Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Making Way For a Door

When Mom and Dad showed up Friday, we decided that the new patio door would be the project for the weekend.  Mom started us off by opening up the wall so we would know exactly what we were dealing with.

This is what we found.  We already knew about the electrical wire.  We would have to reroute it over the doorway and possibly move the box a bit further down.  What we didn't bargain for is hiding down there next to the bottom of the middle stud - an anchor bolt.  That's right where the door was going to go.  We couldn't just remove it because I like the idea of my house staying attached to the foundation.  We would have to figure out a way to replace it, but concrete is not the most friendly of materials to work with.

That afternoon, Dad drilled the holes through the studs and header for the wire rerouting.  Drilling through the header is slow work.  I got doorknobs attached to most of the interior doors.

Saturday dawned and we worked on a solution to our anchor bolt problem.  We thought about renting a ram set gun the drive nails through the sillplate and into the concrete.  Turned out to be a bit too expensive to rent. We ended up going to the local hardware store and discussing the problem with a helpful clerk there.  He hooked us up with these bolts pretty much made for that purpose.  You drill a hold in the concrete, drop in the bolt, and then hammer the top.  When you hammer, it spreads out these clawlike things at the bottom to grip in the concrete.

That afternoon, Dad spent most of his time drilling two holes in the concrete - one on either side of the new door.

He's great.  I know he wore himself out doing so.  I love you!

I painted the door frame of the guest room.

Mom did some touch up painting in various places and filled holes in moulding and doors with joint compound.  Eventually, the concrete decided that Dad could have his holes.  He then pounded the bolts into place.

After that, Dad and I worked on rerouting the wiring over the doorway.  Mom was working on her own electrical project in the kitchen.  Since we'll be putting tile on the walls, the two electric boxes there need to extend out a bit so they won't be recessed behind the tiles.  So was only relatively successful in that venture.  The boxed were not being very friendly with her.  Dad and I had more success with our rerouting, as you can see (if you look carefully).

We were finally ready to take out the window and replace it with the door on Sunday.  Dad was hoping we would have gotten it done on Saturday, but that anchor bolt really messed things up.  First thing, Dad and I removed the window from the wall.  After that, Dad cut the stucco from the window opening to the ground.

You can see the plastic we put up to keep most of the masonry dust out of the house.  After that, Dad cut out the remaining boards.  

The double studs on the left were kept.  Two more studs had to be added to the right so the frame of the door would be well supported.  Dad added those as well.  While he was doing those jobs that didn't need any help, I put up the ceiling trim in the master bedroom.  Mom was generally spending the day cleaning and fixing outlets and switches.  Finally, we laid out the door and were ready to put it in place.

I stayed on the inside and directed where to move the door while Mom and Dad lifted it up.  Getting a door just right is a pain.  After it was up, we had to make sure it was in a good location front to back so that the frame would line up with the sheetrock, which wasn't there yet.  Once that was good, we had to make sure it was plumb in every direction.  All of this took a lot of wiggling and back and forth.  Once one side was good, fixing the other often meant readjusting the first.  It took a bit of time, but we eventually got it.  I was then able to add the doorknob and lock.

While I did that, Dad filled in the hole to the right of the door with a board.  The original window was wider than the door.  Then, I had to fill in the screw holes on the back of the door with little plastic plugs.  Dad cut off the shims.  Finally, the door was done.  Now we just need to add the insulation, sheetrock, texture, and paint.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

A Weekend Without Mom & Dad

Mom and Dad were in So Cal for my uncle's 60th birthday.  I still managed to get some things done, but not nearly as much as when there's three of us.

Friday:  pulled quite a bit of weeds from the front yard.  Soon it'll just be maintenance pulling.  I also painted the backs of the doors for the two bedrooms, study, and bathroom.  I also painted the door frame for the study.

Saturday:  no actual work.  I went thrifting, hoping to find the perfect chair for the reading corner I'm going to create in the study.  No luck, but I came close.  Found a great one, but it was only being sold as a set for to much money.

Sunday:  went to Meeting. Yay!  In the afternoon, I painted the entire hall closet door and the door frame for the master bedroom.  Also, pulled more weeds out front.

So, I still got things accomplished, but a heck of a lot more gets done when Mom & Dad are here, too.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Only Two Days of Work This Weekend

We worked only Friday & Saturday this weekend.  Sunday we celebrated Father's Day early as Mom and Dad will be out of town next weekend.

Floorman came out Friday morning and measured the three rooms for carpet.  It should be getting installed about the 24th - it's got to be made then shipped.

Friday, the living room window was replaced.  Saturday, Mom flashed it.  Dad put chicken wire around both the front windows so he can stucco them later.  That took up just about most of the day.  Cutting and stuffing it around the window is a slow, slow process.  Window sills around both windows have been installed and need to be joint compounded and painted.

I got some weeding in the front done.  Also, some trim and cabinet door painted.  Mom added some sheetrock to the short parts of the bedrooms.  In some places, the sheetrock doesn't come down all the way and would leave a gap between the wall and carpet.  Since I'm not planning on putting baseboard in them, I definitely want that gap gone.  I taped and Mom compounded the additions.

We're getting there.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Rain Slowing Us Down

Friday morning we switched out my dining room window.  It didn't take long to pull out the old one.  Putting the new one in was pretty quick as well since we could use the frame that was already there.  After lunch, rain was threatening, so we didn't do the living room one since it's exposed.  The dining room window is under an overhang, so it's protected.  Instead of getting that one in a precarious, leaky situation, I put the flashing around the window.  Stucco will come at some point in the future.  Mom and Dad worked on repairing some door moulding.

Saturday morning we went to a carpet store to see if they had something I liked at a reasonable price.  They did!    Floorman is coming out on Friday to measure.  That afternoon Mom and I worked on putting some insulation in the dining room wall.  When the window was out, Dad could see that there was none there.  Mom cut an opening just under the window wide enough for me to wiggle the insulation through.

Dad worked on door moulding and transition strips between the hall and bedrooms.

Sunday, Dad finished installing door moulding and put up the floor moulding in the hall.  That had been on hold until the door moulding was done.  I got the ceiling trim for the master bedroom denailed, cleaned up, and painted.  Mom patched up the hole from Saturday under the window.

We're getting there on the house.  There should be an open house sometime this summer.  Here's the still to do list (created Sunday afternoon):
  • Ceiling trim: master, guest, & bedroom               
  • finish painting hallway doors (including linen closet)
  • apply socket & switch plates
  • kitchen tile
  • living room window
  • patio door
  • texture & paint wall around dining room & patio door
  • kitchen trim
  • exterior paint
  • roof
  • blinds
  • door knobs
  • shower
  • door jambs
  • electric panel
  • closet doors