Friday, September 30, 2011

Friday funday!

I managed to get a workout AND a shower in before Carlos showed up at 8 to finish cleanup on the ceiling and make sure it was up to his standards.  So, I jumped into the second coat of paint on the upper cupboards and lower upper cabinet doors.  By the way, I think I could be circus act now.  I prepped and painted those cabinets while standing on the granite, even straddling the oven when necessary =)  

Carlos finished up pretty early, so we got to admire the room before I had to mop the floor ANOTHER 3 times... and yes, he left it pretty darned clean!  That dust sticks to EVERYTHING.


Winston was pretty happy to have free range of the house back, but he got super-spooked while I put the glaze on the cabinets.  He stuck to me like glue - note the tail down.


So, that process of glazing looks a little wonky.  See?  You paint on the glaze and it beads up in places.  Don't fear, though, Jess, if you do this.  Once you start blotting it up with the special cheese cloth stuff that's in the kit, it looks beauti-mous.



But, the worst thing was that they looked a completely different color than they did yesterday.  I had a mini freak-out session (although they were the color I had originally hoped for...), but when we brought them into the kitchen, lo and behold, they were the same color.  If the lighting in the dining room had only been that way 2 days ago - or whenever I started on these darned things.



It started to really take shape and feel quite rewarding when I got the glazing done on the upper cabinets.  I did pull out the big ladder for this job, since it involved vigorous scrubbing without the option of holding on to the cabinets to steady myself.


If you look at it from the dining room, it kinda looks done...



Between the plastic in the dining room moving in disturbingly unpredictable ways and the noise and bother of the great room furniture being moved back into its place, Winston was way done in.  He spent so long guarding outdoors, I actually forgot he was out there!  When he did finally decide it might be safe to come in, he came to the conclusion that the only safe spot was in the corner in the kitchen, apparently.

That box of stuff used to be under the sink... but now there is a nice pull out garbage can there in its place.  I have to share my bargain on this one!  It's a two-can pull out thing.  It was the last one on clearance at the Home Depot yesterday.  The box was totally wrecked, but I figured that clearance = cheap!  The nice guy there had it price-checked - it turned out to be like $22!  Wahoo!  He brought it to the front for me, and the girl at the service desk looked at the box and asked if I had checked to see if it had everything.  I shrugged and said it was the last one.  So, because the box was wrecked, she told me she'd give me another $5 off - I didn't even think to ask!  Wahoo!


OK, so back to admiring our new ceiling.  The glaze on the cabinets has to dry for 8 hours, so I hope to get the clear protective coat on tomorrow morning before hanging with Sarah!!!  Then, I will be able to put the doors back up on Monday night or Tuesday morning.  OK... so, I spent the rest of the day cleaning.  (Slight lie - had to go deal with a rent-house issue and hang with my very first piano student, a special lady if I do say so myself!)  Everything in the house was covered in that darn dust.  So, lots of dusting (my least favorite household task), rearranging, putting away, and cleaning of all floors ensued.  Like, until 8pm.  However, the great room finally looks grand - and clean -  with that beautiful ceiling!

The random white wall is the beginning of what is going to be a task requiring a LOT of patience.  Carlos looked at the wall, laughed, and told us 1 coat of just that section would probably take an entire gallon of paint.  He's pretty close to spot-on.  That stuff soaks up the paint.  Pretty sure it's a conspiracy.

Anywho, we did some rearranging now that the boxes of paint are no longer in the room (they migrated to the kitchen...) and are really liking our newly expanded seating area!  It looks a little crazy with that primered wall, though =)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

They're growing on me. I think I like them.

Yes, that is the consensus of the evening.  We finally like the cabinets.  Please excuse my cell phone photography here... just too tired to use the camera, attach, upload, fix, upload to the internet, and then post here tonight.  Whew, even typing that makes me tired.


