Friday, April 30, 2010


We're opening up 4 of the 6 fireplaces to be working...they just started knocking through to put in a new flue

And the brand new stairway/hall skylight. So shiny.
If coca cola would like to sponsor me, please do. So many bottles and cans subtly placed here and there...I have the brand-placement down. Don't you feel like drinking coke?

New sheetrock, old doors...

Hopefully some of the old salvage doors will balance out the sheetrock...
Basement (from hall to back bedroom)
top floor bathroom:
Parlor floor bathroom:
And basement bath...

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Top Floor

Seems like the 2nd floor--which will be for the tenant--is getting sheet-rocked first.
This is looking towards the living room (bathroom on the left, large closet on the right)
It's hard to tell, even with Todd in there for scale, but the ceilings in the front room are ridiculously high. We had to fight the contractor to leave them that way and let them slope--but it was so worth it.

and towards the back of the house where their kitchen will be:
It's hard for me to look at all this sheet-rock, thinking about the old plaster walls that used to be there, but I just have to think about the details that will go in later....lots and lots of details. Please.

The tubs...

are in place....more or less.

(don't ask me how they got this one to the top floor--it's like 500 lbs)

Friday, April 23, 2010

Huh. (Part 2)

Oh, You're going to like this! Apparently this little step was created because the floor was raised so much when they leveled everything out... But the top step of the stairway can't be raised enough to match it. The solution was that they were intending to create a little RAMP from this mini step to the top stair. Yes. I said ramp. A ramp at the top of a set of stairs. Sounds safe to me.
Now it looks like we will have to completely replace the stairs and banister which really stinks, but it's the only way to make it fit. I love that original banister. Such a shame.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010


The thing I'm learning about this whole construction thing is that if you don't stop by every single day...bad things happen.
Would anyone like to tell me why:
My ceiling is getting lowered 10 full inches for no reason? (That bar there is the new framing--it doesn't look like much in the photo...but trust me.)
Or, maybe,... Why the pipe is BELOW the framing for the ceiling and not above? (we're in the bathroom--and that's the new skylight)
or What is this weird little mini mystery step above the flight of stairs on the 2nd floor landing?
Just curious, that's all.

Monday, April 19, 2010

The new ghost of Redhook

Grey Gardens...?

Two buildings over is a very cute, very old little house, set way back from the street and apparently in distress. It's currently inhabited, and a couple of days ago it looked like part of the front porch caved in. I would kill to see what it's like inside--must have been really nice back in the day. We think this may be the main source of stray cats on the block.
By the looks of the siding another house must have once adjoined it, but now there's just an empty mystery lot with shipping containers.


This is the basement rear--where the bedroom will be. They just opened up the wall to fit the double doors...I'm already thinking about laying in bed all day, watching the stray cats in the yardand the living room and kitchen on the parlor floor taking shape. It's weird, it feels strangely bigger with the divisions.

The Contractor's Diet.

It must be working. They're super-speedy.

Help me. I'm sinking.

No, really. I drove 5 hours for this sink. I may be officially insane.
But look how pretty...
It's from an old victorian, somewhere in a very beautiful part of New Jersey. The search has been tough but it's nice to have things with history--and from interesting homes, nice people...
Next weekend we go to PA for yet another...

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Doors and doorways.

A mere few of the doors we picked up at the salvage yard for a song --waiting in the backyard to be stripped of lead paint.

And a mystery doorway in the basement wall that must have originally gone to the house next door...I guess their place it was built before mine?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Today's Surprises.

When I stopped by today (to unload the tub) I found that the walls are already going up in the basement. These guys work so fast. It's fun to see the rooms starting to take shape.

And even more of a surprise, violets all over the backyard.

The Little Car That Could

I thought I should pay tribute to our car which finally got relieved of the second bathtub that has been sitting in it for several weeks. Five feet of tub, and it's just a hatchback--it was so patient.

Oh the heartache.

Todd spotted this lamp in a small shop in RI this weekend. I wasn't really sure at first--partly because it was a little pricey and partly because I can't get over the idea that it looks like a bunch of ears. But I thought about it for a day--it was for the living room where the ceilings are pretty high, plus the waterfront tie-in, and just the weirdness of it....and then I couldn't stop thinking about it. Of course when we drove back on our way to was sold. Anybody see one around town, let me know!

Monday, April 12, 2010

O'Keefe Merritt

This weekend we drove all the way to Mass for this stove--purchased from a family renovating an old victorian house who decided they needed something a little more....current. It does not clean itself--BUT when you open the oven door, printed on the inner enamel is a list of all the things you might want to cook and what temperature to use. Included in this list are "jelly rolls" which is honestly something I've never thought of making, but now feel obliged to.
It nearly killed my contractors to unload it from the van. This thing is insanely heavy. Wait until I show up tomorrow with a tub in my car for them to extract....

Monday, April 5, 2010

Reality sets in.

Oh my goodness. What have I done?

Meet my contractors.

Who suggested to me today that it might just be easier to buy a new house.

They are really amazing and burning through the job. They may even be done a month or 2 sooner than expected. Hard working, and really thorough. They even set up a small altar in my basement with incense and an orange as an offering. Anyone who wants their info, just comment--I will be happy to pass along their name.

In case you're wondering

why we're doing this, it's all about the yard. 60'x20'. yessiree bob.

Demo in action.

The back of the house today. I guess not everything fits.
Some tin that couldn't be saved from the basement ceiling.
The front a few days ago before 3 dumpsters came to cart everything away.


The exterminator just came this past weekend.
This is one of the beams at the side of the house....holding up the...uhhh..roof. No reason to be concerned.
We discovered that a lot of the beams are in a similar state and need to be replaced or shored up.

Top Floor: from as we found it to total gut.

In some ways, this was the nicest floor with the most original details left in tact.

When the walls and floors still existed--and yes, those are electric boxes hanging everywhere.

Top Floor front, back and side.

Parlor Floor: As we found it, to total gut.

The general state of things as we found them.
(it killed me to see the vestibule door go but it was beyond repair)

Looking towards the front, and then the back.

The main stairs. (we're hoping to be able to save the banister)

Parlor Floor, looking towards the back of the house: