Thursday, August 8, 2013

More Than I Can Chew???


I don’t think so……….not yet at least. This all started when Helen decided that she wanted to “Do Over” the family room. We have been here 31 years and it is now in its third make-over, and I really like it just the way it is. In fact, I really liked it as it was in the second generation, too. Then I agreed to new furniture, off white leather and the old wallpaper was not right with the new furniture. Thus we had the room re-papered. It’s much lighter and I really do like it.

We still had the original floor.

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Three colors of earth tones put in a random pattern. I still remember Mr. Ritter, the tile man, questioning our pattern or lack of pattern. It was a foreign concept to him and he was uncomfortable taking the tiles at random and putting them in place. It wasn’t perfect, but we were well satisfied with the result.

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Over the years there has been a lot of wear in some places and I admit that it was time to make a change. Now, this is not a change that Helen would undertake. She was committed to removing the vinyl wall covering and painting the walls. UGH! So, in a moment of enlightenment, I tossed out the idea of changing the tile. Helen bit almost before the words were out of my mouth. In the next few weeks we visited a number of tile suppliers and took home samples to see in our home. Finally, we found one at Home depot that seemed to be the right shade and fit in with our décor and cabinetry. I returned and bought a whole box so we could lay it out and be really sure that it would have the look we wanted.

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I don’t drink, so I’m not sure what possessed me to start ripping up tiles one Friday night a couple of weeks ago. This is what it looked like by Saturday afternoon. Removing ceramic tile by hand with a hammer and chisel is no easy task, but I finally got it done.

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Most of the tiles came up, leaving the mortar behind. Unfortunately, some came up pulling the mortar and some concrete with it. You can see the white patches in the picture above where the concrete pulled away. I called my tiling advisor at Home Depot and was told that all those holes had to be leveled with concrete before laying the tiles. Moreover, we had to identify ALL HOLLOW SOUNDING areas and remove the loose concrete from those areas as well. I went over much of the floor and found several places that required work. Meanwhile, Helen became the tapping guru and tapped her way all around the floor identifying hollow spots with an “X”. I dug up all those areas and today I started applying concrete to the low areas.

Oh, beside that, I’ve been working on the windshield washer on the Lincoln. Success! repairing a leak in the pool plumbing. Success, but found two more leaks. And replaced the seal in the pool pump. Not successful. Sad smile  Helen took the pump to a local repair shop and we’ll have it back tomorrow.

It would be an understatement to say the I’m surprised at the amount of work this is taking. If I had known that it would be this involved, I may have settled for a redo of the walls. However, I AM making progress and should start actually laying tile by the weekend. I WILL complete this job on time and under budget, but that’s because I have no time limit and we never set a limit to the cost. In fact, when I scoped out the job, the kind of tile Helen wanted ran between $3.00 and $7.00 a square foot. When Helen and I finally found the right color, it was $2.79 a square foot. That’s how I found the money for my new Kayak.

I’ll be chewing for awhile, and I’ll certainly do another blog with the after pictures.


1 comment:

  1. Looks like you have been busy in your home, Donna is happy, she has her new porch and stairs to the sun porch.Looks like we will run out of money before we can have our sagging retaining wall replaced.Oh well it will have to wait a little while longer. Don't know if all the repairs we are doing is going to be cost effective,Probably won't bring much more if we sell the place.Donna is just getting over another bout of pneumonia, she is very susceptible to it. Had to put off any vacation trips until we are sure it is over. Rigg's and Sadie are doing fine. Hope to see you again next year. Sam & Donna.....