Saturday, March 29, 2014

In which we go back in time and review....and look forward too!

This is Greg's concept drawing that he did last June when we went in front of the In Town Design Review Committee in order to get a building permit.  At this point, we didn't know that we needed an architect to draw up official stamped plans. I love this drawing, Greg did such a nice job and we were kind of bowled over as to how the old girl would be transformed....we kind of didn't believe it could happen and look this good.

And today....pretty good...the dormers got tweaked for the better and the color will be different (still too bad in my mind), the windows had to be sized down a tad. but we stuck with our original vision for the building and I think it is coming out really well. 

This is my new favorite view

It is kind of still astonishing to me that we are doing this, that we have gone from this photo to the one above in what seems like a relatively short time.

The boys started the porch yesterday!

Thursday, March 27, 2014

In which we play "Throwback Thursday"

Throwback Thursday to over a year ago. 
the third floor

More of the third floor 

The second floor rear

The cardboard apartment.


In which it is time to change our name

The time has come to say goodbye to Slum and Blight.  

The old girl is going back to an earlier time and will be called The Ocean House.

In the photo at the top of this page you can just make out a sign over the door on the second floor that reads "Ocean House Hotel" and it is to this era that we are harkening back. 

Thank you all for your kind words and support.  A passerby called us heros of downtown Belfast today.  While I am not sure about that, it brought smiles to our faces and made our day...thank you very much for your comment!  We love to hear good words, it keeps us going.  

Please welcome back The Ocean House to downtown Belfast! 

In which we start focusing on the inside again.....

This entry will be a bit convoluted as I am showing photos from all over the building, but the work inside is spread out like that.  Interior walls are being put up, the stairs in the apartment are in and looks great (the railing is temporary, for the safety of the guys), the electricians started roughing in wiring yesterday, working off of Greg's electrical plan, and we are talking about heating systems and such.  
In the photo below, I am standing in what will be the living room, looking East towards the downstairs bedroom which has one of the best views, besides the upstairs bathroom, which has the BEST view of the harbor. 

We gave up on our plan to board a lot of the apartment in favor of dry wall.  It is a bit of a scaling back of the plan, but we will save enough money to be able to do other things, like investigate solar panels to help pay for electricity costs. We will spend the money we save on the dry wall on good moldings, etc.  

Looking up the stairs to the very cool third floor.

One half of the master bedroom, taken from the stairway..  There is now a wall right in front of me in this photo.  

I showed a version of this photo before.  This is the entrance to the apartment from the mud room.  The stairs will stay exposed the way they are in this photo, which we love!

A shot of the living room which faces Main Street and is open to the kitchen (where I am standing).  The boarded up door will open out to the second floor of the front porch.  
 The LVL beam down the center of the space and it's corresponding LVL support beams will be cased in rough cut timber to add to the loft like appeal of the space.

One of my favorite details that the boys did to comply with the structural engineer's recommendation that the support posts for the overhead beams be beefed up to help carry the extra load of the third floor.  They had to add four inches to the front of the posts.  We decided on rough cut boards that bolt into the beams, They look awesome, so much so that I have to share three pictures of them! 

The last photo of the day is of the first floor center beams getting their "branch" support arms, another engineering requirement to help with the load of the upper floors.  I particularly like this shot of the open ceiling, which will stay that way.  Greg calls this shot "hanging to the left."  

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

In which we review some more

Just a couple of photos this morning before we get to work. The boys went to town on the front of the building yesterday, putting in new windows and taking off the moldings around the first floor facade in preparation for the porch.  

The old girl looks a bit saggy in the photo below.  

I have had several people remark to me that they had never noticed this building downtown before we started working on it. 

During....she is straight and tall and proud now....and lacking doors!

Most people I chat with about the place do not remember the barn at all.....I find that funny, since it was a 3000 sq. foot structure!

We have one more window to put in...hopefully, after the electrician comes today to move electrical box, the boys can replace that wall and get the window in.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

In which I am somewhat disappointed in our window choices.

I am disappointed with the windows on the lower level.  The mullions are going in a different direction because the windows are smaller,  a detail I missed when we ordered the windows.  I really want to replace them, but Greg told me that we would be the only ones who cared.  I am sure when the windows are trimmed out, we won't notice it as much, but for now, I have a bit of a heavy heart as this is my favorite view of the building.  P.S. I LOVE the rest of the windows and think they make the building look so gorgeous!  Never thought they would look this good!

Greg isn't a big fan of the small windows up the staircase in the addition, but I think they are cute and fine.  One doesn't see them from most sides of the building, so no big deal, and they add a lot of light to the stairs.

I wasn't liking this view of the building overall, but now I do.  Once the final wall is repaired and the last window frame installed (that section on the first floor between the blue board) I think the building will be gorgeous from this view.

Sorry for the cut off view here, but the sun tends to glare right off the side of the building here, making this photo an impossible one in the late afternoon winter sun.  Just wanted to show the lower level picture window that opens out to the parking lot.  Once the trees are trimmed or taken out, we will have a gorgeous view of the water in the summer from this window.

Just have to take down some of those limbs on that tree out there!

Saturday, March 22, 2014

In which I spend a quiet Saturday at Slum and Blight

I spent the morning shoveling shingles and other debris into the dumpster and cleaning up the place.  I also had a nice long visit with the new windows on the first floor and walked around the apartment, which is going to be a really nice space!
I love what the windows do for the first floor.  Keep in mind that it is kind of snowing out and these are the North windows.  

 Definitely going to have to prune that tree out back

The apartment is coming together.  Here is the entrance as seen from the mud room.  Nice wide entrance.  We liked the idea of keeping the stairs open so that light could filter through. 

Here we have the stairs going up to the third floor.  That is the kitchen to the right and straight ahead to the bedroom past the stairs.  I am standing in a corner of the living room

In which we build a master bedroom

I love these photos of the master bedroom.  With all its angles and light from the new windows, the room will be a wonderful place to stay, almost like an big perch way above the town.  

Not the best view to the South, but we could put the bed in this alcove and let morning sun stream in over our guests in the morning. 

I like this view up Pendleton Street.  If you look around there are at least three church spires poking up in the view from this window.

Great lines to the ceilings!

In which we got some new windows!

I left yesterday morning on a trip to Boston.  At 7am, I stopped by the building and the boys told me the window delivery was imminent.  I raced back to town this afternoon, cruising in 11 hours after leaving and this is what I found..... Brava, ole girl, way to shine!

This came out so much better than I had hoped.  The windows are fiberglass Integrity windows by Marvin and are powder coated on the exterior with the color "cashmere"

The first floor bedroom in the apartment has great views

I can't believe how awesome the top floor of the apartment is.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

In which we review......

This, my friends, is known as the prop-me up post.  Why?  Because here is where we see the before and during photos, lest we forget what a dump this place was not too too long ago.  

This was taken about four months before we actually bought the building.  I wanted the RV to go with the place, just so Greg and I would have somewhere to live with Miss Mae when we have to sell our house to pay for this puppy.  We never got the RV  :-(
Saggy old thing, ain't she?

And so tomorrow afternoon this roof will be all ready to go for the final layer.  Look how straight the building stands!

Oh my gosh, this looks like a bad 80s dance studio if I ever saw one!

 We still have a mighty long way to go, but what a difference!  This is really the same view as the photo above.

Ok, I love this comparison.  

I remember taking this picture and it seem like so long ago.

Here we are looking from the bathroom into the master bedroom (in my head) with dormers on both sides and a view straight up main street. 

My beloved basement!

 Certainly a work in progress