Monthly Archives: May 2010

Sheetrock Inspection Today @ 3:30

We are so ready to be done with this. And yet, we are only about half way.

Eating. This has been touch and go. Well, we eat daily, but what we put into our mouths can be kind of sketchy. Some days we keep it simple and unsatisfying. Ice cream, pretzels, yogurt, Primal Strips, blueberries. Some days we cook. Husband has been into making tofu and broccoli in broth with lots of herbs from our garden. My gourmet fare has mostly been pasta mixed with chunks of mozzarella, kalamata olives and grape tomatoes. Yesteday, I packed a salad for my husband’s lunch so I wanted to make up for that with his dinner.

My son would like me to make granola. He wants me to fry doughnuts. Croissants, fresh from the oven. My daughter wants lasagna. Pizza. Palak paneer. I would delight in cooking anything in a functional setting. Husband would like stuff that is not too oily, not too salty.

Which brings us to yesterday’s supper.

I had a vision.

The vision did not manifest.

All of our cooking takes place outside on a camp stove perched atop a card table. A card table with wobbly legs. One day while boiling pasta, the propane canister ran out. The sink set-up is on the other side of the house and the fridge is inside, relatively close to the camp stove.

I wanted to make fried potatoes, quinoa, breaded tofu and asparagus. And I did. Quinoa is well liked by the kids but not by the husband but nevertheless, it is rather super-foodish and we all need some nutrition right about now. The tofu breading did not fare well, the potatoes sogged after cooling, the quinoa was sticky and the asparagus, well, I think they were okay. My husband told me it was over ambitious for the facility but he really did appreciate the sentiment. I found the meal very satisfying but will be happier and healthier when I have more control over our family’s diet.

Today is sheetrock inspection (lot of inspections, no?). Hopefully the weekend will have some guys here mudding. Hit Sherwin Williams today and bought paint (Alabaster on ceiling, Steamed Milk on walls…yes, white and white). Very exhausted from laying in bed and being pregnant.

Hope everyone has a great Memorial Day Weekend. Rest up…cabinets will arrive Tuesday!

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Mechanical

Yesterday was our mechanical inspection. Thanks to KD and Chris, we passed with flying colors. In the afternoon they got started on the windows. By the time the guys left in the evening, one window was installed. It was terrible.

KD wasn’t here; just Chris (who was back and forth to Lowe’s ordering stuff), Vrindy and Lotus. Because our house is concrete block and because it has done quite a bit of settling since 1962, the windows were totally not plumb. Like, not in the least. Parallelogram accurately describes the space. This presented challenges. Challenges that could only be met with a grinder.

In comparison to having our cinder block walls ground to level, the tear out of the walls was spic and span spotless. Concrete dust is a messy, messy airborne crapxin that I hope you never, ever have to inhale like our dear construction guys. Also, and I feel bad noting this but cannot help but do so since it is substantially ugh-inducing–our shoe rack (shoes included, inside and out) is absolutely coated in the dust.

Windows. I wanted aluminum mill finish. You know, industrial metal looking, much like we had before, but not crappy jalousie crap crap. When price engineering the windows, we opted for sliders. In plain English: cheaper than single hung. There is a single hung or two where the opening is too narrow to accommodate a slider.

The sad thing about it, and this is sad only in the scope of my kitchen remodel, definitely not in a Haitian earthquake we have real troubles over here kind of way, but the sad thing about it nevertheless is that the sliders have hideous black weatherstripping on the outside that is not as prominent on the single hungs. Live and learn, live and learn.

Our huge triple light window was ordered with obscured glass because I don’t want to sit in our new dining room and gaze out at our dilapidated shed. No, I don’t. Admittedly, it looks a little odd, but it allows light to come in and curtains will surely dress it up a bit.

After the guys got the dining room and kitchen windows in, they started sheetrocking the ceiling. It is unknown when they will do the windows in the rest of the house, but I am actually not so eager to engage with the dust.

Cabinets. They are somewhere waiting to be delivered but we are not ready to receive them yet. The cabinets must be okayed for delivery on a Thursday in order to be delivered on a Tuesday. And they are only delivered on Tuesdays! Space won’t be ready for them this Tuesday. First the sheetrock needs to go in, then the mudding, then paint then floor.

Yawn.

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Weekend Work

These pics are, as usual, old news. Chris spent a lot of time wiring the rooms over the weekend, so the least I could do was take a lot of pics. And what is the point of taking them if I have nowhere to post them?

Here you can see all the wiring and plumbing, plus the enlarged return duct that will be going into the newly built coat closet/pantry overfill.

Okay, Vrindy and KD are outside my bedroom windows measuring while I lay in bed convalescing. It’s a little awkward but this week my baby is the size of a blueberry. Who knew how exhausting growing a blueberry could be!

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Desperate for Dairy

Stolen photo of mascarpone.

At night I lay in bed atop heathered flannel sheets, my stomach churning and my eyes rolled back in my head. I feel like death even though it is life–the multiplication of tiny cells inside me– that ruins my late afternoons and thoroughly sickens me by evening.

