Monday, March 26, 2012

MIA Drywaller

Before I chat about my house whoas, this is what I've been up to. Quilting! I have also been stitching some but I forgot to pop Freddie into my bag this morning so I could not take a photo of the progress. Above is a quilt top I started a couple of weeks ago. The center is a cheater panel and my sister and I though we could use it to practice centering stored motifs from the computerized long-arm quilter. The rest of it was a snap. I'm more used to smaller blocks and this one zoomed along.

I did this cute little quilt top yesterday. It's smallish, maybe three feet by two feet. It will look nice on my dining room table. I'll most likely to do an allover quilted pattern on it.

And here is the last quilt top I finished up over the weekend. It's a Twister pattern and I have to say I love the fabric hate the quilt pattern. This is the only sort of quilt my sister does these days. Quick, easy and quick. :-) I generally don't like to do quilts that don't offer up some sort of challenge but I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. I used Fa, La, La, La by French General. French General is making my favorite quilting fabrics these days. When I was finished I was really glad I didn't buy all the Twister books and templates and just borrowed them. The finished quilt will look nice however on my couch at Christmas time or maybe even on the table if I quilt it small enough and use a very thin batting.

Now onto the house trouble. My drywaller said on March 18th that he would be finished with the drywalling, taping and priming by last Thursday (the 22nd). I haven't seen him since that day. I seem to recall him saying he was going on vacation this week so I'm assuming he is out of town until next week. How irresponsible of him. I don't have much recall however as my brother in law hired him and is paying the bill. I'm so pissed because I scrambled like crazy over the past week to get everything in place for me to paint the room over the past weekend and put down the new sub floor because I bought this:

550 square feet of the sexist 5 inch wide, hand scraped hardwood floor in the universe. I bought enough for half of my house - I'm going to start to save for the other half. I got it at Lumber Liquidators and they have had this floor for years now so I know I'll be able to get more next year. I bought enough this time to do all my bedrooms and hallway and still have some left over so I can mix it into what I'll buy next year as I'm sure the die lots will change a bit.

But the biggest disappointment of not having my bedroom ready to paint last weekend is my brother said he would teach me how to lay the floor this week while he is on vacation - we were planning on Thursday. But the time the room is ready for the floor (first weekend in April hopefully) my brother will be back at work so I don't know now when the floor will go down. I'm handy but I really want to have guidance for the first room I do. And I need all his power tools. :-) I bought the floor nailer already - I didn't know anyone who owned one and they are $35.00 bucks a day to rent from Home Depot. I found a new one on eBay for $100.00. So I'm ahead and I can sell it when I'm done with the entire house sometime next year.

I'm so bummed. I was planning on moving into my bedroom this coming weekend and now I'll have to wait for who knows how long. The house is a mess with everything that got pulled out of the bedroom and there 550 square feet of flooring in my living room. Plus all the light fixtures, cans of paint and window treatments that I had to buy. And not to mention the dust from all the work being done. I dust and vacuum and it just seems to get dirty right away again.

Monday, March 12, 2012


Here is the contents of my bedroom and half bath. When the guy who is doing the work said we needed a garbage bin I didn't believe him. Sure am glad I listened now! It's full!

I'm so glad I didn't listen to the people who were saying I didn't need to do this. The smell of mold and mildew in the bin is unreal. The smell would have never left the house. And we discovered I had NO insulation in the room! I'm sure it's the same throughout the house. New dry wall next. My guys aren't coming back until Thursday but they should be done by mid-next week. I'm going to pick out hardwood floors this week sometime. I'd like to buy enough for all three bedrooms and hall as I want the entire house to match. So hopefully by the first weekend in April I'll be done with the walls and floor and then I can move onto the painting and trim work. I'm going to ignore the bathroom for the present time. I want to get in the bedroom first and then work on the bath when time allows. I have the tile already as I purchased enough when I bought the tile for my main bath last fall. The plan is to put in a new pedestal sink and new matching toilet with a six foot high white/cream wainscoting throughout. It's going to look great and I'm so happy I've finally started.

My other project over the weekend.

