Saturday, March 28, 2015

Finishing Up the Den Project

We continued on with our painting and trim work.  While Pam did a lot of the primer on the walls, I started on the base board.
I didn't get out of all the painting though and we got a lot done the next day.
I didn't nail down the baseboard until after we finished the painted and got it like we wanted it.
The baseboard was pretty easy.  With the compound miter saw, it was just a question of measuring correctly.
We did as much as we could on one side of the room and got it down before.  We had some more time but we were pretty tired and with the measuring and cutting precision became more of an issue the later it got.
I quickly confused myself on a couple of cuts with the crown molding.  The back of the crown molding had two flat sides at an angle and if I did not put the correct flat side snug up against the alignment cutting edge on the saw -- it didn't fit.  I tried to figure it out just to 'get a little more done today' and it became counter productive.  So we decided to call it a day and clean up.
The next day it only took a few minutes to get the hang of the crown molding so we were making good time.  Then we had to address the area above the brick fire place.  The ceiling was not a good place to nail it and we couldn't really nail it into the fireplace.

The answer?  This turned out to be the answer:

At $2.58 a tube, it worked like a champ!  We had to brace the crown molding using some extra pieces we had laying around.
We finished of the crown molding, Pam did the caulking around it all, and then we started the clean up and moving the furniture back in.
We were pretty happy with the results as were our clients, so it was another win-win.

Thanks for joining us today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Drywalling the Den - Day 3 and 4

Once we carted out the old paneling we started with the stack of drywall and surveyed where it was going on the walls.
We had to deal with a couple of tricky items:  the interior wall adjacent to the laundry room had an I-beam across the top with short vertical blocks just sitting in place; and the sidewalls next to the neighbors were cinderblock with a 1"x3" grid where the drywall had to be attached.

Pam put up some small green painters tape to mark the studs and vertical grid so we knew where to put the drywall screws.

Days 3, and 4 were primarily focused on getting the drywall up so we could tape and mud the joints.  Progress seemed to go pretty quickly when we put up 4' x 8' sheets.  And while I was working on one side of the room, others started the taping and mudding.
It was slow going for about 1/2 of the sheets because I had to measure cut outs electrical circuits, switches and the unique areas.
Adam jumped in on a gnarly area between the door and brick chimney, while Pam and Melissa were working on other areas.
Also on Saturday and Sunday we were in the kitchen and they decided they wanted to get rid of the metal phone box that was in the middle of their kitchen wall.  It came out easy enough, but then it left a big hole in the all.

We decided to enlarge it so it went from stud to stud and then cut it out evenly so a piece of drywall would fit in nicely.
We also searched out the floor joists so we could hang their pots and pans rack.
This is the in-progress photos of the mudding and the primer and paint I got.
They picked out a chalk paint for the wall.
And it turned out well.
At the end of every day, we moved the furniture back into the room and hooked up the TV.
We had hoped to finish up by Monday or Tuesday, but the more we saw our progress, we knew a finish time toward the middle or end of the week was more realistic.  It took a long time for the mud to dry, then we had to sand and smooth it and reapply more mud where necessary.

Next time, the last few days and the finished product...

Thanks for joining us on the Roadrunner Chronicles!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Drywalling the Den - Day 1 and 2

We had the opportunity to do some work on Melissa and Adam's place and jumped at the chance.  We left on Thursday morning and thought our project would take a couple or three days.  The task at hand was to remove the painted-over paneling in their basement den and put up new drywall.
No problem - we've done that and have some Habitat experience.  But---we learned lots and we turned our 3 day project into 7 days.

First thing was the removal of baseboards and paneling.
One thing we learned was that we need to put down paper on the flooring for the project.  No matter how careful we were, by the time we removed paneling and brought in the 4' x 8' sheets of drywall, there were a few blemishes on the floor.

It was later than it should have been but we got the paper and put it down.
We started this project Thursday afternoon when we arrived.  The weather forecast called for rain on Friday, so we needed to buy the drywall and figure out a way to get it from Home Depot to the house.

Putting in on top of the CRV or their Subaru was not an option but Home Depot had a truck we rented for an hour.

We picked out some sheets that were not damaged and moved them from the stack to the carts in the store.
We picked up some drywall supplies including a 3 gallon bucket of joint compound (who needs 3 gallons? - we are only doing one room!)  

[We do!  As it turned out we used almost all of it.  Hard to imagine, but the goal is to have zero seams in the walls or spots where one can see where some taping occurred.  To do that, it takes 2 or 3 or 4 sessions of filling, sanding, smoothing, filling, sanding, smoothing (with a wet washcloth.)].

Once we got the drywall and supplies through checkout, I went and got the Home Depot truck we rented for an hour and then loaded them onto the back.  A passerby was nice enough to help load the 12 sheets.  But we couldn't take him home so the unloading was left up to us.

We parked near the curb and figured out a method to get them off the truck one at a time.
It worked well.  The hard part was carrying the sheet from the curb to the back door of their place.  It was about 50 yards.

12 trips later, we got it all inside!

I could not have done it with out this little guy.
We stacked it neatly against a wall and then took the truck back in record time.  I only had to rent the truck for an hour so it was very reasonable.

After we took the truck back we got ready to hang the new dry wall.  We'll show that next post.

Thanks for joining us today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

March is Whizzing By

Can't believe we are already into Daylight Savings Time with March Madness right around the corner.  And MLB Spring Training in full swing.

Looks like things here in Virginia Beach are looking up.  The last two days have been in the 60's which seems like summer weather almost!

Its hard to believe we went from this:
To this in about 10 days:
It was another nice day yesterday when we took Brooks for a walk around the neighborhood.
At a little over 3 weeks old, he's getting the hang of getting out and being mobile.  And he's starting to focus on objects a little farther away.  He's a pretty easy going guy most of the time and quite an amazing little person.

We've tried to balance our time over at Kelly and Jon's so we can help out and it hasn't been an every day all day thing.  Jon's back to work and Kelly is figuring out a routine and we are glad to give her a break.  I remember getting up some during those nightly feedings and it does take its toll, no matter what age.

So - speaking of whizzing-- a couple of weeks ago Brooks got me!  I've been pretty lucky with the diaper changing and he's been cooperating just fine.  But not that time.
Then a couple of days ago - he got Pam

He's had a couple of real doosies and yesterday he must have felt left out or something.

I think we have to quit getting the diapers with holes in them!
That's all this time on the Roadrunner Chronicles.  Thanks for joining us!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Roadrunner Financials - February 2015

Roadrunner Recap
We spent the entire month parked at our spot at the JEB Little Creek Amphibious Base MWR Campground.  It was freezing cold plenty of nights but we learned to keep warm and plug up drafts in the Roadrunner and had no real issues.

Good News Areas We Are Under Budget
The biggest gains (savings) in our budget continue to be on Diesel and car fuel, and in campground fees.
Biggest Expenses
Our biggest expenses were for eating:  groceries and eating out.  We had a good month on the pocket book so that was nice.

Large One Time Cost Item
Our largest purchases were for new hiking boots for Pam that were low cut ($95.39) and for a box of cigars (It's a Boy!) to commemorate Brooks arrival ($69.49).  Both were good purchases.  When it comes to feet comfort, one has to get some shoes that are sturdy and fit well.  On the cigars for Jon to pass out after Brooks arrived -- well, no questions on that one!

Monthly Average
Our monthly averages are in a good place at the moment.  Since we have been in one place for a couple of months, we are trending in the right direction.  We are very happy with our $2275 in spending and the average of $3775 over the last eight months since June of 2014.

Thanks for joining us today on the Roadrunner Chronicles!