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The House on High Street

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Farewell Pizza Oven!

The House on High Street

Ok, I am a little heartbroken.  Within the past few weeks, we made the decision to “ixnay” the pizza oven (in the kitchen…per se’), as it was becoming a little “too much” if ya know what I mean.  Too much weight (like 2000 pounds).  Too much space (at least 4’x5′).   And a little too much from our budget!  Just the venting alone for this extraordinary fire-operated cooking appliance, which required the installation of specialized pipe along the outside of the house…and up THREE stories, was ridiculous.

Compromise = Pizza Stove outside + In the near future

Scott gets an A+ for actually allowing me to come to this conclusion on my own.   I admit, I was rather hell-bent on my pizza oven for a long time.

Anyway, we are still determined to include special touches to our kitchen to create the look and personality that we want.

Our kitchen style?  Traditional.  Semi-Rustic.  Romantic.  Charming.  Warm.

A few ideas we have…cobblestone backsplash, authentic candle sconces, semi-worn rustic wood floors,   furniture-styled cabinets, dark with light colored contrasts, hanging pot-rack fixtures, 18th Century chandeliers, and interior window shutters…to name a few.

I never realized how much time I would spend in designing a kitchen.   I always figured I would know exactly what I wanted and have no problem in putting it all together.  (HGTV makes it look so easy!)  However, it is a lot trickier than I thought.  There are so many things to work around.

In the end, the best part is that it will be portray our personalities.  Both Scott and I are traditional, warm, and a little…authentically rustic.  I guess that’s why we had a vision with this home the very first time we walked inside.


More DEMO for Master Bath, Jack & Jill Bath, Laundry Room, and Kitchen

The House on High Street

Last week, more demolition was completed to open up a few walls and prepare for a Master Bath & Master Sitting Area with Walk-out; Jack & Jill Bath; 2nd Story Laundry Room; and enlarged Kitchen area (for a beverage-bar, utility closet, and wall oven).

The following pictures show Plaster and Lath removal.  It was a difficult job, as all the debris needed to be hauled down a steep flight of steps to the dumpster.  But, it was a success.

There is still more to do!

Master Bedroom -BEFORE – Bye-bye Wall!


Master Bedroom – Removing Plaster & Lathe to open up for Sitting Area
Kitchen Wall – Before – This is where the Beverage Bar, Utility Closet, Pantry, and Wall Ovens will go.


Plaster & Lath Removed.  See the stairway in there?  We don’t know when nor how this was used.
Master Bath – Before – Pretty, huh?
Master Bath – This actually looks better than PRE-Demo
This wall will be bumped out to enlarge Master Bath Space
4th Bedroom – Before – Soon to be Sitting Area in Master with Walk-out
During Demo – Future Master Bath & Sitting Area


Future Sitting Room and Walk-out
Walls opened – Here you see the Master Bath attached to the Hall.


EXTRA Ordinarily Yours

Decisions! Decisions! Decisions!

The House on High Street

Wood Stain Color? Kitchen Tile or Hardwood? Granite counter top design? Colors?

I am not afraid of color. Scott tends to stick to neutral colors. This house looks big, but when you are in one of the room you realize that they are not big…just high ceilings and windows! Color will add warmth and a cozy feel…which is very important to us, both.

We are getting better at compromising! We even have a great system going. (I was never expecting my husband to be so opinionated with picking out colors, furniture,curtains…you name it! But,I am learning to appreciate this and work with it.) The best news is that we always end up making home decisions that we never regret.

We have reached consensus with the lay-out of the kitchen. No matter how much Scott thinks he knows about kitchens,I have been cooking in kitchens since I was a nanny in college and catered Rachel Maria’s Delicacies. So, I know how to design a space that will flow, make me happy, AND allow guests to feel comfortable.  This is why we will have a Beverage Bar (away from my cooking space).  I am even considering those rope-offs so I will not be tripping over people (my family and husband can be a little helicopter-ish!) when I am serving a meal.

My theory is, I like my space and I respect yours, too.  If you say you’re going to do something, I will leave you alone and trust that you’ll ask for help if needed.  So, I am hoping that the kitchen design will give me the space I need to do what I do best.

Here are the other areas we have reached consensus: White Cabinets. Dark Espresso-colored Island. A Not-too-red & Not-too-brown wood stain on hard-wood floors. (We are looking at mahogany colors.) The Master Bath will be light & bright. The Powder Bath will be a darker-rustic (slate tile & cinnamon/browns/taupe colors).

