The Renovations Begin!

Monday, August 19, 2013

So these last few days have been a tangled web of hauling and moving and listing and sweating and plain ole exhaustion. I can't imagine what the boys must be feeling! I'm exhausted and I haven't done nearly as much work as they have - with the exception of growing a human being... (top that!). We've been so impressed with the immense work that has been completed to far - mostly destruction. Here's a rundown of what's happened so far! 

We made the last leg of the voyage (35 miles) and met our realtor here at the house for our final walk through. Then we headed over to sign the ginormous stack of papers that served as the final hoop to becoming home owners!
Notice the THREE cups of Starbucks for two people. I couldn't decide between hot & cold so my realtor convinced me that being pregnant meant I get both. I like her.
New Homeowners! 
Immediately after the signing, we got to work! I actually headed to Brittany's to help prepare for Eli's birthday party! Even though it was crazy timing, being around family is EXACTLY the reason we moved here. And this sweet guy is TOTALLY worth it! 
Eli at his Jake & The Neverland Pirates themed 3rd birthday party!
While I played helpful auntie, Brian and DJ headed over to the house immediately. We had a cleaning crew come in for almost FOUR hours. They slaved to make the house less gross. That afternoon we also had a couple of inspections and bids scheduled. During all of this, the boys got to work making lists of supplies for the next couple of days and made trip #1 to Lowes.

That night we had every intention of grocery shopping, getting more supplies at Lowes, and taking another trip to the house. Instead, overcome with exhaustion, we slept.

We got started bright and early! Brian's parents, Uncle Darrell, and my brother DJ all came over for a full day of hard work. We started by unloading the trucks into the house. That took 4 hours! Of course we aren't loading into the appropriate rooms yet, because none of them are prepared for permanent habilitation. Instead, our garage and front room have turned into an overwhelming world of storage, and our living room has become the masterbedroom/makeshift living room. 

The rest of the day was spent cleaning gutters, checking the roof, tearing our all of the carpet in the entire house, gutting a bathroom, cleaning out the fridge, blowing off the back deck, and cleaning sub floors. 
Dad gutting stairs.
Dining Room. Gross.
DJ Gutting the hall

Eventual office.
Eventual Guest Bedroom
Guest Bathroom 
Guest Bathroom

Saturday night, we attempted to make a trip #2 to Lowes. It was MISERABLE. We spent an hour and a half wandering Lowes, having NO CLUE what type of anything to purchase and completely unable to get help from one of their shining star employees (that was sarcasm, if you missed it. I was cursing them). Apparently Saturday night is not the time to go to Lowes. So, we surrendered and left, defeated.

Sunday morning we were ready to go again! After breakfast at Ihop, we hopped around town to a few appliance stores. We're in the market for ALL NEW kitchen appliances and one lucky person is going to get our business! Later, we returned to Lowes for visit #3. This time, we came armed with my little brother. Take that, Lowes! This trip, Lowes redeemed themselves. Their staff was much more on their game this morning. It was a good thing, too, because 3 and a half hours later, we left with FOUR carts of goodness. Luckily, the vanity and sink were on backorder, or it wouldn't have all fit into the truck!

Also, to add a little twist and a few extra minutes to the already exhausting trip, our credit card was declined after the lady took the time to ring all of this up! Of course we had the money in our checking account (we just wanted the points on our card), but it was annoying! Later we found out that the credit card company had flagged the purchase as "suspicious." I guess that's appropriate. :)

More work, more worker men, more deliveries, more gutting, more exhaustion. We (and by "we" I mean Brian) also started the rehab process on the basement mold issues. He sealed himself in and is removing all of the carpet and treating the area for mold. Those are my favorite pics. He looks like one of the guys from Monster's Inc... ya know, when they're afraid the humans have contaminated them?


Friday, August 16, 2013

Today we made the #bigmove from East Tennessee to the St. Louis area! I considered live tweeting, but since I was driving, I figured I better refrain. :) It was a fairly perfect day for a move. We were blessed with a ton of help packing, great weather, and no major setbacks. Here's my live tweet version of today's events!

2am -  After about 8 hours of laboring, we close up the truck for the night!

7:30a - Brian is up and working #workerbee

9:30a - I finally come to. We start the day with a prayer for guidance and safety. #Amen

11:00a - Time to close up the truck! Josh comes over to see us off! Actually, he came over to see Brian attempt to get out of our incredibly steep driveway in this 26 foot truck. #goodfriend

11:10a - On his first attempt, Brian gets the truck out of the driveway without taking out the mailbox or getting completely stuck in the concrete. The yard and the street have seen better days. #oops #beastofatruck

11:22a - Brian and Josh load the Mazda onto the trailer... They looked pretty good until I hear Brian ask, "Any idea what those chains are for?"

