Friday, August 15, 2008

The Stink: Resolution

This post is way overdue, as we saw the end of the closet stink saga early last week. We bought a new light fixture for the closet. After it was installed, we turned on the light and waited a suspenseful 15 minutes or smell. We were relieved but skeptical; something so elusive as a closet stink is unpredictable, we've learned. Alas, it's been a week and a half and the smell has not reemerged. It's nice to know the matter is taken care of, and that it was something as simple as a faulty light fixture and not, y'know...something dead between the walls.

No new roof yet--we're waiting to get a second estimate before we jump in--but we're really looking forward to getting it done. I think it will improve the look of the house by 100%.

Let's see, what else is there left to do? Curtains are probably the biggest task, and with school back in session there's no telling when Jessica will have time to work on those. We still have to paint the back door, and there are a few electrical outlets left to replace. Oh, and we'd like to get a vent hood for the stove. Other than those things, we're pretty much where we dreamed we'd be way back in March. Wow...what an experience this has been!

Roof updates to come next, hopefully by the end of the month. Stay tuned.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

The Garage and The Stink

First the stink...
For a month or two now, we have been aware of a strange smell that intermittently emanates from the closet of the master bedroom. We have pondered every conceivable hypothesis and tried to find the source/cause with no success. We eventually developed a strong suspicion that the smell was only present when the closet light was turned on, so we had our electrician look at it. He said the electrical connections were okay and didn't show any evidence of being too hot, but that the light fixture itself looked like it had been getting very hot; he pointed out a place on the fixture where its paint appeared to have bubbled up because of extreme heat. So we're going to replace the light fixture and see if that leaves the closet stink-free.

The garage had been a complete wreck since the week one of this whole thing, and yesterday we finally did something about it. We started at around 9:30 by taking almost everything out of the garage and lining it up in the driveway. Then, after giving the floor a good sweeping, we brought things back in one by one, placing them deliberately and strategically in drawers and on shelves, ensuring firstly that we would be able to call the garage "organized" when we were done, and secondly that we would never be able to find anything again. Things used to be scattered all over, so we thoroughly came to know the location of a particular object by using a crude latitude/longitude scheme, but now things are so neatly stowed away that you really have to know exactly where to look. (Putting things on shelves was particularly detrimental, as it suddenly introduced a third dimension into the tool-inhabitable space that we already spend so much time searching.) Alas, it's for the best, and it certainly feels good to have the clutter gone. We finished at around 4:30.

And, for the first time ever, we were able to park the Jeep in the garage instead of in the driveway:

Things have slowed down a lot (hence the plummeting frequency of blog posts), but I'm glad to say that's because there simply isn't that much left to do. I lack a wall and a half of quarter-round, and we still need to paint the back door. Those are probably the biggest things on the radar. I'm going to start putting together a collection of pictures (not sure what sort of format...maybe a PowerPoint presentation?) showcasing the work that's been done since March--essentially a bunch of before/after pictures. I'll make sure that becomes available here. The next time you hear from me, we may well have a new roof!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Shingles, etc.

I am not disillusioned about the fact that my blog posts about my projects are never going to be as awesome as Nathan’s. So, let me wow you this way. Last Saturday we ate lunch at the PF Chang’s in Knoxville when toward the middle of my meal I am alerted to the fact that the god of football, Phil Fulmer, has chosen to take a seat right next to ME! As you may suspect if you know me well, I did indeed pick up the phone and call my father to share my warm tingly feeling with him. I so wanted to tell him that at the Orange and White game in Chattanooga, when I was eight, I had my picture taken with him and he told me that he had a daughter my age. However, my husband implored me not to “bother” him. I know, you’re thinking “How could he possibly be bothered by you, Jessica?” My thoughts, exactly.

The end of the summer is already here. I wanted to get a few projects done before I started teaching this year. Nathan and I have been finishing up the quarter round. We finished the office last week, and tonight, he’s finishing our bedroom. My most recent project was working on door knobs. After a closer look, I decided that I would try to polish the door knobs before we went ahead and replaced them. I am very glad I did. They have turned out beautifully. Some look better than others because the tarnish was extreme in places. I am much happier with these knobs than I would be with new ones because they look so interesting and because they were original to the house. They don’t make knobs that look like these 60-year-old ones anymore.

Today Nathan and I came home early to meet a roofer. He measured our roof and talked to us about our options for shingles. Nathan and I decided that it would be a wise move to proceed with the roof now (we were considering replacing my truck, which we sold Wednesday). I think were going to get another estimate from a roofer that my mom knows before we hire someone. Until then, I am trying to pick the shingles I want. I know I want architectural shingles. These are the three colors I have narrowed it down to:

"Moire Black"


"Slate Stone"

I want the attractiveness of the shingles to show, and it seems that the darker the roof, the less you can appreciate the shingles.