There’s Always Something New for Bill to Do!

It is the working man who is the happy man. It is the idle man who is the miserable man. ~Benjamin Franklin

A man grows most tired while standing still. ~Chinese Proverb

A man is a worker. If he is not than he is nothing. ~Joseph Conrad

I’m not sure I or Bill agree about any of the above quotes! Case in point, Bill can work too much and then be miserable. He is exhausted every night and it’s not from standing still. And, now, I think Bill could be lots of things if he wasn’t working.

In honor of Father’s Day, I’m dedicating this blog post to Bill! He has worked so hard this past year, he would really like to have a vacation or at least a day off. But, truth be told, he won’t. At least not until we’ve moved in. He’s a worker bee. 🙂

Since I last posted, in the first two weeks, we didn’t have any contractors except the carpenter for several hours. In that time Bill always found something new to do – whether he planned it or not. He finished trimming out all the closets and put extra supports under every shelf. He installed my built-in ironing board in our closet, too.

One of the spare bedroom closets

One of the spare bedroom closets

Another spare bedroom closet

Another spare bedroom closet

Built-in ironing board with door closed

Built-in ironing board with door closed

Ironing Board cabinet with door open

Ironing Board cabinet with door open

Shelves to the right; straight ahead will be a mirror

Master closet: my shelves to the right; straight ahead will be a mirror

My area: long hanging clothes to the right; double-hanging rods on the left

My area: long hanging clothes to the right; double-hanging rods on the left

My shoe rack to the right; Bill's corner shelves to the left

My shoe rack to the right; Bill’s corner shelves to the left

Bill's double-hanging rods on the right; Bill's shoe racks and shelves on the left

Bill’s double-hanging rods on the right; Bill’s shoe racks and shelves on the left

Here is our master closet layout with small photos of where they fit into the space.

Master Closet Layout

Master Closet Layout

Our carpenter wanted to finish everything up and the last things on the list were installing the window seats and the fireplace mantel. After several emails and a phone call, I found out that our windows seats were being worked on. We were told that they would be re-made to fit our spaces. Turns out when our sales rep took the seats back to the cabinet makers, they said they would have to totally be made over. The sales rep said that would cost him too much so he brought them back to the local shop and re-worked them himself. (He was a cabinet-maker before becoming a sales rep.)

Last week he brought them out and right away Bill noticed that the drawers on one side of each seat were a different size than the one next to it. When Bill questioned how the sales rep re-worked the seats, he told Bill that he cut down one side on each seat and was having the cabinet-makers make new drawer fronts for the smaller drawers. Needless to say, we were not happy about the looks of the window seats. We had paid lots of money for them and expected them not to look “re-worked.” When we told the sales rep we would not accept the window seats, he said he would have them totally re-made for us. We had already waited 4 weeks to get them back and if we had new ones made it would be at least another 4-6 weeks. I finally asked if we could just have our money refunded and he said yes. So, that’s what we did.

Bill said he could make the window seats at a later time. I told him that we can wait and see what else might work in those spots. My whole idea for the seats was to sit by the window, drink my morning coffee, and watch the birds at the feeders or wildlife by the lake. Maybe a comfy chair with a table will work. I have some ideas, but that will be after we move in.

With the window seats out of the picture, Bill had our carpenter (Tim) install the baseboard around those areas. Tim installed the new built-in microwave. LOVE it!!!!

Built-in microwave above the wall oven

Built-in microwave above the wall oven

Microwave door open

Microwave door open

And, then Bill and Tim built the fireplace mantel. Bill built a prototype first and then he cut the wood. Here’s how it turned out. Excuse the mess.

Fireplace mantel

Fireplace mantel

Family room with fireplace mantel

Family room with fireplace mantel

This past week has been a very busy one at the house. The plumbers showed up early Monday morning and worked every day M-F. They spent a lot of time in the crawl space hooking up all the pipes. When they finally came up from down under, I got some pictures. They installed two reverse-osmosis systems which are tied together. (Bill installed the shelves for the tanks.)

Reverse Osmosis Systems

Reverse Osmosis Systems

They installed the gas water heater.

Water heater

Water heater

And, Friday they trenched and installed gas lines from the house to the pole barn (for Bill’s radiant heat system). Bill always seems to be in the mix of things. He’s the one in the dark shirt helping the plumber get the stuck trencher out of the mud.

Trenching for gas lines

Trenching for gas lines

During the week Bill worked on getting the laundry cabinets doors, drawer slides, drawers, and hardware installed. He also installed the laminate counter-top, laundry sink, and laundry faucet.

Doors on laundry cabinets

Doors on laundry cabinets

Drawers installed in my LARGE pantry cabinet

Drawers installed in the LARGE pantry cabinet

Counter-top, sink and faucet installed

Counter-top, sink and faucet installed

Pantry cabinet with doors and hardware installed

Pantry cabinet with doors and hardware installed

View from the kitchen

View from the kitchen

Sink doors and hardware installed. The blank area will house the ice-maker.

Sink doors and hardware installed. The blank area will house the ice-maker.

He also started installing some of the extras in the kitchen cabinets, like the blind corner cabinet shelving system. He said the Rev-A-Shelf directions were horrible!

Blind corner cabinet shelving

Blind corner cabinet shelving

Thursday, June 12, our granite was finally installed! We’ve never had granite before. I really like the looks of it. I’ve gotten used to what you can and cannot do with granite since I’ve cooked at Jill and Jim’s this past year. I still sometimes forget about softly placing dishes on the counter-top. 🙂 We had them put a sealer on all the granite pieces and we hope it helps to keep it looking nice and stain free as long as we clean it.

We are very happy about how it looks with our cabinets. The kitchen counter-tops are Sierra Ridge. It turned out to be lighter than I thought it would be, but I’m happy it is since the cabinets are dark.

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IMG_4748The island granite is Crema Bordeaux.

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This is close-up of island with Blanco Cafe Brown sink:

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Here is how it looks together:

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Master bath with Golden Sand granite and Porcelain rectangular sinks:

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Second bath with Golden Sand granite and oval sink:

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The gutters were installed Friday.

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Our carpenter’s wife is going to install our backsplash. Here is the front-runner in our tile selection. Small subway tiles which have a little variation in color. I didn’t want anything too busy.

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After the granite went in, we were relieved that the mirrors I bought over two years ago at Tuesday Morning in Indy will fit in our master bathroom. I didn’t want to buy new ones. Excuse the dust, cardboard and tag on the mirror. 🙂

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Plumbers will be back most of next week, too, to finish up. The painter is coming back next week to touch-up paint and stain indoors. He also has another coat of bronze trim outside to paint. And, the exterior of the laundry door needs to be painted bronze. HVAC needs to return for venting and hook-up our kitchen chimney exhaust fan. And electricians need to finish up. Ground is still so wet so we don’t know when we’ll get those septic laterals dug. Still a big hold-up for us. After the septic is done, the same excavator will do our final grading and then we can have the concrete poured for walkway, back patio, and driveway.

There is an end in sight! But, depending on weather who knows when that will be!

If We Knew Then What We Know Now

A house is made of walls and beams, but a home is built with hopes and dreams.

Oh, my goodness! This house is taking longer and longer to finish! Bill and I have said more than once . . . “Maybe we should have just gone up the road and contracted with that builder who could build a little shack in 60 days!” Well, yes, we could have had a house like that. And, we probably would have been moved in by now. But, would it have been the dream home we envisioned? Never! And, so, we keep plugging along hoping to see the light at the end of the house-building tunnel sooner than later.

General construction and scheduling frustrations are enough to put one over the edge. You can just imagine what we felt like the last couple of weeks when adding the following to the mix.

