It’s Looking Like a House!

I know, I’ve been slacking again on posting. However, a lot has happened since I last posted when I showed you the beginnings of the framing of the house {read here}.

baxter river district custom house framing

Very shortly after this picture from my last post, the framing was complete. It was crazy how fast it went and it was so fun to drive by every day and see the changes and progress.

Within a few days after the completion of framing, we had a roof!

baxter river district custom house framing

And a couple days later, we had windows!

baxter river district custom house build

Here is the back view of the house.

baxter river district custom house build baxter river district custom house build

It’s starting to look like a house, huh?
Well, all that exciting stuff is over (for now). For the past week and a half it’s been plumbing and HVAC. Not that it isn’t great progress, it’s just not as much fun to watch! But we have our plumbing and HVAC systems in (I’ll spare you the details and pics of that!) and electrical starts tomorrow. Once all that is done, the drywall will start going in and it will really start looking like a house inside!

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A Last Minute Decision

 So last week I shared with you the progress of the land preparations that were done for the new house. {If you missed it, you can read about it here.}

prepping land for building custom house

Although it was exciting to see things changing, even if it was just dirt being pushed around, we were ready for more! So we were very excited the day the surveyor came out to plot the house. That is, until we saw where the house was plotted!

plotting house baxter river district

You can’t tell very well from the photo, but the house took up pretty much the entire width of the lot. And, because it was so wide, the only way it would fit was to move it really far back (our lot is skinnier in front, wider towards back) leaving us no back yard.

plotting house baxter river distrcit

It also left us very little side yard on either side.

staking2

I was completely devastated. We all knew the house was wide, but no one had anticipated we would have to plot it so far back on the lot. We also didn’t expect it to take up the entire span of the lot.

There was only one logical thing to do to solve this problem and it was not something I was very happy about. In order to get our back yard, we would have to switch our side load garage to a front load. So right there, on the spot, I had to make a decision. I wasn’t happy about it, but it didn’t seem we had much of a choice, so we said go for it. So our plans have changed from this…

custom house abberley lane modification

to this…

custom house abberley lane modification

I REALLY didn’t like this idea at first. I didn’t want the garage to be the first thing people saw when they looked at our house. I didn’t want it to be a distraction from our huge, beautiful front porch. However, I realized that our garage does not sit in line with the front of the house, it’s a good bit back, so attention will not be drawn to it too much. It’s  grown on me and I”m ok with it now. It’s moved our house up a lot and given us much more of a back yard. It’s all good.

So then we were ready for the footings to be dug and poured. Ready and waiting. We waited because of sleet and ice (Remember, we are in SC and that doesn’t happen EVER!) and we waited longer because mother nature decided that after a summer and fall of drought, it was finally time for it to rain.
But we finally had a couple days of beautiful sunny weather and have our footings!

digging footings river district baxterfooting digfootings dig

It was cool to finally see the footings because it really gave us an idea of exactly where the house would sit on the land and also we could get a better idea of the size.

footings poured river district baxter footings poured river district baxter footings poured river district baxter

We were so thankful that this part was complete because we knew that now they could really get started on the building! Not only was it exciting to finally see the footings complete, but I found this on the lot too.

oversized brick foundation

The bricks for our foundation!oversized bricks

Until next time…

playing on the lot river district baxter

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Progress

Yes, I realize it’s been a month since I posted “I’m back!” after a long, much-needed break. Sorry about that!

After finally breaking ground on our dream house at the beginning of January {read about it here}, we were so excited to watch the trees being cleared, the dirt being moved and anything else that reminded us that we were finally doing this!
land lot river district baxter

land lot river district baxterclearing trees from lot

clearing lot baxter river district

By the way, this will be our view from our front porch…gorgeous!
view from lot baxter river district

So things were moving along but then we ran into a couple delays that have slowed the progress of the house.

We hit rock…
Not just rock, boulders. Lots of them. These were all removed from our lot and this is about one third of them.

rocks boulders on lot

After removing those rocks there were a couple in the ground they had to break.

cutting rock

These guys were being difficult! So difficult a special machine had to be brought in!

cutting rock

But Mr. Mike (Our builder. Yep, that’s him running that machine up there) got through them and the grading of the land could finally move forward.

grading land baxter river district build house

Next we had the big hill. I am not sure where all the dirt came from, but the boys loved it!

climbing dirt pile

They climbed it…

dirt hill

slid down it…

sliding down dirt hill

and thought they were on top of the world!
fun on the dirt hill

It was fun while it lasted, but then the hill was bulldozed away.

grading the land baxter river district build house

The boys weren’t too happy about that!

dirt digging machines

So the land was prepped and we were ready to for the surveyor to stake the perimeter of the house. That was until the surveyor came and staked the house. I’ll tell you all about that next time!

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I’m Back with Great News!

I realize I’ve been gone for quite a while. Much longer than I anticipated! But a lot has been happening over the past couple months and things have been pretty busy around here.

First, we sold our sold our house in just four days and then we had only thirty days to pack up and move out. Needless to say, we spend those thirty days packing morning, noon and night! It was a whirlwind, but we were very thankful to have sold and closed so quickly because that meant we could get started on our new house!

land baxter river district

If you are a follower, you probably remember that back in May we were beyond excited to have purchased land to build a new home. Our dream home.

We thought we already had the perfect plan. It was one of Southern Living’s most popular “Idea House” plans, the Abberley Lane. I had torn that house out of Southern Living Magazine years before. I loved it! But I never in a million years thought I’d have the opportunity to build it!

southern living abberley lane floorplan

I absolutely love the look of this house. It reminds me of a lowcountry plantation home. Hubby and I met in Charleston, and we used to love to walk around downtown and look at the gorgeous homes and architecture of the historic city. This one caught my eye immediately when I saw it because it reminds me of one of those homes.

Although it was the perfect plan, there were a “few” things we wanted to change. I know I have shown you these before, but it’s been a while so I thought I’d briefly refresh.

We wanted to extend the porch so that it wrapped around both sides of the house. This meant moving the garage to the back.

abberley lane floor plan modification

We wanted the kitchen and family room to be more open to each other.

abberley lane floor plan modification

We wanted to eliminate the two story family room to allow for more square footage upstairs.

abberley lane floor plan modification

We also didn’t need the formal living space in the front of the house so we borrowed the front entry and stairway from another Southern Living plan, Wentworth Heights (shown below). It allowed that extra room to be hidden behind the stairs. Perfect for my messy craft room!

abberley lane floor plan modification

 A “few” modifications became many changes and many drafts, but we finally had the perfect plan. Thank God for our architect who was so patient and accommodating! (KC Home Designs).

She is currently working on the most recent (and final set), but this is pretty close. We only made a few changes after picking out appliances and choosing bathroom cabinets.

Custom home abberley lane modification

Custom home abberley lane modification

After the plans were complete, it was time to choose a builder. We decided on Olde South Homes, a very impressive husband and wife team. We are thrilled that they will be building our dream home and have been very impressed with everything so far!

After weeks of waiting to close at the bank and a couple more weeks of waiting on permits, etc, we have finally broken ground!

breaking ground river districtbreaking ground river district

breaking ground river district

I’m sure these pictures aren’t too exciting for y’all, but for us it was HUGE! So we are finally, after months of patiently (and not so patiently) waiting, building our house! Stay tuned, I plan on posting about the house often!

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