Saturday, December 20, 2014

Getting to work...

...on the "new" house... I hope.

Monday, July 7, 2014

A new life

Last night I got to hang out in the bungalow with its new resident, an old friend of mine. She and her family have moved in and begun making themselves at home.

I was a little afraid it would be weird-- remembering that it's not mine (I mean, it is, but it's not, ya know?), seeing all their stuff in there, arranged differently...

But it wasn't. It was awesome. I had such a good time and loved every minute of seeing the house settling into its new life with a new family.

I still don't understand how people can live in new construction.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

A long, long, LONG time coming

The kitchen. This kitchen.

This was the kitchen we bought.

Then it was a big pile of plaster and lathe. And over the years we added and subtracted things. The cabinet doors were falling apart and falling on my head. They weren't usable or safe anymore.

Over the last couple of weeks, I've been putting a lovely coat of satin water-based poly on the new doors from

Then I took our old drawers, sanded the faces, and polyed them with the same finish.

Lower left is original; lower right is sanded; top is one coat of poly.

And today, we put it all together. Be still my heart.

Ok. Yes, there's still painter's tape on the window, and we still have some backsplash work to do. But damn. I think they turned out beautifully.

We also finally, FINALLY, had the last inspection on the insurance settlement from 2008. We may take a while to get where we're going, but we get there eventually.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The big push

This week is really this summer's big push on the house.

We've managed to make a lot of headway, but there is more to do...

Adam put in more of the base shoe. I finished the floors. Actually, I have one or two more coats of poly left to go on the kitchen, but that shouldn't take long. 

I put 3 coats of poly on the kitchen cabinets. And then theses came today. Oooooooh...

They'll get a few coats of poly and maybe some hardware. Haven't decided yet if they need knobs or not. For the drawer fronts, I'm currently just sanding and poly-ing them, but they may need replacing as well on down the line

I spent a good part of Saturday painting trim on the front of the house. I got started on the white/ivory and I think you can already see an improvement. 

I also painted a few more backsplash panels to complete that side of the kitchen. 

Garage roof repair happened today; hopefully garage window repair will happen tomorrow.

We have been very, very busy. 

It's been interesting to fall in love with the house all over again. The renters are moving in things while we finish up, and I thought it might be weird, but I really am enjoying seeing their curtains and furniture and hear their ideas. I truly do think houses have their own lives and it's nice seeing this one getting some new attention from this next phase in its existence. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Falling in love all over again

I chose one bedroom and the hallway to do first, sort of as a test to make sure the floors weren't going to look horrible with a coat of SealCoat.

Nope. They reminded me why I love shellac, why I love antique heart pine, why I love that house, and why I loved doing this work way back when.

We burned out trying to live in the house and finish the remodel at the same time. And the new house is great. But a lot of it is not our style and we still have boxes and clutter and trash all over the place. The bungalow is cozy and comfortable and warm.

Five more rooms to go and a couple coats of poly. I really do hope the bungalow's next family is able to enjoy it.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Floors all over again...

Well, not ALL over again.

It's been almost 6 1/2 years since we sanded them down to bare wood and refinished them completely.

To rehash a picture from the previous post, you can see where furniture was and wasn't:

And there are going to be areas where things like the feet of the bed wore away the top coat.

I'm going to do one bedroom and the hallway as a test case for adding a coat of SealCoat and more poly since they are not "public" areas of the house and the bedroom will have plenty of furniture, I'm guessing.

Today I swept, vacuumed, and mopped with a mild vinegar solution.

You can already see that when wet, the difference is not so high contrast (obviously this is a bit blotchy with uneven drying, but you get my drift).

There are some trouble spots where grain is raised and a bit of dirt has settled. I'm going to try sanding those areas a bit more than just a scuff.

I'll let this dry overnight and get back to it in the morning. I'm feeling better about it over all.

Now if you'll excuse me, I have a chicken to put on the grill...

Thursday, May 22, 2014

The Saga of Shellac

We were so hell bent on shellac for the floors. And they really were gorgeous, were they not?

Five years of 5 big dogs and a bunch of clumsy people has taken its toll on them. Nothing horrible, just wear and tear. 

(Can you guess where the bed was?)

As you can see, there's still all that rich heart, but the luster is gone. So since we've worn some of the poly down to shellac, we decided we'd do best to put down a coat of dewaxed SealCoat as a bonding agent (remember, most shellac has wax in it, and poly and wax do not get along). However now, no one carries SealCoat anymore. Like no one. It has to be ordered online. And the online reviews all complain about this, so it's not an Arkansas problem. Adam's response was, "So what the hell are people supposed to do?"

Not do the ridiculous shit we did in the first place.

Regardless, I ordered 6 quarts of it on Amazon. It was supposed to arrive today, but was damaged in shipping, so we'll see when it gets here.

And then I'm thinking three (?) coats of water-based poly. Maybe Varathane's heavy traffic version.

If only we could have just done this like everyone else...