Wednesday, July 6, 2016

My house didn't always look like this.  In fact, it has been years of blood, sweat, tears and of course MONEY to get to where we are today.  Still, when I first set eyes on my house back in 2009, I swear I saw the house you see today.  Fortunately, my naive self saw the potential and not the work!  

We have been through many major projects.  Roof, windows, stucco, kitchen, it's been a long journey.  Recently, we took on one of the biggest projects to date:  MASONRY!  From the moment we moved in, our masonry was in great disrepair.  We would regularly apologize to our mailman for the obstacle course he had to endure for so many years.  Finally, this year we could fiscally go forward with repaving our driveway, installing two new stoops and pave three walkways.  YIKES!  We had no idea all the decisions that needed to be made along the way. 

The first step was DEMO!  Due to the length of our driveway and having all of our walkways and stoops done at once, we felt as if half of our property was destroyed.  With the removal of our old concrete, brick and pavers came damage to our lawn and in-ground sprinklers.  This was not something we had forecasted.  Once the demo was complete we were left with dirt everywhere, especially in our house!  Hello vacuum!     

We had to have our columns temporarily removed in the front of our house so that they could work on rebuilding our front stoop.  What a scary sight!

Then, the driveway pavers were laid since the dirt in our driveway needed time to settle (three weeks to be exact).  We chose a jumbo belgium block at the recommendation of the company.  

Next, our apron was completed using the same jumbo pavers.  We had to make a decision as to how many feet we wanted our apron to be.  I honestly had no idea what to say!

Then, it was time to draw out guidelines for the stoops and walkways.  Our head mason was very patient and great to work with!  These are very permanent decisions, so you need to work with a company that is willing to listen and explain the process.

Then, the head mason and I were off to the masonry yard where I needed to choose my brick and bluestone for the stoops and walkways.  Who knew there were so many brick choices!  Again, I was not prepared for this task.  It's a good thing I had my camera phone in hand and Pinterest at home.  You may be surprised with my decision of using the 51 DDX listed below.  In trying to keep with the style that was previously there, the 51 DDX actually was the closest choice.  They don't look all that appealing here, however in pictures, the finished project was beautiful!  I also stalked many houses in the neighborhood!  

We had so much rain to contend with during the process of having the brick and bluestone installed...MARCH!  I couldn't believe the artistry that goes into this job!  I was amazed by the entire process which leads me to stress researching to find a quality mason!  

Then finally, three weeks later, our blacktop was laid!  What a life changing event!  See below to see our shocking transformation!





Once again, I am glad that we are all finished with our masonry work and although it was quite stressful at times, the end result makes it all well worth it!  By the way, a month after we finished, my mailman retired!

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