The End of the Beginning: Part 3

Two days ago I posted the terms and first attachment to the contract between me and the contractor who has been responsible for the bulk of the work on the renovation of The Glade. Yesterday I covered the second attachment.  Today I’ll wrap up the contract with Attachment 1C.  Hope this will answer questions about what might and might not be covered in a contract.

We had a contractor's truck (or two) parked in the driveway for many months.

We had a contractor’s truck (or two) parked in the driveway for many months.

Today’s post will cover Attachment 1C:

ATTACHMENTlC

59-Install  base molding in kitchen, pantry, entry, entry closet, and 1st floor hallway to match existing home as close as possible.

Actually the new baseboards are nicer than the old ones.

Actually the new baseboards are nicer than the old ones.

60-Install doors on pantry and entry closet to match existing home as close as possible.

Shaker-style double doors on the pantry and mudroom closet match the kitchen cabinets.

Shaker-style double doors on the pantry and mudroom closet match the kitchen cabinets.

61-Install trim on windows and doors in kitchen and entry to match existing home as close as close as possible.

The windows are trimmed (and this is also a good shot of the baseboard).

The windows are trimmed (and this is also a good shot of the baseboard).

62-Trim new openings in dining room and master bedroom to match existing home as close as possible.

The opening in the dining room is supposed to be trimmed, likewise in the master bedroom.

The opening in the dining room is supposed to be trimmed, likewise in the master bedroom.

63-lnstall  shelving in pantry and entry closet.

Mudroom closet

Mudroom closet

64-Reconfigure  basement door area and finish.

The basement door (on the left) was turned 90 degrees and replaced.

The basement door (on the left) was turned 90 degrees and replaced.

65-Install owners kitchen cabinets and appliances.

We purchased the cabinets and appliances and the contractor installed them.

We purchased the cabinets and appliances and the contractor installed them.

66-Relocate gas line from tank to house.

The propane gasline was rerouted from behind the Cottage to the house.

The propane gasline was rerouted from behind the Cottage to the house.

67-Replace septic line from house to PVC at septic tank.

The sewer pipes to the septic tank were upgraded from terra cotta to PVC.

The sewer pipes to the septic tank were upgraded from terra cotta to PVC.

68-Remove all construction debris and dispose of.

YardClutter

69-Regrade side of house and driveway to accommodate addition.

The ground surrounding the house was all graded.

The ground surrounding the house was graded which has alleviated our “water in the basement” problem.

70-Supply all necessary permits required.

The cost projection was considerably less than the actual cost.

The cost projection was considerably less than the actual cost.

71-0wner to do all demolition.

Charlie did all the demolition.

Charlie did all the demolition.

72-0wner to supply and install all insulation.

Charlie did all the insulation.

Charlie did all the insulation.

73-0wner to do all inside and outside painting.

I've been doing a lot of painting.

I’ve been doing a lot of painting.

74-0wner to install new sidewalk.

We'll replace this one day.

We’ll replace this one day.

75-0wner to repair all damage to yard.

We started by seeding part of the back lawn.

We started by seeding part of the back lawn.

There are still lots of projects for Charlie and me and perhaps other tradesmen to do to finish the renovation in earnest.  My plan is to continue blogging about our successes and failures hoping that it remains interesting to someone and provides us with a diary of how The Glade was changed to accommodate our changing lives.

Where do you see yourself five years from now?

The End of the Beginning: Part 2

Yesterday I posted the terms and first attachment to the contract between me and the contractor who has been responsible for the bulk of the work up to this time. This post and tomorrow’s will conclude the contract by listing the second and third attachments.  Hope this might help someone who is about to set off on a difficult but worthwhile journey in renovation. I want to add that we lived at the house during the entire renovation.

Back in October, 2013, the conservatory (left) is covered in plywood but the kitchen wing (right has only trusses, no roof.

Back in October, 2013, the conservatory (left) is covered in plywood but the kitchen wing (right) has only trusses, no roof.

There were 3 attachments to the contract which outlined the prospective work.   Before I signed the contract I crossed off items that we had decided not to pursue at this juncture. These have been struck-through below. Attachment 1A was in yesterday’s post. Today’s post will cover Attachment 1B:

ATTACHMENTlB

30-Install kitchen faucet and hook up owner’s kitchen sink and dishwasher. (faucet allowance $200.00)

We supplied the dishwasher and wash-up sink including the faucet.

We supplied the dishwasher and wash-up sink including the faucet.

31-Install butlers faucet and hook up owner’s sink. (faucet allowance $150.00)

We also supplied the prep sink and faucet so we'll be getting a credit for that.

We also supplied the prep sink and faucet so we’ll be getting a credit for that.

32-Install ice maker line to owner’s refrigerator.

We bought the refrigerator and the contractor hooked it up to the waterline.

We bought the refrigerator and the contractor hooked it up to the waterline.

33-Rough in exhaust fans to both bathrooms in additions.

The square opening is a bathroom ceiling exhaust fan.

The square opening is a bathroom ceiling exhaust fan.

34-Rough in electrical outlets to code in all rooms in additions.

New switches and outlets have been roughed-in.

New switches and outlets have been roughed-in.

35-Rough in one light over each vanity in bathrooms.

We have roughed in electric for the new bathrooms.

We have roughed in electric for the new bathrooms.

36-Rough in one recessed light over each shower in bathrooms.

The conservatory shower has one recessed light; the master bath shower, 2.

The conservatory shower has one recessed light; the master bath shower, 2.

37-Rough in one ceiling light in walk in closet

The master closet has a roughed-in ceiling light.

The master closet has a roughed-in ceiling light.

36-Rough in three recessed  lights in 2nd floor hallway.

The master suite hall has two ceiling fixtures roughed-in (not recessed).

The master suite hall has two ceiling fixtures roughed-in (not recessed).

37-Rough in six recessed lights in conservatory.

38-Rough in one coach light outside conservatory exterior door.

The exterior light over the conservatory doors.

The exterior light over the conservatory doors.

39-Rough in one closet light for large closet  in conservatory.

The conservatory closet is wired for a lighting fixture inside.

The conservatory closet is wired for a lighting fixture inside.

40-Install one fluorescent light in pantry.

The pantry light is just over the door inside the pantry.

The pantry light is just over the door inside the pantry.

41-Install  owner’s coach two lights at exterior side door.

Porch lights on the side porch.

Porch lights on the side porch.

42-Install one recessed light in entry.

Actually we used a pendant light in the entrance.

Actually we used a pendant light in the entrance.

43-Install  one pendant light in 1st floor hallway.

We used a matching pendant in the hall.

We used a matching pendant in the hall.

44-Install six recessed lights in kitchen.

45-Install owner’s pendant lights in kitchen.

We have a variety of hanging pendants in the kitchen.

We have a variety of hanging pendants in the kitchen.

46-Install  electric to all necessary  appliances in kitchen.

All appliances have dedicated electric service.

All appliances have dedicated electric service.

47-Install two outside spot lights.

Outside motion-sensor spotlights are on the side and back of the house.

Outside motion-sensor spotlights are on the side and back of the house.

48-Install owners coach two lights outside front door.

The front door lights fully illuminate the front porch.

The front door lights fully illuminate the front porch.

49-Rough in or install switches to all necessary fixtures.

The near switch controls the mudroom and hall lights from the kitchen.

The near switch controls the mudroom and hall lights from the kitchen.

50-Relocate all necessary switches or receptacles to accommodate new door and or doorway locations or openings in existing house.

A lot of electric including switches were moved to accommodate moving entrances.

A lot of electric including switches were moved to accommodate moving entrances.

51-Relocate all electric necessary to remove existing kitchen.

Opening the wall is the old kitchen exposed a spider's-web of wiring.

Opening the wall is the old kitchen exposed a spider’s-web of wiring.

52-Relocate electric line to cottage.

The electric to the Cottage was rerouted along with the gas line.

The electric to the Cottage was rerouted along with the gas line.

53-Upgrade existing electric service to 200 amp. service.

This new electric line is double the thickness of the old one.

This new electric line is double the thickness of the old one.

54-Install smoke detectors in existing bedrooms and conservatory.

Blue dots denote new smoke detectors on the second floor.

Blue dots denote new smoke detectors on the second floor.

55-Install bluestone pavers on front and side porch. (allowance $22.00  per sq. ft./ materials and labor)

Bluestone porch decks.

Bluestone porch decks.

56-Drywall, spackle, and sand kitchen, pantry, entry, entry closet, and  1st floor hallway.

A team of professionals drywalled and mudded our kitchen and made it look easy.

A team of professionals drywalled and mudded our kitchen and made it look easy.

57-Install  2-1/4″ oak hardwood flooring in kitchen, pantry, entry, entry closet, and 1st floor hallway.

