After a more personal post yesterday (and wow, thank you for all of the sweet comments via fb, text etc.) I'm switching gears today to talk about something that doesn't include a growing belly or nausea. I had documented the majority of our house projects when we first started renovating, then it dwindled off (sort of like our motivation) as the months went by. I have a lot to catch up on.

We've still been doing projects here and there (including our sunroom and redoing our half bath), and now we are taking on a pretty massive one in the upcoming months. We are either gluttons for punishment or chose to see life through rose-colored glasses.

When we originally looked at what is now our home, the basement was one of the largest draws for us. It's as large as the first floor ( ~ 1,700 sq ft), super clean and has 8' ceilings. What all that translates to is it's a perfect basement to be finished. We've had it in the back of our minds that we'd want to finish it eventually, especially since it would increase the value of the home. It will also be used a lot now that a wee one is on the way (It's one thing that many people have suggested doing for additional space and a place to store toys, etc).

To keep this as simple as possible, here's a bird's eye view of the basement structure and layout:

Over the past year and a half, we've been using it as mostly storage. We made a little "living room" area, where we have work out equipment and furniture. However, I'm the only one who really uses that. Most of Kyle's "toys" are also stored down there (fishing poles, camping equipment, an ice shanty, all things hunting, etc). Not to mention a lot of our tools (you tend to gather a hefty amount of those when renovating).

This little drawing makes it look much more clean-cut than it is.

We had big dreams-originally. An in-law suite in addition to a large living area, and then the rest would be left unfinished for storage. Although an in-law suite, would be, well- sweet- the reality is it came with a hefty price tag that we couldn't seem to justify. Call me selfish, but I also didn't want our nicest full bathroom in the basement, where it would only be used once in a while.
That may change in the coming years if we need an additional bedroom, but right now, there's no need.

Original Plan:

After much measuring, taping, re-taping, and many trips up and down the stairs to "look again," we decided on this plan. We are leaving the "in-law suite" empty, just accessible via a door, so that if later on we want to finish it, or the next owner does, it makes it easy for us/them to do so.

And this past Sunday, we started it!

This is going to be a HUGE project. The biggest that we've done so far. The wall above is about 1/4th of the walls that need to be framed. Thankfully, since it's the basement, there isn't a huge need to rush to get it done. We can take some time, which relieves a bit of pressure and makes it more enjoyable than agonizing (but ask me again in a few months if I still feel that way!)

Here's the to-do list:


- Frame out all of the walls. We'll do this ourselves (with the help of some friends/family). You'll see in the background of this picture that the previous owners "framed" out the wall via cheap "wood" paneling that has insulation behind it. You may also notice the pipe in the upper left hand corner, which is the reason we need to frame out entire new walls along the existing ones. In a lot of basements, you'll see that the pipes are framed in, but ours are not level (they were installed on an angle which makes it impossible to frame them in a way that would look nice.) Solution: Build new wall a few inches away from the pipe.

- Installing Drywall: pretty self explanatory & we plan to do this ourselves as well.

- Taping & Mudding Drywall: Definitely be hired out!

- Paint: Hired out! (aka family ; )


Before painting the drywall and putting in any carpet, we need to finish the ceiling. We haven't yet decided what to do with it yet! We figure we have a month or two to decide.
We've narrowed it town to three options (as if there are a lot more ?!!): Drywall, Bead board, Paint.

(We'll come back to this in another post!)


We are doing good ole' carpet with good padding. Plain and Simple)

As of now, we're just doing what we can with what time we have...and building some legit forearm muscles along the way. Each of those 2x4's has been nailed by hand!

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