  • Ran out of trim material
  • Storms and torrential rain soaked the already wet ground
  • Microwave trim kit we special ordered along with our microwave over 2 years ago was the wrong kit and both have been discontinued
  • Granite delivery delayed for 4 weeks

Let’s talk about what did get done. The painters have worked a lot. On good weather days they painted the exterior lap siding and caulked and caulked and caulked and painted some more.

Siding painted - trim not painted

Siding painted – trim not painted

Back of house painted

Back of house painted

On bad weather days, the painters worked indoors putting second coats of paint on bedroom walls and patching up nail holes on any of the trim that the carpenters had installed. And, they did more staining and polying. That came later.

Wednesday, May 7, Bill and the carpenters worked all afternoon and into the early night installing the kitchen cabinets and island.

Night view of cabinets/island without doors and drawers

Night view of cabinets/island without doors and drawers looking from the family room

Cabinets/island from dining area view

Cabinets/island from dining area view

Close-up of exhaust fan cabinet

Close-up of exhaust fan cabinet

Close-up of cooktop cabinet in the middle flanked by dish drawers

Close-up of cooktop cabinet in the middle flanked by dish drawers

Upper cabinets above cooktop

Upper cabinets above cook-top

Side view of island without trim or book shelf

Side view of island without trim or book shelf

Here I am feeling how the space feels. I loved it!

Here I am seeing how the space feels. I loved it!

The carpenters said they would come back on Saturday to install the tongue-and-groove on the porch ceiling and install the beams in the family room. And, Tim (carpenter) suggested that if Bill could get the 12 sheets of plywood purchased, stained and polyed, they would work on our closets the following week.

Bill bought the plywood the next day and was determined he was going to stain and poly it himself. He spent a couple of hours building two platforms to hold the plywood while it dried. He started staining on Friday, May 9. Big big job! Unfortunately, the first batch of plywood Bill bought and loaded and unloaded from his trailer he found wasn’t the right plywood for the job. So, he took 11 pieces of the plywood back (one of them he had already stained) and spent the bigger bucks to get the better stuff. Of course, that meant loading and unloading the wrong stuff and loading and unloading the right stuff. The man is totally exhausted every night.

Staining away

Staining away

Stacks of plywood needing staining and polyed on both sides

Stacks of plywood needing staining and poly on both sides

Bill soon found out this was going to take a long time to finish this job by himself.

Saturday, the carpenters showed up and installed the porch ceiling.

Installing the tongue-and-groove porch ceiling

Installing the tongue-and-groove porch ceiling

We decided to put trim around the edges because the soffit was wavy (metal)

We decided to put trim around the edges because the soffit was wavy (metal)

Finished porch ceiling

Finished porch ceiling

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Tim and Mike started on the beams in the family room.

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The farther they got, they knew they didn’t have enough material to finish the ceiling beams. They inventoried what was left and this is the last beam they could install.

Last beam before running out of material

Last beam before running out of material

Originally, we had planned to run beams along the green area to enclose it. It was supposed to be like a coffer vaulted ceiling. However, after seeing how the beams looked as is, we all agreed not to enclose that part of the vault. It would have been too weighty and dark. The guys did some figuring and came up with the amount of material we needed to finish the ceiling beams. Bill called Fehrenbacher on Monday and got it ordered.

Since the carpenters couldn’t finish the beams, they installed crown molding on the kitchen cabinets.

Crown on the cabinets

Crown on the cabinets

Sunday, May 11, Bill started installing cabinet doors. The large cabinet to the right below is the refrigerator cabinet.

First cabinet doors installed

First cabinet doors installed

Then, he installed cabinet doors on the double-deckers. The top ones will have glass in them.

Second cabinet doors

Second cabinet doors

Monday, May 12, we had a full crew – geothermal drilling crew, painters, granite measuring, and garage door rep. Bill decided to ask the painters if they could finish up the staining and polying of the plywood and told them more trim would be coming in a couple of days and he wanted them to stain and poly it, too. Cha-ching! More money for materials and more money for labor. I was happy that Bill relinquished control of the staining since he had his hands full with cabinets and other stuff.