The new floor in the kitchen touches the old floor in the dining room.

The new floor in the kitchen touches the old floor in the dining room.

58-Sand, stain, and finish floors to match existing home as close as possible.

The first coat of polyurethane.

The floors didn’t need stain, just polyurethane.

Tomorrow, the last installment on the extensive contract that started the renovation of The Glade.

What’s on your list?

The End of the Beginning: Part 1

Now that the contractor’s part of our renovation project is almost done — meaning we’re ready for a final inspection — I thought you might like to see the actual contract.  We’ve been *VERY* happy with our contractor so if you live near Baltimore and want his name and contact info just leave me a comment and I’ll get it to you via email.

The terms of the contract:

CONTRACT AGREEMENT

This contract made this August 27th 2013, by and between                        , License #        with its principal office located at                      , hereinafter referred to as Contractor, Party of the first part and                       Jo                 , whose address is                               , hereafter referred to as Party of the second part.

Now, therefore, it is mutually agreed as follows:

  1. Contractor agrees to perform work on the property of the party of the second part located at the address stated above. Said work to be performed as follows on the attached pages.
  2. It is hereby agreed that said work will begin on August 29th 2013, and be completed by or approximately y February 28th 2014.
  3. For and in consideration of the sum of $???,500.00; of which $??,000.00 will be paid upon signing of this contract and the remainder to be paid as follows:
  • $??,000.00 due upon completion of footings
  • $??,000.00 due upon completion of foundations
  • $??,000.00 due upon midway point of framing
  • $??,000.00 due upon completion  of framing
  • $??,000.00 due upon completion of siding
  • $??,000.00 due upon completion of rough plumbing
  • $??,000.00 due upon completion of drywall
  • $?,500.00 balance due upon completion of project
  1.  No alteration or amendments to this contract shall be valid unless agreed to in writing by both parties
  2. All materials are property of  the Contractor until final payment is received.
  3. All payments 30 days past due will be subject to a 1.5% per month interest charge.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, the parties hereunto affix their hands and seal the day and year above written.

Due to hold ups NOT caused by the contractor or his subs the work outlined in the contract is finally finished a year later.

There were 3 attachments to the contract which outlined the prospective work.  Before I signed the contract I crossed off items that we had decided not to pursue at this juncture. These have been struck-through below.

Attachment 1A:

ATTACHMENTlA

 Work to be performed: Install two additions on home and make other alterations as per drawings.

Floorplan for the additions and renovations for The Glade.

Floorplan for the additions and renovations for The Glade.

 1-Excavate soil, install footings, install block, and prep crawl spaces with plastic and gravel.

Footings being poured and leveled.

Footings being poured and leveled.

2-Excavate soil, install footings, install block, and pour cement slabs for porches.

The side porch prepped to pour the concrete.

The side porch prepped to pour the concrete.

3-Install waterproofing where needed, drain tile where needed, and backfill soil.

We have a sump well in the corner of the kitchen crawlspace under the bump out which has been equipped with an electric pump.

We have a sump well in the corner of the kitchen crawlspace under the bump out which has been equipped with an electric pump.

4-Frame all floors, walls, ceilings, roofs, overhangs, and dormer.

The exterior framing of the new additions is 2 by 6 stock. This was an exciting time.

The exterior framing of the new additions is 2 by 6 stock. This was an exciting time.

5-Remove roofing shingles on existing  house.

The roofers cut our the rotten wood and replaced it with plywood.

The roofers cut our the rotten wood and replaced it with plywood.

6-Install tarpaper, drip edge, and architectural roofing shingles (to match antique slate sample received from owner as close as possible) on all roofs except conservatory.

New tar paper was laid before reshingling the roof.

New tar paper was laid before reshingling the roof.

7-Install membrane roof on conservatory.

The roof on the conservatory is flat to accommodate a future deck.

The roof on the conservatory is flat to accommodate a future deck.

8-0ption on metal roofs for all porches will be an additional charge of $3,500.00.

9-Install 5″ white aluminum gutters and 2×3″ downspouts on existing house and new additions.

New gutters and downspouts on the entire house

New gutters and downspouts on the entire house

10-Install Andersen 400 series windows with white vinyl cladding on outside and prefinished white wood on inside.

Lots of new windows were installed in the kitchen and conservatory.

Lots of new windows were installed in the kitchen and conservatory.

11-Install Andersen 400 series patio doors with white vinyl cladding on outside and prefinished white wood on inside.

French doors on the conservatory and master bedroom.

French doors on the conservatory and master bedroom.

12-Install exterior door on side of house. (allowance $300.00)

The side porch door.

The side porch door.

13-Install owners circular windows.

We provided the round windows for both of the new bathrooms.

We provided the round windows for both of the new bathrooms.

14-Relocate front window and repair siding.

The window on the right was removed from the center of the façade and will be installed where the front door formerly was located.

The window on the right was removed from the center of the façade and will be installed where the front door formerly was located.

15-Relocate front door and repair siding.

The door exchanged places with the window on the right.

The door exchanged places with the window on the right.

 16-Install 6×6 pressure treated columns on front and side porches wrapped with Azek vinyl.

The porch columns are covered with Azek.

The porch columns are covered with Azek.

17-Install Azek vinyl sofits and fascia boards on both additions.

The new building has Azek trim.

The new building has Azek trim.

18-Install Azek vinyl trim boards on all corners and around all windows and doors of both additions.

The kitchen bump-out is trimmed with Azek trim and panels.

The kitchen bump-out is trimmed with Azek trim and panels.

19-Install Tyvek house wrap on exterior walls of both additions.

The Tyvex covers the sheathing before the windows are installed.

The Tyvex covers the sheathing before the windows are installed.

20-Install cement siding shingles on both additions to match existing house as close as possible.

New shingles matched the old ones.

New shingles matched the old ones.

21-Caulk around all windows and doors on both additions.

The windows and doors were well-caulked.

The windows and doors were well-caulked.

22-Install  pressure treated steps at exterior Conservatory door.

We decided against Fiberon and vinyl on the steps.

We decided against Fiberon and vinyl on the steps.

23-Cover steps with Fiberon composite decking and add white vinyl railing system.

24-Color of  Fiberon to be selected by homeowner.

25-Install forced air heating ducts and returns in both additions to satisfy heating needs.

New ductwork was added both vertically and horizontally.

New ductwork was added both vertically and horizontally.

26-All heating will be tied into existing system.

The ductwork was framed-in.

The ductwork was framed-in.

27-0ption to upgrade to air conditioning will be $5,000.00.

28-Rough in PVC drain and vent lines to bathrooms and kitchen.

Shower wall in the conservatory is roughed-in.

Shower wall in the conservatory is roughed-in.

29-Rough in CPVC water lines to bathrooms and kitchen.

The kitchen sinks are totally hooked up.

The kitchen sinks are totally hooked up.

Come back tomorrow for Attachments 1B and 1C which complete the Contractor’s agreement to build 2 additions onto our 1946 farmhouse called The Glade.

Are you planning or in the midst of a major renovation?

 

A Drywall Trick

It may not be tricky to you but I would never have thought of this special cut to allow a pipe to protrude through drywall without actually piecing the area.

The drywall for the bottom of the wall needed to slip over the knee wall and let the water supply pipe for the toilet protrude through a small hole (on the left of the photo).

The drywall for the bottom of the wall needed to slip over the knee wall and let the water supply pipe for the toilet protrude through a small hole (on the left of the photo).

It appears that the sheet rock was somehow maneuvered so it could slide over the pipe with just one straight cut.

The one cut in the drywall will be patched behind the toilet.

The one cut in the drywall behind the toilet will be patched.

But the real truth is that the drywall was scored on the back to create a triangular door so the entire piece could slide down over both the knee wall and the pipe.

Can you see both the genius and the simplicity?

Can you see both the genius and the simplicity?

Special thanks for our friend “wid skeelz” who taught us another small item to keep in our bag of tricks.

Just the knee walls remain to be drywalled.

Just the knee walls remain to be drywalled.

Thanks to our diligence the drywall that was delivered in the middle of February is almost finished in the middle of August. Stop laughing.

Have you got a little trick that makes life easier?

101 in 1001 — The Third Go-round

This is my new list of 101 tasks that I would like to complete in 1001 days beginning August 12, 2014 (first list ended 11/13/2011, second list 8/11/2014) until May 9, 2017. Some of the items on this list are unfinished from the first 2 lists. Completed items are in blue, black is the color for original post.

  1. Paint upstairs hall.

    Benjamin Moore's Moonshine for the upstairs hall.

    Benjamin Moore’s Moonshine for the upstairs hall.

  2. Hang photos in upstairs hall.
  3. Take dance lessons.
  4. Get video camera and upgrade blog.
  5. Install stair runner.

