Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Overdue Overview

Well then, boys and girls, gather 'round for yet another bi-yearly installment of The Shim Farm News.

Part of my silence over the past few months was due to our horrific winter.  We had the, and I truly mean THE hardest, longest and coldest winter in decades.  It snowed from mid-November well into April.  We broke all kinds of records, most of them negative.  Winter got old quickly, and every post I started sounded too whiny, too "been there, done that" for my taste.  Sometimes it's best to just shut the hell up and knit like my life depended on it.

And so I did.

The above picture was taken on February 27.  That's a lot of snow, and Mother Nature wasn't done messing with us by a long-shot.

Remember the frame around the master bedroom door?  Well I'll be damned, but that bad-boy is finally complete.  After painstakingly varnishing the BC fir frame, Eric installed the Sadev hardware, and we put up a temporary plywood door.  With the price of custom-cut glass being in the "mega-ouch" territory, Eric made a plywood template so we could be sure about our dimensions.  We're dealing with some pretty tight tolerances here, so we wanted to make 110% sure we were on the right track, pun wholly intended.

Here is the mounting of the rail and hardware:
 And frame post-varnishing, I present to you, our fabulous plywood door:
I tore our formidable plastic sheet of a door off so fast that Eric's head spun.  You can see Dinaroo peaking his little face through on the side.  He's learned how to open it, but I jury-rigged a stopper on one side that's preventing him from fully opening it.

Right now, with on-going renovations upstairs, the plywood door is staying until we're finished.

It's ironic that I called our upstairs renovations "The Knotty Pine Purge".  Low and behold - what are we putting up?

You guessed it!  More knotty pine!

The only difference is the insulation, hardeeharhar.   We're going to be staining this a translucent white, and we've got our paint lady on the job, finding the best finish for the job.  Here's another angle, because I don't tire of seeing it:
In keeping with our modus operandi, we've got about a 1/8" gap between the boards because we didn't want to butt the boards up against each other.  Keeps us on our toes during the installation, dontchaknow.  Why do simple when you can do complicated?

Here's a "during" shot from 2009:
And yet another beauty-shot:
Seriously.  I could break my own arm, patting us on our backs.  Unless I see the photos, I can't fathom what we went through to get this far.  I think I've suppressed most of the work.

And because knotty pine and plywood doors aren't enough, here's some drywall for your (and my) enjoyment:
A still-life, so you can tell we don't live like Bob Vila and Martha Stewart:

That faded orange plastic drywall handle might be the best $5 Eric has ever spent.  Stabila levels are the way to go, same goes for Olfa box cutters, FatMax measuring tapes, and pretty much anything Dewalt.  Our favorite Lee Valley tool, the "Wood is Good" motivator (and constant denominator) will be gold-plated when our renovations are done.  I'll have it inscribed for Eric (To Bob.  Thanks for fixing our condemned hovel home sweet home.  Love, Martha), and we'll have a nice show-case built so we can worship it in all its glory.

Clearly, a certain amount of insanity rules this roost.  It has to.

And here we are, early July.  The corn is planted and growing.  Lots of rain, lots of sun and high, high temperatures.  Lots of arguments about air conditioning - rather - lack thereof.  (I'm getting Eric on it, trust me.  Threats have been made.  Ultimatums have been thrown around.  I might even have raised my voice an octave or four and thrown my arms to the skies.  A girl can live with plywood floors, but this cloying and oppressive heat and bayou-like humidity?  So help me dog, there's no way I'm putting up with it.  One. More. Season).  Winter is bad enough.  I'd like to enjoy what little summer we have.  Even if that means closing the windows and cranking the AC?  Why, yes, yes it does!

Eric took a week off at the end of June, and it was so hot that all of his projects fell by the wayside.  It was too hot to work indoors, which was the back-up plan in case of rain.  At the end of the week, zero was accomplished, but sometimes, you need the down-time, too.  (To muse about things like air-conditioning, hmmm?)  Time to kick back and relax without stressing about the house and garden.  There'll be next week for that.  Mistress Ann will get the whip out again.

As it is, Eric is in Japan right now, hopefully he'll get home before super-Typhoon Neoguri derails his flight.  I got a cryptic email from him a while ago:  Hello from Planet Japan.  I went to a place called the Jet-Lag and I got stickers.  It is hot and humid here too. I wished he could see my face, because I was laughing so hard I had tears in my eyes.  (WTH?  Stickers?  I can't wait to hear all about this!)

