Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Post Weekend Check-in

Hey All,

Is anyone else ready for fall to hurry up and get here already?  I miss the days of sweaters, tights, and being able to spend more than thirty seconds outside without wanting to die from heatstroke. Obviously you all already know that the heat has been brutal, but I just wanted to complain for a minute.  You know how I am.

Now, on to updates!

We had planned on staining the floors this weekend, but that didn't happen.  You know why, and let's not talk about it for a while yet.  I'm still feeling a little tender about it.  So, with staining off the table, we moved on to completing a handful of smaller tasks.  Gotta get Kurt those sweet, sweet check marks for the list! ;)

We started with the chandelier for the dining room.  I'd been slowly working on getting it together since I scored it as a primo Prime Day deal.  I'll just run you through the pictures real quick...

The box on the right contained all the parts...its size wasn't promising...

After reading the instructions I started to worry.
So basically, you put 18 of these arms into the ball.  Easy enough, right? 

Electrician cat!

Boom.  Now on to tackling the wire situation.

Soooo now it's just a matter of connecting 18 white wires, and 18 black wires, all in a space as big as my fist.  

And finally, here's the finished product! Oh, what's that you say?  This looks like a different light?  Welllllll now that you mention it.  It turns out that when one of the reviews for the lovely Sputnik light said "It should come with an apology to husbands everywhere.", they weren't kidding.  The pieces wouldn't all fit together for the actual hanging bit, it was still 1000 degrees, my ankle was killing me from standing on the ladder, and we gave up.   There's no shame in that.  We went to Lowes, picked up this puppy, and we were done in no time.
In the end, I'm much happier with the brushed nickle finish, and I don't think I would've been happy with the black Sputnik light after all.  So, back to Amazon it goes!

In this picture you can see that with a lot of scrubbing (read a few hours on Friday night) most of the white paint came up off the floor.  I need to sand a few spots, but really, it's no big deal.

In other news, we switched out all of the outlets in the living and dining rooms!  Talk about another task that was harder than it ever should've been.  Woof.  Oh well. It's done, and that's all that matters!  That was definitely a little thing that makes a big difference.  Now all of the outlets are grounded, and have three prong holes, where most of them only had two before.  There's also the added bonus that these have never been painted-let alone painted multiple times!  (I really think someone should call those people and tell them it's dangerous to paint the outlets.  But instead I'll settle for a promise from all of you that you'll never commit such a sin. :)

The ceilings in the living and dining rooms have officially been spackled, sanded and painted.

I can never get over how good looking this guy is.  Insert wolf whistle here!
It'll come as no surprise to you guys, but I'm terrible at painting the ceilings.  It hurts my neck to stare up at them, I get whiny, it's really a bad scene.  Kurt on the other hand, never whines.  It's an admirable trait I'm hoping to learn someday.

Finally, we hung up the curtains in the master bedroom.  We're like three checks on the to-do-list away from being able to call it completely done!  I'm sure that will be a relief to some of you.  Once we get through a few more things we'll be ready to do a great big reveal!  I'm sad to report that the John Cena fathead is gone, but maybe I can find an action figure or something to honor his memory?  I'll work on that.

I'm starting to feel tired, but there's no rest for the wicked-or for those who tore most of an 1800 square foot house apart with little to no idea for how to put it back together... In five years or so, this is going to be a really nice house! It'll get there, I'm too stubborn to stop until is has!


Steve Miller Band - The Joker

Friday, July 22, 2016

There's no use crying over spilled paint, but that's never stopped me...

Happy Friday Everyone!