    These are stairs that really need rejuvenating.

    These are stairs that really need rejuvenating.

  6. Host five game nights.
  7. Host five other parties/get-togethers.
  8. Host one New Year’s Eve Party.

    During the renovation I've missed having parties.

    During the renovation I’ve missed having parties.

  9. Host a dinner party for 8.
  10. Organize trip to the Dominican Republic.
  11. Work on family recipe book.
  12. Eat vegan for one week.
  13. Host a swap meet.
  14. Host a tea party for my Birthday.
  15. Host a book club.
  16. Find a waterfall.
  17. See the Southern Cross in person.

    The Southern Cross.

    The Southern Cross.

  18. Make bread.
  19. Make mayonnaise.
  20. Make a local restaurant list of at least 10 items.
  21. Visit the Grand Canyon.
  22. Say “yes” to everything for a whole day.
  23. Do an anonymous favor.
  24. Go to the beach for a long weekend.
  25. Take 3 Bible studies.
  26. Host a scavenger hunt.
  27. Make a month’s worth of meals one weekend.
  28. Put a note somewhere (like in a book) for a stranger to find.
  29. Make a home maintenance calendar.
  30. Set blogging goals.
  31. Comment on 50 blogs. 7/50
  32. Get an iPod or mp3 player.
  33. Work on wardrobe, buy what I need, get rid of what I don’t, make a list of everything.
  34. Have a colonoscopy.
  35. Sort out things in attic by attaching children’s names, give away, sell, etc.
  36. Learn to copyright (watermark) photos.
  37. Complete legacy file.
  38. Make a photo album of Mommie.
  39. Paint some canvasses.
  40. Chapel in the yard at The Glade.
  41. Ride on a Vespa.

    I might want to buy one.

    I might want to buy one.

  42. Treat a friend to lunch.
  43. Locate and catalog local thrift stores.
  44. Design master bedroom décor and coordinate master bath.
  45. Develop a cleaning schedule.
  46. Dermatologist for major renovation.
  47. Write a novel based on work.
  48. Increase net worth by 25%.
  49. Organize etiquette books.
  50. Read Bible daily –Read Bible in 1 year.
  51. Have right knee problem corrected.
  52. Establish a gym workout for 5 days a week.
  53. Theatre weekend in NYC.
  54. Visit Statue of Liberty.

    I've been to the Crown but I want to go again with Charlie.

    I’ve been to the Crown but I want to go again with Charlie.

  55. Paint landscapes/seascapes on canvas/wood.
  56. Take a cruise.
  57. Memorize a poem.
  58. Make a household inventory with photos.
  59. Finish laundry room.

    This room needs to be finished.

    This room needs to be finished.

  60. Give heirlooms to children.
  61. Finish painting trim in pink bedroom.
  62. Make a master menu for 14 days of meals.
  63. Wash all the windows in the house.
  64. Paint dining room table – finish sanding, prime and paint.
  65. Paint kitchen table or build new one.

    Kitchen table

    Kitchen table

  66. Totally organize pink bathroom.
  67. Renew passport 2015.
  68. Do the weekly challenges at UnF your Habitat.
  69. Use my God box.
  70. Build bench for mudroom.
  71. Build shelves in master bedroom.

    I would love to have a wall of shelves in the bedroom.

    I would love to have a wall of shelves in the bedroom.

  72. Paint the master bedroom.
  73. Get a smartphone.
  74. Tile the conservatory bathroom
  75. Tile the master bathroom
  76. Bake bread
  77. Landscape the front yard

    The front yard needs some foundation plantings to soften up the edges of the house.

    The front yard needs some foundation plantings to soften up the edges of the house.

  78. Read 5 biographies
  79. Read 5 classics
  80. See 3 concerts
  81. Design Etsy signature packaging.
  82. Fund my Revocable Trust.
  83. Spend an afternoon at a botanical garden.
  84. Get rid of rubble pile and grade driveway.

    The rubble pile is diminishing but I want it gone.

    The rubble pile is diminishing but I want it gone.

  85. Have dinner by candlelight.
  86. Achieve my personal weight goal.
  87. Send anonymous flowers to someone.
  88. Give a 100% tip.
  89. Get rid of 5 big items from the house.
  90. Build a beautiful master closet.
  91. Rent Cottage.

    Glade Cottage would be perfect rented to a grad student from the nearby university.

