August 31, 2014
I have been in the habit of looking thru Craig's List a couple times a week; looking at freebies and cheap, but good condition items. If you recall, way back last year, CL was where I found the futon that is my couch/bed for very cheap and it was used in the EX's apartment before I moved into my own house. I also found other stuff for both EX and me - filing cabinet and dog pen come to mind - for very little $$.
I have been wanting to get rid of the 2nd couch, which I got for free from the side of the road when I worked in MA. The couch was ugly and very used, but mainly it was too big for my real needs. It also had no legs, so picked up every dog hair, cat hair, bird feather and other detritus that came within 2 feet of it. Oh yeah, it was useful. It did a great job holding the cat bed, my leathers when I got home from work and the plethora of throw pillows, but since I never have any visitors, that is all it was useful for.
I wanted something smaller, chair like, but bigger than the standard easy chair. I also wished for another futon, just because they are so handy being convertible (cousin threatened to come from Chicago with his sons - not that that will probably happen, but one never knows). So, I got to investigating futon chairs. Much to my surprise, they make them much like my wood fram futon couch. But dang, the price tag for a new one is very steep, so I couldn't justify getting one.
Well about 10 days ago, I was on CL and I searched for futon chair, and lo-and-behold, one had been placed on the list just a couple days before. After accertaining that it was still available, I offered less than what they wanted, the offer was accepted and last Saturday, I went to Nashua to pick it up. To fit in my Jeep, we had to disassemble it (no surprise) and after I got it home, I got it reassembled in only 2 tries (first time was completely backward. I had contacted EX to see if he would help me get the old couch to the dump, and he came by that afternoon. This is the last picture of the couch taken the night before (I had already taken the pillows and throw off of it)
So, here is my newest piece of furniture (I think it is actually younger than any of the furniture I have, excpet my linen pantry, at 10 years old). Notice that Cop Cars old pillows and runner actually go pretty nicely on it. I was considering getting a new cover, but I think it is fine - I will need to use a different throw for protecting the seat portion though)
The cats started exploring once it was in place. Fuzzy just jumped on it and was laying beside a pile of pillows when Tory attacked him from the floor (summertime the cats are not the best of friends). I looked up from reading just in time to see the pillows fall around Fuzzy, protecting him from Tory's jabs. Tory was befuddled at what had happened to Fuzzy (he couldn't see hmi from the floor), so stalked away.
When the coast was clear, Fuzzy took control of the cat bed (he is the only one that uses it anyway) and settled down for a nice long nap.
I already like the replacement as it is nice and firm to sit on (I use it when putting on my boots), and widens up the path between the front door and main part of the living room. Should last me a good long time, and hey, it's wood framed, can't get any better than that!
August 17, 2014
A Roof Over my Head
Last Monday, the roofers showed up and started stripping the roof. Surprise, surprise, there were two layers of shingles, so those companies that quoted as being able to lay the metal over the shingles (2 of the companies bidding), were full of it. Laying metal over one layer is okay, but it is a definite no-no to lay it over two (same with regular shingles).
By Tuesday they had the roof totally stripped and the weather tight membrane in place. Good thing because Wednesday was a rainy day. In fact, there was a small issue with a leak that followed my vent pipe to the bathroom - I will be getting a new bathroom ceiling installed in the future (It wasn't horribel, but he did come right out and make some adjustments with the underlayment when I got home and discovered the issue).
Thursday they were back to work and they finished up yesterday.
I am quite pleased with the results, and my selection of color (yeah, I know, after all the bitching I've done about the green paint in this house). I had originally thought to pick a color that would come close to matching the bay window trim. Then I thought that would be too light, so maybe go with a brown to match the top portion of the house. But when it came time to give him my selection, I typed out Forest Green in my email - glad I did!
We agreed upon a hold back for when he comes back to do the bathroom ceiling. He was willing to do it right away, but I want to get the rest of the walls at least partly stripped. My reasoning is that the sheetrock (I'm replacing the crappy soft tiling with sheetrock) will but up against the walls, so if I don't at least tear out the top portions, when I go to really do the bathroom, the ceiling would get damaged anyway. Yeah, because I was running out of projects - not.
Bathroom ceilin aside, I am quite pleased with the guys, and they were very responsive when I did have an issue. Hey, and they let the dog out at least once a day, so Prince didn't have any accidents while they were here :)
Last weekend I happened to go out to the front yard when it was getting dark (I think I forgot to grab my mail). As I was coming back up the driveway, I looked up and saw something amazing.
I have a blanket hanging in the living room bay window until sheetrock is installed. The pattern is to the inside, and the side facing the outside is white. It looks that way all day long, but once it is dark, and I have the LR light on, transformation:
The picture isn't very good because it was dark, but if I used the flash, it really muted the effect, but I think you get the idea of what the neighbors are treated to at night. I like it and may have to figure out if I can do something to get a similar effect all the time (not with that blanket, but with something of varying colors like that.
June 28, 2014
TWo weekends ago I started demolition in the bedroom and last weekend I started demolition in the craft room. Lat last night I finished getting up the new insulation. One would think that insulation would be easy and straight forward; cut batts into 92" lengths and stick them inbetween the studs. That would not be so much the case. I had about 8 sections between the two rooms that I could do that to. The rest I had to cut the batts both lenghtwise and in width as they did such a crazy framing job. Most openings were 7 - 12" wide so it took quite a bit of cutting to get the job done right.
One more room to go in the demolition department then I need to hang plastic, then all will be ready for sheetrock.
June 19, 2014
Wednesday Happenings of Note
Two things of interest happened last night:
STBX is now the EX. I don't have the paperwork, but he texted saying he got the final paperwork from the courts.
