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Category: Home improvement

It’s nice when an old house gives you a pleasant surprise for a change

… especially when that house is Ye Olde Wreck, the infamous creation of Jim Beam and Jack Daniels. Yesterday I was depressed. It was sunny and mild (in November!) so why I should have been depressed, I don’t know. Well, I do know. It involved writing. And the seemingly hopeless task of getting a vital message across to people not likely to pay attention. So the cure: quit damn writing and go hammer on something. The house’s one-and-only bedroom is this winter’s project. I was going to work on the walls, but that meant first tearing off a slab of…

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Housework

Yes, a woman’s work is never done. But sometimes it moves ahead at a satisfying pace. Here’s the weekend’s big accomplishment: The ceiling of the bedroom-to-be. It’s just under half done, since yesterday afternoon. I’d have made it farther, but I’m only good for an hour or two at a time hammering overhead. This very thin tongue-and-groove pine isn’t meant for ceilings; it’s for walls and wainscotings. But it’s working fine. Before I committed to putting it on the bedroom ceiling, I nailed a few pieces up on the ceiling of the screenporch where it held up well for a…

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Today

The clock says it’s 7:22, but the clock lies. Or my body does. I wish all to heck that governments would quit trying to pretend they can add or subtract time from the day. The “fall back” change is usually the easier of the two, but today the sky is leaden, there’s no warmth in the air, and the rain will be settling in any moment. I’m still lying slug-a-bed and would happily remain that way were it not for Ava and the cat staring so accusingly. With the aid of a space heater I’ve managed to get my sleeping…

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In the gutter

The weather gods deigned to bestow kindness this week. It’s summer again! Well, until tonight. But hey, three days of beautiful; I’ll take it. Mostly I used the break to (nearly) complete the last of the pre-rainfall projects. Yesterday — gutters. Okay, one 16-foot span of gutter (with corner) and one downspout, but that took me all day. I’m using Repla-K vinyl DIY gutters* from the lumberyard, which are pretty good. They’re reasonably attractive. They’re affordable. I can install them myself. They do the job (as attested by the other small span of gutter I put up last fall). And…

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A Monday ramble

Actually, not so much rambling as sitting indoors under a tornado warning. The current twister probably won’t come near my neighborhood, but we have about 30 more hours of unsettled weather, so who knows what we might eventually see? And here I thought The Wandering Monk was joking when he said if a tornado struck the NW corner of the screen porch would be the safest place in the house. I may have to find out. —– Quite to my surprise, we are in the midst of National Unmarried and Singles Week. I had no idea, did you? How did…

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The rainy season returns

An hour or two from now, the skies are scheduled to open. They’ve been closed by clouds the last two days, and when they open this time it won’t be to reveal summer blue. We’re looking at a week of rain. Not Harvey rain, not Irma rain, but typical of this part of the world; once the faucet’s on, it doesn’t care to stop. I am SO not ready for this. I’ve been dashing-dashing-dashing to get the place ready for the wet. For a while I was roaring with energy. But my oomph ran out before the projects and cleanup…

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Happiness is another miraculously wonderful house project (mostly) done and ready to enjoy

The Wandering Monk visited the blog the other day. He says there aren’t enough pictures. So here you go. Not long ago, I gave you the tale of the west wall. Now here’s the north wall and how we (but as always, mostly the Monk) solved the Dreaded Drainage problems and created beauty. Few words, many pictures. Reduced out of mercy. Click to embiggenate. And enjoy! 2013 … 2015. After Handyman Mike’s dreadfully botched bathroom remodel. My heart sank. This photo also gives you an idea of the way the back of the house was sunk into the bottom of…

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You load 3.34 tons and whadda ya get?

Tired. Sore. And whacked out to the point your where muscles start quivering. That’s what you get if you’re me and not some muscular 20-year-old guy who works on construction sites all day. Three-point-three-four tons. That’s the weight of 2.2+ yards of 7/8-inch concrete aggregate rock (which I’m not using for concrete aggregate, but as the base of the patio/cure for drainage problems). I still have a bit more of that to move, which is why no pix yet. But the guy with the handy-dandy mini-dump truck also hauled out a load of 3/4-minus driveway rock. With the driveway rock…

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The joy of hard work

Well, maybe not joy, exactly. Maybe not even close. Yeah, not even. But I’ve been working outside for the last several days, driven by the pleasant September weather and the urgent understanding that this ain’t gonna last. Despite the sweat dripping into my eyes and the dirt on my hands and knees, it’s satisfying. I’ve shoveled and raked and poisoned and hammered. I’ve painted, hauled, trimmed, swept, pounded, wheelbarrowed, and just this afternoon was able to lay down plastic sheeting and landscape cloth behind the house where The Wandering Monk and I did our redneck earth moving last week. Tomorrow…

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Sorry for the silence and good luck Floridians and beyond

Sorry for the lack of blogitude. I’ve been minioning. Then when The Wandering Monk lost energy this afternoon, I sent him home and took over the last bits of earth moving myself. I’m beat; but it’s looking good. All that remains before I can cross that project off the summer’s list is for me to do a touch of final leveling (after spraying the area down this evening and seeing where the water tended to pool), then lay down plastic, then find somebody to bring in gravel that I can rake around that 12 x 24-foot nice, FLAT area. Easy-peasy.…

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