Akram's Ideas
wall repairs

The Unexpected Home Improvement Project

With so many home improvement projects still in the queue it’s left me asking the question, where did summer go?

I mean can you believe that it’s already September? I feel like I didn’t really get to enjoy much of July and August and now their gone.

As you may have noticed it’s been pretty sparse here on the blog lately. The home improvement/remodel projects have kept me pretty busy. Then the start of the fall semester kind of just snuck up on me.

My big list of home improvement/remodel project started back in May (with this post here). I was quite ambitious and had lots planned. I also knew that it wasn’t going to happen over night and our goal was to have everything done by Thanksgiving.

By the end of June I gave a quick update on the progress of our projects (you can read that here). Needless to say that it has been slow going.

Now that September is upon us I thought it was time for yet another quick update. Where should I begin?

At the moment the attic project is on hold. By July the weather had gotten far too hot for us to even consider going up into the attic, so we decided to hold off for cooler temperatures.

Our dining room and kitchen were our next big project on our list. First we decided to come up with a plan of how we wanted to remodel the rooms and what all we wanted to add and remove. After a few weeks of planning and budgeting we decided to purchase some cabinetry from Home Depot.

The cabinets would have to be ordered and while it would be a some time before they arrived, I decided we might as well work on that spare room downstairs. This room would be my new sewing room. All it needed was a little paint. I also planed on reusing the current kitchen cabinets in this room so I thought we could paint the room and move the cabinets. This way we’d have one room done and the cabinets in the kitchen removed and ready for the new ones.

If only things went the way you planned. The sewing room painting was going really well, until we got to the last wall. As we made our way to the last wall, I decided that I wanted to replace the trim around the window. So we started by taking the window trim down and low and behold it crumbled to dust.

Eaten wall
The window trim and surrounding wall turning to dust.

Now, granted we knew that the house had previously had termite damage, and that it was centralized in that room along that wall, but we had no idea the extent.

When the window trim turned to dust my hubby decided to investigate just how bad the damage was, and that is when our small paint project became a wall replacement project.

The majority of the vertical beams were eaten all the way up to the second floor. The batten boards and plaster were all but dust as we just lightly taped the wall with a hammer.

Damage all the way up
The damage went all the way up to the floor of the second floor.

It took two days or so to take down the whole wall and do some clean up. It was also at this time my hubby took a good look at the French doors that was the entry into the room. It was determined that they were not original and that the doors were not only widened but the window above the doors that cut into the horizontal beam in the ceiling, which again holds up the second floor bathroom. This meant that the door and the beam on that wall would also need to be reinforced and replaced.

The support beam had been cut to install these doors

Before we could really get a handle on this new and completely unexpected project, it was time for school to start again. Thus, we’ve been working all day teaching class only to come up and work on our wall.

Luckily we’ve finally at the point were the wall is reinforced and we are not afraid of falling through the bathroom upstairs. We still need to put up plywood and drywall, but soon there will be a wall in there again.

eaten wood
A view of how bad the boards were eaten

Since this project has taken so long, and being a sort of priority due to the extent of the wall damage, all other projects have been on hold.

While it was very disappointing that this small paint project became major carpentry repair, it is lucky that we found it before we were in the tub and the floor decided to give way.

Reenforced studs
Reenforced studs in place

I’m also glad that while me and my hubby are by no means carpenters we were (mostly my hubby that is) able to make the needed repairs. 

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Akram Taghavi-Burris

designer, writer, educator, tech nerd, crafter, baker, sewer and vintage collector, who Brings Creative & Crazy Ides to Life.

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