I can’t believe a month and some has flown by.  We are getting settled and starting to do some projects we like to do, rather than have to do. I have a ton of furniture I am repainting in the garage (refinishing is one of my hobbies) but cant seem to get things finished!  We have not had that many weekends though, we had my daughter’s graduation from college, prom,  Memorial Day, my dear mother-in-law fell and was in the hospital, where she suffered terribly for two weeks before passing away.  It was a sad time for everyone she was 86 and such a sweet lady. She really wanted to make my son’s high school graduation but didn’t make it.  Also sad that she never had a chance to see the house.  She followed the blog, and loved reading as much as me, we shared many book recommendations together.  She will be very missed.

My front door is solid wood and painted ugly white of course.  So I decided to strip it and refinish it.  Cant wait to see the final product.

Can you believe my Home Depot windows are still not finished since February when we ordered them?  I am at my wits end.  The hardware for about 6 windows was not included in the boxes and I am waiting and waiting on them.  How hard is it for them to call Anderson and have them shipped?  I doubt the hardware was special order they probably have them laying around somewhere.  I am tired of calling and I wish I had not finished paying the final bill, but I had to since I was trying for a mortgage and didn’t want that showing up on my credit. (Update, the parts came in and I realized for the two awning windows we ordered the hardware is completely different.  I had to call Anderson myself and find the part number then call Depot and tell them what to order.)

Which reminds me, we just finalized our mortgage on June 10!  Thanks to Mea Danigelis of Mclean Mortage (mdanigelis@mcleanmortgage.com)! Now we are able to go on with the renovation of the rest of the house. We are starting to call contractors now and get their ideas and plan to start the minute my kids roll out the door for college in August.  For now, we are taking a break on big stuff and getting organized in our apartment.

The outside has taken alot of taming.  We cant help but thank the Lord we started in middle of winter and chopped everything away from the house.  However, the weeds are popping up again and we cannot control it!  My mom came to help pull up beds and the old irrigation drip system that is all over the outside and left with an awful case of either poison ivy, sumac or poison oak, hard to tell we have everything!  I have never had any of that in my life and just got it and it is not fun at all. SO I hired Baileys Landscape to just come in and rototill the beds and take away about 6 inches of the dirt and put new down, he said that is the only way to get it all out the roots are so bad and invasive.  He also supplied me with this heavy duty weed killer that works in 7 hours to spray but only contractors can buy.  The warnings on the label are pretty severe.  We planted new plants and mulched and at least got things under control.  I realized I have two gorgeous lilac bushes, tiny irises and peonies too.  And a ton of daffodils.  So not all bad.

My two snakes off the back deck have disappeared, kinda sad.  They were probably mad at all the contractors around them.  But we have seen foxes, turkeys and their babies, turtles, of course deer and rabbits.  I think my cat can’t keep up so has given up.  At least he sticks around now and doesn’t leave.  We are thinking of getting him a new kitten to help hunt.  I have not seen any mice so that is a blessing.

We are starting on the first bay of the garage that has the apartment staircase and all the pump equipment.  I want to put a doggy wash area in and tile the whole room since it will never fit a car even though it has a garage door.  There is shelving in place all along the room due to the Amway salesman that lived here before.  I am going to have a painter spray the whole thing.  We also will start on Justin’s room in the main house.  He will gut that himself after beach week. The night of prom he had people over and I didn’t mind at all what happened in the main house since it’s already gross.  We didn’t even hear them all night but I hear they stayed up all night.  He dug a nice fire pit way out back to hang out.  Now friends are telling me we should have a pre-renovation party.  I just might plan that maybe in August.  I will have to get a toilet in the main house powder room first!

We still have issues with the house that drive me insane.  Like for instance the front hall closet just leaked again due to the massive rain storm we had, the roof line is funky and we have to come up with some solution.  The hose bib on the far side of the house didn’t work.  My plumber went into the creepy crawl space and found it had been cut off and disconnected.  And all the copper pipes are hung by some fastener that is supposed to be rust free and guess what?  They are rusted and have to be replaced.  My floor is still uneven in the main house and I have to find someone to figure out why and fix it.   My new fan in the apartment living room has never worked right.  I can’t get it to program.  I ordered a new one and that one didn’t program either!  The guy from Fanimation is going to install it in his house, program it to see if it works, then take it down and send to me.  Ha.  I just got it today.  Gotta call the electrician now… Which reminds me we have two massive brass light fixtures that I cannot figure out how to get on with what switches. Sometimes they work. They are hanging in the big tile room.  I cant wait to get rid of them if you know of someone who might want them let me know!

However, the outside is amazing.  The sunsets are incredible and it’s so peaceful and usually breezy up here on the mountain.   We have a sweet horse living down the street we visit every night.  Also, no red clay!  Apparently in developments the builder usually skims off the good dirt and sells it and then builds on the crappy dirt. The dirt up here is amazing  and we are even thinking of leasing a few acres to a winery to plant grapes.  I have a garden behind the chain link fence that is doing pretty well.  The neighbors laugh because I have them in raised beds they say that is no garden in their eyes.  Oh well, I am just trying out stuff to see what sticks.  Everyone have a great summer if I don’t check in until August.  If you want to stop by and see the place send me a note!  I get a kick out of people that come up to me and really enjoy this blog.  It encourages me, it really does.  In a year or so I am going to go back and read everything and tell you if it all was worth it.  Right now, I am still on the fence.



My chain link fence garden


brass chandelier in great room (got 2 of them!)


different sunset every night…


new outside lights




4 thoughts on “A month later…

  1. kvhauptman

    Jen, you amaze me with your tenacity with the problems that are hard to solve. You have the best attitude. I wish you could have help from HGTV. Wouldn’t that be nice?


    1. jenfoxrealestate Post author

      Thanks Kim. I try to keep a good attitude but it is hard, then I remember my blessings and pray it away! I used to think HGTV might be nice but they probably would be a pain in the neck hanging around! and telling me what to do! ha



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