Monday, May 14, 2012

The start of the finishing of the room

We got a lot done this week!  I am really proud of our work and meeting our deadline of having the house ready to host a mother's day dinner for 13 people.

Crown Moulding
Damn you, angles gamma and alpha!
There is math here that we had no idea how to deal with, goodness gracious.  The math gymnastics stem from from the fact that the angles between the wall and ceiling and the moulding are not 45 degrees.  Our angles were 58 and 32 degrees, which required strange saw adjustments in order to allow us to lay the moulding flat on the saw's table surface for the cuts.  We have a fantastic power mitre saw that is capable of also bevel cuts.  For a mitre cut, you adjust the blade relative to the vertical fence of the saw.  For a bevel cut the blade is adjusted relative to the horizontal table of the saw.  Based on math that wasn't obvious to us, we needed a bevel of 33.9 degrees and a mitre 31.6 degrees.  It took us a while to get the first board properly cut, and a few practice cuts.  Then begun the challenge of nailing through the moulding into the ceiling joists and the wall studs.  After putting up a few nails to hold it in place, we let go of the moulding and stepped back to admire our work.  The moulding promptly fell off and we promptly got into the car to go rent a finish nailer.

Matt went into Home Depot to get the supplies and I stayed in the car with Molly.  This is when he got the demo of how to avoid nailing our hands to the ceiling, and an idea of how loud this thing is.  He was clever in setting me up to fire the gun for the first time, and recording the result.  It's loud, and a little scary to fire.  Once the matter of securing the moulding was handled, we went back to figuring out the angles.  After messing up a few more cuts, we decided to use a cheater method of simply holding the moulding against the saw's table and fence the same way it would be oriented relative to the ceiling and wall respectively.  This allowed us to have just a 45 degree mitre and zero bevel, muuuuuch easier.  We finished the moulding up that late night and were pretty happy, until we opened the back door to bring Molly inside.

Matt called for her and we turned all of the lights on outside to find that our backyard was dog-less.  Further complicating the matter is the fact that our street has buried electrical lines, so no street lamps.  Being calm under pressure, I bolted out the front door honking a squeaker tennis ball, crying and yelling for Molly.  Matt, who smartly took a flashlight, found her in our neighbors yard who's property backs up to ours.  She was panting and happy and had no idea why we were so lathered up, after all she had a fun romp through the neighborhood.  We've since reinforced the area of the fence she got through.

The start of the end
What would a project be without
all of our tools to trip over?
Hello, Orange!
Because we're not professionals, some areas of the crown moulding needed some serious caulk.  There was only one seam that wasn't in a corner which made our lives a little easier.  We did two coats of ceiling paint on the ceiling and crown moulding, then it was time for color!

We are so happy with the color, its exactly what we wanted.  We're ordering the tile today or tomorrow and shrewdly using a competitors coupon to get 20% off our order which is a huge help.  We'll have a tiling party once we get all the supplies, let us know if you'd like to join us for a day of rolling around on the floor (we'll even feed you).  Amateurs welcome because it will be the blind leading the blind.

Exhibit A: a happy painter

Quick screen solution
Magnets to be sewn along bottom,
sides and middle seam.
This is how Molly relaxes after
a hard day's work.
I have run through a few screen doors, as has my brother, as have our dogs.  I didn't want to have screen doors on the french doors between the Pit and the pool deck.  Two of these weighted screens seemed like the best option.  They secure with velcro, but we plan on upgrading this by sewing some of those fantastic rare earth magnets (how do they work?) in key places.  Molly is fine going through them, but has been trained to wait for us at open doors.  So even when the french door is open, we still have to give her the go-ahead to exit.  This doesn't stop her from running back through them into the house immediately after a quick dip in the pool.

Mother's Day
We finished touching up the paint job at 11:00 on Sunday morning then started a flurry of cleaning to prepare for a Mother's day dinner.  We had 11 people over: parents, siblings and spouses and aunts.  Our guests graciously helped us by bringing sides and desserts which was huge because we are still oven-less (hopefully by the 16th, fingers crossed).  We made herbed pork tenderloin on the grill and a rhubarb currant chutney, cucumber salad and a regular salad.  Also on the menu was appetizers, mashed potatoes, citrus rice with carrots and candied walnuts, ravioli salad with pine nuts, tomatoes and olives, rice pilaf, and pound cake with strawberries and whipped cream.  If I forgot your contribution, I apologize.

My brother John and cousin Dave came over a little early to take a maiden dip (voyage?) into the still frigid pool.  David recorded the temperature on the digital  thermometer at 66.6, fitting to say the least.  Molly joined them in the water, as did our mother's dog Olive, or Violet as only my brother calls her.  Olive didn't really seem to enjoy the water too much, her coat is incredibly heavy when wet so she probably couldn't swim too easily.  Matt hopped in too, but I still think it needs another 5 or 15 degrees to be an appropriate temperature.

Matt and I had a great time, it makes us really happy to have a house full of people we love and feed them good food.  After all, isn't it great to eat with friends?

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