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Project Update: The light at the end of the tunnel


(A little note from me: My dream for my newborn blog here is to one day join the ranks of all the beautiful blogs out there with gorgeous photography of swoon-worthy interiors, because that’s what I love to look at, naturally. I wasn’t sure if I wanted to show posts like these on here, because, well, it’s just a series of not-so-pretty-to-look-at-lumber pictures. But, I realized that this is all a part of my home’s story. Some posts will have pretty images, and some won’t. I’m okay with that! So, if you’re looking for pretty pictures, this post will disappoint. But if you like the behind-the-scenes perspective, if you will, read on!)

Well folks, we’re about a month and a half into our renovation project, and I’m seeing light at the end of the tunnel. No, really, there is actually a tunnel of light that I can see. It’s in the new bathroom.

We installed a skylight—aka cut a hole in our roof. And by “we,” I of course mean my husband. I went into another room for this job. I enjoy watching most of our demolition projects, but the thought of seeing our roof——you know, that thing that keeps us dry and protected——willingly destroyed, kept me at a safe distance so I wouldn’t have to cringe as shingles fell into the house as said hole was cut.

It’s going to be worth it though. We’re Jaga installed a Velux Sun Tunnel, or solar tube, available at Lowe’s, and it’s basically a tunnel of highly reflective metal that extends up through the roof, about 9″ in diameter, capped with a glass dome. It looks like this:tgr

It’s not exactly my dream skylight as you saw last week, but it still makes a dramatic difference in dark spaces. I also chose it for budget (under $200), and for ease of installation.

Well, I say easy.

Jaga had to go through not just one roof, but two. There was the original roof from when the house was first built, and then the newer roof from when the sunroom was added. Here’s Jaga cutting through layer one. Our friend took this picture (I’m hanging out elsewhere, remember, with the baby).


Then he got up on the roof to cut the hole with a Sawzall reciprocating saw. He marked the circle by tracing around a pot lid with a chalk pencil. Yup, no joke. There he is, cutting a hole in our roof.


Ummm, yeah, this is one of those things you want to make sure you do right the first time.


And he did. The stressful moment is now over.

This next view is looking through the top hole down into the house (that’s a ladder down there on the floor), and the old original roof underneath. Old homes and their quirks, man. At least it’s not like having one of those staircases that lead to nowhere.


Though it’s hard to see the impact the light has in the bathroom without the drywall, here’s a shot of the space with the light coming in through the newly-made hole. It really brightens it up.


And here is what it looks like on the roof when the hole is sealed, flashed, and covered with the glass dome.


Until the drywall is put back on the ceiling, the rest of the tunnel can’t be connected and installed, so you won’t see the finished skylight on the inside until more progress is made. So, yes, the skylight saga will continue later with a part 2.

Alright, so speaking of progress, and I’ll make this quick as this post is already long. Since the last update post, we also have had all the plumbing and the electrical roughed-in. We had professionals come in for those two areas of work because we didn’t want to tackle that ourselves. Also, all of the framing is now complete, and we’ve passed the first round of city inspections. It’s really coming along, and *crossing fingers* without any major hiccups.

To wrap up, here are just a couple more shots:


The last update I want to share, but will save for a later post, is a design change I recently made. I’ve decided to make an adjustment to the floor plan a bit. It doesn’t change anything that’s been built already, but it is kind of a big change, so stay tuned.

Until then, we’re hanging drywall, even as I write this. The spaces are really feeling like rooms now and I can’t wait to share the next update!

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