Is everyone else as happy as I am that it's Friday?  Woof, this was a log rough week.  Well, that's not entirely fair...the beginning of the week was wonderful, and yesterday was a train wreck.  After a looooooooong emotional day at work, I decided I'd try to get a jump start on painting the ceilings before Kurt got there.  But you know me, and you know what they say about good intentions.....I swear, I was only home alone for ten minutes--max!  And yet:

Has anyone ever dumped most of a gallon of paint on the floor?  What the hell are you supposed to do?!  How do you even begin to clean it up?! In the end, I still don't know, and I ended up wearing as much paint as there was on the floor.  Let me set the scene for you: there I am, in the dining room, on my hand and knees.  I'm literally dripping with paint, from my elbows to my hands, and my knees to my feet.  It's in my hair, it's on my face (because apparently when I'm in a panic I touch my face-who knew?). It's also on three walls, all the baseboards, the dryer, an end table (which was covered with tool, tape, and whatnot's).   In the process of trying to clean it up, I also ended up covering the kitchen, because, ya know, that's where the paper towels, bucket, and water were.

I thought I was doing an okay job, not of cleaning-that was a lost cause, but I was at least keeping it together!  Poor Kurt, what a scene he walked in on.  I felt so bad for making a mess, and being a mess that of course, I ended up sobbing in a puddle of paint.  You know me, and I assume you can absolutely imagine exactly what this looked like.

Here's the after picture.  This is after three rolls of paper towels, a few buckets of water, one king size bed sheet, and a whole lot of scrubbing.  Oh, and I'd been hosed down in the driveway before taking this picture.  Woof.  

So, "It's kind of a good news bad news situation here"  (that's how I greeted Kurt, but it still seems appropriate today).  

The bad news is, the floor is still a mess.  We couldn't get all of the paint up, and I'm not 100% sure yet how we will.  I'm totally open to suggestions on that one.  That means that the ceilings didn't get painted last night, so we're not staining the floors tonight.  There are other things we can work on, but this is a frustrating setback.  

The good news is, (and this is going to get mushy so go ahead and skip this part Mom) Kurt could not have handled this situation any better than he did.  I mean, damn.  He was calm, and kind, and there was no yelling, or jokes, or any number of things that could've made me feel worse.  Someone should give that guy an award for being able to calm me down--because you all know that is no easy feat.  It makes my eyes all misty just thinking about it.  He's a keeper for sure! 

Today, I feel a little silly, and my hands and legs still have some paint on them.  But I'm feeling fine about the whole thing.  Kurt made a really good point, that if this was going to happen, there really couldn't have been a better time.  We didn't just lay down new carpet, the floors weren't just refinished, and this situation is totally workable.  And hey, if I only dump one can of paint out of 20, then really, that's not terrible, right?

Someday, this will probably make for a really funny story.  That day probably isn't today, but I'm looking forward the day when we can laugh about this, and my hands aren't all covered in paint!


Tracy Lawrence - If The Good Die Young

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Slowly but surely

Hey Everybody!

People always say, "Slow and steady wins the race."  I'm not entirely sure that that particular colloquialism applies in this case, since the only thing I'm really racing is my own self-imposed five year timeline, but I've been trying to internalize it just the same.

The last few weeks/weekends have been mostly work, and very little play, which makes Jane a dull girl.  (Sorry, apparently I'm very into proverbs today?)  So, this weekend I put an official ban on any housework for Kurt and I.  I'm not sure if he'd agree, but I know that I definitely needed the break!!  Between Friday evening, and Saturday, it was pretty much a perfect weekend in my book! I usually try to only/mostly write about house stuff, but I feel like it's okay to chronicle our adventures here too....skip ahead if this doesn't interest you--but my memory can't be trusted unless I write stuff down!

Friday Afternoon:
We had intended to go to the Essen Haus for pie, and then hitting the county fair.  Luckily, Kurt can somehow read my mind, and we ended up taking a nap, and then heading to the fair.  Waiting until it had cooled off outside was DEFINITELY the right call here.  We ended up getting corn-dogs, and some awesome wood fired pizza. Being the sweet man that he is, he offered to split a pretzel too, but I was afraid I'd explode  that would be a megacarboverload, so we skipped it, in lieu of our dessert intentions....

