Saturday, February 28, 2015

Let the Countdown begin!

I know its a little cheesy- but I just added a countdown clock to the blog.  Its really simple and unobtrusive but it does make it feel like Christmas.  And not the adult Christmas.  I am talking about the kid Christmas where you could barely go to sleep thinking about all the goodies that could possibly be under the tree.  THAT'S the feeling I am going for.

Are you adding a countdown clock?

Friday, February 27, 2015

Where do I start?

My PM called today to tell me the progress and confirm my walk through next Thursday and let me know the progress of the house.   Apparently not one company in the area is mixing asphalt and I need asphalt to have my driveway repaired.  So what do we do- keep begging asphalt companies to mix away.

Next my driveway apron needs to be moved over 2-3 feet but concrete cant be poured for it until its a little warmer, which happens to be this coming Wednesday where its predicted to be nice toasty 55 degrees.  Yes I know that was a run on sentence.

I also got a chance to question the staining of my steps and that loose board of my portico.  Yes the steps and banisters was touched up but I can critique them again on Thursday.  As for the portico he will take another look it and have it repaired- still no word on the missing railings.

Last piece of information- we are totally locked out!  The locks have been switched to the fancy bronze hardware and the only 2 people who have the key are my PM and the settlement company.

Right after speaking to our PM, our loan officer called.  We need to fulfill the remainder of our conditions (W2s, bank statements and taxes) because we are scheduled to close on March 12th.  SAY WHAT?  We had been kept in the dark for so long we had no clue that the we actually had a date.   What about the appraisal?  That was completed in January.  Why didn't we get a copy of it?  Because underwriting gets to see it first and nothing will be turned over to them until the rest of the conditions are met.  Yikes!

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

I just had to

I went back to visiting the house before work.  I had to; it was driving me nuts not to see it in person.
I immediately noticed that my front door now has color

The color is better than I thought it would be- I mean really those tiny swatches they give you leaves much to be desired.  

I also noticed that my portico is still missing but my foyer window has been trimmed out.  Not quite sure if I like the extra trim

I would have been happy with just a glance from the outside until something caught my eye as I was heading back to the car

Why is that board loose?  If you look closely at the first pic I posted you will noticed that the right side is nice and flush but the left side.......  I went back through my pic gallery and right there on February 7th, the exact same thing.  So this says to me a couple of things:  glad I am hiring an inspector because I definitely glossed over that one AND when the hell are they going to notice and fix that??   Scrolling even further back, this board wasn't as bad prior to installing the columns but pic after pic it has gotten progressively worse. What are we waiting on? My missing portico?  And to think I was slyly chided about visiting the house so much.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Lovesick Homesick

I have been trying to occupy myself until I get a chance to see my home again.  I didn't get an opportunity this past weekend as the boys activities completely overtook the entire family.  I have taken to reading my own blog and looking forlornly at pictures of the house that I took.   Yes folks- I am lovesick homesick and its bad.  We have been waiting for this moment for so long and now that's its so close- it seems even farther away! *sigh

To keep myself busy I have been working to fulfill my Etsy orders- which seem to be flowing better this month than the previous months- when I wanted to save more cash!  In any case- I have received a few large orders plus some smaller ones which has sufficiently kept me busy.  Okay not quite- I also started researching perfume making again.  But that process is still way into the future as I will be developing and testing blends for a bit.

The other thing I have been doing is searching artistic pieces- paintings and sculptures.  I originally started on Etsy- looking for one of a kind pieces and generally found one of a kind prices!  Starving artist my foot!  If I really liked the piece it was either from another country ( I want made in the USA)  or it exceeded my personal limit of $200.  That being said I did find a few items.

I then amused myself and took a gander at Amazon.  Surprisingly enough- they do have a fine art section but the prices there were even higher than Etsy.   Lowering my expectations, I decided to look at reprints/ copies on stretched canvas and found a few items that look pretty decent
What did you do to kill time until you got your keys? Holding off on doing a lot of shopping right now but oh how I want to pull out that plastic! 

Friday, February 20, 2015

Plank Tables and Mailboxes 2

I have found few more vinyl decal that I think might be just the thing- fancy and it clearly shows the address

I think I like the first one better, less distraction.  This company offers the decals in different colors but I will probably just pick white to keep it clean and simple.  These were found on Etsy as well.   My husband may think I am off my rocker for this one.

I am home sick today (insert hiss and boo here) and so I have been watching  ton of  HGTV.  I think I want a plank table now for the morning room.  I had originally said distressed but I love the rich hues and tones of a table like this

Or this
Still not sure of the seating for the tables- it must be durable and easy to clean to withstand my boys and their friends.   I am really not a fan of the bench seating that seems to popular pairing with these tables.

