New Floors – Prep and Paint – Part 1

img_2802This past weekend was a long weekend for me (State employees had Friday and Monday off), so it was the perfect time to get all of our painting knocked out! As I’ve mentioned before, I really enjoy painting, as long as I have the resources and the time.

I started prepping Friday by taping off the entire room and planning my attack. Once everything was taped off, I started priming the hallway and towards the front door. Once Deborah got home I decided to call it quits, but still had about two-thirds of the room left to do. Saturday one of our friends joined us to help finish the primer.

img_0120Sunday we had quite a bit going on around the house. Debs was cleaning and moving, I was cutting in everything, one friend was painting a closet, and another was helping me paint all the walls. After getting into the right ‘groove’, we flew through the whole house, finishing up in the early afternoon. We were a little worried at first due to where I cut in being darker than the rest of the paint, but by dinnertime, we noticed that everything was good to go. With the amount of prep work that went into getting everything set up, we noticed that we were not going to have to do a second coat, and just light touch ups here and there.

Monday I pulled off all the tape and inspected the walls. One of the first thing I noticed was just how BIG the rooms are now! Going from a dark to a much lighter color (especially in our small house), made a huge difference. Also, the walls seem to be much smoother after sanding and priming the walls (the first time we painted we didn’t prep at all).

img_0125Every night this week we have been moving more and more items around to get ready to pull up all the carpet. Tonight we may start moving some of the much larger items, like desks, dressers, etc. Starting Saturday we should be moving our bed and final items to other parts of the house, and pulling up the carpet and hauling away.

We will be staying in Short Pump starting Friday or Saturday night for the next week. We may be stopping by the house almost daily to check out the latest progress. I actually have to go by on my lunch break Monday to check out a few different stain examples. Originally we were going to not stain at all, but after how light the walls are, we decided to check a few out. Our contractor was nice enough to offer to try out 2 colors and the plain look in a small area, so we can make the decision!

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New Floors!

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Since moving in almost 2 years ago, we have yet to do many large projects other than the Den. But that’s all about to change, because in about 2 weeks, we will be on our way into our largest project yet – redoing our floors!

One of the reasons that we purchased the house is that it was hardwood throughout. But years ago, Deborah’s sister-in-law’s mom (who was the previous owner for 30+ years), put down cheap Berber carpet through most of the house. With not taking really good care of it, it looks terrible, is a pain to clean, and just doesn’t work for us.

After having recommendations from my mom and a friend’s real estate agent for the same person, we settled on a particular company. He came out to the house, did an estimate, and helped us pick a new color. We are actually going to go bare, with an oil based coat. He said that since our floors had some age (over 50 years old), they were going to be slightly darker than usual anyways, and with the oil based coat, it would really shine.

The only problem with oil is that it takes a quite a while to dry. So we are going to have to move out of the house for a week while they sand, prep, and then seal the wood, and then let it cure. We are going to be living with my mom in Short Pump for the week, but stopping by the house to check on progress. I will be taking pictures and posting about everything throughout the week. If I get any notes or tips from the company, I will share them with you as well.

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Finally, we are repainting a good portion of the house as well. We painted the entire house (except for the new office) before we moved in. But with the change in floor color (and not being to fond of the current color in the pictures in this post), it was time for a change. We started with the office over Christmas break, which is pretty much done except for some touch-ups. Starting this Friday, I will be prepping and painting the living room, hall, and dining room a much lighter tan/off white. The color we went with was called Vanilla Steam, and its a much lighter color.

As mentioned above, I’m going to be documenting this whole change. I plan on writing a few posts over the course of the work, and plan on eventually linking them all back here!

A somewhat disconnected and very enjoyable Christmas!

I didn’t get online much over the Christmas break, and for good reason. I was enjoying (as well as cursing at) the joys of home ownership (as well as celebrating the holidays).

Earlier last week, I started taping off most of the office. After we finished our Christmas shopping, we stocked up on supplies we needed for projects over the long weekend. The office is a light blue, and the living room / dining room/ halls will be an off-white color. After everything was prepped, it was time to ‘sign off’ and get to work.

After working half-day on Wednesday, we started moving a few items that were no longer needed from the office to other parts of the house. I was able to put up a coat of primer, mainly to give me a standard surface to paint on rather than the mix of thin lime-green paint over what used to be a pink room (note: this is the one room we did not touch when moving in). That night we went to go visit my dad’s side of the family for Christmas dinner and a gift exchange. We didn’t stay long, but it was nice to catch up with parts of the family, as well as to learn more about my cousins baby (who was born that morning!)

Deborah is still a little kid at heart on Christmas, so we usually get up rather early (that, and we are just so used to getting up at 7AM or earlier now, its hard to sleep in). After relaxing until 8, we exchanged our gifts. My wife (being the awesome one she is) gave me some cool new things:

  • Left4Dead (for the 360) and LittleBigPlannet (for the PS3)
  • Cocoa programing for Mac OS X – what I hear to be one of the best resources for learning Cocoa
  • Strut Tower Brace for my car – helps reduce body-roll in unibody cars. The SE-R’s have them, and her Stratus had one from the factory as well.
  • A Massage gift card – since im an old man (or at least feel like one), I get to relax for an hour and try to feel better!

Afterwords, there was a whirlwind of visits throughout the day, with the hopes of at least getting one coat of paint up. After going to her moms for breakfast, and then visiting my parents, we came home to cut-in and do the first coat of paint. This was able to dry while we went to my moms large Christmas dinner, and see quite a few faces we only see a few times a year. Friday we drove to Suffolk, VA to visit a close friend and her family, as well as do some shopping in Norfolk to just get out of town.

Since part of Saturday was pretty nice, we decided to get outside and start cleaning up the yard. But after the ‘perfect storm of events’ – tall grass, to much wind, and surprisingly little amounts of leaves to actually pick up, I just cut the front yard and called it quits. I usually love yardwork, but leaves are the one thing that really kills me. The weekend was already coming to an end, and I had yet to really get a chance to relax (or to finish the room).

Sunday was that day. I started painting the rest of the office, but ignored the ceiling and touch-ups (they will come when we move everything back out in 3 or so weeks). After playing some video games for a while, we put things back together in the office, and I also setup a new wireless router and redid part of our network.

During this entire time, I really never sat on the computer to check my feeds, respond to many emails, or see whats up on Facebook. The only time I actually really used the computer was to stream music while working. Though, I wasn’t fully disconnected, I obviously had my phone on me the entire time. I was able to respond to emails, check prices, chat with friends, and keep in touch like normal. This really attests to the iPhone’s versatility, and how useful a product like it can actually be. In some ways, the simplistic phone interface actually made tasks much easier than it would have been using a computer.

All in all it was  a great holiday. I have the office back to normal (somewhat) and ready to start on the next task (which is, in short, repaiting a large portion of the house, moving everything we own into 2 rooms, and tearing up carpet!).