Welcome to our travels and adventures

Welcome to our travels and adventures

It’s not a Train….

1410186 Oct 26 Barb Painting The StudyIn our last posting, we were painting the house and Barb 1410187 Oct 26 Terri Painting Kitchen& Terri continued painting on Sunday, Oct 26th. I continued installing lighting in the rooms that were done. Finally, the house is all painted so we started to install the bathroom cabinet. Yes, we bought the unit from Ikea and easy to assemble and hang. Our problem is we’re dealing with old people – Barb & I could not remember the co-ordinates of the blocking that we 1410190 Oct 26 Light In Bedroom Ceilingput in the wall to support the unit! Great plan but dumb mistake not to record where the blocking was! At last, we found one set and decided to use wall anchors for the other pair. It was too late to go shopping for anchors so enough for the day.1410210 Oct 27 Vanity Finally Installed

Well, Monday morning brings a clearer head and Barb & I tackle the bathroom vanity again and found the wall blocking and mounted the vanity, installed the sink and connected the plumbing. Another milestone, running water in the house (beside the shower) and a place to clean our paint brushes – I don’t think so says Barb! Barb continues with painting doors, outdoor lights and the house numbers. This gives us a sense of nearing the finish line by doing the small tasks.

Tuesday was another day off, Randy & Norma came over for a visit before we all went south for the winter. Their plan is to leave early November and today was the best day for all of us to get together. After a quick tour of the progress of the house, we settled back in the trailer for games of fast track – I say games because it was a bit of a marathon of fast track. We stopped for lunch – Norma brought lunch to treat us for our hard work – and then carried on with our marathon. It was a fun day off and all too soon, we were saying our farewells until next summer when we all return from our winter retreats.

1410225 Oct 28 Late Night Pick Up FlooringThat evening, we drove into HD to pick up our flooring – yeah, laying flooring is another step toward the end! It is exciting but at the same time we’re anxious, it’s an old house and with uneven floors, less than square walls, where do we start? The guys at HD were great, we had 31 boxes of flooring and they loaded it right into t1410206 Oct 27 Barb Painting Quarter Roundhe truck – using a fork lift of course and refused to follow us home to unload it! Arriving late, we decided to unload the flooring in the morning – no light in the garage – and since the flooring is vinyl, the dampness will not harm it.

On Wednesday, after we unloaded the flooring into the garage, we cut the 1/4 round for the 1410226 Oct 29 Barb Filling Nail Holeswindows and Barb nailed, filled and painted it. I installed receptacles, switches and plates. Whew, busy, busy as we can see that the light at the end of the tunnel is NOT an oncoming train!

On Thursday, Barb continues with the window trim and I install more electrical devices. Our building code specifies that we have to have a smoke and CO detector in the main area and a smoke detector in 1410229 Oct 29 Terry Installing Livingroom Lightseach bedroom, they must be interconnected so when one goes off, they all go off. Seems like over kill for a house this size. Anyway, we both complete our doings and decide to try to fix a major floor squeak in the bathroom. Because our ‘crawl space’ is too small for anyone to go under the floor, we have to open the floor from above to try to fix. It seems like a step back but we have to do it so out comes the circular saw, remove screws and open it up. We do not see anything obvious but we add some cross bracing anyway and replace the floor. It seems like we have improved it but it still squeaks a little.

1410248 Oct 30 Barb Lays Bathroom Floor TileWe start to rationalize how and where we start the 1410249 Oct 31 Terry Putting Floor Under Doorvinyl plank flooring. We do not want to put transitions at thresholds on the 2 doors where the flooring goes through so to us DIYers, this will take a little planning. After discussions, we get underway and start in the bathroom. The vinyl flooring we choose for here is not as flexible as we thought and after a couple of hours of frustration, we break down and read the installation instructions! Everyone knows that laminate flooring needs to be acclimatized before laying but who would have 1410266 Oct 31 Hallway Finishedthought that vinyl also needs to be acclimatized! So, we carried all the boxes into the house so it can acclimatize before we attempt it again. It was amazing how much easier it was to install after 24 hours in the house. By the end of Friday, the bathroom and hall floor were down and the toilet installed.

Saturday was another milestone day – we had a counter 1411002 Nov 01 Terry Laying Floor Into Kitchentop installer in to measure for our kitchen counter tops! Whoopie. He gave us some tid bits of info for the kitchen and also re-assured us that the Ikea kitchen cabinets are among the best, he has had one for 10 years now and no problems of adjustment and hasn’t fall apart. After he left, Barb & I continued the flooring that now extended into the great room. We had moved the fridge earlier and now that the cabinets have been measured, we move them out so we have an empty easel for the floor.

