Sunday, September 10, 2006

Sunday's home improvement update

Let's begin with a bit of screaming about a stupidity. Detail of the trim strips On Friday I bought the trim strips for the doorways, and I chose real wood with a couple raised lines and an ivy pattern etched into it. (The regular trim strips were not only not all that good, but they were all fake wood. The one closest to the shape of what had been used in here [and it was real wood] was made of what looked like styrofoam!) I got the tops and three of the side pieces done, but the fourth side I messed up on -- cut the wrong end of the strip in the mitre. So I go back to the store, get a replacement, come home and... see illustration, it's screwed up on the end and where the cut should be there are no raised lines. It was too late to go back to the store, so I had to put off replacing the replacement until Sunday, when I was really hoping we could just start painting the strips without spending hours screwing around beforehand... we find enough excuses not to get started as it is. Anyhow, on Sunday I returned the strip and they happily exchanged it with a good one (I didn't say perfect) so the show can go on, and all trim strips have been tweaked to fit around the hinges & strikeplates. We're deciding whether to lightly paint the trim some shade of green we own or stain it the same maple color as the vanity/cabinet.

Saturday, as mentioned last entry, we went to Yakima to visit friends and relatives, thus no home improvements were done. One significant note: A week ago when we went to Packwood, Paige's mother asked us days before to come see her and we declined because we knew we would be busy. Well, it turned out her entire family came over to mother's house and they wondered where we were. Uh, no one ever mentioned a family gathering beforehand or we would have made the time. I know for a fact that her mom has been hanging out with my mom, at the health club, but we're both frankly surprised that her mom (and three sibs) would start acting like my mom as a result. Mush in triplicate Our time with her mom and one sib (other sib and lesbo-sib-in-law were at work) was pretty okay, once I figured out where the hell everyone was (hint: the opposite side of town from where they said they'd be).

So before the trim debacle, I got the medicine cabinet up. The instructions say to get help mounting it, but since my coworker was Paige the extent of her help was getting the thing aligned... I used the drawers from the old vanity to prop up the medicine chest while I attached it to the wall. I also bought a studfinder, which identified the studs as being 16" apart... the pre-drilled holes in the cabinet were 18½" apart. I wound up drilling holes 1" inward from the existing holes, and managed to cover the outline of the previous medicine cabinets when it was up. Email me your girls JD Also completed on Friday night was putting in a transitional piece of wood (a reducer) between the hardwood hallway floor and the tile bathroom floor... see illustration, which I can't call exciting but since this item is something people normally take for granted my cutting it to the size and contour of the doorframe then putting it in is at least noteworthy.

I'm holding off on taking the picture of the cove tiles, which I grouted tonight. We bought this silicone caulk for putting around the tops of the cove tiles and between materials (tile and wood, tile and the tub, etc.) which is the same silver-grey as the grout, and once that's been applied you'll get a gander. At least this time I wised up -- instead of making a 25 pound bag of grout and letting it dry in the bucket, I used half of a 10 pound box and got everything rinsed out before it could get crunchy. I made it a little wetter than the directions say because I was going to pipe it into the crevaces with a cake decorating bag instead of spreading it with a float, and I hope this does not have a negative effect on the final result. Anyhow, we're almost done with the project and Paige has already said she's going to start yanking down those decorative wallpaper borders in the kitchen... you know, the ones the previous crackheads put up then painted over/around?

Egads! Your face is emitting beams of light!
You know I'm bright, Illiterate...
You're almost finished! Then you get to start all over again with the kitchen.

As far as our house goes, we were informed today that all the cabinetry is in. All that's left to do now is the flooring (tile & carpet), counter tops, toilets/sinks/showers, and finish the stonework on the front of the house. They are still waiting for the stone to arrive. Grrrr!

I think you should stain the ivy trim to match the vanity. That's just MY humble opinion.

I look forward to seeing photos of the finished product. You & Paige could write a good, common sense how-to manual.
Heh, she's looking forward to the kitchen more than I am. She wisely points out that we have two bathrooms so we can use one while the other's up on blocks, but as for the cuchina... only one, so there's gotta be a way to keep it semi-functional while the work gets done. I have no idea about how that happens; some parts are easy to figure, like refacing cabinets doesn't interfere with anything and painting shouldn't get in the way of some activities (using the fridge is okay, using the counter may not be) and new countertops can be worked around, but as for a new floor?!

Paige bought some stain today, so it looks like the trim will be stained to match the other wood. Not a precise match but extremely charming it's gonna be anyway. As for us writing a common-sense how-to manual... that could be an adventure in itself. We read no less than six books when we were getting the tile ideas and instructions together, and we even have two books and a video on how to install a toilet (and I wound up only using the trilingual sheet that came with the toilet).

Ugh, sorry about the wait for your stonework. The rest shouldn't ake more than two weeks if you have concurrently-working professional installers -- one extra week if you don't, or if you do yet you like to BREATHE when you're indoors. :)
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