for our kitchen remodel in our first nest, the Man and I have been dreaming about and drooling over Blue Pearl granite.  It's striking and we've been drawn to it for, officially, years now.
Image result for blue pearl graniteROoh.. ahhh... look at all the metallic flecks!

We had seen it in a few homes and thought it would look great with dark cabinets. 
We'd seen it a lot with lighter spaces.. and were a little worried it might be too blue for our space.  Still, we were willing to take the risk.
But then the PRICE.  Blue Pearl is VERY expensive. VERY expensive.
Not "Take a Risk" expensive.  So our builder suggested we check out some Black Pearl at his supplier's warehouse.
It looked like it had potential when we were checking it out online, but we missed the variation that the Blue Pearl had.  It seemed very flat when we saw it in person and lacked the dimension we wanted.

At the granite warehouse, it was a challenge to keep our focus.  There were so many options, but we really wanted to stay as close to budget as possible.
Rows and rows to choose from... instead of getting sidetracked, we tried to keep our blinders on and focus on the picks our consultant suggested.

We didn't fall for the black pearl.. awesome potential Pirates of the Caribbean allusions aside.  It just didn't have the dimension and depth we were looking for.  Our consultant asked what colors we planned on using in the house or the feel we were going for in the kitchen.  We knew grey was a big part of the plan.. with stainless appliances and dark cabinets.

She walked us across the aisle to a dust covered slab.. what about "Steel Grey"?
Image result for steel grey granite
Why.. hello lovely!  
It was a happy medium with a little glimmer from a few metallics, depth and dimension, and not quite as dark as the Black Pearl or blue as the Blue Pearl.

After a quick splash from a water bottle to wipe away the dust -  we were set.  She confirmed the price would be a little more than the negotiated deal for Black Pearl.. but MUCH, MUCH less than Blue.
We actually saved enough green by going gray for me to feel comfortable splurging on a decorative edge for the granite on our island.

Most of our counters will have a rounded edge, except for our slab in the center of the kitchen.  It'll have a nice touch of a waterfall edge to set it off a bit.

Something like this, but in a deep sparkly grey.

We had already chosen the granite for our bathrooms (New Caldonia) but now we had our kitchen granite chosen too.  I hope it all is pretty cohesive and looks good together when installed.   We'll have to wait and see!
New Caldonia for the bathroom counters

Thursday, June 18

siding by siding..

Things haven't slowed down this week since my little hissy fit last week.  We've seen some great progress and even have met with both the project manager and electrician since then.  
The siding is finished and ready for the painters to get to work! HVAC was also mostly completed when we checked everything out.

The meeting with the project manager was to discuss the location of some of the plugs/electricals we were adding.. and a tiny issue with our stairs.  I was pretty anxious to see what his solution to our stair issue was, but I think everything will work out for the better.

Our house is built into a slope (yes, another hill for Adam to hate mowing) and because of the grade, the framers actually added a foot to the basement height.  The PRO to this is that our basement will have 10 foot ceilings.  Whoo hoo!  The CON -  our stairs were built too steep and did not meet code. 
Pardon the bad picture quality - this was the only shot of the stairs I had.  They were really steep and NARROW.  Like hold on to the 2x4's and walk really carefully, narrow.

 The solution proposed by the project manager was to relocate a door and add a landing and a few stairs at the basement entrance.  I think this will be fine, but it hasn't been corrected in the framing yet.  I think I will probably stay slightly anxious until I can see how it will actually look once they get it re-framed.

I'm glad we marked everything because a few days later, after we met, the electrician had started working.  Here is the progress as of Monday, June 15th.

Can lights and HVAC in the ceiling of the kitchen.

The beginnings of our circuit breaker panel.

Cables running from the Master to the basement -  I felt like there were wires everywhere we turned.  It was so exciting!

Finally caught the basement bathroom on a day where there was enough light out.

Spots marked for plugs, data ports, and switches on the Man's media wall. 

I know it may not seem like much, but for us -  it's so wonderful to be able to walk through the house and start to see where light fixtures are going to go, where we will plug in all the electronics, switch on the lights in the middle of the night when I get freaked out by a random noise, and debate on the best plugs for Christmas tree placement.  

Note -  heck yeah I added plugs in specific places just for decorating for the holidays.  The project manager looked at me like I was crazy when I told him I wanted a plug in a specific place for our Christmas tree in the bedroom.. you can't be as short as I am without a little elvish holiday spirit, it's impossible.

I'm sure next visit we'll see even more wires and cords and breaker boxes -  oh my!

HVAC, siding, and starting electrical -  day 149 of our build.

Monday, June 15

hissy-fit number one...

This begins the part of the building process where our visits to the lot are more focused on little changes and "oh, that's different" instead of huge transformations and "wow -  there's a wall there!"  It's taking some getting used to.  At the moment, we're happy as long as we're seeing progress.