1411011 Nov 01 Terri Barb Fitting Floor Around PipesTerri and Mark arrive early afternoon to help out again – it’s always nice to see them, the extra hands helps us move forward a bit quicker. So Barb & Terri carry on with the flooring in the great room and move into the 1411014 Nov 01 Mudroom SufFlooring Almost Finishedstudy while Mark & I get at those pesky little jobs like putting the subfloor over the concrete in the mud room. All this work made us thirsty and after dinner, we played a few games of fast track.


1411016 Nov 01 Livingroom Almost Finished



That’s it again for our week, we hope all is good where you are….

Many Hands Make Progress Fun

1410128 Oct 19 Sod Laid On Second Compost PileToday, Sunday, Oct 19th, we are taking a day off! Yes, a day off. But, before we do, we created a couple of earth berms to help keep the rain water from the road away from the house and it needed some sod to keep it in place. Then we cleaned up so we could be somewhat presentable. We are having friends from Minnesota stop by for a few days to lend a hand or two. We met Dick & Karla at a Habitat for Humanity caravan build in Thibodaux, Louisiana, in 2005 and have been good friends ever since. They have a winter place in Florida and are on their way south and stopped by for a few days – we had a great time and with their help, moved our project forward.

Anne, our cousin in London was judging in Toronto and also stopped by for a tour of our project and stayed overnight. First though, Anne wanted a tour of Buffalo before arriving here! She was in the wrong lane on the QEW a1410131 Oct 20 Karla Barb Dick Working On Cupboardsnd missed the last turn off before crossing the Peace Bridge into the USA, she gave us a ‘panic’ call as she was crossing into Buffalo. After she arrived, the 5 of us had a terrific evening.

1410132 Oct 20 Karla Nailing On Back Of CabinetThe next day after saying goodbye to Anne and with 8 very capable hands, we start assembling the kitchen cabinet bases. After we paint, we have to have the kitchen counter company in to measure up so we can order the counter top. So Dick & I carted the bases in from 1410136 Oct 20 Karla Checking Instructionsthe garage/workshop/storage space and the 4 of us start the assembly. Once you get through one, the rest seem fairly easy to understand and complete – there has to 1410139 Oct 20 Big Cupboard Moved To Fridge Sidebe something wrong with this picture, there were no ‘spare’ parts left over when a cabinet was done! Anyway, by mid afternoon we are done and decided that we need to install the door and window trim before we paint – all the trim is going to be painted out with the walls to help make the place look bigger. So, off to the store to buy buy buy.


1410146 Oct 21 Dick Bringing In The Window FramesOn Tuesday, Dick & I measured, cut and fit the trim while Karla 1410151 Oct 21 Dick Terry Working In Garageand Barb nailed and filled nail holes. By the end of the day, we had all the trim up, nail holes filled and could be ready for paint after some sanding. It was a busy couple of days with our Minnesota buddies and we all had fun being together, building, yakking and enjoying the company. Thanks guys, we hope to see you again soon.  May you have safe travels on your journey south.


1410154 Oct 21 Karla Ready For Happy Hour

1410172 Oct 24 Barb Painting Study WindowOn Wednesday, Barb & I started the task of final inspections 1410182 Oct 25 Barb Sanding Mudroom Windowsand corrections before we break out the paint brushes and rollers. As we were getting ready to paint, Larry, my next older brother walked in the back door – what a surprise for us. After the ‘cooks’ tour, we sat about chatting and catching up. He left early afternoon for his drive back to Whitevale. Barb & I got a couple of ceilings painted before we ran out of light.


1410163 Oct 23 Terry Attaching Light To CeilingOn Thursday, Barb continued working on the tri1410168 Oct 24 Terry Installing Front Door Potlightsm and I got the lighting installed in the front room. At the end of the day, we drove into Ikea to return a damaged cabinet and exchange a wall cabinet for a bigger unit for over the fridge. Another long day but we see progress and it’s exciting to see the kitchen cabinets.



1410175 Oct 25 Terri Barb Painting In The BathroomFriday was more of the same, painting, lighting 1410173 Oct 24 Terry Painting Hall Ceilingand priming trim. Terri arrived later to help with the paining over the weekend. So on Saturday, it was the three of us, rollers whirring, brushes slapping and even I helped out a little!


1410184 Oct 25 Terri Finished In Bedroom

That’s it for our week, we hope all is good where you are….