Completing The Interior Of Our Home 

Update 10 November 2009 - Wow! What a job this turned out to be for one person. Please forgive the long delay in updating the site but I have been spending long hours working on the interior finish. My husband's health has made it necessary for us to move in before the house is fully completed. 

The lower floor is complete and livable with the following exceptions:

No interior doors.
90% of trim

We do NOT have our stair railings installed but since the upstairs is unfinished, no one is going to be using them in the near future. 

Most of the delay is a direct result of our lousy economy. The cost for doors, stair railings, hardwood floor upstairs, and trim for the doors, corners, and base was to be covered by our 401K savings. Our financial advisors were reluctant to cash us out until we had lost about 40%. At this time, I do not feel comfortable spending our small balance on completion of the house. I am hoping that we will recover some of our money when we sell our travel trailer and my husband's 4WD truck. These are items we no longer need and the equity in them will go a long way toward our goal. 

On a positive note, we are thoroughly enjoying our new home. Even though it is small, the space is open and filled with morning sunlight. I still have a lot of moving-in before we are fully functional but I'm taking it one day at a time.

Below are pictures of the house at various stages of completion. There is also a video on youtube.


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Living Room Floor

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Kitchen Light

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Kitchen Backsplash Storyline Tile

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Kitchen Backsplash

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Hand Painted Ceiling Fan

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Fireplace Mantel

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Bathroom Light Fixture

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Dining Area

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Custom Tile Design


Update 31 October 2008 - Sorry for the long delay in updating the site. I have been really busy on the house the last month and a half. 

I completed the finish on the bathroom vanity and utility cabinet before the countertops were installed. They really look nice.

Our log beams were installed by Jeff Miller on the 20th of September. 

The red aromatic cedar needed to be straight edged, planned to exact thickness and then cut to size for the window trim. I completed all of the windows on the lower level except the one in the kitchen. It will be completed after the electrician has completed the wiring for a light over the kitchen sink. (An oversight during our design phase.) 

The next project required scaffolding again so I rented another set. With the scaffolding in place I was able to complete both sides of the fireplace with ponderosa pine and the face of the fireplace was covered with white pine. With my son's help, we manufactured a trim piece for the center. I also completed the trim for the upper windows. 

As soon as the upper windows were trimmed out, I began the sanding, staining, and application of clear coat to the ceiling, log beams and fireplace. This did take a lot of time and I was certainly pleased to be finished with the project and the scaffolding. 

Our solid surface countertop for the kitchen cabinets was installed yesterday and I am in the process of completing the stain and clear coating process.

Well, that pretty much brings us up-to-date. There are a few photos below and here is our latest video on

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Dining Area East Wall
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Living Room East Wall
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Living Room Ceiling
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Kitchen Ceiling


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Update 13 September 2008 - Still waiting for the log beam installation on the vaulted ceiling but I have completed the walls in the loft area. Just talked to the contractor and he is hoping to be on site by the end of next week (18-19 Sept). 

The two storage closets in the loft are on hold for a short time while I finish the custom cabinets before the countertop installers arrive. 

I made another trip to Wilcox Timber in Rusk, TX to pick up the aromatic red cedar needed to trim out the windows and to face the floor joists of the loft. I also selected a mantel for the fireplace and will be installing it after the log beams are in place.  The planks for the window trim will need to be run through a planer and edged before cutting to size.

The porcelain tile for the main floor has been ordered and we are awaiting delivery. I will be adding a small half wall between the shower and toilet so the tile contractor can build a slight wheelchair ramp into the shower. 

I started this wall on Thursday, the 11th but experienced my first injury when the faming nailer fired twice and the second nail ended up in my left hand. Needless to say, a trip to the emergency room was required to remove the nail but thankfully, there was no permanent damage to my thumb or wrist and it is only slightly achy today. A good example of what can happen when using older equipment.  The nailer is 20+ years old and has been repaired many times. Repair now is almost impossible due to obsolete parts that are no longer manufactured. So the rest of the framing work will be completed with a hammer and nails. For anyone that thinks the accident happened due to negligence just let me say that I knew the nailer was double firing and was being extremely careful but because it is so heavy, my control was diminished.  And yes, I know, I should not have been trying to use it. Lesson learned!