The thing in the top left corner is deep fried oreos...you can see where this is going...

This is a taco of sorts, with deep fried oreos inside of an elephant ear.  

Watching him make and eat this masterpiece should really confirm for anyone out there that he's the one for me.
I won't post the picture of him actually biting into it, but trust me--he liked it.

As penance for posting that picture of him , here's a suuuuuper flattering shot of me shoving funnel cake and deep fried oreos in my mouth at the same time.  (I wasn't willing to make mine into a taco.)

All in all, it was a FANTASTIC night at the fair....and Kurt bought me cotton candy as we were leaving....which we took home and ate while we watched Netflix.  ::Insert heart eyes emoji here::


I still feel a teeny-tiny bit bad....like we did exactly what I wanted all day, and nothing else. Hopefully Kurt didn't mind toooooo terribly much.  

We woke up reasonably early (for us), and headed to Goshen.  Hit up Goshen Floor Mart, and found the flooring I like for the laundry room, got Kurt's approval for it, and found out it's pretty significantly cheaper there.  Boom!  

This is a terrible picture, but hey, it's what I like! 

After that, we cruised downtown, to one of our favorite spots--Ignition Records! This place was a lucky find from a couple of weeks ago.  We've found some real gems here!  

Then we headed to Das Essen Haus for lunch, and PIE!  Sadly, there are no pictures.  I was too hungry to stop and take any.  Our waiter sold me on trying Raspberry Chocolate Cream pie--and it was totally awesome! 

Once lunch was over, we headed to Fort Wayne to hit the other three record stores, and chase some Pokemon.  We're totally adults, I promise...usually.  Which is why we decided to go see the new Ghost-busters movie!  We loaded my purse up with gas station candy, and hit the theater!  As a side note, we dumped a box of sno-caps, and a box of milk duds.  It turns out that neither of us loves caramel, but the sno-caps were a total win!  The movie was pretty hilarious, and a perfect end to a perfect day together!   

On Sunday, after Kurt when home, I decided that it was time for me to get back to work.  As usual, it doesn't look like much, but I promise that this took hooooouuuuurs of work.  

Here's a quick flash back to what it looked like when I moved it....

I dare you to tell me that this doens't look infinitely better!  Sure, it may be unfinished right now, but dang.  In less than two months, to have made this much progress, I'm feelin' pretty alright! 

I think that this is about as good as it's going to get for scraping the varnish off of the stairs.  Now I just need to hit them with the sander!  This is such a filthy job.  Ugh.  The varnish just turns to dust as you scrap, and that crap gets everywhere. If you happen to be sweaty, forget about it. The dust will get on you and make a sticky-varnishy, itchy mess.  Bleh.  Oh well, the bottom part of the stairs is done, and ready for the next step!   I'm just going to pretend that this didn't take five hours....and that the top portion of the stairs (above the landing) won't take another five hours, or more.  In the end, it'll all be worth it.  Slow and steady, right?


The Raconteurs - Steady as She Goes

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Stairway to....this is NOT Heaven

Hey Everybody!

It's been a long week so far.  Is it just me, or does it seem like the week after a holiday week is always extra long?  Part of why this week feels so long is because of the nature of the work that I've been doing around the house.

There's really not too much to show, but that's not because it hasn't been hooooouuuuurssssss of work.  Seriously, I think I worked for two hours last night, with not too much to show for it.  But as  we all know, it'll be worth it, eventually.

 So, as you can see, almost all of the white paint is gone from the stairs themselves, and the trim along the stairs.  That was pretty simple, all things considered. The thing that takes longer is, the old varnish.  See how the risers on the two steps at the bottom of the picture above are still dark, and kind of shiny? Varnish. Horrible. Old. Varnish.

