July 28, 2004

Front Door

We get asked about our front door and storm door pretty often. When we were trying to decide on doors we drove around our neighborhood taking pictures and really liked one of our neighbor's doors. We took the picture to Edward Hines Lumber, and they were super helpful looking through books with us to find similar door styles.

We ended up buying our front door from Simpson Door Company: And our storm door from The Combination Door Company. It has a glass front for winter and a screen front that we use the rest of the year.

We ordered both of them through Edward Hines. They came unfinished, and we stained and sealed them. We were on a really tight budget for our siding, windows, and roof so we could do them all at one time, but this splurge on the doors was totally worth it - it really makes all the difference in the look of the entire house.

July 12, 2004

Exterior Remodeling

The first step was to remove the old porch and concrete steps:
Next were the support posts and porch structure.
Porch flooring:
This was a crazy day - we were getting lots of deliveries and almost every crew was here except the roofing guys.A before picture of the siding:

The new siding in progress:
It's coming together nicely! We still need a new front door, gutters, trim on the porch posts,and paint for the porch.
Prairie Path Pavers really helped us out with this last minute decision to put in a new sidewalk from the porch to the driveway. We were also thrilled with the choices that O'Donovan Landscaping helped us with, a few small evergreens and two burning bushes.
From start to finish the entire job only took about 2 months! At the time it seemed like forever, but looking back that's really not too bad.

May 20, 2004

Exterior Color Selections

When we first bought our house in 2000 it had some boxy, overgrown evergreen bushes in front of the porch. We removed them and planted a tree in the front yard, but other than that, this is pretty much what the house looked like:

In 2004 we decided to replace the porch, siding, roof, and windows. The first step was making lots and lots of decisions. We drove around taking pictures of houses we liked. We really liked this house's color scheme:

We liked this siding:

And this roof:

Next I created images of what our house would look like. Here's my drawing of our house's original color scheme:
This is one of the color schemes we were considering; the siding color was "Montery Sand".

This drawing is closest to all of the colors we finally decided on:
Roof: Weathered Wood, architectural style (Timberline)
Siding: Tuscan Clay (Charter Oak)
Trim: Natural Linen (Charter Oak)
Porch floor, steps, and railings: Oak Brown, semi-transparent (Cabot)
Porch posts, spindles, lattice, and trim around lattice: Ultra White, solid (Cabot)

May 16, 2004


When our house was originally built in 1927 the front porch had no support posts at all - it was just built right on the ground. When we bought the house in 2000 the porch was sagging in several places, and we had to block off two of the corners that weren't safe to stand on.

When we decided to replace the porch as part of our exterior remodeling, we ran into a few problems with the city zoning board, so our contractor had these detailed drawings made up for us to use in our variance request and, of course, for the carpenter.

Fortunately all it took was one call to a helpful city councilman to get the zoning issues resolved, and our carpenter was really talented and did a great job!

May 15, 2004


Not having a garage that we could store anything in for 4 years we'd been keeping all our yard stuff in the basement and hauling our old fashioned reel mower up and down the stairs every time we cut the grass.

Not knowing when we'd ever build a new garage we finally decided to buy a shed kit from Home Depot. Here's a picture of the materials from the kit. The shed's going to go in the very back of the yard in the left corner.
If my memory serves me correctly, this project wasn't too bad. Or maybe it was just nice that my mom came to babysit almost all weekend, and working on this project was a nice break for me. And I love projects with such an immediate and tangible result!

My sister and I ended up putting the roof on the shed while my husband was at work one day, and it felt like such an awesome accomplishment! I'm really happy with how it turned out, and the storage space is great. My husband is thrilled that we were finally able to get a gas-powered lawnmower!