Thursday, March 13, 2008

The Kitchen Construction Is Done!!!

After 2 1/2 months, we are almost done! I am so happy to wake up this morning and not have any workers in my house. For the past 3 weeks, we have had people here and I feel like I have to be dressed early and just sit around and do nothing all day but wait for them to get finished and leave.

It all started with the floor on December 26th. The dust from jackhammering up the old floor was unbelievable. I still have it inside my cabinets. The floor came in more colorful than the sample, so that threw everything else I had picked out off. After 10 trips to the granite warehouse, I finally made a decision. The sink was back ordered and it took several weeks to get it put in. In the meantime, I had my "bad painters" remove the popcorn from the ceiling, texture the walls and ceiling, paint the base coat and refinish the cabinets. They were very nice and I was pretty much okay with everything except they were very messy.

They came back after the sink and granite were in and "faux" painted. It was just terrible. My Vietnamese remodeler said that it look like my grandchildren had painted it. On top of that, they rinsed the cream paint from their paint brushes in my new black sink repeatedly. I had to get a toothpick to clean it out of the cracks. They must have also had some serious stomach issues because they spent about 1/2 of their days in my bathroom. I would be sitting in my bedroom chair and they would go camp out in the bathroom. I got to where I was so embarrassed for them that when they went in, I would go upstairs or hide out in my bathroom. It happened at least 10 times a day. (Since I am so bathroom phobic, I did not use that bathroom until after my cleaning ladies had come.)

They finished on Monday and it was so bad that I started calling other painters immediately and started repainting the base coat myself. I couldn't stand to look at it. I had lined up a 2nd painter to do just the base coat, and he did not show up. I waited all day Friday and he came around 4:30 and said he would be back on Saturday at 9:00. Pops waited all day for him and he never showed. Finally he came around 10:00 on Monday and at that point, I had finished,

My new painter started on Tuesday and finally finished yesterday, after 7 days. I am very pleased with the faux finish and about 70% pleased with the accent painting. I showed him a picture of what I wanted and color swatches and he didn't do it the same. It needs some tweaking and I will like it. I was not happy with it when he was packed up to leave and luckily Jennifer came by and we both told him changes that needed to be made, like "this side needs something yellow", "more leaves", "this needs to be darker", etc. It improved, but I still see things that would make it look better.

He was not as messy as the first painters, but I had to get mineral spirits, steel wool and re-stain a few areas and chip paint out of my sink. He left the air vents white so I had to go get paint and paint and replace them. All I have to do now is find some switch plates that match. I still need shutters, black refrigerator and my table, which will take about 3 more months, but I can be patient and wait. My physical work is done and I am happy of that. I am tired, but I am so thankful that I had the opportunity to do this.

Best of all, here are my little girls that help with the whole process. We had many picnics in the bathtub and spent lots of time upstairs locked up in the game room.

They both are so good and SO sweet. I love them to pieces.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Happy Birthday Jordan!

Today, Jordan is 24. My children are growing up! Twenty four years ago, I didn't think she was EVER going to be born. I went to the Dr. when I was 14 days late and he said, you are never going to have this baby. That was on a Thursday and he scheduled me to be induced on Monday. I was not a happy camper. I tried everything I knew possible to go into labor and it was just not happening. One thing in particular I remember doing was going to the zoo and walking around for hours. I thought for sure that would work, but no, it didn't.

We even had Jennifer's birthday party early because I was so afraid I would be in the hospital and didn't want to mess her birthday up.

On a side note, it is funny how people talk about your size when you are pregnant. They will say, oh, you are so much smaller than you were last time, or I don't think you look that big. The day before Jordan was born, I looked sideways in the mirror for the first time and just about died. My rear end was HUGE. That is the first time I realized what people were talking about when they say you carry the baby in your rear. She was definitely there.

At 2:00 a.m. on March 9th, I finally went into labor. (This was my third time to go into labor at 2:00 a.m.) I knew I was in for a long day. I finally called the Dr. around noon and they told me to go to the office. They checked me and said I was in labor and sent me on to the hospital.

I can still to this day remember how hard I worked to push her out. I was exhausting. The hardest work I have ever done, but she finally arrived around 3:45 p.m. weighing in at 10 lbs. 9 1/2 ozs. It felt so good to "get rid of that load". I felt great after I had her. I quickly made it to my room, rolled my hair and retouched up my makeup. Back in the day, the hospital had "visiting" hours from 6 - 8 and I could not wait to show her off. She was adorable and looked like she was 3 months old.

Jordan has always wanted to "save the world". Since college, she has worked for non profit organizations, helping children. She currently works for a large non profit company in Ft. Worth as the Administrator of Group Services.

