Friday, April 25, 2008

Hate the bank, hate the bank, hate the bank

It doesn't seem to matter what we get accomplished, it is not enough. The bank, although extending our Rehab loan, is now giving us a hard time about inspections and engineers drawings, which we do not have and are not required to have in our town for the work we have done. The addition was on the house prior to our purchasing it. If the owners at that time did not get the appropriate permits, it is not our fault and we cannot get them after the fact. We have told the bank that we can cancel the remainder of the rehab and to take it off the principal. But apparently it doesn't work that way. If they cancel the rehab loan we would be responsible to pay the mortgage in full within 30 days. AS IF!!

So now we forge ahead, slamming through our to-do lists in order to get the heating system done, our bedroom walls in, our bathroom done and then get the back deck on. All of this in order to be able to refinance and pay off our mortgage with this bank. This bank has been nothing but a nightmare, our General Contractor a nightmare in the fact that he is W2's dad, and doesn't know what the hell he is talking about, therefore screwing us over time and time again on money and issues with the bank. The two combined are lethal.

Ok. breathe. that's all I can do, right? well, that and swinging a hammer, alot!! (all right that's an exaggeration, we have pneumatic nail guns, but you get the idea!)

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


I know I've said this before, but now it is the truth, 100%. The siding is completely finished, bump out window and all. It took W2, who really should be W1 since I don't do nearly as much as he does, 20 hours total to get the siding and detail on the big bump out window off the dining room. It is beautiful. I am often in awe of my husband and this is definitely one of those times. I just could not visualize what it was going to look like. He kept describing it and I would nod and smile as if he was speaking a foreign language, but I couldn't see. He could see and he did a tremendous job of bringing as much detail as possible to the feature, with the limited resources he had available within the vinyl siding. I am so proud of him and impressed by him.

Yesterday was a big day at the house. W2 had the day off in anticipation of the bank inspector and the arrival of our new refrigerator. He worked on electrical in the kitchen in the morning and moved everything out of the path for the fridge. The delivery guys got there and had to take the refrigerator apart in order to make it fit through the doorways. Then they installed it (IE. slid it into the slot and plugged it in), only to learn the doors can't open all the way. Now, I told the good folks at Home Depot that we would have a standard size french door style refrigerator when we designed the kitchen. They told me they built in room for the doors to open fully. Guess what?! They didn't. And now, the world's most expensive refrigerator can't open all the way. Grrr. It's not horrible, just horribly frustrating.

The bank inspector never showed, but W2 did get in touch with him so that's a good thing. They'll handle all of the paper and then he'll come out to take a look at what we've gotten done. Which means we'll get a check and can move on with the furnaces and duct work.

So now onto the kitchen floor. In an effort to have it done before the Breeze flies in from San Francisco we will break open the boxes tonight and start the installation. I can't imagine it is as easy as they say it is, so I have no hope of it actually being done prior to her visit. If it is, it would be a wonderful thing. If it's not, oh well, she knows she is coming to visit a construction zone.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


I cannot describe the great glee this image gives me. I will not be taking it for granted any time soon, that's for sure!

Monday, April 14, 2008

We have cabinets and water!!!

We have cabinets!! and I have photos! how wonderful is that?! My folks came up this weekend to help us. Mom to help me unpack boxes into the cabinets and dad to help W2 plumb water to the kitchen sink. 16 hours and $400 later we have water. I nearly pee'd my pants I was so excited to be able to do dishes, on the first floor.

For any and all out there with plumbing in your future...pex pipe and sharkbites are your best friend. Let me preface this by saying that nothing about plumbing is cheap. Copper is astronomically expensive. Pex had been cheap but the tool required to use it was $400, so therefore expensive. But since the creation of sharkbites, the pex pipe is totally do-able. My father and W2 should be hired to do commercials for this new wonder product. They are so impressed and so excited. My father kept saying things like "watch me sweat this joint...(slides the piece on)...I'm done." All of this while looking at my mother and I, who have no idea what it means to sweat a joint, expecting our awe and excitement. We tried our best, and were certainly thrilled with their enthusiasm and joy. But I don't think you can truly appreciate the ease of the sharkbite if you have nothing to compare it to.

