Lincoln Avenue: A long overdue update

Lincoln Avenue: A long overdue update

Well, it's been a bit of a turbulent time over here at Spruce and Pine. I haven't written in awhile but many of you have been so kind and curious to know what is going on. So, it's high time I fill you in.

Here's the quick story. We put the house on the market in mid-December. I know, not a great time. We had two open houses. They were both successful but the right family had not walked through the door. At this point, we were 1.5 weeks before Christmas. So, rather than having it sit on the market through the holidays, we pulled it off MLS. 

Fun times with permits

Since we were so rushed to go on the market, we hadn't gotten our final inspection. It all went well, except one thing that we didn't expect. The stair railing. I guess, at some point in time, the code changed so that upper story railings needed to be 42" so that people would have a hard time catapulting themselves over them. But, geez, 42" is tall. That's almost to my rib cage. 

Here are a few pictures of the gorgeous railings before we had to demo and start over. Well not really but it was a lot of work. 

And here they are!

Lance did an amazing job and now I think they are even more beautiful than they were before!


Next project: Aligning with our exterior vision

So, here is a picture of the house with the trees we had put in. For the record, this was not the advice of my talented landscape designer, Audrey Newell at The Foxy Garden in SF. It was an ordering mistake on my part after being completely overwhelmed by the entire landscape project. If you remember, these were the second order of trees sent after we sent back the other one (yes, paying massively for each delivery).

But my vision had been different. I had always imagined a short wall with a screen of short trees or bushes that would not only screen the house from the street to provide a bit of privacy but also be a screen to look out at from the inside of the house. 

This was the vision shot. It was an "after" shot from Sunset magazine. 

This was the vision shot. It was an "after" shot from Sunset magazine. 

So, after much hemming and hawing, we decided to undertake the semi-massive project which entailed giving the trees to a new loving owner. This meant pushing back all the gravel and weed cloth and pulling up all the water lines (all of which I did). Then finding replacement trees and pots.

I have always been a big fan of potted Olive trees. They remind me of a beautiful restaurant courtyard in San Miguel. Putting them in pots allowed us to gain the height without having to have more 24" boxed trees delivered. This was the idea of our talented friends at Finley Family Farms.

We found these dark gray, concrete planters locally. There were 5 available. And we needed 5. It was serendipitous. 

Here's a before and after. Makes a big difference, eh?


The Master Bathroom

For all of you loyal followers, you know that this room has been the bane of our existence. We had such big dreams for this room and they really fell flat as soon as we realized how much room we had boxed ourselves into. You also saw the nightmare that the Carerra tile floor became when we didn't order enough. Next we found out that there was a code that made us push the glass shower wall out farther than we ever wanted it. 

Well, here's the doozie: the curbless shower floor was not graded properly so the water, which should be going nicely down the drain, now flows across the room. This is way beyond a "disaster of the week". So we had to come up with a solution. The solution: Enclose the shower.

So after many a meeting with our amazing glass guys, we came up with a design that not only enclosed the shower but also gave more space for walking through (to perhaps visit the toilet).

Here's an example of the sort of thing we have just ordered.

Here's an example of the sort of thing we have just ordered.

Disaster of the Week

The guys showed up yesterday to install the shower and apparently they templated wrong and the glass didn't fit. So hopefully they'll be back in a few days to install.

Coming Soon

We are looking forward to 5 solid days of rain. So we are delaying putting the house back on the market until the following week. We are looking forward to sunny days and people looking for their perfect home.

To see the full house tour, click here.


1. Flipping Lincoln Ave: Be brave...begin
2. Flipping Lincoln Ave: Yikes, this place is a mess
3. Flipping Lincoln Ave: Fun with tack strips
4. Flipping LIncoln Ave: Demo Day
5. Flipping Lincoln Ave: Ready Set Go!
6. Flipping Lincoln Ave: Up You Go    
7. Flipping Lincoln Ave: We're Deep In Now 
8. Flipping Lincoln Ave: Meet Cousin It
9. Flipping Lincoln Ave: It's a numbers game