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Posted on February 9, 2012
Bah Humbug


I have always suspected that the above expression was a load of hooey. 

After all, I’d rather spend my time on the beach in Costa Rica than on the plane on the way there.  Although I’m not a mom, I’m guessing holding a baby is more edifying that the swollen ankles and nausea of pregnancy and having gone back to school for interior design, I’d rather be standing here holding my diploma (figuratively…I don’t actually have any idea where the literal paper is) than cutting out foam core for hypothetical house models and driving two hours round trip to Cullowhee everyday.  

What got me out on the wrong side of the bed today? 

I’m ready to be DONE with this house!!!!  We’re at the point where we’re ALMOST THERE, but every time I turn, I see a thousand things that still need to be done….it’s sort of the point in the house move when you want to start dumping whole drawers into boxes rather than wrapping everything individually in cellophane.  Kidding really….I am not cutting corners during the final phases….y’all already know I’m not actually DOING anything – just telling other people what to do.  I just wish they’d do it faster!

So…here are some progress shots of actual tile and cabinets going in!  They are coming to refinish the wood floors on Monday so truly, measurable progress is taking place….just ignore my bitching and moaning.


View from back room - suffused with light and a man named Eddie who clearly thinks highly of himself.


Kitchen and Dale


More Kitchen More Dale


Looking through to back room…kitchen is on your right.  There will be a raised bar on the wall where that tool belt is resting.


Blue pennyround tile in upstairs bathroom that is so cute I want to marry it.  The tile, not the bathroom because that would be weird.


Big shower waiting for some snazzy tile work…you will see a guest starring appearance from the carrera subway tile that was such a hit at Starnes.  Note marble tile on floor.


Nice sunny window beneath which to sit and ponder the mysteries of the universe….on a toilet.

OK folks….that’s all I have for you at this point.  

And just to clarify….I get the whole metaphorical resonance of the “journey”….I embrace it and journal about it daily on my yoga mat while in lotus position.  I’m just ready to get my St. Christopher statue and bury it upside down in the front yard under a “for sale” sign.  Enough already!

Posted on August 30, 2011
Roost Rehab. #2

Like cool breezes and turning leaves signal the coming of fall, murmurs of our country’s potentially eminent financial vortex can only signal one thing….I’m buying another house!  Yipppeeee!  Seriously, when God handed out interesting timing, I clearly wasn’t smelling roses and picking petunias….I was first in line, baby!

We’re back in Montford, but NOT in the historic district part of Montford which means one less headache and one less stack of forms to deal with.  If I want to side this thing in purple and green argyle vinyl, I can.  I won’t, but I can, and there is a certain sense of liberty about that.

So you want to meet the new lady don’t you?  Drumroll please……..


This one is exciting because it represents a whole new set of challenges than the last.  Starnes was a petri dish of toxic biological experimentation, but the floorplan was good and¸ aside from taking out a wall, we didn’t change anything structural.  With Houston, we’re playing “Fun with Floorplans” and I get to massage my spatial rejigging muscles – I bet you didn’t know you had those…they’re located in the lower thigh.

Speaking of tearing things up, this is a good place to address a nagging pet peave of mine (or at least I like to act like it’s a pet peeve). The confusion about the difference between an interior decorator and an interior designer.

I like to explain it this way using visual metaphor.

This is what an interior decorator does:


Same nose, same jawline….different foundation that doesn’t match her neck color.

This is what an interior designer does:


That’s right….I can cut open your face and rearrange things, only in my case, your face is your house and I do clear it with my contractor first.  Frankly, I like doing the decorator stuff too, but this project will involve actual plastic surgery in addition to a fresh coat of paint.

So, here’s a house tour, starting with the first floor:


Reflected behind me and the trusty Arnold is the front room, complete with fireplace that WILL be fitted with a gas insert.  Here’s a closeup of the grooviest mirrored tile you’ve ever seen:


Do you think I’ll win a Griffin Award for preservation if I manage to incorporate this into the redo?  If there is right in this world I will!


Dining Room that will cease to exist once the walls come tumbling down.






…and this…


…..will be expanded to make a master suite. 



Back room off the kitchen which will become part of the larger kitchen, living, dining area.  So what do you think?  Should I leave the dropped ceiling?  (kidding)

The upstairs has three bedrooms and a bath.  Nothing major going on up there - just resurfacing everything, making the closets bigger and changing out the bathroom.  The major reno. will be going on downstairs.  

Next post, I’ll run my floorplan changes by you.  I’m getting uber excited!!!

In closing, I just want to say that, as God as my witness, with dying carrot in hand thrust towards a vivid Southern sky (movie reference anyone…come on, it’s easy), I am going to keep the budget in the forefront of my little head this time….in the fore-er front than it was at Starnes.  SERIOUSLY!!  seriously.