Thursday, February 25, 2016

HOW TO BUILD A HOUSE

    Or rather, how NOT to build a house.


Learn your lessons by someone else's sad story, In this case, from me. Now, don't get me wrong, i am VERY excited to be building a house. But for us.... How shall I put this... The "City" actually hates us. I MIGHT be putting it rather strongly but it's not too far off from the major "dislike" that we get. Lets start from the beginning.
Once upon a time. A LONG time ago, we discovered a tract of land that was being developed to be ready for purchase. It had half the price tag of the going rate for developed lots in the area. So, the price was right, the location was close to family and friends and this was great! Lucky us, we got first pick of all the lots. Though we could have had any, we still had a budget to stick to so we picked the one we felt was the best fit for that. And no complaints of course, we have a full acre to split with my brother. BUT, this is where it all began.
 To be Able to afford the lot, we collaborated with my brother and decided to build a duplex townhouse. This required separate lines, so double for everything. We bought the lot with cash so we could use that  as a down payment of sorts to qualify for the building loan at the bank. Bank approves the plan and tells us we need to send our house plans to the city for approval and adjustments if any.
this was in September of 2014. So, into the City offices we go, and they ask "Who's your builder?". Red flag to us, the "City" didn't like our builder due to a building that was built before the city was even a city and had some adjustments when the rules changed and things didn't go well. So that was that. BUT THEN, we decided to use buildbloc. AKA, foam forms to build our house. Again the "City" was like we don't know anything about this type of house. Umm, yes, yes you do. See our builder that they don't like? He has built one, which is why he is our builder to begin with. He has built it IN the "City" that claims to not know anything about it and also doesn't like our builder. And on top of this, they don't know how to place our house into a category for evaluation because it is a duplex. Whaaa? This "City" is FULL of them. We know, because we have looked at them. 
And so began a LONG process of  us sending revised and re-revised plans to the city from our architect and back again. so fast forward to september 2015 and hooray! Good news, finally. the City has approved our plans! we have a building permit!
    This is good news but was not where the story got better. You see, the bank now wants us to resubmit everything to be approved for the loan because apparently pre-approved bank loans expire after 6 months and we are long past that mark. It's not just a matter of using the same paperwork either. Don't ask why because I don't know and I was too mad to care. So again we submit all of our check stubs, tax returns and etc from the last two years. All done! Whew. Or so we thought. Turns out our Loan Broker is just a middle man. He is not authorized to approve loans and we literally never see or even know of the one who is. So weeks of asking the Loan broker if we can build now and his answer was always the same. basically "no" was the answer. So, we had our third baby NOT in our new house and our two bedroom rental was now cramped even more.

     Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year.. nothing. Then, we get a notification from the city saying our permit expires in two weeks, January 13, if we don't build soon. UGH! no loan and almost no permit too! Relaying this message to our loan broker, along with the added note the we want them to pay for the renewal fee if we don't get it in time. Building permits are not free guys! But instead of getting the loan, he contacts the city to postpone the date to February 13. Well the expiration date is farther away but what we wanted was a loan!  The end of January was close and we felt exhausted from doing nothing. An odd way to feel. But, suddenly things happened! We are approved! Ben and my Bro went to the bank sign as many pages as a Jane Austen novel but lacking in any good story line. Basically prosecution to the full extent of the law if we fail to comply to pay for it. but whatever, it's all out of the way and we can finally build! 

But first, we dig a hole. check it out!




video

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Preview of a big thing

I know that it would look a lot better finished and all but i am too excited to wait till it is all finished to show it off! here is the new bed we are working on. chek it out!
Everything is all cut and put together but we still have to stain it and then bring it home from the shop. Oh and since it is a king we will have to get new mattresses. when this comes home i will show the real detail with an actual camera rather than a phone pic.But hey! It's getting there. So what do ya think? 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

I Envy Table Legs

        Legs are important you know. When it comes to furniture, I like items that have slender legs. I don't much care for chubby legs. I don't mean to say that EVERYTHING must have legs. Sid from Toy story had the genius idea to add slender legs where none were before.. ha! hilarious. Even though it is not furniture, the idea is the same. As funny as it would look, a fishing pole has no use for legs.



         So lets look at another example, while a sofa doesn't NEED legs, it really does look nicer with legs.


same couch but it has a different look and feel without the feet. But then there are other styles where things just don't have legs and they're preferred that way, such as a Japanese dining room.



       
     So where is the balance? I honestly don't know, but I like something to have the illusion that is is smaller than it actually so that is can make a space look and feel larger than it really is. Legs or no legs this can be done. but with so many options its hard to know what needs legs and what doesn't. If things are all the same height it would just feel weird. As of right now, the living room is all one height, and that is because there are only two things in there. A couch and a coffee table. There's a rug too but that has zero height so it doesn't count.  So i have plans for the living room. One is to change the rug to something like this one.
This is a Shyrdak rug. All these rugs are hand crafted and no two are exactly the same. It would be nice to have one someday. 


