Thursday, February 23, 2006

Tile Weekend

The weather has finally shaped up around here, it's made it up to 60 today. The forecast for the weekend is still sunny and 60's, so we are going to hit the tiling in the bathroom this weekend. Finally, it will be warm enough INSIDE our house to tile. No, I'm not joking, it has been so cold inside our house lately that the thin-set cannot be applied. We painted the bathroom ceiling one day anyways, even though the paint can suggested a minimum room temperature, and we found out there is a reason why you should follow directions. We now have cracked paint on the ceiling. Oh well, lesson learned, at least it was just paint. So, for those of you with wall tile experience, do you have any helpful suggestions? You know, the kinds of things you figure out after you've spent hours working on the project? We learned with the floor tiles that the less perfect the little design made by the trowel in the thin-set is, the less thin-set seaps between the tile. And the faster it dries! So, any helpful tips like that would be much appreciated!
A few questions:
  • How do you keep the tiles from slipping down on the wall, do you tape them? I know you use spacers for placement, but do they help keep things in place?
  • How large of a space should we tile at a time? With the floor, we did about a 2'x2' section at a time. We are using the 3x6 subway tiles for the walls.
  • If the bathroom is 6'x9', and we are tiling about 4' up the wall, about how long will this take? All of Saturday? Sunday as well?
  • Any ideas on how to fix the hole in this picture? I was thinking maybe we should secure a small piece of wood under there and just go for it, any advice?

Monday, February 20, 2006

Baby It's Cold...

It's cold outside, it's cold much longer did that groundhog say it would be? We FINALLY got a real snow, it's the first one of the season albeit a little late. It looks like we got around 6 inches, although I don't know if that's the official count. What I do know is that it has been COLD and central heating is a luxury we do not have! We used blankets to block off the coldest rooms, the laundry room, dining room and "blue room", then we hung more blankets to keep the warmth in the living room. Which is where we stayed all weekend when we weren't out getting coffee. We had big plans to tile the walls in the bathroom, but the thin-set has limitations as to what temperature the room has to be, so that ended that. We did actually stay nice and warm in the living room though, unless we had to make a kitchen or bathroom run. Chris's cousin Tommy is in town from Germany, so we all just hung out and watched movies and made coffee runs. It ended up being a very nice, relaxing weekend which is something we really haven't had in awhile. It's supposed to make it up to 40 degrees today and by Friday it will be in the 60's, so we should be able to start the tiling by mid-week. Maybe we will have our bathroom by March?

Friday, February 17, 2006

Bathroom Tile Part 1

Last weekend, we installed the mosaic tiles in the upstairs bathroom. We're getting closer and closer to bathing in our own house, just not quickly enough. After about 5 1/2 hours of laying tile, we ran out, just 6 sections short. So we had to wait until Monday when the tile company was open again to pick up more. Not a big deal, because our backs and knees couldn't take any more than that! So now it's all down, and we are just waiting until it's cured to start on the wall tile. The bucket of thin-set said it took 48 hours to cure, but it was still squishy when we stepped on it on Wednesday. Hmm, so we wait a little longer. Being the amateurs that we are, we are petrified to start on the wall tile. The bathroom floor is fairly level (as far as old houses go), except for one small slope in the middle that causes the floor to dip just slightly. So the question is, do we apply the wall tile to match the slope, or try to keep it level? Chris is thinking we should just get a quote on having someone else do it, I think we should just go for it and see what happens. If anyone has any advice as to applying wall tile, we are all ears!

Friday, February 10, 2006

Now We're Cooking! (with gas!)

The stove we ordered at the first of January finally came in this week! I'm sure I'll think differently later, but right now I am SO tired of eating out and eating microwave dinners in. I have not cooked dinner since at least before Christmas (we moved the day after), but more likely a week or two before then, since we were packing to move.

A few updates:
We STILL have the mouse, and we can't seem to catch him. We put a trap out, the traditional kind, loaded with cheese. The little monster stole the cheese, but the trap didn't snap! So then we tried peanut butter, surely the mouse would trip that one. Nope, he licked it off and it still didn't snap. Someone told us to get a glue trap, but I couldn't stand the thoughts of some poor little fuzzy mouse dying a slow and starving death stuck to a board. Yes, go ahead and roll your eyes... But, I think I'm reconsidering. Maybe I will just leave that up to Chris...

We bought a kerosene heater, I was very skeptical. I just KNEW it would smell and create awful, hazardous fumes that might kill us. I was wrong. Not much smell, only when you extinguish it, no fumes, cheap to run, and it puts out the heat! One evening, the thermostat for the furnace (that will not light) read 50 degrees. Well, with that kerosene heater, we managed to get it up to almost 70. No more freezing for us...we hope!

We got the kitchen all painted, and the fabric bought for the curtains and the cabinet curtains. But that's as far as we've gotten. This weekend, we hope to put up open shelves and I WILL get the curtains finished.

Also on the agenda for the weekend is painting the bathroom ceiling and putting in the floor tile. It all sounds unrealistic to do in one weekend, but most are just small jobs that won't take too long. At least that's what I keep telling myself...

Sunday, February 05, 2006

2 Gigs of RAM Rocks!

I finally started building my new computer. After the mobo died in my home computer this past Thanksgiving, I just now started assembly. I was delayed first by RMA'ing the dead part, then I decided to do a full upgrade and spend time deciding which parts I wanted, then I there was Christmas, then there was moving, then there was work on the house. That, combined with building/fixing computers everyday for clients put this project on the back burner...

Until now!!!

I'm so excited to get to play games again, I just had to share. ;)

Here are the specs of the new beast!
  • ASUS A8N-SLI Premium motherboard
  • AMD Opteron 148 processor
  • 2GB OCZ Dual Channel Titanium memory
  • qty-2, 74GB Raptor, 10,000RPM Hard Drives (RAID 0)
  • qty-2, eVGA 7800GT video cards
  • Ultra X2 550W Modular power supply
  • NEC 16x dual layer DVD-RW
  • Antec P160 case

Here is the mother board, prepped and ready to be installed.

2 gigs of RAM, baby!

Check out the cable management (and the Raptors).

This is as far as I got, once again things like tiling and painting the bathroom and working on OPC (other peoples computers) have gotten in the way of Call of Duty 2. Oh well, you know what they say about cobblers' kids.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

In the Middle

The drywall is complete! The bathroom actually looks like a room now. I'm not sure exactly what order we need to do the following in, but this is what we need to do:
  • Paint the walls & ceiling
  • tile the floor
  • tile the walls
After those are done we can install the tub, toilet, sink, and all the light fixtures. It's hard to imagine life once this bathroom is complete. I do know one thing though, we need to do everything else ourselves...Or at least enlist the help of friends/family who are willing to work for free, pizza, or beer. Paying people to do stuff like drywall, plumb, lay sub floors, etc. is getting expensive. It makes me wonder how much more I would have been charged if I had let them do the demo work instead of me. I hope I saved a bunch of money by...Doing the demo myself.
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