Friday, June 4, 2021

Progress On The House

I wrote earlier about our house getting a "facelift."  I don't think I mentioned in that previous post that the house turned 50 years old this year -- it was built in 1971.  It was definitely time to make some repairs and improvements.  We were actually ready to get started on this last summer, and then Covid came along. 
   I took this picture in the spring of 2015, six years ago.  The house was already looking tired; the shutters were fading, and as we later learned, they were dry rotting too.  The shutters that were in the shade most of the time still looked pretty good, but the sun is hard on wood and paint, isn't it?  Our yard looked prettier then, too.  We had probably just finished pruning and clearing out weeds when I took these pictures.  However, the holly tree on the corner, the rose bush against the house, and the other shrubs were a much better size then.  We've had so much rain here the last two years, everything has grown like wildfire -- or maybe I should say like weeds.  For the past two years, we haven't done much to the yard except take care of the grass, do some weed eating, and get up leaves in the fall.  It will be good to get some landscaping done.

In this picture, you can see where the base of the column on the left has rotted -- not good.  Also, these pics were taken before the new windows and gutters were  installed.  The viney looking stuff growing right in front of the porch is cotoneaster; I definitely want to get that removed.  I think we might plant some small Japanese holly bushes there instead.  They're a pretty reliable, compact shrub.  I want to keep the holly tree and the David Austin rose bush, and we'll have to see about the other stuff.
So here are some pictures of the house and yard from this week.  Overgrown much?  Yikes!  Our main focus at the moment, though, is the house repairs.  In this picture the painters had been spray painting the front porch ceiling.  There was one point that day where two of our three main-level exits from the house were blocked off, and we had to take Duncan out the back door.  The steroids are making him thirsty, so he drinks a lot of water and goes to the bathroom a lot.  We had a few anxious moments that day. 

It was very cloudy two days ago when I took these first pictures, so everything has kind of a gloomy cast.  In this picture, you can see the new, fiberglass porch columns.  They're not supposed to ever rot like the wooden ones, and they will be painted white, as will the clapboard on the gable over the porch.  The tree branch hanging down in the foreground of the picture belongs to our tulip magnolia tree, and we've decided to have that taken down.  It's grown pretty big, and it's too close to the house.  I'll miss it but our new roof will be better off without the tree hanging over it.  In addition, we'll get more sunlight in our living room and dining room. 
This is the new ceiling of our screened porch, which I've never shown on my blog.  It's not finished yet, but it already looks a thousand times better than the other ceiling.  It was damaged from leaks over the years.  That's my kitchen window you see.

This is the new carport ceiling, and the front porch ceiling is done in the same board and batten style.  These porch ceilings were originally sheetrock, and that wasn't practical for outdoors.  We'll be replacing the outdoor light fixture here after the other work is done.

This is a picture of our (currently) ugly screened porch.  We're hoping to make it much prettier when all is said and done.  We'll get this back door painted black like the shutters, and Hal and I will paint the cement floor.  The new screens are on order, and we already had furniture out here.  Also, the picnic table is going to go bye-bye.

The other big thing that got done this week was that vents were installed in the soffit under the eaves.  This will be for the ridge venting that will go on top of the roof.  As you can see, there's still a lot of painting yet to be done.  This is the back of the house, to the left of the screened porch.

The painters also pressure-washed our gutters and some of the house trim.  We're thrilled with how clean they got our gutters since they're still very new.

They had to temporarily remove some of the gutter from the screened porch, and you can see how clean it is.

Here are more soffit vents on the front of the house.

Today we got a nice surprise -- the shutters were delivered and they started hanging them!  We're so excited; we really like the black color with the brick.  We have six windows across the front of the house, and the guy who was here today hung four sets of shutters.  He'll do the others next week, since he needs someone to hold the ladder while he works on those.  They're higher off the ground and they're on a bad slope.

I got my shutter dogs, guys, and I love them!!  You can see in this picture how that tulip magnolia hangs on the roof.  Hal has pruned and removed branches numerous times, but they keep growing back.  
That's all I have to show for today.  I feel like they got a lot done this week, and we're really pleased with how things are looking.  It feels like there's a ton of work being done, and it's a little overwhelming, but I think it will all be worth it in the end.    
Thanks so much for your visit today.  I really like keeping an account (a journal of sorts) online, complete with pictures.  However, it's a lot more fun when I know there are some of you out there who are interested enough to visit and read about our adventures here.  😊   
All the best, 



  1. So much work being done! The black shutters against the brick is so classic and elegant. Who's going to be standing on the ladder next week? Hope it is not you!

  2. What a lot of work! Your home will thank you for it, and you'll look back and know that it was worth all the effort and inconvenience. The black shutters look great!

  3. Love those new shutters! House maintenance is hard work but definitely worth it.

  4. Everything is looking so good, Denise! The black shutters really look good against the brick. It’s hard keeping up with a house, but since we love our homes, it’s important to us.

  5. It does look good, Denise. I know you are pleased with the progress.We need our shutters painted because they have faded and leaves are a constant problem in the corner of our gutter.I hope the rain we have been getting is not going your way so you can finish your project.
    Have a great week.



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