Monday, October 08, 2007

New Cabinets

Well it has been a long while since I have written anything here. I have just been busy. For a couple months there I was working 23 days out of the month for one of my jobs. I then was just too busy working on the house to have time to talk about working on the house. But, the time has finally come and we now have new cabinets. All of the junk that had to go on just prior to getting the new cabinets included:
-rewiring the second floor
-hanging sheetrock
-mudding sheetrock
-electrical stuff for the kitchen
-cleaning, repointing, and putting gloss on the chimney
-tearout and replacing the floor boards
-framing out a whole new wall
-primer and painting
-tearout of the old cabinets
-tearout of the old plumbing
-hanging the tin ceiling
The list goes on and on.
I finally was able to call up the cabinet people at Old River Cabinets so they could come out and do a final measurement. A couple weeks later the cabinets were installed.
So as you may recall the dining room looked like this:

And the kitchen looked like this:Now the changes:

The countertops are being installed right now and I should have pics up soon of those. But for now it is time to get back to working on the house. I promise to update this blog again soon.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

YEA YEA It has been more than a month.

I know I know. It has been since the beginning of Sept since I made a blog entry. So sue me. Obviously it hasn't killed you not being able to read a new one. I will give you some stats of how my past couple months have been:

13 days at the fire station (sometimes for only half a day)
6 days on call for LifeNet
1 lunch with a friend
1 meeting the comcast guy
1 b-day party
1 day of golf
1 VA Tech game
Which all equals 24 days that had stuff going on.

16 days working for the fire dept
3 days on call for LifeNet
1 day Grace singing at church
2 days meeting the air conditioner guys
1 day meeting the heating oil guy
1 day meeting the water heater guy
2 days of the folk festival
1 day meeting the window guy
That 27 days of stuff for Oct.

Now for what I have gotten done on the house. I have worked on the roof some more. The problem is that it takes about 2-3 hours of scraping to get the old paint off the roof. Also I can only work on it when the forecast does not call for rain within 24-32 hours. So that limits the time when I can work up there. But, I have gotten 2 more panels done and a bunch more patching. Only like 15 more panels to go.

Today I started working on the basement also. I figured it was a good diversion from the roof on days I couldn't work up there. So today I scraped down one wall and painted it. It will need another couple coats, but it is looking better. It will be nice to waterproof the basement some and clean it up real well.

I forgot to mention in the listings above that I brewed 10 gals of beer, but have only bottled 5 gals so far. The other 5 decided to start to ferment some more when I took it out of the fridge. So to avoid bottles from blowing up I am waiting for it to simmer down a bit before bottling it.

I also have been breaking up the old sidewalk in the back yard for the future patio. Why do it now you may ask? Well, I had a sledge hammer and a day off so why not break up some concrete? I then take it to the weird dump.

*the Weird dump*
Why is the dump weird you ask?
Well the city dump on Hopkins road is nothing but a very large pole barn with a concrete floor. All that you do is back up to one of the sides of the dump and throw all of your trash onto the concrete. Then a bull dozer comes and pushes the stuff you put on the floor and puts it into a tractor trailer. The truck then drives off with the stuff. It may be just me, but I think that they could take out one or two of those steps. But heck I can't complain. With the Richmond city sticker on my truck it is all free. Which is different than y'all county dwellers.

Well that is about it for now. If I ever end up finishing a project that I start I will post some pics of it on here. But as for now who really wants to see a half painted roof? Ok you caught me, it is not even half painted. Maybe lets go with a quarter painted.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

In the Ghetto

(in your best Elvis voice)
As the snow flies
On a cold and gray Chicago mornin
A poor little baby child is born
In the ghetto
And his mama cries
cause if there's one thing that she don't need
Its another hungry mouth to feed
In the ghetto

OK so this is a little gehetto. What do you do if your roof is leaking? Well, you try to go to the attic and find the leak.
Well, the attic is not accessible in the area that it is leaking.
So, what you do is make a hole in the ceiling to find out where the leak is. It will be needing to come down to be repaired anyways. So what I have done is make a hole in the ceiling of the bedroom. It was raining again today so I was able to see where the actual leak was. Good deal. But, I can't fix the leak b/c of the rain. So now I have a hole in the bedroom going to the attic which goes to the roof that is leaking because of rain. So how do you go about not getting your bedroom all wet.

The Answer is:

(Game Show Announcer Voice-Over) !!!!!!!This high quality, no rust, no bust, water leakage, self contained, collection device, can be yours for the low Low LOW payments of 3-- $34.95 per month for 7 months! (with 5 balloon payments of $19.87 on a rotating bi-monthly schedule for 18 months)

With this system you will receive the:

Water Collection Bladder, with Manifold and Distribution Hoses! NSA Tested (Yes I meant NSA) -Blue, Secure, Sticky, Onetime use only, Roll of Tape! For positively securing your Collection Bladder to your Bedroom Ceiling.