I found this exact side table at a thrift store a bit ago and doesn't it just have such nice legs? Am i weird to envy the legs on a table, i mean look at them, they taper so nicely!


Came close to scoring this from Anthropologie for a killer $20! my hesitation was ill timed... I should have purchased it before browsing the rest of the goods and just made more transactions. GRRR!  However, i do comfort myself that i could easily make it since i already have a lamp kit from IKEA.
Anyway, that is all for now.

Side notes:
  • contemplating whether i should use removable vinyl on the walls since i can't paint.
  • Learning how to use more settings and dad's canon  I Shoot People with My Canon




Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Towels.

      Yep. That is actually all I have to say. Towels. this picture below speaks for itself so need I say anything at all? This towel rack was from the bachelor pad Ben lived with before we were married and it has come in good use. A place to put towels is always useful. But this one was ugly. Nowhere to hang the wet ones meant that we just draped them over the dry ones, sometimes three or four at a time and that was dumb since the dry ones were wet now too. Worse was that they would sometimes fall onto the toilet and i am surprised  they haven't ever fallen IN! Gross to think about..  


I wanted this problem fixed and so I took measurements of the blank wall and decided on a placement for the new rack I would soon be making. Soon as in, buy three hooks i liked on sale for $3.50 but i needed five so i had to wait for more and for the next 50% off sale making it about a four week wait there. plus i couldn't seem to find small enough screws. Hobby Lobby doesn't provide the screws so i had to go to home depot twice becasue the first time they were still too large. 
Awe! It's like the sun is shining in there with the rack gone. Even though it doesn't have a window, the natural light is able to bounce off the mirror when the door is open.




The artwork is simple for now. The artist? I had them done by Logan. A Little hard to see in the pics but this one is his favorite. He is learning to draw circles and this one is his best attempt at them haha. Whenever he has a potty break from his back breaking job (mommy's breaking back) of being a two year old, then he pauses for a sec to admire it. The frames are just from the dollar store for how much? One dolla each!






Logan thought it was funny that i was standing in the tub to take pictures and thought he would join me.
There it is. simple and neat. Towels hang whether they are wet or dry. Its also nice when the door is open you don't see them at all. I prefer to keep the door closed since the bathroom is happily situated right in the middle of the house with the door opening to the living room/kitchen area. Yeah i don't know who's idea it is to always put a bathroom right in the open like you're two and still announcing you "have to go potty!" because everyone knows when you do... awkward pause when the toilets flushes anyone?

On a happier note, Harper is now seven months old! Yes time flies, and not just because i forgot to post her six month photo. i have it, just haven't gotten the right sd card in the computer right now. woops.


i noticed that she is looking more like Logan but definitely more bald and more wiggly than he was at this age. She is also still toothless where Logan Had his first tooth at six months on the day, she still has yet to get one. But i am all happy with that since she is still nursing.  

Side notes:
  • Logan's room just might be getting a new bed. Big boy bed is in the planning phase. 
  • My door, now turned bed is now at the shop just waiting for stain and assembly. I can't wait!
  • I am learning more about woodworking and techniques for renewing old pieces.
  • Logan is Learning to count and say his ABC's
  • Harper is learning to crawl. Ha! Part army crawl, pushup and a dive at the end! Logan jumps up and down to clap saying "Baby crawled!" 
Well that's all for now! i will be posting soon one the bed and some things i learned to make the process easier.


Saturday, December 14, 2013

Christmas cards

Merry Christmas!
Love the Herberts

well this is our christmas card this year. last year it was just a photo and i still have all of them because i forgot to actually give them out. what to do with them now? Oh well. but in the past few months Harper has grown to five months old with Logan Photo bombing every time. Ha! and a picture of what happens when i put him down for a nap.. why i bother folding his clothes is unknown to even me. habit maybe.
Anyway.
Happy holidays! 



5 months

4 months
3 months

photo bomber

and she thinks she can suck her thumb... awe so cute!

photo bomber

photo bomber. see a pattern here? ha so funny.

nap time. covered in clothes instead of blanket







Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Logan's second year of monthly photos

this is on his birthday, he wasn't too happy about me saying "happy birthday" but then you can see he's plenty happy to have birthday cake. i just made very dark chocolate mini cakes with vanilla mouse and strawberry sauce and Ben and i sang since his party was going to be a different day.
i made him a tractor cake and i'll show pics of that later.



24 months

13 months

14 months

15months

16 months


17months

18 months

19 months

20 months

21 months


22 months


 23 months


Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Goofy Logan

Logan has a pretty good sense of humor and these are some of his favorite pictures of himself  and he laughs hysterically  whenever we show him. i even laugh as hard!