Sunday, February 26, 2012


Happy Third House-aversary, house!

(This is our house in 2005, when the owners kept the hedges trimmed, before there was an oak in the front yard and back when the windows were drafty)

Hard to believe that last year at this time, poor Hubs and I were eating our weight in Jimmy John's and cursing the invention of drywall mudding while we fixed up the once finished, then wet, then gutted basement. And here we stand today, with a finished basement, nicely painted walls in all but two rooms, a snuggly insulated attic and of course - the deck and patio of our dreams.

It's been a busy three years.

In our third year together, house, we have some baby-step style projects:

  • Fix the slanted front walk (ok, rip it up completely and replace it with a curved paver walk to match the patio out back)
    • Anticipated project date: May-June 2012 (as in, we don't know when we will start - not as in, we expect this to take two months)
    • Anticipated cost: $750 or less
  • Finally! De-linoleum-ize your poor kitchen floor. That one has been a long time coming. Get ready for some fancy pants new ceramic tile (ok, fancy-pants is a relative term. We're looking to do the whole floor gig for under $500, so it will be the cheapest Menard's has to offer, but still better than 30 year old lino).
    • Anticipated project date: November 2012 - got to get ready to host our very first Christmas in this humble home!
    • Anticipated cost: $500, plus Jimmy Johns
  • Smack some style into the bathroom. Oh, how this room has been neglected. Ugly tile everywhere, bad paint, a sorry excuse for a vanity, and an original toilet. Again, this project is one we're shooting to keep cheap cheap cheap (and fast fast fast since it's our only bathroom!).
    • Anticipated project date: December 2012. Yep, as soon as the family is out the door after the holidays, the remainder of our week off will be spent fixin' up the head and showering at the gym. Yee haw.
    • Anticipated cost: $1,000-$2,000 I think, maybe? Barring any unforeseen plumbing issues (which, let's be honest, there are probably totally unforeseen plumbing issues), of course.
Admittedly, this list is pretty weak. But, we just finished paying off the last of the basement bills (Amen!) and we're kinda digging not sweating, hauling and cussing in all of our spare time. In fact, it's really really lovely. Actually enjoying our house - who knew?

Here's to another great year - sans major unexpected disasters!

Love you, House.

Love, Alexson


  1. We're going to be attempting a concrete countertop in our kitchen - I know you did one in your basement - any advice? I've read up on what to do but thought I'd see if you had anything else to share! Thanks!

    1. How exciting! We LOVE our bartop. Hubs did it all and here are our tips:
      1. Measure, measure, measure :)
      2. Melamine makes for a very smooth form. We built the whole form of melamine and used silicone caulk in the ridges for smooth corners.
      3. Don't trust the colors! We bought concrete coloring powder at Home Depot in buff, but it turned out MUCH more of a muddled brown. It works for our space, so no big deal. If you're touchy on color, be sure to make a test patch.
      4. Get friends to help you lift. Moving our tiny 2x4 (ish) counter took three dudes, so I bet a whole kitchen is going to be hefty.
      5. Caulk the edges when you're done. We caulked the seems where the wall met the counter so that any spills won't get down in there and stink up the bar.

      Looking forward to seeing the afters!


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