We had a MAJOR snow storm right before Christmas, 2 1/2 feet! Look at all the snow behind the cute baby.

Cute Baby, Handsome Husband, LOTS of Snow

Pretty much the entire city shut down for 3 days. It took over a week before our street was plowed. Our new driveway is steep and windy and most definitely impassable. Tommy plowed it but even then the roads were icy for quite a while. I’m really not looking forward to driving during the winter.

Soooo, the schedule was pushed and we are now closing on January 7th! We’ve started packing and geez do we have a lot of stuff. Moving is definitely more difficult when there are babies involved, but at least this will be the last time we ever move. Yippie! So if you are in the area and are so inclined, we could use some help moving on January 9th for the small stuff and January 16th for the big stuff.

I’ve mentioned before how much we like our builder. Remember way back when they poured the concrete it wasn’t level in the center. Tommy went the extra mile and repoured the entire basement floor with some kind of extra smooth looking concrete. I don’t know the name of it but if you are interested I can find out.

And in other bonuses, the initial bid was for seeding and strawing of the yard (as required by code) only, no landscaping. We did this for two reasons, to save some money and because I’m not a huge fan of what most landscapers use for plants. I hate juniper bushes with the fire of a thousand suns (juniper trees are fine) and I hate climbing plants. We have both in our current house. The climbing plant is the worst. When I first moved in I got rid of all of it, yet each year it turns up again trying to get in between the siding. HATE! Well, as a Christmas present Tommy decided to throw in landscaping for free! We are floored and very grateful. To look a gift horse squarely in the mouth, I requested no juniper and no climbing or spreading plants. Tommy said no problem. I am so glad we choose him.

Enough talk, on to the picture.

First Floor starting from the right side of the house:

Laundry Room

Office, not large but adequate for our needs.

Pantry

I can’t remember if I mentioned this before but we were able to specify exact shelf heights. We also designed that blank space on the back wall to store our freezer chest. Customization at it’s finest!

Kitchen ... now with appliances!

Kitchen

One of the thoughtful touches that Tommy did was line up the shelves in the glass corner cabinet so that they are hidden by the grill in the window.

Breakfast Room

Great Room

Routed Mantel

The fireplace mantel is a beautiful piece of solid maple. They routed the top and bottom and are going to stain it to match the kitchen cabinets.

Dining Room

Downstairs Bathroom ... Ooooo fancy!

Playroom

Elegant Stairs

Front Door

Full View of Entry Way

Entry Way Light ... LOVE!

Back Deck. It looks huge.

Back Deck. This is more the actual scale.

Poured Front Porch

Front Walk Way

The light post to the right of the walk way there will eventually be painted black to match the light.

Car Port

One of the things that we planned to do ourselves later was build a detached garage connected to the house by a car port. When we met with Tommy to do the final grading, he said it would be more economical to grade the land and put down crush and run now rather than later since it would be at his cost. Now that it’s there one of the first things on our list to do is build the deck out to it so we can use the side entrance.

Whew that was a lot of picture … Annnnnnd … on to the second floor!

Master

Master Bedroom

I can’t get over how much I love the gray/blue color. It really highlights the creaminess of the stone. I’m so glad I have an interior designer friend or I probably would have chosen a more electric blue.

Master Sinks

HUGE shower. Small child placed for scale.

Master Tub

I also love the tub and may actually use it. We currently have one in our old (pre-owned) house. I have a thing about whirlpool tubs (and especially hot tubs) being a breeding ground for germs and mold and other people skin cells. I think about all yuck that get caught in the jets and get all icked out. This tub will still have skin cells in the jets but at least they will be OUR skin cells.

Our kids bathrooms will the themed. Oh yes they will! The one at the top of the stairs is the Monkey Bathroom. At some point in the future I want to add either some wall paper or a stencil.

Monkey Bathroom

The one at the end of the hall is the fish bathroom. I want to stencil in bubbles. Our house might be fancy but it will also be fun!

Fish Bathroom

Apparently I forgot to take pictures of the two kids bedrooms that we actually plan on using. Here are the ones that are going to be empty for a while.

Back Left Bedroom

Front Left Bedroom

And scene!

We had a MAJOR snow storm right before Christmas. Look at all the snow behind the cute baby.

We went to see the house this past weekend and they’ve finished the stone. It looks really good. I love the detail they gave to the windows and doors. The stone turned out darker than I expected but it’s really beautiful. They also finished the brick for the basement fireplace, all the tray ceilings and the window seat, plus all the showers are in place. The master tub was delivered and sitting in our kitchen. I wanted to get a picture of me in the tub in the kitchen but R thought it might damage the tub. He’s no fun. 🙂

Stone Facade Section

Stone Facade Section

Full House with Stone

Full House with Stone

Close Up of Overhead Window

Close Up of Overhead Window

Close up of Side Window

Close up of Side Window

Close up of Front Door (Solid Mahagony, sooooo pretty)

Close up of Front Door (Solid Mahagony, sooooo pretty)

Close up of stone over door

Close up of stone over door

Stone from side so you can see the variegated depths

Stone from side so you can see the variegated depths

Window Seat / Toy Box in Playroom

Window Seat / Toy Box in Playroom

Basement Fireplace

Basement Fireplace

First Floor Bathroom Shower

First Floor Bathroom Shower

Bathtub / Shower Unit (Same for both kids bathrooms)

Bathtub / Shower Unit (Same for both kids bathrooms)

Master Shower (R's hands are stretched as far as they can and notice he's not touching the walls!)

