Posts Tagged ‘fireplace’

shopping local

Today we went shopping for a mantle for the fireplace. We took advantage of the great weather, and went to Waikiki Beach. Not that one, but a beach down at the park at the end of the peninsula. There was a lot of wood to choose from:
While we were there, we contemplated bringing home this new car ——  
but decided that we have too many already.
We did find a good piece – no surprise –  and then had to haul it out of there. Easier said than done- it took us a couple of hours. It was about seven feet long, and 20" across, and heavy. We drug it with straps, rolled it on small logs, and once off the beach finally put it on a hand truck to wheel it to the truck. You can take wood, but no power tools ( chainsaws ) are allowed in the park. We took it to a local guy who has a small saw mill. He is supposed to call us in a couple days when he goes to cut it, then we’ll go and have him cut a 4×8 out of it with the edge that we want. I can’t wait to have that whole fireplace project finished.

The other day there was yet another critter – a whole family, actually – at the bird feeder. Sunny saw them, as the feeder is about eight feet from the sliding door, and her barking chased them off – Here’s an ‘I spy" pic
that Richard took. Today the deer were back, looking for the free lunch. They don’t scare away easily. I’ve learned how to shake the ‘no barking’ can ( that we use for Sunny ) together with a gibberish goofy holler, and they run. I need to teach them that the crazy person is here and they should stay away. Until we get a fence, and that could be awhile. Its a fun game.
The other night as it was clouding up, I got this great picture  .

I’ve been making good progress knitting on a sweater. Maybe I’ll have it done in the next few days.

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‘Bye ol’ Blue!

So, I thought I’d put up a pic of the painting to date.The red is really bright ( good!) when the sun hits it, and I love that there is almost no blue left ( its my least favorite color ). I’ve gotten a little more of the trim done, but there’s still a lot left – the railings and all of the big beams. But it’s started to rain and it looks to continue for the next week, so there will be no painting for a bit.  

This week the new wood insert was installed, and we’ve had a fire in it a couple nights. It puts out so much heat with hardly any wood, I am stunned. It seems to be doing exactly the job I hoped it would. I love the tile, and am getting used to just how ‘little’ the insert actually is. We still have to get a mantle and finish the surrounding wall and above, but its useable.  The flooring will have to wait, I’m learning to live with the ’70s carpet.

Richard’s knee is slowly getting better. I know he’s going crazy trying to stay off it.
Wednesday I took the day and went to Tacoma to meet my Mom and sisters. We went to the Museum of Glass, which was a bust – there was more glass works in the surrounding area that you could see for free that was amazing. Mom came back home with me, and will be here until Sunday. Richard and I have finished the business plan, and now will be submitting it all to the banks. Then wait. 

I think its time to sew for a bit.

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take that!

 Gone with you, ugly fireplace! This is what’s left of it:

And this is what we have to show for our couple day’s work: . A concrete block wall!
We hung visquene from floor to ceiling and taped off any openings around the whole area. The dust in the rest of the room was almost nil, but there was still plenty of cleanup to do. So now there is a big pile of rocks – some of which were over a hundred pounds and took both of us to carry out . There’s also a huge pile of rubble – all the mortar and stuff. My guess is that there was over a ton of stone in the whole affair. 
Tomorrow we’ll go into Astoria to a fireplace shop which carries a couple of the brands that we’re looking at. And I think we need to find a mason to reconstruct the bench/hearth part of it. I’ve pretty much decided on soapstone tiles for the surround and the top of the bench. Topped by a thick plain mantel that will match the dark beams in the ceiling, and just wall above. 

Now for a commerical. Because I had forgotten how yucky all that concrete dust is – it was heaven to scrub down with my new favorite thing: Olay Ribbons bodywash. Just a small blob on the scrubbie and you’re covered in lightly scented foam

Time for a drink, and to relax.

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one more year

I love looking at markers. Where were you a year ago today? I like that about livejournal in that you can go back and see. I like to be able to count/see/measure change from any given point.         Today is Richard’s birthday. I’ll give him a couple of small gifts and take him to dinner. Last year on this day, he was here at the house moving a load of stuff. I was in Santee, and the For Sale sign had just gone up. What a year.  Seems like a lot has happened – I guess a lot has happened. 

This morning Deb and the kids left ( well – young adults – Brenden and his girlfriend, and a friend of his who’s here from Germany ). We had a great time, and the weather was in our favor for sightseeing  and walking yesterday. Today it is grey out. 
I am so grateful to be nearer to my family again. 

We now have two weeks until young Richard & little Richard ( henceforth known as ‘the Richards’) arrive. They’ll be here for a few days before Lauri & Aidan arrive. At that point we’ll officially have a full house. The Richards will be here for about six days or so, before driving back. Lauri and Aidan will be here for a week before we take them back to Seattle to fly home. This house will see a lot of excitement for a week. 

We’re still waiting on parts for the water system, so it looks like we will resume work on the fireplace. But before we do, we need a couple new chisels for the airhammer, and we have to come up with a better system for curtaining off the work area. I know that no matter what it will still be dusty, but I have to minimize it as much as possible. 