12p. And we're off!! Brian is driving the 26 foot Penske and pulling my Mazda. I'm driving Brian's Ford F150 and pulling a 12ft cargo trailer. Even with everything packed to the brim, we still had to leave stuff behind. #MegaCaravan

12:04p - Four minutes in! We were making such great progress we decided to stop for Starbucks and snacks. #priorities #roadtripfeul

12:22p - on the road again! #forrealthistime

1:11p - It's time to enter the interstate. I attempted my first lane change and learned quickly not to whip anything! I definitely changed too fast and was waggin' that trailer tail like a happy puppy. #lessonlearned

1:12 Brian's first attempt at taking out another vehicle. #Power trip.

1:17. Have to pee. #pregnancy #roadtrip

1:18p - We determine 55 mph is our top speed. Gonna be a long 515 miles. #secondthoughts

1:23. Realize that after 10 years I'm still awed by the beatify of East TN. What a blessing. I'm gonna miss this place. I get a little ready eyes. Then I suck it up. #sentimental #nocrying

1.49p - Tn hills = 40mph. 463 miles to go.

2:00. I crack open my second water bottle. Not the brightest move I've ever made. #pregnancy

2:50. First stop. I step out of the truck onto gravel and slide to my rear, hitting both truck steps on the way down. My butt hurts. #oops

6:58p - The roads are flattening out. I'm falling asleep. 213 miles to go. #roadtrip 

9:55p - Forget sheep. I'm counting miles and dozing right off.  Usually by now I'd be fast asleep in the passenger seat. Cars put me to sleep. Now I'm not allowed and I'm craving my bed. Hurting head to toe. Approaching 10 hours on the road. 56 miles left. #needsleepnow #bigmove

10:11p - We discuss skipping the house closing to go get massages. #movingpains

10:22p - Brian declares, "15 miles!" I praise The Lord. The end is near. #almosthome

10:50.p - We pull in the driveway. I consider sleeping there. #almosthome

Tonight we stay at Brian's parents'.  Tomorrow we head another 50 minutes West to St. Charles!

Zoom Zoom!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

In just TWO days, we will pull out of our driveway and officially leave our East Tennessee home (the state at least - we sold our house and moved into temp housing 7 months ago). Yipes! It's crazy to think that I (Denise) have lived in East TN for ten years now (to the month, exactly). That's my entire adult life! We've spent the last week getting together and saying final farewells to our friends here and we're ready (kinda, not really) to head out early Thursday morning!

If you read this blog, you know the house is in need of a LOT of TLC. The next three weeks should be nothing less than insane and exhausting. Brian and I plan to camp at DJ & Brittany's house for the first few days while the mold (yeah. mold.) situation is evaluated and taken care of. Then we will transition to the new house where we plan to camp on the living room for for the next three weeks! Don't worry - this pregnant lady will be plenty comfortable (well - as comfortable as 26 weeks can be). We'll be throwing my bff tempurpedic mattress down for one high class slumber party. In the meantime, we have a rigorous itinerary in place to get most of the upstairs remodeled over the course of the next three weeks. We can only praise God for the insane amount of help lined up for the next few weeks. Our friends and family are pooling together (and even traveling from out of town!) to help get the place livable! Keep up with us on this blog to see postings of before and after pictures and a regular update on the insanity!

As crazy as this all sounds, we are VERY excited about this project. We know it will be a lot of hard work, but we're always up for a new adventure! And we're sure we will appreciate the final project even more knowing the time and energy that went into every detail! This week we picked up our first major purchase for the renovation - new floors! We found these porcelain tiles at a FABULOUS price at a salvage yard in Knoxville. Here's to an exciting start! 

Charcoal Porcelain for two bathrooms and white porcelain for the mudroom.

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don't resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” 

― Lao Tzu

Baby Shower #1!

Saturday, August 3, 2013

For a girl who loves to be the center of attention, I sure was intimidated to attend my first baby shower today. I have no clue what I'm doing. I'm surely not cut out to be a mom. And is this whole baby situation REALLY happening? According to the explosion of diapers and miniature people clothing in my living room, the answer to that is a resounding YES!

The baby shower was AMAZING. Brian and I are blown away by the love shown through this sweet afternoon of well wishes and baby gifts. We are so grateful to Rachel, Katie, and Jennifer for laboring to create such a beautiful event and to all of our friends in the area (and especially those who traveled in!) who attended and brought so many necessary items for Baby Beckett!

One shower down, two more to go! I think we're well on our way to be as prepared as possible for the newest addition to this blessed family. 

Sweet friends Katie, Ashley, and Lynette. Enjoying Katie's YUMMY food. Rachel was in charge of the organization and beautiful decor.

Church & Kentucky Friends

Jennifer had some very cute games lined up! Here we're playing The Price is Right...
I have no clue what I'm doing. The winner of this game was a mother of FIVE! Go Tammy!

I'm obviously thrilled with this outfit. SO CUTE!

LOVE the Kentucky diaper cake by Savannah Westerfield! It was sad seeing it come apart to pack it!

We were given a couple homemade blankets. I am so impressed with the talent and hand work! 

That's my "aaawwwwww" face.

"Sometimes when I open my mouth, my mother comes out."
- Anonymous, Some eCards
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