They don't have the knobs yet... hubby claims he's going to do a jig for these.  *do you like the way I dance?*  haha, yes I do know what he means.  P.S. I used power tools.  Those perfectly hung doors were hung by this empowered chica.  ohhhh yeahhh... and I got almost all of these off:


I couldn't get half of the really upper ones off.  Well, the top screw - it was too high and I am apparently too weak.  It made me feel a little better that even my knight in shining armor also made that terrible screw stripping noise when removing them for me (just not as much as I did).  Oh, wait, you say.  Those are... white?  Yes, those are quilter's white.  They have been deglossed and have gotten their first coat of paint already.  AND I took a break in the middle of the day to lunch with Angela!


Now, not all those doors would fit on the dining room table.  So, above you see the bottom row of the uppers... and the upper row... it's hanging out on the microwave.  Which apparently needs a professional  to install it.  Huh.  So for now, I will trip over it every time I have to get something from the "pantry."


Carlos also worked his magic on the ceiling.  I'll hafta get a better picture tomorrow, but check out this white lovely smoothness.


One more thing... I took a little break to work on a certain costume, and I pray it doesn't fall apart before it makes it to the little chicken...  I am pretty psyched.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Turning that frown upside down

On my way home from my run, a good 10 minutes before Carlos was due to be here, I see his trusty van in front of my house!  Wave to him, and let him in.  He gets down to work.  Wow, he is a hard worker and an artisan to boot.  He worked for several hours this morning and then came back again this evening.  Dad is in awe of his work, I think.

I worked more on prepping the kitchen cabinets (a seriously neverending task...) and then set up for....

Step 3.  Glaze the cabinets (optional).  Dear hubby decided to try first.  He did it, and I hated it.  I looked like we had just dragged the pristine cabinet through mud.  No lie.  Important tip #2 (I think?): the colors in the store are NOT anything like what they are in the box.  So, after much grumbling and watching the how-to video on Rustoleum's website, I opted to try again.  What was it going to hurt?  I was going to have to repaint it anyway.  *sigh*  So, I did.  It didn't look the way I had envisioned it might, but... well...


It wasn't terrible either.  I put it in the kitchen on the countertop so we could see the effect and then put up a drawer pull with it to see the combo.


Ok, so not what I had imagined, but it actually went really well with the granite.  So, I went for it.


They are VERY photogenic.  With some encouragement from hubby and Winston, I went ahead and glazed the cabinets, too.


We got to admire Carlos's work:


And Winston enjoyed Carlos being gone :)


So, the glaze on the cabinets then had to wait to dry 8 hours.  E-I-G-H-T hours, people.  Sheesh.  So, I moved on to replacing the knobs in our bathroom - bye-bye white ceramic knobs (I know, huge difference right...)!


I also filled in all the other big holes in the cabinets.  Two thoughts passed through my little head as I was doing this.  #1 Do we really need this many cabinets? and #2 Remind me why I decided against that Ikea kitchen again?



Hubby got the dining room curtains up, too!  It looks like quite the grand room, I think.  You'll hafta use some imagination and pretend the entire great room is not also occupying the room...  Mom and Dad got home in the middle of this installation, and both separately told me that the cabinets looked great.  Hmm... maybe they aren't that bad after all?



So, at 8:30 tonight, I was allowed to complete Step #4. Protective coat.  It's a wee bit gloppy.  But, it's officially on the entire lower cabinet area surrounding the stove.  All four cabinets (2 if you consider that they are pairs).  Woo!

Tomorrow at 9:00am, I am allowed to put the doors and drawers back in - but not shut them.  Tomorrow at 9:00pm, we can finally close said doors and drawers.  And tomorrow at 9:15am, I hope to start on the next small section of drawers and doors!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Vacation = Productivity!

This morning, Carlos arrived at 9 to begin on the ceiling.  Winston helped his "daddy" work.  I started in on the kitchen cabinets!


