Friday, July 25, 2008

Project Updates

The Behbeh: Ultrasound this morning... the critter has all the applicable parts that I've come to expect from a baby in utero, with the notable addition of boy parts!

You heard me! A BOY!

Don't get me wrong, I would be very pleased indeed to get me a fourth member of the Chaos Posse, and frankly a girl would make life easier on so many fronts. On top of that my friend Mama D just put up some pics of her brand new baby girl that tweaked my heart something fierce.

... but sometimes a mama knows what she knows, and I have felt the presence of a particular spirit waiting patiently for his turn for several years now, and if he didn't come to me biologically, then I would have to find him some other way. I like this way.

Feels complete.

Now I challenge Dadguy to come up with a better name than the one I have picked out. Sorry Birdie... We will not be naming the kid London.

The Basement: Picking at it bit by bit. Project was interrupted by a family trip up to Bear Lake, a fun-in-the-sun party that I am still not recovered from. Worst sunburn I've had in years.

Dadguy's Project: This project has actually been in the works for quite some time... starting with the gearing up for this specific project, and the others to come like it. A few months back we purchased a laptop and determined that we would also get the newest incarnation of iPhone when they came out. Dadguy was going to try his hand at designing and coding applications for the iPhone, eventually with the intention of selling his creations from the iPhone store. It has been a rollercoaster, a very informative rollercoaster ride. If you care to read up on all of his doings you can check his developers blog for his first creation, Geopher Lite.

Frankly, while I have known that Dadguy was this cool for years now, I am impressed with his vision and tenacity. I think that so much of him, his personality, philosophy and ethics really shines through in this first endeavor, and all the hurdles that he had to jump through. If you have any interest in Dadguy, his projects or geocaching? Check this out.

If you have one of the new iPhones? Go spend two bucks!

Seriously... this newest stint of wing stretching has been great to watch, but hard to live. We have had to give up some family time, couple time... and I personally have had to put in more parenting time in at a physically rough part of my life, with this fourth baby on the way, and in my decrepit state. Oh yeah! And the basement! And the yard! And the church callings! And the family life! GAAHHHHH! The hours have been longer, and the initial financial investment has been significant (at least for our budget!) without any guarantee of a return. The ups and downs have been emotionally rough on both of us... and I wouldn't trade any of it!

And that's good, because it looks like he's just gearing up. It's an exciting time for our family!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Sunday Pics: The Tour Le Grande

Hooookay! Did I promise y'all a tour? I think I may have. I think I may have also pissed off a few of y'all by my reluctance to get to the money shots earlier this week.

Tough patooties. This has been a little traumatic for me, and I am a delicate flower.

If you would like a closer look at any picture, just click on it.

Come with me now, on a magical journey through a series of once magical and echo-ey rooms that are now just rooms. Granted, they are rooms that have just doubled our living space, so yeah... there is THAT magical aspect of them. But first things first, let's head on downstairs.

When you arrive at the bottom landing, if you turn to your left you will see this lovely sight...

Bear left from approximately the middle of this first room and you will see the beginning of the hallway, the door to the media closet, and the entrance to the Love Den of the Dadguy a.k.a. the Gameroom. The cute girlie in pink is just the spokesmodel, pay her no mind.

This shot was taken while the photographer was standing next to the Twilight Zone Pinball machine. That Defender cabinet is actually a Multi-Arcade-Machine-Emulator, or MAME machine. If ever there was an arcade game that was fun? It's loaded on this baby!

On the other side of the MAME is a Magic Sword arcade game... that will probably get sold to make room if Dadguy ever gets his dream-come-true of an Addams Family pinball machine. An event that I am now realizing will likely come to fruition before my own dream-come-true of new furniture. Say La Vee... in the end it will all work out. It better.

Again with the spokesmodel.

So, c'mon with me now down the hall way here...

The first door on you right will be the laundry room. Woooo. Eventually (if the guy ever wants to get paid) there will be a shelf on those boards over the washer and dryer. Eventually.