I like the idea that a year from now, the messy fireplace demo will be just a memory. And as a bonus there will be one space in the living room in which I can hang a picture larger than 8×10 inches! 

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No going back

 So, after several hours we ended up with this:  .  I hate it when Richard is wrong! ( he thought he could demo the whole thing yesterday )There were many buckets of rubble, lots of rocks, and a big mess. We laid out dropcloths, hung a curtain around the area, put a big fan in the fireplace to draw out dust, and covered the doorways on either side, but that only helped some. The cleanup took a couple of hours. Richard has a really good shop-vac which had a big workout. I love the fact that now we are committed to ridding ourselves of that big funky fireplace wall. There is a similar one downstairs, but the stone used is nowhere near as ugly as this, so we’ll leave it as is. Since there’s company coming today, we won’t resume this project until later in the week. 
Meanwhile, Richard will be working on the water project, as the remaining parts are due in today. I’m hoping for ‘good’ water by week’s end.

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We aren’t going to paint until the new doors and windows are done ( which I think will happen next month ), so its on to the next thing on the long to-do list.
Yesterday we began to deconstruct the fireplace surround in the living room. We had high hopes that a sledge hammer and chisels might make quick work of the demo, but nooooo. The big quartz type ( I had thought it was some kind of bad 70s faux stone ) rocks are really thick  and heavy and put in with several inches of mortar. Richard has a lot of air hose – enough to reach from the shop clear up to the house – something like 150 feet or so, and he has a small air chisel. We got after it, and after a couple hours we had a big mess and only a small portion of the rocks removed.  Last night he announced that today he would finish getting all of that stone off of there. Mostly he wants the messy part to be over with quickly. I sure don’t think that’s possible, but – hey – guess he needs the challenge.  Even though I have logged years using a chipping gun ( way back when ), he seems to want to do it. Using power tools must really be in his blood. I’m sure it will take the both of us to get some of the big rocks down without destroying other things in the room.   Our goal is to have the cast iron insert in place by October 1 – a lot of work to do between now and then.  Here’s a shot of what we have facing us, and what we got done yesterday.
         The best part about this project is planning for what will replace this monstrosity. Mostly it will be drywall above a dark wood mantle, with a tile fireplace surround and seat. 
There is some free stone, if anyone wants it ;~) 
My guess is that we’ll end up adding it to the fire ring outside.

My sister, her son and friends are coming tomorrow for a couple days. After today’s workout, we’ll be happy relaxing for a bit.  I’m hoping the weather is good while they’re here. 

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I’ve been in Seattle for over a week now, and at this point I’m missing the better weather at the beach. You can’t say that too often, but it does happen now and then. Here it is raining, hailing and even snowing some. Yuck.

I drove in last Wednesday to help Ryan do some work on his house. We made progress ( though not as much as I thought we would ). He has decisions to make before it can go any farther, and I have to leave that to him.  
Its been a nice week, and Richard joined me here a couple days ago; he rode the bus from Ocean Park, switched to a second bus to Longview/Kelso and got on the train headed north. I picked him up in Edmonds. It took all day for the ride, but he enjoyed the laid back pace of the whole adventure.  
In addition to working at Ryans’ house, I went nursery shopping with Mom. There are trees and plants that I want for the house, and I’m anxious to start making my own mark on the neglected ‘yard’.  We also went to a quilt show on Sunday, and took a long drive around Lake Sammamish en route to a couple nurseries. Wow, has that area changed. Looks to me like any house more than ten years old that was lakefront and sold recently was razed in order to put up an obscenely huge, lot-filling house.  I feel really bad for those who built there thirty years ago, now being surrounded by monster houses.  Yesterday I got a haircut – not yet ready to have someone from the beach area do that.

I also got to go to Snohomish to have lunch with Deb; dinner at Gretchen’s; dinner at Justin’s; dinner out with nearly everyone and just plain hang out and talk with all of my family that is here. Nice.  

I did some furniture shopping with Ryan, and have come to some decisions about interiors for our house. I am really leaning to flooring from this place for the downstairs. Not sure which style or color(s) yet. Seems pretty utilitarian, without being cold. And, it’s interesting, colorful, and low maintenance to boot. I’m also rethinking the idea of a leather sofa to match the loveseat that we already have in the living room – its soo cold to sit on ( the cool was nice in So. Cal, but not here). I’m looking into wood framed vintage Danish Modern styles, like this one, (but not so pricey!) and I would recover the cushions in an Ultrasuede material. I think I’ll be on the hunt for awhile before I find the perfect one.  Seems like there are some good vintage furniture shops in the Portland area to go looking at. 
Yesterday Richard and I also went to a fireplace shop and looked at wood inserts for the upstairs ( main ) fireplace. There are some more modern type ones out now, from a company called Scan versus the more traditional type from Jotul. I’m not sure which style we will end up with, but by next fall there will be one of those in the to-be refurbished fireplace to help offset the high heating bills of the colder months. 

Today was spent helping Mom finish up a quilt on her quilting machine, and staying out of the yucky weather. Tomorrow we’ll see more family, and I think we will head home on Sunday. 
I’m hoping the weather there will be better.  I don’t think it could really be worse.

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