The installation of the hardwood floor was completed yesterday. You can see the pictures here and if you notice in both pictures, just to the left of the newly installed floor is the old floor with somewhat of a yellow tint to it. Those old floors are being sanded today so when the new Swedish finish goes down, the floor in the middle of the living room will have the same look as the floor in the kitchen. We think it looks great now. There is more work on the floor today, but as soon as that is complete, other work will start and the final floor finish will go down at the very end.
The installation of the floor in the living room was completed today. Notice the Brazilian Cherry from around the red oak center. The red oak, actually is the same as the previously installed floor you can see at the left (bottom) edge of the image. Because the old floor still has its finish on it it has a yellowish, shiny cast. The next step is to sand away the finish from the previously installed floor so that when the new finish is put down, all of the red oak parts will appear the same. Mark mentioned (even though we think it is beautiful already) that there will be a much more striking appearance when the whole floor is finished. We are really looking forward to that.
The view below is the view from the entry to the house. Lorena and I both noted that it is a small room, but made much bigger because it is wide open to the dining room and kitchen. Well, that and the spectacular view out the windows to Mount Rainer.
Mark started in on replacing the kitchen window that looks out on a small, covered patio with a door. The window is at the opposite end of the kitchen from the windows that look at Mount Rainier. The reason for this is that we figured this patio would be a perfect place to put a gas grill. Lorena cooks on a gas grill all year long. The deck with the view at the back of the house is not currently covered. As the house is now, to get to the little patio you have to go through two doors–one into the laundry room and a second out onto the patio. With a glass door, we will not only be able to easily get from the kitchen to the cooking patio, but we will be able to see out their very well, too–at least that is the concept.
Yesterday, Mark brought in his electrician who removed most of the drywall in the kitchen to adjust and augment the electrical infrastructure. The found the control panel for the telephone wiring. Normally we would not be interested in that at all because we have not had a land line for over a decade. Sadly, though, cable internet is not available in our neighborhood. That means we need to get DSL because I have to have pretty fast internet to be able to do my work from home. In the past, DSL generally did not mean anything really great, but I have not used it for so long that I am not sure of it current capability. The company that provides it came out and checked it before we bought the house and assured me I can reliably get the needed speeds. The electrician will wire it so we can put a wireless router by the DSL modem and hardwire the upstairs for second router to give good wireless connectivity through the whole house.
Mark sent along another picture of the continuing electrical work, but also of the work that is being done on the floor in the living room. In this shot, about half of the underlayment is now in place. I understand the hardwood floor will start covering that later today or tomorrow morning. In the picture below you can see some of what someone standing at the kitchen sink will see. The best part, though, is to the left and out of the picture. It is the view of the city down the low with Mount Rainier rising above it. The new floor is scheduled to be installed and the finish removed from the rest of the hardwood floor that is already there followed by a good sanding of the whole thing. The Swedish finish will not go down until everything else is complete so we are probably about a month away from that.
Mark kicked off a lot more work today on the kitchen. He found a place to position the propane tank, roughed in the plumbing for the kitchen and got the hardwood floor guy going. Tomorrow, the electrician will start. I think there must be two phases of these things. My sense is that their is additional electrical and plumbing things to do after the cabinets are in and to prepare for the appliances. Mark said the final Swedish finish goes on the floor at the very end so the only thing that happens right now is the installation of the living room floor and the sanding that needs to be done. I am wondering when the window in this photo is removed and replaced with a door. All that, I think, has to be completed before the cabinets can be installed.
In the meantime, there was a wind storm in Centralia that blew over a tree that might or might not (maybe Bob and Gena have an opinion–they sent us the picture) on our property. The trees are dense enough there that probably most of the trees close to our property are somewhat protected.
Our friends Bob and Gena E. went over to the house yesterday to see how the work was going and reported that Mark cleaned up and left the place spotless (Thank you Mark, Bob and Gena!). I do not know whether it is a normal part of the process to put down a tape outline of where the island will sit, but it is very cool that Mark did it. He sent me these images. The image at the top left shows the placement of the cabinets that will hold the counter top. There is room for two stools between the two legs extending toward the bottom of the image and one or two more to the right of the right-most leg. The sink is planned for the angled cabinet on the left.
The red arc in the first image below shows the placement of the granite on top of the cabinets. The cabinet and sink placement of the previous kitchen only provided 7′ 6″ between the end of the cabinets on the wall and the island and the back wall of the house. That is important because that area is what passes for the houses dining room. It is a little non-traditional but features a spectacular view of the mountain. When all was said and done with the design Mark’s team put together, there was an additional foot and a half space between the end of the cabinets and the back of the house for a total of 9′ 0″ and a respectable width for a dining room.
You can also notice at the bottom of the last picture, there are some exposed joists. That is the area where the raised hardwood floor was removed. The hardwood floor is to be extended across the living room at the same level as the kitchen and dining room, but with a border of a different species of hardwood (darker) around what used to be the higher floor. This is to give it an appearance of separation. An additional benefit of a single level floor is that we can put a very long table that runs across the dining room and into the living room if we need one that long. We HAVE needed one that long in the past for Thanksgiving and other assorted get-togethers.
Here are three late arriving images of the demolition of the floor in the living room. I know, that is not technically the kitchen, but there was a trip risk going from the kitchen into the living room because of the step up and it is all one big open room and floor. The first picture is taken from the kitchen looking out toward the living room. The second image is taken from the entry, the kitchen being to the left. All the windows are at the back of the house with a view of Centralia and Mount Rainier behind that. The last picture is of über-contractor/designer/kitchen-king, Mark P. using the new kitchen for its intended purpose for the first time.
We were very excited that Mark P. made his way to Centralia today to start the kitchen remodel in our newly purchased (old) house. My brother, Doug, was up in Seattle so he stopped in to take a look and we scheduled him for a visit when he and his bud, Dave N., head up to Seattle for a Mariners game in July. That gives us a target date to get enough furniture together to receive some visitors! Here are the pictures Mark sent of how things are going. We are looking forward to meeting his partner in crime who, I am sure will show up in future pictures as the project progress. For reference, the image to the top left is how the kitchen looked before they started and a link where I discuss that start of the whole project. That is Mark P., our contractor (highly recommended–this is our second kitchen remodel with him–pop me an email if you want contact info).
The images below are the start of the demolition of the old kitchen. Actually we are taking out a raised hardwood floor to make it the same level as the kitchen and, particularly so that people will not trip when they are in the house. I will post more of that later as the remodel moves along.
The kitchen is GONE!!!
Mark P., our contractor, said there are only a few things missing in this drawing. The microwave will be above the double oven, the range top is not drawn in and a few other details that we have actually already settled. One thing that is cool is that the curve at the bottom of the island is the line the granite will follow. The big challenge now is when we can get started and it depends on resources–ours, Mark’s and his subs. The next thing we we need to figure out is lighting and granite. We have finished with the cabinets (hickory with a pecan stain and handles, not knobs or pulls).