When you put stripper on it, it gets weird and gummy.  Bleh.  You can't scrape it.  You can't strip it.  What the hell am I supposed to do with it?!?!  After asking the internet, and all the men I could find at Menards, the answer was basically ::BLANK STARES::...Woof.

In a moment of frustration, I started just picking at some varnish that hadn't been hit with stripper, and to my surprise, it came of pretty easily!

After a solid three hours of working, I have FOUR stairs that are scraped and ready to be hit with the sander.  In other news: my thumbs are still numb.  I'm telling myself, "Hey Self, if you lose feeling in your hands, you'll be able to work for a lot longer!"  We'll see tonight if that logic holds up....

If anyone has any other suggestions for how to get this varnish off, I'm all ears!


Sorry for the unoriginal song choices today.....like I said, it's been a long week!  

Led Zeppelin - Stairway to Heaven

AC/DC - Highway to Hell

CSN - Long Time Gone

Monday, July 11, 2016

Post Weekend Check-In

Hi All!

What a long weekend that turned out to be!  It feels like I might just be tired forever!  As many of you know, we had a looooong list of things to do this weekend.  I'm happy to report that a good chunk of them were crossed off--welllllll okay, a more truthful answer would be that some of the biggest things to do were crossed of.

So, Friday afternoon, I ducked out of work a few minutes early to go pick this bad boy up.  The good news is, you can rent hardcore floor sanders at Menards (where they now greet me by name-practically).  The bad news is, you can't make a reservation for one of these things.  If it's there when you want it, great.  If it's not there when you want it, sorry 'bout ya. Today was my lucky day....plus I stalked the store at lunch on Friday to make sure that it was still there.  :D

Getting this thing into and out of the car is the worst part....that and stairs...but apparently, I've blocked carrying it up the stairs from my memory.  I'm prone to conveniences like that.  

Here's a quick reminder of what the smallest bedroom looked like before.  We decided to start in here since the floors were in the best shape here, and because well, if you mess up the littlest room, you just throw down a rug and no one ever knows  :)

And here's what the floors looked like after sanding!  

It's hard to get a good picture with the westward facing windows here, and it being close to sunset.  Sorry guys...someone should talk to Kurt about taking over photography duties!  

After making quick work of the littlest bedroom, it was down the hall to the middle bedroom.  Please take note of the stripped woodwork in this hallway.  The white trim being gone makes me feel so good!  Oh, and I'm not even a little mad that all that brown is gone.  That blue carpet is becoming a faded memory!

This went on for a few hours.  Kurt worked the big sander, and when he finished a room, I'd go in and hit the perimeter with a hand sander. With the big boy, there are always three or four inches around the outside of the room that you just can't reach.  In the master bedroom we hit that perimeter with stripper....which caused some trouble getting even stain coloring.  C'est la vie! Live and learn.

After a few hours, we moved downstairs to hit the living room and dining room.

Come on.  Guys.  Come on.  This is so much better.  I can't believe they covered these beautiful floors with carpet.  I just. Can't.  Even. 

While these two worker bees got down to business, Chase decided to tackle the task of painting the top of the stairs.  This "tall work" as Kurt calls is, is just beyond my reach....get it?  You love me.  I love you too, and puns.

Okay, remember how this was the last bit of remaining terrible paint?  Sorry for the crazy perspective here, I'm going to guess that the ceiling must be at least 22 feet away from here.  Seriously, that's my guess.  I'll put a tape measure on it later if that'll convince you!

Now I know what you're thinking...Chase is tall--but he's not 22 feet tall.  How the hell is he going to make this happen?  Well let me tell you, that boy is inventive if nothing else!

What you're looking at here is: two ladders, tied together with an extension cord, with a towel taped around the top step of the top ladder--to protect the paint, of course!

See those two things that seem to be sticking out of the ceiling, above the top ladder?  Those, are Chase's feet.  Heaven help us all.  Kurt had to stop sanding and go supervise the tall-work.  It was almost more than our poor mother's nerves could handle.  OSHA certainly would not approve!

