The lack of posting this week hasn't been due to a lack of work — it's been a week of tedium, frustration, dedication, and eventual reward. (I'm trying to write this with Tai's attitude, seeing as how remodeling is not in my Top, oh, 5,000 favorite activities.)
Tai and his father attacked a lot of the floor last Saturday, but that day's work didn't even begin to accomplish what we needed. If we were working on this project full-time, we would have finished it days ago, but since we're evening and weekend warriors the tasks have been spread out and necessarily sharing time with trips to Lowe's, work, sleep, eating, and episodes of "The Office" and "30 Rock." By the end of Saturday, even though Tai and his father put in a good 10-hour day, we still had a joist-and-fiberglass "floor."
On Monday, we finished leveling and cross-bracing the joists to make sure that we had a sturdy foundation for all that slate tile we're planning. While most of the joists were too low, in the middle of the floor bordering a steel beam two joists were riding about half-an-inch too high. Tai used a bit of the muscle that his sister/trainer helped him develop to plane away the top of the joists on Tuesday and Wednesday nights. He also finished cross-bracing everything Wednesday, setting the stage for one awesome party Thursday night.
Thursday night we screwed all night. Screwed and screwed and unscrewed and rescrewed the crooked screws. We got four of the five sub-floor sheets down and SCREWED IN TIGHT. I cannot communicate how gratifying it was to step on a floor that didn't give, dip, squeak, mush or compress under my foot.
I also cannot communicate how poorly I handle a power drill. Have you ever been lucky enough to have the "help" of a younger relative with a project — that special niece/nephew/child/grandchild who just really wants to help but has no idea what to do and ends up getting in the way and actually creating more work for you? I am that person, only with a more colorful vocabulary.
Tai's rock-star father and his rock-star nail gun came by for more help on Friday. The two of them finished the fifth panel of sub-floor, which was in a tricky corner of the kitchen where we hope to add a washer/dryer unit and additional pantry space. They also framed out the walls necessary for those accoutrement.
The rest of the weekend will require additional fiddling with the framing, dropping a ceiling panel above our future washer/dryer's home corner, and installing hardi-backer (a cement fiberboard subfloor layer) on top of the current subfloor layer. The hardi-backer will form a water-resistant, level layer for the kitchen tile.
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