I’m also narrowing down interior decorating/color palettes. When it comes to decorating, I’ll give Scott a few options to give it a Yay or Nay. When it comes to landscaping, man-cave, contractor-decisions, etc.  Scott will do the homework, narrow choices, and then run then by me. This way, we are both doing what we do best but still working together!

Here are a few of my Favorite Interior Color Palettes. Waiting on Scott’s OK.

Master Bedroom


Dining & Living Room ACCENT ONLY Colors (Taupe, Cinnamon, Browns, Navy)


Spare Bedroom – The BLUE ROOM


Spare Bedroom – The ROSE ROOM






Sun-Room Kitchen Eating Area

EXTRA Ordinarily Yours

Shed Demo

The House on High Street

We weren’t planning on taking on any outdoor projects quite yet, but the insurance company insisted that the dilapidated portion of the (back in the day) ice-house was a risk they weren’t interested in insuring.

Before and After

The dilapidated portion of the Ice House. Before removal.
After it was removed.
Before. I know. It looks like a bunch of termites holding hands. : /=
Do you see the potential of that beautiful stone beneath the cement? We did. : )
We’ll miss you. Dilapidated portion.
Bye-bye. No more dilapidated portion. LOL


Learning to Sew

The House on High Street
Ok, it’s official. I finally purchased my Birthday Gift from Mom and Dad…a sewing machine. After months of research, reading, email dialogues, visiting manufacturers, etc…

I decided upon the Brother Innov’is 1250D. This machine sews, quilts, and performs embroidery. Yes, Disney embroidery. So, my goal is to be making quilts, window treatments, clothes, and adding uniquely embroidered designs to my creations. I am more than excited!

For those of you who know me, you understand that I have a tendency to advance rather quickly in the domestic department. A gift I shall attribute to God. I’m thankful because it will certainly come in handy now that I am making more things by hand.

Sewing has been on my bucket list for many, many years. I have always wanted to design clothes. I have always felt a bit disgruntled whenever I purchased an item that was merely the closest I could find to the idea and quality I would have preferred. I’m not trying to discredit my favorite retailers and brands. There are some really good ones out there! But, it seems like more often than not, I am settling.

So, here I am…at 41. Not sure if I’m taking on this hobby a little too late…or a little too soon??

Last night, my brother-in-law called me “old lady” when I mentioned how excited I was to get a sewing machine. Don’t worry, seamstresses. I put him in his place. And, I promised myself that I WILL create a beautiful velvet dress for his daughter next year. My brother-in-law HATES velvet.  It makes him cringe. LOL

Also, I know my husband will be critically looking over my shoulder for the next several months keeping me accountable to produce quality garments, window treatments, etc. that will justify the cost of this piece of merchandise.

Hey, it’s my birthday money! I could have used it to buy clothes or jewelry. At least I invested in a gift that will keep on giving!

Ok, wish me luck. I know I have my work cut out for me. It all begins with opening this ever-so -intimidating, over-sized box glaring at me on our kitchen table. Well, I shouldn’t say “glaring”…I mean, Mickey looks fairly harmless and somewhat inviting.

Here goes nothing…

Flat Roof Coating

The House on High Street

Oct 27 Decisions… re-coat, re-roof on top of old, tear off and re-roof new, change roof pitch, or add new type of roofing material. With a slew of other projects that required funds, Scott and I decided to re-coat the roof, since the current roof was in OK condition. (Per 2 roofing companies’ opinions and that of our home inspector.)

Starting a Home Renovation

The House on High Street

During the past 2 weeks, we have been doing more “behind the scenes” work in preparing for the renovations of The House on High Street. Such as… completing loan applications from a few banks; interviewing contractors; building a portfolio of ideas, meeting with an architect, making dozens of lists (from budgetary to DIY project lists); and of course, arguing over just about every detail (we are learning how to have productive arguments)… 

My Kitchen. My Gift.

The House on High Street

Today, as I sit here in my haven in our Beach Condo (which will be sold next week), I reflect on the bittersweet feelings in letting go and moving on. As I watch the calming waters of the ocean in front of me, listen to the seagulls around me, and breathe in the salt air… I close my eyes and begin to dream of the next chapter in my life.

We are finally buying our very own home. A 200-year old fixer-upper on a pristine street lined with trees and beautiful houses, in a quaint picturesque neighborhood. Selling this condo here is buying our home there. It’s a bittersweet exchange. No more beach view and daily walks along the ocean.  It’s time to let go, and look forward to something new

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