Monday, May 28, 2007


Killer Drywall...

Renovating a house is a con game...confidence, that is. Projects that once seemed daunting and dangerous -- like attacking my windows and doors with a sander -- now appear simple and boring. Of course, then comes along another project that really tests your confidence and pushes out the comfort frontier farther.

Some of you may remember my plans to install a low-voltage track lighting system. I even went out and bought a remote transformer so I wouldn't have any ugly boxes on the ceiling. Heretofore I have done nothing on that front...largely because I was afraid of the little problem of getting electricity to the spot in the ceiling where I wanted the track. Mind you....I'm not afraid of the wiring (which is really simple) but of getting the wire to the light -- and the drywall work required. I finally bought the drywall saw and just went at it. Here's a little photo history:

I'm not done. I actually want to leave the last section out until I get the track installed so I can properly test it. Also, I took the above photos when I was just testing it. Update: Before sealing up the final panel in the ceiling the splice was put into a proper junction box. I'm still getting the hang of the drywall patching thing. I bought some 1x boards to screw into the holes so I'd have something to attach the drywall pieces to when I reinstalled them. As you can see...I'm not afraid of spackle. Luckily, this is in a spot in the ceiling where you really can't see screw-ups. I just need to sand, prime, and paint.

I also decided to refinish the interior of the doorset in the living room. One coat of primer, two coats of decorator white:
I know I'm always harping on the little things making the difference. Well this time I've got proof. If you're an avid reader, you'll remember me talking about completely rebuilding the edge between the ceiling and the ridge beam. I finally got around to repainting the ridge beam.

Sunday, May 27, 2007


Vote for Me!

I've entered my blog in the blog contest. This is actually a pretty cool site (that includes some unique things like a cost estimator) for those into remodeling, rehabbing, and restovating. Anyhow, I'd appreciate all the votes I can get:

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


Big Weekend

Gems of wisdom sometime come from the strangest of places. I think over the last few months I've struggled a bit with focus, completing little projects here and there but not really making progress. Out of the blue, a friend of mine (who has never owned a home) casually mentions, "Why don't you just do one room at a time?"

So simple! So this weekend I spent the entire time working on living room projects. I spend a lot of time in there; it's seen frequently by guests; I've already put in a lot of hard work. So here's a summary of projects completed:

No, not like a cake. Since the tv purchase usurped my frontdoor budget, I've realized I might need to spend a little more time with "the Frenchies" than I had hoped or originally planned. It's always bugged me that my living room feels like a fish bowl with the clear glass. So I decided to frost the glass myself:

...then you notice the horrible plastic trim around the door. I've learned that 90% of the time, trim is contractor code for "covered up screw up." This fell under the 90%:
Now that I had broken the plastic I had to fix it properly, or at least as properly as I know how. And in the middle of just about every project there comes a moment where you think, sometimes out loud, "what have I done?" Here's mine (no, it's not cake frosting):But it all worked out well:There's just one coat of primer. Here you can also see the splotchy nature of the window frosting. I'm not 100% happy with it, so I may just buy another can of spray-frost and go over it again.

Obviously I needed to paint some of the beams and posts around the door. Most of the beams and posts in my house were done in glossy off-white. I never liked it but I didn't realize how bad it looked until I repainted a section in the same crisp flat white enamel as the ceilings, which, btw, are now also complete in the living room. Here are some final living rooms pics:
And the other end:

Wednesday, May 02, 2007


I'm A Lucky Duck!

Admit it, sometimes it's a bit infuriating to see someone blindly get lucky...just being in the right place at the right time. That pretty much describes my entire sentiment while watching the movie, Forrest Gump. Digression aside, for once I was the Lucky Duck. By a seemingly chance encounter I ran into Tom Lundin. He has a great blog outlining his very unique and awesome Google SketchUp skills:

I was lucky enough to have him draw up my house:

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