On the Porch

Mike asked me recently what I wanted this farmer's porch to look like. And I found I couldn't give him a very descriptive answer. In fact, he had no clue what I was talking about. So I dug up this picture on the net:
Believe it or not, this house is actually in my town. Down by the library, the picture-taker told me. (Picture-taker... yeah, how about photographer, jess?) I wish I had a current pic of my actual house to compare it to.... then again, it would put my house to shame.

THIS is pretty damn near to what I want ours to look like. The white with green, the farmer's porch, the super-nice grass... *sigh*

But you can see what I was trying to explain to Mike on the porch - he said, "What do you want it to look like?" and I said, "Like a fence! You know, with posts..." And he said, "Oh, columns?" So, you can see how circularly confusing that conversation was.

But this is a great pic, because this house is the same exact style as ours, except for the mudroom jutting out the right hand side... that will be tough with the porch roof line.

Ahhh, Friday at Long Last

I've never been so happy to be on the edge of a weekend! February is almost over and I'm feeling fine. Over the past week, I've gotten so much relieving news too. No more worries for me! Well... at least not as many.

We did our taxes last night - and now comes time for the all important tax-return decision. If you remember, last year's returns purchased all the hardwood for the upstairs. I'm wondering if we should continue this year and purchase all the hardwood for the downstairs...

Or, should we save it for the construction of the farmer's porch.

I'm really on the fence about this one. Getting the hardwood for the downstairs would bring the house-interior-doneness level up to over 95%. As in the upstairs, we'd have to fix the downstairs drywall cracks, install subfloor and hardwood, and then finish the baseboard and other trim. And although that's a lot of work - it's the last hoorrah. At that point, the downstairs would be officially nearly done. We'd just have to do our stair railing and a couple other little things and that would be it. An amazing concept....

But we've been really gearing up for the farmer's porch, what with the installation of the french doors and permit preparation. Putting on the farmer's porch would be a huge improvement for the house's exterior. At the same time, we'd replace the disgusting old siding on the front of the house with nice clapboards - white with green shutters, window boxes, and of course the beautiful porch. It would be picture perfect.... at least from the front.

I want both equally as much! Ok housebloggers, let's take a vote. What would you do if you were me? Interior doneness or exterior progress?

This Room's Name Is Mud

Just when I was riding high on the progress of the mudroom, (soon to be dining room by the way) an obstacle popped out and smacked me in the butt. Upon said smack, I fell down and a fight ensued, causing major suable damages to myself and the obstacle in question.

Ok, so that's a gross exaggeration of a weird metaphor. Let's back this truck up.

On Sunday, Mike was with our carpenter friend and DIY answer man, TJ. And of course, Mike showed off the mudroom floor and talked with him about our plans for the room's floor. (Tile by the door and in the laundry closet, and the remainder of our 3/8" hardwood for the rest.)

But TJ pointed out that since this was the house's main entry point and an extreme high traffic, high dirt, high muddy boots stomping all over the place room - the 3/8" hardwood would quickly wear down. And, being 3/8 and not 3/4 - you can only refinish it a couple times before completely refinishing it down to nothing. He suggested that we tile the entire room.

He's right. He's 100% right. But I have several problems with tiling the entire room.

1. From a design/personal opinion standpoint - I think tile is too cold and unloving for a dining room.
2. We don't have enough leftover kitchen tile to do the entire mudroom, and I don't want to have to buy new tile.
3. The kitchen tile design, although fine for beneath the french door and laundry closet, does not match the color scheme of the room and I'd have to re-think all that.
4. We currently have plenty of leftover 3/8" hardwood from the upstairs to do the mudroom. BUT, that's the only room we could use 3/8 in. The rest of the house we need to do in the more supportive 3/4. So... we'd be left with a whole bunch of 3/8 that we could never ever use anywhere else. (Can you say, a lot of money just sitting around?!)
5. I cannot afford to purchase 3/4 right now. If I was to purchase it, I would want to purchase for the entire amount I need for the entire downstairs anyway.
6. For all those above reasons - this delays the completion of the room.

So Mike and I talked about it back and forth. We went through all the options. We finally decided to just put down the 3/8 with a couple of rows of tile. I will purchase an area rug to help cut down on damage to the floor, and if we indeed need to replace it 5 years down the line, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it.

It's just the most cost effective, materials effective, time effective solution. And I know it's probably not the best solution - but we're going to just go with it.


Alright - I know you've all been wondering how the whole plywood ordeal turned out.

We returned to the DeepHo Friday night with our electro-measuring thingie. Sure enough, the plywood measured 0.46... something. (Or, 15/32.)

I said to Mike, "Well, how is that going to work with the piece we have currently that measures 0.4?!"

He replied, "Oh, that measured the same... 0.4-something."

Ok, he forgot to mention the dot dot dot after the 0.4 when he told me the measurement the other day. So the piece we had in was in fact 15/32.

