Making a HUD a Home

The story of what happens when a girl with zero renovation experience buys a house with zero cabinets.

Oh hell

I’m drinking on my patio and realized I never posted photos of grass and revised steps and the like.

Assume that means I’ve been enjoying the updates.

Cheers!

So, we’ve been trying to slowly finish/fix the lanscaping situation. 

Last Friday, they installed the steps from back yard to side yard. We hated them. There is a weird gap of crushed breeze we didn’t expect, one of the steps was super narrow (i.e., I DEFINITELY would trip/stub toes/break kneecaps) which you can’t see. They just look/feel completely unfinished, so we inquired. Welp. The “solution” is not great but will essentially pull out the top row only to push back to meet the original wall/step, and essentially give 2 “landing” deeper steps and widen out the really narrow one. So the breeze will be gone/minimized from what you see here but the rest will still look unfinished. We will have to figure something out ourselves, I guess… :/

The patio got poured Saturday, reeeeeally early. But it’s done! I can’t say I love or hate it. We flattened out the curve of it when the trench stole a ton of yard space. Supposed to have been kidney-ish, but now it’s a weird dumpy butt shape. Whatever. It’s done. To the left, you see the walkway that goes from the driveway out front, around the side of the house, meeting the patio. We’ve moved the grill out and patio furniture (such as it is, being the apartment balcony stuff) will go out tonight.

Sod delivers Saturday, so we are hiking on the 4th before killing ourselves in the heat/sun. Happy times.

Nope. It’s drainage. Or so they are now convinced because they surveyed on the heels of a 500 year storm. So he won’t plant in it and there’s the berm behind which will get planted but god only knows how anything (mulch/rock/whatever) will stick to the side of that.

Landscaper also fighting not doing a border on the interior side fence too. I appreciate his desire for water conservation and ease of care, but if those things are minimal AND don’t fit my lifestyle, I’m not doing them.

I’m just accepting it’s the nail in the coffin for me and this house.

Nope. It’s drainage. Or so they are now convinced because they surveyed on the heels of a 500 year storm. So he won’t plant in it and there’s the berm behind which will get planted but god only knows how anything (mulch/rock/whatever) will stick to the side of that.

Landscaper also fighting not doing a border on the interior side fence too. I appreciate his desire for water conservation and ease of care, but if those things are minimal AND don’t fit my lifestyle, I’m not doing them.

I’m just accepting it’s the nail in the coffin for me and this house.

So this is the backyard I can’t do anything about. The closest “border” to the house is the patio form. The next border you see is the edging up to the giant trench that used to live there. The space in between is what will be grass in my backyard. Clearly the perfect and optimal amount of room for 2 80 plus pound dogs.

I am fighting tears once again.

So this is the backyard I can’t do anything about. The closest “border” to the house is the patio form. The next border you see is the edging up to the giant trench that used to live there. The space in between is what will be grass in my backyard. Clearly the perfect and optimal amount of room for 2 80 plus pound dogs.

I am fighting tears once again.

Landscaping

So, a month behind schedule, the landscaper came out today. Basically to mark off the patio and utilities so they can start soon.

It sucks. We lost a good portion of our backyard because of a “drainage problem” that hadn’t really been a problem the first 40 years the house existed but now created a fat trench across our property.

At this point, per the original plan that has been completely jacked, there’s almost no grass for the dogs, which was the whole point of buying a house that needed SO MUCH WORK but was on a big corner lot.

Dude and I don’t agree on the potential alternative solution, which makes it even harder. We can’t really compromise on the backyard, since neither of us can change the trench. But I want the side yard to at least be as grassy as possible. He still prefers some perimeter inside the fence that takes away a bunch of yard.

The house itself, I can and have gotten over most issues. The yard being terribly screwed by overly cautious surveyors/landscapers who managed to survey during a 500 year flood and declare a need for this ridiculous ditch is absolutely killing any chance I had to enjoy it here, though.

Well okay

As of Friday, I find myself to soon be unemployed. Working on making that not true just as soon as I can, but that’s the reality for the near term.

So, guess I have time to work on house stuff! On deck for today/tomorrow:

  • Putty nail holes and sand mantel
  • Start staining mantel (was going to use the floor stain but think I’ll SPLURGE on a new can since I don’t know if there’s enough)
  • Touch up kitchen paint along corner bead (that is HARD to make look right for an OCD girl!)
  • Cut the grass
  • Clean clean clean clean

Going to try and get the master bedroom ceiling fan installation on Dude’s list this week since it’s going to be in the 80s after this cool snap ends. Means him going into the attic to change the fixture box and then the fun of the actual install. 

All this may or may not change if a) Work decides they have other random tasks and don’t want me done this week, which I cannot imagine or b) this cold that hit yesterday afternoon/overnight get worse.

Fun!

About to get cranky

There are a few things that need to happen this weekend or I will be super duper irritated.

  • Last two tiny pieces of trim to finish backsplash (you can’t even see they are missing but it’s a 2 minute job)
  • Caulking same backsplash
  • Finishing dumb dishwasher drain move required by inspectors
  • Making new house number sign
  • Staining mantel (or at least playing with stain to decide color)
  • Same for pantry door
  • Install drain pull on master sink
  • Hang robe hook in bathroom

All of these are easy enough. I am the sign/stain/hook person. All need doing before I lose my gourd that we haven’t done them. I did my touch up painting this week already, time for little finishing things to get finished.

I haven’t updated in a while.

New porch and walkway, new porch light, new storm door, as of today, new fence!

Have wood and numbers for a new house number sign but have lazied too many days to have that done, too.

Woot.

When you can’t/don’t want to spend money on built ins, bookcases work nicely.

A week in review

There were no fights, a few short tempers and some solutions underway.

  • The fence and landscaping guys were both out Friday. Revised quote from one, keeping last spring’s quote from the other
  • After $$ juggling and some WTFing, we will be proceeding with both the full phase 2 of the landscaping (leveling back yard to current trench/ditch, weed removal and sod prep, rock pathway from driveway/side of house to backyard, raised cement patio, edging to prep for planting) and a full privacy fence
  • The fence caused most of the tempers. A sort of planned but unexpected check from some loan or something of Dude’s made me not have to armwrestle on this one
  • Fence guy coming in a couple of weeks, landscaping guy not until May. Ugh
  • Bought straw to put in the backyard to curb mud yard. Alas, now we track in straw vs mud. Win some lose some
  • Got bookcases for the family room and dug out some photos and candles to put on them
  • Got and installed the roman shade in the kitchen, which looks good!