There was a big storm that hit the area on Friday, May 9. The worst of it hit south of us. Unfortunately, the geothermal guys’ shop got hit and they didn’t realize that their battery charger for their machinery wasn’t working until they came out to start digging. They spent a lot of time waiting for batteries to charge.

Geothermal diggers

Geothermal diggers

They worked sporadically Monday through Thursday that week and they made a big mess with all the mud.

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Mud was everywhere since they had to go across our rock driveway. What a mess! But, thank goodness, they were able to get the loops drilled with no other issues.

The granite guy came late morning and got everything measured for the kitchen counter-tops, island, and both bathroom vanities. It was all quite interesting how it is all done digitally. I got a call from our granite salesman two days later and said we actually saved almost $800 from our original estimate because after measuring we needed less. YAY!!!! But, the bad news was we have to wait until June 12 before they install the granite. That is holding up getting the plumbers here. They can’t come until after granite and sinks are installed. Ugghhh!

Granite measuring

Granite measuring

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The garage door rep showed up along with the customer service rep from the company from which we purchased the doors. They determined it was a factory-finish default and they would replace our doors. I hope the next doors don’t start cracking and peeling.

The painters worked everyday the week of May 12. They kept busy with staining and polying in-between rain showers. They worked indoors painting or patching. Bill picked up the trim material mid-week and they started staining that, too.

Tuesday, the carpenters returned and since there was no finished material yet, they installed all our door hardware.

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Front door hardware

Front door hardware

The electrician called Bill early Wednesday, May 14, to tell Bill they could come and work that day. The crew (7 guys) was at our house by 9:00. Thank goodness, Bill and I had opened and inventoried all our light fixtures, ceiling fans, outdoor lights, and flood lights, on Sunday. However, we didn’t have light bulbs yet as I had just ordered LED bulbs from homedepot.com the day before. They had the cheapest price. LED bulbs are not cheap. Try buying a whole house full of them! They will pay for themselves in the long run in energy savings and won’t have to be replace for a very long time.

Fan installed in one of the bedrooms

Fan installed in one of the bedrooms

Vanity lights in hall bathroom

Vanity lights in hall bathroom

Vanities installed in master bath

Vanities installed in master bath

Fan installed in Family Room

Fan installed in Family Room

Entry way ceiling light and sconces

Entry way ceiling light and sconces

Chandelier in dining area

Chandelier in dining area

Under cabinet outlets installed

Under cabinet outlets installed

Lights in the laundry room

Lights in the laundry room

Exterior lights (front porch and on each side of garage doors)

Exterior lights (front porch and on each side of garage doors)

Let there be light!!!

They used the bulbs we bought for the outdoor lights for the chandelier (we will replace with LED)

They used the bulbs we bought for the outdoor lights for the chandelier (we will replace with LED)

Can lights in kitchen

Can lights in kitchen

They installed all the outlets and light switches throughout the house. Also have electrical outlets on each side of island, next to the sit-down area of our vanity, and each side of the fireplace (where the mantle will be).

Light switches

Light switches

Outlets on side of island

Outlets on side of island

Outlet for my sit-down vanity

Outlet for my sit-down vanity

They wired up the wall oven and placed it in the cabinet. The carpenters later had to notch out an area on each side to fully install it.

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Even though these guys are so fast and efficient, we forgot how messy they were. They would rip open a box and throw it on the floor. They would cut pieces of wiring and throw the rest on the floor. And, remember all that mud outside? Yep, they drug it inside. I was so upset how it all looked after they were gone, I didn’t take any pictures of the inside mess.

The next morning after Bill moved a lot of the light fixture boxes out to the garage, here is what the garage looked like.

