It has been a while since I really talked about the Forever Home and what is happening. Truthfully I miss sharing our weekly updates on building but because work has basically come to stop for so many reasons I didn't want to come here and do filler blog posts.
Today I am going to take you back to the start....
Feb, 16th, 2012 to be exact. That was the day we took over the Forever Home while still owning our first home which was exactly 5 min. away. You can see here from one of my old post May/June 2012 the amount of work that was on our plates. The old house still needed minor changes before it went up for sale. Finally in August 2012 the old house was up for sale.
Aug, Sept, and Oct flew by quickly with many viewings of the old house but we had a major problem. The house was small. Most people loved the yard & the garage but a two bedroom home was not cutting it for almost everybody. We had to make a big decision so we did in Nov 2012.
Dec 2012 - I wrote this post. We took on two home renovating projects at once. We worked hard from Dec 2012 up to July 2013 on the old house. Everything inside that house was updated but we missed the good time to sell a home in our area.
Once the old house was up for sale and out of our way, all of our attention was back onto the Forever Home. We desperately needed a garage because if the old house sold we would have no where to store our goods. We moved all of our attention onto building Branko's Dream Garage.
If you are a regular follower around here you know what happened next. It was probably the hardest blow to all of our renovating projects. Branko and I worked very very hard for a good 3 days on the Dream Garage. In two days the two of us put up 68 sheets of plywood on the walls. We were almost done! We were over joyed and couldn't believe we took on this massive project and were close to finishing the outside.
Nov 1. 2013 When disaster strikes - we had a massive wind storm. Saturday I had left to my parents to do some shopping in Buffalo with my mom and Branko headed to the Forever Home to do some minor work himself.
To this day I really don't know how well he kept it together, I cried and cried and cried when Branko sent me this text message "The garage is destroyed" WHAT! I frantically texted back, what do you mean destroyed??????? Was he exaggerating....maybe just a wall came down. NOPE. The wind took down the entire garage. The weekend became increasingly worse on Sunday night Branko received a dreaded phone call from his mother that his Uncle passed away.
At this point the stupid garage just didn't matter.
Now what.....we had the old house up for sale, a destroyed garage, and a 2nd home that was under construction. To top it all off Branko was devastated hearing about his Uncle passing. The following week was a blurry mixture of visiting family and Branko frantically calling engineers and insurance for the garage.
We decided that re-building the garage before the winter was not possible. We turned all of our focus back onto the Forever Home. We took the old house off the market for the winter and decided to hit the market again May 2014. The old house sold quickly this time and by June 2014 we had 60 days to move. Our Move date was Aug 2014.
We moved into the Forever Home and were living in one very small room. It was basically a closet. Branko woke up one morning and said "I'm scared we will make the same mistake on this house that we did the old home" Meaning rooms too small, ceilings too low. What if one day we wanted to sell.
Sept 2014 construction started. We added an addition to the back of the house as much as we could and ordered new trusses to make our ceilings much higher. We went from 7ft walls to almost 10ft walls. In center of the house the walls are 15ft high. We changed our 2 small and 1 large room layout too 4 bedrooms. One large master with 3 good size bedroom
Nov 2014 - We find out I'm pregnant!!!! YAY! We also still have no heat. What we did next would seem un-imaginably to most people heck some days even we were like WTF are we doing??!!!! We decided to seal in our Mudroom it was 400 sq ft and live in there for the winter with 3 baseboard heaters. Our washroom was across the house and we had one large industrial heater in there. In the morning I would wake up 30min early to go and plug that heater in and warm up the washroom so I could get ready for work. Our pipes froze on numerous occasions and we cooked dinner in our Parka's. We had a wood stove but it was really only good to us on the weekends. During the week we are both at work and nobody was home to stoke the fire.
Dec 2014 - April 2015 - We worked and worked and worked. All winter on whatever we could get done even though we went thru the worst winter ever. No joke. Our driveway is 300 ft long and sometimes we would come home after work and would have to walk up the driveway in snow up to our waists. We ordered out a lot of food since our kitchen area was NOT heated. Slowly, the forever home started coming together and the dreaded winter months were ending. Insulation was filled into the walls and ceiling. Electrical work was completed and passed.
May 2015 - Dominik arrived!!!! May 20th to be exact! Our hopes were that during the month of April we would pay somebody to finish our drywall the mud and taping part. This would have meant that the house would be primed and in a very good condition. Well, as it is with contractors which we normally NEVER work with they asked for more money on the 2nd day! They wanted $3000 more to be exact which means our cost to finish drywall would have been over $10,000. This was out of budget for us and we ended our deal with them.
May 2015 - Sept 2015 - Only two rooms have been primed. We moved into those two rooms as the mudroom was not suitable with a baby. Our deck is mostly finished so that we can walk up to the house properly. Our fireplace is almost completely installed.
Going down memory lane has been pretty awesome for me. Branko and I have accomplished so much from 2012 - 2015 for just two people. We did 90% of the work on both homes ourselves.
What's next you ask????? Well tune in next week as our updates were be more frequent now. We have a major change happening this weekend to the Forever Home and we are beyond excited to get this project under way. I plan on also sharing our fire place installation soon as well!
I hope you have enjoyed following our crazy adventures! Don't forget to follow me on Instagram, I normally share what is happening around here and how we are living.