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I’m Alive!

Sorry for the massive gap in posting!  The home improvement project ended up dragging on for a couple weeks longer than it should have, so I’m only now getting back to my laptop for the first time since I started this whole fiasco.  I think pictures say it better than words, so how about a photo-essay explaining what happened?

It all started with a big hate-on that I had for the downstairs carpet.  When I got this place, the carpet was horribly, horribly dark with grime, and even renting an industrial carpet cleaner didn’t get all the stains out (it was, however, effective in getting a good portion of the grime out, so that you could tell where my passes didn’t quite line up because there was a dark line between them).  In the picture, the rug is covering up the giant stain from the previous owner’s feet when sitting on the couch.

So, in short, the carpet had to go.

Getting the carpet and pad off was actually pretty easy…except I had to play a game moving the furniture around to different sections of the room as I cleared off different areas.  It was kind of like that game where you have to move the yellow blocks out of the way to get the red block out of the cage…no?  Okay, just me playing that game then.  Never mind.

Pretty soon, all the carpet was out and it was time to remove tiles, at which point I learned that my kitchen’s subfloor had been raised half an inch in a way that was hard-at-best to remove.

So that meant I had to raise the rest of the floor half an inch to make it all match.  That alone added days to the work required.

But after all of that, I finally got to place the first board!  I really thought I was almost done at this point, which…well, that feels kind of laughable now.  But still, I’d finally moved beyond prep to actual doing.

Laying in the actual boards was pretty quick, actually.  In no time I had a measurable amount of floor done.

And then I got to the kitchen, where my plan was to work backward to fill in so that I didn’t have to measure something exactly to make it all match up.

That would have worked great, except for the last board – it had to fit under the trim for the door, and no matter what I did it was absolutely not physically possible to slide it in.  I tried to use The Force to make it work for about 10 minutes before I gave up and went to plan B.

Plan B was basically a do-over – take all of the kitchen floor back up, and start from the end that I should have started from in the first place if I hadn’t been trying to be so darn clever.

Luckily, putting the wood down was super quick once it was cut to shape, so it was less than an hour to get it all back to where it had been before (plus the one extra f*&%ing piece on the end, of course).

The next challenge was removing the tile that had been cemented to the floor in front of the fireplace.  I wouldn’t have had to do this, except the idiot who flipped my house at some point cemented the tiles over the carpet, so…yeah.  Three hours of my life were spent hunched over this 5 square foot section chipping cement off the wood floor.

And then there was a bunch of trim work that I didn’t take pictures of because I was in The Zone™, and some caulking to make the trim look perfect, and some painting to cover the caulk, and…yeah.  It took a long time.

But then?  When it was all said and done, at the end I had this:

Beautiful, gorgeous, glowing hardwood.  I’m so in love with this floor that if I wasn’t already married I’d consider marrying it.  I have favorite pieces that I’ve picked out.  I even catch myself staring at it and thinking, “Oh, goodness, it’s so lovely.  I could just look at it for days.”

Even the closet has hardwood now – there’s something so utterly decadent about having a hardwood floored closet, isn’t there?

Of course, the closet doesn’t have a door anymore, but that’s a detail I can fix later…

Comments

Comment from Lookout
Time October 7, 2011 at 8:44 am

It’s wonderful!!