I have to confess... after the lackluster progress the week before last, and discussion of timelines with our banker -  this week prompted, the first of what I hope won't be many, "angry" emails to our Realtor.  I wouldn't call them angry really, just more.. impatient, concerned, and frustrated.  Thankfully she passed the sentiments on to our builder, and we saw an almost immediate change in the pace of work being done at our home.  For now.

Plumbing rough ins were finished up on Tuesday, June 9th.. except for a few lines missing for one of our appliances.  Here we see the framing for my beloved island (still a little wonky) but now we have bracing and pipes for the sink.

Siding is almost finished and the frame for our main floor deck is installed, as is most of the ceiling of the porch.

Hard to tell, but this looking up at the pipes for the master bath running through the basement ceiling joists.

Our tub is out of it's cardboard home and into a more permanent location.  So excited to have a jetted tub, even if the maintenance is going to be a pain!

Vents and pipes for the laundry room.. I can almost see my washer and dryer in place.  How lovely it will be to do laundry in my own laundry room once we move in! Although I appreciate the hospitality of both my mom and mother-in-law, offering me their washers and dryers.. there is just something about having your own again. 

Despite the dirty tub, it's fun to see the pretty ORB design of the handle and faucet.  It's a bit more feminine than Adam would prefer, but I love it!

And finally!  Our missing exterior doors are delivered!  One step closer to being "dried in".  Also, note the very exciting box of duct work pieces.. that means up next is HVAC, hopefully!

What a difference a hissy-fit makes.  
Plumbing and progress -  day 143 of our build.

Sunday, June 14

eeny meeny miney moe...

Choosing most of the finishes for our house wasn't as difficult as I expected it to be. I mentioned earlier that Eagle Imports did have a few suggestions pulled which helped me with my design indecision.

We had the choose the following during our appointment:
  • Main carpet color
  • Hardwood finish
  • Cabinet finish
  • Granite for bathrooms and kitchen
  • Tile for bathrooms
  • Tile for laundry room
  • Tile for Master bath
  • Backsplash for kitchen
  • Any other upgrades
I went in expecting that it would take a few trips to decide on everything.  By the time we left, about 30-45 minutes later, the only things that were uncertain were the granite for the kitchen and the backsplash (because it depended on the granite we chose.)  I was stunned that everything else was decided so quickly.
Love the accent tile we chose for the master bath -  can not WAIT to see that in place.

We still had to decide on the kitchen granite and backsplash, but these were our backsplash contenders:

Possibly a small square in the grey, or even subway tiles in this finish.

For a more dynamic look, a smaller subway structure but with these varied tiles.
That all depended on how our trip to the granite yard went... and it was a trip!

I thought I might add the names of our selections in case anyone has done like me and is trying to find where others have used their finishes.  Our selections are below:

  • Main carpet color - Port Harbor Wild Rice
  • Hardwood finish - River Ridge Birch Chatooga
  • Cabinet finish -  Walnut
  • Granite for bathrooms and kitchen -  New Caldonia (bath) Steel Grey (Kitchen)
  • Tile for bathrooms - Classico Poseidon with Cypress grout
  • Tile for laundry room -  Harmony Eucalyptus with Cypress grout
  • Tile for Master bath - Alaska Blackburn with Taupe grout and Bamboo Stone listello

Tuesday, June 9

desperately seeking siding..

There hasn't been much progress on the house over the last week.  It seems like the framers were finishing up and we were scheduled to begin rough-ins sometime between June 1st and June 5th.

For now, this is how we're feeling about the building process.
Slightly over it and completely tired of our "Studio" living.  However, let it be noted the lovely grey trellis pillows Loki is modeling here.  I hope to put these in the new house.. eventually. 

We didn't see any changes at the house, until June 3rd, when our tub and two of our shower/tub combos were delivered. The tub is in the big cardboard box hiding behind the shower.

Initially the framing for the kitchen island was set at bar height, and not counter like we specified.  This was corrected last week, but it's leaning a bit and not very secure.  This photo was taken to show our dissatisfaction.  Hopefully it will be fixed soon, as I plan to looove the kitchen island.

The island wasn't the only correction.  We found a correction tag instructing the workers to redo the window flashing.  Thank goodness that was caught before it was too late. 

On June 4th, we saw the soffits and fascia being added to the front of the house.   
 If you look closely, you can see where the fascia is added along the roof line, and where they started on the garage.

No other work was completed that week, but when we went by on Monday, June 8th -  we saw some of the siding was installed. 

I like the detail it adds to the gables.  It's hard to see that much has changed, but stopping by the lot every day makes those little changes easier to spot.

For now, I think the biggest challenge is not getting lost in the details or frustrated by the timeline.  We're so ready and excited to be in our new home.. and the work just seems to be dragging slowly by.  I hope we'll be able to see some of the rough-in's completed this week and see some more progress.

For now, I guess we'll continue to watch HGTV and dream about our home-to-be.

Soffits, siding, and showers -  Days 137 - 142 of our build.