Here is the bathroom, the second door on your right. Obviously it still needs a little work, but we are aiming for the first of August to have it up and running. The tile flooring was just grouted yesterday afternoon, and needs a coat of sealer yet. Then the tub surround goes up next weekend, and the plumber comes in the week after that to hook up the workings.

We hope.

But this is Reality in Chaos, so we'll see what really happens.

Third door on your right is the currently very over-burdened cold storage. In between the shelving is stuffed a number of pieces of furniture that will be making their way out into the household. Later. When we get around to it.

This shoy was taken from the doorway... but I see no sense in overwhelming your eyes with more food storage and a bunch more crap.

Well heck yeah! Let's get all the ugly out of the way here! This is the first door on your left, it is the closet under the stair, also known as BOO! Dadguy knows what everything here is. I think. Let's just keep moving along, shall we?

Second door on the right is the guest bedroom, sewing room, eventually one of the girls' room. This is the last room of our circle.

This room has the larger windows, and is actually part of what is usually finished as the family room in the model of house that we have. It is situated directly below the front room upstairs.

We actually had to break down a framed and rocked in wall (along the left hand side of the stairwell going down, where the banister now is) in order to get the stairs to open out into the family room in the way that we finished it. Because of the way we chose to do it, we ended up with a cold storage (has no windows) instead of an extra bedroom. But I have been in houses that are finished the other way, and I cannot repent of our decisions. I love the way that we have done it too well (the banister, the archway, the open feel) to feel badly about that lost bedroom.

In this shot you can also admire some adventurous Hollyhocks growing up out of the window well.

So now you turn and realize that the guest room has a door that also leads into the family room, passing along the bottom of the stairs! A loop! My favorite! Yay!

Ooop! I think we are done... there goes that girlie!

The End

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Ode To A Carpeted Basement

I had no idea, no idea the the act of laying carpeting in your rooms would vault you from the realms of dreams, into mundane reality. Truly, how could I know? I mean, intellectually I knew that once carpeted we could begin the trickle down of our upstairs life down into the newly formed rooms, but I didn't really know.

We had you framed, your bones showing the basement that you would become... and you retained every bit of imaginary beauty and promise. Then as you lay fallow but for the stringing of electrical and networking tendons, that year or so you never lost your magic. As we slowly, over the years purchased lights and hardware for you, made decisions, and imagined how you would be... still you eluded us in you un-being. The sheet rock and texture gave you a sculptural quality; an almost third dimensional, but still ghost like reality. The finish carpentry delineated you even more, but honestly... you were still in an untouchable, state of non-existence to me! Paint? No, not even close.

Just one afternoon of two men laying a horizontal textured surface, and my lists of all the thing to be done before you would become, has become a list of inconsequentials. A list of nit-pickery nothings.

As I walked down your now padded and carpeted stairs and entered your rooms.... ROOMS! I was shocked to my core that all of the dreams and maybes of your creation had been made reality, and that they had indeed been ripped out of the ether and made into rooms. Empty rooms smelling of paint and new carpeting; They had become rooms, complete and finite. Rooms like every empty room of every new apartment or house that I have ever moved into.

The dreams that had been forming over the years of your planning and creation are now locked in place, like a butterfly caught and displayed in solid lucite.

Don't get me wrong, your empty rooms waiting to be filled and lived in are exciting to me in their own way... the flow of our family life will be forever changed with these additions. But the state of un-being and anticipation is gone now, and I can see how home improvement can be an addiction. The thrill of the chase is over.

It has been ever since Monday, and I still cannot bear to take your picture. You seem naked to me. Now that you ARE and have being, your emptiness seems to need covering, filling, living before I expose you.


To the Internets: Perhaps this Sunday I will be able to give y'all that promised tour.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Sunday Pic: Progress

Y'all... I hurt. I have tweaked, pulled or torqued something in my upper back/neck/shoulder region by vastly overdoing it yesterday. I cannot turn my head all the way to either side, but I also cannot yet repent, because we are ready. READY! For the carpet to be laid tomorrow morning. Against all odds, we are now ready. Mind you, it didn't have to be this way, this close of a race. The guy that we had contracted to do not only the finish carpentry, but the painting and tile in the bathroom (a series of jobs that he assured us would take one single week and a day to complete?... six weeks later finally completed the carpentry and paint leg-o-the-journey on Thursday and promptly went out of town.

