Thursday, August 30, 2012

Drywall, granite and kitchen cabinets

Another visit to the house revealed drywall is hung upstairs and a big shipment of kitchen cabinets has arrived!  Photos below are from Monday evening.  Tuesday we had our granite meeting with the countertop people.  I wasn't sure what to expect.  I guess I thought they'd have a few slabs from different sources and we could pick which shade of Uba Tuba they had.  They seemed to be a smaller outfit.  They only had 2 slabs of Uba Tuba, both from the same source so they looked identical.  Turns out they both have my name on it.  The sales rep there went over what the seams would look like, talked about pitting and fissures that naturally occur in stone and showed what the reveal would look like where the under mount sink is. 

They didn't drywall the loft as of Monday evening.  You're looking at the backside of the kids' bathroom and our closet.

Our room looking towards the door into the closet.

Boxes and boxes of kitchen cabinets...Andover Maple Spice

This little piece of granite.  Not sure where it goes.  The main slabs were at the shop not yet cut as of Tuesday night.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Delayed update

So it's been a while since I've updated what's going on.  It's been a busy, stressful and emotional time lately.  We fully moved out of our house over the weekend and now living with the in-laws until the new house is done.  Our old house closed yesterday, so there's some other person living there now, which is such a weird feeling.  I guess technically we're now homeless, no place to call our own.  I'm very grateful my in-laws took us in for 6 weeks and disrupting their lives, but at the same time, it's such a weird feeling, like you're a guest in the place you live.  So, we had to say goodbye to the first place we had together as ours, bought the house at the age of 22 right out of college.  We had to say goodbye to the only home our children ever knew.  My younger son burst into tears the final time we left and said goodbye.

On top of that, during all of this, there were a bunch of layoffs at work, including my work partner and best friend.  I now have to do the job of two people, the emotions of her losing her job, worrying about how she'll support her family and children, the feeling of rejection.

So, anyways, onto the house.  There hasn't been much progress since the pre-drywall walkthrough.  They finished insulating and the ductwork and furnace have been installed.  I did remember to take a couple pictures.  Remember the exterior lights fiasco from my last post?  Here are pictures:
See the light to the left?  That's supposed to be there.  See the light to the right?  That was supposed to go at the front door.  Freebee for me!

See the lack of a light?  The electrician will return to add it.
 Here's an update on the interior:
Family room.  Fireplace is behind the cardboard.

Looking into the kitchen/morning room

Friday, August 17, 2012

Check pre-drywall meeting off the list...and a free light

Had my pre-drywall meeting yesterday.  Overall, it went well.  My PM walked through all the energy star features, what switch controls what, etc.  There were a few things that need to be changed.  Here's what was found:

-No keyless light in the attic.  The plans call for it, but wasn't installed.  Special shout out to CHARISSA for finding that and posting in her blog, it's the only reason I was looking for it, otherwise I would have overlooked it.
-The flex duct from the return air main upstairs is hung from the attic trusses with straps.  The final strap before it turns down into the chase downstairs is right against the bend in the flex duct and its somewhat pinched.  I asked the strap be moved over to give it a nice smooth radius bend to not choke airflow.  Not having enough return air upstairs would cause issues.
-The ceiling fan in the morning room has two switches, one for lights, one for fan rotation.  Only one switch was wired up to the fan.
- I asked the cable location in the living room be moved over about 4 feet to jive with my anticipated furniture layout.  All other rooms looked good.
-We are supposed to have one exterior light by the front door and one exterior light by the sliding glass door off the morning room.  Well, the electrician put them both by the morning room sliding door, one on either side.  It looks awesome and I like it, but I'd really like a front light too.  My awesome PM is giving me a freebee.  The mistake will stay and a light will be installed at the front door.  Yippee!

Some advice going through the process:
- Be sure your kitchen island/peninsula is drawn out on the floor so the electrician knows where to hang pendant lights.  It's hard for them to know exactly without the island there, and it also helps you visualize they're where you want them to be.  My awesome PM took it upon himself to do this and I'm very thankful he did.
-If you want under cabinet lights, pay for the Ryan Homes option to add this.  I first balked at the $500 price and was going to add them myself after moving in.  Well, after you pay the $175 for the additional outlet, buy the lights, you're only about $100-150 away from RH's price.  Trying to do it yourself means all wiring under the cabinet, drilling holes through the cabinet wall to get to the outlet behind the microwave.  Overall, an ugly install and not much savings.  This is one of the few options that is worth it for RH to do.
-Outlets near a corner, in particular I'm thinking in the master bath over the vanity, be sure your electrician adds a block or two of 2x4 so that the outlet box isnt close to the corner of the room.  If it were placed on the 2x4 of the framed wall, when the drywall finisher goes in to do the corner he's going to have a tough time sanding it right and it'll look sloppy.

Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures of everything.  Next time I'm in I will.
Schedule: next up is insulation, then next week start drywall.  Drywall from start to finish should be an 8 day process.  Furnace goes in next week.  Siding starts about halfway through drywall.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Prepping for the predrywall meeting in two days

Pre-drywall is scheduled for 7:30 on Thursday morning, so tonight we went to the house to go over everything to be totally ready.  Forgot the camera, unfortunately.  I looked over locations of outlets, switches, cable, etc.  I'm thinking I'm going to ask for the cable in the living room moved over a few feet to fit with our planned furniture layout.  All others look pretty good.  I checked over wiring to be sure the sheathing wasn't torn while pulling through studs, all looked good.  I checked to be sure all the ductwork was sealed properly between fittings, again all looked good.  Looked to be sure the fittings on the PVC piping had a good amount of PVC cement, again looked good.  The flex exhaust off the one bathroom fan upstairs is pitched kinda awkward.  It takes a sharp turn up, then hangs off a strap under the roof truss, then heads outdoors.  My thought is because the attic space is cold, the air in the flex duct will get cold, the moisture in the air from the shower will condense, and because of the sharp pitch up will drip back down once the fan is off.  I'm going to see if they can run it flatter along the ceilling rather than how they have it now.  I'll try to take a picture next time I'm there.  If anyone else ran into odd things for their pre-drywall meeting and has any advice I'm all ears.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Was denied putting in my own path to pull cable

I remember reading back a suggestion from another blogger, Sgt. Rich I believe, to run a blue flex conduit from the basement to the attic before drywalling so that you have a path to pull wiring in the future.  I thought that was an awesome suggestion.   My thought was to pull ethernet cable from the computer upstairs down to the computer in the basement.  Asked my PM today and was denied.  Got the company line "Ah man, I wish I could but can't because of inspection and liability issues blah blah blah."  I bet RH would be more than happy to charge me $500 to do it for me lol.  Ah well, a bit of a bummer, but not the end of the word.

I have 6 more days until the big move out of my current house...and the dreaded 6-7 weeks living with the in-laws until the house is finished.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Building update and met the neighbors

Latest update: all hvac, plumbing, electrical and roofing is done.  I asked for pendant lights over the kitchen island independently switched, but doesn't look like they're switched separately.  Not the end of the world I guess.  Looking at it now, it would be switch overkill on the wall.

We met our new next door neighbors today.  They have one kid, a 9 year old boy.  It's amazing news and perfect for our 9 and 10 year old boys!

Few update pictures included:

Recessed and pendant lights in the kitchen

I love the garage door, the small details make it

Not pleased with the giant return air grille in the kitchen, but knew it would be there from day one

Monday, August 6, 2012

Shopping for light fixtures

So everytime I take a trip to Lowes or Home Depot I have to stop by the lighting department.  I think I found the pendants I want for over the kitchen island.  What do you think?

I'm in the air about what to do in the morning room.  Here are a few ideas:

Framing complete

It only took three days, but the entire house is framed, all windows in, sliding glass door in, front door in, garage door in.  So of course, over the weekened we popped in again and took a few pictures.  This week should be putting on the roof and I'm not sure what else.  I guess I'll see what they do with the houses across the street that are a few days ahead of me.
Woops, took the pic with the garage door part open.  The best feature are the windows on top.  Oh well, next time.

View from the back.  Just imaginging the awesome patio next spring.

Yeah, I don't even remember where this was taking from.  Its the upstairs somewhere.

From the kitchen looking into the family room

Friday, August 3, 2012

Second day, second floor

Dropped by the house last night after day two of framing.  They have the second floor complete now, minus the roof trusses.  They also installed all the windows.  Man do these guys fly!  They should be completely done framing today.  It was awesome to go in and actually start to visualize our new home.  Ok, here's where the refrigerator is, here's where we'll be sitting on the couch watching tv, etc. 
Wrapped like a baked potato

Still love this awesome view from the yard.  Can't wait to sit in the morning room sipping coffee looking out at this everyday

Looking past the powder room into the family room.  One of the workers left his banana peel in the bathroom....odd place to choose for lunch.

Stairway to heaven?

Thursday, August 2, 2012

First floor framed

Framing has begun.  Got the text from my PM yesterday, so we had to make a trip out to check it out.  It actually looks like a house.  Can start to visualize, ok the couch will be here, will be sitting here at breakfast, etc.
Look at this amazing view out the morning room sliding doors