Thursday, September 26, 2013

Redemption... almost

There has been progress in the basement this week, every day.  The corrections I wanted were made, the ceiling was insulated (making it seem almost dead down there, with the lack of sound) and they started putting up the drywall today.

There is a big beam that hangs overhead of where my desk will be.  I don't like it - it blocks the window - but I never considered that it could be removed.  The contractor has also disliked it from day one.  He's complained about it a number of times, but I never expected him to do anything about it.

Yesterday, he surprised me by arriving with both an engineer and the city building inspector to discuss removing the beam.  Much measuring and mumbling occurred, and they left with the general understanding that the beam could go - they'd just need official signoff from the building inspector.  Today, they arrived with cheers of "The Beam is Going to Go!", and I heard sawing and hammering start up right away.  Shortly after that, his phone rang, the hammering stopped and the contractor called me downstairs.   Sadly, the beam has to stay.  The inspector had signed off on the removal of the beam, if the room was 16 ' wide, but they remeasured one last time before they pulled it out and discovered that the room is 18' wide.

There are options to beef up the joists that will mean the beam can come out, but that would cost a lot of money.  Since I was satisfied to keep it a week ago, I decided to keep the money and live with the beam.

Oh well.

This is what the room looked like when they went home today.  Suddenly, it seems a lot smaller, but it'll stretch out once the furniture, etc is in place.

They'll be back tomorrow to finish the drywalling.  Mudding and taping is next week, and then it's over to me to paint before the floor goes in.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Slow progress

I left town last week with a long to-do list for the contractor.  He was quite sure that he could get it all done plus do the drywalling, but I was adamant that drywalling didn't start until I gave the go-head.  It was a wee bit of a battle, as he seemed to think my being away was a good opportunity to motor ahead and that my not letting him drywall was micromanaging.

Unfortunately, my instincts were right.  I came home to see that they'd missed doing about 5 jobs that would have been covered over if they drywalled before I got back, and they'd have had to rip it all out.    There are a few silly things, that I shouldn't have had to add to the list in the first place... making the closet door opening the size of a standard door from the big box stores... moving the vacuum outlet to outside of the closet... And, a few requests that have been long standing but so far unaddressed, like lowering electrical outlets that had stickers on them stating the proper heights (that they vapour barriered over them, stickers and all!!).

So, the contractor and his team will be returning on Monday to do what should have been done long ago, so that we can finally get the place inspected and then close it up.  He and I are going to have a talk soon about lighting a fire under this project.  I am starting to run out of patience, and I want to start seeing workers here every day towards that end.

Some shots of the progress they have made...

This is the before of the stairwell

This is how it looks from the top looking down

And this is how it looks from the bottom looking towards the stairs
(I didn't think to take a before picture from this view)

Sadly, that's it.  There is no other progress to show you.

Looking at it now, I think that nook under the stairs would make a great built-in bench or day bed for reading.  Unfortunately, I need that area for storage.  I can't decide yet how I want it done (cupboards, drawers, or just a door so things can be tossed in), so he'll be drywalling over it for now.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Back at it

Renos on the basement are set to start again, after the city finally deigned to give us the permit.  It was kind of frustrating to have a three week delay over something that had never changed about the house, and shouldn't have been an issue in the first place.  (You have to have windows that are big enough to escape through in basement bedrooms, but we are not building a bedroom.  This will be an office/rec room with two large-ish windows... kind of hard to explain what they were thinking.)  Anyway, we should be back on track again on Monday.

I'll be heading out of town for a bit with Lewis, and Tallulah and Winter will be moving over to my parent's place until I'm back.  Winter tends to get a wee bit curious around the men working, and can get in the way.  I also don't want another repeat of the chalk incident.

Winter walked through and lay down in the middle of a chalk line while they were framing the walls last month.  His feet, tummy and whole back end turned red... rather horrifying for the first few seconds that I saw him, until I realized what must have happened.

Oops - think I posted this before.  Oh well, It's probably worth a re-post

This is what he looked like a week later.

A month later, he is pretty much the same, only maybe a wee bit whiter.  I'm guessing the hair will fall out before he is white again.  Luckily for him, he sheds buckets every day.

Women have paid hundreds for a lasting red hair colour.  If only they knew about red construction chalk.

Monday, September 9, 2013


Lewis P. Wellington is reaching his 5th month on Wednesday.  He's got missing teeth, loose teeth and a few chew marks where they don't belong to show for the new replacements that are coming in.  Even so, he's a keeper.

He's housetrained now, and knows his rudimentary commands.  He can sit, lie down and come to me when I call.  I haven't worked on "stay", so I won't judge him that he can't do that.  He can, however, do an excellent imitation of a zombie when the mood strikes him. He stands on his hind legs, lifts his front legs up over his head and growls as he walks towards me- it's terrifying, I tell you.

Today I introduced the collar... again.  We've tried them off and on, almost from day one, but he doesn't like them.  Instead, I use a vest-style harness to take him for walks.  However, he'll be coming with me soon to BC to visit my sister and her boys, and he needs tags for that.  So, the collar is back on.  The weight must be oppressive, because he lies down for hours with his chin flat on the floor until I take it off.

He's gravity challenged... not that gravity won't hold him down, but in that he's seemingly unaware of it.  He climbs, jumps, dives and rolls as though he's got no concept of it, or fear of landing.

This week, after what seemed like forever, he became a lap dog and started to ask to lie on my lap.  Finally, after almost six weeks, I get to sit down for more than 2 minutes and relax.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Big Ocean, Small Pond

It's kind of funny how well I've adjusted to things, after the breakup.  I haven't been in a tonne of relationships, but usually there's a period of time after one ends before I want to even consider looking for another one... this period has lasted from a few months up to a few years in the past.  This time, there was no mourning period.  It's too bad that it didn't work out, but looking back, I think I knew we would have a limited amount of time together before it came to an end.

The truth is, I waited a month before dipping my toes back in the pool out of respect for him.  I was pretty much ready to start looking right away.  I liked being part of a pair, and having a partner.  If what we had, which was pretty good, was what relationships are like with the wrong guy, then I can only imagine it'd be even better with the right one.  I want that.

Long story short, I signed up on a new website a while back.  This one sends you a list of your matches every day.  The very first list that I received, I scrolled down to find that -once again- I'd been matched with him.