Monday, June 16, 2014

Glad that's over with: Our flooring escapade

You ever just dread something SO bad that you're like, "oh Lord, when I wake up, it's on."  It's like you want to skip the day and have someone else just take care of everything and call you when it's all done.  Well, I knew that we would probably run late and loud so I spent a good deal of Friday not only preparing what we would all eat on Saturday but made some bribe baskets for the neighbors with cookies in them. 

Our new Southern neighbors were very appreciative and she gave me a hug  I told her I was sorry and after how long it went, I probably owe them a full course dinner.  We tried to give one to the other neighbor but she didn't answer her door and ended up not even being home this weekend so MAJOR score there because if there would be anyone to retaliate for noise, it would be her.  We lucked out big time on that one!

Friday night, we moved all of our big furniture including two big ass armoires into the garage with our forearm forklift lifting and moving straps.  (affiliate link)  Jennifer B, here's your review...we wouldn't have been able to do it easily without them.  I will admit, they're more wrist straps given the height of our armoires, but I guess they have extension straps so we may get those.  But if you've only got two people available for moving and all of your friends are suddenly "busy" when you need to move, I wouldn't do any heavy lifting without these babies!  Thumbs up!

Our friend who was doing the install came over to do some prep.  This included removing our carpet (though I admit I was kind of bummed we didn't get to take it out.  I wanted to do that but he did it much faster than we probably would've been able to).  When he looked at getting the laminate off, it revealed our old floor, our very first DIY job...

The Mr and my uncle heat gunned the original squares the builders laid and they put those in the foyer and kitchen.  We had it for about half the time we lived here and it was kind of sweet and sad seeing it again.  We couldn't think of all the times our pup begged on those floors as I was whipping up dinner.  We were so proud of it.  We decided after he left, that we would take up the laminate and I admit, I love demo.  There's a certain satisfaction you get jamming a wonder bar under a slat and busting that baby out.  It was also neat seeing what our kitchen remodel would look like with our old floor.

It was like a time warp when we woke up the next day and saw that staring at us at the bottom of the stairs.  I admit, I kinda miss it...a little.  When the carpet was pulled up we were reminded of the great ceiling flood of 2010 with a huge water spot.

We both remember being in the place when there was 6" of snow on the plywood and no roof, how did THAT not leave a mark but the mini waterfall from the bathroom did even though we shop vac'd it rather quickly in comparison?

Anyhoo, the Mr and I made it our job to roll out the red underlayment to keep it quiet and I had to snap a crappy pic when the first board was starting to be put down.

I was basically useless.  I swept as boards were being cut but other than that, it was too many people in a small space and our friend is one of those guys who gets in his zones and just wants to get it done.  I understand because I grew up around many construction projects as a kid.  My friend (his wife) rescued me and we went shopping for 2 hours after eating lunch.  When we came back, this was about as far as they got and the Mr was helping...

I was kind of surprised at the progress at that particular point and was glad I wasn't there for the kitchen because I'm sure there was a LOT of cursing and speaking in tongues...maybe even a voodoo doll of us involved.  Even though our kitchen is small, it's a lot of angles and huge ass fridge that had to basically stay in there the whole time so yeah, I was much happier at Sur La Table sipping free lemonade than listening to the boys.  ;-)

It went much longer than I anticipated but it wasn't for lack of effort or anything, it's just that I'm horribly bad at judging how much time something like that takes.  Before that day, he kept saying he could knock it out in a day and I think even with our help, there were just a lot of variables even a professional like him couldn't foresee.  We felt horrible that he put in such a long day but in the end, it is probably better that it was knocked out in one shot instead of having it hanging over his head or us having to call and ask when he could finish and feeling bad.  By 11pm, we were at this point.

The floor had been laid and the baseboards were being cut.  I'll admit, after 11pm when the massive air compressor would run to refill the nail gun or the saw would go off, I would plug my ears and pretend it wasn't happening.  La la laaaaa!  I imagined our neighbors plotting their revenge and saying "the cookies were dry...not good enough!"  When all was said and 12:45am, the floor and new 4 1/4" baseboards were nailed in and most of the trim done.

It made me a little teary...

We both really love it.

