It’s Happening

Palo Verde

With Kyle in the home stretch of his thesis (he defends May 2nd!), work has slowed down here in the DotM house. Since I’m now the brains AND the brawn, and have been managing all the other little details that come with moving (changing addresses, meeting with installers, bringing the last bits over from the old house, cleaning, unpacking, taking piles of stuff to Goodwill, etc), it’s hard to do everything. But, here and there, after work, on lunch breaks, and on weekends, things have been happening. I finished painting the main part of the house (just the bathroom left!), Kyle installed our fancy new thermostat, we got master closet infrastructure, kitchen countertops are in progress (I’ll show you lots more in the next post), I pruned the trees in our back yard. We’ve unpacked most things. You know, the process. It’s happening, more slowly than I’d like, but it’s happening.


So, a little more about the many projects that have taken place in the last couple of weeks. Kyle’s mother Cindy gave us these Classy Closet inserts as a gift, and while I admit to being lukewarm about the idea at first (more as a matter of priority than lack of desire), they’re really fantastic. Everything is so neat and tidy! And since we don’t have any closet doors at the moment (they were all thrown into the dumpster in an aggressive fit of desire to get rid of anything that would eventually go), it’s even more important to be able to put things away properly. Super awesome. Kyle’s color-coded shirts make me happy!

We never really talked about the hot water heater – I meant to, in one of the posts that followed my parents’ visit, but it fell between the cracks. I wish I had a before picture of the hot water heater closet, but sadly, I do not. Let your imagination run wild when I tell you that it looked like someone (and possibly several cats) had been murdered in there. There was tinfoil stuffed into holes in the walls where the pipes were coming out, the door was only 18″ wide (seriously limiting the water heater you can throw into that bad boy), and the walls were stained several shades of brown and yellow. I apologize if you happen to be eating while reading this.

Water heater_MG_1458.jpg

Don took one look at it and resigned himself to a week’s worth of work instead of the “throw a new unit in the closet” project with which I had lured him in. After lots of searching, I had found an 18″ wide, extra tall, 40 gallon gas hot water heater to install, and sent Don and Kyle to pick it up at the nearest Lowes. I wish I could say that was a simple proposition, but, well, ahem. Let us not speak of it.

Don, in between helping us do a million other projects, completely rebuilt that little closet. It has a new elevated platform so that the blowout won’t flood the closet, new plumbing, new drywall, and new venting. Have you ever seen a better water heater closet? I sure haven’t.

Guest bedroomBooks

We’re definitely still in the process of setting up house (we’ve finally got everything out of the old house, so even though at interim times our new place has been clean and somewhat organized, every load of stuff from the old house makes a new mess), but a few spots are starting to take shape. One of these is the guest bedroom, which has been fun to set up. Kyle’s parents gave us a mattress and box spring, and my Mom and Don picked out an IKEA bed frame. I’ve been stashing guest-y type things like towels, extra toothbrushes, etc in there and eventually it will get some fun accents. It’s also our “wine cellar” as we keep all our booze in the closet (don’t get any ideas, Mom!).

Kitchen - almost done!

The kitchen doesn’t look like this now, but as we were dry-fitting the countertops I snapped this photo, showing what the kitchen will look like soon! We had to take everything back down to get those countertops sealed, but for a hot second I could see the light at the end of the tunnel. Can’t wait until this dream kitchen is done!

Adirondack chairsLemon tree

We signed up for irrigation (a service in older neighborhoods like ours, fed by an ancient canal system) last week, so though the back yard still looks a bit dead, it will be revived and green soon enough. Our first run with it is this Friday – this crazy, old-timey system deserves a whole post in itself – I’ll let you know how it goes! We’re really loving settling in here, and it’s awesome to have so much light bright space. We just keep looking at each other and saying “this is our house!” Life is so sweet.


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  1. Jason April 18th, 2012

    What kind of thermostat!

  2. ALarkin April 18th, 2012

    Jason: Yes, we did get a Nest (I’m assuming that’s why you’re asking)! I guess Kyle ordered it at like Christmas or something? Crazy.

    No pics here because we took if off last weekend so that I could patch the wall underneath and haven’t put it back on yet.

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