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family home preservation process projects

That’s a Wrap on Home Renovations

Hubby and I have had a crazy-busy couple of months with getting the house ready to sell. So busy, in fact, that I haven’t had any time to blog.

We’ve finally wrapped up all of our home renovations and are in the selling part of the process.

I wanted to write a final post highlighting a few of the more interesting projects we finished.

During September and October, we painted, and painted some more, and then continued painting, right up to the end. There were evenings I stayed up until 10 or 11 at night painting, trying to get things done before we put the house on the market. The painting wasn’t all that interesting, other than it felt like we had almost completely repainted the entire interior.

Our more interesting projects included Erik creating new window sills for the dining room and bedroom out of flat boards; Erik, Eldest Son, and I making and installing new railings for the stairs; Erik and Eldest Son filling the cracked cement in the cistern with new cement; and Erik tiling a countertop.

Window sill in upstairs bedroom made and installed by Erik Warner, September 18, 2022.
Window sill in upstairs bedroom made and installed by Erik Warner, September 18, 2022.
Dining room window sill made and installed by Erik Warner, September 18, 2022.
Dining room window sill made and installed by Erik Warner, September 18, 2022.
Old dining room window sill Erik used as a pattern, September 20, 2022.
Old dining room window sill Erik used as a pattern, September 20, 2022.

Did I talk about trim in a previous post? Oh, yes, I talked about trim painting. Well, we had to install all that trim in five areas of the house. Creating the new sills was part of that process.

Making railings seemed like it would be complicated, especially with the returns (the section that meets the wall), but Erik figured it out in a snap. With Eldest Son’s help, we installed new railings to the second floor and basement.

Flight of stairs to second floor of house with new gray railing. October 23, 2022.
Flight of stairs to second floor of house with new gray railing. October 23, 2022.
New gray railing for the basement stairs. October 2, 2022.
New gray railing for the basement stairs. October 2, 2022.

Installing railings was one of those simple jobs that we should have done a long time ago. I enjoyed being able to grab the railing on the way up the stairs, feeling the solidity of it as I climbed.

The railings were installed the same weekend the cement floor in the cistern was repaired because Eldest Son and his partner were visiting to comfort us over the death of Aleksandr.

The cistern was the original basement space of the house, so it had an almost ladder-like stairway. When we put the addition on the house in c. 2004, we added basement under the addition, along with a new stairway, and had a doorway knocked out of the cistern wall to connect the two. We also took out the cistern stairs. All of this work left the floor a cracked mess underneath. We placed boards over the cracked area to walk into the cistern.

View of the cistern floor, where boards cover the cracked floor, January 14, 2022.
View of the cistern floor, where boards cover the cracked floor, January 14, 2022.
View of the cistern floor with the concrete patched. October 23, 2022.
View of the cistern floor with the concrete patched. October 23, 2022.

This was yet another job we should have tackled long ago.

One of the last jobs undertaken (aside from all the painting) was the tiling of a countertop done by Erik. We had used this counter by placing loose tiles on it, always meaning to get back to the project. One of the travertine tiles broke along the way and I didn’t think we had anymore left to match the remaining three, so the project went undone.

As I was cleaning out the basement, I found an additional eight travertine tiles, which allowed us to complete the counter.

Kitchen countertop with travertine tile arranged in a diamond pattern. October 23, 2022.
Kitchen countertop with travertine tile arranged in a diamond pattern. October 23, 2022.

Erik laid out the tile in a diamond pattern to match our other counters.

One of the major lessons we’ve taken away from having to make all of these repairs within a few months is that we should have done many of them sooner. We would have had the benefit of enjoying the results of the repairs and not have been stressed by trying to manage them all at once.

Our final day at the house was November 4, 2022, when we cleaned out the refrigerator, gathered up the TV, vacuum, toolbox, and last of our cleaning supplies, and left our keys on the counter.

We hope whoever owns the house after us will enjoy it as much as we have over the past 30 years.

2 thoughts on “That’s a Wrap on Home Renovations”

    1. Thank you, Clare! Yes, the hunt is now on for a new house. It’s a different hunt this time around, worthy of another blog post, I think. 🙂

Thoughtful comments welcome.