So we purchased all we needed, used our coupon. 15/32 seems to be the standard "actual" width of 1/2" plywood. BUT that does not excuse the Home Depot from labeling it in such a manner, thus confusing those of us (like myself) who are novice DIY - er's. LABEL IT 1/2" OR DO NOT LABEL IT AT ALL!

Over the weekend, I was working like a crazy gal - 14 hour days all weekend - the whole bit. While I was working, I asked Mike to go on Saturday and see if our good friend Hal still had his extra Anderson window and if we could get it/buy it.

But when I got home Saturday night (at about 10pm mind you) I was shocked and elated to discover that he had installed all the plywood in the mudroom! He had even moved our stackable washer/dryer all by himself. It was all done and it looked awesome!

He hadn't gone to see about the window, but I didn't care - this was great! Another big step in finishing the mudroom! And it made my tough weekend just that much easier!

It's Only A Little Bit Off....

Undo shenanigans. That's what we're dealing with here. UNDO shenanigans.

Let's back up a few months into last summer, I believe it was. Mike and I purchased what we thought was a 1/2" sheet of plywood from the DeepHo, brought it home, measured and cut it to our needs, plopped it in place, and discovered that it was not 1/2" plywood.

It was, in fact, we discovered after making some measurements and checking the markings on the plywood sheet itself - 15/32."

Now, you may think that 15/32 is not so far off from 1/2, (which would be 15/30) but when you're working on an underlayment for a floor and you have even the most minuscule difference, it makes a BIG difference.

So we got pissed and couldn't use the piece. But, we figured that it was just a flook. We picked plywood from the wrong DeepHo bin - or somehow it had been mislabeled, or that piece had been put back incorrectly, something like that.

Fast forward to last night. I had a coupon for the DeepHo, so we figured we'd head down and purchase the rest of the plywood for the mudroom floor. And low and behold the plywood was labeled as such: "15/32 or 1/2"

Or. What is the word "or" doing in that sentence? It should not be "or" and moreover, it should not be "15/32" It should be 1/2. But apart from that, "or" in there begs the question: WHICH IS IT?

In an industry where fractions of an inch can make your life and the life of your future flooring a living hell - why the crap would they do that? Even a big box store like Home Depot should know that they're just going to piss people off with undo shenanigans like that.

And so we're standing there staring at it.

We have in the mudroom already one sheet of 1/2" plywood. And now we're second guessing that piece. Is it really 1/2" or is it 15/32? Because if you had all of one or the other, life would be grand. But you can't have both.

And then we're thinking, well, is this Home Depot bin full of 15/32 AND 1/2? Are we playing plywood Russian roulette?! What are they doing to us?

So of course, with all these doubts in our minds, we left without buying anything - much to our aggravation. Upon returning home and measuring our already installed piece of plywood - it measured 0.4" and 15/32 works out to 0.46875."

And now we're even more confused on what to do. Another strike against big box stores. But what am I supposed to do? I shop there because I can use my Home Depot card. I suppose I should just get a regular credit card and shop elseware... but then there's the fact that Home Depot is open later hours (because everyone in the known world works 9-5) and all that. Plus the coupon!

Watch your local DeepHo stores! "OR" is on the loose! Along with a buncha fractions that have no place in standard construction.

Time, Mike, and a Dream about a Toilet

Yes, I had a dream about a toilet - weird huh? I haven't even been thinking about it lately either. It's been a good toilet. Anyway, I knew I had to address that first because that's why you clicked onto this post. I dreampt that we were getting a new toilet as a temporary solution. I don't remember much else except images of shopping for a toilet. Maybe it means something... or maybe I'm just bathroom obsessed.

Time has been killing me. I've been doing some traveling for work and it's been just exhausting. I slept 24 hours between Saturday night and now. And Sunday I spent the entire day recovering from the previous week on the couch. Next weekend will be work crazy too - no rest for the weary.

While I was away, Mike did a lot of work in the back back yard. He pulled out a lot of stumps and loaded up the truck 3 times with dump runs of stumps. (Great band name: Dump Runs of Stumps.) I haven't even been back to look at the yard, but I'm sure with that much stumpage gone, it looks great.

Mike was also going to put in the new basement door for me on Saturday night, but his back was killing him from the stumps. He did manage to cut the drywall in prep for the door though. The current door to the basement is an old 24" bi-fold closet door that we shortened to fit. But since it wasn't a solid wood door, shortening it basically ruined it. I wouldn't recommend it. It just doesn't fit in the tracks like it should and falls out every time you try to open it. The new door is also 24", but it's solid and we decided that rather than cut the door, we'd just add height to the doorway.

(This original doorway was for a tiny closet under the upstairs stairs, and a short one at that.)

So hopefully we can get that accomplished this week if I'm not too pooped. AND the new french doors, which are still not screwed in completely. I need to push to get that room done. I need to push myself too.