Mud mud mud

Mud mud mud

Boxes and boxes and boxes

Boxes and boxes and boxes and mud

I spent hours Thursday, May 15, tearing down cardboard boxes, separating trash from burn piles. Bill was emptying trash, burning, and trying to get the pole barn back in order. I swept mud and trash inside until my knee and back gave out again. Bill worked for hours afterwards sweeping and vacuuming the garage and inside the house. The next day I helped Bill stack trim in the garage and do more straightening up of the house before the carpenters came the next day.

Bill sweeping garage

Bill sweeping garage

Saturday, May 17, the carpenters came to finish up the beams, install the microwave and microwave trim kit, and do other things on the punch list.

Finished ceiling beams

Finished ceiling beams in Family Room

How the beams come down the vault

How the beams come down the vault

Trimmed out the island

Trimmed out the island

More island trim

More island trim

Trimmed out the garage windows

Trimmed out the garage windows

Trimmed the entry doorway from the garage to house

Trimmed the entry doorway from the garage to house

Installed the last door!

Installed the last door!

Installed the large beam that separates the family room from kitchen/dining

Installed the large beam that separates the family room from kitchen/dining

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Trimmed the garage attic drop-down stairs

Trimmed the garage attic drop-down stairs

Trimmed out the utility area in the garage

Trimmed out the utility area in the garage

While the carpenters were finishing up the trim items, Bill and I went for a Craig’s List find. I never really liked that oak antique desk that I originally bought to put in the entry and then decided to put in my computer area. The painters had stripped it but hadn’t painted it yet. Remember this?

Antique desk

Antique desk

Well, the Craig’s List find was a desk I LOVE and it’s going right inside the garage entry door. It will be the drop-off area. Drop off mail, purse, charging station for electronics, and house a land-line, if we decide to have one.

Craig's List desk

Craig’s List desk

It is a very heavy piece of furniture and looks good in its new home. In fact, it is the first piece of furniture we’ve already moved into the house.

New desk finds a home

New desk finds a home

So, the carpenters and Bill were trying to install the microwave trim kit and when they opened it all up, they found that it did not fit the microwave. The size was all wrong. Geesh! So, Bill asked me to find the receipt for it and he boxed the trim kit back up and we went to Lowe’s to see how we could handle returning an item we purchased over two years ago!

Turns out they discontinued that trim kit and so Lowe’s could not get us one. All of the Bosch appliances we ordered were special orders. Customer service didn’t know what to do for us. Finally, they called a sales rep from his dinner break and he came back and worked with us for a couple of hours. At one point, I found a trim kit online, but Lowe’s said if we didn’t buy something else from them, they would not refund us for the special order. Apparently, there is a 90 day limit on special orders. Read the fine print. I didn’t. Good to know.

We ended up ordering a true built-in Bosch microwave the next day after we went home and measured to make sure it would fit. It has a door that pulls down instead of from side to side. And, Lowe’s did us well. They credited us the full amount for returning the convection microwave and trim kit – which they will have to sell on clearance. And, they threw in a 3-year warranty. We had originally purchased a 4-year warranty which was non-refundable.

New microwave

New microwave

I did a little magic with my computer and plucked in a pix of the microwave where it will eventually be installed. It is due to be delivered in another week.

What microwave and wall oven will look like

What microwave and wall oven will look like

And, you can see from the above picture Bill has been busy getting doors installed on the cabinets.

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Since last week was a beautiful sunny week, the painters worked Monday and Tuesday and finished up spraying poly on all the plywood. And, they started painting the trim the bronze color. It is finally looking how I had envisioned it!

Bronze trim around the windows

Bronze trim around the windows

View from the road

View from the road

Close-up of front window trim

Close-up of front window trim

Front door trim painted

Front door trim and columns painted

Part of the back trim painted

Part of the back trim painted

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Trim around the garage doors painted bronze

Trim around the garage doors painted bronze

We asked Jim to call the excavator about digging the septic laterals. He said the ground was still too wet. Really???? He said if the rain held off until after Tuesday, May 27, he should be able to dig. Keeping our fingers crossed that it will happen. But, the forecast shows rain every day this week.