But wait there's more!

You also receive this one time gift offer of the patented collection cistern, if you call within the next 3 minutes!

Call Now!!!!!! Act Fast!!!!!! Supplies are Limited~

Hey well I promised some pictures this time. Here's some more regular pics:

Here's the new panel box.

Some of my plumbing skills.

The one flower boarder that we have.

And the rest of the yard. (you can't tell, but I have been trying to clean it up.)

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Catching up

Stop me if you heard this before.
1 Its been a while since I posted
2 I have been mudding the walls
3 I have been sanding the walls
4 I have been working on the yard
5 Yea you have probably heard all of that information already.

To be honest with you this is the main reason why I haven't posted anything lately. I have, and haven't, been doing a fair amount of work on the house.

The haven'ts is because it got kindof hot here for a couple weeks so I limited my work so I didn't pass out and fall off a ladder or something. That would be interesting. Grace coming home from work to find me laid out on the stairs.

But the work that has been completed has been varied. (In no particular order)

We had the electrician come out and upgrade our service coming into the house and upgrade the panel box. This was necessary because the airconditioner needs more slots in the breaker box than we had. The old box was a 60 amp box and we upgraded to the 200 amp box which I think would be more than we would ever need in a house our size.

I tried calling the air guy to have him come out and start on the air conditioner but he needs to get back to me when he is at a point where he can come in and install the system.

I finished mudding the walls in the hallway. Now I need to egt the sheetrock and put that on the ceiling. Then we will be ready to paint.

In the back we started working on all the roots along the fence line. I had Casey come in the other day to help me with that. He was a tremendous help cleaning out the webwork of vines that crisscross the yard. We also started prying up the sidewalk in the back. We then took everything to the dump in the new to us, yet old, truck.

Also during this whole month we have gone to the beach twice and Busch Gardens about 3 times. We have also been working some overtime and taking LifeNet calls.

As most of y'all know Grace left 10,000 Villages this month also. She has started at VCU for her PHD and is getting all of that stuff straight. I am really happy for her that she is doing what she wants to do and will be happy doing.

As far as me and work it has been going well. I have pretty much finished all of my ladder operator training and am waiting for the ominous dominous from my Capt and then I will be totally cleared, which will be good. I have trying to put together all of my ODP (officer development program) certifications together to see what else I need to complete that. I know as of now all I need for Firefighter Specialist is 2 more classes and another year or so of acting officer time and then I can apply for that position with a pay increase of 5%.
I have also been helping teach some classes with the recruit schools lately. That has been pretty fun. I am usually one of the auxiliary helpers with the classes, but it is good to watch the recruits learn how to work things out and all. The last class that I was at was a lost firefighter class. This whole concept is actually only several years old. The fire service started to realize that we had firefighters dieing in situations that could have been avoided, so they started taking such incidents and learning from them to find out how it could have worked out better. With the class the other day we had situations of firefighter that had left the hoseline and had basically gotten lost. They then ran out of air and collapsed and the recruits would have to go in and find them, give them more air, and pull them out. Pretty simple sounding but, if you include the fact that there is zero visibility, your in a warehouse which is several thousand square feet, and they have left the hose you have to use other techniques to find them. So that was pretty cool.
The funniest part was a scenario called the "Rat Trap". Basically it goes as such: There is one firefighter that runs out of the building telling the recruit crew that his crew is lost and that they need to help him find them. He's like follow me I know where they are. So they start to follow him and he is like running ahead of them yelling at them to hurry up. when they catch up they follow them into this box which is maybe 10x10 feet. The kicker is that, that is the trap. the other instructors lower a wall from the top of the box down on top of the firefighters in the box. And so the trap has been sprung. The wall that is lowered simulates a sort of lean to collapse so it forms a triangle that is smaller and that blocks the exit. The firefighter whos crew was lost (and is one of the instructors) then starts to totally freak out (which is actually possible)as the other instructors are hitting the sides of the box with wood to make a bunch of noise and add to the madness. Sadly I didn't get a chance to run this event but Graham did. When he freaked out he was hilarious. He started yelling and crying Mommy and saying I need to get the f@#k out of here and such. He would then start to try to climb over the other crew and tear at there gear. He said at one point he was like, give me the radio I need help and the person gave him the radio and he threw it out the box. The whole scenario is designed to produce a high stress situation, but to also expose the recruits to this and see how they handle it. The ideal situation is for the crew to keep their wits and control the firefighter that is freaking out while identifying that they are in a collapse and calling for help. You see, that even with veteran firefighters they have the mentality that they can get out of this on their own and that they don't need help and then they end up running out of air and dieing. So it is an excellent tool that can't be explained and only experienced.

