Archive for the ‘lighting’ Category

Climbing the stairway to…

June 30, 2007

Our second floor! We went out visit our house today, and saw that we’ve now got part of an actual stairway. The stairs were a bit of a splurge for us, and we ran several hundred dollars over budget, because we wanted the treads, newels and railings to be maple. The risers and balusters are pine, so they will be painted white, but the maple portions will be stained a natural maple color:

One of my favorite parts of the house is the large, screened back porch, with two – count ’em, two! – ceiling fans. Today, upon arrival at our house, we saw that the back porch had been screened in. This was a surprise to me, since our builder Woody hadn’t mentioned it in our conversations that week:

The hole in the backyard is all filled up, and we found the cause of this sitting in our front yard:

Actually, while we were at the house, Woody came out and told us that he was working on a Saturday, because the site guy was going to be back out that day, and Woody needed to meet with him. We were surprised to find Woody working on the weekend, but it was a lucky chance that brought him there, since he helped us solve the riddle of our wheelbarrow. We’d bought a wheelbarrow from Home Depot, but there were no accompanying directions. Before Woody arrived, we’d put the entire thing together, except that there was one extra piece that we couldn’t make fit. Woody very kindly bent the metal for us, so that it would fit exactly where it should. Crappily made Chinese wheelbarrow!

We got the barrow, though, so that we could haul the last of our compost pile into our compost bin. We’d been composting in the silt fence area for the erstwhile gopher tortoises, but now that we have the bin, we needed to move this pile into the bin so that our landscaper, who is coming this week, can remove the silt fence and mow that area. Our compost is coming along nicely and is moist, rich, dark brown, and, generally, everything that a compost should be.

Another surprise was that we got the handles for our interior doors:

The exterior door has the temporary knob on it still, and when I asked Woody why, he said that it was because he didn’t want any of the sub-contractors to have the keys to our actual lock. Very smart!

Our LG microwave/hood has also been installed:

We purchased this at Appliance Direct, new in box, for about $15 less than it would have cost us to buy it new from other stores at which we’d shopped. Not one of our better bargains, but every little bit helps!

Some of our light fixtures were put up last week, and I don’t think I’d posted pictures of those. Here is our front porch light:

It came with regular bulbs, and we just haven’t bought the candelabra base CFL’s yet. We do have the energy-saving compact fluorescent lightbulbs up in all of our interior light fixtures, as well as in the lights outside our garage:

And, finally, we saw something pretty cool today. On our way to have lunch at the Country House Restaurant in Lake Wales, we spotted a mama & papa sandhill crane with their baby, on the side of a busy highway. The baby looked too young to fly, because he was still really downy, so I can only assume that they are raising him in the parking lot of a shopping center! I wish them luck in their endeavour, and hope they manage to keep that baby safe:

What is next for us, you ask? The electrician is coming on Monday to finish the electrical work, so that we can get an inspection this coming week and have the electricity turned on. Once this is done, the flooring can be finalized – halleluia! This will probably happen not this coming week, but the one after. The painters are coming this week to paint and stain the stairs, and, once the lot grading is complete, the landscaper will come and do his thing. Then the driveway will be poured next week, though I would think that the driveway should be poured before the landscaper lays the sod? The propane guy has to be sweet-talked into coming and hooking up our range, and the cabinet people need to install our potato & onion baskets. After that, we are pretty much done! Woody is going to have someone come in to give the place a thorough cleaning, since there are about 10 million dead lovebugs inside the house, and he’s hoping to have it ready by the end of July. We’re keeping all 20 of our fingers (are we aliens?) and all 20 of our toes crossed that this is the case, since it would be really nice to have a bit of summer time to settle in before school starts for me in mid-August.


Let there be lights!

June 10, 2007

Our house now has lights, fans, cabinet boxes, and a garage door. We go to New York for the weekend, and look what happens!

Our builder, Woody Dortch of Classic Structures, Inc., is now on vacation visiting his son at the Air Force base in Texas, so things have slowed up until he returns from his visit this week.

I actually got a sneak preview of the house before my husband did, since he had to work all this week. One of the benefits (maybe?) of being a teacher is that we get laid off each June. Sure, we get a nice, long unpaid leave of absence, but in what other profession do you hear society grousing that they get the privilege of being laid off so frequently? Ah, the joys of an unsteady income! Seriously, though, I do enjoy the summers, but that is only due to the fact that I am fortunate enough to have a spouse who does, indeed, have a constant paycheck.

To get back to my point, though, when I was out at the house by myself, I encountered a fox in distress. (S)he was painfully thin, rheumy-eyed, and was staggering around alongside the road. At first, I thought the fox was just hunting something, since its head was down, and it appeared to be giving all its attention to the ground:

When I got out of the car to take pictures, though, I realized that it was either hurt or sick. My first thought was to try to bring it to the vet, so I got out the towel I carry for just this purpose in the car. My legendary towel has also been used to wrap up the likes of a possum with a head injury I found in Charlotte, so I was hoping to put it to use on that day. However, as I approached the fox, the possibility that it could have rabies came through my mind. Could I guarantee that, even through the thick towel, the fox would not be able to bite me? No, I could not. (I often have such conversations with myself on a lonely summer’s day). Having approached the fox, I then began to back away, but he’d caught the interesting smell of my towel. He walked toward me, sniffing the towel. I held very still while he gave it a sniff, visions of attack squirrels dancing through my head, but the fox lost interest and walked away. Berating myself for my cowardice, I nonetheless decided to retreat and live another day rabies-free.

And now, enough digressions – I will get right to the good stuff. Here is the exterior of our house, avec garage door:

And now, for your viewing enjoyment, I will proceed to attach photos of our lighting choices. First is the kitchen, a good place to begin, since the majority of our lives revolves around food. Here is a photo of the cabinet boxes for our kitchen island:

And here is the fluorescent light in the kitchen:

Here is a photo of our kitchen pendants and the matching dining room chandelier in the background. These are all from Home Depot:

One of my favorite parts of the house is our big back porch, that will be screened in:

We got the same fan and lighting fixtures for our guest bedroom and for the library. First, the guest bedroom:

And the library:

We purchased the same vanity fixture for the downstairs bath and the upstairs bath:

Here are the sconces for our master bedroom:

And here is the fan for the master bedroom. This is the Hampton Bay Covington model fan from Home Depot; it was very energy efficient, and we thought it would go well with the furniture for this room.

Next steps: the cleaners will continue clearing out our lot; Woody’s assistant will finish up our library shelves; the electrician will install the great room fan and foyer chandelier; finally, we will get temporary electric, so that the HVAC system can be installed and the house can begin acclimatizing for the bamboo floors.