Step #1.  Clean cabinets.  Easy enough, right?  Well, that meant scrubbing them all down, filling the monster holes with wood filler, waiting for filler to dry, sanding, re-washing, then using the deglosser from the kit.  After the deglosser, you had to wait an hour.  So, I scrubbed the rest of the kitchen cabinets and taped off the insides of the cabinets I am getting ready to do while I waited.


So, their suggestion is to use 2x4s with drywall screws to hold up the doors so that you can paint the edges.  Did I have any 2x4s?  Nope.  So, I improvised.  The box comes with several nice small cardboard box-like inserts, so they became my pedestals.  I am doing a small section at a time so that a. I can feel as though I have actually accomplished something and b. I actually have enough room for the doors and drawers.  I threw a plastic dropcloth over the dining room table, plunked those bad boys down, and voila!  Instant cabinet factory:


The once lovely dining room is now a holding place for great room furniture... the ceiling looked better today after just one coat of spot mudding!


While the deglosser dried, I also finagled the new Ikea laundry cart into submission... er, rather, got most of it together, couldn't get one stupid screw in, and stood crossly while my hubby came to my rescue right before his afternoon call.  But, it is together now and is helping the laundry to feel a bit more organized!


Ok, just a bit, since the huge wet/dry vac is still living in there, but I can pretend.

Step #2. So, the cabinets' base coat goes on next.  You brush it on, let it dry 2-3 hours, and then do a second coat.  The base coat is really just the color you get the cabinets stuff tinted to.  So, I finished it up, headed to Garrett's (piano would NOT have been fun in the mess of the great room today!), and then after a Grandma visit, walk with Winston, and dinner, enough time had passed for coat numero dos.  Here it is after that second coat:



A thing of pre-French country beauty, I tell ya.  Travis is quite excited that we get to play with the glaze tomorrow.  He seems to think I am going to go through that whole painting process again if we do something we don't like.  He's crazy.  I am not doing that again!  (but you just never know)

Better go rest up, since Carlos is planning on being here a whole hour earlier tomorrow!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Ikea trip = success!

When we finally hit the road today, we had a mission - return close to $600 of stuff that we had originally bought for the kitchen (that we decided against using so we would have more storage and not another room in need of a ceiling re-do!) and buy other stuff instead, of course =)

We got the wall mount for our TV (we almost forgot it a second time), a new trash bin for our bathroom (oh the excitement!), a container for dog food, a new organizer for the laundry room, some knobs for our bathroom, and... drumroll please...

Purple curtains for the dining room (hopefully they will actually look the color that they are in real life when they are hung up and can be photographed in the daylight)!


Tomorrow, the process of fixing our sad great room ceiling begins.


So, after getting Yofuria in celebration of 2 years, we moved all the furniture out of the great room!


Tomorrow, while Travis is working, Winston is guarding, and Carlos is mudding our ceiling, I am going to start on the kitchen cabinets.  Important tip #1: when you buy the Rustoleum product, you hafta get the paint tinted before leaving the store.  Thankfully, Travis just got out into the parking lot before he read that on the box.  =)

Oh, and I am going to begin the nagging request for installing our new microwave =)

Happy 2nd Anniversary, Baby :)


Today marks 2 years of wedded bliss for us, working on our 2nd house, starting 2 new jobs.  It is a year of pairs for sure.  Here's to moving into another year of joys and sorrows, challenges and rewards, feeling rich and poor :) hand in hand...  Thanks to all of you who have supported us and our marriage thus far.


And to celebrate?  We're off to Ikea to return all those great things we got for the kitchen renovation that we have completely decided against! =)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Workweek accomplishments

So, it wasn't done.  The artiste needed a different brush and better light.  So, I headed over to Ace Hardware and got her 2 brushes.  The first was the fancy expensive one and THEN I thought that maybe the cheap one might make pretty brush strokes.  So, the artiste tells me that the cheap one did look really nice.  Unfortunately, $2.79 brushes leave brush bristles all over the wall.  So, she got going Monday night while I taught yoga and Dad got us Five Guys :)


She continued her hard work on Tuesday, and it started looking pretty fancy!


