This past week, we prepared for installation of French doors in the dining room. Ultimately, these French doors will lead to a screen porch and deck in the backyard.
First step: Order the doors! This took us a lot longer to do than planned, and of course they won’t be delivered for another 3-4 weeks. Our first problem was that we knew exactly what we wanted (see previous post) but had a hard time finding a company that provided everything. We had it narrowed to Marvin and Anderson. Ultimately, we chose Marvin doors, primarily because Tony liked their locking mechanism, they had a much wider selection of exterior color finishes, and they were less expensive.
Our second problem was that once we found a door we liked, we had a hard time pulling the trigger. Buying the doors forced us to make decisions we didn’t expect to have to make until much later (for example, eventually we hope to change the exterior colors of the house, so in choosing an exterior door color, we had to think about those color choices now). Also, Tony and I are the type of people who like to really think things through before making big purchases. We measured, we talked to the contractor, we measured again, we visited 5 different stores, we measured again, we talked to the door guy, we measured again. Last week, we finally ordered the doors.
The result is, we are about a month behind where we thought we would be in terms of interior projects, and the next project – the kitchen – can’t really start until the new doors are installed. But we have learned 2 important lessons that we will carry with us as we progress with the rest of the house: (1) We can’t handle projects one at a time; we need to start planning the next project while working on previous one. (2) Everything always takes longer than you think it will!
Next step: Continue to prepare the dining room for door installation. This weekend, that involved removing the crown molding from the dining room and removing the plaster from the exterior wall to expose the entire wall where the door is being installed. We exposed the entire wall because we plan to add insulation during the door insulation, and we may even widen the wall cavity to allow for more insulation (we’re not sure yet – we’re still measuring!).
Final step (for the weekend): We drilled a hole beneath the window in order to measure (yes, again) the exterior layers of the wall. We needed to get an accurate measurement of the wall width, but between the board you see in the photos (called sheathing) and the exterior siding, there was a layer of original siding. We didn’t have a way to measure the width of the sheathing and the original siding, so we drilled a hole through to the exterior aluminum siding in order to do so.
If we decide to widen the wall, we will do that over the next couple weeks. so that it’s finished when the door arrives.