I should have taken a before photo because this doesn't start to show how much work I did. This is what I call the wayback. It's an area of my yard behind the garage and shed. Last spring in order for FHA to approve my mortgage I had to do a ton of repairs on a house I didn't even own. I took the chance and as you know it worked out - I got the house. One of the tasks was repairing the stockade fence that surrounded the property. However when I got there to do the work it was obvious that the fence could not be repaired as it was falling down. I got permission from the owner and FHA to just remove the fence rather than spend money to try to fix it (it would have been replacing rather than fixing). It was in such bad shape that it only took about an hour to remove 60/70 feet (I left one side up as it wasn't in such bad shape and we replaced boards and such). But I didn't want to take the time or spent the money to have it removed so I put all the sections and the 4x4 supports in the wayback planning to deal with it at another point in time. So fast forward nine months of not being to particular when I put all my lawn detritus and trash back there. Well the weather so nice this past weekend I figured it was finally "another point in time". :-) And I also thought I have that big old bin in the front of the house that will never be filled so why not start the work and put the fencing in the bin? Well it was obvious within an hour of the demo starting in the house that there would be no room in the bin for all the sections of fencing so I had to break it down. So 12 or so hours later the sections of fencing are all broken down in to pieces that can be burned or tossed little by little into the trash (I can burn wood where I live). But I'm going to try to get as many of the support 4x4s into the bin still. There should be room for most of them. Of course I have to get them from the back all the way to the front. And I only have the bin for seven more days. That two or three posts a day. :-) So after two days of solid sawing, breaking, ripping and raking I got back a huge area of lawn. So the plan is to get rid of as much as I can so I can plant grass in April and maybe put in some raised veggie beds.

It was only until much later Sunday evening that it occurred to me that I could have paid someone to haul all the stuff away. I did a little a research on Angie's List and figured it would have only cost me around $100 to $120 bucks. Bummer - I would totally have paid the price - and it would be done. But I know have that knowledge for the next big (read huge and impossible for me) task in the backyard. Taking down the shed. It's attached to the back of the garage and it's 10 x 20 feet. I'll never use it and I just want it gone as I want the lawn back. But it's a real room with a shingled roof, wood siding and electricity. I'm estimating at least $1,200.


Friday, March 09, 2012

a finished bird

Frederick has a head and finished body! While not totally pleased with his progress I did manage to stitch at least six hours over the past week. Which is pretty good these days. I'd like to get in at least double that amount. Maybe soon. :-)

This is the first quilt finished with the long arm machine! I've had this top around for several years now and it's finally complete. It's a Ricky Tims' design from a book called Convergence Quilts. I went through a phase a couple of years ago where I felt I needed to do stuff out of my comfort zone. And everything about this is out of my comfort zone! The style, the colors, everything! I had to do a freehand meander since the autobot on the long arm isn't working. My sister had to take a few parts in for service so no more quilting for a couple of weeks. Hopefully we will be able to get some of the advanced functions working at that point. Her long arm is a totally automated machine. We should be able to just select a quilt design and tell the machine to go. While I want to learn how to do it all freehand, until that time comes it will be nice must to hit go and watch it work. :-) Since I have a backlog of at least 20 tops and my sister has about the same amount, I'm looking forward to getting caught up. All for the price of batting and thread. No more paying someone else to finish my work! And I'll have total control which is the number one thing I hated about sending my quilt top to be finished by someone else. While I really liked the work my quilters did, not having any say in what they did was frustrating.

Have a great weekend! I'm finally starting on the bedroom tomorrow. Yeah! Now I need to find an extra thousand dollars for my hardwood floor. :-( That's going to be tough right now.

Thursday, March 01, 2012

lots of projects

I've been making good progress on Frederick. Thanks for all the comments regarding putting both pieces on the same linen. I wasn't sure it was a right way to go but I'm happy with it. I didn't even notice that both birds are facing the same way. I'll have to put something nice next to them for them to look at. :-)

Last weekend I started all sorts of little projects. Here is my first penny ever! I'm making a small penny rug for my table. It's going to be fun and quick. I want to make one for Easter also so this dark colored one might take a back seat if I manage to get some pastel colored wool in the next couple of weeks. I also started a quilt top and it's almost finished. But I'll post the finis rather than an in progress shot. Just a couple of hours to go on it before it's complete. It will be one of the first that I put on my sister's long arm.

Finally a shoot of my amaryllis! I put this baby into water in November and it's finally blooming! I had no idea they took so long.

Until next time!