Thursday, December 30, 2010

Doing Our Part to Stimulate the Economy

Ah, the fun part of the home project. The buying of stuff. This week, I bought a lot of stuff.

First, on Tuesday, I ordered cabinets for the kitchen. I went to a place in South Philly recommended by a friend. I'm glad I did, because, otherwise, I would have ended up at Ikea, paying more money, and still having to assemble my chip board kitchen. At this place, the cabinets they sell are all solid wood, will arrive assembled, and were far less expensive (possibly because they were made by 7 year old children in China). There was a lot of yelling into telephones in Chinese involved during the order process(not by me, by the sales guy). Bottom line...the cabinets will be arriving on New Year's Eve. They look like this, except no glass doors:

On the same day that I broke my bank account on cabinets, CPM and I also proceeded to our local Home Depot, which I seem to visit at least once per day these days anyway, to take advantage of the "use your high rate store credit card and get your appliances interest free if you pay them off in 12 months" deal. Luckily, I was approved for enough to cover the cost of all of the kitchen appliances, plus a set of LG front loading, stackable washer and dryer. (Dear whomever buys my current home: you're welcome...the washer and dryer that I'm leaving behind are awesome, which is why I just bought the same set for my new house).




You're jealous right? They're all stainless steel! I got a double oven! And a french door refrigerator! God, I'm drooling just thinking about these appliances.

In the days leading up to our spendy escapades, CPM was working diligently to install tons of trim. He's no carpenter, but you would never know it from the way things turned out. I played assistant carpenter and got to use the nail guns and wood putty. (Note: it is best to keep your blood sugar up when working as a team to install trim. I may or may not have had a minor foot stampy tantrummy moment during baseboard installation brought upon by attempting to get through the day solely on chocolate chip cookies, Cheez Its, and the contents of a box of Hershey's Pot O Gold chocolates.)

Front Door


The Big Picture

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Floors and Finishes

I haven't been doing a good job keeping track of the changes to the new place. When last I typed here, we were installing a fence. Since that time, the fence was completed, a fresh dumpster was delivered (seriously, this is the last dumpster, I swear), the garage got cleaned out, we painted every room and installed the hardwood floors. I only have pictures of the floor installation and living room paint. I neglected to take any photos of any of the other paint colors. Every time I would go to take a picture, there would be a big pile of trash in the way and I would get disgusted and put my camera or phone away, not wanting to share our messy home improvement ways with the world.

photo 1

photo 2

photo 3

The walls in these photos are painted a Martha Stewart Living color, Magnetite, that I had matched by my MAB paint store. (I refuse to purchase paint from Home Depot or Lowe's, and we've always used MAB products in all of our paint projects.) CPM hates the color, but I love it. I keep telling him to wait and see, that the gray will be a great background for whatever colors we want to bring into the mix.

The floors are strand woven bamboo (in tiger) purchased from Ambient Bamboo. We chose the pattern by visiting a local Lumber Liquidators, then I did an internet search to see if I could get a better price on a similar product. Not only was the Ambient product better, but the plank size was much wider. Ambient shipped the product to me via UPS Freight, and I had to help the UPS guy unload the truck. That sucked, since it was cold and windy on the delivery day, and there were 50 boxes that each weighed 50 pounds divided between 2 skids. It got even better when one of the two skids just broke, so the boxes on that skid had to be unloaded from the UPS truck and taken to my front steps individually. Eventually I just gave up, piled the boxes on my lawn, and called CPM so that he could send help (i.e. two of his employees) to me to get the boxes into the house.

We had to rent a special nail gun to install the floors, as the material is an engineered bamboo product, and it is so hard that traditional hardwood nail guns won't work properly. The rental gun jammed approximately 800 times during the process, and CPM said a lot of bad words while unjamming the gun, but in the end, we got it done. I love the floor. CPM plans to form a break dance fight club. (First rule of break dance fight club: no talking about break dance fight club.) I wish I had gotten video of his back spins.

Currently, our mechanic is installing tile in the bathrooms. Yes, people, it is possible that I will have a flushing toilet early next week! I may not have doors, but, by god, I can pee inside! You don't realize what an advantage a guy has until you've had to pee in a port a potty when it's 19 degrees outside.