Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Gold Manor Update #2

We are in the middle of a 32 day renovation.  Kelly and Jon put together an aggressive schedule and we are all doing our part.  "All" includes the subcontractors, Kelly, Jon, Pam and me.

This has been one of the (if not THE) most fun projects we have been a part of the last few years.  So far no major glitches and we are learning a lot.

Here are a few before and 'in-progress' photos:

First the kitchen.  This is looking from the door into the garage.
Here is a look from the hallway.
Here's what it looked like after they removed the counter, sink, shelves, dishwasher and oven.
Those rooms look a lot bigger when they are empty.

The photo below shows the wall separating the kitchen and the living room.  The stove and some cabinets had already been removed. It took the workers a couple of hours to do this.  The foreman loved swinging that sledgehammer to demolish the old stuff.  We had already removed handles, latches, hooks and any other pieces Kelly wanted to keep.
It was looking cleaner hour by hour.

If you look closely in the living room to the right of the light, you can see where the contractor had marked where the wall was going to be removed in the living room.  Kelly walked around with him a few days prior to that and they measured off and marked what walls needed to stay and which ones were to be modified.

Some people like Kelly and Jon can walk into a place and see the potential of big changes.  They can envision walls coming down and opening up the combined area.  They did that in their current house and decided this place was another good candidate.
Looking from the front living room back to the kitchen.

The next day they took out the studs to complete the wall removal.
This doorway and the one next to it are both going to be removed and opened up into the hallway to give the area a more spacious look.
It worked.  I asked Kelly if she had seen this done in her graduate studies for her Interior Design work and she said, "No, some people are good at math, this is just how my brain works.  I see things like this."
This is what the debris looked like piled up on the porch.  It easy to throw it out the window and cart it off to the dumpster.
Here is a look at the bar that was taken out.

Instead of a bar, they decided to build a half bath and a pantry next to the place of what will become their dining area and den.  They took off the brass railing and footrest.  Kelly applied some Norwex cloth elbow grease just to see if the foot rest would shine up. 
It did!  So that will likely find a place after their rehab is done.
The empty area looked like this before they started building it out.
The photo below shows the project well underway.
Another room that was 'demoed' was the Master Bathroom.  Pam removed the cabinet doors below the shelving and the whole vanity came out.

The shower doors and frame were removed as well as the vanity and mirror.
Once removed, the flooring was now exposed and had to be filled in.  Also the space near the tile cup holders on the wall had to be filled in.
It took a while to piece in the area under the vanity but it turned out fine.

That's a quick snapshot of what some of the areas that were removed and readied for renovation.  A lot of activity was going on with more to follow!

Thanks of joining us for Gold Manor Update #2 on the Roadrunner Chronicles!

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Busy at Gold Manor

Kelly and Jon sold their current home and are renting it back for a month.  That allows them to get some things done on their new home.  Move in date is a few weeks away.

"Some things done" is codeword for 'major renovations'.

Once a contract was in hand, they marshaled all their home building/construction, general contractor, property management and interior design skills to bear.  They put together a plan, a schedule, lined up the resources and materials and developed a critical path which began the day after closing.

Move in date was about four weeks away from closing.

The former owner on the Gold Manor allowed Jon and I to work on the yard before the close of the sale.  That enabled us to get a jump on clearing some shrubs, underbrush, ivy, and unwanted overgrowth.
We got with it and started reclaiming the flower beds along the front of the house.  It was no small task.  We used a chain saw to hack the shrubs back and to remove the overgrowth.  Along the side of the house, I cut back the shrubs to uncover an access way to see what we had in that area.

It was a classic case of a neglected yard which had been left in a sad state for years and years.

After a few hours making a dent on the front of the house, we spent a couple more hours on the back yard.  Jon saw some steps from the sun room in the back when he opened the door.  As we dug the 8" of vines, needs and leaves away, we found more brick work on a walkway.
As we continued to dig up the leaves and needles, we found some bricks on a pathway.  In fact the pathway went from the back of the sun room to the lake.  And another path crossed the yard and went around to the back of the boat house.  We found another 40' of brick walkway. We were stunned!

The more we cut and cleared away, the more brickwork we found.  Now only if we had an unlimited amount of energy!
After we gathered up our first batch of debris, we piled it into the dumpster and filled it up.  We completed a good days work with more to follow.

After that weekend, I went back over to the house and 'worked out' about an hour at a time.  I used a pick and shovel to loosen up the pea gravel driveway to fill in some pot holes.
 It was not the quickest way to get the job done and I had only done about 1/3 of the length of the driveway.  But it is progress.  When I started there was no concrete border visible.  Again, little by little we are getting the job done.

The next weekend Jon used the weedwacker and edger to uncover more of the yard.  I spent a couple of days going back over it to see what we were working with.  Also, I continued on the driveway working an hour here and there.
 After a number of days at it, I had completed about 40'-50' of the driveway that is over 125' long. My first priority was getting rid of the large potholes by loosening up the gravel in the middle and spreading it out over the low areas.
With shrubs and big piles of yard waste, it was a beautiful thing to see the first dumpster come and go.
That's a of many updates on what has become one of our most favorite 'volunteer' work efforts over the years.  There is a lot to do here and there are half a dozen sub contractors scheduled to come and go over the next few weeks to get the Gold Manor to 'move-in-ready'.

Thanks for joining us on the Roadrunner Chronicles!