Home Renovation: Out with the Old

We’re doing lots of work to our house this summer. We’re getting new windows, siding, and doors. We’re rebuilding the back porch and adding a front porch that will carry the roof line from the garage all the way across the front of the house. Work began today, Tuesday, May 28. How did we get ready? The obvious answer is that we picked out new siding, windows and doors and then got approval from our local village board, but only after securing the financing. We day dreamed about how amazing it will be to have a big front porch and an energy efficient home. But then we thought it was appropriate to get bold and crazy and do something none of us would likely have an opportunity to do again: we invited some friends over for a graffiti party and went to town with 20+ cans of spray paint.

It was our way of saying, “Out with the old!” And by old I mean the original 35+ year old dirty, faded aluminum siding and a very dilapidated back porch that came with the house when we bought it 10+ years ago. We’re pretty sure the construction of said porch involved several cases of beer shared among friends in exchange for labor. Aside from a giant hole that was once the home of a critter (according to rumors, it was a skunk) there is evidence to confirm suspicions that the footers for the posts that held the porch were nothing more than small pieces of concrete sitting in the dirt. We’re incredibly thankful that the poorly constructed porch never harmed someone. It still makes me laugh that even in the 10 years we’ve lived here, we only ever had a stack of cinder blocks to use as steps going from the porch to the backyard.

Work is finished for the day. Our porch is gone and the bottom part of the siding in the back has been removed. Tomorrow we anticipate more of the siding to be gone and a big delivery of windows and other supplies to arrive. And we get one more night to admire the artistic skills of a handful of friends and giggle at the neighbors and strangers who continue to stop by and look in awe, wonder, and confusion. We’re half wondering how long it will take to get a nasty-gram from our village board for breaking covenants demanding we fix it within a 30 day window. I’m certain they will approve of the end result and will find humor in knowing people (likely strangers) cared more about reporting us than bothering to ask us what happened. The number of people who stopped to look while we were outside and in the yard but didn’t talk to us was entertaining.

Anyway, here are the after shots of out handy work. Enjoy!








  1. Alice Devlin :

    Hi Susan,
    Tammy’s Mom here.
    Saw the pics on FB and I got a real kick, out of your artistic display.
    I bet your neighbors, were seeing stars and I don’t mean the ones, in the sky.
    It was a cute and fun idea.
    Just pray all the contractors show up!!!
    Good luck on all the work. I am sure it will be great,, when it is finished.

  2. Hi Tammy’s Mom :) Thanks for stopping by and checking out our story. The contractors did show up on Tuesday as scheduled and have been very busy transforming our home. Watch for more posts and updates!

  3. ellen callahan :

    Hi! Love the pictures posted on COLUMBIA PATCH!!! Very unique! The WLRAC is a bit more stringent, as are our neighbors. We live on the 13th hole of Fairway Hills Golf Course.
    I hope the company you hired for your renovations does excellent work for you! Best of luck to you both!

  4. Thanks! In all honesty, the only approval we sought was for the renovations themselves. We will not be surprised if/when we are contacted by either CA or our RAC. But, I am certain that we can have it all cleared away within 30 days. That’s how long we got once in the middle of winter to clean our drab siding. Watch for more posts. We have more fun surprises to come!


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