More progress to report on the house renovations! The huge project we started about five years ago is starting to near its end! In a nutshell, our plan was to expand the kitchen into the eat-in-kitchen/woodstove room, convert the screened porch into a dining room and replace the two-car garage with a great room. Here’s the plans to get you oriented – the spaces highlighted in pink show the area that we’ve been working on:
Here’s the before:
There were many harrowing moments along the way. Like when we started hacking away at the outside of the house. Big holes = big scary.
Here is what the front of the house looked like when we took out the garage doors (this photo always freaks me out you can read more about why it does at this post)…
And here is the picture at the back of the house showing the new dormer going in. You can see that two OTHER garages sat beneath the ones we renovated into the great room. Who needs four garages? Not us.
And here is what that looked like from the inside:
We stopped working on the great room once the framing was done. Inside, we kept the place pretty much the same – here you can see the white door that leads to the old garage/new great room space and the sliding glass doors to the old porch/new dining room:
The back side of that white door is blue on the old garage side. You can see how rough it was out there – we lived with this for a long time.
And then earlier this fall we decided to go for it and push to finish the great room and convert the porch into the dining room. You can read about that glorious time at this post if you want to hear me wax poetic about tearing down walls. And you can also read this post to learn about the decision to add antique barn beams to the great room.
Today I’ll show you the insulation part of the project that followed right after demo – its like tucking the house into a big cozy house blanket. And boy did it need it!
This picture shows the same corner where the white-to-blue door was and where the sliding glass doors to the porch were:
Here’s the old porch without its sliding glass doors, waiting to become the dining room…
And here’s the new dormer at the back of the great room:
and here is the front of great room where the old garage doors used to be
And this is looking back to the main part of the house toward the new dining room. We built that angled wall to have a good spot to mount a TV. Look at all that plaster that is ready to roll!
Here’s the north wall of the great room – I used little windows there just so we could grab some light and see people coming down the driveway but maintain some privacy. We used a lot of glass in this room, so keeping windows tiny on this wall was fine with me!
and just opposite that wall is the fireplace wall at the south end of the great room. We had big ideas of building a see through fire place there at one time, but we’ve since decided to put in a nice little Vermont Castings wood stove instead. We had a wonderful Waterford woodstove on the kitchen side of this wall for a long time and it was a really great heat source! We’ll get rid of the Waterford and install the Vermont Castings later this year. Need to finish detailing the plan for the mason first…
Those beams are my favorite thing right now. They aren’t original to the house, but came from another house here in town that I used to DREAM of owning. It was old and dilapidated and abandoned but I thought I could coax it back to life. One day I drove by and it had been demolished and I was so sad. But as fate would have it, when I started looking for beams for this project, someone in town had salvaged all the timbers from that house and now two of them live with me! Funny how things work out.
Well, today is Thanksgiving and I’m very thankful for all of the wonderful (and I do mean WONDERFUL) people in my life. I’m also grateful to see the light at then end of this long construction tunnel. We actually had out dinner in the dining room today – I’ll post again in a few days to show you how it all looks now that the plaster is up and we’re starting to move in.
Happy Thanksgiving all.