November 12, 2008

First Fall Project Done, New Heating System!

Peter replaced the entire heating system!

This all began with PSE&G running an underground natural gas line from across busy Valley Road to the house. Pete ran a new gas line in the house, with the help of Uncle Tim's Ridgid pipe-threader. Then, Pete removed the old steam system, which had been working hard since the Roosevelt Administration, totaling about 2000 pounds of metal at the scrapyard (and $95 for Abby's redecorating fund ;-)
After closing the old radiator holes in the wall, Pete installed hot water baseboard heat throughout the house. The last step was furnace installation, thank you Dave Rousch!
In process, Pete replaced the old hot water heater (which had been in hospice care since we moved in 2 years ago) was also replaced. The top picture is the new boiler & hot water heater, our Christmas gifts to each other... I will never take heat or hot water for granted again!

We spent a bit more than this, but, we made $300 selling the "antique" radiators on craigslist! We still have one left , first come, first serve...! Not everyone at once please.

Getting ready for Baby~ October Demo Day!

The weekend the demo of our 2nd bedroom (formerly known as Abby's dressing room...) in preparation for our new little Hansen! :-) We tore down the old walls, old insulation, old windows... basically if it was there, it's GONE. Now Peter is in the re-building phase, installing new electrical, new windows, new insulation... you get the idea. I am busy flipping through magazines for Nursery decoration inspiration (I am much better at this than, say, installing a dimmer switch.) We have GREAT friends!!! In the pictures you will see Ryan, Josh, Jeff, and Pete's dad "Turo" who were all part of the weekend team. Thanks guys!! Would have been most definitely impossible without you! Yes, Peter even may admit it, he needed help to complete all that!

More House Demo... How do I put up with this?

Sara keeps me company :-)

Pete & Jeff Allen, doing whatever it is they do back there.

Josh Gill & Turo tearing a hole into the side of our house (and then filling it in with a window)

November 2008 Baby-Moon to Rincon, Puerto Rico!!

Our B & B, sooo adorable!

Lunch at "Tamboo" Bar & Grill, great burgers, even better ocean view!

Pete swimming outside our room. The mountains & ocean were a great backdrop!

Believe me, this was a "highlight" shot of Pete surfing :-) Maybe next year he'll enter competition? Or perhaps stick to skiing & wakeboarding.

No, we did not enroll.

Out to dinner!

The rum punch was tasty (I heard)!

Note the 20 week old baby I'm carrying :-)

June 05, 2008

Kitchen Completed!

We finally got around to taking the "after" pictures of our kitchen. Our first meal in the new space was Christmas Eve, and we've been enjoying it ever since! It bears absolutely no resemblance to old the house! New windows, no windows, new doors, no doors, new walls, no walls... the list of changes goes on & on.
I can you with absolute pride that Contractor Peter did everything... except for install the granite slab. Electrical, plumbing, carpentry & cabinets (Ryan Smerillo helped a TON with this!), painting, tiling, appliance installation... and there are probably about a thousand things I forgot to say!
We'd also like to give a shout-out to Jason at our local Home Depot, for his assistance with everything from cabinet measurements to 10% off coupons, as both are equally important! Jason, along with the guy from the granite place, the Long Hill Township home inspectors, the woman on the phone from that I got to know a little too well, everyone at Ted's Appliance-A-Rama in Plainfield, Tony the dumpster guy who hauled away tons of our debris, and the UPS delivery-man that brought all the lighting to the wrong house where it sat for 2 weeks... Thank You! :-) Peter is pretty amazing at this stuff, he gets the biggest shout-out of all!

The above picture shows what used to be a solid wall, and enclosed the old kitchen.

Archway, begone! There used to be an archway to "enter" the little hallway. It was a cute feature, but with Peter & I both on the tall side, a pain in the neck... ha ha ... ;-)


This was my HGTV-esque project on a budget... the table was a garage-sale $5 pick up that I painted black, the chairs were from my family's old kitchen table set, also painted... the bench from Pete's Grandma's house... you get the idea! :-) The door to the living room, however, brand new! The boarded-up area on the left is the old door to the kitchen, now closed in. We enjoy eating dinner out here, and it provides additional space when we have guests over.

My Husband, Ax-Man

Peter, his dad, and our friend Jeff Allen have spent the past few Saturdays in May, and now June, doing some heavy-duty work in our back-forest, I mean back-yard... someday! Jeff is a Vermont native, so has experience in this type of deforestation :-)
Our back property is overgrown with very tall evergreens, with no grass to be seen! Each windy day we've watched the trees with trepidation. So the trees are now falling on our watch....! Ladders, chainsaws, ropes and pulleys, the neighbors must think we're nuts.
I know it appears that these trees are almost a 100 feet tall, because THEY ARE! Peter is the red speck waaaaay up high. Wearing not one, but two harnesses. I usually stick around till he is on the ground, pretending to be occupied with something other than worrying myself to death! ;-)

December 18, 2007

Saturday's Cabinet Installation~ Peter, His Pops, and the Smerillo's!

It was a long day but so worth it! Ryan Smerillo came over early, coffee in hand, and got right down to work. Well, Ryan & Peter got to work, Kristin & I headed to the mall with Carrie & Sara :-) Ryan is a professional cabinet installer, talk about friends with benefits!! Between Saturday & Sunday, Pete got all of the cabinets installed, and the microwave, stove, refrigerator, and dishwasher are in place. We are having both of our families over for Christmas Eve, just one week away from yesterday! It's exciting!

December 10, 2007

All-Star Weekend!

Peter... barely slept! He finished spackeling the ceiling & walls, sanded them down, and painted the ceiling. A.K.A Hansen Dust Bowl 2007...

He also stripped the wood floors, made a mad dash to Home Depot to return the sander by 6 pm on Sunday night, and then stained the new floors! You liquid folks may recognize his T-Shirt of choice for that activity...

The last picture is my attempt at Christmas decorations for this year! No tree, living or dead, would survive a day in our house
right now! :-)