Sunday, May 29, 2011

reno chronicles #20

So…here’s what’s been happening at the reno…

Wonderful contractor put in the awesome windows and the door right away to help avoid another incident like last week. He even put a temporary deadbolt in until I could pick up the hardware I wanted for the door.

That became a priority and I swung over the Armitage Hardware on Stanley Street at lunch time. Not sure they knew what to make of me there…it’s really a commercial shop…don’t think they get too many gals in there. Must have been the sparkly belt and pink shoes that threw them.

Electrical was put in this week as well. That’s where you really need to put some thought into the details…not just washer, dryer and heater needs but details like two-way light switches conveniently located so you never have to walk through a dark room and the location of both interior and exterior light fixtures and basic outlets for other purposes.

Don’t forget an outside outlet is very handy for vacuuming the car and/or whipper- snipping the grass. An outside outlet on the second floor deck is necessary for plugging in lovely little white lights, too.

On Friday, the roof was put on. After a little back and forth with the neighbor, wonderful contractor, and a building inspector/”independent party”, the roof on the addition is now nicely snugged up and sealed to the neighbors roof (remember it’s a semi-detached house).

This is best for both houses as now, no water will run down in between my new addition and the neighbours old one, preventing future water damage to both.

I also approved the great deck design wonderful contractor came up with, so we're all decided on what that's going to look like and ready to go on that front when the time comes.

Finally, my floor was delivered…and was a huge disappointment. It didn’t look half as nice as I expected it to based on the photos and the description on-line. Not happy with it at all. Luckily, I could return it locally -- no hassle, no fuss -- and am continuing on the search for flooring. Waiting on some price quotes from Floors Plus (Bayer’s Lake) for two different options I looked at yesterday.

That’s about it from the reno this week….see you next week!

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

Sunday, May 22, 2011

reno chronicles #19

Ok…now we’re really moving!

A slow start at the beginning of the week due to weather, but a very strong finish! I’ll let the pics tell the story of the incredible and exciting progress.

I ordered the flooring this week (not because it’s critical in the project, but because it was on sale this week). I also gave up the dream of using a vintage light fixture that’s got some family history to it because, of course, it’s not CSA approved, so the electrician won’t put it in.

That’s fair…and I learned that it would take more hassle than it’s worth to try to build a new fixture around the old part. So, I did a little shopping yesterday and found a new one that I really like (and was in my budget!)

That’s the update, but here’s the real story of the week…

Early yesterday evening, I find a homeless man trying to sleep in the half build addition…he’s lying down on the floor, eyes closed…

Me: “Excuse me, what are you doing?”

He: “Um…(opening his eyes and raising up to lean on one elbow)…I was just looking for recyclables.”

Me: (although clearly that’s NOT what he’s doing) “sorry, no recyclables here.”

He: (getting up on his feet now and brushing construction dust off him, looks at me indignantly) “WHAT? You don’t recycle?!?”

(As if that’s the crazy thing going on here!)

Me: (somehow hear myself saying) “Of course I recycle.”

He: “Well, will you put them aside for me?”

Me: (finally recovering only a tiny bit of my sensibilities) “Ah…no. I put them on the street for recycling day.”

He: (as he walks away) “Fine, I’ll come by then.”

Me: (left standing there wondering what just happened).

That invaded my private space, and left me feeling uneasy. I didn't like it. And wished there was a boy here with an hammer or a golf club, or something else that looked menacing to handle this...just in case.

It was also one of those really strange moments where the video and the soundtrack did not match.

And it made for a funny story to tell later that night over wine with friends.

The lesson learned? When you want to totally change the subject at hand, just belt out “What? You don’t recycle?!?” or something else completely unrelated to what’s happening and see how people react.

Can’t wait for next week.

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

Sunday, May 15, 2011

reno chronicles #18

Rain, rain, go away!

Seriously. Go away.

Wonderful contractor is frustrated because this job is going so slowly. I don’t have much to compare it to, but would agree that it’s not happening fast. I don’t mind so much, but I can understand his perspective for sure.

Recording breaking rain must be very, very hard on business. Not to mention that it can't be any fun being outside and soggy all the time. The progress this week included the roughed-in plumbing, another successful inspection, the crushed rock for drainage, and with a break in the weather on Friday, spray foam insulation under the floor.

The electrician was here on one of the rainy days checking things out for his upcoming part in the renovation, too.

And I found awesome vintage hardware for the inside door…just needs a new paint job!

Now, we wait for another non-rain day to finally pour the floor. Doesn’t look like it’s going to be Monday.

Or Tuesday either, according to the current weather forecast.

Sigh…looks like I’m not going to be having that deck party on the May long weekend after all.

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

Sunday, May 8, 2011

reno chronicles #17

Mother Nature was not a friend of the renovation this week.

And come to think of it, not last week either, but I was trying to cut her some slack. It is Mother’s Day, after all.

Regardless, wonderful contractor hustled it as best he could under the big blue tarp and progress was made…concrete forms and more concrete poured for the foundation.

Waiting for the concrete to dry and for a break in the weather to backfill, the plumber was here checking things out to plan his part in the job, and another inspection was passed.

Finally, bright and early on Friday morning, the big blue tarp was pulled down and the excavator boys were back to take care of the backfilling.

Seems a bit anticlimactic, but I now have a solid foundation. And I even got my parking spot back for the weekend, so that is exciting.

In the meantime, I’ve done some more research and am fairly certain that I’ve finally decided on flooring for the room.

And yesterday, I found a great old door at Renovators Resource that will go between the kitchen and the new addition. Just wait until it’s a perfect fit, has some vintage hardware and a couple of coats of paint! This week…a hole in the original foundation to run plumbing, more concrete for the floor and lots of other good stuff…

Now, Mother Nature…you know you are the mother of all mothers. And I love you and appreciate you each and every day. If it's not too much to ask, I would greatly appreciate a little more lovin' from you this week…please?

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/

Sunday, May 1, 2011

reno chronicles #16

An exciting week here at the little reno site. The hole was dug, the footings were poured and the first inspection was passed.

All of that in a week that had only one nice day and lots of pouring rain. Luckily, wonderful contractor had the foresight to rig up a giant tarp over the work site.

Fun facts from this week…there were a bunch of old, still intact medicine bottles discovered in excavation, sometimes it takes a whole day for an inspector to show up, a blue trap can filter the light through your windows so you feel like you are inside a pool (or in a blue-light club!), and any kind of activity like this brings out neighbours, random people and the nosey alike to ask questions, check out what’s happening, and to chat.

This week…foundation, back-filling and some framing. Should be exciting!!

See you next week.

For more about rouge, visit or check out past blogs at www.justalittlerouge/