    Glade Cottage would be perfect rented to a grad student from the nearby university.

  92. Design and print business cards.
  93. Celebrate our 5th anniversary.
  94. Organize cookbooks.
  95. Hang gallery wall in kitchen hall.

    I have space for a gallery wall in the hallway created by the pantry.

    I have space for a gallery wall in the hallway created by the pantry.

  96. Organize papers, bills, and contracts from renovation.
  97. Apply to county for tax abatement due to renovation.
  98. Take car for a tune up.
  99. Detail my car.

    My car has been used to haul a lot of things and could use a good detailing.

    My car has been used to haul a lot of things and could use a good detailing.

  100. Drink a glass of water every morning.
  101. Private

Would you make a “101 in 1001″ list?

I Should Clean Up More Often

Last week I found  uncovered this quilt which I hung over the bed in the Treetops room.

The quilt hangs below the back of the headboard.

The quilt hangs below the back of the headboard.

Still digging around I found two southwestern style throw rugs which are also in the color scheme of the back bedroom.

Each rug is about 18" by 36".

Each rug is about 18″ by 36″.

This is the question: What do I do with them?  I’m not going to use them as rugs.

I think the rugs behind the bed might take the entire room from "cottage" to "Spanish influence".

I think the rugs behind the bed might take the entire room from “cottage” to “Spanish influence”.

But I could replace the quilt over the bed with them. (I’m not opposed to changing the pillow shams and losing the purple tones.)

If I used them instead of the quilt the style of the room would change quite a bit -- I'm ready for a change.

If I used them instead of the quilt the style of the room would change quite a bit — I’m ready for a change.

In that case should they hang vertically or horizontally?

I'm thinking the bottom picture would be the better way to hang (and easier).

I’m thinking the bottom picture would be the better way to hang (and easier).

Or I could make two decorative pillows with them. One side would be green with fringe and the other orange.

A simple pillow cover.

A simple pillow cover.

 

The reverse side of the pillow.

The reverse side of the pillow.

What think ye?

Do you prefer a comforter or a bedspread?

 

Hardiebacker is Heavy

Our friend came over to give Charlie a hand putting Hardiebacker in the new showers.

The master bathroom shower.

The master bathroom shower is about 7′-6″ long by 3′-6″ wide.

We had had delivered 4 by 8 sheets of Hardiebacker which are much, much heavier than traditional drywall but are the go-to product for wet areas that are going to be tiled which is why we’re using it in the master shower and the conservatory shower.

The shower in the conservatory bathroom is about 6' long by 4 ' wide.

The shower in the conservatory bathroom is about 6′ long by 4 ‘ wide.

The greenboard ceiling was already installed when the first sheet was marked to go on the window wall of the shower.

DryWallBathroom

Out friend forgot his grinder (and of course we don’t have one) so he cut the 24-inch circle for the window with a circular saw. (Circular saws are not meant to cut circles; the name derives from the shape of the blade.)

On the first try to install the sheet was flipped and so did not exactly line up. After turning it around the round hole matched up with the window.

On the first try to install the Hardiebacker in the master shower, the sheet was flipped and so did not exactly line up. After turning it around the round hole matched up with the window.

With no help from yours truly they muscled the piece onto the wall and held it up with special 1-1/4 inch Hardiebacker screws which come with their own special square drill bit.

Master shower

Master shower – from the photo above you can see how two people could easily fit in the master shower.

They worked on the master bathroom cutting and installing all but the small easy pieces which Charlie felt he could do by himself.

This last wall wasn't crucial because only covering the insulation is necessary to have finished before inspection. But we're on it.

This last wall wasn’t crucial because only covering the insulation is necessary to have finished before inspection. But we’re on it.

I wanted to make sure our friend did not leave before cutting the porthole piece for the conservatory bathroom since I was pretty sure we would not be able to do it.   He makes everything look easy and knows some tricks for making things work that we would never think of. He’s a humble guy though. When we mention what a building genius he is (and we mention it a lot because we’re in awe) he comes right back with “let me show you my scales on the piano”. (Charlie is a professional pianist and even I know my fingerpower exercises.) Touché! 

Conservatory shower -- the showers look similar but are different in size and orientation.

Conservatory shower — the showers look similar but are different in size and orientation.

Enough frivolity.

The conservatory shower is on the ground floor.

The conservatory shower is on the ground floor.

We’re almost ready for the inspector.

What is it you do better than anyone else? Ah, yes, there is something.