The artiste wasn't fully pleased with her work and went over several places twice.  I think the only reason Mom stopped painting and touching things up was because her hand was cramping so badly...

Anyway, I got to bring hubby home to a painted dining room!!!  I finished hanging things up today (it's been a pretty tiring week).  It's not a room that wants to be photographed.  I had to wait for daylight, and I'm not sure it still does it justice.  We also don't have any curtains.  Ok.  Enough excuses.  Let's remember what it did look like, shall we?


And now, drumroll please...





Sunday, September 18, 2011

Late night

Alright, Jessica, check out what time this one is being posted. =)  Shocked I'm still up.

Yes, everyone, I am blogging at the tender hour of 1AM.  The adrenaline from tonight's craziness is still pumping pretty hard, so I figured I might as well take advantage of it!

Things have continued to be a bit slow due to sickness plaguing both hubby and moi.  However, he found enough energy Friday afternoon to paint our bathroom.  The result?  The crazy zig-zags are gone, which is nice, but now we feel like it just says "half done".  Oh wait, that IS what it is saying :)  Anywho, here's now what you get to see when you walk in:


What is really missing is a close up of the floor.  That's for another time, though.  We also installed our new towel bars, shelf, and TP holder in there.  I spent most of today cleaning up the house - putting things back where they belong (after being displaced for various projects), unpacking the last box (WAHOO - well the last box until Mom and Dad move out and the "guest room" boxes get unpacked, but they're in a closet for now anyway), organizing parts of the great room, doing laundry, and cleaning all the floors.

There was a rumor floating around tonight that the dining room walls might be finished.  It would be pretty exciting if it's true, but we got home so late... it will be a good surprise for the morning.  Travis leaves for Chi-town tomorrow, and I am having a new phone line installed for him while he's gone.  Other than that, I don't have a clear plan for what we'll get done while he's up nawth.  I'll see if I can't do something to surprise him!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

A slow week...

...thanks to whatever I have come down with (and now whatever Travis has too)!  Winston has been setting a good example, though.  He says to relax...


Drink lots...


And sleep...


I have been trying to heed his wise advice.  In the meantime, Trav's two coats of metallic paint in the dining room still look uneven.   I read about it online (before my cable went out Monday - how mean is that - to be home with no TV and no real internet!!!) and determined that he should have gotten a special roller.  So, he took me on a field trip (the car ride wore me out) to Lowe's where he went in, got the roller, and a how-to pamphlet.  It appears all the techniques shown with it involve doing something to the paint after putting it on the wall.  We are now tossing around the idea of either trying one more coat on the wall with the special cover OR just going ahead and painting in a cross-hatch pattern.  There's been lots of time to consider both.

When Sarah and her mom came to visit this past weekend (and did I think to take pictures of them OR of our other Saturday guests, Michael, Alli and Bryan??? noooo of course not...), we were discussing how the fridge didn't fit.  Sarah's mom also pointed out that they then had to take lots of measurements before buying a microwave.  Oh, measurements?  Hmmmmm that'd be a good idea.  Trav measured the cabinet... and it's just over 13 inches deep.  Guess how deep microwaves are?  Oh, just 15 to 20 inches.  Then, in my extensive online research into this, I've discovered that they may actually HAVE to protrude from the cabinets in order to be able to open the doors.  So, when I'm better, we're taking a field trip to figure out whether we can get a microwave or whether we need to find a hood (different from the original one that we are still returning)... ah the joys of renovation =)

So sadly, I don't really have much renovation updating to do.  Lucky for us, I forgot that Travis painted his "office" this weekend!  He started out with a brown.  It looked like poop.  He got a sample, smeared it on the wall, and it was authentic.  Alli agreed.  So, he went with a beautiful muted green instead.  The room still has some unpacking to be done (our little green couch is buried under that... stuff), but I will share the wall color anyway...


Ok, just thinking about that has exhausted me =)  Back to my sickly post =)