Thursday, May 22, our shower door was delivered. The installer was supposed to have called me Friday. I guess I’ll get in touch with him this week.

Shower door

Shower door

Tim the carpenter came Thursday afternoon and started installing closet systems. The guy is fast.

Double-door closet

Double-door closet in spare bedroom

Bedroom closet

Bedroom closet

 

Coat closet

Coat closet

Linen closet

Linen closet

Of course, you might know, they ran out of material for cleats for shelving. Bill spent Friday and Saturday cutting down extra trim pieces Jim and Joan had that they offered to us. Bill sanded off the stain, re-stained and polyed the pieces. Tim was supposed to come sometime this weekend to start on the master closet. He showed up sometime today and we didn’t know it until Bill discovered these cleats installed.

Where Bill's shoe racks will be

Where Bill’s shoe racks will be

My shoe racks and double-hanging rods will be

My shoe racks and double-hanging rods will be

Shelves will be and fold-up ironing board

Shelves will be and fold-up ironing board

Bill says he is going to trim the closet systems. And, he is adding extra support under every shelf. He finished one this weekend.

Bedroom closed trimmed out

Bedroom closet trimmed out

Bill had to buy more material for our fireplace mantle. He’s in the process of sanding the boards, then stain and then poly. Never ending! I think we finally came up with a mantel that I liked. 🙂

Of course, Bill continues to do PITA jobs. We’ve had squeaks in one of the front bedrooms for months. Bill had screwed all the subfloors after the framers nailed them down back in the fall. Last week Bill got under the crawl space to see if he could fix the problem. He put up blocking, put shims between the rafters and subfloor, and glued it all. Then he took out the screws that were in there and put in longer screws. He thinks he fixed it!!!!

Bill trying to fix squeaks in bedroom floor

Bill trying to fix squeaks in bedroom floor

And, we have AC now! The HVAC guys came Friday and flushed the geothermal loops with water and installed our temporary controller. Duct system isn’t finished yet, but air is running and it’s cool.

Temporary HVAC controller

Temporary HVAC controller

Our list is going down. Just some major things still need to be done before we could move in. Bill still doesn’t have his electric in the pole barn yet. Hoping for late June. But, we’ll see.

I’ll be glad when this weed filled pile of dirt is gone.

Big 'ol pile of weed covered dirt!

Big ‘ol pile of weed covered dirt!

 

Slow Progress is Better Than No Progress!

Perfection is attained by slow degrees; it requires the hand of time. ~Voltaire

The other day someone posted on a home-building forum the graphic below about the emotional roller-coaster of building a home. Click on the link to see the graphic.

The-Homeowners-Emotional-Roller-Coaster

Bill and I think our spike is still on the lower end with the painter since it seems to be taking a long time. But heck, in the last two weeks we did see some progress on the house.

The most dependable subcontractor has been the . . . cabinetmaker! Our cell voice service has been sporadic in the area, so Bill and I text most of the time.

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So, no subs showed up on Monday, February 24, except the cabinet-maker. 😦
Then, on Tuesday, February 25, we had a houseful of subs! The stone guys came and made our columns look better. Remember how I wanted the future columns to look?
Changing the columns

Changing the columns

Well, they did it!

Stone guys making the columns look better

Stone guys making the columns look better

Close-up of the new and improved columns

Close-up of the new and improved columns

As a reminder, that white trim part of the column is eventually going to be painted bronze.

The same day they delivered the ceramic tile for the bathrooms.

Marazzie ceramic tile for bathroom floors and master bath shower

Marazzi ceramic tile for bathroom floors and master bath shower

And a crew came to start working on the laundry room flooring. They had to install a sub-floor for the luxury vinyl tiles being installed in that room.