Anyways, that is the long and short of it. I will try to take some picture today of the work that we have been doing so the blog will have some decoration and pretty stuff to see. Now it's time to get back to work on the house.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Some things never change.

Well I realized that it was the 19th and I haven't left a post in like 18 days. The thing that was sad though is that not much has happened in 18 days. I have worked a bunch of overtime, I have been working on finishing the hallway (which is actually almost done, at least the prep work and all.), we had a fence guy come in but it was a little more than we thought it would be, we had people over for the 4th of July, I have an electrician coming in for an estimate today, we have been sweating to the 100 degree heat and we are going to go and look at a cheap truck today for hauling stuff.

The hallway has an approx 1 foot square portion left that I need to fix once the ladder comes back.

The fence will cost $2600 if we go with this company. We are researching how much to do it ourselves.

The 4th was fun cooking out and all.

The electrician said over the phone that it avg's $1100 for an upgrade on the panel. We will see once he comes.

We got hot last night so we turned on the air conditioner that is in Grace's office. We then put a fan in the door to blow the cool air into the bedroom. That worked pretty well so we will probably be doing that from now on. I don't know how efficient it is, but hey it's hot.

Blue told me that his old neighbor is selling a Jeep pickup truck. He said it is in good condition mechanically, but the upholstery is torn. But all I need to use it for is hauling stuff around. A seat cover can cover up the seats that are torn.

And that's about it. Sorry nothing funny or witty this time. I was up for about 23hrs yesterday and I am still sortof tired. I did sleep pretty well last night and into the morning.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

Hmmmm......What could it be?

Today I decided to finally finish up some loose ends with all the plumbing and such. I had to go to Lowe's for the only trip of the day. It was a good day only going once. I got some bolts so I could secure the spigot to the wall. So I got home and bolted the thing to the wall on the outside. I then went under the house again. Nothing was leaking so it still is a good day. I secured all of the pipes with the pipe hangers that I had bought the other day. So everything is going well.

One odd thing though. As I was getting the light and all of my tools and such out from under the house I see this weird object.

You see in older houses like this you have the floor joists, ok, and then in between of the floor joists you have these sort-of struts that cross in between of the joists like an X. Ok. These I think are used to keep the joists from twisting and such.

WELL, on the bottom of one of the X's is this baggy. Well, in this baggy is this green leafy substance. Well my first thought is that this nice young man that owned the house before us (and is now residing in a West VA prison) must have been a really good cook. Yes a cook. He must of had a garden and grew and dried his own "herbs". Yes yes, that must be it. Some type of oregano or basil or something. Well not being sure of what the "herb" could be I just decided to throw it away. I just mixed it in with the other "weeds" from yesterday that I had thrown in the super can in the back.

After disposing of that I went back outside and sprayed the weeds once again, this time with actual Round Up and not ant killer.

And that's about it for the day. Not much else to report.

Friday, June 30, 2006

Excuses Excuses

My excuse for my stupidity is that I was tired today.

(That doesn't explain all the other days of my life though.)

I was sort-of tired today b/c we had a trailer fire last night and I didn't get to bed till 2am and woke up at my normal time of 7am. I came home and talked to Grace for a bit. I checked my emails and drank coffee. Just another normal day when I come home from work. Grace went to work and I sat on the couch and watched some TV to rest. I watched the Germany Argentina World Cup game that was on and ate some lunch.

I then went outside to work on the yard. The yard has been getting slightly jungle like again because of the rain and such. I got the weed whacker out and also mowed the lawn. My lawn is a pleasant mix of grass and crabgrass. I have been trying to fight the weeds since getting here and they seem to be slowly loosing the battle. I also still have a bit of other junk that I have been trying to get rid of such as ivy and other nameless stuff that just isn't grass. So after mowing and raking the yard I go into weed control. I have those big spray bottles that have the little hose coming out of the top and the spring loaded plunger that you pull and it squirts the stuff out of the nozzle for you. I have a bunch of these for different things: Weed killer for the lawn, Roundup for the weeds and ivy and such, and Ant killer for, well you guessed it, ants.

They are pretty convenient because I don't have to have a pressure type sprayer that I have to clean and such. When it is done you just throw it away. Well I make the rounds around the house spraying all of the offending weeds with the Round Up. I finish that bottle and go to the broadcast sprayer that goes on the actual lawn. It's one of those that you hook to the garden hose and it is a combination weed killer fertilizer for the lawn. I go around the house spraying the lawn down etc. I then start to put everything away. I went and take the weed whacker and lawn mower to the basement. When I was rolling the lawnmower under the table down there I notice that there is a large sprayer of Round up. Hmmmm. Did I buy an extra one at some time? NOPE! I went to the trash can only to find out that I had successfully sprayed all the weeds down with Ant Killer. OK, OK, you can make fun of me now, but keep in mind my excuse for the day. Well shoot, at least the weeds are now fully protected from ants. No worries in that department anymore.