Given three days of time off from work and a bunch of impending deliveries approaching, I figured I’d better get off my ass and make some progress in the bathroom. What was hanging me up were the thresholds over both doorways. As I explained earlier, I needed to cover up the crappy leftover wooden thresholds from the old doorway and the tile where the installer didn’t finish it up to the edge. I’d bought two sections of oak flooring, 5.5″ wide by 4′ long and 5/8″ tall and notched them out on the edges so they’d fit inside the doorframe. I then spent about two weeks puzzling over how I’d set up the router to cut the angles, and decided I needed a cheap router table to mount everything on. Once I had that, I needed to modify the table to accept an oversized bit (the diameter of the hole in the table was about 2″ wide, and the diameter of the specialized bit I bought was about 4″).
I toyed with cutting a larger hole in the table but realized that would decrease its structural integrity, so then I found some thin scrap wood in my stash, cut a notch in the center, and clamped it to the surface of the table, effectively raising the deck up high enough to clear the edge of the bit. I dialed in the depth with a few test runs and then ran both pieces of oak through, ending up with a beautiful 60˚ slope on either side ending at an edge about an eighth of an inch high. Once those were test-fit and in place, I nailed in the casing around the front and back doors for good and sorted out the cap moulding for the back corner, where the door and window casings come together.
Then I went downstairs and started disassembling the dining room windows. We’ve got replacement windows on order, but as I’d mentioned before the vertical framing had been destroyed by the goons who covered it over in 1950.
I used my trusty oscillating saw to cut one of the sides in half, pulled it out, and cut the nails off with an angle grinder. I’d found good-quality pine at Lowe’s in nonstandard sizing, so I picked up a 2x6x8 that actually measured 2 1/8″ thick instead of 1 3/4″ and cut it down to size, then tacked it in place and made sure it was square. This went in with a minimum of fuss, so Hazel and I went back out for three more boards after a couple of hours at the pool last night.
This morning I got started cutting the other verticals out and by noon had the rest of them replaced with fresh clean wood, braced to the wall studs and ready for new windows. I might have to mill new casings for everything, but it’ll be good to have clean windows in place and insulation around everything to clean that wall up. And it’ll be even better to be able to open the front windows for cross breeze when the weather gets warm again.
We hit the pool on the final day of the season, and it was packed when we got there. The forecast had been 40% chance of rain and cloudy, and it wound up being 88˚ and sunny so every other member had the same idea we did. I’d finished the dining room window surgery and cleaned up my mess by about 1PM, so I took the dog for a walk, grabbed a quick shower, and off we went. I didn’t actually get the chance to get in the water but it felt good to sit and relax and sip an illicit beer in the sunshine.
There’s a dotted line of spray paint on the lawn from one of the utilities, who came and marked their wires last Friday. Hopefully BG&E will show up today to mark their lines, because the electric fencing is supposed to be installed on Wednesday. We’re technically not supposed to use it until Hazel is 6 months old, so I’m not sure what we’re going to do just yet, but it would be great for her to be able to run the length of the yard without being on a lead. It only takes her about 30 seconds to get her line tangled around a chair, the grill, the porch stairs, and another chair, but she loves to be outside in the sunshine and I’d love to let her run free. Plus, the squirrels and chipmunks would disappear for good.
I’m going to have someone come in and give us a price on clearing and paving the driveway, because now that the tree is gone that side of the house looks shittier by an order of magnitude. Nothing is going to make the garage look any better other than tearing it down and starting over, but if the driveway was actually clean and paved, it would do a lot to tidying up the curb appeal of the house. Somewhere in the back of my mind I’d been waiting for when the new garage was put in, but that’s not happening anytime soon, and I’d like to address the drainage on that side of the house as soon as possible. Ideally we’d have them put in two drains from each corner of the house to send all of the rainwater across the driveway to the slope on the other side, which should be a relatively simple trenching job. That would also keep the garage drier (currently the runoff flows down the driveway and straight into the front of the garage) and the driveway cleaner.
Then I’ve got to have someone come and give me a price for new covered gutters around the atrium. Now that that shitty tree is gone they won’t get as full of debris, but it’s a bitch to get up there and clean them, and they are the only ones that weren’t replaced when we did the roof 10 years ago.