Monday, May 10, 2010

I just can not believe that everytime I fix something, five more things break. I was done with Cheryl's honda and was almost done with her sequoia. All I had to do was the back brakes and changing out the gear lube in the two differentials and the transfer case. Easy peasy maybe a few hours.

Laura went out to start the thing on mothers day and it was spewing smoke. I know engines and it is blown. Plugs fouled valve clatter. Bad news. This is the same car that gave me so many problems before. i have had toyotas all my life but this one is a piece of shit. I think that I will never buy a toyota again. They just lost focus. Before you were guaranteed quality. Now there is some certain percent that you will get a POS. My general feeling is that toyotas before 00 are good but after that maybe 5% chance of crap. Maybe the market is 5-2%. In my head Malcom is telling me that is too wide and to may a real market. so it is probably realy 1.5%-0.5%. Still a high percent but I stand by it.

I didn't realize that the car was f-ed until I had the whole front end torn off the 4runner. 250k miles means that it was time for a total brake rebuild and new front bearings. So I worked until about 10pm tonight to get it back together. Seems we can't live with only 2 cars. I still have a long list for the 4runner and the other honda needs a tune up.

As for the sequoia, I am taking it to the korean. He is the man. Minimum $2k if it is just the value seals but more like $5k for a rebuilt engine. I may need to get a job to pay for all this.

Meanwhile the deck is calling and I am not making alot of progress. Trioba is ramping up and requires my attention every day.

Monday, April 12, 2010

I am beat. I just completed an expedition legth floor tiling session.

Wednesday night:

Floor tiling gal named Leslie came by and gave me some advise on laying tile and the specific layout for my kitchen. I have been struggling for a week to sort out the pattern and had come up with some complex layout that was just way to busy and would have been unbelievably difficult and who knows how it would have turned out.

She cut straight to the chase. Wlaked right in laid out some tile and said I think this would look and work the best and would be easy to pull off. Completely not complicated but nice pattern.

The money advice; pull out the dishwasher and tile under so that I would tile it in permanently.

Thursday morning:

Drop off Cheryl, Sarah, Mathew, and Kevin at the airport. They are going to the national orienteering interscholastic championships. On the way home stop by pops for a large drill to mix the thinset and then home depot for 10 1/4 inch cement backer board. Home by 9AM and pulling out the dishwasher.

Itquickly became clear that the contractor that built the island with the dishwasher, built it too low. Even though I told them that I would be laying a new floor, they didn't build in enough clearance to add an inch of flooring. I spent a few couple of hours looking at it and trying to make it work. I called the contractor and had my neighbor come over for a look as well. There were two options, rip out another layer of flooring or rip off the new countertop and redo it.

I paid the contract over 15k to build the island and now I have to rip it apart? You ahve got to be kidding. My neighbor pointed out that I should just get the floor done and rip out the counter top later. He was correct. If something goes wrong with it I can remotely shut off the water and not use it. And since the family iss gone this weekend, it is best to make progress and get the floor done.

Last week I was pissed that the contactor overordered the countertop tile by about 80sf. I pulled my ad off craigslist as I will be using it now.

I spent the rest of the day putting done the cement backer board. That stuff is nasty. I must have put down 500 screws. I also got some practice mixing and spreading thinset.


Tile time. worked about 10 hour and got just over half the tile laid. Mknees are sore and my back is sore. i took some vitamin I and ordered a pizza

Thursday, April 01, 2010

3 layers of floor have been ripped up. 180sqf of slate have been washed and sealed. The backer board is sitting alonside the dlate on the back porch. My neighbor came by and suggested that I lay out out some of the tile in our proposed pattern to identify any problems.

That was a real good call. We have five entryways into this room that is L shaped and we planned on doing a diagonal pattern. I looked at it for hours last night and no matter how I spaced them, I just couldn't get it to work. We are going to call in help and get a consult from a pro. I can lay the stuff, I just need to get the pattern dialed.

These two are the finished job.

Below, the wife got home and decided to help out. I was working on my 5th beer and was just supervising at this point. notice the racing stripes. This was the first linoeum layer over the original harwood floor. circa 1920-30?

Laura pulling nails. I have never seen so many nails

I kinda liked this pattern and it matched the paint but Cheryl wouldn't let me keep it. This was the second layer circa 1950

Existing layer circa 1980s?

Saturday, March 27, 2010

I thought maybe probation was in sight. Mention was made of possibly reordering priorities. something about fairness in required duties. it was a passing thought. Got a full 12 hours in today. Started with painting the final coat of the kitchen ceiling. Painted trim. Sprayed moss, schrubbed down the kitchen, painted cubboards, went to costco and now I'm done. Three or four sheets to the wind. I work all day radio as a my friend. the list is getting longer and not smaller. Yesterday the 100 year old pipes backed up. I got to spend the afternoon in the nasty crawl space with disgusting pipes. the water looked great for a paddle today.

Tomorrow is another full day. 900lbs of slate arrived today. The kitchen floor is calling and I'm going for another beer.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Sometimes the wife is right. The deck has needed to be rebuilt for the past 10 years and we have only lived her for 9 of them. A few before pictures. Some don't look so bad, so show the real problems.

