Burned Out Excitement!

and I have been trying to get ready to sell her condo.  We’ve gone to a bunch of open houses, started tying up the projects we’ve been procrastinating on for months now, and started identifying things that we need to sell, give away, or put into storage…  I lined up a 5×5 storage locker for us to keep the stuff we want to move to our new home, but that makes the current place look cluttered to prospective buyers.

This weekend we have several projects to keep us busy, including packing boxes to put in storage, installing the threshold under the bathroom door, painting, electrical, etc…   I know that after we move, there will still be tons of projects to do in the new place, but at least then I won’t feel so guilty about procrastinating, as I won’t be holding up the sale and purchase…  I’m really excited to finish this process and move into our new home…  That said, this weekend is going to suck…  :)

God damn I hate home improvement.

Saturday afternoon we ripped out the old bathroom door, which was less traumatic than I expected..  Didn’t really do any damage to the walls removing the trim and ripping out the old door jamb/frame.  It seemed like everything was going to be peachy, I nailed the small lengths of 2×4 we purchased into the opening to make it a standard-er size, we started attaching the jamb to the frame and making sure it was square, level, and plumb.  We nailed it in on the hinge side in two points, and then shimmed it out on the lock side to give it a test run… And the door struck the jamb at the top lock side of the door.  Not only that, but I drove the nails in all the way, so we had to mar up the jamb getting them back out.  We playedaround with raising the sides and all kinds of things, but no matter what we tried even though the jamb was square/true/plumb/everything it just didn’t matter.  We worked on this whole project for about 5 hours and eventually gave up for the night.

Sunday, we procrastinated as long as possible and started anew.  We were just about to start when Corinna had the flash of genius to call her stepfather for advice.  He is retired now and doing lots of the construction on the addition to her parents’ home in Michigan.  We mentioned that we padded out the space to make the opening “the right size” with six short pieces of 2×4.  We explained that the old 2×4 that formed the hinge-side of the existing frame was completely cockeyed and we were using shims to correct for it.  He provided the (now obvious) suggestion of getting a single 80″ 2×4 to run the entire length of the hinge side, and shim that as necessary to make sure it’s plumb, etc.  Using one long board eliminates discrepancies in plumb/true/squareness between the 3 separate pieces of 2×4.  He also suggested using screws instead of nails, because you have more fine-tuning available by tightening/loosening the screws, plus if you screw up you can easily back them out.

With this knowledge in hand, Corinna ventured out to Home Depot (knowing how much I hate going to that store), got the 2×4, we had it up and shimmed out in 20 minutes, and less than an hour later the door was hung and swinging freely.

So I guess the moral of this story is that installing a pre-hung door probably IS easier than fitting one into an existing jamb if you know what you are doing and do appropriate prep work.

Update: Re-edited this to remove some nonsense sentences (I “repurposed” this text from an email I sent to my dad).

The god of renovations finally smiles

The bathroom is finished! Well, the contractor is finished, at least. and I have some small work to do ourselves (like baseboard and door trim, painting, light sanding, etc. — stuff that is easy for us to do but would have cost alot to have them do). Anyway, I took a shower in my own home this morning as opposed to having to shower at work, so I’m a much happier camper.

Anyone know what’s going on with the CSH systems? I can’t connect to anything, and really need to check my mail, I’m expecting a very exciting message.

Bathroom Update

got a call from the contractor a few days ago asking her to be home at 3pm yesterday to sign off on the bathroom. Corinna and I called bullshit on this right away, looking at the work left to be done in the bathroom. I advised her to call the company before she left work so she didn’t waste any of her time. When she did, they were “running behind, but should be done around 6pm”. I left work a little early so I could be home at ~5pm to have a word with the contractors. When I got home, the owner, site manager, and plumber were there, surprised that I came home.