We spent yesterday cleaning up the massive amounts of construction dust in the house.  We wiped down the walls and we got off the first layer of dust on the floors which were looking less than pretty.  I didn't want to get snookered into those high priced laminate cleaners off the bat so I did a lot of research online for all natural cleaners and I used a 50/50 mixture of water and distilled white vinegar.  At first the vinegar smell was really overwhelming and I LOATHE vinegar.  So I added about 1/2 cup of water after it went down some and added 10 drops of peppermint essential oil.  It smelled much better  It cleaned well and as long as I went with the grain of the plank, it didn't streak.  I've also heard to add 1/4 cup of alcohol if streaking becomes an issue but we'll see.

I spent the rest of the day caulking...

T'was not a fun project and I'll tell ya, there were a few spots that I wasn't jazzed about and wondered how I was going to make them look good but I rocked that chit!  The Mr was quite happy with my ability especially filling in seams and corners.  I ran out of caulk so I'll be getting more of that today to finish the little bit I have left.  If I don't do it while I'm in the mindset, it'll get put off forever.

That was just a majority of our fun but there were other issues we had to contend with but we'll tackle that tomorrow.

I have to say, while my dad and I aren't close, I am grateful that as a little kid, he let me tag along on construction projects.  I don't have the full blown gene of knowing how to miter cut or lay flooring on my own but I can swing a hammer, paint a wall, prune trees, caulk like da bizness and am willing to learn before automatically calling someone else to do something we could do ourselves with a little research.

What did you guys do this weekend?

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  1. I did not do near as much as you guys! Beautiful floors!!!

    1. I wish I had done not as much so I hope you enjoyed it for me! LOL

  2. That looks amazing! My parents are great DIYers and hubby is too, but I just don't have the gene. I can paint, and hold a board while someone cuts it, but that's about it. You are so lucky to have a friend who is not only able, but also willing to help you with a huge project like that.

    Friday and Saturday was the little guy's baseball tournament. I found out the hard way that the sunscreen I used was either not applied correctly (point and spray at skin right?) or was ineffective. I have all these weird spots where I'm sunburned pretty badly - many of which are places I'm sure I sprayed. I even reapplied. So yesterday was spent staying out of the sun and then we went to see "How to Train Your Dragon 2" last night. Such a great movie. The first kids' sequel in a long time to live up to the quality of the first film.

    1. Well, he's able but I think no longer willing. LOL He and his wife both indicated this was his last side job and I get it. But he offered several times so I was going to take him up on it before he hung up his hammer! But we always make sure we feed him and give him some money for his time which I think is more than others do, so I don't feel as bad.

      Aww man! Is it older sunscreen? I think they say it's only good for a summer then the effectiveness cuts in half. I know our point and spray from Trader Joe's was that way. It's almost like you can feel when your sunscreen stops working. I hope you feel better soon! So glad you enjoyed the movie, it's rare a sequel is as good as the original!

  3. It was quite a weekend and a ton of work but so worth it in the end. I am glad we did it. Hard to believe how we went from feeling so bad Friday night with everything in turmoil to having this new, beautiful room to enjoy. It's like a new house!

    1. Yes it was. I can't tell you how much I appreciate your help. I know he did the majority of the work but you laid your share of boards, underlayment, made cuts, swept, removed staples like a champ and so many other things. I know we were both dreading this Friday night (I seriously haven't dreaded something like that in probably 10 years) but I think we both agree it was worth it. Now if they'd get that big monster our of our garage, I could start painting the furniture. I'm so glad it's going to be armpit hot the next few days. Not.

  4. I wish we could diy, neither of us are good at it. Your floors look great and will hopefully give you lots of joy for years to come. if you ever want to try them out covered in cat fur, let me know and I'll box mine up and send her your way! :)

    1. ROFL! Well, considering the Mr is allergic, I think we'll take a pass but thanks for the offer. ;-)

  5. Love, love, love the flooring! Awesome job!!!!!

  6. The cookies were such a great idea! Also, LOVE the flooring colour. Good choice!

  7. Thanks for the tip on the moving straps! I'm glad to hear they worked out so well for you guys. They are going on my Amazon wishlist for my next move.

    The floors are beautiful!


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