You may be asking yerselves: Why start the deck when the kitchen isn't finished? Well there are days that I can't work in the kitchen. Right now the mud needs a few days to dry so it is on hold and I don't want to open another can of worms inside the house. One room at a time.

This is a disaster. The whole superstructure is like this. I only hope that it didn't get into the house.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I have been sanding and applying a second coat of drywall mud in the kitchen. It took me most of the the day including clean up. I am working on the my third Guiness so blogging is probably not the best idea. I am tired of this. I hate drywall. I hate sanding. I would most prefer to be spending the day with my boys, paddling, running or riding. David just watches videos while i work. We should be out at the park or the pool or exploring the world.

My options are very limited. I am expected to do all the housework since I am home. I am expected to do all the guy house requirements. I am expected to work full time remodeling the house. There is no consideration given that we now have 5 kids and not 3. That those kids are older and create continuous wear and tear that requires repair. We now have 4 cars instead of 1. And the house is 100 years old and requires continuouse maintainence. The fact is that my old salery provided ample $$$ to hire any repairs that were needed but now since we have only one smaller salary my time is taken up in always fixing broken things.

I have no time. How can I ever expect to have free time to run, paddle or ride.

I think I will get a job. I makes perfect sense and no sense at all. David will at least get day care and exposure to other kids and activities. But any job I get, will not provide much funds beyond daycare. But maybe I can save a bit to hire out the repairs. Maybe the housework will be split. Maybe I could run on my lunch hour. Maybe I will have another beer.

Monday, March 08, 2010

Working on the kitchen Thought I could just patch this wall but it turns out that I needed to clean it down to the wood wall. Notice the wood planks that the walls were build with. then then just wallpapered over them. Four or five layers of wall paper and paint. And that was before they hung drywall on top of that probably in the seventies or early eighties.

Took half a day to clean it down. Didn't get a before pic just a work in progress pics.

Mathew and I hung the new drywall. This place is a freekin funhouse without a square angle or wall in the place and nothing is level. rombus or paralellagram if you are lucky but most often just a quadralateral. I'm making Mathew and Sarah practice their geometry.

One more wall and I can start the nasty job of sanding. Only bits and pieces at a time as we need to use the kitchen every night.

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

The pruning is now officially finished. Spring is arriving early this year. It has been very warm and buds are breaking. It was getting a bit too late to finish but I did anyway. Trimmed the lavendard like a hedge because it will produce more flowers this year and finished the last apple tree. I got some grass seed to overseed from costco and some wet and forget which is supposed to clean up moss from my concrete and roof. I will give it a try soon.

I aslo go started mudding the kitchen. i am going to take it a wall at a time. Every wall requires detailed fixing from years of abuse. I will be inside working on the walls around the downstairs fixing and painting whenever it is raining outside.

When it is nice....Time to rip out the deck.

Lord Cromwell

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Today was a good day on the Desert Island. That's wacky family Rogers for all you who aren't in the know. After a number of days of dry sunny weather, we were able to burn all the branches from this winter's trimming. It took most of the day and the neighbor from across Hales Passage didn't call the fire departnent on my this time.

Good times and after a hard days work weenies and brews for all...except for the young ones, they only got brews.

We roasted the weenies on the embers from the day's work on green apple water sprouts, nice and straight. and only all beef hot dogs for me. Non of those spamlike mixed meat nastydogs.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Beautiful weather today. Spent all day putting the clubhouse together. The thing is a monster. We finished most of it. Still a little staining to finish and I ran out of roofing materials so I still have half the roof to finish. Also, I have an old outdoor blind that I will use for a door and some window shades.

The big toy was given to us when our church was getting rid of it. The windows are from a blown out section of our greenhouse.

The kids helped get the walls up on the platform and get the roof erected. This picture shows the walls together and the end rafters in place.

Now we have the roof on and the tar paper laid

Windows in and Sarah is sizing it up.

David has woken up from his nap and checking out the new fun house.

View from the street. It is just a matter of time before the county govnmt comes by to tell me I can't do what I just done. Or some nose in yer business neighbor will call thw authorities.

Still need to stain the upper triangles and exposed rafters but it is pretty sharp. the neighbors will have all weekend to get a good look at her. All the tree ends where there are stubs are where he cut my tree back. Well now he can look at the fun house instead of my tree.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The four walls of Kevin's Krazy Klubhouse are finished. Mathew is applying the stain. I had Mathew do a little figuring for practise to sort out where to cut the notches for the roof beams. We are doing a simple 90 degree roof. Makes the figuring much easier. Mathew has been throwing the hammer a bit and hit his thumb once or twice.

We need to cut the rafters and the plywood for the roof. Pretty easy work. We want everything ready to go before we assemble it on the big toy. The neighbor should be thoroughly pissed. This is payback for him putting his heat pump outside my kitchen window. This thing is going to be massive. I have some old glass out of the greenhouse that we will use for windows. The wife asked if I am going to bolt it down so it doesn't blow away. She really has no idea what is going on here. The thing will probably weigh 500lbs. I am a bit worried that the big toy platform might collapse under the weight.

