A week of renovating our 1950’s ranch

Measure twice cut once, that's the rule
Working Vacation

We finally got to the point where Jim just couldn’t continue doing work in the house piece piece after work. So he took the whole week off, and we’re getting so much done. Here’s some pictures of our progress so far…

Once this opening is mudded, painted and trimmed out, you’ll never be able to tell it wasn’t always open this way. The flow of the house is so much better, and there is so much light now. If Jim hadn’t been working up in the corner, he wouldn’t have even needed the light on.
Before During and After
The dining room is so different now. Jim drywalled it, and I’ll be mudding it soon.
I listed our cabinets for sale on Craigslist with the provision that whoever bought them had to remove them. The guy who bought them and his crew worked really hard and were very careful not to damage our walls. I can’t tell you how much we appreciated that. 
Gutted kitchen
The kitchen cabinets have been removed. It looks like a mess now, but it’s just the first step.
We would have completely destroyed them if we had tried to remove them. We had no idea they would be so hard to remove, and we’re really glad someone else took them out. Although, Jim did jump in to help when they needed some extra hands. 
After the cabinets were gone, Jim set about removing the linoleum flooring. He had to be careful, because there is asbestos tile under the luan. It’s perfectly safe to leave the asbestos tile in place and put new flooring right over top of it, so that’s what we’re going to do. 
Removing the kitchen floor
Jim carefully removing the linoleum and luan from the floor.
Once the linoleum was gone, we started removing hundreds of staples, but soon realized that pounding them in with a hammer was much easier and faster–not to mention safer, since some of the asbestos tiles were chipping when we were pulling the staples. 
Don’t you love the quintessential 1950s tile floor? I’m kind of glad the tiles are staying, even if they’re going to get covered up, because it feels like we’re preserving some of the house’s history.
With the new opening between the living room and dining room, this opening was unnecessary, so Jim framed it in and drywalled it. Our electrician roughed for power and cable, since this is the corner where our TV will be going.
Closing the wall
Closing in the opening to the hallway. The living room side is on the left and the hallway side is on the right.
Here you can see that former opening from the hallway. This picture was actually taken while standing in our bathroom. That’s another reason I’m glad we closed off this opening. Before, if the bathroom door was left open, you could see the toilet if you were sitting in the living room…not the most beautiful view, if you know what I mean.
Gotta love a man with tools!! I can’t help it, he looks so darned sexy with his toolbelt. Here Jim is measuring to put up the drywall on the dining room side of the new opening. This took much longer than we expected, because, well, it’s an old house and nothing is level, straight, or plumb. 
Jim measuring for drywall
Measure once, cut twice… err…. switch that. Measure twice, cut once.
I would have more pictures, but my Fibromyalgia decided to flare up yesterday afternoon, so Jim sent me home and told me to stay home and rest today. I am so blessed to have a husband who cares so much about my health. I have to admit that I’ve felt rather guilty staying home today when I know he’s over there working so hard. 
Don’t worry.  I’ll be back at it very soon, and I’ll share more pictures as we go along.
If you like following along with our renovation, please share this post with your friends on Facebook, Twitter and other sites. Thanks! 

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Loribeth Clark
8 years ago

Thanks! We haven't gotten as far as we hoped this week, but we have gotten a lot done. We're hoping to really knock out the floors today.

Kate Marino
8 years ago

It looks amazing so far! You have gotten so much done.