The cat wants to be in the first load (along with the liquor)...
First, an update on the items of concern moving in: the floors, the gas, the internet, and the cooktop.
Being Mr. Barefoot, I noticed that the floors seemed rougher than they should with little stalagmites every six inches or so. We mentioned this to the builder ("Are you sure the floors are done?"). We didn't hear anything back until late in the afternoon before the big move-in day (we had already been moving art and liquor in [priorities, you know...]) when the floor folks showed up to refinish the floors (the builder had sent an email earlier in the day, but we hadn't been checking).
That was depressing. That floor stuff totally stinks (like, literally). The previous layer took three days to outgas, and we were moving in the next day. However, it turned out to be a thin refinishing layer and didn't stink nearly as much as the previous layer. Floor problem solved (just in time!).
The gas company turned on the gas late on move-in day and the plumbing sub showed up at 7:00 pm to connect the on-demand water heater. Talk about cutting it close! Fortunately, everything worked and we had (our first) hot shower (or any shower of note) at the house. It was heaven.
The internet turned out to not be as bad as I had feared. The installer arrived on Wednesday and, as expected, wanted to aerially drop the line to the house. After saying "Nope, that ain't gonna happen." and describing what we wanted, he said he wasn't prepared to bury the line and that it would be another week before the line-burying folks could be there. "Can't you just leave it on top of the mulch for now?" Turned out the answer was yes (They are concerned about lawn mowers, but since we have no lawn to speak of, he was amenable). An hour later, we had internet. Yay! A few days later a burier came and (no joke) simply "buried" (covered, really...) the line under the mulch, just above the weed barrier.
The cooktop is still not connected, and we are on the hunt for another regulator. Looks like I'm going to have to figure this out and finish the installation...
Gots no gas to the cooktop...
How's the house, you ask? We're totally loving it! It's a little weird, after all this time, finally moving in. It's also rather swank (in a good way) for a couple of low-renters. After living in (and enjoying) a compact setting at the apartment, I wondered if we'd miss that intimacy. However, the house works well at keeping that intimacy (everything is close to the kitchen heart of the floorplan) and yet providing an ample amount of space for us to do our thing. As the bride points out, our house (2,300 square feets) is considered small by many, but it is ample space.
Since the gate is not yet finished, one of the first things we did was occlude the skeleton so folks would be less tempted to walk into the back yard (there are lots of lookie-loos at the house...). I was going to put up a sign that said "Unless you want to see middle-aged people naked, we advise you turn around." but then realized that there are folks out there that want to see middle-aged people naked. Since we don't want to meet these people, we instead "wrapped" the gate in wrapping plastic. It's actually kinda cool, truth be told...
To add some sanity to the insanity of moving, we worked hard to get the kitchen, dining, living, and master bedroom in working order as soon as possible.
The cat lays claim to the bed on our first night in the house.
Dining room (plan to get better end chairs; thinking Eames...)
Living room with the Eileen Gray Flor rug and the neoplastic coffee table. Plan on replacing the settee in the foreground with a Corbusier/Perrand love seat.
Another view of the coffee table...
Still working on the bookcases...
The Eileen Gray table.
The kitchen (where the minimalism stops, my friends...). In the forefront are the semi-custom Barbara stools from local furniture maker RAD. They were kind enough to work with us to replace their standard walnut with cypress.
If our kitchen has a decorating theme, it's a fusion of the beauty of food with the sciency feel of a laboratory (because what is cooking but gastronomical chemistry?) The open shelves are there in part to showcase ingredients.
Just like Portlanders, we kinda dig the birds. Here are some shots of a couple birds we placed in the living room. The hanging black bird is a raven we bought in Iceland several years back. The raven has special meaning to Icelanders because legend has it that the first horn-headed settlers avoided starving to death by following a raven to the island. We also have a rocking bird picked up on sale at West Elm.
The raven casts the coolest shadows in the house as it chases the morning sun.
That bird totally rocks.
Got the office somewhat set up last night (hence this present hen pecking).
"They say people in glass houses can't throw stones. People in glass houses can't walk around naked either!" says the bride. After moving in, it quickly became apparent that we needed window coverings of some sort. Because of the immediate need for coverings, we were inspired by our friends Mr. B. and Ms. M. who have adorned their windows in their modern loft thusly:
Very nice. There's poetry in how the tape is placed and the paper just stops short of filling the entire window.
And here is our interpretation:
We used green tape instead of blue so our friends wouldn't think we had totally stolen the idea from them. We also used part of a Container Store advertisement as part of the "curtain".
We also did some half-assed curtains with pushrods by quickly chopping pre-made curtains from a big box store to "fit". We'll need to upgrade at some point (soon...), but for now, they work!
We made our first meal on the fourth: peppers roasted in the oven and duck and guinea hen baked in the horno.
We then walked down the street to watch a neighbor's electronically controlled Fourth of July display in his front yard. Awesome!
With the cooktop out of commission, we pulled the gas grill out of storage and bought a cast iron skillet (not sure why we haven't had one of these before...) and roasted up some peppers and onions and eggs for breakfast last Sunday:
And we had our first guests over on Sunday evening, the swell folks from the Green House around the corner. We drank pink wine enjoyed with tomato and fig tortes.
And here's dinner last night. Yep, the kitchen is working great!
We've had a few minor surprises. The ovens were too small for the hole (better than too big...):
Note gaps on sides.
Not sure what happened here, but I have a vague recollection of wanting to leave the cabinets at a standard width to allow more standard width ovens to fit in the future.
The other surprise was that the in-wall plug for the television was dead:
That plug hanging down from the telly shouldn't need to be there...
Whelp, there you have it! Pretty much moved in! We've gotten some requests to keep blogging as we get settled in and decorate and whatnot. Plus, we still have solar and rainwater to install (as well as more of the landscaping). We'll also continue to check out architecture during our travels, another reason to keep posting.
We'll keep posting if you keep reading!