Sub-floor for the laundry room with samples of tile placement

Sub-floor for the laundry room with samples of tile placement

The painter and helper showed up on Tuesday, too. The painter said they probably would not be able to start spraying the poly that day since the guys doing the sub-floor were kind of in their way going back and forth between the laundry room and the garage. Sorry. 😳 So, the painters worked on staining other things – like windows and screens. Yes, believe it or not, we purchased the screens with the wood frames. We knew those were going to a pain to stain. But, unfortunately, Marvin Integrity doesn’t have a bronze frame and the other colors available clashed. So, I went with the wood ones. They came out nice!

Stained screens

Stained screens

Turns out that the painters did not come back the rest of that week. I guess they wanted the tile guys to get done so they could start spraying the finish. I don’t blame them.

However, before the painters took off for the rest of the week, Bill talked with Mark about staining and spraying poly on our cabinets! I guess Bill was satisfied with the job they had done with all the trim and doors. Mark gave Bill a price. Bill came up to the house after that and asked what I thought. Without batting an eyelid, I told him to have Mark do it! Then Bill said, “Okay, I’ll have him do it!” But, then he added, “There goes the saw I wanted to buy.” 😦 Bill’s big saw has been going out and he’s been holding his breath that it wouldn’t stop working before he got done with the cabinets. I looked at his sad eyes and said, “You can still buy the saw, for goodness sake!”

Knowing what Bill has had to go through these last two years making the cabinets and the stress to get them done in the conditions he’s working, in addition to working with all the subs and doing all the PITA jobs . . . Bill might have been better off stress-wise if we had just ordered the cabinets. Oh, don’t get me wrong . . . I LOVE the cabinets and they are as custom as could be. And, they are exactly what I wanted. And, I know they are going to be beautiful once they are done! They will be branded with Bill’s new stamp he just bought.

Bill's new branding stamp.

Bill’s new branding stamp.

If Bill were going to stain and spray poly on the cabinets he had planned to do it before the cabinets were assembled. However, the painter wants the cabinets assembled before he does them. So, Bill has been faithfully working every day making last-minute parts and sanding sanding sanding.

Top upper wall cabinets

Top upper wall cabinets

Cabinet doors and frames

Cabinet doors and frames

Sanding away

Sanding away

So while the painters took a break, the flooring guys worked their magic. The guys laying the laundry tile ran out of tile and they had to order another box. We are still waiting for them to finish up. They dropped off the DuraCeramic Dimensions tile this week and said they would be back to install it later.

Luxury vinyl tile

Luxury vinyl tile

Laundry room floor

Laundry room floor

Then another two guys came and started prepping to install the ceramic tile on the bathroom floors.

Underlayment in master bathroom

Underlayment in master bathroom

First tile piece in the hall bathroom

First tile piece in the hall bathroom

By Wednesday, Feb. 26, they had finished tiling both bathroom floors.

Hall bathroom floor

Hall bathroom floor

Master bathroom floor

Master bathroom floor

Matching up the tile floor with vanity sample, granite and the wall color.

Matching up the tile floor with vanity sample, granite and the wall color of the master bathroom.

Casey, the main tile guy, talked to us about how we wanted the shower and shower bench tiled and where we wanted the ceramic shower corner shelves placed and how many. Casey drew on the sheet rock. Not sure if you can see or not where we decided to put the decorative accent tiles along the wall. And where we wanted the shelves.

Shower wall

Shower wall

Diamond shaped decorative accent tile

Diamond shaped decorative accent tile

Here’s a sample of what the corner shelves will look like:

Corner shower shelves

Corner shower shelves

The drawing on the bench is not what we finally decided on . . . I guess I better make sure Casey remembers that before he starts tiling. 😯

Drawings on the shower bench

Drawings on the shower bench

Bill suggested putting the decorative diamond-shaped accent tiles in-between two rows of tile on the front of the shower bench. Casey said he could do that if they had enough accent tile left over.

