First Things First!

Thanks to all my new followers, it’s official, I’m no longer writing to myself anymore and the pressure is on!  Thanks for the support guys, I am thrilled! Now I just need to get you all caught up on our progress!

So first things first!!! I CANNOT stand the idea of living in someone else’s past. Call me high maintenance, prissy, OCD… You don’t know WHAT they did while they were there: how often they cleaned or didn’t clean, animals they may have owned, habits they may have had (nose pickin’ n’ flickin’) … the list goes on! Worst of all, it’s the thought of bodily fluids and human dander that gets me. I’m sorry, it just had to be said. So with that in mind, gag, I am on a mission to rid any trace of the previous occupants and start afresh. Clean slate. {Those two words alone cause me to take a deep breath of rejuvenating air!}

The first 3 things that made it on my to-do’s list

1) Remove the Carpets: A. It’s pink. Guessing they added this lovely mauve addition to the house in the 80’s, maybe early 90’s? B. It’s filthy-trashed. I don’t know what the big black stains are from, but I don’t find them very becoming. C. I don’t like carpet! To think that at the time, carpet coverings were considered more luxurious than hardwood flooring!? I know, such is the ebb and flow of fashion. Things come and go, and what was once hideous is suddenly stylish – BUT – I feel that one of the worst trends to hit the world of home decor was wall-to-wall carpeting. I can understand the desire to decrease noise levels, and I totally see the need for comfort especially now that I have a little one toppling about. I cannot, however, understand choosing to cover beautiful SOLID wood floors with tack strips, staples, nails and glue, rather than just purchasing an oversized nearly-wall-to-wall AREA RUG! This is just my opinion; everything has its pros and cons. I’m not saying that I dislike every house with carpet, that’s not what I’m saying at all! I’m simply comparing carpet to hard floors and stating, if I had a choice, I would choose hardwood over comfy carpet any day. I’m sure there are many who would disagree, and please give your feedback (especially if you are someone who lives on hard floors and wishes you could have some soft cushy carpet under your cold, tired toes!)

First clue that there might be hardwood throughout the house was the runner on the stairs

Water stains… Can’t wait to refinish these!

Love watching my man work ❤

My poor hubby! The hardest part was removing EVERY SINGLE tack strip & staple, then scrapping off gunk n’ glue

In LOVE ❤

This was much heavier than you would think!

There was hardwood throughout the entire 2nd level, but sadly,  just ol’ Linoleum in the bathrooms

Wonder what year this is? I’m thinking it’s original since it has the metallic gold flecks? I was so grossed out by the hairs!

Most confusing part of the day… the family room hardwood had been ripped out and there was nothing but subfloor under this carpet 😦

2) Remove all Moulding: I know this project “technically speaking” should’ve come first since removing the carpet is somewhat contingent upon the baseboards being out, and we would be idiots to do it in this reverse order! But in my head… the unlivable carpet begged to sit at the TOP of this priority list! (Don’t worry, we took the baseboards out PRE-carpet removal!) Anyway… reasons for removing the moulding: A. I was told by my son’s pediatrician that most people are aware of the lead paint used in houses built before 1980, but that many are unaware of its presence in varnish. So apparently, the moulding in this 1960’s house is likely poisoned with lead. I’m not ok with KNOWINGLY exposing my child or anyone else’s child to that!  B. It’s pretty beat up. It would take forever to fill all the gouges, cracks and dings, and painting it would be like putting a giant band-aid over a broken leg!  C. With each turn of the decadebaseboards seem to grow higher and higher, reverting back to their historical roots. But this house is from the 60’s, so we’re talkin’ even shorter than the 90’s stuff! I would actually be fine living with the beat up condition and dark walnut stain for a period of time, in fact I would even prefer it over natural oak. What bothers me the most about the moulding is how thin the baseboards are.  It’s crazy to me that the typical baseboard during the Colonial period was 1″x 12″, and that the shortest was during the Federal era at 6″. What happened!? How did we get down to this cheap  1/4″ x 2″ stuff!? I read on Woodcrafter’s.com that “base moulding should be the most massive in the room to emphasize the strength of the wall…”. So basically these short little strips of wood that claim to be my baseboards are really saying that my house is light and wimpy! I don’t know about you, but I’d like my home to appear sturdy and stately! This is a very well-built home, with finishing touches that cause its quality to be diminished. Finishing touches are KEY! It’s like choosing that perfect filter for your photo before you make it public on Instagram. It will either make it or break it, whether or not the picture was even worthy of posting in the first place!

Short History lesson: Moulding originates clear back to Greek carpentry, and if you look back at almost every major period of American architecture you can see its classical form could be likened to the temple colonnades. Crown Moulding, Picture Rail, Chair Rail, Paneling, Casings, and Baseboards each represent a different piece of the column! Read  The Decoration of Houses by Edith Wharton 1897

Goodbye short stack!

Found evidence of possible fire or smoke damage!!!

Really hoping we’re not sending any harmful lead particles air born : /

3) Knock Out Add-On Wall in Upstairs Bonus Room:  A. It has a window that looks into the adjoining room using one way glass, and the door locks from the outside… it really makes you wonder, “what happened in this room?” Interrogations? Experiments? Observations? My sister-in-law thinks it could have been used for a child with autism. This would be a relief to find out as my mind has wandered to some pretty obscene things!  B. The wall is separating from the surrounding walls, so if we don’t take it out, one of our kids just might accidentally knock it over someday! (Well, that’s probably a bit of a dramatization.)  C. Eventually this room is going to be my music studio, and although it seems like it would have made more sense to keep this wall for separating the recording booth from the control room, I really only need about half this space and my husband has a grand plan that will be much better than this paper-thin wall!

Now it’s time for a cleanup!

Phase 1: Done! And this was just the first day!

Happy afternoon Everyone!

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4 thoughts on “First Things First!

  1. Woohoo, hooray for an amazing adventure!! This is going to be so fun to watch this house transform! We have hardwoods in our house and love them, but we did recently put carpet in the living room which we love due to kiddos and comfiness factor!

  2. I’m loving this! Can’t wait for more. Definately going to put in new baseboards now that I know the true history behind them:)) well at least that will add more muscle to my list of reasons for doing it, ha!…Keep on blogging:)

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