Basement Progress: Paint

That was fast!! I told you all how efficient these painters are. They were in and out of our house so quick, and their work looks like they spent a month on it. So worth the delay and hassle.

Since the ceiling is so low, we thought that Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace would be the perfect color to brighten up the space. We went with Benjamin Moore Newburyport Blue for an accent wall behind the bar and builtins. We couldn’t be happier with how it turned out. The basement looks like it comes from a completely different house, it’s crazy how much paint can do to a room.

Now that the paint is done, we are so excited to organize and decorate so that the kids have a clean, safe, and open place to play.

Basement Progress: Patching and Ceiling

Even with the week long delay, our painters are efficient and seriously do the best job. It makes sense why they are so busy and always delayed, everybody out here wants to use them!!

They arrived at 8am last week and left before 4. They got so much done their first day from patching all of the holes, repairing drywall, and painting the ceiling. I think when David walked through to see the progress, there was a huge sigh of relief that he decided against painting this himself. It is a ton of work, but this makes me even more excited to see how it looks primed and painted.

Basement Vanity

Why is it that David and I will discuss holding off on a project because it is not a priority, and then all of a sudden we cave and start the project as if it is top priority? Does this even make sense? I do tend to ramble these days.

Well, the bathroom in our basement is a perfect example of this.  Even though the basement is so not the way we would choose to do it if we were designing it ourselves, we are so lucky that we moved in to a house with a finished basement that included a full bathroom. The bathroom had an ugly dated vanity, and the shower tiles and hardware/ fixtures are so ugly, but it served it’s purpose when we had guests come to town. Redoing the bathroom down there was never really even a discussion. Every once in a while we would talk about retiling the shower, but that was the extent of it.

Once the date got closer to the basement being painted, David started looking up different vanities that might work in that small space. His logic was that if they are already in there and painting, shouldn’t we just have the bathroom done the way we want. I mean, yes we should. It definitely makes sense to have a pretty new vanity to go with the pretty paint, and if we waited to put in the vanity that meant David would for sure have to do some patching and painting on his own eventually. So, why not just get it out of the way.  We chose a vanity that was simple, inexpensive, and worked in the small space, but while we were debating which vanity to order, David thought- why not get a new toilet while we are at it. So, we now have a new vanity and new toilet, and an ugly blue tiled shower.  We both agreed that we would wait on the shower. With the bathroom being painted, the tile won’t look as bad, but it will definitely be replaced someday soon. Maybe during David’s paternity leave.

I’m really happy with how it is looking, and once the paint is finished we can order a cool mirror, light, and replace all of the hardware that is in there.

Ready to Start the Basement

Ahhh! So so sorry I have been MIA. Between Eli, Dax, and I, we have all been extremely sick. Too sick to really even function. We all had different things ranging from tonsillitis, bronchitis, ear infections, asthma, sinus infections, fevers, croup, pneumonia scares, broken bones, etc.  It also doesn’t help that I am 38 weeks pregnant and feel like I am a 90 year old who isn’t able to take care of themself!

David has been as helpful as he possibly could be despite working full time, and he’s done as much as he could with the house in between taking care of all of us.

I have a few progress updates I hope to share before this baby arrives!

Remember when I mentioned that David agreed to hire out the basement?  It took some convincing for sure, but he finally agreed to it and that’s all that matters at the end of the day.

The painters scheduled us for August 14 to start the project. We had so much prepping to do.  We needed to remove all of the shelving, book cases, wall cubes, etc. from the walls and put it all in the middle of the basement. We also had to gather all of the kids’ toys, trucks, vehicles, trampolines, and everything else in the middle as well. David needed to finish some moldings, the bar he started months ago, and he decided to replace the bathroom vanity- but we will touch on that later.

On August 13, David reached out to the painter since we haven’t heard from him for a while.  He wanted to give him the paint colors we decided on, and ask for an ETA since we had a lot going on that day. We didn’t hear back from him. The next morning, still no word. David reached out 2 times, nothing. I was telling a friend about it who uses him often, and she said he is really bad at returning messages but always shows up around 9:30. 9:30 rolls around, no show. 10:00, nothing. David finally decided to call and sure enough the painter told him he was delayed and would need to come back the next week.  That was that.

Not only was there tons of prep work David rushed to do, but the kids also lost their main play space, and it was just one more week we couldn’t get the basement ready before the baby gets here! But, what can we do?!

Let’s fast forward to Sunday night. David reaches out again, asking when they were planning on showing up this week. We wanted to plan our week around it. No response. Hours later we hear back, and the painter says “Can we reschedule to September 20?”

First of all, no, no we can’t reschedule to September 20. We were both livid, but we also thought maybe he meant August 20th. Doubtful, but it’s always good to give somebody the benefit of the doubt, right? David wanted to respond with something rude, but I told him to breathe and give himself a little time before responding. He decided to go with “I’m sorry, did you mean August 20? September won’t work as we are having a baby next week” Well, that worked out well. He got an instant response with “we will see you Wednesday” Hallelujah!

So, on Wednesday they started the basement and all we need is for this baby to stay put for at least one more week!

Nursery Round 2

This is really embarrassing, but also really typical.  As we moved Dax into his big boy room, I realized that we never finished his beautiful nursery to begin with.  I couldn’t be more annoyed that this poor child was living in an unfinished room for his entire first 2 years of life, but all we could do is make sure that this next baby has a beautiful, perfect, completed room to be born into!

Here is a little refresher of what the nursery looked like when Dax lived in this room.  It seriously was my favorite room of the house and made me so sad to have to move him out of it.  Logistically, it just makes sense for the baby to be in this room though, and once we moved Dax into his new room and realized that it didn’t fit a glider, we couldn’t have been more pleased with our decision.

Since we don’t know the gender of this baby, it makes it a little difficult to decorate. I have a set vision if it were a boy, and a set vision if it is a girl.  With Eli and Dax I wanted something very gender neutral so it made it pretty easy.  This is the first time we aren’t moving right before I go into labor, so I want to be as settled as I possibly can and that means making decisions for the room if the baby is a girl, and making decisions if it is a boy.  We picked two paint colors and we decided to paint Eli’s old crib assuming it’s a girl, and we purchased a new crib that is returnable assuming it is a boy.  That way, when the baby is born, we don’t need to decide on paint colors, or wait 8 weeks for a darn crib to come.  We ordered a gender neutral book case and dresser as well which helped with my stress level. It literally took me weeks to make a decision on these two pieces of furniture.

As we emptied the room out to move everything into Dax’s new room, there was a lot more we noticed that was unfinished than we originally anticipated.  So, now that we have our paint colors decided, it is time to prep these walls, and complete some other items that never got checked off of our list.

Hiring out the Basement

I’ve mentioned multiple times now that the new rule with our home renovation is that if David doesn’t finish by the timeline I give him, we will be hiring out the next project (or portions of it).

I will admit I’ve been giving him some wiggle room with certain things, but when it comes to the basement, it’s a non negotiable.

Months ago David agreed to hire the basement out. I allowed him to knock down and build the new bar, build the built in media unit, redo the floors, and some other minor things. He said we can hire out the drywall and paint. Not completely sure what happened, but we never followed through with our painter, and the basement has been at a standstill since February/ March.

We spent so much time organizing and going through a lot of our stuff and finally felt like we were in a good place for the kids to play down there and have play dates down there. Well, that went out the door…quickly.

The basement is beyond a hot mess. It gives me so much anxiety even being down there. I pretty much am down there just to work out with my boyfriend, I mean Peloton. Not to mention the spiders down there. Yikes!!

After David finished Dax’s big boy room by his deadline, he admitted that he really didn’t want to do the basement. Not sure if it was my lack in pressure or what, but I couldn’t be more relieved, thrilled, happy, ecstatic that we are hiring out this project.

They start in August which means we have to go through everything. I’m tired of just organizing boxes and bins. I want to use this as an opportunity to go through every box and every bin and purge purge purge.

So far we have gotten through the storage closet and have a long way to go, but by doing a little bit each night, we are sure to get this done before August!

I can’t wait to finally have a clean and organized space that doesn’t give me anxiety, and yes I know I’ve said this before!

Dax’s Big Boy Room: All Moved In

You guys will never believe this, but…David finished Dax’s new room by the deadline I gave him! Woohoo! Best miracle ever!

Once the paint was finished, we we started moving Dax’s things into his new room.  We are keeping all of his furniture the same until he is ready for a big boy bed, which hopefully isn’t for a long time.  I love how the white paint looks with the black, gold, and green accents.  It is a perfect room for our wild boy and definitely one that he will be able to grow into.  It is so hard to believe that it used to be dark wood, and blue, and now it is light, airy, and bright.

The room is a lot smaller than we anticipated, so it is a good thing we decided to make this Dax’s big boy room instead of the new nursery.  There is no way the glider would have fit in here, so it couldn’t have worked out better.

We are still waiting on the closet doors and closet door hardware to arrive as well as a mirror for above Dax’s dresser.  Since the room is 98%, it’s time to get that nursery competed as best as we can so we can feel fully prepared for the baby.

Dax’s Big Boy Room: Paint

How is it already Monday?! Did you all have a good holiday weekend? Since the 4th was on a Thursday this year, David took Friday off and we headed to the city for the day with the boys.  We are trying to take in everything we can before this baby arrives here soonish.

