Monday, December 21, 2009


After four hours of shovelling, we finally escaped from the Cinderblock Chalet and drove over to see how our house looked in the snow. I think this is the first snow picture I've ever taken of our new house. It looks kind of pretty. All houses look pretty in the snow though, even the cinderblock chalet.

The world's tallest tree "stump" has got to go though. I snidely wagered way back in 2007 that it would probably take at least 6 months before the rest of the tree came down. The bark is falling off. Doug keeps saying he wants to carve it into a clarinet for our front lawn. So elegant. That's right up there with the saxophone lamp he was going to make. I'll be okay with him not getting around to that.

I think I'll focus on what we have actually gotten done during the past month or so, if I can remember, that is. We haven't been there for two days because of the snow and things like that tend to make me forget. I expect it will take a couple hours of shovelling to get back in there to on the house tomorrow.

We spent a lot of time this fall working on the outside of the house. It is totally finished except for two pieces of trim, the screens for the screened-in back porch, the lattice aprons under the front and back porches, and the flagstone veneer over the cinderblock on the bottom level. That stuff can wait since our inspection does not require those things - except for the trim which I'm sure will be much more fun to install in January.

This is our unscreened-in back porch

Inside, Doug put in all the baseboards in the bathrooms so that the plumber can come in and finish his work. We finally installed the brown fan in the upstairs front room. We did several top coats of a super durable finish called Bona Traffic on our kitchen floor so that the refrigerator and dishwasher can be moved back in and hooked up. Doug finally put in all of the toe kicks for the kitchen cabinets that we installed last February. He won't do the moulding at the top of the cabinets until after the inspection at the end of January he said, which is disappointing, but apparently necessary. The kitchen floor looks great. It has a satin finish now. All of the exterior doors now have beautiful door handles and locks. I painted a closet. I'm patiently waiting for more stuff to paint.

In the hopefully near future we'll be putting up the drywall in the basement. I don't think this will be nearly as laborious as it was this time last year doing all of the bathrooms and the laundry room upstairs. We have ten foot ceilings on the top floor and that was a lot of extra work. The basement should be easier and it's about a third as many walls to cover. I'm looking forward to getting that finished because then we can get busy with the finish carpentry. Oh, and painting and staining the stairs.

We still have to get the HVAC guy to come back and put in our heat pump. Unfortunately, due to all of the delays, the air handler up in the attic is designed for R22 refrigerant but now they only make heat pumps that use R410 refrigerant, so we are going to have to get some kind of conversion done to our air handler to make it compatible with the heat pump, since the R22 compatible heat pump didn't get purchased in time. Delays cause problems, that's all there is to it.

We're pretty much ready for the plumber to come back and finish his work, unless there are additional details that I'm not aware of.

We haven't seen the electrician in a while. I don't expect he'll be back until we've finished drywalling the basement although it would be really nice to get the floor heat hooked up sooner rather than later. The two space heaters do a pretty good job of heating our super-insulated house, but they aren't that efficient and it would be more comfortable with the floor heat. Or the regular heat.

That's all I can think of for now. Wish us luck.


Bowie Mike said...

Metaphorically, this reminds me of coming to the end of a long airplane flight. At this point, you've been advised that the flight attendants will be coming by, and you've got to turn off your electronics. Unfortunately, this can psychologically be the longest part of the ride, and I don't know about you, but I generally get kind of anxious at this time.

Speaking of metaphors, I have a lot of tree "stumps" too, but not many that can be converted into clarinets. When we visit my parents' house, my wife sees all of my father's unfinished projects, and she says, "ahhh, so this is what I have to look forward to!"

Cyndy said...

That is a great metaphor, except that I actually like riding on airplanes and really miss it. I'm hoping this last part will fly by, especially if I keep my nose buried in my book, or in wallboard and sawdust as the case may be.

And I don't know you, but I would say that whether we like it or not, as we get older many of us tend to become more and more like one parent or the other, sometimes in spite of our best efforts. I've seen it happen. It's okay as long as there's some flexibility somewhere.