Mom and Dad left last night while I was happily washing every dish we own in my sink, in my kitchen, with running water. Thanks to all of their help, I am four boxes and one stack of drawers away from having a dining room, which would mean the whole downstairs is livable and useable. Can you imagine?! It's nearly too much to grasp.

For now, I find myself gazing into the dining room in awe of how big it is! I am hoping we will be able to have a table before too long. I cleared off the tops of all four pieces of furniture and was able to dust them yesterday. Another absolutely amazing thing for me. So soon, very soon it will meet it's destiny as a viable dining room vs what it has been, a storage facility.

Thursday, April 10, 2008


Since I last wrote a ton of stuff has happened.
1. We bought the kitchen floor
we had planned to install it until we learned that you had to install the cabinets before the floor.
2. We called for cabinet installation
3. The cabinets are being installed today
4. W2 and his dad worked on the bump out window
5. Rigger from MA was here to help for the weekend. He and W2 worked on wiring in our bedrooom
6. I unpacked all the cabinets to ensure nothing was defective or damaged with the help of w2's mom
7. I worked on scraping the kitchen floor free of the laminate goo and paper that is left over
8. I worked on scraping the floor some more
9. and some more!

On Friday the Canadian Diva arrived for a wine sodden visit that was well needed and truly treasured! On Sunday I recieved a call from the Breeze in SF and learned she is coming for a visit the end of the month! I am so very excited, I cannot even tell you! To have one on one time with one of the girls is a gift in and of itself, but to be able to share my home is precious.

I will look forward to her coming and being able to see my new kitchen!! Can you believe it? I'm gonna have a kitchen! Of course W2 tells me last night I still won't have water in the sink until he and my dad dig the trench that needs to be dug out to the drywell. My head almost popped off. Why haven't we thought about this trench in all of the months we haven't had any water? I realize it was winter and digging wasn't possible, but come on! I just feel like I'm left out of the loop and when W2 shares things (like this) it feels like a road block. When I know damn well it isn't, but because it's the first I'm hearing about it, it's frustrating!

But for now, I'll focus on the fact that my cabinets are being installed today.


Thursday, April 3, 2008


We've reached the stage of needing to choose and install the floor in the kitchen. Sheerah finished the taping, priming and painting yesterday. W2 and I had picked out a cheap vinyl sheet flooring last Saturday and set up a measure for estimate for yesterday. I left work in order to meet the contractor and got there 2 minutes prior to the scheduled appointment.

He had already been to the house, measured the floor and left.

I was PISSED!!

I needed to talk to him about the condition of the floor. How much of the old adhesive did we need to get off in order to avoid having to put down subflooring? If it needed subfloor, could we get an estimate with and without that price? What leveling needed to be accomplished prior to the installation? and what not. None of this is crucial, if he had been there for me to have the conversation with him. But he was not.

The salesman that we had worked with last weekend called today with the quote. It was $898.00. I was not impressed, at all. The flooring itself is only $297.00. We had chosen it for the inexpensive nature of it. The design was palatable, but nothing to write home about. The goal is to get a floor down. A floor that will last the five years we intend to use the kitchen as it will be when we are done with this phase. We will eventually tile the floor, when we reclaim the addition. But for now, cheap was key. This quote was not cheap. Or certainly not in the category we consider cheap.

While at the store the display had fallen apart when I moved a sample. Crashing into my arm, leaving two cuts, a scrape, bruise and another bruise on my calf where it hit on it's way to the floor. The salesman neither apologized nor did anything to rectify the situation so know one else was hurt. I was not impressed.

I called the manager today to let him know how unimpressed I was with the salesman and the complete and utter lack of professionalism and courtesy of the estimator. I was offered all kinds of apologies and discounts. None of which mattered. We won't be getting our floor from that establishment. Which really and truly bums me out because they had beautiful stuff and I had envisioned my next kitchen already from product on display there.

Oh well.

We'll continue to shop.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Tom gets it done!!

The siding is done, done, done!!!

I am so excited! The house looks amazing. W2 and his dad will finish the bump out window off the dining room this Sunday and we will be done. Completely.

Sheerah will be done with the taping and painting in the kitchen tomorrow. The installer for the kitchen floor will come out tomorrow to measure. We'll be able to order the floor and set up the installation for that and then...

I can finally have my cabinets installed.