instant gramming

November 25, 2007

Weekend Warriors

"Holy F balls." That's how C suggested I start this entry. I agree that this phrase sums our exasperation at our current situation. We had slept in the morning after Thanksgiving and were brainstorming all the wonderfully relaxing things we could fit in to our three extra days of holiday vacation: "Let's sleep in and wash my car windows;" "let's watch football and go shopping;" "let's clean the house." Somehow the conversation turned to dream house renovations. C asked me what I would do to change the kitchen. We then started talking about knocking out walls around the house. In an attempt to reign ourselves in, I mentioned that if we were going to do anything, we should pick a needed change--like removing this dirty carpet. A blink later and C was on her knees pulling carpet back to appraise the hardwood floors. I think she was as excited as I when we realized the floors were probably in great condition throughout. By noon we had removed all the carpet and padding in the hallway. We went to lunch and wrote down our strategy for refinishing our hardwood floors. However, our flowchart involved a lot less steps than what we've done so far. It is late on Sunday morning and we are at Panera for the third time this weekend. Our refrigerator and oven are conveniently blocked by our couch and a few bookcases. So that is why we ate Wendy's last night.


I'm finishing up this post Monday morning. C is at home finishing up the second coat of stain in the living room and hallway. This project has involved renting (for 24 hours) an electrical floor sander and 3 passes over approximately 900 square feet with successively finer sanding pads; scrupulous vacuuming; tack-cloth-ing; and now TWO coats of noxious wood stain (English Chestnut!). That is, not to mention dismantling our home and packing our possessions into the basement and garage. Soon we will be polyurethane-ing. Did I mention that we overlooked the fact that 40 degree temperatures and rainy weather is really slowing down our progress? Well, the floors look gorgeous so far and pictures will be up soon.


I want to mention that this project started on "Black Friday"--the day after Thanksgiving--the largest shopping day of the year, and also designated as "Buy Nothing Day" by radical "Jammers and Cultural Creatives" across the developed world. I'm proud to say, in the spirit of B.N.D., C and I rented a tool to work together to improve our house. We didn't have to wade through crowds of sale-hungered mall shoppers to exchange money for services, improve our quality of life, and support the economy. We also improved the value of our house, which might, in a small way, improve the value of our neighborhood. The cynic would remind us that we did buy some tools (a sanding block, a broom handle...) that will remain in our possession, that we quickly went through some inexpensive latex gloves, and that we created a lot of trash. I will remind the cynic that we saved some beautiful wood floors, original to the house (50 years old!), and that carpet should never have been put into the house in the first place. Our house will be cleaner, contain less allergens, and be easier to clean, and our knowledge and independence is increased. Remember the three R's: Reduce, Reuse, Refinish...?

(All my love to C, my beautiful wife, who was a powerhouse this weekend and this morning. She is an incredibly hard worker and inspires me constantly. She was in her element from the point of ripping out the carpet. C, I know this project has been testing your patience, and the fast food we've been fueling up on is killing us slowly, but everything looks great and I am loving you more and more every second. When this project is finished, hopefully I'll make it up to you, big time.)

1 comment:

  1. David & Carlyn-

    Wow! I am so impressed, I can't wait to come and see the finished product. English Chestnut - a good choice! Your dedication to refurbishing your house is an inspiration, let the good times roll..