Casey said he would be back Thursday night or Friday to grout the bathroom floors. Well, that didn’t happen! I guess there was a problem with I had not picked out a grout color yet. Oops! When Brian called from the flooring store, I told him to pick out a grout color that would match the tile. My only “want” was for it to be a darker color. I’ve had light-colored grout before and found it was hard to keep clean.

Sunday, March 2, brought yet another winter storm. This one involved freezing rain, ice, and snow. 😡 We didn’t get as much as they predicted but it was enough to cause traveling problems. Monday, March 3, school was cancelled for the 8th day this school year and Jill worked from home. Jim made it into work. And, Bill, the cabinetmaker, was the only contractor who showed up at the work site that day.

Here’s another text story. We kid about our mailbox. It’s temporary. But, it’s been down a lot this winter.

The saga of the cheap mailbox

The saga of the cheap mailbox

You would have thought duct tape would have kept it up, but Tuesday, March 4, it was down again. We kept wondering who was hitting it. As Bill was waiting to pull out of our driveway, the plow truck went by. The force of the snow hitting the mailbox, brought it down once again! Bill is sick of fixing this one. He’s waiting until the ground is softer so he can put up a permanent one.

Shayna, one of the painters, worked Tuesday through Friday this past week. She sprayed poly on all the stained pieces except the doors. Here is the huge spraying booth. It worked out well and contained the polyurethane within the booth area.

spraying booth

spraying booth

Shayna sanded everything and then started spraying a second coat on the trim pieces until she ran out of poly on Friday.

Trim pieces drying after poly spray

Trim pieces drying after poly spray

Stacks of trim pieces

Stacks of trim pieces drying in the garage, too

Wednesday, March 5, they delivered our hardwood floors. We asked that they be delivered as soon as they arrived as we wanted the floor to acclimate in the house before being installed. The flooring is engineered hickory lightly-handscraped 6″ width planks.

Stacks of hardwood flooring in front bedroom

Stacks of hardwood flooring in front bedroom

More stacks in the master bedroom

More stacks in the master bedroom

We went with the natural color hickory because everything else was dark. Plus, I had read where you should try and match the color of your hardwood floors with the color of the dirt around your house. 🙂 So, if you track in dirt from outside, it won’t show up at much as with darker floors. I’m such a matchy-matchy person, so it was out of my comfort zone to go with a light floor and dark trim. But, after looking on houzz.com I found I liked the look and so did Bill.

This was my inspiration photo from houzz.

Here is what our floors will look like next to our baseboards.

Hardwood floors next to floor boards

Hardwood floors next to baseboards

Friday, March 7, Casey the tile guy and his helper came back to start on the shower. They drilled the hole for the shower drain and installed the waterproof underlayment.

Looking into the shower after the waterproof underlayment was installed

Looking into the shower after the waterproof underlayment was installed

Maybe Bill talked with the Casey about me and colors because Casey said he needed me to pick out the grout color. 🙄 I even told Casey he could pick out a matching color that wasn’t light. He said he would leave me samples on the floor and would pull out the one he thought would match the best – but I still had to make the final decision. I decided to use Casey’s favorite as the grout color. Casey said they would be back on Monday to start tiling the shower. He said that will take a couple of days.

grout samples with Casey's favorite pulled out

grout samples with Casey’s favorite pulled out

Even though the progress seems slow, I guess we are making progress. I’m really looking forward to getting all the trim and doors finished. I’m looking forward to seeing the kitchen and laundry cabinets assembled. The painters will start staining the cabinets after they are done with all the trim and doors. They also have to paint the family room. Next on the list will be installing the hardwood floors. And then we can bring in the trim carpenter to start installing trim and cabinets. Time will tell whether we will be using the original trim carpenter we picked. He’s under a time crunch with the upcoming Parade of Homes.

I hope we have seen the last of the yucky winter weather. Time to March on!