9:49 p.m. — Sunday, October 16,
Don't let our little blogation fool you; we've made some excellent progress these last few months! We just weren't around to tell you about it.
You can take a look at our to-do list if you'd like to see for yourself. There are as many items crossed off as pending now, which is a beautiful sight to behold.
So what's the major project we've completed within the last few months...? Why, installing the kitchen cabinets, of course!
Now that the island is installed, we can officially say that we are done with the kitchen cabinets as well as the cabinet trim. All we have left to do as far as the cabinets are concerned is add the kickplates once the flooring is done. (There's also the countertops to install, but that's a whole 'nother beast in its own category.)
We've changed our minds about the kitchen floor. We've always said we would put linoleum flooring in the kitchen for three reasons:
But miracle of miracles, we've discovered linoleum is NOT cheaper than tile. When you consider that we have our very own semi-professional tile installer in the family who works for food and NOT outrageous Home Depot linoleum installation pay, tile was a no-brainer.
And if you hook us up to the polygraph, you'll discover that truth be told we actually like tile better. Forget those lame reasons above. We just talked ourselves into linoleum when we thought it was cheaper. Funny how the mind works.
Here are three tiles up for consideration:
And what is THAT?! There appears to be a kitty-shaped spot on one of the 16" tiles! How did that get there...? Oh well, too late to return it, I suppose. We might as well keep it.
More on that subject another time ;)
So anyway, back to tile. Be on the lookout for a follow-up post about
how the grout in the half bath ended up, how the new tile floor in the
master bath looks, and what tile we pick for the kitchen floor and master
bath shower. I'm looking forward to seeing what tile we pick, too.
7:34 p.m. — Monday, October 25,
It came to my attention the other night when Ryan was browsing through this site that I never posted photos of his finished wood floors. So without further ado, here are some photos of the newly-finished wood floor in our living room:
And here are some close-ups of that beautiful wood:
1:20 p.m. — Tuesday, October 26,
Some folks have been wondering what ever happened with our grout dilemma in the 1/2 bath. I had been saying how the grout ended up much lighter than it was supposed to be. This photo shows the tiled floor mid-cleaning. The back half shows how dark the grout was SUPPOSED to be, and the front half shows how it actually dried...too light.
Against popular opinion, I ended up springing for the Aqua Mix grout colorant online. I couldn't give up without trying! First, I tested the colorant on an extra piece of tile, just to make sure I would be able to completely remove any excess off the face of the tile after letting is sit for a few minutes. It came off great.
Next, I tested it on a small portion of grout on the bathroom floor under where the toilet would go, as Roland suggested, and it went on just fine and seemed like everything was going to work correctly. But there was just one problem:
The cinnamon stain was the WRONG COLOR. The problem could be blamed on the color not being accurately represented online, which is to be expected, or on me not thinking things through correctly (i.e. listening to bad advice). Either way, I was not about to order ANOTHER bottle of grout colorant, especially with Ryan chomping at the bit to get the bathroom done. So, after all that worry and effort, we decided at last that the grout was just going to remain as it was.
Now Ryan could get to work.
First, he put up the beadboard, the baseboards, the cove molding in the corners, and the chair rail. We painted it all a crisp white to match our trim throughout. Then, it was time to paint the top half of the walls. Ryan had been wanting some kind of wine or burgundy color, so we went to Home Depot and picked out some swatches. Ryan was really leaning towards one particular color with the word wine in the title. (Sorry—I don't remember exactly what it was!)
During the paint-picking, I wandered off to the garden section—which happens quite frequently—and found a beautiful hibiscus on sale that I had been eyeing for a while. When I brought it back to the cart, Ryan said he wanted a color just like my hibiscus. So we put the petal under the Behr scanner and after the scanner took three samples of the leaf color, it told us the paint sample we had picked was the closest match to the leaf! So Ryan was pretty consistent.
We bought a quart, figuring the top half of the 5'x5' room was pretty small, why spring for a whole gallon? But 4 coats later (!), we had purchased not only another quart, but ALSO a gallon! We've used Behr paint for our whole house and have been pretty happy with its coverage-ability and quality thus far, but we could tell during the first coat that we would have trouble with this particular color. Of course we had no idea we would STILL see streaks after four coats.
The red room upstairs was previously our darkest room, and that only took two coats of paint. It might need one more some day, but it's completely liveable as it is. Someone told me recently that lighter colors use a white base, while darker colors use a transparent base—that's why they take more coats to cover. Good to know.
So after that painting debacle, Ryan got to putting in the toilet and sink. This of course involved first removing the pedestal sink from its temporary home in the upstairs bathroom.
This was Ryan's first toilet installation, and I think he quite enjoyed figuring out how the compression fittings worked. He was happy to hear there was no soldering involved (pronounced sole-der-ing, if you didn't know), after a phone call to Roland.*
Here's an after photo:
Sorry the picture's a little mushed. It's a really small space and I couldn't get far enough away for a better picture. There are two lights like the one above, one on either side of the mirror that will go above the sink. The mirror, like the TP holder and the towel rod, have yet to be hung. We like how the base of the pedestal matches our baseboards.
* Roland, by the way, has moved to CALIFORNIA a.k.a. "Best Place
in the World" with wife and son, so Ryan has had to pick up the
plumbing slack in his absense. Though we hear they're coming to visit
for Thanksgiving and Ryan was talking about putting him to work while
he's here ;) JUST KIDDING, Anna! Ryan has only had to scream "Turn
off the water! Turn off the water!" once since you guys moved...hehe.
3:05 p.m. — Monday, October 31,
Today is our two-year house anniversary. Meaning exactly two years ago today, Halloween 2003, we bought our little ranch.
We spent the day wondering whether or not the previous owner's belongings would finally make it out of the house, and we spent the evening finally unpacking.
Then on this day last year, 2004, construction had just started and we were gleefully ripping shingles off the front of the house, only to reveal a swarm of carpenter ants.
The little trick-or-treaters thought the bugs were cool, but us...? Not as much.
And the house looked like this:
Now one year later, Halloween, 2005, the house looks like this:
And what will we be doing today? Well, I'll let you guess: It involves a bowl, chocolate, little kids, cute costumes, and NO WORK on the house. I think we've earned it ;)