Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Master Bath Shower Almost

Jeff and I finally put a couple more coats of varnish on the ceiling and I repainted the walls in hubbard squash. Eric came out and helped Jeff get the rest of the electrical switches installed; we gave up on the electrician.

We also got the interior of the medicine cabinet finished. We're happy with the glass shelves we bought for this one. As mentioned earlier, we bought them from One Day Glass, which was the least expensive source I found online. Luckily it was within an easy drive.
The shower enclosure was supposed to be finished today, but the installer got the wrong door hinges, so it's going to be another day or two.
We're mostly down to installing some misc. hardware, then we'll be done. Though, likely with us so busy with Halloween right now, it will be next week at least before we finish up.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Halloween Preparations

Halloween used to be a big holiday for us. We would have big parties and invite lots of our friends and cook LOTS of weird foods. But it's been more than a decade since our last party (2005, I think) since we had uprooted to California then retreated back to Oregon.

We are dipping our toe in again to see if it's still our thing. We're having a smaller gathering where we'll feature our weird foods and probably play some games.

Decorating this old house has proved to be a bit of a challenge, as our primary requirement is we cannot damage the woodwork or plaster and our plan to hang lights with picture rail hooks has proven to be a no go; they just keep popping off the rail—it's been super frustrating. (I think we'll likely just end up taping them up with painter's masking tape and pull them down immediately after the holiday.)

Jeff is actually working this week with his friend Eric, so I'll be spending my time trying to finish up Jeff's and my costume and cleaning house. In the evenings, we'll both be working on whatever food prep can be done ahead of time.

We will offer photos of the food after the party, but here are some examples of the kinds of food we used to make:
Brain Jello on left, Kitty Litter box cake on right.
Brain Jello
Not a great picture, but the brain is a crab dip with chips. In the background is eyeball deviled eggs.
Sorry for the crummy quality photos. It guess it's been long enough that the best pictures have all been lost or are residing only on ancient backup drives. Sadly, I'm too lazy to go looking.

This year, we'll be replacing the kitty litter box with a graveyard cake. We have too many friends with cats, and they didn't want to eat it; it looked too close to the real thing. LOL

Update: Here are the pix for the food this year on our food blog. There is a separate post about the graveyard cake, which we were happy with how it turned out.

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Batten Down the Hatches

The Pacific Northwest has a typhoon heading in. (A typhoon is a hurricane in Pacific Ocean speak.) The high winds may miss Portland (I hope), but we will likely get 3 to 5 inches of rain. I guess this is the part where we test both French Drains we installed earlier this year. And, likely, figure out what we need to fix next.

Hurricane Force Winds Ahead For NW

Warning: Major Storms Threaten the Pacific Northwest

How a Remnant Typhoon Could Bring a Destructive Windstorm to the Pacific Northwest

We've been trying to place stuff safely in the yard, just in case it's bad. And we're filling containers with water, just in case.

We'll be keeping a close eye on the basement and see where it leaks next.

Update later: The storm ended up being less windy than it could have been, which was a huge relief. But we still had something like 5" of rain over a 2 day period. We didn't have any problems in our basement family room that had given us problems last year. Jeff and Aaron's French drain worked wonderfully and our basement stayed dry. I guess we can finally put the rugs back down on the floor.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Finally, Basement Faucet

We've been really flaky lately. We've been writing our book and binging too much on Netflix/Youtube lately. But a call from Jeff's friend, Erik sent us back into productive mode this week. First up, he and Jeff installed the faucet in the basement bathroom.
I still haven't oiled this soapstone counter. I need to go find the oil in our master bathroom.

We discovered the hard way Craftsman Design & Renovation didn't grout the hardware installed in the basement shower. We had to open up the wall from the back side to dry it out.
I'm debating whether I go back to them and whine about this. It's been four years since they finished, but this is pretty unprofessional.

We also worked on the master bathroom, but I'll do that in a separate post in a couple of days when we finish.