It’s been 1 year since we bought this house.
Yep, I know.
One. Whole. Year. (+ 1 day because I waited until this morning to finish this post. 😊 )
I decided to hold off on the 1-year comparison post until after the holidays. I know, I know. It’s not exactly a see what a year can make difference post if I wait … but we’re seriously RIGHT at the END of one really big renovation, and a multitude of small renovations. And, well, since MOST of the hard work has already been completed in the true sense of its-been-1-year-since-we-bought-this-house time-frame, I want to include those too. Also, everything is decorated for the holidays now, and the side-by-side comparisons just don’t work as well when the pics are cluttered up with all those pretty decorations. It’ll be in truer form if I just wait a few weeks.
BUT, I will throw in this sneak-peak of our upstairs main bathroom renovation. I found it very fitting that I actually *almost-completely* finished another MAJOR room renovation yesterday – on our 1-year anniversary. I’ve been working on this room for basically the entire year now – off & on – and to say that it has been troublesome is an understatement, from the toilet paper holder to the mirrors to the built-in shelving, let’s just say, it’s had issues. But, it’s finally SO CLOSE to being finished, that I’m going to post this picture here today (mostly to document that it’s actually that close to being finished!). I really, honestly, just need to buy some new towels and rugs, and install the already-purchased ceiling light/fan combo in the shower area (which we basically can’t do until the weekend because it’s too dark by 5pm to see anything in that room!). But, otherwise, it is literally finished. Like the actual renovation is finished. And, we’re super happy with it!
However, cleaning up the office, which has been my equipment staging ground for these upstairs renovation projects and has quickly gotten out of control, is going to have to be done in the next week, for sure!
Otherwise, I’m just back with some more happy little details we’ve been finishing …
I switched out the 2 exterior door hinge sets. I did not switch out the one the garage. On the front and back doors, the hinges face inside and used to be a very goldy-brass to match the old door levers. Changing these out made a big difference! They were the last of the old, main level hardware to replace … (I think, I keep finding these little details that I missed or forgot about … it might go on forever?). I did not switch out the hinges on the door to the garage. I bought replacements, and we may eventually replace them … but the current hinges have a closing mechanism on them. The door automatically swings shut & we don’t have to remember to pull it shut. It was a HUGE pain when we were renovating and moving … but now that the house is more just a lived-in house, we’ve become used to them and they are kind-of nice to have installed. (Plus, they face into the garage, so you cannot see them from the interior of the house, and they aren’t quite that matchy, horrible, brass-gold like the rest of them are …)
I finally took some time and worked on a solution for our switch plate cover on the patio electrical switches! We bought the snap-together kind at first (back in July), and returned those. I tried to find & order a cover that would match. I looked at a whole bunch of different switch combination plates – none matched. So, we finally went back and bought the snap-together ones. We were thinking that we originally returned them because they just didn’t look the best … turns out that we returned them because they actually didn’t work there. Moving on. I have a box of light and electrical covers, etc. that we’ve accumulated, and went digging in there to see if we had anything I could use. And, well, I’m not sure why we didn’t just do this to begin with, because it just now seems like such an easy solution … but, we had the plate for the fan control switch and a 4-toggle switch plate that was initially meant to be installed there. So, I just traced the outline of the fan control plate hole onto where the 4th toggle-switch hole was and then carefully cut that out. It worked great. And, now we FINALLY have a plate cover over that box. FINALLY!
(In case you’re wondering … the snap together ones have vertical ridges in-between each plate where they snap together, and we didn’t have any space in-between these switches, so the plates don’t sit flush with the wall and actually pop-off the wall and just aren’t really secure in any way. We have used the snap-together plates in other places and they have worked fine – it’s just the way these patio switches are positioned.)
Good news and bad news on this next one … I finally got around to replacing our doorbell. I originally just wanted a new cover for the current doorbell. No reason to mess with something that’s working, right. But, after looking a lot, they don’t just sell replacement covers – which I find incredibly weird? I mean, I found some $50+ decorative covers, but I just wanted a white plastic cover to replace the almond-colored one that was originally up there. (That one got lost, otherwise, I’d have just painted it.)
Anyway, a new doorbell with a white plastic cover was only $20; I figured, fine, I’ll just replace the whole thing. Replacing the actual door chime, that was a breeze. It’s installed and looks so much better in the foyer – just blends right in, don’t even notice it. The actual outside doorbell push-button? Well, when I went to install the diode inside the push-button – the wire from the house to the button just broke. It was so brittle, it just snapped in half when I loosened the screw. And, it’s so short now that you literally cannot attach it to anything. So, you fix one problem, and now we’ve got another – more expensive – problem.
The second wire in the pushbutton had already been extended via and additional wire and electrical tape, and now I guess we could do that again to this other wire … but we’re not really if it works, it’s fixed-type of people. Especially electrical. And especially in this aluminum-wired house of ours. So … my doorbell replacement went from a $20 fix to a now we have to hire an electrician to come out and run new wiring to the doorbell pushbutton. And, I have to somehow keep the diode piece from getting lost or broken for the next weeks or months!?!? UGH. But, I’m still happy about the interior look of the white plastic cover, so I don’t really mind the doorbell not working or having to get someone out here to fix it … is that weird?
We received our new LR end tables and TV stand, and the last piece of art for that room. The end tables are amazing. The assembly was so easy, and the quality is better than we were even hoping for. We really like them. The TV stand, well, it’s a lighter color than advertised, and it took FOREVER to assemble … but now that it’s finished, and placed where it goes, it’ll work. For the price, it is exactly what we needed and close to what we were looking for … and it’s got LEDs on the glass shelves, which Patrick is pretty excited about. (And, I have to admit, the look better than I anticipated … I was just going to not install them. 😊 )
So, we’re really close to a completely finished living room … still need to install the TV mount (see it just sitting on the floor in the pics), and then buy a new chair and a new ottoman. But, it already feels so much more like a home living room than it did before … all these details definitely make a difference how it feels to be in the house now … in a good way.
AND … this one is exciting! … we finally pushed our bed back against the wall in our master bedroom. We have SO MUCH SPACE! Also, since we got new LR end tables, we switched the old LR tables up to a guest bedroom and took back our old nightstands, which totally still work in our new room. We bought new knobs for them because the old knobs did not still work, but that was an easy fix (and keeps me from having to go actual furniture shopping again). And, this room is coming together too … still need a piece of trim around the room (cut, caulked, and painted), but that’s about it for the renovation work in there. I already bought 2 lamps for either side of the bed, and we have the art for the walls, just need to hang it (which we might do sooner than later … it’s easy to take down to install the trim, right?).
And, so I’m still working on things like, hanging art around the house, hemming the patio curtains, installing a couple of lights around the house, fixing a couple pieces of trim, caulking in the kitchen (counters & touch-up), and the list goes on. But, this is the kind of stuff we’ll be finishing up over the next few weeks, and the kind of things included in our 1-year update, that may have been actually finished in the 1-year, plus a few weeks’ time-frame … nothing major. 😉
One more thing … not renovation related … we had so many deer in our yard last week. There were 6 of them, and none of them even moved when I went outside to plug the lights in or take pictures or even when Patrick came home! Last week we also saw a good size buck running around the neighborhood. 😲 It’s kind of cool … but also, kind of not cool.