Right now, we're being pommeled with high winds and tons of rain as a much-needed cold front pushes through our area.   The coming few days should give us a bit of relief.

I'll do my darnedest to get up another disjointed post about pets and knitting and baking in short order.


robin said...

First of all...ERIC IS IN JAPAN?!? Lee is soooo very jealous as that is on bucket list of places to go. Seriously, he was even taking crazy talk of leaving for a year just to live somewhere else (like Japan).

That aside, WooHoo Ann! Your back. Hehe. I thought maybe you had taken a blogger death as some of the other blogs I follow have done. I'm doing short posts at the moment because longs posts seem overwhelming to me at the moment.

The house projects are exciting!!! I laughed about the knotty pine. :D The translucent white should look really nice. I can't believe you upgraded your plastic door. heheheee. I can laugh because I still don't have plastic and playwood sounds sweet!

Shim Farm said...

Hi Robin!

I peppered your blog with so many comments yesterday, that I figured I might as well write a blog post. I think you know the feeling!

I had so many drafts started that felt no-quite-right, but when I re-read them last night, I was like, hey, this ain't half-bad! Don't know why I never published them LOL!

Yeah, Eric got a trip to Japan, just a quick turn-around. Seriously, there's never enough time to really go any where or do anything. The only thing that's accomplished is that he comes home and needs 3 days to recover. (That's why we're slow to get stuff done. Life gets in the way).

I'm going to try and take your recent approach to blogging - lots of smaller, shorter posts. I've been lazy with the camera, too. That doesn't help, either.

Seriously, the knotty pine is beautiful. In one of the photos, you can see a stained sample at the top. It turned out too gray or pink, I can't remember, but you get an idea of the over all effect. Lea our paint gal is working on it. It's all coming together upstairs. Hopefully, by the end of summer we will have made a major dent and have just a few remaining things to do. (Like the upstairs powder room. That will be a saga all it's own).

I love the plywood door! I told Eric I am in NO HURRY to upgrade it to frosted glass. I'm going to try and patch the inside of the room where I tore that blasted red Tuck-tape off, taking most of the drywall surface with it. We're not sure how we're going to marry both door frames yet, because eventually we'll have to re-build the entire master bedroom, because the insulation is practically nonexistent. Anyhow, it's a project for another decade...

Glad to see that Sidney is toddling around and that you're enjoying your garden and keeping busy with all sorts of neat projects. Tell Lee to stay put - I hate it when guys talk their "crazy talk" like you so aptly put it. Tell him to finish the house first. Say that Ann says so! Then you can rent it out for year LOL, not before!

OK, gotta run! I promise (promise!) that I'll get another blog post up very soon.

Shepherd's Loft said...

I'm glad to know I'm not the only one with blog withdrawal. I love following your house adventures. I hope you are getting some knitting time . I am not. Have a great summer. Stay cool as best you can.

Shim Farm said...

Hi Linda!

Happy you got a blog post put up, too. It's hard to juggle everything, isn't it?

Hope you can find some down-time this summer!

I have been knitting a lot lately, more on that later!

Stephen Andrew said...

You've been gone too long my friend! But..so have I. This winter drove me batshit too. The world wine reserves may not endure another winter of equal proportion.
Where are the puppy pics??? Glad all is well! You enjoy the rest of your summer! Oh...and I don't blame you on the AC. All bets are off when I get too hot.

Shim Farm said...

Duuude! Where have you been?!? Oh, I am so happy we put that winter behind us, if the next one is as bad, I think I'm going to have to pull the plug! But all is well, it's summer and the living is easy...today was hot and humid, but what the heck, I'm done complaining.

Dinarooski is quite the puppers! Man, have we had some growing pains with him, he's SO headstrong, but he's now mellowing (thank dog) and we hope the worst is behind us. Right now, he's decided he doesn't want to have his nails trimmed, ever again. He's got a lot of little quirks...my major issue is his habit of bolting. I think there is an Invisible Fence in our future. But he's my little velcro-buddy, and I can't do anything wrong in his eyes (except maybe for the nail-trimming thing!)

I've had issues with my ipad hating my ancient laptop, so my posts and photos are haphazard at best. Pics to follow - Odin is a very handsome little guy!

Hope you've got some downtime to enjoy August!

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