Our electrician finalized installation of the breaker box and meter box for FEC to bring power to the house. The electric meter was installed yesterday so now the electrician can return and turn on power to outlets inside the house which will be a great improvement over extension cords. 

As soon as hurricane Ike is gone, I will get back to work but for today, I get to sit back.  Below are pictures of the cedar I picked up as well as our mantel.  Also there are a couple of pictures of the storage walls in the loft area.

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Aromatic Red Cedar for Trim

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Aromatic Red Cedar Mantel

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Loft Storage Wall

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Loft Storage Areas

Update 14 August 2008 - We are coming along nicely now. Still waiting for the log beam installation on the vaulted ceiling but I have almost completed the walls in the loft area. My son-in-law and son have been a tremendous help in getting the aspen installed in the loft ceiling as well as getting the 1x8 ponderosa pine on the side walls of the loft. I still have the storage area to construct at the far end of the loft along with a cedar lined bench seat under the window.

Our custom cabinets are being installed today. Raintree Custom Cabinets (Emory, TX) did a beautiful job on a unique door design, perfect for a log home.

Our electrical contractor will be here next week to turn on the power. When he and the electric company have completed their tasks, I will request the CH/A system be installed.  It will improve the working conditions tremendously. July and August in Texas are just too hot and humid to get much accomplished without air. After the loft walls are completed, I will go back to working on the cedar lining for the closet. The next project will be to manufacture and install all the trim.

Here are a few pictures of the loft area as well as the cabinets that were installed today.

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Stair ceiling and walls in loft
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Utility Room Pantry and laundry sink
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Open Pantry view
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Bathroom linen and clothes hamper
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Kitchen cabinets view 1
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Kitchen cabinets view 2
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Kitchen cabinets view 3
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Bathroom Vanity

Update 25 July 2008 - Wow - its been a whole month since I posted an update.  It's been pretty hectic around our place lately.  I drove to Rusk, TX and picked up aromatic red cedar for the closets. I have edged all of the boards, planed them and now have to run them through the table saw with a dado so they can lap when installed. I stopped on the cedar when my crew (son-in-law, brother, grandson, and son) were able to arrange time to help with the vaulted ceiling.  I rented 13 feet of scaffolding for 2 weeks and we succeeded in getting all of the R30 insulation and 1x6 aspen planking installed in one week. The second week, my brother and I erected the fireplace framework. I will rent the scaffolding again when I am ready to install the planking on the fireplace and apply the finish. 

I have also selected Raintree Custom Cabinets out of Emory, TX to build and install our kitchen, utility, and bathroom cabinets. I am now looking at all of my options for countertops. Our budget will determine which material is selected. Click here to view our latest video. 

Here are a few photos of our latest progress.

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Update 23 June 2008 - Sorry for the delay in updates - had to take a couple of days to build a fence to move my horses to a fresh pasture. But, I have completed the bedroom and the wall behind the stairs which includes a small alcove for the telephone. The process of selecting a cabinet maker has already begun and I am waiting on bids from several. I have also ordered the aromatic cedar for the closets and will drive to Rusk, TX one day this week to pick it up. I will also be picking up additional insulation so we can begin the vaulted ceiling in the living room. Once the ceiling is completed, the wall above the fireplace can be covered and the fireplace enclosure can be completed. I do not intend to attempt the vaulted ceiling without assistance from my family. We will also be renting the necessary scaffolding to ensure safety. Below are pictures of my current progress.

