11 April, 2010

Sara, Slate, 'n' Stuff

Sara arrived last Wednesday.  She's here to visit me before she heads out to Valdez for the summer.  Since there hasn't even been a walkway in the spare bedroom for *ages* now, we were trying to decide what to do.  Option 1: She can sleep on the couch in the Construction Zone - pros are she's close so I get to spend as much time as possible with her and I can spend the night in my own bed (especially on work days); cons are there's no privacy (for her or the cats, since she brought her two and there's my two) and she's subject to the time schedule of Greg - oh! and there's no privacy.  Option 2: Board Sara, myself, and the cats (hers - mine would stay at the house) with various friends and/or family (there were a couple different options) - pros are she gets a real bed and a place of her own (with privacy); cons are working out schedules, and I'd be feeling guilty about not being around to help Greg on the house.

We left the choice up to her, and she opted to stay at the house.  It's been fantastic - extra help on the house (thanks, Sara!), no worrying about imposing on others, and I don't have to figure out how to connect my laptop to someone else's network (because it's all about me, right?).  Even the cats are settling down - still a bit of hissing and growling, but none are bald and there's no extra barf (no more than normal, anyway).  Poor Sara ends up helping us on some project or other every time she comes through.  One of these times, I'll have to make sure it's a proper "vacation" before she goes to slave away at fish camp...
The first night she was here, she helped mount the TV in it's new location and fill yet more boxes with even more stuff.  This time, we emptied the lower cabinets from what's still in the kitchen - in preparation for moving them to lay the new flooring underneath.  I really appreciate her willingness to help and her good attitude about the whole deal!!

Yesterday it was finally time to install the slate entryway for the sliding glass door.  Yet another milestone bringing us closer to completion...  YAY!!  Sara helped us lay out the tiles, pick the best ones, and rearrange until we were satisfied with how it looked.  As Sara and I were heading out to do some shopping, Greg was mixing the mortar to cement the tiles in place.  We ended up staying to watch a little longer than anticipated (and found out in the process that our kitchen fire extinguisher is empty, so I promptly picked up more while we were out and about) - mainly so I could put out any potential fires and/or Sara could perform any emergency first aid should the need arise...  since the motor for the stir paddle filled the house with smoke as it was burning out.  At least Greg was mostly finished by the time it became entirely unusable.  =)
Once the mortar was mixed (and supplemented at the end with an emergency run to the hardware store to get enough for the last bit), laying the tile seemed to go pretty smoothly.  At least, Greg didn't seem to have any problems with it, and Sara and I did fine at supervising...  I'm extremely pleased with the way it turned out - and excited to see the bamboo next to it as we progress even further.
Greg has worked hard all weekend on the house project.  When I took Sara over to visit with friends and have a nice game of Killer Bunnies, he opted to stay home and get more work done.  His goal for completion is before he leaves for training in Florida - which is two weekends from now.  Maybe I should go with this one, since my relatively arbitrary out-of-my-ass date didn't work.  What?  You mean that paying attention to the people that actually do the work (well, more than just running the Shop Vac and cleaning, anyway) may give me a more accurate timeline?  Who knew??
Now we're actually laying the bamboo again.  Another indication that we're in the homestretch...  Today Greg spent some time crunching numbers, making cuts, and working around the small spaces (like the pantry closet and doorways).  Now that he's a bit further from the wall and "custom" areas, it should go down pretty quickly.  Then it'll be a matter of getting our stuff organized and the rooms put back together again...
Jeannea will be arriving next week - so we'll have a couple days of overlap with both girls here, before Sara heads out and I get the weekend with Jeannea.  I absolutely *love* this time of year - because I get to see some of my sisters (not because it's a heatwave outside, since we've barely broken 40 a few times and still have snow).  And, well... if the project's not done, we're all happy to spend time together anyway - I already borrowed a cot for the couple nights the girls overlap.  =)

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