Friday, November 23, 2012

One more room reclaimed

This room has taken a bit longer to reclaim back to a livable state. Rainy weather makes plaster and paint difficult to dry.
This is just after I sanded and sealed the floors. They are stained and distressed but after all they are one hundred years old. We like the look of the floors showing their age and character. The walls are still very rough in this photo. I added a quad outlet and ran power to the closet for light and future network and internet appliances.

Here a week later I have plastered the room where all the damage was, primed and painted.

White is so clean. We have decided to paint everything as we go in bright white then as time allows we'll add some color.

This is the future office, sewing room. The kids will move from the dinning room to here and unpack for a while--temporarily "the kids room."

We have been also working on the upstairs (kids floor) as time allows. I sanded the floor and exposed the great and smelly urine stain of 2012. Obvious longterm urinating in the center of the room soaked into the wood flooring. We dried it out, put down baking soda and the smell quelled.

Then we thought we had a leak in the roof highlighted by the rains. The entire urine stain floor was damp and began to smell horribly allover again. I was freaking out. A new roof is definitely not in the budget. After much investigating I claimed that the roof was not leaking and something much more mysterious was happening. With thoughts of poltergeists dancing in my head we discovered that dried urine is hydrophilic. It rehydrates itself during periods of high humidity.

Tabitha did some research and decided to douse the entire floor with straight vinegar. We had already intuitively taken the first step with the baking soda. It turns out the properties of urine are both acidic and alkaline and need to be dealt with separately and accordingly. Ah the strong smell of vinegar, a pleasing welcome alternative. Now we are drying the area again. Today promises sunny warm drying weather.

The next front to attack is the bathroom. The plumbing needs to be re-done. The drain, hot and cold supply are old and problematic. We have a new sink and cabinet from Ikea. It takes special plumbing connections to accommodate the drawers. I opted for this model knowing that I was going to have to change the plumbing connections anyway.

 Tabitha is wet-scrubbing the nasty-painted-on wallpaper from the walls. It was a buckling mess and impossible  to attack without complete removal.  The kids are so involved with this renovation/resurrection it is their house too and they also love it. Work of this nature makes you love it--Stockholm syndrome?

A much needed Thanksgiving break.
We hiked to the Mt. Tamalpais watershed with friends and family from our church. It is a yearly tradition to go mushroom hunting and hike. I estimate it was a three to four mile hike. Last year I estimated it was seven. That was immediately after my surgery recovery. Perhaps next year I will claim it merely a mile?


Ron said...

Your house sounds like an ambitious project, but I'm sure you will get it all redone. The bright white looks great.

We've got a bit of Stockholm syndrome around here, too. :)

Pablo said...

I'm truly impressed with the progress you're making on the house and how you've gotten the kids so involved. But the question you leave me with is this: how do you like running in those toe shoes?

karl said...

Ron, Thank you it will be a long trek ahead.

Pablo, Yes kids need to be exposed to this kind of stuff. Later in life they will not be daunted by difficulty as easily. I do like my VFFs they are especially great for hiking. I haven't used them for running in a while since i have been too busy. I recall them altering my stride a bit when I first began to use them. I got them because Tabitha loves hers and they were on deep sale for the ugly orange ones. I'd definitely buy them again even at full price.

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