Saturday, March 15, 2014


You know those times when you accidentally wake up too early and you find your self in that predicament of trying to decide what to do with your surprise extra time... make cookies or blog post? Well, I'm not one for decisions or compromise, so here's my plan: crappy blog post and drop cookies (I don't even have a shamrock cookie cutter so the roll-out cookies I was dreaming up would've involved some serious leg work including metalworking). Look alive people, we gotta make this quick!

So this one is about re-tiling the guest bathroom. We had a couple tiles left over from the addition so Jaydee decided that, in order to practice his tiling skills, he should start by re-doing the floor in the little bathroom rather than diving right into the kitchen/dining area/laundry room/ half-bath project. I suppose I can understand. And, while the guest bathroom wasn't terrible looking, it was in need of a bit-o-do-up.

Don't worry, we kept the aqua counter tops.

Just kidding.  This isn't our bathroom. This bathroom is gross. Our problems were limited to crappy linoleum floor, a vanity that should probably be replaced, a real ugly shower insert and a flaky blogger who forgot to take before pictures. 

The first step to the bathroom project was tearing out the old floor. Jaydee pulled out the vanity, toilet, linoleum and old backer board all by his lonesome.

It was very impressive and by the end of it, Jaydee looked like he was about to die. I remember catching that moment on camera - the picture was priceless... however, Jaydee recently "re-organized" our picture files and somehow that gem disappeared. No worries though, I recreated here.  I found it! But just for giggles let's compare:

I see now that I exaggerated the length of his hair.  

While Jaydee recovered me and the dogs played in the empty bathroom. 

Next came some very tedious leveling then lots of nail gunning then tile. To lay the tile we had to use mortar of course and Jaydee and I have taken to referring to the substance as MORDOR!

Which, unfortunately,  is very scary to Bruce.

When we were done torturing the animal, Jaydee began the cutting and sticking. His tile saw skillz are getting serious.

Crossed leg, relaxed pose - he was real proud of himself.

Jaydee finished the tiling, added grout, I painted, spent way too long shopping amazon for hooks and such, Jaydee installed, trent inspected. We was done.

Guess if there's still time to make cookies?

Nope. Instead I used all my time drawing pictures of my husband, stopping every few lines to giggle at my handy work. Uh huh. Yeah. So no cookies today.

... did I have time? HA! There's always time for cookies. 

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The Big Cover Up

As I mentioned in my post from six months ago, (ok not quite six months but let's be honest, there's no amount of prune juice that could make my blogging regular so I'm going to make sure to keep expectations low) one of the den-doer-upper projects was covering that big ugly painted brick wall in our living room.

Remember this guy? Yep. It had to go. Jaydee and I debated what to do with this beast of a room separator since day one at 16202. The first thought was to get the paint off somehow to return to the wall to it's glory days of natural brick. So we tried sandblasting. Then chemical stripping. Then scraping. Then a seance. Alas the gray was not budging. So we had to change course. We decided to do what we usually do when we run into a problem or a mess thats just too big of a pain in the old arse to fix - we covered it up!

With what you ask? Well I will tell you. With something called ledger board. Jaydee and I scoured Houzz and Google images until we found what we were looking for and then proceeded to call around to various rock shops to inquire about the goods.

"Hiiiiiiiii yeah, we're interested in purchasing skinny rock that goes up the wall. Yeahhhhhhhh something that's like skinny and kinda thin. Uh huh. Yeah. Oh you don't have skinny rocks? Ooooh ok. Ok. Ok great. Thanks for your time"

Try again

"Um yes hi. I'd like to purchase rock to cover a fire place. Yeah like rock on a board. You have rock on a board? Oh ok. Right. Great. Ok. Thanks for your time."

Until finally we called a crazy lady. She was REAL crazy but also really helpful and when she heard our stumbling speech about 3D stone wall paper for covering brick she immediately knew what we were talking about. That's when we learned that new fancy term Ledger Board.  Next we went to visit the crazy lady at her rock shop and thats when we learned that she was crazy. I wouldn't be exaggerating if I said she had 28 grey hound pictures in her office AND she was wearing a grey hound jogging suit. Yep. A grey hound jogging suit. We were in her office approximately 12 minutes before she got teary eyed and told us about Darla, the grey hound that was immortalized by a 4 ft by 4ft oil painting on her wall, and how she was so fast she ran full speed into a fence and killed herself while playing one day. But I digress. We got the ledger board - moving on.

We took advantage of the two able bodies and contractor dad who visited us over Christmas and guilted them into helping with a tasty deep-fried turkey and two pies. Here's how the process went.

Tape off the rest of the house with pink tar paper while little able body played with a helicopter.
Then cut.




Break for video games.

Break for video games.


Calk (hee hee hee).
And viola!

I know what you're thinking.

Don't worry. Tile is coming....

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Back in Da Saddle


Well, now that we're done getting married and robbed, overcame Trent's drug problem, we got honeymooned then made it through the holidays, I do suppose it's time to end the home-improvement hiatus and carve a little quality time for the den.

I can't pretend I'm the one who reinvigorated the movement. About a month a ago, dear husband got it in his head that he needs to build one of these. Nope, not kidding. He calls it a quadrahopper or something like that and he's dead set on it. If you all remember, the last time Jaydee endeavored such a project, it took him the better part of two years to build it and then a solid six months of emotional recovery after it's first flight led to a fatal crash.  So, as you can probably imagine, if Jaydee gets started on the quadcopter, we can kiss those den do-up dreams goodbye for at least three years. I knew I had to act fast and get us going on the house projects before he had time to take the carbon fiber out of storage or whatnot.

So I did what any determined, yet slightly incapably and quite constructionally challenged, girl would do - I started 8 different projects and left the pieces strewn about Jaydee's shop.

You see what I did there? No room for quadcopter and the pain of watching me try and do these things on my own would drive any man to help.

Would that I could have a quadcopter....
As luck would have it, this little stunt was paired with an impromptu visit by Jaydee's contractor-dad and his two able bodied little brothers. Win.

Jaydee's family shares his copter fascination.

Now, we don't take pride in the fact that we exploit our family members for their vocational skills (it's not our fault we've got familial ties with some extraordinarily helpful people). However, we got some fantastic advice and a solid does of kick-in-the-pants to get us moving. Not to mention consulting services and a small work force for operation: hide the ugly painted brick. More on this later.

And so my friends,  with that, I'd like to extend a warm "welcome back" to me and the pack.  We know... you missed us a lot.