But thankfully, in the end, all is well and well painted!!  That means the last of the horrible, terrible, no good paint from the previous owners is OFFICIALLY GONE!  Can I get a WOO HOO?!?!

I'm so happy to report that it's finally starting to feel like my house.  Or at the very least, it's starting to feel like not the Weavers' house.  That's a really nice feeling.  Thanks to everyone who's contributed to working around the house, dealt with my (at times I'm sure) incessant chatter about house stuff, and to everyone who's following along here!  It still feels like a total cluster at times (read most times, for people who aren't me lol), but this place has seen an INSANE amount of progress so far.  And the best part is, there's still so much progress yet to come!

In completely unrelated news, I've started mowing my own lawn.  Apparently I can't just wait for Chase to show up and do it for me all the time.  I'd like to go ahead and apologize now to anyone who has seen, or will likely be seeing me in my bathing suit top and shorts out there mowing...though the bigger apology should probably be to anyone who can hear me singing over the lawnmower.  Woof.  Amiright?  ;)

Check back later this week--::fingers crossed:: for some freshly stained floors this week!  


Something for everyone this week--we're covering the extremes apparently!  Haha what I listen to at work, and while I work on the house seems to vary wildly! 

Paul Simon - Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Quick Update - Dining room!

Hey All!

Two posts in one week--what the heck is happening here?! Well, once you see this amazing progress, you'll understand why I couldn't keep this to myself!  So, do you remember what the dining room looked like originally?  It's come a looooooong way!  Unfortunately, you can't really see that....because I don't have a single

Here's the best before.  This was during the inspection.  "Blow My Brains Out Red" 

This horrible blue carpet continued into the dining room.  

Even just crazy person primer made a world of difference!  

Cats are excellent painters.  You can see from his face, he's sick of that blue carpet.  

The cat immediately preferred the linoleum!  

In the process of ripping up the carpet, we realized that there's hardwood under there!  I was a little sad that the linoleum wasn't salvageable, but it's hard to be too sad when you  know there's original hardwood...

You can see that we lasted all of one day before going to town here.  Kurt just grabbed a piece and pulled.  It looked so satisfying, I had to get in on the action!!
As always, I am so thankful for him!  Here he is taking up the tack strips so we could finish pulling the linoleum up.  My poor bruised thumb (from smacking it with a hammer) says "THANK YOU!"

So, here's where we're at.  Down to the hardwood, painted, and ready to be sanded!  OH!  And the wallpaper samples Arrived!  This was definitely a dud for the laundry room, but it's certainly growing on me as a potential for this space!!

Imagine the whole back wall with this wall paper, and a white fluffy rug under that sweet Formica dinette table!

Oh yeahhhh.  That's what I like.  Let me know what you think!  :)  This weekend, we're going to try to get the rest of the house sanded...fingers crossed that we're able to get the sander from Menards, and that we can knock out the rest of the hard work!  After sanding, I think that all of the major, multiples hours required projects, will be completed!  Woooooo! (Please tell me you imagined me doing my best Rick Flair impersonation there....if not, go back and read it again!  ;)


Brinsley Schwarz - Surrender to the Rhythm

Ducks Deluxe - 1974

I don't know what's gotten into me, but I can't get enough of this sound lately!  I'm not sure that this counts as classic rock, but gosh it makes me want to dance!

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Progress After the Long Weekend!

Hi All!

Well, believe it or not, I think that we're finally making some progress--and all it took was a long weekend.  After working for a little bit on Friday night, most of Saturday, all of Sunday, and about half of Monday, here's where everything stands!

Laundry Room:

So really, nearly all of the work is done here. Everything that could be done this weekend, was done!  That's kind of a big deal.

This is where we last saw the laundry room.  Don't worry, I gave the floor a serious scrub.  Bleh.  

Here are the new (to me) washer and dryer, installed and ready to go!  Plus, that awesome Homart utility sink.  I seriously love that thing.  

