Weeks 15-16 House Makeover

30 01 2012

Week 15 was fixing little things and not much to show such as touching up the drywall and adding a light switch.

Week 16, however, was the final stucco color coat which has a major impact to update the look of the whole house

There was another incredible sunset, so there are a few shots from behind our house.

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Found a yellow spot on the ceiling. This can’t be good.


Week 14 – Tile Sets the Style

24 01 2012

Finishing the bathroom tile was another major milestone.  Now the design is finally taking shape.  Kudos to Susan Deneau Interior Design for great advice and suggestions.  http://www.sdeneau-id.com/   This week I put the photos into a slideshow making it easier to see the work as it progresses.

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Week 13 – Sand Man Pays Visit

22 01 2012

It was a very sandy, gritty week.  The top layer of our old stucco was sandblasted off revealing previous paint colors.  The original color was a pale green from 1950.  There was a layer of pink probably from the 80’s followed by the current cream color.  Needless to say this process left piles of sand all around. It even made its’ way into our bedroom closet light fixture along with some water that got into the attic through the eave vents.  That glass light fixture looked like a fish bowl on our ceiling with a light bulb inside instead of a fish.  (I didn’t get a chance to take a photo of it as Chris quickly removed it to dump out the water and sand.)  The contractor came over right away to check it out and put back a couple of eave vents that had blown into the attic.  I put a large fan in the attic to be sure the ceiling drywall dried out. All is well.

     Sandblasting Aftermath

This is the view from inside the house during the sandblasting.  Did I mention how loud it was?


After the sandblasting the moon was out early, so I took a few photos.  I got this great shot on my Canon PowerShot in the manual mode and opening the aperture which resulted in a black sky even though it was still twilight.


On Saturday they applied the “brown” coat of stucco to even out the old stucco and make a nice even surface for the final color coat.  Note the pile of sand in the driveway. In a couple of weeks they will apply the final color coat around the whole house, so the addition will look like it was always there.   We can’t wait.


Stucco brown coat Second Stucco Layer

TILE WORK BEGINS IN THE NEW MASTER BATHROOM – They brought in another pile of sand in our driveway, this time to mix mortar for the bathroom tile prep.  More on this next week, but now it’s time to play in the sand.

Shower Stall Cemented Shower Floor Tile Prep

Tiling in Progress Shower Wall Tile Goes Up

Weeks 11 – 12 Mud & Mortar

12 01 2012

I called this Mud & Mortar week, because there was a lot of both being slapped up.  On the interior, drywall mud went up throughout the addition and in parts of our existing house.   Meanwhile the first layer of stucco, called a “scratch” coat, was applied on the exterior.

DRYWALL MUD – There’s a ton of it everywhere.  In the left photo the area above the window is all mud to level out those cut-out areas with the earthquake straps.  In the right photo is looking down the hallway.  Didn’t realize they use so much of the stuff.  And it all has to be sanded smooth. They wet sanded, but there’s still a lot of residue and dust.  Respirators and masks are a must around this stuff.  Best just to avoid the area altogether if you can.


  < THE BATHROOM VANITY goes on this wall.

Below the tub got a good dose of mud in and around it that I wiped off before it hardened.  And next to it the doors in the laundry room are covered in plastic.



STUCCO – The first “scratch” coat is applied.  It’s cement on your house, the norm in California.


At the last minute we decided to cover up the old brick chimney.


We also decided to restucco the whole house, so that will add a few extra days to the project timeline. Oh well, at least the new and old will be seamless, which you’ll see in a few weeks.   After this we took a week off to be with family over the holidays.  There was no snow, for which some of us were very thankful, while others were very disappointed.  One final task of 2011 was to buy and install locking door knobs, which really made us realize it won’t be long before we get to live in this new part of our house on greenwood.  Thanks for following along!

Week 10 – Progress Inside & Out

8 01 2012

HAPPY 2012 everyone!  There’s been significant progress since my last post!   December was a busy month to say the least.  It is normally hectic before and during the holidays, but with a big construction project on top of that it’s a perfect storm.

During the 10th week (Dec. 12-18) the addition got some insulation in the ceiling and walls. Nothing special,  just the basic pink fiberglass stuff to meet the building code here in California where it rarely gets below 45-50 degrees fahrenheit.  They also put some spray foam around the windows.  These energy saving items are now required to meet code, which is a good thing.  Older homes in California like ours have zero insulation, so you bake in the summer and freeze in the winter.  It’s most comfortable in the spring and fall around here.

Once that work passes inspection the drywall starts to go up.  Meanwhile another crew did some finishing work on the wire (aka “chicken wire”) around the exterior doors.  Here are some photos.

INSULATION –  In the Bedroom & Bathroom


SPRAY FOAM AROUND WINDOWS – Notice the staples and nail … must be a new insulating technique … ha-ha  😉  After pointing this out to the general contractor he came and fixed that spot.


DRYWALL GOES UP – Note all the earthquake straps above the windows.  These straps stick out so they have to cut the drywall around these and later on will fill these recesses with joint compound.  These 3 photos are in the bedroom.


 < Bathroom   < Laundry room

EXTERIOR WIRE – To hold the stucco coats to be applied over the next few weeks.


Materials Information –

Windows – Marvin Integrity All Ultrex http://www.infinitywindows.com/?page=ultrex-fiberglass

Exterior Wrap – GMC Roofing & Building Paper Products  http://www.gmcpaper.com/contact_us.html