Thursday, April 29, 2010

Busy, Busy

There has been so much happening with work and personal events that we've had no time to update this site for over a week. The neighborhood house tour was last Sunday and we've both been on the road for a couple days this week. Carrie's been in Maryland trying on army boots (ask her about that) and I visited a scout facility in Cincinnati and made a side trip to Lexington (KY) to see how the UK campus had changed in the 20 years since last there. The Kentucky Horse Park was fun too.

Being away for a few days, it's easy to see what has changed on the inside of the house. The contractors spent a lot of time last week cleaning up in preparation of the neighborhood tour of our street this past Sunday. The event was attended by 350+ people - twice as many as in previous years. Much of this response was due to the variety and quality of houses on our street. The theme was "Homes With a View"; all of the featured houses had a long view of the river and had been updated in recent years.

I also think there was curiosity among neighborhood folks to see the inside of our house. This event provided the chance to satisfy that curiosity. What they saw probably surprised a few of them who had seen the house before our renovation. Though not finished yet, the space is open and bright - now very easy to imagine how things will look. Since we didn't stay in the house as people walked through, I created a takeaway-flyer with details of the house.

This week our project is seeing more interior painting, electrical work, and the completion of tile work. The bright-white trim paint is starting to pop out next to the off-white wall color. We may add some more color after we move in and see how the furniture does, but with the exception of the upstairs bedroom we're leaving most of the house painted off-white.

Carrie said she saw lights on in the house when she drove by at 8 PM this week so that means the painting is now far enough along for the electrician to install lights. This should add a little sparkle to the inside as many fixtures are metallic objects within the space and others are recessed in the ceilings. Both will add some drama and movement to the walls and ceilings.

The tile installers ran into a mis-match with the stone tile in the downstairs bath. They had almost finished the entire thing but found that later shipments of the stone varied slightly than what was already installed. Some of this variation is acceptable. However, the tile installers thought this new batch was too different and would stand out. To make it look right, they pulled out the entire shower wall area and re-laid it with newer material. I didn't have to say a thing - they just did what they thought would best represent their work.

As stated in a previous essay, some variation (Architects say "character") is expected with all natural materials. As stone is extracted from a quarry, the look will change slightly as they mine deeper or from side-to-side. The designer and owner just have to judge how much character is acceptable.

Installations coming soon are the garage door, lighting, and plumbing fixtures. Also, the floors will be sanded then stained to a reddish-brown color. That will really make things look finished. We're both excited with the progress and realize it won't be too much longer now.


  1. Looking better all the time Mark! 350 People is a lot of neighbors, too. Was there any charge for some organization to take the tour? They have some like that here for the Symphony Society or similar things.
    Frank Lloyd Wright was mentioned.....I can see his influence in your designs on the renovation. Don't remember a curved place anywhere in the house, like Wright seemed to do, even on furniture! Wish we could have been part of the crowd. Any way you get any comments from the visitors?

  2. The neighborhood association has a group of houses open for touring each year. The tickets are $12.50 per person and available only to neighbors and their guests. They raised about $4000 this one day.