Thursday, July 10, 2008

What's going on at our house:

Put on your hardhats and join me on a little tour?
Before: The walls of our central room (sometimes used as a living room, sometimes used as a dining room) were covered in cheap old paneling, originally dinge-grey, painted white, topped with a cutting-edge-in -1970 acoustic tile ceiling. Ick. (That's Frodo, the mouse's, tank in the fireplace, in case you wondered, not a tv...)
Off comes the paneling. Check out the wallpaper...Craftsman from the nineteen-teens, or 1940s tropical? What do you think?

Down comes the acoustic tile - just the first layer of the ceiling(s) to be removed. Check out the wallpaper behind Jon there. It's incredibly thick...... like vinyl, and backed with some kind of tar paper. We think it must be pretty early. I actually like the little graphic flower designs (above). That hole with insulation coming out of it used to connect to passive solar. Unfortunately, that system no longer exists, so we're covering up the holes.

Down comes the last layer of ceiling (above). These were very old tiles, with a pattern smudged on it (below), as if there were once a pressed tin ceiling here. Doggone whoever took it down!

Cleaning up and hauling out the debris was not nearly a much fun as pulling it all down. "I've got a rainbow (Huh!), a rainbow 'round my shoulder (huh!)..."

Michelle taking a rest. "Hard work lugging that camera around, Mom?"

The little ones snuggled up on the couch in the kitchen hard at work watching Jimmy Neutron.
The walls and ceiling are down to studs (or something) at this point, and it's time to start rebuilding:

First the Ceiling. This contraption (above) is the jack that holds up the sheetrock while the kids drill in a bazillion screws to hold it up securely.

Here's a closer look at how the jack works. It's true that half the job is having the right tools. In this case, I think it may be more than half the job!

Some trimming and fine tuning going on here. Jon is our detail man, and all around foreman on this job, as Dad's not home enough to take charge. And, well, actually, he's found he doesn't need to. Jon and Dominic have things well in hand on their own. It's a wonderful thing having grown-up boys (young men!) around the house.

Michelle cleaning out the debris from behind the fireplace. The trickiest part of the whole project is going to be fitting the sheetrock around here.

Dominic countersinking screws in the new walls as they go up. Tedious, but necessary. (Note the chair he's sitting on that they broke using as a stepstool... =sigh=)

Dad working on the electrical.

The one completely finished wall thus far. Well, um, I mean, "finished" but not finished.

And our dining room/living room for the time being. Don't my couches look like they're patiently waiting for this to be over so they can get back to where they belong? You can almost feel their resignation. Mine, too.

This, too, shall pass... And my living room will be so nice when it's finished!

I'll keep you posted as we make progress.


Matilda said...

Hey, we've been doing a living room makeover too although just cosmetic, not reconstructive like yours! I am sure it is going to look amazing when you are all done. I wish I had some of those young men helpers here. My oldest doesn't even have the muscle to help me move a couch yet. Gotta get that kid some weights! : )

GrandmaK said...

Reminds me of the year we remodeled the entire upstairs of our old house. All the furniture was in the living room and so the Christmas tree that year was set up in the kitchen dining area...Hmmm, I should have taken pictures! Have a grand week!! It looks like a lot of head way has been made! I'm off to MT!! Cathy

Marie said...

lol Lisa:)
I feel for you. We have just finished renovating our bathroom. What a pain in the proverbial!!!! ARGH!

Peace to you:)

Marie xoxoxo (if you feel in need of a chuckle read my blog lol;) )

Laura said...

I don't know if they are faking it for the camera, but your children seem HAPPY helping with these tasks.
How do you do it?

Lisa said...

Matilda ~ The boys are a definite asset, I gotta tell ya! Took a lot of years to get them to this point, but, boy, was it worth the wait! Is your house a construction-warzone like ours?

Oh, my goodness, Cathy! We've had to do projects over Christmas vacation, too, and I HATE that! &:o)

LOL! Yes, indeed, Marie. It's a pain in the proverbial, alright! I can't wait to be done with it!

Laura ~ Ya know, the kids really don't mind doing these things at all. I can't say as I even know why really, except that it's always been part of our life ~ rebuilding old falling down houses. I think the children get as big a charge out of the good results as we parental types do. The middle-room rehab was actually Jon's idea. We were going to wait on it, but the old yucky walls in there just bugged the bejeebers out of my visual/artist son. He couldn't take it another day, so we told him we'd get him the stuff if he'd spearhead the project.