Week 19 — Finally finished?

There’s nothing like an entertaining deadline for providing the necessary motivation/panic required to finish a project.  In our case, I had planned a 70th birthday lunch for my Mom.  At least half the attendees had never been to our home, and the other half were eager to see the changes.  There was no way we wanted to be ‘under construction’ when the guests arrived.

First order of business for the week: finish that brick wall in the dining room!

Once the mortar dries -- it can take several days, depending on humidity levels -- it's time to seal it.

Once the mortar dries — it can take several days, depending on humidity levels — it’s time to seal it.  We can clean up the debris, but the tape and drop cloths have to stay.

This is the stuff we use to seal the brick. It keeps the mortar from flaking off every time someone touches it.  It also protects the brick from staining should flying food hit it.

This is the stuff we use to seal the brick. It keeps the mortar from flaking off every time someone touches it. It also protects the brick from staining should flying food hit it.  It has to be applied with a large paint brush.

Almost finished!  This step is much faster than adding the mortar.

Almost finished! This step is much faster than adding the mortar.

Unfortunately, when we pulled off the green tape, some of the paint went with it.  There must have been an area of new plaster that wasn't properly primed.  Now we have to fix this before we can put the room back together.  While we're at it, we need to clean up the rough edges along the baseboard.

Unfortunately, when we pulled off the green tape, some of the paint went with it. There must have been an area of new plaster that wasn’t properly primed. Now we have to fix this before we can put the room back together. While we’re at it, we need to clean up the rough edges along the baseboard.

Paint touch-ups are easy.  Thank goodness for my  husband's Dremel for those mortar edges, though!

Paint touch-ups are easy. Thank goodness for my husband’s Dremel for those mortar edges, though!

Next step: put the fireplace back on the wall.

Next step: put the fireplace back on the wall.

The dining room is finally back together!

The dining room is finally back together!

Now, on to the contractor’s punch list…

We can finally plug in the charger for our new stick vacuum, right in the cupboard.  We just needed a hole drilled in the bottom of the cupboard, so the electrical outlet from the panel in the basement could be fed through the hole.

We can finally plug in the charger for our new stick vacuum, right in the cupboard. We just needed a hole drilled in the bottom of the cupboard, so the electrical outlet from the panel in the basement could be fed through the hole.

It's been a long time coming, but we no longer have to look at a hole next to the chimney of our range hood.  No extra charge for the greasy fingerprints!

It’s been a long time coming, but we no longer have to look at a hole next to the chimney of our range hood. No extra charge for the greasy fingerprints!

Not a moment too soon!  Just in time to get party-ready….

It's not quite as messy as Thanksgiving prep, but it's still a workout for our new kitchen -- a full day of cooking and baking to prepare for our luncheon.

It’s not quite as messy as Thanksgiving prep, but it’s still a workout for our new kitchen — a full day of cooking and baking to prepare for our luncheon.

Once the cooking is done, it's time to rearrange the furniture to make space for 12 in the dining room.  Out with the regular dining table....

Once the cooking is done, it’s time to rearrange the furniture to make space for 12 in the dining room. Out with the regular dining table….

and in with the folding tables and extra chairs.  Twelve is definitely our limit for a sit-down meal!

and in with the folding tables and extra chairs. Twelve is definitely our limit for a sit-down meal!

We're ready! Seating aside, 12 is also the limit of my china supply.

We’re ready! Seating aside, 12 is also the limit of my china supply.

Success! A good time was had by all, and the rooms performed perfectly.  Oohs and ahhs were given and appreciated.

Back to normal -- but with party flowers.

Back to normal — but with party flowers, and leftover food.  

We moved this trunk out from under the TV to make space.  We like it so much here, we leaving it.  I've had it since I was 16, and I love the texture it brings to a space.

We moved this trunk out from under the TV to make space. We like it so much here, we leaving it. I’ve had it since I was 16, and I love the texture it brings to a space.

The best part of hosting a lunch instead of dinner?  We had time after everyone left to sort out this storage room.  It had become a dumping area for everything displaced or leftover from the renovation.

The best part of hosting lunch instead of dinner?  We had time after everyone left to finish sorting out this storage room.  It had become a dumping area for everything displaced or left over after the renovation.  And yes, that's my childhood doll buggy.

And yes, that’s my childhood doll buggy in the back corner.  I don’t know where to use it, but I can’t part with it.

There are still a few interior details to sort out…. nicer cover plates for the light switches (I hate white ones!), and a custom media cabinet to be designed and ordered.  For now, it’s time to get outside.  It’s already mid-November, but we just might have time to clean up the garden and rake the leaves before the snow flies! Then we can start planning our next fete, for Christmas…..

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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