Variety Pack and Updates! Woo hoo!Wednesday, September 07, 2016
So yes indeedily-doo, it's another variety pack with the added bonus of updates! All in one! Who woulda thought?!
Before I get down to it, the final days, hours, and minutes are tick-tocking away on the Amara Interior Blog Awards voting window. Please, please please please come vote for Flipping the Flip by September 9 at 5 pm GMT! That'd be ridiculously awesome and I'll be eternally grateful. And please share too (beg beg). Sharing is caring!
The three day holiday weekend came and zip, went. Sigh. Seriously, the quickest route back to work is a three day weekend, amiright?
I did not get nearly as much stuff done as I had last year, oh ok, oh dear, two years ago oh my, oops, or ok last year. But Mike and I did give Finn a bath then we three lazed on the deck under the awning allll afternoon into the early evening on Sunday. That...that cannot be beat.
Neither could the moment when Mike proffered his assistance with the upcoming stair project. With the cheap a** crappy carpet removal. Staples! And the new runner installation. He said it. Out loud. And now it's in print.
|Super cool, a rainbow without rain that evening. Had never seen that before! Mike has, he said; he's cooler.|
So what did I do? Not much. Or I should say not much house related. Or none actually. Sad. I suck. Hey, I had life stuff to catch up on! So here are some things I took care of prior to starting on The Exorcist.....:
Finally fixed the back annoying security door latching issue, and its deadbolt not locking issue. How? Rotary tool.*
|Tried the lipstick trick. Since I rarely wear it, something should.|
|Lipstick only kinda worked. But enough so.|
A wee bit of grinding with the rotary tool and the door now catches and the deadbolt latches. Yay.
|Nice. Soooooo attractive. But hey, it works now. Eyeroll.|
|Lock gap. Not water tight.|
|All sealed, no water seeping in.|
|Found these cans of rubberized spray at the Chicago ReStore for a mere two bucks!|
|Turns out it's by the same people who made the concrete sealer I dislike immensely. Hm.|
|Spurt. Spew everywhere. Don't do as I did.|
Drywall is up, poorly, in the main floor bathroom. Truly a work in progress, cough. Sigh.
|Hey. It's drywall. Done poorly. Yay.|
Oh, I won some itty bitty string lights in the String Contest over on Instructables (thank you for voting!! Gosh, I ask you to vote often, don't I?). Since it gets dark on the deck, I decided to install them under the railings.
The battery pack, as you can see, is quite large, and with three double A's in there, heavy. As a temporary solution, one I ahem, have not returned to, I used bungie cords. Heh.
But then I pilot drilled tiny holes and added vinyl covered hooks* to hold the lights up.
At the very end, I twisted the wire around a last hook. I'll have to get you an at-dusk or shortly after photo so you can see the pretty little LED twinkle lights all lit up. It's cute. We like 'em. Smiles!
How did I win in the String Contest? With the puppy gate! Which is working wonderfully, despite Finn occasionally putting one paw up on it when he's riled. Mike kindly restrung it one day as the paracord stretched and drooped. And the wood has warped a smidge so I'll rethink framing if there's a next time.
But it's great and it does the job and it looks cool while doing it. Now we need a gangway gate. Oy.
Oh so you're probably wondering where we put all the dirt from our yard excavations. Right? Right. Some of it went under the deck actually but not too much otherwise we would have created new and different flooding issues.
The remainder went into the gangway between our garage and the neighbor to the east. Yeah, maybe not hugely ideal since it's got a concrete walkway, albeit cracked, but we had nowhere else to go.
To block the dirt, or clay it was at this point, from eroding back into the yard, I built a thingie. Ran over to Menards, snagged a pressure treated 2x then discovered that they'll cut stick lumber out in their wood yard. Suh-weeet! Free! Suh-weeeter! So the very nice guy cut to my requested dimensions.
Got home, dug up some leftover deck screws,* found a star shaped bit that fits them, and made two L shapes. Heh, yes, using the fancy folding garage workbench! See?!
I also made some wood spikes as I wasn't in the mood to pay ten bucks for a large bundle I'll only use two of.
Soooo, plopped one L down and doh. How did I mis-measure?! Of course I mis-measured. Heh.
Pounded in the spikes, or one and then split the other.
Nothin' dabs of Gorilla glue* can't fix. Heh. Zip tie clamp, moving on. Stack the second L and screw the L's to the spikes. Okey doke.
|Done! -ish anyway.|
|Ah, creative reuse of leftovers.|
...the inspector arrived, and it was done.
The dumb rain barrel has made an reemergence here, the hope being to put a gutter across the deck side of the garage and have the water dump into it. Heh, I do have all the gutter parts.....
|Dumb rain barrel. Yet I still try with you.|
It seems we don't get gentle all day soaker rains here in Chicago anymore; it's either deluge or sprinkles, deluge or sprinkles. Yay global warming.
So after a recent deluge we were good. The next day another deluge and water pooled on top. Same exact event a week later. It drains but slower than I anticipated. But, I will say, the yard floods less deeply so that in itself, the whole goal of the project, makes it worthwhile.
The plants? The hotly anticipated plants?? In early spring:
Just the other day:
|He's a Mommy's Boy all right, heh, always always following me.|
I have a few recipes on deck in the hopes that they'll be better than the vast majority of the ones we've tried, but here are a couple that Mike expressed positive sentiments about: Slow Cooker Chicken Mole and Slow Cooker Creole Chicken and Sausage. Probably because they still had flavor left in 'em after hours of cooking and got better the next day.
Been using Mike's thoroughly brilliant idea for the slow cooker: a light timer.* Brilliant!
And in case you are slow cooker-less or are slow cooker-don't care, gimme a baking recipe, try these cupcakes: Buttermilk Chocolate Chip Crumb Cupcakes.
All righty, hope to catch you soon! And don't forget to come vote for Flipping the Flip!
Happy Birthday early to my mom!
*The rotary tool, grout sealer, wallpaper, vinyl coated screw in hooks, Gorilla glue, landscape cloth, deck screws, and light timer are Amazon affiliate links. Mwah, thanks! Please see the "boring stuff" tab for more info.