Decisions, Decisions, Decisions for the Indecisive

At this point in the build, there are TONS of decisions to make. I’m currently contemplating cabinets, countertops, sinks and faucets.

We are going with white cabinets in the kitchen at 9 ft tall which will look somewhat like this. They won’t go all the way to the ceiling since our kitchen ceiling is 10 ft tall, however.

Traditional Kitchen by Millbrook Architects & Designers Crisp Architects

For countertops we have (read I have) gone back and forth between a gray and white carrara marble look in quartz or black granite.

For the marble look I’ve considered these.

Cambria Torquay – Has grey and tan veining. Cost is around $70 per foot, but you can get any edge your heart desires for no additional charge and undermount sink finishing is as cheap as $150 at a local shop.

Here’s a kitchen that shows the countertop.
Silestone Lagoon – Grayer than Torquay with subtle veining. Around $68.50 per foot installed.
You can see the grayer color compared to white cabinets.

Caesarstone London Gray or Frosty Carrina – 2 new colors by Caesarstone at $76+ per foot.

Here’s an example of Frosty Carrina from a gardenweb member. (Gardenweb is the best by the way.)


Here’s an example of London Grey in a kitchen from a gardenweb member.

Among these options, I think Cambria Torquay is my favorite at the moment. I’m even contemplating putting it in our master bathroom as well.

The other option I am still considering is black granite. I don’t think I like this option as well, but many of the kitchens I’ve saved on Houzz have white cabinets with black countertops (either soapstone or granite) so I guess my subconscious still likes it.

Here are the options I’ve seen in our price range

Black Pearl Granite – Not sure on the price per foot but this was a $10 upcharge from Tier 1 granite from the cabinet maker.
Opalescence Granite – Same price as the Black Pearl.
Black Andes Granite – This picture is honed. Polished is the same price as Opalescence and Black Pearl.
Thoughts? Suggestions? Ideas? 🙂

One month in!

Happy Fourth of July!


That’s what Jack thinks about the Fourth of July. I’d say not impressed. (He doesn’t love loud noises that sound like guns or children screaming.)

WOW! The month has flown by!

We just finished the Kairos course in Springfield (the first ever in Springfield!) which was amazing!

During that time, our house was also being framed. 🙂 Meaning our builder was balancing both all week. I’m pretty sure he works harder in “retirement” than most of us do every day!

Check it out! Our new basement family room!

IMG_0452 (Large)

This is the view of the basement framed from the back yard.

Back of House Framed

Next came the decking (or flooring for the main level) and they began framing the main floor!Side of house framing

Amish Crew

The big hole in the floor is where our stairs to the basement will be.

Front of House Framed

We had some (more) decisions to make about the front windows. The architect plan had them going to the soffit in the kitchen and front bedroom (The right 2 windows in this picture), but below the soffit on the closet (the furthest to the left). The tall window will be in our staircase with a gable above and it was in line with the kitchen and bedroom window.

In order to have the windows trimmed in white (which I’m pumped about!) the windows needed to be moved down. Well after some going back and forth on which would look better, we decided to leave all of them lower than the soffit with the exception of the staircase window…because

EntryIf you notice in this picture the front door (to the right) is 10 feet high, while the wall in front of the staircase is only 9 feet high. This whole area was supposed to have 10 foot ceilings…hmmm.

We were left with 3 options.

1) Drop the whole area down to 9 feet ceilings then step up to 10 feet at the end of this area where it meets the living room.

2) Drop only the stair area to 9 feet ceilings with a box stepping up to 10 feet surrounding it.

3) Raise the walls and roof 1 foot.

Well, a skill that I’m painfully learning is to make decisions like these in oh, say 30 minutes or less so the framers can keep working. Woah.

Anyone who knows me, knows this isn’t enough time to put it into GIMP and compare how it will look or make a list of pro’s and con’s.

So, on the spot, our builder and I evaluated the options on the job site.

1) Option 1 would mean the door and transom we ordered would have to be shortened with no trim between the door and transom, but would leave.

2) Option 2 would look like an accident we tried to cover up.

3) Option 3 would mean the roof line would be higher and the peak in the back roof would be even higher. The staircase window, which I already was afraid was too low, would look even lower.

SO, we decided to go with option 3 and our builder raised the window himself!

I also got to witness some Amish Acrobatics…

Putting up the Porch Rafters

The crew kept working and here’s how it looks now! IMG_1016

They will keep working hard today even though we’re taking the day off to relax. 🙂

We should be under roof soon!!

Starting to Look like a House!

I still can’t believe how quickly our house is coming along!

Can I just say I feel incredibly blessed to have a builder who texts me updates with pictures every day and usually walks through the house explaining what was done that day and why?

So on the note of what has been done…let me just tell you (and show you). 🙂

The forms were setup and filled with concrete in one day!


Filling the forms

I couldn’t help but wonder how he’d get all that concrete off of his shoes when he finished. 😉

The best job on this crew in my opinion is the guy with the little remote control who got to steer the crane.

The best job on this crew in my opinion is the guy with the little remote control who got to steer the crane. Fun!

Next, the basement walls were sprayed with a tar coating to waterproof them and hopefully keep our basement dry!


The plumbing was done in the basement the same day, then re bar was added to reinforce the concrete and the floor was poured.




Can you picture it yet?

It’s crazy how much has gotten done in the past 2 weeks!

Here’s the view from our new back yard.


Look at that Progress

So much has happened!!

We were out of town for a wedding over the weekend, but before we left, the lot was already dug up and ready for footings to be poured.

We stopped by before we left town and here’s what we found.

This was our view from the front yard.

This was our view from the front yard :)

Here is where our front porch would be!

Staked Out and Ready to Go

Staked Out and Ready to Go!

So, while we were gone our builder and our brother-in-law took pictures and texted us with updates.   Here’s what happened while we were away.

Forms for Footings

They got an early start on the footings, but then…it started raining.

And this happened…

The truck slid off the road in the mud!

Uh Oh!

Uh Oh!

They had to call a tow truck to come get it out.

Tow Truck


Back on track, they got the footings finished!



Footings and Gravel


More to come!


Ground Breaking News!

We have officially broken ground on our new house!! We went out on lunch today and awed at the dozer moving dirt around effortlessly. It was a beautiful day!

I think we could have watched him all afternoon.

It’s now sinking in that we are actually doing this! 

The dozer is digging and leveling out the lot

The dozer is digging and leveling out the lot. This is the view from the west side of the lot facing east. The big cut out is the front porch.

Dozer leveling out lot

This is the west side of the lot where our back patio and yard will be.

More than the sparrows

I’m very excited to write this first post of our blog! More than the sparrows is a reminder to me (which I need daily) that I need not worry about the things of this world because I have a Father in heaven who knows what I need and loves me more than I can imagine.

We are in the process of building a house and I’m sure I will need to remind myself quite often of that truth.

I’ll be posting about our house building (and decorating!) process here!