It is at those times I’ve taken up inhaling in long draws of air the scent of gardenias soaking in a Japanese tea cup of water at my bed side. It is at those times I focus on the pure whiteness of the petals, the buttery yellow centers, and try to distract myself with sensations of flavor. Like a demitasse of cream, the flower petals rise up in stiff whipped peaks and I can’t resist the temptation imagining foods fatty and whipped.

Butter and heavy cream and mascarpone and hung yogurt. All beaten and whipped together, combined in different ratios, piped into crispy fried pastries or served warm paired with the simplest and nakedest of steamed vegetables. A teaspoon of salt or a quarter cup of sugar, shavings of chocolate or choppings of tarragon. I want it. Smooth and rich and absolutely satisfying. These are the flavors that carry me off to bed, that alkalize the foul gastric taste in my mouth, rendering my palate cleansed and ready for the meal I will devour once this late afternoon-into the evening variety of morning sickness leaves me.

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Lowe’s Patio Furniture. That Looks Good.

I so had to pause and raise my camera when I saw these garden seats for sale at Lowe’s. I’ve never seen patio pieces at Lowe’s that I would want to be seen sitting in, but these colorful metal forms have put that sentiment to rest. This stuff is so cute!

Colors are lovable and actually match my kitchen remodel. Aesthetic is retro. Price is right. Only problem is, aside from the fact that we are not using our loan money to buy patio seating, the chairs are not very comfy. This minor problem could be solved by enlisting the help of some outdoor, outdated fabric covered cushions. But it could prove a risky move.

If you are more concerned about fashion over function, these are worth checking out. In person. Just remain standing.

Patio furniture @ Lowe's. This garden glider is just under $100. Available in blue, green or yellow.

The chairs are just $38.

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My Big Sink Reveal!

Finally, my sink has arrived! We didn’t even get a warning call, the ABF driver just showed up. From Hackensack to South Bend to Alachua, this soapstone sink made it here in one piece. Whew.

ABF Delivery. The funny thing is, this man recalls being the driver for our stuff when we moved, almost 2 years ago, down from PA.

The packing slip listed the crated sink at 700 lbs.

Uphill.

Stuck.

Chris, “It’s like an ancient Egyptian artifact.” LOL! That pretty much captures the buzz of excitement we all felt moving/unveiling this tomb.

Chris doing the honors.

I was a little nervous about actually seeing the sink since I was not too familiar with the appearance of Belvedere. It is the hardest soapstone out there, due, I guess, to a significantly lower talc content than traditional soapstones like Santa Rita. Did I mention how much I loved the soft gray of the Barocca soapstone? I did, a few posts back. Well, I knew Belvedere would not have much in common, appearance-wise, with Barocca, so I held my breath as it was uncrated….

Removing the packing materials.

Ahhhh. Not bad. Not bad at all. It will go nicely with the marble tops and white cabs. The gray is considerably darker but I didn’t sense any of the green tones that become apparent when oiled. It will be interesting to see how the color of the interior of the sink changes as it is used. The outside apron should remain gray and white marshmallow swirled.

The Big Sink Reveal.

Soapstone sink, epoxied seam.

Okay. I know everyone interested in stone, be it marble or soapstone or granite, is obsessed with seams. Seams don’t bother me. With our Cobra Soapstone countertops, the seams were imperceptibly noticeable since, once oiled, the tops were black and the epoxy was black. Here, I think the seam lines are very slight and will be covered by the countertop overhang anywho.

I am loving all the mottled white in the Belvedere soapstone.

Bowl divider.

The sink doesn’t look that incredibly big to me. I mean, when I was making plans for 60″ of sink, it was met with some very negative reactions by some people. Weird, huh, considering I wasn’t installing it in their kitchen. Sixty inches looks like a great size to me and I love the double bowl design, by yours truly, of course.

Upon opening the crate I was a bit disappointed by the sink depth, designed again by yours truly. I specified 9 and 3/4 inches as the depth and that is what I got (with an interior measure of 8.5″ deep). But stretched out over 60″, it just didn’t look substantial to me. I think the outside apron will look good, though. Our last sink was so damn deep (11″) and I loved it although I know Babu didn’t and I wanted to take that into consideration when designing this sink.

I referenced the Porcher London–our dish sink that we had in our old kitch and purchased again, this time 30″ wide, for the new one. That’s where I stole the sink depth measurements from. So although it looks a bit petite to me now, I am confident it will feel good upon install. The faucets will be mounted 8″ above countertop height, so there should be plenty of room for serious pot scrubbing.

Alright. I am definitely up past my nap time. ZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzzzzzXOXOX.

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Mechanical

Chris worked all weekend and even KD was here yesterday. Maybe Vrindy was here, too. I don’t know since I was sequestered to my quarters. KD and Chris are at it again today and the mechanical inspection will be tomorrow. After that, it’s on to window replacements, sheetrocking and floors.

Chris told us today that he used over 2,000 feet of that attractive yellow wire for our kitchen. The average new house he builds uses 3,000.

Gardenia Bouquet--nothing to do with this post.

Spool

Wiring

Circuit box. It is now completely full of new wiring.

Tools at rest.

Porch Light

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