try to work an hour or
two after getting home to get the electrical done a bit sooner so the focus
can go back to the kitchen. still need to wire up a lot of the fixtures,
but the switches are almost all done.
speaking of electrical.
i called the electrician who did our service and who i have worked for
in the past to touch bases with him. he called back later and said he might
have some work for me. this is a good thing money-wise. i also think that
career-wise being an electrician would be pretty fun. since it appears
as though i'll need some dental work done in the future it would also be
good to lay the ground work for getting full-time employment with benefits.
meryl has been working
on the underlayment for the hardwood in the kitchen. we're going with red
rosin paper, but the more i think about it, the more i think we should
have gone with kraft paper. ugh.
not sure why there's much
talk about sotomayor being confirmed. should be a no-brainer. she's a bit
quick to imprision people for my taste, but she'll do. the report i heard
said she consistently chose prison for defendants (both white and blue
collar) more than her peers. don't think that contributing to the police
state is really the way to go, but she seems solid otherwise.
not as productive today
as yesterday. had to go into work for about 4 hours, 5 hours lost when
you factor in drive time. painted the second coat in the kitchen in the
morning, though, so that's done. onto the flooring now. could do the overhead
cabinets if we felt like it.
all the electrical is roughed
in for the lights that i've been working on this week. hopefully that'll
be done by this time next week. drywall hopefully up in the laundry in
that time as well. we decided we're going to pay someone to do a bunch
of stucco work - mostly on the laundry room exterior, but also by the front
door to finally get that finished up. hope to get that done the first week
got a lot done on the house
today. on thursday i started working on running some electrical to a switch
near the sliding glass door in the laundry room for an exterior light that
we're going to have there. that ended up taking me down a slippery slope
into electrical hell. i started working on one circuit which led me taking
out all sorts of wires running all over the place. next thing you know
we don't have light in the laundry room or office. so now one light turns
into me finally tackling: hallway light, laundry lights, exterior light
by laundry room, office lights including getting the sconces to be on the
switch, front door exterior light, door bell, front foyer light. so thursday
i was planning things out and trying not to open up many walls in the process.
today i got almost all of that stuff roughed in. electrical is a challenge
in existing conditions because you have an ideal way of running a circuit,
but then there is the reality of the situation. do you really want to open
up the walls in the office so you can put in a new electrical box that
will fit more wires so you can run the next circuit with less wire and
less hassle? in this case i opted not to do that. i only opened up one
small section of wall in the laundry room and put in one new box by the
front door (but it won't require any patching because of my amazing cutting
job). electricians generally don't take this into account because they
generally don't bid in patching the drywall/plaster. when you're the electrician
and the drywall guy then you think about the process a bit more. of course
it does mean that a few of the lines aren't properly stapled within 8"
of the box, but i don't really see a way around that. so, by this time
next week we should have a door bell and lights in places that we didn't
before: front foyer, front exterior, hallway and the sconces in the office
will be operational.
also got a first coat of
paint on the kitchen walls. this is the second color we've tried, hopefully
top obama voting areas:
d.c. with something like 90% of the vote going to obama. hawaii (his birth
state) with over 70% and vermont with about 70%.
vermont is interesting
because it's so rural and has so many farmers, yet is the second biggest
state supporter of obama. seems like a contradiction to some. to me it's
the best of both worlds.
another early day at work
today to continue power washing the windows and patio. that patio is ridiculously
dirty and could probably use another washing to clean up more of the grout.
finished updating the vermont
also the pictures
should be working.
woke up before 6a today
to get to work by 630. had to pressure wash both the patios in anticipation
of some big event that they were having at the alumni house. tomorrow i
have to do the same to finish the last bit of the patio and go to work
on the windows. don't want to know how much water i used.
working on trip page for
the weekend in vermont.
unimpressed by the new
started painting tuesday,
but it turns out the color is too orange for our taste. got some more samples
and will try again when we get back.
this weekend is my birthday
celebration. meryl had been keeping it a secret, but she let it out in
comical fashion the other day. we're going to vermont to see the ben and
jerry's factory and have a good time in general.
a stucco guy was supposed
to come by today to look at putting new stucco on the laundry room exterior,
but he's 45 minutes late so i'm guessing he doesn't want the work.
you probably won't stay
tuned for the entire 20
minutes, but you should. great topic coupled with thoughtful and intelligent
real world insight.
