Sunday, September 27, 2015
It was a pretty productive but exhausting weekend here at number 29. The painting of the living and dining rooms got finished and new blinds installed (good riddance BLUE verticals), the long-delayed stainless steel backsplash in the laundry was erected and a new pendant light over the dining table was connected. Sounds like simple tasks...however, we have learned that nothing is as simple as it seems here at Deb and Steve's tropical oasis.
I had received a quote from a window covering company here in town and not only was the price high, the delivery time was 4-6 weeks which would have meant putting the old blue blinds back up on my newly painted architraves and so I decided to go the quicker less expensive route and buy ready made shades and install them myself. Sounds great in theory, right? After all, my windows are standard sizes and I live with the handiest man I know. Although the shades came in the right widths for my windows, they would not fit with the brackets on an inside mount. This was tantamount to the look I wanted. I had painstakingly painted all the window trims out in a dark grey (Taubmans Grey Moggy), hoping to achieve a framed portrait effect when looking out at the tropical foliage and distant bushland. They would need to be cut. So, each roller shade had to be carefully disassembled completely, hardware hack sawed to size, fabric measured and precisely trimmed, then reassembled, x2 for each window as I had chosen double day and night shades. We cleared the dining room floor to make a space large enough to conduct this operation and after 5 hours of measuring twice, cutting once and crawling around the porcelain tile floor on our hands and knees, we had beautiful custom fit window treatments for about a third of the cost of contracting them out.
Next up, bunging up the backsplash (splashback if you are Australian). This was not too difficult other than the fact that one of the cut out holes for the plumbing was a bit tight, so we had to grind out the steel a bit. Once that was done, we adhered it to the wall and it quickly cemented itself to the drywall. Affixing the taps would be a cinch we reckoned. Think again. One thing we are learning quickly as we renovate is "never assume". The faucet and taps we purchased and installed for the washing machine matched the ones we were about to install on the laundry tub. (You may recall my reference to them as the jewels of the room - like Paloma Picasso X's). However, these were a bit different...NOT what we assumed! So, had we checked the fit prior to sticking the Stainless Steel on the wall, we could have solved the installation easy as. But now, we had no room to manoeuvre through the steel wall and there was no way we wanted to rip it off now. The tool necessary to do the job was unavailable yesterday, so today as I write this blog, the laundry room tap installation is incomplete and awaiting the arrival of my handiest of men to bring home the tools for the job later today.
The third renovation task of the weekend went smoother than the first two but not entirely as we had hoped either. We knew going in that the dining room light fixture was not going to hang centered over the table, but we are a hopeful pair and so we forged ahead "just to see" how off it would look. I believe his words were - "the light is great darl, but the position is a bloody shocker, eh?" I agreed and made a mental note that some of my Canadianisms were rubbing off on him. Eh?
A new ceiling fan was on the agenda for the lounge room, but by the time we got to number 4 on our list, a quick read of the installation instructions calling for something necessary that neither of us had ever heard of, forced us to surrender for the weekend and as it was getting damn close to wine o'clock, we put that job on the list for the electrician that needs to come and move the junction box in the dining room and move a few power outlets.
As I sit here at my dining table looking at the dividing line between the kitchen that is still in it's original state and the dining room in it's fresh new look, I can see how far our humble abode has come in the last few weeks. I would love to "assume" the kitchen renovation will be completed by the time I get back from Canada in December but we all know that assumptions can often make an ass out of u and me.