Friday, September 9, 2011

House Tour: The Exterior

This is something I'd rather not show you.  We have improved thismuch of the outside of the property since we bought it 3 1/2 years ago.  It's basically in its original (bad) condition. 

The front of the house is shaded by four large oak trees (one is not pictured, it's just to the left of the frame).  I've got a love/hate relationship going on with them.  I love that they shade the house; that makes our summer electricity bills a lot easier to swallow.  I like the way they look, individually.  On the other hand, I don't like how close together they are planted and I HATE that they keep grass from growing.  In a perfect world, I would just transplant two of them to the backyard, which has no trees at all.  In the real world, they are still a problem we haven't yet figured out how to resolve.
See the lack of grass?  NOT fun to mow over this area.  Ouch!

You'll also notice the decrepit garage door, the dinky iron columns, and the dreary color palette.  Thankfully, we do have a plan for those problems.  More on that later. 
Look at that architecture.  (Thank goodness) they just don't make 'em like they used to.
We are currently in the process of re-installing the chain link fence.  It used to be all the way around the property.  I had two problems with that:
  1. We always left the gate open so we could drive in/out easily, meaning we may as well not have had a fence.
  2. It was ugly.
So we (I) decided that we should move the fence line back to meet the house.  We got a pretty good start on that, and then Madison was born.  I haven't let Pat work on the fence since; I'm too eager to do "my" projects while he's home. Which is kind of pathetic because finishing would take him maybe two hours, and it would improve the appearance of our property by about thirty-seven points.  Which is my way of saying a lot.
You can see a few things in the next picture.  First, no trees!!  Second, the porch is on temporary supports.  Third, the back of the house is b-o-r-i-n-g.   We plan to address all of the above.  You may also see the landscaping stones piled in front of the fence.  Those came from the old beds that we tore out, and we plan  to reuse them whenever we get around to landscaping.  In the meantime, I can just shudder and think about snakes every time I walk by.
 I thought I should end on a positive note, so take a look at that jewel of a light fixture!  Okay, if you haven't already "unfollowed" me, please know that I meant that in the most sarcastic way possible.  I plan to not only replace the light, but also to destroy it so as to ensure that it never disgraces some other poor unsuspecting house.
 Our Goals for the Exterior(in no particular order):
  • Trim the trees, have at least one tree removed.
  • Improve drainage in the front yard/elevate so grass can grow.
  • Replace the mailbox
  • Replace the garage door
  • Replace the roof
  • Paint (and buy new for back) shutters
  • Repaint door/molding
  • Finish fence
  • Plant trees in backyard
  • Build patio & canopy for backyard
  • Replace columns on front & back porches
  • Replace light fixture on front porch
  • Landscaping
  • Power wash siding
  • Install lattice along bottom of house (for looks and to keep Bella from escaping)
What do you think?  Have you ever had to deal with similar tree issues?  We really hate cutting down a healthy tree, but they are soclosetogether!!!  Are you stingy with your husband's time?  Do you have personal vendettas against any inanimate objects (like me with the light fixture)?  


P.S.  Madison did well at her doctor's appointment.  She is 85th, 95th, and 90th percentiles in her head circumference, weight, and length, respectively.  And she cried for less than a minute over the shots.  One lesson learned: I should bring my own band-aids.  They only had boyish ones.  :(


  1. Wow lots of good plans. BTW my light fixture is even uglier than yours. If you are going to just get rid of the columns, I would like to have them; I;m very old fashion; would use them in my garden (I think), only if you are getting rid of them. Yeah for the great doctor's visit. Yes, you absolutely must take appropriate bandaids next time. Madi, you are a very brave girl, Love ya, Grandma

  2. Thanks Dorothy, and you most certainly can have them!! We'll just have to figure out the transportation issue now that we are a truckless household. I can see those working well in a garden.

  3. Oops, forgot about no truck; but thanks, since we're not in a hurry, I'm sure we can figure something out.