Thursday, February 19, 2015


If you didn't know by now- I am a little excited that RH has "planted" my mailbox.

But I also noted that numbers are located on the garage only and not on the mailbox.  I had noticed one of my neighbors had lovely stenciled lettering on the side of their mailbox and had thought that RH homes provides this for ALL mailboxes.  I was wrong.  I knew I was wrong as I took a closer inspection of the mailboxes in my neighborhood and noticed that a few of them had that blocky stick on numbers you get from Home Depot and not the pretty calligraphy invested in by my neighbor.   
In a quest to do something just as pretty as my neighbor  I started searching Pintrest boards and quickly found what I needed on my favorite handmade site, Etsy. 

Here are a few of my finds.   Which one would you vote for?
All of these are from one company back40life.  I like the styles and I like the fact that I can get 2 sides for $15.   In addition I am impressed with the nearly 12K sales, which for me says that they are doing something right.  I will continue to look but I doubt I will find something better.  

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Locked Up!

I am so glad I geared myself to ask permission to see my home whenever I stop by because today I HAD to get the key!  That's right folks, my house is locked up tighter than Fort Knox.  Okay not that tight but you get the picture.  One must have a key now to visit the Grand Ol' Courtland on lot 14.

And here is why:

As predicted, the minute they installed the appliances, the locks are put in place.    A little sad that I just can't go in whenever I want, but it also means we are drawing ever closer to that magical date.

I really wanted to go see how the staining was going along.  Let's just say I will kindly suggest that everything be painted again if they had not already consider it.  Here is the progress so far:

If you look at the steps you will notice how deep the stain looks on the right and how it seems to fade as you travel left.  This is not the lighting effect from the camera- this is actually how the stain currently looks.  So the stain needs to be deeper and a lot more even.  I was told by my SR that my PM is a bit OCD when it comes to staining.  I am going to assume that my SR and PM worked together in another community because I distinctly remember our house being his very first project where we are now, so I am not sure how she knows this information.  To be fair- I was told that the painters would be there this weekend and the PM would not be there to see it until Tuesday as RH has President's Day off.  So we will see if his OCD beats my OCD.  Challenge!

I also went and rechecked my kitchen cabinets to make sure the damaged one was replaced
Totally different cabinet!  Take a look below at the damaged one

Do you see what I am talking about?  Previously this end had NO outlet as per plan.  So yes that cabinet really needed to be replaced.  Did I mention I was giddy with delight admiring my 42 inch cabinets?  At my nearly 5'2" my step ladder (forget the step stool) will be put to good use.

And I got another pleasant surprise!  In the model homes we toured the left side of the gourmet island- the side closest to the refrigerator, had cabinets that were very shallow.  I checked my cabinets noticed that they are about 3-4 times deeper than the model cabinets- HOORAY!  That nearly makes up for a total lack of a walk in pantry for a home of this size.  I will say that is my ONE disappointment with this RH model so far.
The tradesmen also took the time to repair my column
It doesn't appear to be painted over but at my height I can't really tell. Whilst one thing was repaired another was damaged:
That is stain on my carpet.  The workers probably didn't even notice it.  "Oh they will clean that up, " my SR told me.   Really? Pray tell how?  We didn't upgrade our carpet and just got Rockport.  This is a cheap carpet to say the least.  If you have ever had cheap carpet the one thing you know about them is that they don't clean easily if they clean at all.   As long as it is taken care of, is all that really matters.

My sink and powder room fixtures have been installed.  I also took at picture of our granite jutted up against our cabinets.  In case you wanted to know this the popular Rushmore Cabinets in Hazelnut Glaze with the St Cecelia granite.  From all the blogs I have been reading, this is a very popular kitchen combination.
Sadly I did not get to go upstairs because it was taped off by the painters.  I do know that carpet should be in place upstairs as well.

Last but not least our neighborhood is growing fast!  I think I counted 14 available lots left and only one of them is wooded.  The rest is what I would call interior lots where all the backyards back up against one another.  I also noted lumber delivered for another lot AND my future neighbor and fellow Courtland Gater across street has broke ground!
This seems like such a distant memory to me.
Our heat was running today when I entered the home.  It was a nice toasted 70 degrees on the inside.  Good thing because this was on the outside
Yes, that is one large icicle. But happily my siding stayed in place during the high winds,  
I can't wait to see what happens next week and then I think I may be forced to take a 2 week break.  Not looking forward to that

Saturday, February 14, 2015

My Valentine's Day Gift

Was given to me by a neighbor and fellow blogger.  It is simply the most beautiful thing I have ever seen.  I am totally in love!