And then the paint dried all the way and we realized. Was not OK. And then we freaked. I believe I used the eff bomb. Several times. I had already paid him.

So Saturday morning we hired the neighborhood uber-sitter and proceeded to roller coat the entire basement with another coat of the white that we had chosen. Not difficult, as we had five and a half extra gallons of the color (mixed and un-returnable) left over, that the guy had had us purchase for the job. Luckily, as anyone who has painted before knows... the roller coating part is the fast and fairly enjoyable part of painting.... it's the masking and cutting part that takes time, is tedious and generally bites.

Ceiling, walls doors and trim were all same color, no carpeting or furniture to hassle with... the job was pretty fast, but it has made all the difference. But then we also had to scrape and shop-vac the entire basement floor in preparation to the carpet coming in. These are not a combination of jobs that a pregnant woman really ought to tackle all in one day. So today I pay. And pay. And pay. I'm betting that Dadguy is paying as well... but as he was up and gone by six-thirty for his church meetings today, it's a little tough to say for sure.

Yeah. Pretty sure he's paying.

He also got the lights up in the family room, one of the bedrooms (what will be our game room), and one of the hallway lights. Looking good, yeah?

Still left to do, but not in this order:
  • switch plates
  • plugs and plates
  • smoke alarms
  • cable and network plates
  • phone jack plates
  • vent covers
  • umm... oh yeah... the carpet
  • lights in closets, bedroom, hallway, bathroom
  • bathroom tile
  • tub surround
  • install toilet and sink
  • doorknobs
holy cow... we are never gonna finish. We will need blinds for a total of five windows too. If we are cool, it will be most all of it done by August fourth when my parents come to visit. At the tectonic pace that we have been going? Not a lot of hope. Sorry Ma... but at least there are no spiders! Seriously... the worst I have seen down there in months has been the 'tato-bug we found trundling across the concrete yesterday, and as he was hustled out by Pearl in her hot, grubby paw... I doubt we will be seeing much more of him!

The color is Behr's "Silk Pillow." This shot highlights the lovely texture.

A preview of the carpeting.

The way that we finished our basement, at the base of the stairs you can either take a left into the family room, or a right into a bedroom. The bedroom also has a door that opens into the hallway which at the arched end attaches to the family room. The floor plan is a big circle. I love circles and loops. Next week I will take y'all on the extended tour of our basement circuit. It'll be fun... if you like that sort of thing!

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Sunday Pic: Basement

Piffle dee pfeffernuese. So there is not nearly so much going on in the basement progress as I thought there would be. The guy we have contracted, spent an average of a half an hour a day down there this past week. To be fair we added the equivalent of one doors worth of trim and one shelf in the laundry room to his docket... but the truth of the matter is that we have been in a painting holding pattern since Thursday. As in... my laundry room is down there, and I have thought for sure each day that the painting was starting THAT DAY... so no laundry has been happening. At all.

Hello Mount Washmore!

What am I complaining about? I haven't even managed to fold and put away the four baskets of clean clothes that sit at the foot of my bed.

So... a few pics just as I promised...

I know, the unfinished laundry room. Riveting.

In other news... there is a decided lack of news. All I seem to be able to think or talk about is this pregnancy. I am starting to bore the hoopty out of myself, and it's all just TMI if you ask me. But don't ask me. Because I
will share the TMI goodness.

I will mention the fact that I have gone from a woman with the appearance of being six to seven months pregnant, to that of a woman with a mere four month belly...

Dude... my six year old noticed. The behbeh is still plenty active, so no worries, it's just one of those goofy pregnancy tidbits that no one else really cares all that much about.. Except for me. And mostly because I cannot keep my maternity pants up any more... AND it has heralded my usual pregnancy tailbone/pelvic/hip pinched nerves and pain. And I thought that I was getting out of that party this time around.

Fine... it's worth it, see?

As cute and as goofy as ever.