Monday, February 27, 2017

Dan, Dan, the Cabinet Man

Two talented carpenters, working together

One of the amazing things about working with dear friends on our remodel is the amazing talent they have and the immense respect we have for their skills and experience. Our friend Dan is a wonderful cabinet maker and he visited on Sunday to talk through our kitchen layout.

Over the years of being a carpenter's wife (cue up Tangled Up In Blue), a fun thing that I have done occasionally is hang out listening to two woodworkers teaming up on a project. For Sunday's visit, I listened quietly to Bill and Dan working together, and was amazed at the terminology they used, some of which is still foreign to me after all these years.

Do you know what these terms mean? No Googling!
  • Fur it out
  • Step piece
  • Burn an inch
Getting it all worked out

Double-checking the appliance measurements

Storage Strata

We have come to that point in our little remodeling project that we knew would eventually arrive--the point where we begin to unload our storage and sort through everything. Part of the reason to do it well before we are done is to rearrange the building materials that we have been keeping in as that clean-up is needed before the final inspection.

We have only reached the first layer, but it is already jogging our way-back memories. And, I located (rather joyfully) two discs of clip art that we bought way back when and used for party invitations before Evite and Facebook.

This clip art had been on my mind recently, as we look forward to hosting big parties again. I remembered with quite a giggle the images I chose of Bill, me, and our kitty AJ for our change of address card, and I hoped to find those images again. For any new invites, we would have to swap out the feline butt for two canines, and I cracked myself up (again!) as I visualized the clip art representing our cat and how often she would show us her rear end.

As I opened the envelope holding the discs, I discovered three bits of correspondence that we created using this art, and we re-read them with amazement of how impactful that point was in our lives. A holiday letter talked about Bill's successful disc surgery and how I was just starting to work in usability. The change of address card said, "We've bought a house that we're really excited about, though some might wonder why." And, it described how we planned to "repair the sunken foundation on the front of the house. We'll take the slope out of the floor while we're at it." Our sense of humor about this project has been solid all the way through and has been our most reliable tool for the remodel.

If you want to see more of this company's clip art, they are at and sell through

AJ always did like parties

Taking our act on the road

Our little family from the way-back machine

What better symbol for a big, big remodel than

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Loving and exhaling

We are very, very close to being able to get a final inspection for our construction. But, not quite yet. However, today we passed an interim inspection that enables us to reset the time clock on our permit for the final push. It has been probably the most stressful inspection we have had so far for several reasons, but it is now officially behind us. We could not ask for a better gift to ourselves for Valentine's Day, whoop whoop! Time to exhale fully and enjoy the moment.

[Irony alert: We do not give each other gifts on Valentine's Day (or Christmas or our birthdays) so perhaps we should schedule our final inspection on Bill's upcoming birthday for the poetic nature of the ultimate gift to ourselves. Then again, no. Just let it fall where it happens on the calendar. :-]

Friday, February 3, 2017

Burrito Friday

If you spend any time at all around carpenters, plumbers, painters, and other tradesfolk, you know that lunch is an important time. You get to sit down, rest your bones, and enjoy something delicious. Often, burritos are on the menu. But, please don't grab these burritos for a meal! Our painting contractor Fred taught us to wrap our paint rollers in foil to enable us to use them the next day without wasting water to wash them, and it takes -a lot- of water to rinse rollers.

We love learning from smart, talented people!

Hot fun on a Friday night

 So, some may wonder what older married folks do on a Friday night. Or maybe they don't.

I always know that Bill is doing amazing things while I am at work, and some days, I get a text towards the end of the day with hints about something that he wants to show me. Tonight, he wanted to unwrap our bathrooms, since the tile and paint are done in all three. So, for our Friday night fun, we unwrapped three wonderful gifts. A lovely experience at the end of a long week.

The floor in the guest bathroom

The guest bath enclosure including tile from Fireclay on Julian in San Jose.

Beauty everywhere!

This carpenter works long, hard days...

...and attends to every detail.

The shower pan in our master bath.

The master bath
The second upstairs bath is unveiled.