Interesting phone call from a former co-worker and good friend. Things may be afoot, but too early to tell. I may have an opportunity to go to Isreal though. If it pans out, I'll have to get a passport.
May 31, 2014
Last weekend I spent tearing out the long living room wall sheet rock. Then I started tearing out the rock wool (about R4 insulation), screwing in pieces of plywood to cover the holes the top 9", and putting up the new R-13 insulation. I only got to the picture window with that part of the project, but accomplished what I needed to get done for this weekend's project.
The old front door (frame and all) was uninstalled today and the new front door put in its place. Along with that a new storm foor was installed. I spent nights this week painting the door so it would be ready for the install. I still need to paint the frame, but for now, I am quite please with the results. The first picture is of the old front door and the new insulation, The rest of the new door.
The storm door has a hide-a-screen, which I totally love. My helper and I also installed the storm door I got for the back door, which did not have a storm door at all. That one is the same style, but in basic white as I'm not really as picky on how the back of the house looks. Additionally, it is the next step down from the front storm door and they didn't have any of those in the sandstone (or whatever color that is). I refused to pay the extra for the "better" door as the energy efficiency is the same. Hey, I can always paint it later if I want.
I managed to get all the locks keyed to the basement door lock, so now I am down to only needing 2 keys for the house (one for overhead garage door, and one for the other 3 doors). Now the only thing to do is put on the closure systems for the storm doors, but those can be done any time.
I am happy with the progress that was made today!
May 26, 2014
Yesteday I tore down the sheetrock from the living room wall in preperation for plugging up the gaps in the plywood and putting in real insulation. Then mowed the lawn (or the swamp in the case of about 1/4 of it). By the time I was done, I took a few moments to rest on the lawn furniture, enjoy the view from the south side of the house, and listen to the birds.
That empty lot fills in nicely and you can hardly tell I'm not in the country anymore.Very relaxing.
May 17, 2014
House Building Anomalies
Last weekend the temps at night were finally such that I decided to strip off the sheetrock in the south-facing wall in the living room. I immediatly found why the heating bills were so high, but why the house stayed cold.
Yes, you can see pa duct running up outside the wall because the top 9" of wall has no plywood on the outseid - it is open to the overhan of the foof. So I spent a lot of time custom cutting plywood pieces to scab into the holes.
last night I caulked the edges of the plywood to keep insects and small rodents from using that as an egress into the house. It will be several weeks that this area is open as I plan on replacing the window. I also plan on stripping a whole lot more sheetrock in other rooms as those holes at the top have to go the entire perimeter of the house (the configuration of the roof guarentees that).
Already used to any project in this house being more involved and taking longer than it should becasue of all the weird issues that crop up.
May 03, 2014
A couple of weekends ago, STBX and Jimmy delivered one of the old sheds from my previous house. I didn't think they could get it on the trailer (heck, didn't think it would fit), nor did I think it would make the trip. However, STBX proved me wrong; it fit nicely on the snowmobile trailer (which tips, making it easier to load and unload), and it survived. So now, I am the proud owner of a very used shed. Oh, and he left me the prybar that is proped against the shed in the second picture.
Later that day, STBX also delivered the patio furniture (one of my BD presents from 2004 - and he got the deck furniture). So now I just need to put some spar urathane on it to protect it from the weather.
last weekend I moved the snowblower,garden tools and mower to the shed. The garage is heaving a sigh of releif as it was stuffed to the gills!
Brush and Mulch Pile and Property Lines
As I was getting ready for my ride this morning, a man was driving by and stopped to talk to me. He wasn't there just to chat, he was there to inform me that my mulch pile, doggie dropping dump and brush piles were on his land. I told him I was under the impression that they were on my land, and that my land went to the tree behind the mulch pile, but if not, then I would be happy to move them. Now, the guy was very nice, so I didn't take offense. He also mentioned that he was having someone come in to clean up all the leaves and dead wood on his property.
After my ride, I was going to start moving the brush piles, but then I saw something that made me get out my deed and figure out exactly where my land ended. Turns out that 99% of the stuff that he complained about is on my land; one of the brush piles did just slightly (I mean - maybe 6") onto his property. Since he is a landlord for the apartment's which land was in question, I didn't know how I could contact him. I didn't want him to have his guy remove my brush piles as there are some birds that use at least one of them for nesting underneath.
So I went to the apartments and they had a For Rent sing, with a phone number. I called and talked again to the guy, explained the situation (my land goes along a stone wall and to a metal pin. He asked if I had located the pin - yep, and it is by the big tree that I said I thought was my property line. He then proceded to explain how he had never located the pin. Oh? Really? That is amazing since I can see it from my back door (that is what I saw when I let Prince out that led me to dig out my deed).
That pin is now a part of the tree it is leaning agianst, so hasn't moved any in the last, oh, say 15+ years. In the second picture, the doggie doo pile is in the foreground, clearly on my land.
And what about that rock wall. Oh, he didn't know about that either. To give him the benefit of a doubt, it is rather hard to see as it is old, decrepit and sunken in. But I was pretty sure my property went to the huge rock in back - and it seems to be part of the rock wall.
Trust me, in person you can tell where the wall is and where the corner is made. Sure, it doesn't stick out, but if you look for it, you can find it.
So, once I explained this to him, and told him I would move the small part of the brush pile that is on his land, he seemed to be okay with it. Hopefully he explains this all to whomever he hires to clean up his property, because I will not be happy if he removes my brush piles (and the birds won't be happy either).
But, the real moral to this story is not to trust that someone knows what he is talking about when it comes to property boundaries. Make sure you have a copy of your deed accessible so that if you need it on a weekend, you've got it.