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We have drywall and tile

Here are a few before and after pictures with the drywall and tile installed. Wood-look tile is everywhere right now but I’m okay with joining the bandwagon. It’s one of the more realistic looking styles I’ve seen, and I’m a big fan of the 4 ft length. I had wanted to use this project to improve my tile skills, but it became unrealistic at 7 months pregnant. We did find a fantastic guy to set the tile, who was meticulous about mixing up the patterns and perfectly leveling each one, so I’m very happy with the results.

I didn’t really like the idea of having a master closet in a bathroom for moisture reasons, but moving the wall was a bit more of a financial commitment than I was willing to make for this house.

The Hardiebacker has also been installed for the shower walls. We added two recessed niches for storing soaps so we wouldn’t need any type of hanging organizer.

Next stop, drywall taping and texture.

Freeing an apricot tree

The dilapidated deck was one of two remaining dilapidated structures in the yard that we needed to demo. The most flimsy pieces of it were throw away over the past year(s) but the majority of the structure remained. A rat / black widow / rusty nail haven. With an exploring gsd, it had to go.


The apricot tree is happy to be freed. A front section of fence is the remaining dilapidated thing to demo, and it is also the last remaining maroon-painted thing I have to look at daily.

Open space

Our main living space has been mostly open since we took out a wall our first week living here, with the exception of this hanging cabinet blocking views into the kitchen. In a brief moment of insanity, I decided it was well worth the loss in cabinet storage to never have to look at it there again. And so…

Now I have a big spot to paint on the ceiling. Worth it.

Eight Months Later

Well, 8 months have already passed since we began our massive home renovation project. I’ve slacked on the picture posting. We’ve been doing lots of work outside lately.

The exterior paint is almost finished, and we have an A/C unit for the first time in years! A shed has been painted and built, and a pathway is in the works. The concrete surrounding the house has all been demo’ed and is being replaced with tiny stones and pavers. And slowly, but surely, the grass grows.

The house before and currently:

There’s still quite a bit of work to do in this area, including the replacement of a dilapidated fence, some painting, and removal of much more broken concrete.

We tore down the non-permitted covered patio and repaired the roof where it was attached to the house. Also fixed a broken window and got rid of the weird bean-shaped pond.

It’s amazing how terrible the roof and the pink paint looked in comparison to the new version.The brick patio is not in great condition but that is a project for many years down the road.

We removed lots of the weird fencing and are sill working on clearing out the tons (literal) of trash left in the yard. There are a few more structures that need to be torn down and a lot of yardwork to complete. The roof and paint make a world of difference.

This part of the yard has seen a lot of toil lately. With the removal of hundreds of pieces of rotten wood, the fridge, trampoline pieces, concrete block, and plants, it is starting to shape up. The fence is slowly being torn down and replaced to capture more of the lot. This fall also saw the construction of the chicken run and coop.

A lot of fences to tear down and many fences to build, but we have already recaptured so much space with all of the trash gone.

Who could miss this front door? Until budget allows it to be replaced, it was painted to match the rest of the exterior. Slowly, it improves.

Although the paint cleaned up the entrance, we still have the task of replacing the light and doorbell, and hiding the sprinkler controls. Also, probably time to take that wreath down…

Grading Complete

Another thing to check off the massive to-do list.

This spring, when I performing a second walk-thru, I took a lot of pictures of the current state of the place. The fridge, piles of wood, fencing, ladder, and parts of that trampoline didn’t leave when the family finally moved out. So I can call this an accurate “before” picture.

Two 40 cu. yd. dumpsters, three trips to the dump, and months of cleaning, clearing, and demolition left us with one uneven yard that sloped toward the house. After grading, rototilling, and smoothing out, it is finally cleared. It may not be close to finished but I’m excited to build garden boxes, put the chicken coop out, and build a new fence. That, or we have a really solid lawnmower racetrack area. On to the next thing.