They started off saying they hadn’t finished, and that they’d have to come back to finish the access panel for the water shutoff as well as the radiator. I took this opportunity to add the chase they were on contract to install to box out the steam main. They looked at me like I had lobsters crawling out of my ears. My temper flared instantly, as I knew they had convieniently forgotten about this work. I calmed myself down (“He took a duck in the face at two hundred and fifty knots”) and pointed them to the original sales agreement which specifically mentioned either moving the steam main into the wall or boxing it out. I was originally concerned when I saw the plaster guy doing the walls but not boxing in the pipe, but I remembered someone mentioned they usually use some kind of panelling for those tasks. But I honestly think they were trying to not do the work, which pisses me off.

I’ve continued to updated the photos of the job, but don’t be fooled by the titles, “Day 15” is not elapsed time, but worked time. This wednesday will be the 4 week mark since the beginning of this job. “Day 15” doesn’t count weekends or the several days (one stretch was 4 days in a row) that they didn’t do a god-damned thing.

Renovations Fun

So the contractor eventually showed up yesterday and begun demolition of our bathroom. Corinna waited around all morning for them to come, they were supposed to show between 8 and 9am, but didn’t show until 2pm… The guy doing the demolition got most of the wall down (which is a tall order since it is all steel-backed plaster) and came back today to finish the job. I will be taking pictures each day as I did for my parents’ renovations. I will also be showering each day at work, which should be interesting.. Fortunately I won’t be spending the next two weekends in Boston, so I don’t have to figure out a showering procedure for when I’m not at work.

Attended a great lecture today on some interesting image processing algorithms developed by a colleague at our parent division (Goodrich Optical & Space Systems).

A tired morning entry

A generally fun weekend… and I tidyed up the kitchen and started putting the shelves to use. They look even better populated than they did empty, I took some pictures; I try and get them up later today. We also installed some bifold doors in the closet near the bathroom, which was a bit of a chore.. Corinna thought it would be a simple job, perhaps puffed by the cabinet success last weekend, but I knew it couldn’t possibly go smoothly. We had to remove a shelf and shorten it by about two inches because it stuck out beyond the closet and the newly-installed doors were hitting it. Removing this shelf was a nightmare… There are also ~2″ gaps on either side of doors, which we had planned for and have wood to fill, but nothing is true in our apartment, so it is going to require some planing.

Sunday we went to Duxbury to swim in ‘s pool.. It was such a perfect day to spend in the water, we always have a great time out there, many thanks to Sir Adam.

The contractors are apparently going to start our bathroom renovations tomorrow, which is exciting… Even though they were supposed to give us 1.5 weeks notice, yet they called Corinna at 5pm on Friday saying they were starting Tuesday… So we had to have a mad scramble to get the tile and sink… On top of all that, I have to pad hours in the beginning of the week, as I am taking Friday off to go to Jersey for some boating with some of my friends..

Weekend Hijinks

This was a crazy weekend… Friday night I went over ‘s place to watch the first World Cup games (Tivo delayed, of course). There was chili to be eaten, booze to be dranked, and friends to scream and yell with. Before lots of people got over we played some pass-around Worms. We had to play passaround because people had to wait until Sunday to get their DS Lites… Anyway, that was tons of fun and I didn’t get home until like 1am.

Saturday morning I had to wake up extra-extra early to take to South Station, as she was headed to NYC for the weekend to visit with some college friends.. When I got back to the apartment I couldn’t sleep, so I watched some TV and geeked out until noon. At noon I returned to Matt’s for grilling, DS-in, and more soccer. At night we headed out to Saugus for some delicious Kelly’s Roast Beef, but on the way noticed that the Krispy Kreme in Medford (which has been closed for months) will soon be replaced by ANOTHER KELLY’S! Kelly’s delicious roast beef only half as far away? Sign me the fuck up!

Sunday was more of the same, except Pat and Matt both had their DS’ finally, so we were able to play wireless Worms instead, which was way more fun… Saw Raiders of the Lost Ark with the film club last night, which was awesome on the big screen, and Corinna returned, exhausted, from her weekend trip.

This morning we met with the contractor who will be renovating our bathroom in the next few weeks, which took way longer than expected, but he answered alot of important questions for us and made us feel generally better about the whole process.