Obviously, the other reason I love long holiday weekends, is because David gets stuff done.  He finished painting Dax’s room and it looks so clean and bright.  I am really happy we decided to do moldings instead of wallpaper and keep it all white.  I know white can be boring, but I think it looks super cool in this room.

We went with Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace and I really think this is my new favorite white.  We are going to do our entire basement in this as well, but more on that later.

With the painting being done, all that is left to do is clean up and move Daxxy into his new room! He is so excited, but it is definitely bitter sweet for me since it means he is that much closer to not being my baby anymore.

Broken Tile, Messy Grout, Bad Vanity Planning, and Paint Splatters

I think that our contractor and his men wanted to be done with the bathroom just as bad as we wanted it to be done.

Besides not reading the reviews for this company, our biggest regret was not having the contractor do a final walkthrough because there was a lot more to be fixed than we anticipated.

Last weekend, David went to deep clean the bathroom so that we could move the boys into it. Who would have thought sharing s bathroom with two small children for 2 months would be such an ordeal?! As he was cleaning we discovered quite a few things that we would have expected to be fixed.

The grout is kind of mess but I really think if we used a lighter color it would have turned out great. I just expected more from a professional company. We noticed one broken tile and three scratched tiles in the shower. All which can’t be fixed but need to be chiseled out.When David was walking in the bathroom, you can hear and feel that some of the floor tiles are loose. Again, they need to be chiseled out.They did terrible planning when installing the vanity because the drawer on the end cannot be opened all of the way due to the window trim being in the way. Unfortunately, this is something that can’t be fixed at this point.Lastly (from what we could tell), there was ceiling paint splattered all over the counters. I’m not exaggerating here, splatters everywhere. Luckily the counters are light so it’s hard to tell, but it took a while to scrape them off and we didn’t even get all of them!I am so mad we didn’t have the contractor do a final walkthrough but I am so grateful that David could fix all of this stuff. We would be in big trouble if he couldn’t.

We learned so much during this experience and with all of the trouble and stress that came with it, at least the bathroom is done…but no the boys still aren’t moved into it yet!

Blue Tape and No Final Walkthrough

One thing that we were asked to do, was walk through the bathroom and blue tape anything we might need to be fixed.

David and I walked through and found so many things, it really wasn’t even worth blue taping. I figured that when Monday rolled around, I would basically tell the guys that they need to clean up their grout job as it is thicker in some places and thinner in others. It looked like David could have done it and the point of paying money for a contractor was so that it looked more professional than David’s grout job (not that there’s anything wrong with David’s grout job), we just wanted a professional look.

Fixing the electrical problems from the weekend was on our punch list, there was some bad dry wall work and painting that needed fixing, sealing the counters and shower, and then just cleaning up so that the bathroom could finally be used.

When the guys showed up they weren’t thrilled that we didn’t blue tape- understandably so. I showed them where the grout looked good which was pretty much one side of the shower, and explained that that was how I wanted the grout to look everywhere. He told me that because we picked black grout, it’s very dark and really hard to get perfect. He said if we looked at the grout in our master bathroom and kitchen we wouldn’t notice the imperfections because it’s white and light gray. That makes total sense but I still think that they could do a much better job considering they are professionals. They shouldn’t blame their work on our color choice.

I mentioned the dry wall and he gave me attitude about it, and lastly I said the electric needed to be fixed because we weren’t paying until it was fixed. He proceeded to blame us again and said that they have already done enough free stuff for me and they wouldn’t fix this too. Umm what?? What free stuff he was talking about I had no idea. I obviously asked and he said that they hung the towel bars and mirrors for us and that wasn’t in the contract. That was super confusing to me. Never met a contractor that doesn’t include hanging mirrors to complete a bathroom. Thanks for the free work I guess?? I told him that David cut his foot and wasn’t able to get the sealer for the bathroom. Don’t worry everyone, that wasn’t in the contract either so he wasn’t going to seal even if we had it. Ridiculous.

At around 2:30-3:00, the guys packed everything up, left, and that was that. Our main contractor, Steve, told David he would be over at 5:15 to collect the completion check and we also assumed he would do a final walkthrough like our last contractor (and I think most contractors?).

David rushed to get home in time and was pretty nervous to see Steve since we hadn’t talked to him or seen him since the previous week when he called and attacked me over the phone. 5:20 rolls around, no Steve. 5:40, no Steve. 6:00 and he finally shows up. Some nerve not letting us know he would be that late.

Anyway, he showed up, had zero desire to see the completed bathroom and just wanted the check. David was way nicer than I would have been. I would have demanded that he looked at the bathroom especially since David didn’t even see the final product yet!

Steve left without seeing the bathroom, with his check, and fortunately we never have to see this man again. Let’s just say, I was fuming and all I could think about was writing my review on this awful man and the horrific way he does business.