Master Shower (R's hands are stretched as far as they can and notice he's not touching the walls!)

Back of House with Deck Skeleton

Back of House with Deck Skeleton

Side of House with the door now installed

Side of House with the door now installed

Next week the shingles go on and the siding starts to go up. We haven’t decided on a siding color (OK, I haven’t decided on a siding color, R likes a really dark brown so we’ll see) that that’s our top priority along with the Master Shower accent tile. We also noticed that the deck band board doesn’t go all the way to the front of the house so we have to ask Tommy about that.

Something funny to note since we’re focusing on bathrooms, no bedroom is more than 5 steps away from a bathroom.

Another snag, this one our fault. We have cats and planned a whole cat area in the basement in which the cats would access it through a hole in the basement stair rise … BUT … we have fat cats and after looking at the rise of the stairs I’m afraid they won’t fit. We’ll have to do some thinking and see what we can come up with.

We met with Tommy on Monday to do the Framing Walk-Through. First some changes, then some snags, then some bonuses.

Chchchchanges:

Here’s a bunch of things we added since we signed the contract:

Initially, we were going to build the back deck on our own at a later date, but after pricing out what Tommy could do it for, we decided to just do it now. We saved a little money on a few things and the price Tommy quoted us was only a few hundred above what we could get the material for. We could build it ourselves for less, but our time is worth more than that. Plus we’re going to get a lot of use out of it, and we can take advantage of the gas drop for summer grilling.

We also added chimney toppers (which were muuuuch less expensive than I thought they’d be) to keep the squirrels and rain out.

We purchased floor boards and dry wall for the attic (using Tommy’s cost which is less than ours) so that we can finish it later. Not only is Tommy going to move all that stuff up to the attic for us (which will save our backs), but he installed the attic floor for us at no charge! We love no charge. 🙂

Snags:

This one isn’t even a real snag but I wasn’t sure where to put it. When we decided to make the attic finishable, we were going to do it at a later date and buy a heating unit just for that space. Then Tommy suggested we condition the attic now instead of later so we said sure. We thought we’d be able to piggy back off the geo-thermal unit, but unfortunately it wasn’t sized to include the attic. Kind of a bummer since we got excited about it, but having an extra unit was the initial plan so we’re just back to square one. We are still going to have a few vents from the geo-thermal system up there to semi-condition it but they won’t handle the heat of the summer or the chill of the winter, the vents will just take the edge off.

Another not so much snag as change. The foyer closet is going to have a plant shelf on top. The height of the closet will be cut down to match the bottom of the stair height. Initially we designed a larger closer but we’re going to have to make it smaller so that the top of the closet isn’t above the stairs. Not really a big deal since we have another closet in the kitchen for storing stuff like vacuums.

One other not so much snag as something that’s not ideal. The intake vent will be located in the dining room semi-interfering with the wall panel trim. We talked with Tommy and the heating/cooling person during the walk through to see if we could come up with a better solution but determined it had to be there. At first we thought maybe they could raise it but they couldn’t because it’s suppose to be in the bottom of the wall to draw in the (hot or cold, I can’t remember which) air. Then we thought we could maybe move it to the kitchen wall but we couldn’t because the box is super large so it would jut out, plus the wall is load bearing so it would be tricky, plus it would require elbows which restrict air flow and whistle, plus it would screw up the basement ceilings making them super short to accommodate the tubes. So it’s going to stay put but they’ll do their best to hide it.

Bonuses:

As I said before, Tommy installed the attic floor for us for free. He also upgraded our stair railings from wood to metal for free. We’re also getting larger wood floor planks, 3″ instead of 2.25″ which is standard, for free.

Next to the attic stairs there is a little area that we could use for storage. Tommy is going to put a door there for us … for free.

Stairs to the Attic

Stairs to the Attic

In both the dining room and master bedroom we’ll have a tray ceiling. Normally the tray ceiling is square but we asked for and got a octagonal shape. It will look similar to this but I don’t think we’ll have trim inside the tray, just below it:

Tray Ceiling

Tray Ceiling

And last but not least (most in fact), Tommy is going to build a toy box / window seat for us. This was something we were planning on doing later anyway but since Tommy is going to do it, that means we can have an electrical outlet on the front of the box. He’s going to put an electrical outlet below all the windows to make it easy for us to have candles in the windows at Christmas time.

During the walk through, we pointed out a few of the places we’d like outlets. The kitchen and bathroom counters were all drawn out on the floor so we could see where everything goes which was nice. So far everything is looking really good!