Sunday, October 28, 2012

a big step ahead

and a huge amount of frustration....... The big step this week was the arrival of the countertops. They were installed on monday, with only a little hiccup. Good thing we have corian. It could be taken back to the shop and have an inch added to it. Had that been granite.......up the creek. (we have the russians to thank for that - they altered the island AFTER the template had been made. Not a lot, but enough...)
This was a huge development, because it allowed the plumber to put in the faucets and the dishwasher. One more step ahead. On monday, the tile guys will come to do the backsplash, finish the fireplace and bathrooms, and we're going to ask them nicely to put up a bit of backsplash in the laundry room. The frustration???? The russians, of course. Our finish carpenters don't really seem to have any sense of responsibility, speed, we need to get this done? You name it. After telling me that they would be back on monday, they were no-shows. Our general said "they had something they had to do". Tuesday, they were here bright and early, but only because the general was meeting them here. At the end of the day, they packed up all of their tools and told me they'd be back wednesday "around lunch", which meant never. Thursday, after a stern talking to from the general, they were back again, but on friday they had "something they had to do, AGAIN". They did get the interior doors put in, except the ones that are missing hardware, and some of the trim, but not nearly enough. I'd guess they're about 10percent done after 2 days of work.
The idea of possibly moving in before thanksgiving is quickly slipping away in a fit of frustration. There is still SO much to be done, most of which, according to the general comes "last". There's NO WAY that they'll be finished and inspected in 3 weeks, especially if they only work 2 days a week. Will they be here tomorrow? Probably not, they haven't worked on a Monday yet. (allergic? me too). At least we can count on tile guy. He'll be here with bells on! And the plumber, who is spending a bit of time here and there, even though he doesn't have to quite yet. The shutoff valves are all done for everything, the kitchen is done, the non-master bathrooms have faucets, the showers are in, and the "behemoth" bath tub is assembled and in place. You just gotta love a plumber who doesn't like to work in the rain and the mud. (he'd rather work inside on our job where it's warm - fine by me)
What will we get this week? Tile guy, for sure, maybe the plumber will get cold again and come do the bathtub faucet, hopefully the sheetrockers will come and finish their touch up stuff, (they're holding things up), the solatubes will get their covers, the deck MIGHT get started, as well as the sidewalks. And, if the russians grace us with thier presence, some trim MIGHT get done. I swear, if they work all 5 days this week, I'll pass out. Oh, and, I have 2 appointments for window blind quotes, and the washer and dryer will FINALLY be delivered on friday. OK, exactly when IS last? It's a looonnnggg list......

Friday, October 19, 2012

now THAT's progress!!!

FINALLY!!!!!! Visible and measurable progress. Our week started a bit slow. Monday brought us the drywallers doing some touch-up and the concrete guy figuring out the driveway, porch and sidewalk to the house. On tuesday, the russian contingent returned to finish the floors. They worked until midnight, but they're done, and they're beautiful! great room
master bedroom
On wednesday, the glass shower doors were installed and the driveway work continued with gravel deliveries and more forms built. Thursday brought the return of the "other" russians, the finish carpenters and they got to work on finishing the kitchen uppers.....
The driveway was also poured and finished.
Friday was just as productive. After covering all the newly laid and cleaned floors, the guys got right to work on the built in bookcases...
and then spent the afternoon wrapping up the island so that the countertops can be installed monday.
All-in-all, this was the busiest week we've pretty much EVER seen and we're very happy about that. It looks like the momentum might just continue into next week as well. Monday at 9, the countertops will be delivered and installed. The finish guys and the plumber are both supposed to be here to work on trim and showers. Tuesday, the electrician will be back to put in the under cabinet lighting. Don't know WHAT the rest of the week will bring, but once the countertops are done, the tile backsplash in the kitchen can be installed, as well as the bathroom backsplashes and the fireplace can also be finished now that the floors are done. We have an appointment tomorrow with the painter to check out colors for the concrete floors, and a couple of window blind folks will be stopping by to give us an estimate as well. There's still a BUNCH left to do. Sheetrockers need to finish texturing their fixes, painting to be done everywhere. TRIM (that 4-letter word), Deck on the back and sidewalks (UGH - thank you city planners) in the front. I saw somewhere that there are 34 days to black friday. That thanksgiving move in is looking promising. Turkey and hand trucks anyone? I'll buy the wine!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

We're getting there.....