We will get the final supplies after Ash Wednesday services tomorrow and should
have it assembled tomorrow. Lent begins tomorrow

Sunday, February 14, 2010

New coop is done

Friday, February 12, 2010


Continues. The circular saw arrived and I have been putting it to good work.

The countertops are done and sheetrock has been hung on the ceiling. It is the top priority inside project. Time to mud, sand, repeat. Then I paint the kitchen, living and dining rooms and finish with a bunch of molding. I think I will hire out the floor refinishing.

Outside I have almost got the new chicken coop finished. The big toy is finished and ready for the clubhouse to be built.

I have finished most of the trimming. I have planted a himalayan birch as a screen between me and my neighbor. I caught him trimming my tree and he asked if I wanted it cut down. My answer is to plant another tree right next to it. Another neighbor is considering my request to plant an orchard in their field so that we will have lots of apples for cider in the fall. Lots of weeding left to do.

I have made tons of house repair money selling my old stuff on craigslist. If I haven't used it in a couple of years, i am selling it. I also sold 5 of the necky's on CL.

Pictures coming when I get the camera fixed. Don't forget valentines day.
More Marriage Advice

Love is patient,
love is kind.
It is not ,jealous is not pompous,
it is not inflated,
it is not rude,
it does not seek its own interests,
it is not quick tempered,
it does not brood over injury,
it does not rejoice over wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth.

It bears all things,
believes all things,
hopes all things,
endures all things.

Love never fails.

Tough words to live by. Marriage isn't always easy. It wasn't meant to be.

Monday, January 25, 2010

All of my life I have worked in teams with other working towards one goal or another. team of meat cutters on a line, team of auditors auditing a company, team of traders on a desk, adventure racing team.

Now I spend most of my days by alone working on projects around the house. I have david all day and the other kids in the early morning and late afternoon. Life is alot different. I spend alot of time looking at the water or the mountains.

Enoy it while you have it. Now back to sanding drywall

Thursday, January 21, 2010

I took my wife to Lake Quinault lodge for her birthday. It was a surprise as she likes the beach. It was a great place. With a nice great room and fire to read or play games near. It was definitely worth it and I would recommend it to anybody. It was kinda surreal. We were hanging out playing cards watching the other couples in the room. Must of been about 10-12 other couples all doing the same thing, about the same age, etc. As I sat there I thought how odd it would be if there were two guys there as a couple. It would just seem out of place.

As I sat there eating breakfast looking out over the lake I remembered how I once heard that 99% of all people who visit national parks never get a mile from the road. I used to take pleasure in watching those people and knowing that I was going out to cross this or circumnavigate that and get out in the wild country. Now I am one of those 97% looking out wondering what is out there or what it is like or could I doo that.

Friday, January 15, 2010

One project done and one on the way. the first three pictures are the kitchen ready for drywall and cabinets. The last three are Laura's room done except for a little touch up paint.

One project done one on the way to being done.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A friend gave me this today. Something to always keep in mind.

A happy wife is a happy life!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

I am the luckiest man alive. It doesn't matter what I'm doing or where i'm at, any alternative is not as good as what is presented before me

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Some can not tell you what makes them happy, what they want from life, or how they want to spend the precious few years that they have. They bumble their way through. Unhappy, miserable and not very pleasant to be around.
I want to raise my kids to be good human beings. I am not perfect and I make many mistakes along the way. I want my kids to be happy and successful in whatever they choose to do. I am their protector, educator, their mentor, their advisor and maybe someday their counselor. I am not often their friend. There are oftentimes things that need to be said or done that a friend couldn't or wouldn't do at their ages.
I like to explore. There are so many places that I want to go and see in the wilderness. I want to spend many days paddling or traversing mountains, or riding my bike. I think I was born in the wrong time. I like to watch the sunrise from the top of a high mountain with friends and knowing that at that moment there is nowhere else in the world that I would rather be.
There are many other things that I enjoy, what to learn and do before it it too late. I need to remind myself that every day might be my last. I also need solitude. I can ride my bike for hours by myself with my thoughts. And when I am done, everything else in my life seems so much more important. At the end I so much want that long isolation to be over and retun to my family.
I raced for a number of years. I was drawn to something I love. I found great friends who were as passionate as I about being the best and spending great times in the outdoors. We helped each other through tough times and saw some beautiful sights. We pushed each other and ourselves to be better than we could individually.
I am taking a step back from that for a while. Many other things in my life have been put on hold because of my drive and determination. For the foreseable future I will be staying home working on projects and plans that have been put on the back burner. Hopefully those things can be done soon or when all the kids are gone in 10-12years I will set outfor the ultimate adventure.
Right now I am cleaning, remodelling, selling stuff that I haven't used in many years. Trying to simplify. The kids are up and off by 9. I spend a few hours doing carpentry and spend the rest of the day doing other chores that keep a house with 2 adults and 5 kids humming along. Always ending with sweeping the floor at the end of the day. I made a list and it is huge, I am not sure how long it will take. I am very close to finishing the remodel of Laura's bedroom. Then I will finish the kitchen remodel.
I feel like a caged animal but I know that in due time I will be out again