Monday, September 7, 2009

The Renovation and What I Ate

Last February, Mike and I purchased a cabin in the mountains.  We had been looking for a getaway for about 5 months or so, and had put offers in on two others before we stumbled upon this place.  It had been on the market for a while, and was almost sold.  Through a chance of fate it fell out of escrow and became available on the day we first looked at it.
While it had all the things we were looking for...seems remote, but can get essentials within a few miles, lots of trees, enough room for us to have guests and a lot large so we can't see what our neighbors are eating for dinner.. also had things we weren't so excited about....the home had been empty for 3 1/2 years. The owner had passed away and the home sat in probate.  With time comes decay and there was quite a bit of it here.  Animals and vermin had found a great shelter for the winter and the place was crawling with, well...creepy crawlees.  Because we had written two offers before, on two other homes, we were sort of jaded.  Both places we had offered on previously had decided not to sell in the middle of the process. So, we thought, let's low-ball and see what happens.  Our real estate agent was really great and didn't give us the, oh we don't want to offend story. She said, lets make an offer you are comfortable with and see what happens.  And so we did.
Apparently so did someone else...and the offers were close....
...and we were dealing with a bank, rather than individuals with emotional attachment... it became a very civilized process...make another offer and we will make a decision.
We were at Disneyland eating corndogs when we got the call.  So we made another offer...came up a bit on the dollars, removed a few throw-away items....
...and we got the house.  oh happy day!

cabin in winter

It is now September, and I am happy to report there isn't snow on the ground. And this is what the cabin looks like today

cabin in summer
There is a lot of work that needs to be done on our very own "possum lodge"--mike has named it this, in deference to Red Green.  I go along with it because thats what someone who can't think of a better name does.  All I could come up with was pit, big mess, too many mice, water damage, smelly-smelly.
see what i mean? Makes possum lodge sound genius.
The first thing we did after buying the place was make a list of all the projects and prioritized them.  We haven't really stuck to that...but we are making good progress.  Did I mention that I am more of a pointer than a pick up the hammer kind of gal?  Or should I say, I used to be more of a pointer.  That wasn't gonna fly in this particular instance.  And, I must say, working on something like this--together as a couple--is really fun.  Really, really fun.  We are building a home together; literally and figuratively.

Our first priority was the kitchen.  It turned out to be a real mess.  The walls had been water-logged at some point, so much of the drywall had to be replaced.  That which was not drywall, had this really ugly and impossible fake brick glued to it.  I had to chisel it off, brick by brick, which took an entire day.
The countertop practically disintigrated in our hands...and my favorite part---there was a mountain of acorns stored in the walls.
Thankfully our friend Jed had offered his assistance in helping us renovate.  Between him and mike, they could figure out just about anything.

I obviously couldn't cook in this we ate out quite a bit.
We (the three of us) probably tried everything on the menu of our local eatery.  We spent a lot of time at the Original Cottage in Rim Forest.  It's nothing to look at, but the food is just what you would expect--homey and big portions.  It's a funny place...breakfast is just what you want, great big pancakes, gooey maple dripped waffles, 6 egg omelets with crispy cottage fries. The lunch menu is a bit ecclectic..a mixture of diner type food with a large array of mexican items.  Dinner is italian and only italian.  Their pizza is good--the rest is a bit buca di beppo-ish.  They make a really great dinner roll and wonderful garlic knots. The food is genuinely good, and I would know..I owe my last 5 lbs to it.
Until we got the kitchen up and running...this was our kitchen..for 3 square.
Our kitchen is basically done.  We have a few bits and bobs to do...a bit of trim, a tile backsplash, hardware on the drawers...but it's functional and it is really cute.  I love it!



and after

The walls are creampuff and the cabinets are cherry bomb
...and I can't believe I don't have a picture of the floors because they are amazing...but I have a video and as soon as I figure out how to edit it and get it on here I will.
u-tube video of the kitchen with a bonus feature (my snide remarks)
We have lots of work still to do, and I will keep posting on our progress.  


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