There is still some work to be done but I am more than excited to have numbers on my garage and a mailbox.  Yes I am excited about a mailbox!  

Friday, February 13, 2015

Another PM Update

My PM's updates seem to come every two weeks- which is okay.  The PM for this community is a very busy man with all  houses that are breaking ground on a weekly basis. There are about 3 homes scheduled to close in March.

So here is the scoop- my lot has been graded and the topsoil added.  He also said that my driveway will be repaired, no more lumps and bumps.  If I heard him correctly, the driveway will have to be moved over a little, for what reason I don't know.  My walkways from the driveway to the home have also been laid.  Carpets have been installed and my steps and railings will be stained this weekend. They also replaced my damaged kitchen cabinet.   I wonder did they also repair this:

see that huge scratch?  Do not paint over this- replace it

The only hiccup is that the railings for my portico have been delayed.


I was told there may be a lot of tape so be careful where I go if I visit this weekend, and I will visit.  I forgot to ask him about my chair rail as that was not installed the last time I was in the home.  At first I thought it didn't come with trim package #3 but I re read my punch list and sure enough, its there in black and white.  Always check your punch list- this helps to ensure you are on top of ALL your standards and your options that are to be placed in your home, like my chair rail.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Closer than I thought!

My PM just answered a few questions that I had about my home construction and I actually got quite a shock.  Specifically I questioned what the timeline looked like for my home.  His reply?  "Looks like we are on track for a March 5th pre settlement date" WHAT?!  I should have known but I did not know we were so close!  So yes my house looks like its moving fast because it is.

I will note that there are a few things they will do after settlement because we are a winter build.  Things like painting my front door and regrading and seeding my lot.  In addition, they still need to plant that buffer of trees.  I also suspect they will have to repour my driveway.  The asphalt is really lumpy and bumpy.  But still- that date is SO close!

He also answered my question about those day glo "sold" signs in my windows.  It helps let potential buyers know that the home is sold and it is not a "spec" house. which is a home built without a contract in place.  Makes sense, but can we put a big "This belongs to......." sign in the window instead?   No? Sigh.

Sunday, February 8, 2015

It's my home

I made my weekly trek to the new house and yes the busy little bees were hard at work again.  I stopped by the model house to get permission (oooh that kills me but I wanted them to know I am keeping watch).  They were entertaining quite a few perspective buyers- looks like our 70% (yes we are 70% sold out) may be reach 100% really soon.

The SRs were so busy in fact I was told I didn't need an escort.  Of course this may change next week but I have my permission papers for the day.

She has her other eyelash!

My stone facade is getting its finishing touches

Granite counter tops have been installed

Hardwoods all have been installed,  looks great with my counter tops
My kitchen the cabinets have installed but needs some finishing work

Fireplace mantle needs to be repainted but my surround looks gorgeous

There was a list of items taped to the kitchen cabinets that must be repaired or replaced.  I am glad because things like this should not happen

More Pics!

Crown Molding looks really nice in the study

When I walked into my master bathroom I literally squealed with delight

 I can't wait until they install the shower head

This is inlay is just beautiful

 I don't remember picking this for my shower floor but I like it, it has the look of travertine tile

 Great pic to see how the cabinets, counter top and tile look together

The hall bath is completed tiled and grouted, they still need to install the cabinets

As I was leaving I noticed that my porch columns  and coach lights were also in place

This image would look so much better without that dumpster in the way
Side note- I was so concerned about my laundry room door swinging in versus my preferred out, that I just had to check to see how "closed in" I would feel if I had to partially close the door to fold clothes on the counter.  With the door at a 45 degree angle, the space does not feel tight at all.  I can actually use all of the counter (reaching over a little of course) comfortably without any trouble.  In addition, the vinyl floor we choose for the laundry looks so much like ceramic tile, I don't think I will replace it right away.  

Funny Story:  As I was looking at my secondary bedrooms, I heard someone call out "Hello" from downstairs.  I didn't respond as I figured it was someone touring the home and I didn't want to scare them.  I attempted to slip out but the small group came around the corner just as I hit the bottom step.

"Oh," a well dressed woman said, "Someone else is looking at this house too"  I smiled and said "Actually, this is my home"   I think I gave her quite a shock as she had the designer hand bag, coat and heels and here I was in my traditional weekend attire: a hoodie, sweatpants and sneakers.  But boy did it feel good to say "My home."  Which reminds me:  I noticed several Ryan Homes posters with an orange "SOLD" sign in the windows.  I am curious as to why they would do this.  My lot sign with "sold" plastered on it is still out front (or is it?).