would like to take a moment
to highlight the life of a great mind. charles
dalziel is known to only a few, but he saved thousands of lives and
is in just about everyone's home. he was a cal grad who also taught electrical
engineering there. later, he went on to invent the ground fault circuit
interrupter (gfci). it's the outlet with the little red/black buttons in
the middle that you find in wet areas such as the kitchen and bathroom.
most people won't ever have to thank him for his invention, but if you
ever drop a toaster in the bathtub and only get a brief shock, he's the
one to thank for your life. added some stuff to his wiki page the other
day because it's pretty sparse.
thursday was pretty productive.
meryl's dad came over and we installed the sliding glass door in the laundry
room. it weighs like 150lbs so getting it up into place was tough. the
frame needed some straightening once in place, but we got it done. took
about 2 hours to install and waterproof it. after that meryl and her dad
went to work on the bathroom demo. they took out the toilet and sink as
well as most of the lath/plaster and tile on the walls. i went at the cement
step by the kitchen entrance with the rotohammer. got it broken out and
chipped into small pieces so that we can dispose of the concrete over time.
meryl is away for the weekend
so i'm tackling the kitchen texture myself. still trying to fine tune the
curved archways so the pvc bullnose doesn't show. worked on that and primed
the small half of the kitchen as well as the ceiling in the main part of
the kitchen. we need to prime first because we're doing a knockdown texture
and the joint compound will dry at different rates depending upon whether
its on the drywall or the mud. pain in the ass. everything takes longer
than i hoped.
painting should be done
by end of day tuesday; at least that's the plan. texture should be done
this weekend. hope to finally patch the stucco this weekend as well.
went to a neighborhood
watch meeting a couple nights ago. rep from oakland pd was there giving
us tips on being safe. basically he said that being afraid and aware were
real important. not real helpful. mostly a waste of 90 minutes.
after the kitchen is done
i hope to catch up on all the little things, the half done projects that
have been sitting around waiting for a spare few hours to get finished
off. front door lights, door bell, stucco, painting stucco patches, and
all the rest.
hopefully the michael jackson
nostalgia doesn't last much longer.
this two week period will
always be remembered by me as the time i turned 30 and people told me i
was old, and the the time when a shit load of people died. palin committed
political suicide. fawcett, mj, mcnamara, mcnair, mcmahon, and malden.
hope to prep for texture
tomorrow. will also waterproof the opening for the sliding glass door in
the laundry room. hope to spray texture on friday, install door thursday.
saturday final coat of stucco beneath kitchen door. need to give that a
few weeks to fully cure before paint, unfortunately. should have gotten
to that last week. finding a good texture took a few tries, but i think
we found a good way of achieving what we're looking for. not sure it'll
come out perfect on the rounded corners and archways, but i'll do my best.
some big fireworks being
blown up in oakland today. i think oakland gets into it more than any place
i've been. it sorta fits into the lawlessness that many in this town seem
to embrace. saw a guy pissing on the street today.
meryl's dad came over thursday
to help with the sliding door in the back. before he came we started taking
out the drywall and we purchased the replacement door from hd. 6' slider
for under $300, thought that was a pretty good deal. we took out the old
door which proved a bit more difficult than anticipated. then meryl and
vince worked on swapping out the door and the door track so that it would
open the way we wanted it to (the default is right to left, and we wanted
it to slide left to right). while they did that i built a temporary wall
in front of the doorway so that we could demo the crappy framing job that
was there before and basically start from scratch. the laundry room was
once a covered patio and it's framed at 24" o.c. and in generally poor
condition. about the time they were finished i was finished so we worked
on taking down the old wall and then started framing in the new one. yesterday
and today i worked on that some more and finished it up. meryl worked on
the drywall in the kitchen; it's starting to look really good. just some
fine tuning left to be done before texture and paint.
this morning we went to
fenton's for my birthday breakfast. had planned on ihop because they were
reputed to give freebies on your b-day, but that turned out to be false.
after breakfast we came home and got to work on our respective projects.
the framing in the laundry is complete and looks real good. need to water
proof the opening and then it'll be ready for the door, which will go in
on thursday when vince is coming again to help. door is pretty heavy so
we definitely need another set of hands to get it done.
after a day's work we went
to fuddrucker's to claim my free birthday sundae and have dinner. then
we saw food inc. overall a good day. hopefully tomorrow will be even more
so far i've hauled in a
couple pairs of basketball shorts from meryl and a kick ass camera from
my grandma. will have photos of the house online within the week.
allergies don't seem to
quit. i'm thinking the high dust volume in the house is a contributor.
also the overrun weeds and grass probably aren't helping.