I was upstairs working on work work today (catching up a bit from the week), but she spent her time in the basement doing a ton of stuff: clearing away debris, reorganizing, and also building these bad boys. Which involved some angled cuts and a bit of table saw work.
Continued work tonight in the dining room. With the ceiling and walls patched with mud, sanded, and wiped clean (all by hand)… the actual priming of the walls was going a lot easier.
We covered over the space above the fireplace earlier this year, leaving the smallest hint of a mantle ledge. As it turns out, there’s just enough space to balance a small dram of scotch.
It may be hard to prove, but the room actually looks smoother and cleaner, after we worked on it. Things are definitely in a better state for primer, after us taking the time to wipe down the ceiling and walls.
What’s striking is what the wood looks like along the side (where she hasn’t gotten to apply the oil yet). Most of this is going to soak in over time, but it’s still a very surprising contrast.
Put in time today in the dining room, also trying to get paper and Masonite down to protect our new floor.
Part of what I did was bring up the table saw, and to do some custom cuts of Masonite. I’m overlapping boards in a few places, but ultimately I’d like to just have a single, smooth surface.
It’s a challenge with these images, as we only end up coming downstairs well into the evening (we need to wait around 90+ minutes after Nick’s done to walk on the floor). We don’t really get to see the floor much in daylight, as it’s dark when we actually can walk around.
Nick and Milton came by today, to have another pass at the floor. After their normal, full day… they stopped by around 4PM to put down the first layer of varnish.
Similar to the stain, once the varnish is down… we need to stay off of the floor for a set amount of time (about an hour to an hour and a half, until it dries).
We’re being really careful to watch gingerly along the floor. And I can’t help but feel like every step I take is going to somehow irreparably damage all the work that’s been done. It’s like the floor is some kind of delicate, beautiful lava, and I need to just stay off it at all costs.
Honestly? I was not expecting such a stark change, with the slight gaps between boards seemingly removed, and a continuity that stretched from room to room.
I got the last bit of primer on the living room done. And Liz moved her stain tests to the actual floor. In addition to the standard stains, she tried out a few custom blend variations of her own.
We’ve taken down so many walls, pulled up so many floors… there’s precious little left in this house that we haven’t touched or removed, in some way. And yet, somehow. Magically. This house still surprises us, even now.
Liz has taken on the challenging and stressful task of removing all the tile in our dining room fireplace. They’re all pretty loose, and need to get re-installed.
This really is an amazing thing, and a tremendous milestone for me and Liz. We’ve been working for a long, long time on the house and so much of that work has been subtractive in nature: demo and removal.
To be at a point where we are adding new things, shaping the house anew, is incredibly exciting. Every time I come down and stand in these rooms, it just takes my breath away.
A lot of planning today, with a majority of the time spent figuring out what needed to be done, measurements for the fireplace tile frame, and framing up all the floor vents.