What we’ve been up to..Part 1

Our deepest apologies on the radio silence from the ranch, but rest assured we have a lot to show for our “quiet” time.

For the past 2 months we have had our basement under serious repair. This was the first time we have ever had a major renovation on the inside of our house. We have had a few projects outside, which in retrospect is CONSIDERABLY easier.

About 5 years ago, the entire state of WI decided to flood. We had dams burst and Interstates flood over. It was a MESS! That also began a little water problem in the basement at the ranch. Every time it rained, we had water come in. It was never standing water (thank goodness) but it trickled in from all the walls and was just enough for us to never be able to keep a carpet (or anything of value) on the floor. We technically had 2 rooms ‘finished’ but they went into horrible disrepair as the water problem continued. We finally decided that enough was enough and we brought in the big guns. We had to have drain tile and a sump pump installed inside and boy oh boy, they do not prepare you for the mess that is about to ensue.

Lovely graffiti discovered
Lovely graffiti discovered

First up was to rip down all of the paneling that was up in the finished rooms. This exposed some lovely unknown graffiti. It also confirmed what we had always thought..there was absolutely no insulation between the paneling and the concrete…hence why it was so freaking cold during the winter!

Power tools...ar ar ar (Me doing Tim the Tool man impersonation)
Power tools…ar ar ar (Me doing Tim the Tool man impersonation)

Next up was having the entire perimeter of the basement jack hammered This is where the mess of all messes began. They used a wet saw to first cut all of the concrete. Guess what water+concrete dust turns into…??? White concrete-y foot prints all throughout your house! Especially little kitty shaped ones….up and down your burgundy sofa….!!! Yes that was fun.

Rubble rubble toil and trouble
Rubble rubble toil and trouble

I will say our contractor and employees did their best to clean up after themselves every day and the hubby and I just finally accepted we would be living in a mud hut for awhile and went about our business as best we could.

And we went from a basement looking like this: (previously my sewing room)


to…………………………………….TADA! Yup…this is the same room! Weeeeee! It actually looks like a room! With carpet! That’s dry! And insulation! And REAL ceilings!


We also re-located our bedroom to the basement so the boy and girl could finally have their own rooms. How sweet is this?


Here is what we learned throughout this process:

Drywall is a 4 letter word. It is hideous to work with and even worse to sand. I am determined to make a fine covering of white dust in your house the new ‘clean’!

Queen sized box springs were not made to go down our stairs. We tried 6 ways til Tuesday to make the damn thing go. Luckily now they now make them in 2 pieces…..sigh……another hidden expense…….

RENT is the best soundtrack for keeping one motivated through sanding…and sanding….and sanding…and painting….and painting…and painting….(Viva La Vie Boheme!)

This is dry wall face…in case you haven’t experienced for yourself:

Yes, I wore goggles! I tried to wear a mask too...but then the goggles would fog up and I couldn't see...it was either one or the other but not both!
Yes, I wore goggles! I tried to wear a mask too…but then the goggles would fog up and I couldn’t see…it was either one or the other but not both!

We finally have touched every square corner of the ranch. There is not one place that the Wolowik’s haven’t put in sweat equity. Rest assured, when we sell it will be on the market for $1M!


4 thoughts on “What we’ve been up to..Part 1

  1. Looks great Heather! AND, the kids have their own rooms now! WOW!! More space for them to get messy!

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