The Queen Of Remodeling Patience, Chapter 1 — “Front Room” View-A

Style & Stuff | Posted by Jannie on 29 January 2010 @ 7:08 AM 52 Comments


How do I even start this whole series?

The old fireplace seems a good spot. Guess I’ll just jump on in.

But let me douse the flames first. Ouch!


Above was Christmas Eve 1992 with our now deceased friend, Nick. Gee, this is off to a cheery start.


We enjoyed that fireplace for quite a few years until we demolished it.

I think the photo directly below must’ve been from about 1997, because the one after it was from 1998 when Mom and Dad visited.

And there was the fireplace…


… Gone!

That’s Dad standing on the ladder in the corner where it had been. And I see we’d already started on the new kitchen, as per the white cabinet off to the left. (Much of the remodeling projects on this house have overlapped over the years!)

Then… Dad and Jim knocked that wall down, thankfully not a supporting one!  Thus, our old master bedroom (that area with the one little window) became part of the front (entry) room too.


Then… we busted out from the old master to a new addition at the far end, making the whole shebang one room, with the archway for style, of course.

And — Ta-Da!  Finished room here below…


Judging from Kelly’s toddler toys off in the distance, I’d say the directly above was from c. 2003.

I’d show you a photo of the area now but I want to de-clutter it a bit first — I’ve furniture and a dozen big storage bins full of Kelly’s stuff there, hanging out while her room gets the penguin update. So, you’ll need remodeling patience too until I show you these wonders, all no later than 2014. :)

The carpet on the other side of the archway Jim built?  That’s the stuff our pets so enjoying puking on!!!   (We don’t even have that dark green area rug anymore, the pets did not treat it kindly. )

Sooooo, that’s one view of our house as you walk in our front door!  Except said door will actually become a window, because we’ve built a breezeway with a new entryway at the front of the house, with the breezeway connected to a new 2-car garage with a living room up over it.  That will be our “final” living / theater room — started over 6 years ago, but not yet finished.  Hey, why rush into finishing these additions, we say?! Mind you, Jim does this house stuff in his spare time.  And he does tend to have a few projects on the go simultaneously.  Never a dull moment here with my wonderful Jim!  :)

Did I mention the plan is to sell this house, move back to Canada and start the whole remodeling thing all over again.  Oy!

But back to this house….

As you can well imagine, there was a fair amount of ruckus involved in our front room remodel, over the approximately FIVE YEARS it took for this project from start to finish!!!  :)

These next two photos depict just a bit of said ruckus.


There is a lovely new fireplace in the back corner, I will showcase it some day. (Have a little de-cluttering to do there too!)


Lots of fun!!  :)

And remember a few paragraphs above I told you we added a piece onto the old master bedroom, which then became part of the whole front room scenario?  Here are a couple shots of that addition during construction…



And even earlier — me helping Jim level the first floor joists.


Oh, and check this out! The adjacent room (with the circle-top window over French doors) was actually the very first of the 4 additions we’ve made to this house. (And I’m not even including the tree house in those 4.) Said first addition was erected between c. 1994 to 1996 — a room to be featured in upcoming posts. It was originally planned to be our main living room, but will be the master bedroom when it’s finished — yes, we’re even now remodeling the remodel!  But it WAS a completely finished living room indeed for a good few years, which was joyful beyond compare!

manigir_avatar hoo-woo!

So that’s it!!

Did I lose you, anywhere, Sweeties??

Oh, and I must add that once Jim gets the calling and tells me he MUST build something else, we basically design these additions together, and go for them. I generally plan the room lay-outs and features and he builds them for me, with me helping, and usually with not too much grumbling on my part!  :)  I so pine to live in a finished house,  Friends. I really do! And have pined for some years now.  I mentioned we’ve been working on this house for 17 years, right??

Btw, Jim does ALL this woodwork himself  (remember our dining room, which used to be a bedroom?)

He does hire helpers for slabs, framing, drywall, plumbing and electrical.   And I do a lot of the painting. And all the decorating!

Oh, and a couple of you newer readers have asked why I’m called “The Queen Of Remodeling Patience.”  That was Patricia Wisdom’s entry in my Jannie Funster tagline “contest” some moons ago. Patricia ended up being one of the five top finalists, with Lance the grand prize winner for his entry of “Singing For Beer And Donuts.”

Well, if you still have an atom of energy left after getting through this whole post, have you any questions?  Comments?



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  • 1

    On 31 January 2010 at 9:49 am

    Jannie said, 

    Suzie!! yes, Jim bought the house almost 22 years ago, I loved in almost 20 years ago and we started working on the house 17 years ago. Four additions, and complete room re=models. If you understand French “Petit a petit, l’oiseau fait son nid,” applies here. I may have a word or two of that wrong, but it translates, “little by little a bird makes his nest.” And where do you live? In a nice finished house??

    Snag!! I hope you could follow this! It is pretty wordy , but kind of a necessary intro for series (or so I thought when I wrote this, anyway!) I love large spaces to. The one mistake we make, imho was closing off the kitchen a bit, in order to get more cabinets. I would never close off any part of a room again. :) All the ceilings in this house were standard 8′ ones so the additions are all higher than that. So if you knocked out a wall, your landlord might not be amused?? Odyssey — love that word for this!!