Cabinet one--up!  Putting them up with two people was really much better than taking them down by myself.  No feet were injured in the making of this photo. 

Boom!  All three cabinets up!  Notice the level up top there? I'll have you know, that Kurt didn't even put the level on anything except the cabinets.  Let this be a lesson to you, dear brother.  

Even with the drill, we had to go back and tighten the screws in the rest of the way by hand. 

TA-DAAAAA!!  Man, this just feels so much better!  I really think that it just makes more sense to have all of the cabinets on one wall above the washer and dryer.  

You may have noticed, there's a bit of dead space at the end of the row of cabinets.  There was one more small (read short height wise) cabinet, but it was too long for this space.  This lead to the question, what the heck do you do with 19 inches of dead space that doesn't look weird?

It seemed like a hanging bar was a pretty obvious choice!  Getting the guys at the hardware store to understand what I was looking to do was surprisingly difficult, but eventually I got exactly what I wanted!  Simple.  Functional.  Matching.

I don't want to hang the drying bar yet, since I want to wallpaper the wall to the left in the photo below.  Hopefully the rest of the wallpaper samples arrive in the next day or two.

This will hang up at the top of the cabinets once we're ready to install it! 

In other news around the house:  Kurt made me make a list of every single thing that needs to be done.  I really didn't want to make the list--which is saying something, because you know that I love lists!  It just seemed like, if I committed to actually writing out a list, I'd get overwhelmed.  The good news is, I gave him the list and he said "Oh, it's not that bad" and then promptly reorganized my list, and started giving me tasks!  It's funny how people are different.  Now I've become super motivated to complete tasks so that he can cross them off the list.  :)  There's no joy for me in crossing things off, but if he likes it, then it's worth it to me!

With that spirit in mind we knocked out a few more things!

Kurt hung this (second) new light in the upstairs hallway.  SO much better than the weird bare bulb that was here before!  (Don't worry, I've since replaced the one missing bulb.)

Kurt got busy painting the handrail for the stairway.  I'm so thankful he did--not having a handrail was really a hazard.  

I've learned it's a good idea to let him do the finish work.  He's much more patient that I am with these things.  
We also hung the handrail back up, but of course, I didn't take a picture of that.  You know how I am.  Forgetful. Plus,  I was still drunk on pizza at this point.  I swear I ate half of a large pizza.  That's what happens when I don't eat till 4pm!

There were a bunch of other little things we did that hardly seem photo worthy.  I'll just list them, for curious minds.  Everyone else can just scrolllll ooooon dooooooown.  (we've been watching game shows on Sunday nights.  I couldn't resist!)

Painted the trim in the laundry room
Second coat of paint on the cabinet doors and cabinets
Scrubbed cabinet handles, so they're ready to be put back on the doors!
Went and bought all new screws to attach the doors, and the handles.
Put everything in the laundry room back together so that it's fully functional.  Yay!
Sanded the master bedroom
Vacuumed the floor
Started staining the trim in the bedroom
Waited impatiently for the trim to never dry (never may be an exaggeration)
Worked on stripping the rest of the stairs (this is going to take a lot more time)
Applied two coats of stain to the master bedroom floor (pics to come!)
Cleaned the kitchen
Ripped up the carpet in the dining room (Sorry mom!  Again, pics to come!)
Made tasty pretzel roll buns

Ok, so maybe it doesn't look like that much work all listed out, but I'll keep working on it!  Like I said, I'm ready to start crossing things off of the list!  (Mostly to get rid of the list-it is stressful for me to have that thing floating around out in the world on paper ;)

We've got a lot left to do, but we've come a long way, baby!  Tonight we've got some work on the schedule, and I'll try to remember to take some pictures of other progress around the house.  Ya'll are probably tired of looking at this laundry room. :D


Nick Lowe-You're My Wildest Dream