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Update 11 June 2008 - Progress is moving along now that the work can be accomplished by one person.  During the last four days, I have completed the area for the refrigerator in the kitchen but decided to wait until I talk to the cabinet maker before completing the wall for the cabinets. Instead I installed the planks for the long wall in the bedroom. This was a time consuming effort since I created a herringbone pattern to give a little character to the area. I plan to complete the remaining bedroom wall this week. The interior of the closets will be covered with 1/2 x 6 T&G aromatic cedar. The material will not be picked up until the end of June so, while we are waiting, I will complete the wall under the staircase. My husband was able to locate scaffolding for installing the insulation and ceiling in the vaulted area. We will also be completing the framework for the fireplace and installing the planking on the gable portion of the end wall while the scaffolding is available. Ponderosa Pine is being used throughout the kitchen, living area and bedroom.

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Ponderosa Blue Pine herringbone pattern

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Update 5 June 2008 - Once again, our work has been delayed due to family priorities. My daughter-in-law has been fighting a mysterious illness for several years and after the work the first of May, she underwent major bypass surgery. My son's job also became too demanding for him to have any spare time to assist.  However, my son-in-law spent the last few days helping install the ceiling in the kitchen area and under the stair landing. We also installed the insulation in the loft (at least until we ran out of material). Below are a few pictures of our progress.

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Update 5 May 2008 - Well, plans change quite frequently around here. Due to other commitments, the interior completion has been greatly delayed.  My husband was up to walking around in the house for a few minutes and told me that I needed to install the ceilings before the wall coverings.  This was due to the width of the nailing strip for the ceiling. So, instead of attempting the installation on my own, I opted to wait until my son could take a couple of days vacation as it really is a 2-3 man job. 

My son-in-law and I installed most of the R-19 and R-30 insulation needed in order to complete the ceilings. We were short on the material. 

On (May 1st) Thursday morning we began installing the bathroom ceiling. All of the ceilings in the house will be covered with 1x6 T&G Aspen. My son-in-law and grandson came over to help which really made things move right along.  We completed the ceiling in the bathroom and utility room while my grandson made a big dent in cleaning up the debris pile. 

On Friday, my son and I were the only ones working but we were able to complete the walls in the bathroom. 

Saturday, my brother and sister-in-law drove out from Dallas to help. They completed installing the insulation in the bedroom ceiling joists while my son and I completed the walls in the utility room.  We knew we were running short on our 1x8 T&G White Pine so I picked up some plywood to cover the area behind my floor to ceiling pantry and cabinets. 

On Sunday, my brother came back to help. The three of us were able to complete the ceiling in the bedroom. 

Here are some pictures of the interior walls.

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Update 16 March 2008 -  My son and grandson were able to help for a few hours today and we succeeded in finishing the insulation on the high gable wall behind our fireplace.  I also have decided not to continue on with the fireplace until I talk to the contractor that is going to install my log beams as the fireplace structure may create a problem for his installation. So, I will begin on the walls in our bedroom this week.  I will be installing 1x6 tongue and groove ponderosa pine planking and expect it to be a relatively easy process.  

Below are a few pictures of the house at this time.

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Update 13 March 2008 - This is our first update on finishing the interior.  Our electrician was here the same day as the roofing company and completed the first phase of wiring.  We do not have electricity to the house yet so we are still working with extension cords.  

Satterwhite Log Homes delivered our finish materials on 6 March so we are all set to get started.  Our first effort was installation of all insulation in the downstairs walls. This has not been a quick job because of other family priorities but most of it has been completed.  I was able to get the insulation in the gable wall above the fireplace today.  The wall is quite high and for safety reasons, I must have someone with me to steady the ladder. I had almost finished when my stapler jammed.  It was NOT a quick and easy fix. My husband gave out and had to quit so I will try to finish tomorrow. I also plan to start on the remainder of the fireplace framework tomorrow. 

A trip to the store is required to pick up "tile backer board" for the wall directly behind the chimney (purely as extra fire protection).

I will try to upload new photos tomorrow.

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Last updated: Monday, 11 May 2009
Site Owner: Ellen Mayo
URL: Building Your Dream Home
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