This was probably the busiest week in a LONG time, although not without it's frustrations. On monday, the tile guys returned back from vacation! Go tile guys!!! They finished the master, and got to work on the jack and jill.
Tuesday, they continued to grout what they'd done the day before, and I got my opportunity to be "picky homeowner" when I hand picked the tiles for the fireplace. The dragonflies are up! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them. They also put in the countertops for the built-ins next to the fireplace.
Wednesday is when it all blew up, quite literally. I haven't seen so many vehicles here since the city hooked up the water. (that consisted of 5 trucks, 9 guys, and 2 that actually worked) From right to left here.....the general contractor, the tile guys, the electrician, some russians (floors) and the gutter guys (yes, we have gutters, and not a moment too soon). Everyone was working on their own thing, and most were done by noon, leaving the russians to totally mess up the place.
The started sanding the concrete floors without covering a thing. There is currently a 35 gal. garbage can FULL of concrete dust in the garage. It looked like mt saint helens blew up INSIDE the house. All over the new cabinets, tile, light fixtures, switches, you name it, it was full of gritty concrete dust. Check out the windows, that's dust. Needless to say, this is where I got to be "cranky homeowner". I got out the g'bee voice and expressed my displeasure. The russians came screaming down with shop vacs and cleaned up as much as they could, but, we're going to be living with concrete dust the rest of our lives. It's very pervasive, hard to get rid of, and gritty. Thanks (NOT).
No one worked on thursday, except tile guy, who was finishing his grouting. Friday brought us the return of the russians. They finished sanding, (this time they wet sanded everything. HELLO!!!), and started actually putting down the hardwood. I'm still not convinced they know what they're doing, and that scares me, but what they got done does look good, if you look past all their trash and crap they left laying around.
They still have a LONG way to go, though. I'm pretty sure they're going to run out of glue, so that'll be a stall. Hopefully they'll have enough flooring. There seems to be a lot of waste and that makes me a little scared........ Next week, wood floors continue, monday, the sheetrockers will be back to do some touch-up and fixes, on wed, the glass shower doors will be installed, and the rest of the parts for the kitchen will be in. Hopefully, they'll start working on the trim. Everyone seems to be waiting for floors and trim. Painter guy will probably be doing the laundry room floor, and the washer and dryer are due on friday. PHEW! I hope half of that happens.....we'll see.....

Friday, October 5, 2012

you gotta love a guy with a bulldozer!

This week, it was all about moving dirt. On Thursday, bulldozer guy pulled up with his big-boy toys (3 large pieces of equipment) and started to push the dirt around. He worked all day and was able to do a great job of flattening out the property, covering the trenches (FINALLY!), and preparing for our 176' sidewalk to nowhere.
See that giant rock there? It's about the size of a volkswagen bug. We asked him to move it on the other side of the driveway so that the landscapers could eventually put it in place. There was one time he flipped it with the dozer and it shook the whole house. THIS house, not the new one. It's a big one (and all white granite) We also had some kitchen action. The island was set into place in preparation for the countertop installers. (unfortunately, they cancelled their appt. - next week, I guess)
The electrician was also running around, working on details....he installed the speakers for the sound system, a bunch of dimmers, timers and switches, and the pendant lights for the island. (I know, it's missing a light bulb)
The biggest development of the week was getting the floor heat on! It needs to "cook" for about a week, and then the hardwood floors can be installed. I have to say, I can hardly wait to live with this floor heat. Right now, on the first day, it's about 75degrees in there and if you stand in one place for a while, your feet get warm. It won't be QUITE like that when we live there (that's a bit too hot), but it's really a nice, dry heat. And, yes, this contraption that looks like that mousetrap game you had when you were a kid, is the heating system in the laundry room. No worries, it's going to be built in with cabinets.
One more thing....our Morris chair is here! It's going over to the house in the crate. It's beautiful, though.
So, finally, all-in-all, there was SOME progress this week. Not enough in my book and the russians are still MIA, but things are picking up. Next week........tile guy will be back on monday to finish the master, jack and jill shower, and built-in tops, and to measure for the kitchen backsplash. The russians SHOULD be here on wednesday to start the floor installation. Once the floors are done, then the next step is trim, and EVERYONE can finish. Fingers crossed.....AGAIN!