Nov 8, 2016

I’m covered in dust, which can only mean one thing: bustin’ up lath and plaster!



  • Pry-bar/hammer
  • Heavy duty garbage bags
  • Polytarp-super
  • Duct tape
  • Staple gun
  • Step ladder
  • Broom and dustpan
  • Gloves (I use them, Tom is brave enough to be bare handed!)
  • Masks (it’s really dusty!)
  • Work boots (we wear our work boots any time we’re working, I’ve already been saved by mine twice!)

Taking down lath and plaster isn’t very exciting. We use a pry-bar or hammer to get a hole in the wall and then pry each slat off. The slats burn really well so we keep them all for the fire pit. Plaster and insulation go in the big white garbage bags. Twigs and leaves go in the garbage too. I’m not really sure why they’re in the wall…I’m always worried we’re going to find animals, or even worse, spiders! Tom always deals with cobwebby parts for me 🙂


Dust gets EVERYWHERE; in our hair, on my glasses, up our nose and in our throats (even with masks) and it floats through to the rest of the house like crazy. We try to clean as we go, but the dust just stays.

We used the staple gun to hang polytarp, in what will likely be a futile attempt to keep too much dust from getting everywhere. We taped the bottom of the polytarp to the floor to really try and seal it off. Now we can work on the rest of the room!







Master Bedroom Recap

So much work went into the bedroom, but I’m going to try and do a quick recap, and only go into a bit of detail about interesting stuff, like the fireplace!

Here’s the quick list of work we did:

  • Clean all the junk out of the basement
  • Put everything from the second bedroom into the basement
  • Move everything from our bedroom into the second bedroom
  • Rip up the carpet in our bedroom
  • Tear down the wall of the shared closet between the two bedrooms (as well as all the closet shelves)
  • Tear the lath and plaster down
  • Tear the floor up
  • Level the floor
  • Put sub-floor down
  • Put insulation up
  • Hang drywall

Once we were done all that Tom went to work on building pocket doors. The house is so small we don’t want to waste space with traditional doors. There are two doors in the bedroom, the one that leads to the living room, and the one that will lead to our walk-in closet (currently a second bedroom).

For the doors to the living room we got a bi-folding door so that we could create French style pocket doors. I forget exactly what we used, a combination of pocket door kits and some of Tom’s inventing to get the whole thing together.

The door to what will eventually be the closet is a traditional pocket door.

After the doors were done (as done as they could be at the time) Tom went to work on the fireplace.

First he had to build something to sit it in. He left space for the venting and underneath he left space for a shelf. Then he installed the fireplace. After that we put drywall up, and then the stone!

  • Paint
  • Floor
  • Put up all the trim (baseboards, doors, window)
  • Do the electrical
  • Move back in!

Typed out like that makes it seem like it took no time at all, but it was almost seven months from start to finish! We weren’t working on it all the time. There would be weeks at a time when we didn’t touch it. Living in the second bedroom made it less urgent to get everything done all at once.

We still have stuff to do. The trim needs to be painted. We need a headboard, side tables, lamps, etc. but we can sleep in front of the fire and that’s exciting!

Now we’re moving on to the walk-in closet. Hopefully it doesn’t take as long!


November 6, 2016

Now that we’ve finished the bedroom (in the sense that we can live in it, there’s still work to be done) I had the idea to start keeping track of the renovations!

I have all the pictures from the bedroom stuff, so I’ll try to backtrack a bit and see if I can remember exactly what went into it, but I’ll likely just be posting the new stuff!

The closet is our next major project, this week we’ll start ripping everything apart!

This is my first post and I’m not exactly sure what to write. Obviously it’s a blog, so other people can read it, but I mostly just wanted a spot to keep track of our DIYs.

“Hello” to you if you’re reading, hopefully you find something you enjoy!