    Megan!! Well, it;’s either bitch and moan or not bitch and moan, so I’ve settled into the acceptance mode — much easier on my heart and head. Three months or less sounds HEAVENLY to me!!!!! Hell, I’d even settle for 3 years or less. And did Andy succeed on his 2-story garage project in that time-frame?? Wow, Andy and Jim sound like life buddies!!! We should all meet. And of course one day I’ll meet you!

    Topsy Tweet!! Whoo-hoo!!


  • 2

    On 31 January 2010 at 10:52 am

    jingle said, 

    I just want to pass through
    and say hello to you.

    Happy Sunday,
    Be cool on Monday, 😉

  • 3

    On 31 January 2010 at 11:40 am

    Nadia - Happy Lotus said, 

    Hi Jannie,

    I love to see how homes are transformed and it is wonderful that you all were able to do all those changes on your own. You are both very talented people. I love how you were able to change so much.

    Is Jim from Canada too?

  • 4

    On 31 January 2010 at 11:42 am

    Nadia - Happy Lotus said, 

    Hi again,

    The reason for my last question was because you mentioned that you are thinking of moving to Canada and getting another house to remodel. I realized I should have written that right after I hit the post button. Oppps. :)

  • 5

    On 31 January 2010 at 2:57 pm

    Zeenat{Positive Provocations} said, 

    oh wow remodeling…sounds fun..and looks exciting. I personally don’t have the patience to sit through it..but i guess when you want it badly enough…you develop patience for anything eh….Good luck with the awesome remodeling..looks good..and what fun your hubby loves his projects. If i can get my hubby to even pick up his own cup it will be a miracle..;)
    Much Love,

  • 6

    On 31 January 2010 at 7:40 pm

    Yaya said, 

    Holy Cow!!!!!!!! That is INSANE!!!! Wowee. Ku-Dos!

  • 7

    On 31 January 2010 at 8:31 pm

    Paige said, 

    holy grout, y’all have rebuilt a whole house within a house. no wonder you are so tired and turned off comments on 90 day old post, which seemed kinda mean at first but then I thought hey bb doesn’t have time to re-read those old post and explain the comment to you dear Jannie who in turn has to reply to said comment on accounta you are so good at that sort of thing.

  • 8

    On 31 January 2010 at 9:11 pm

    Davina said, 

    This exhausts me! How do you feel? The thought of that remodelling and all the disorder during the process sends me loopy! I bow down to your stamina and perseverance. I KNOW it will be worth it when you’re finished.

  • 9

    On 1 February 2010 at 8:51 am

    Jannie said, 

    Jingle!! Hello! Are you a logging blogger? Cool, yes that’s me today,tho it is supposed to get up to a high of 55, or so!

    Hey Nadia!!! Thank you , yes much tranformation for sure. Here’s a quick snypopsis on Canada: Jim and I were both born and raised there, but he had long since moved to the States. (He is 22 years older than I.) He was living in Texas but visiting his mom in Nova Scotia when I met him in 1989. We have a house up there, currently rented out, the one he bought his two brothers out on when his mom died and left it to the three of them. Stay tuned for our Life & times, as I will stay tuned for yours!!

    Zeenat!! I am sorry but your last sentence made me laugh so even tho it may not be an entirely humorous subject for you. Well, Jim wants the renovation badly and since I want him badly I have followed and stuck around him. :) Yes, he does love staying hyper-busy. An I love him!! 😉

    YaYa!! And you ain’t seen nothin’ yet, Babe, on the work we’ve done over these 17 years since we first lifted a hammer!! Stick around for updates. Much much more fun insanity to be revealed. Whoo-hoo.

    Paige!! Yes, those spammers give Blue Bunny frights when he has to go in and moderate the kommints, I mean comments!! He’d never be able to keep up with the current ones, so that’s the plan he’s devised on the 90-day-thing! And we built a whole house outside a house too!! :)

    Davina!! how do I feel?? Great question, I feel great about the few completely finished places in this house. Ad I mentioned above, I used to bitch and moan, but now I blog! As to stamina and perseverance, I have no choice on that! It’s s survival thing with my Jimmy and his quest to build out as far as the codes will allow, and even then he tries to push things! :)


  • 10

    On 2 February 2010 at 5:04 am

    Adrenalynn said, 

    Ohmygoodness, you are far more patient than I’ll ever be! Best of luck to you. And thank you for the awesome and scary award! Shudder :)

  • 11

    On 5 February 2010 at 6:58 am

    Jannie said, 

    Thanks wonderful Adrenalynn!! And you aint’ seen nothin’ yet Girl. I’ve those 20 more posts!!!


  • 12

    On 10 February 2010 at 11:45 am

    The Sweetest Bloom | Jannie Funster said, 

    […] our first addition, then a second in 1996. And later, a third — glimpses of which I showed you here.  Sometime during the years of those first 3 additions, God also had us gut and remodel our […]

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