When you read this I’ll be in New York looking at the renovations to our summer cottage in person. But since there’s an excellent chance the Internet won’t be working–along with the kitchen and any number of other basics–I thought I’d blog ahead of time to let you see more photos of our work in progress. Then when the finished product is revealed you can breathe a sigh of relief along with me.

So without further ado, here are some updates. If you haven’t been following along, just click on Renovations under categories to your right, and you’ll see what I’ve posted thus far.

Here are some shots of the back of our house. We had a smidgen of room allowable–restrictions are tight in this community–but we were able to build two bathroom-closet combinations, one on top of the other. Each connects to a bedroom which will no longer have a closet built into the room taking up space. Remember this house was built in Victorian times when closets (in some places at least) were taxed as rooms. Or thought of as unnecessary. Take your pick. When added later, they took up half the bedrooms.

Okay, here's the back of our house before the addition was added.

Okay, here’s the back of our house before the addition went on.

And here the back addition begins

And here the back addition begins 

And here we go.  The windows you see are matched by two below.  Since I only thought there was one window here, I'll be interested to see what this looks like inside.

Here we go. The windows you see are matched by two below. Since I only thought there was one window here, I’ll be interested to see what this looks like inside.

And do you remember what our kitchen looked like? There were three rooms opening into each other. One was actually a kitchen, one a utility room and one a laundry area where I was often forced to make dinner since I had no other counter space. Here’s a recap, then you’ll see the room’s been opened into one larger area. The washer and dryer will be stacked where the fridge used to be and out of the way. I opted for no upper cabinets–ask me how I like that in a year–and cottagey shelves on brackets. Our architect decided to put them across some of the windows. There’s no view except the wall of the house next door, but now we’ll have light and lots of jars filled with goodies.

Here's the best view I have of the three-room kitchen.  The doorway leads to a utility room, and you can't see the washer and dryer to the right.

Here’s the best view I have of the three-room kitchen. The doorway leads to a utility room, and you can’t see the washer and dryer in an alcove to the right.

And here's the former utility room and washer/dryer area beside it.  Love these bitty windows for air and light.

And here’s the former utility room and washer/dryer area beside it. Love these bitty windows for air and light.

And lest you think I renovated a cottage without beadboard?  Think again.  Lots and lots of beadboard.

And lest you think I renovated a cottage without beadboard? Think again. Lots and lots of beadboard. 

Here's what they had to work with when they began to open the kitchen into one room.

Here’s what they had to work with when they began to open the kitchen into one room.

One of the best features of this house is a big open porch on the side.  We eat all our meals there, entertain, it’s my favorite spot.  Above it was a glassed-in porch with windows that swung out and locked in place with a peg–at least a few did–and a sagging flat ceiling.  But the view out of the multiple windows is wonderful, and the room is large.  Next to the kitchen, the biggest and best changes were made here.

Here's what our sunroom looked like before the demolition began.  Flat, sagging ceiling.

Here’s what our sunroom looked like before the demolition began. Flat, sagging ceiling. 

And here's the demolition.  Most of this wood had to be replaced because it had rotted.

And here’s the demolition. Most of this wood had to be replaced because it had rotted. 

And I'll leave you with a view of the new sunroom in process, with "cathedral ceilings and windows that open.  Can't tell you how amazing that will be.

And I’ll leave you with a view of the new sunroom in process, with “cathedral” ceilings that won’t leak now, and windows that open. Can’t tell you how amazing that will be. 

I’m told the most dangerous phrase when a renovation is in progress is “while you’re in there. . .” And so we’ve been in danger since the beginning. This was an old house and we knew when we opened it up, not everything we would find would be pretty. Originally I asked my wonderful architect and contractor to replace the awful insulation board walls and renovate the kitchen and add a bathroom. I got a new roof line, a gazillion new windows, insulation, air-conditioning, heat–for the first time, new walls, a sunroom with a cathedral ceiling, two baths and two new closets. Plus, oh, new floors and appliances and . . . The list goes on and on.

Am I sorry? I don’t think so. But then, I haven’t seen it yet. Ask me next week. Stay tuned.

9 Comments

  1. Dee Winter on May 14, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    It’s going to lovely. You’ll love it, all homes have things we thought we’d love but don’t. But that will be part of it’s charm.

  2. Casey on May 14, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    It looks amazing! Can’t wait to see it in person. So glad you’re loving it!

  3. Terry Guerra on May 14, 2013 at 5:18 pm

    I bet it’s going to be beautiful- just wait and see!

  4. Pam Reed on May 14, 2013 at 8:16 pm

    With all those windows – I wish I were better at my stained glass – I’d make you something! Maybe down the road when I have more classes under my belt. I feel you’ve given me so much in your books and stories, I’d like to give something back!

    • Emilie Richards on May 14, 2013 at 9:01 pm

      What a lovely sentiment. I hope you enjoy your classes and have fun with your new craft, Pam.

  5. Jean Goodwin on May 15, 2013 at 5:53 pm

    This is so much fun! My favorite TV show is Love it or List it on HGTV – all about whether to buy new or renovate. Many of the homes are old and there are always unplanned for (and unbudgeted for) problems. Your reno is wonderful to watch. Jean

  6. Beverly on May 15, 2013 at 6:46 pm

    It’s like HGTV!! We went through an addition about 20 years ago, added 2 big bedrooms with walk-in closets and a bathroom with double sinks, a shower and separate spa tub to our 1976 tract home. It was one of the best things we did. Your addition will be such a blessing, and a new open kitchen will be so awesome. I love seeing the progress.

    • Emilie Richards on May 15, 2013 at 9:50 pm

      Always good to know about a real success. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Lynn Ross on May 16, 2013 at 1:42 am

    Renovations can be a nightmare, but I just know this one will be a sweet dream when it’s done. I think it’s wonderful.

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