Sunday, December 14, 2008

The Blue House

Starting at the bottom, you see the entrance to the subdivision, just beyond Mary Lee Clark Elementary on Mickler Drive.
Then you see exterior views of the house. The colors are a little off. The blue is a little richer and darker. What looks like white trim is actually more the color of egg nog. The carriage lamps, the house numbers, and the mail box are all actually brass.
Note the extra concrete pad I had poured in front of the front door to accommodate the ramp on my van.
Note that I had the kitchen counter tops and the upper cabinets lowered for easier access from a wheelchair. Note also the higher and more recessed toe kick.
The master bedroom originally had a bath on one side and a walk-in closet. I took out the walk-in closet (replaced it with a more traditional bi-fold door closet by moving one wall 30 inches into the LR space) in favor of a much larger, wheelchair accessible master bath.
I designed the cultured marble bath with a seat I can transfer onto from my wheelchair. Note that in addition to controls at my end, there is a regular shower and controls at the other end.
The vanity is lower than usual and allows me to roll up under it a ways. Note the picture of the vanity where you see me in the mirror. Notice that you don't see a door to the bathroom. That's because I designed it with a pocket door which disappears into the wall. No open door taking up maneuvering space in the bathroom.
The higher toilet has plenty of space for rolling my chair up beside it.
All interior doors (save one) are 36 inches wide for easy passage.
Way, way, more convenient than the old retrofitted apartment.
The builder was Oscar Wells, owner of Baytown Homes, Inc.
His sales/office manager, Kenny Crocker, was most helpful. His CADD wizardry made turning my hand drawn to scale bathroom modifications actual blue prints in a jiffy.
Atlantic Marble, out of Jax, did the tub and vanity.
Kenny Boatright, local painter, did the painting.
I had additional, post-closing work done by:
Jay Ross (Ross Irrigation): irrigation system
DeLoach Fence
L&R Electrical, Inc.
Eagle Plumbing
Joe Cowatch (Cowatch Home Services)
All did excellent work.
Jack Barfield, Sr., an employee of Oscar Wells, was most helpful correcting a few design oversights on my part after the closing. I did not realize that I would need self-closing exterior doors ( via self-closing hinges) and brass kick plates on them (see front door) until after I moved in.


St Marys Resident said...


It all looks very nice...I can tell it is the home of a male...the toilet seat was left up! LOL You did a great job in planning everything out. My neighbor sure would like those wide doorways...he recently had surgery on his foot and had to use a wheel chair and walker for several was not until then that he realized that his bathroom door was only 24 inches wide...could not even get in the bathroom with a walker! All homes should be built handicap accessible because you never know when you might become disabled...even if it is only for a month. Congratulations on your new home!

Jay Moreno said...

Thank you. I have precisely one of those 24 inch doors in my palce - the "guest" bathroom. Changing that one would have involed changing the exterior dimensions of the house. I think the code should be changed to not even allow any interior door less than 30 inches. 24" is ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

Love those floors Jay. Happy homecoming:)

Jay Moreno said...


Those tile floors sure are easy to roll the old manual chair on.

When I get my federal first time home buyer's 15-year loan for $7,500, I'm seriously considering going ahead and ripping out the carpet fropm all but the bedrooms and replacing it with easy-rolling wood laminate.

Has anyone out there had Lowe's install laminate for them? How was the experience?

Who else might y'all recommend? I see a truck from Brunswick Flooring in the neighborhood all the time.

Anonymous said...

Speaking from experience, Jay I wouldn't go with the laminate. If at all possible try the bamboo. It is more user friendly. Laminate is cheap and it takes nothing to cause it to buckle. Bamboo is more durable and it looks a lot better. You can also get it and Sam's cheaper.