Building Up a Wall

Happy belated Mother’s Day to all the wonderful mothers out there! We had a really great Mother’s Day. We got to spend Sunday evening with some of the closest’s mothers in our lives. Mother’s Day this year was at our house. The guys did most of the work… which meant that they cooked for us. We had a Mother’s Day BBQ… the first bbq of the season!  Woohoo!! The weather was great and everything was delicious! I wish I took a picture of the spread! The best part of the day was spending time with the family. I hope everyone enjoyed it!!

This weekend we (actually Jimmy) completed another “to do” for the house. The front of our house is pretty ugly. The first thing you notice when walking up the stairs to the door is this:

20120511_200507

Isn’t it scary? We think it is pretty scary looking. It’s probably one of the first things anyone notices! It was screaming for a MAJOR makeover! Jimmy’s parents pretty much asked us everyday when we were going to fix it. So this weekend was the weekend for that makeover.

We contemplated what would be the best way to fix this hideous entryway. We thought we would be able to powerwash all the paint of and then repaint it. 

Most of the homes in the neighborhood  have siding. This was an idea we really liked. I tried to convince Jimmy to put up siding and have it painted black(I have an tiny obession with black, we can talk about that later.) Jimmy decided to look around for some other ideas and came across some brick tiles he liked. And like a good husband, he gave me the final say on what would be done.

We went to a few places and Jimmy showed me what he found. I really liked his choice of style bricks, but not the color. So I told him to go a lot lighter color than he had planned. He ended up finding the perfect brick tiles! He placed the order Friday morning and picked up the tiles after work. Now that was fast!!

Jimmy started working on some of the prep work Friday evening. He took the numbers and trim. Then after I came home, we put up the cement board. Here is a picture with the cement board in place:

20120512_084236

Then we called it quits. Since it was too dark to work. We decidedto finish up the work Saturday. We got up bright and early to start the work. The weather wasn’t the best Saturday. It was cold, dreary, and drizzling here and there. Jimmy started to place the tiles to get an idea of how it would look and what he would need to cut.

Here is the wall halfway done:

20120512_103652

After Jimmy tiled the bottom half of the wall things got a little tricky, because of the siding. Jimmy would end up cutting some of the tiles that didn’t fit  and then start putting in random pieces to fill in any gaps. This brick tile was pretty forgiving. The bricks are pretty randomly spaced and sized. Of course this is where I come to the nit pick about where he would need to fill in.

As we got closer to the top we started to realize that we might not have enough tiles to finish the project. Jimmy had to be very wise about using the tile sparingly. Closer to the top of the wall we had make a hole in the cement board for the lighting. Jimmy cut the tile and tiled around the hole perfectly. Here is what it looked like:

20120512_120246

The hardest part of the wall was completed and this is what the wall looked like after it was completely covered in brick tile:

20120512_132106

Here is what Jimmy looked like after he was done:

20120512_123714

His mom got a kick out of how “white” he looked. I think it was time for him to hit the shower and relax a bit. Later that day Jimmy installed the light. He is the final picture of our new brick wall:

20120513_154722

What do you guys think? Was it worth the effort? Should we have done something different? Is there anything else we should do this wall or the front of house?? 

Post a comment below and let us know what you think! We love hear from all of you! 

 

 

Advertisements

Kitchen Reveal

I can’t believe it…. I didn’t wait another month to put up a post. It has been a week since the last post. Pinch me I think I am dreaming.

Since the last week a few things have changed in our lives. We actually moved out of my parent’s home and into our own. We did leave quite a bit of things at my parent’s, but hopefully we will be able to get that all into our own house. If I don’t, I will be getting a call from my mom asking me why I still have things at their house.

I don’t know if you read the last weeks post, if not your can read it here. The kitchen remodel is pretty much done. It seems like it has been forever since we started. Here is a picture of where we were last week:

IMG_0360

(Before I go any further I just want you to know that all the pictures in this post were taken with my phone. Sorry that if the quality stinks.)

Back when we saw this house for the first time in February, I felt the kitchen lacked a lot of countertop space. So the first thing that came out of my mouth was that I wanted to put the sink where the window was. Of course everyone thought I was crazy. Maybe I am, but this is just something I wanted to do. Since no one really agreed with me we just moved on to looking at the rest of the house.

Jimmy’s parents loved the house after we were done taking the tour. His dad said, “This is the house no matter what!”  We all loved it. We knew it needed a lot of work, especially the kitchen. We did not want to move into the house without remodeling the kitchen. 

After we put the offer on the house we started to plan out what were going to do with the kitchen. Jimmy and I started to sketch-out ideas for the kitchen. Of course I was all for the idea about putting the sink in front of the window. Jimmy wanted to put an island instead. But eventually we agreed the “my idea” was the best.

In order to put the sink in front of the window, we had to change on the window. This was one of the reason why we were debating on what the new design would be. If we went with the island we could leave the window. My idea of course would cost more. I can’t help that I have expensive taste.  Here is a picture of the wall with the window removed:

20120403_122241

Sorry I couldn’t get a better picture of the window. Here what the new window looks like:

20120403_192354

What do you think about the new window? I think it turned out pretty nice. Now I get to look out the window while I am doing the dishes. I can also see what the kids are doing in the backyard while I am in the kitchen. Then catch them off guard a few times when they are doing something they shouldn’t  be doing.

We search high and low for cabinets. We went everywhere possible to find something we really liked. We went to Home Depot, Menards and Ikea looking for cabinets. Surprisingly, Ikea has some great cabinets. We ended going with someone Jimmy knows. He just started to make his own cabinets. The minute we saw the cabinets we fell in love with them. Here is a picture of the kitchen with all the cabinets installed:

20120403_192912

Now it looks like something has actually been done to the kitchen. Once the kitchen was in place we called a couple of countertop installers to get quotes. Jimmy and I made up our minds on what kind of countertops we wanted installed even before we started remodeling. It was pretty much a no brainer for us. We both loved Marble countertops, but it’s not very practical if you are actually using the kitchen to cook. Especially if you are Indian and cook Indian food.  So the next best thing for us was Quartz. . There were still choices to be made. When we went to Home Depot, Lowes, Menards, and Ikea they had about 3 options of white.

We both ended up liking the same countertop style. The guy we hired did a great job. They even came and installed it a day early.

20120411_191852

Jimmy and I also decided on the back splash pretty early on. We first wanted to order the same back splash my parents had installed in their kitchen. Of course it was something that we picked out for them. But instead we decided to shop around and see what was available. We searched everywhere for these as well. We decided to use square glass tiles but decided that it was too dull. We ended up finding these penny tiles instead:

20120416_215557

They were a pain to put in but well worth the blood, sweat, tears, and arguments!  Here is a close look at the back splash after it was grouted:

20120503_232353

Here is a picture of the whole kitchen completely renovated!

20120503_232212

We are really happy at the way it turned out. I don’t think we would change anything…. EXCEPT…. just kidding. Nothing. We won’t change a thing!

Please let us know what you guys think. Is there something you would have done differently? We would love to hear your opinions.

UPDATE

*My sister requested that I put up a before and after picture. She is so smart!  Your wish is my command…

Before

IMG_0262

After

20120503_232212