We’ve continued to work, and in fact I’ve taken a lot of photos with the good camera so I can publish several projects once I get some time (ha!). Until then, I have some shots from the cell phone that I can put up fairly easily. I’ll see if I can cover the stuff we’re currently occupied with. Last week we started to really focus on the upstairs. We have an incredible amount of work to do everywhere, but since we need to get the second floor livable quickly, that’s where things are happening.

First of all, we installed a new pre-hung door for the bathroom. All of the interior doors had been mangled pretty badly by the previous occupants, who saw fit to reverse them all so that they opened out of the rooms and into the hallway. Knowing from previous experience how awful hanging doors is, we bought a cheapo pre-hung door. It went in much more easily than mortising out a new hinge and trying in vain to level the awful door frame. The downside is it left a rather large hole above the door, because the doorways are much taller than a standard 80″ door.


Sarah’s parents came down Sunday to help us and while Sarah and her mom washed the roach crap from the door and window trim that had been taken down, Sarah’s dad got the stove outlet installed, going through a couple of Dremel bits cutting through the nigh-indestructible tile. The only remaining wiring to run will be for the range hood above the stove, which fortunately doesn’t involve cutting through any more tile.

I took on the back bedroom, washing the walls and then spackling the exposed top edge of drywall that went around the room. It’s been hot recently, being mid July, and without air conditioning in the house it’s sweaty work. I went through three shirts on Sunday. After I finished the circumference of the room I repaired the wall in the closet, where they had seen fit to install drywall over the brackets for a shelf, and over the trim of the door they were covering. After a lot of mudding and edging, that too was looking a bit better. The rest of the closet still needs to be cleaned, as it currently looks something like Shelob’s lair.

Getting cleaner

We installed some make-shift trim in the kitchen, cut some more to put above the bathroom door due to the aforementioned five-inch gap between the top of the pre-hung door and the top of the door frame. Dean lent us his nailer and compressor which is helping it go up much more easily.

I’ve been trying to get things ready to paint, but every day we work on the house it seems further away. Yesterday Sarah started caulking the trim, and we bought another pre-hung door for the back bedroom. I got the old door frame out, but we still have to hang the new one. Sarah’s been painting the new trim pieces we bought and washing the door frames behind the trim so that we can put it back up.


Once we have all the trim pieces back up and the door installed, and all of the trim sealed with caulk we need to do taping and masking. I bought a paint sprayer because I want to go through the painting quickly, but it also means that everything needs to be ready to paint at once. A couple weeks ago I wanted to paint on this past Sunday. Then I just wanted to get all the taping done by Sunday. Now’s it’s Tuesday and I’m hoping we can start taping by the end of the week.

We have flooring to repair in the dining room, tile to grout in the bathroom, trim work nearly everywhere, some finishing work on the edges of the kitchen floor, the rest of the bedroom closet needs to be spackled, and I’m sure I’m leaving things out. We’ll get there, but it takes time, more time than I ever expect.

We had the structural engineer out yesterday. He’s going to get us a quote in the next few days. The exterminator is back out on Friday, along with the water department to install a new meter. Saturday Sarah’s sister is coming down with a trailer so we can pick up a stove and refrigerator from Dean’s place. I’ve taken off three days next week to make a press to be done by the end of the month, but we don’t yet know when we’re moving or how long until we have the condo rented.

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