Creating a Family Room that a Family Would Actually Want to Spend Time in

Part 1: Demolishing the Family Room

Unfortunately this room did not get a color-coded name.

So one Thursday afternoon, Zac went crazy

After finishing getting the nails out of the studs from the old drywall and wood paneling layers 1 and 2, we began insulating and sheetrocking


I almost look professional…except for that goofy smile.


Zac actually looks professional, but not as happy as me.


Challenges so far (and it’s only been 4 days…)

1.  Our hobbit-sized house needs a hobbit-sized door, so we had to special order one

For now, we’ve got a very thick piece of plywood


2.  We have to get new windows because one has a nice crack

3.  And since the windows were poorly installed to begin with…ROT

Besides that, it was a good weekend

In other news, Suki continues to long for lil’ Coward

…and for future days on the beach (but so do Zac and I)

Part 2: Remodeling the Family Room like it’s our Day Job

Thanks to our snow days, working on the room really was our day job.

First Zac pretended to be an electrician

With great success! It took him 3 tries to get things right, but we got the permit.

We had the new windows installed

And decided that we were capable of installing the front door.  False.  We got it level after re-installing it after botching try #1, but we’re still not feeling proud.


Since I got 2 snow days and Zac had finished finals, we spent 2 days insulating, finishing the electrical, installing a frame in the doorway between the room and the kitchen, and sheetrocking.

I was crowned “Sheetrock Princess”


Zac began mudding today, we’re expecting to prime the room next week

Suki has been very pleased with the remodeling process.  She especially likes her new windows.  She uses them to look for putty-tats. Delicious putty-tats.

And just one more thing! We must thank Zac’ title sponsors, without them the room may still be a skeleton


Part 3: The Turn of the 1970s Family Room

Before and After


And During:

After the final coat of primer on the walls and ceiling

And painted! We chose “Navajo White,” it’s a very very light yellowish beige.

On to trim

Before and After Windows


Decorated with our new cheap furniture from Ross and St. Vinnie’s



With our new family room done, it’s almost possible to forget about all the problems in the house…and the Passat

And we revealed today to Suki, on her 2nd birthday, that she is the offspring of a jackal.

Which came as no surprise.

She sure can hide it well sometimes

Family Room Costs and Sweat Equity

Estimated Costs (original chart lost when the Mac died – if only more we invested in an external hard drive like EVERYONE ELSE)

Front Door materials $32.00
Front Door $265.00
Windows $848.00
Drywall – walls $128.00
Sanding materials $11.00
Nails and screws $14.50
Insulation $46.00
Mud/ Compound materials $65.00
Ceiling texture $35.00
Primer $60.00
Paint supplies $55.00
Paint $70.00
Trim (windows/ closets/ door) $76.00
Electrical (outlets, wires, switches) $183.00
Electrical Permit $67.00
Curtains $38.00
Lighting Fixture $24.00
Trips to the dump $69.00
Total $2,032.50

Family Room Sweat Equity:

Timeline: January 2012 – May 2012

Approximate data – previous data lost in the infamous Mac

1-12: Removing 2 layers of wood paneling/ nails, old drywall and filling van for dump and prepping room for drywall 13hrs
2-12: Windows installed by Discount Windows 0 hrs
2-12:Insulation and Drywall 9 hrs
2-12: Installing the front door 4 hrs
3-12: Electrical (Done once in 2-12 before drywall and redone properly in 3-12) 9 hrs
3-12: Mudding and sanding 15hrs
3-12: Priming, texturing ceiling, painting 10hrs
4-12: Trim 9 hrs
Misc: 4 trips to the dump 1 hr
Misc: 30 trips to Jerry’s/ Home Depot/ Lowes 15hrs
Total 85 hrs

About Zac and Kayleigh

Minor adventures in remodeling a 1970s-Bachelor's-Pad-Meets- Grandmother's-House. Bittersweet adventures with the destructively adorable Suki.
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