She is so sweet, fun, loud and the most appreciative person that I know. We love you Jordy and hope you have a wonderful day!

Thursday, March 6, 2008

Happy Birthday Jennifer!

This time, 28 years ago, I was in labor with my first baby, Jennifer. I was 2 day past my due date and woke up at 2:00 a.m. with pains. I worked in Medical Records at the hospital (not the hospital I was delivering at). I went to work at 5:00 a.m., so I decided to go ahead and go to work. I didn't just want to sit at home all day and wait. I figured if I stayed busy, the day would go faster.

Every morning, I would call Pops up at 7:00 to wake him up. When I called him, I told him I was in labor. His response was, "Should I stay home from work?" I told him since I was at work, I was sure he could go to work also.

I left at noon, my usual time and went home to try to take a nap and watch my afternoon TV shows. By 5:00 the pains were getting pretty strong. When a contraction would start, I would walk around in a circle in the living room. Finally at 6:00, I called the Dr. and his response was, "Well, if you think your in labor then go to the hospital."

One the way, we stopped at Jackson's (7-11 type store) to cash a check do we would have money for the pay phone to call everyone. Pops was scared and I was really scared about how bad the pain would be because on the tour of the delivery room, people were screaming. I vowed at that time to bite a whole in my lip before I would scream like that.

When they came in and said it was time to go to the delivery room, I said, "You're kidding, I thought it was going to be much worse than that." She was face up instead of face down, so they used forceps to pull her out. That made me a little nervous.

Our first bundle of joy was born at 11:45 p.m. weighing 8 lbs 14 ozs and she was absolutely adorable. They handed her to Pops and I was scared for him because that was the first baby he had ever held.

I was on such a high, I didn't sleep all night long. I was so excited. The hospital was so crowded that I stayed in a labor room for the next day because there were not any regular beds and they had babies in disposable cardboard box cribs. Pops thought he was an expert by that time because he would walk back through the labor area and now understood what all the notes on the labor boards meant.

We are every bit as proud of her today as the minute she was born. She is a great wife, teacher and mother.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Faux Hell

This kitchen remodeling is about to do me in. We started on December 26th and I thought we would be through last week, but the worst of it just started last week.

I have learned many new things through this whole project. Number one, is that anytime you are dealing with natural stone, what you get is usually going to be different from the sample. The floor was my firt shock when it came in way more colorful than the sample. It has grown on me, but I had to adjust the granite after the floor was put in.

After several trips to the granite store, I was stumped. I took my friend Sandra who is a professional decorator. We picked out a beautiful piece, that unfortunately turned out to be the most expensive grade in the whole place. Several more trips and I picked the final one.

The granite was ready, but we had to wait for the sink that was backordered. It took about 7 weeks. The marble backsplash came in and it was way lighter than the sample. Last Sunday, I sat on the back porch and hand stained each tile before they were put in.

Everything was starting to come together until Monday. My painters (2 guys that I have used before that are supposedly faux professionals) came to paint my cabinets and walls. They had a sample board made to show me how it would look. The final walls did not look ANYTHING like the sample. Not even the color.

After 11 hours, this is what I ended up with.

I checked on them all afternoon, and I thought they were adding something else, but this was the end result. Horrible. And to top it off, they rinsed their brushes out in my new black sink and I had to get a toothpick and scrape the paint out of the drains.

I started calling new painters on Tuesday. Knowing that it was going to have to be repainted cream again before anyone could faux, I started painting myself since I could not stand to be in the same room and look at the walls. I spent about 7 hours painting the breakfast area and still had more to go.

Juan, who works for my remodeler, came over Wednesday and said he would paint the rest of the cream and start Friday morning. I was so relieved. I waited at home all day Friday, and Juan showed up at 4:30 and said he would be back at 9:00 on Saturday to paint.

I was relieved again. Since I didn't have to finish, I went to Canton. Much to my surprise, when I walked in the door Saturday afternoon after a fun day, Pops informed me that Juan did not show up. I was so mad, but I sucked it up and painted the rest on Sunday. It only took 6 more hours. I had to get it done, because I had new faux painters coming on Monday.

Guess who showed up at my house this morning at 9:30? You guessed it, Juan. He said he had to go out of town and didn't have my phone number.

I am hoping that the third time is a charm. My new painters will be here in the morning. I am ready to get this finished!

I am such a sucker. I had paid the first painters all but $100 before they came on Monday. They were here from 9:00 a. m. to 7:30 p.m. Even though I hated the walls, I gave them $100 extra because they had worked so long and were so nice. What is wrong with me?