Imagine coming home to find this. I wasn't ready for it and I'm quite sick to my stomach at this moment.

The whole front of the house is stripped to the sheathing except up on the pediment...and my little test area for the new paint colors. I'm seeing the colors for the first time out from under the cover of the porch and I still love them.
I was hoping to see the clapboards underneath the shingles to see the outline of the original porch. Jared said the entire front was covered in clapboard so he ripped them off. So either they weren't the original clapboards or the clapboards were filled back in after the porch was removed.

170 years peeled away in 2 days.

This dark line just below the upper window is the only evidence of the angle of the original porch roof we can see.

A view of all the layers still visible at the front corner.
This fence post was originally tight to the vinyl siding. Can you imagine the weight of all of that material on the house?

I think she's breathing a big sigh of relief.

I got a few questions about the colors so I thought I'd share that. Here are a bunch of the colors I considered. I'd read a lot about Martha Stewart's Bedford Gray being a "nice neutral gray" so I went to Home Depot to get her color palette, not that I would use her paint (sorry, Martha) but I could at least use the color chip to match it to something in the Ben Moore fan deck.

I have to admit, the woman has some really beautiful colors in her palette. Maybe I could give it a try in one of my bathrooms or something. Each color card has two coordinating colors on the back that you can fold over to see what they would look like together. I think that's a really, really smart idea.
Here's Martha's house painted in her Bedford Gray. I think it's kind of a beige gray. There are some other nice grays like "Cement" "Zinc" and an almost-black brown gray called "Seal" that I think would look great in lieu of a true black accent.

I've discovered that the exterior color schemes I find the most pleasing are when the body of the house and the trim are same hue but just about two shades apart. I think grays are tough. Considering I have two neighbors whose houses are yellow, I really wanted to avoid any gray that could be interpreted as purple. Without getting into a color lesson, yellow and purple are complementary colors (opposites on the color wheel). Complementary colors intensify each other so a gray that might have more purple (red and blue) in it, would look more purple when juxtaposed with yellow. I know. Blah, blah, blah. I also really dislike the "cooler" grays that sometimes just look like a bad blue.

Long story short, I thought more of a browny gray would be safer and after narrowing those down, I chose the following Benjamin Moore colors:

House body: Graystone #1475
House trim: Silver Chain # 1472
Porch ceiling: Clear Skies #2054
Door: Black #2132-10 (and eventually the shutters)

I've chosen the black color so it matches the window mullions but there's a color called "Dragon's Breath" #1547 that's a really dark brown/almost black that I think would look awesome. Until I get the windows, I can't really make that decision.

Here's a photo I found, maybe on Flickr, of a room painted the "Graystone" color. If it's possible, I think it looks both modern and historical at the same time.

That's it for today.