Sunday, April 30, 2006

Built Wood Cart

Sunday, April 30

Today I was feeling constructive enough to take on a project that I've had an idea about for while now. I have many good scrap pieces of wood left over from trim-work and such that I want to keep them, but I want them organized and mobile. I been wanting to build a wood cart and I decided today was the day to do it.

I had left over lumber in the basement that was perfect for this project. Using it I killed 2 birds with one stone... got rid of the lumber in the basement and organized other lumber with it. I cut it all up, screwed it together and even screwed some caster wheels on it. I made it with 4 areas to stand the wood in. The 2 ends can hold longer thinner pieces, cause it's more constrained area and the center areas are for the larger pieces.

It turned out well I think.......... lookout.... chick with hand-tools :) . Anyways.... now my piles of wood are mobile if need be....... and I will need to do that soon, cause next on my list is to paint the garage.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

Basement - shelving

Saturday, April 29

I walked down into the basement the other day and decided I really need to get this organized. Up until now the basement has been the place where things without a home got placed.... such as xmas decorations, paint cans and other items. It's time to get stuff off the floor and out of the way.

I decided that wire shelves on brackets could be the way to go. Here's the thing though.... I needed a way to anchor the brackets to. I found it spontaneously at Home Depot, while browsing through a book there. There are such things as brackets that hook on top of foundation walls. There're great and highly recommend them!

They get slipped onto the end of a bracket, which turns the bracket into an upside down L-shape. The L-shape then hooks on top of the foundation and hangs down. The shelves can then be hooked into the bracket hooks as usual.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Basement Stairwell - re-installed railing

Thursday, April 27

For the last couple of days I've been painting the basement railing with poly. I was able to re-install it tonight. Let me tell ya.... it's so much easier when the holes are already there :)

Poof... 5 minutes later there was a railing.

Monday, April 24, 2006

Septic - problem resolved

Monday, April 24

In the late afternoon, I got word from Tim, G&K sewer finally did show up. Denny did figure out what was wrong. This time it actually wasn't the outlet (shocking I know). It turned out to be the bottom float on pump was stuck on the wall.

He also installed a tamper seal on the lid. He stated that he wouldn't give us a warranty without it, which is fine, as long as he stands by that statement.

Apparently Denny was in rare form when he was there. However TIm didn't get the full effect that I had cause he wasn't swearing, like he was when I had met him on the day of installation. He was however giving Tim grief and trying to stir up some sort of trouble.

For instance...... apparently he was checking up on us and called Barden and stated that we give subcontractors trouble. Tim said he went off on him about his accusations. He reminded him that he was the one that pointed out how much the original plumber screwed up and reminded him that was swearing, in front of me, cause was so pissed about the plumbing screw-up.

After Denny had a refresher of that day, Tim stated to him that he has no idea of the details nor issues and to not jump to conclusions based on talking to Barden (who's going to talk bad about us)..... and that we only had issues with the sub-contractors that had caused damage or had been unprofessional to us.

I swear he just wanted to cause some trouble though........ he stated many things to Tim, that caused a very untrustworthy feeling for me. Like......... he stated that we were against code for having a garbage disposal and that it was illegal with sand filters, but side-barred to Tim that "he won't tell anyone".

I knew it was BS, but just to make sure, I directly checked with a friend of mine at the Healthy Dept,, who that basically stated he was full of s---. The only thing the Heath Dept advises is not to put large amounts of food in the disposal cause it takes longer to break down and recommend to get the septic cleaned out on a more regular basis than if we didn't have one.

*roll eyes*........ yep..... I just love when people BS.

Septic issue - phone call

Monday, April 24

Tim talked to Denny, owner of G&K Sewer in the morning. I was present, but decided to stand on the sidelines, cause I knew I'd just yell.

You have to love it..... he actually told Tim that that it's not maintenance free. Like no kidding.... every 3-4 yrs we have to get it cleaned out, but I'm sorry, I've never heard of an owner having to run an extension cord every week to the outlet in order for it to work.

This dude then actually had the audacity to state that he'd charge us to fix it. Um.... like no.... esp if it's due to crappy workmanship, not to mention the fact that it's not even a yr old.

Tim then asked who had done the original electrical. First Denny stated we should contact our electrician and blamed it on him, that it must be his fault. Tim came back at him with the fact that we had talked to our electrician and he had nothing to do with the septic electrical.

After dancing around the issue for more than 5 minutes of Tim re-asking him, he admitted that he had done the electrical. Tim asked if he was a certified electrician and if not, why was he doing the electrical work, instead of an certified electrician. He told Tim that he does it all the time and no one ever complained before.

Yeah... ya know what I call that..... luck.

So.... apparently.... the town has no jurisdiction over the septic electrical work, cause the septic is the county's jurisdiction. But get this..... the county apparently checks to make sure that the septic is up to health codes. That's it.... as long as the septic works.

No wonder why the electrical looked like a half-ass job.... no one freakn checks it..... and G&K sewer apparently know that.

Well.... after that, we basically stated tim him that maybe he should've had a certified electrician hook it up, cause we're sick and tired of running an extension cord to it to jury-rig it to work.

He finally said that he'd be over later today to fix it. Tim also called Brain to ask his opinion on how he normally hooks up a septic, when he's hired to install the wiring. Tim also called Jerry, our plumber, out of curiosity, and asked him the same. Jerry stated that he never hooks it up himself and has an electrician do it. Damn it, I thought.......... I wish we met Jerry before we starting building.

Sunday, April 23, 2006

Septic alarm... again, painted basement stairwell

Sunday, April 23


One phrase came to mind...... "I knew it". I just kept stating that over and over when that darn alarm had gone off. I was so very pissed.

If we were comparing ourselves to cops..... Tim would be the good cop.... and I'm definitely the bad cop. I have no idea how Tim remained so calm when leaving a message. I hit my boiling point with the shotty workmanship of G&K Sewer. I called back and left the "bad cop" message..... which basically stated that they'd better get their asses to our property and fix their crappy work or else the news, Better Business Bureau and every media I can think of hears about the facts.

I never-never-ever thought I'd be one of those people, but Sales Associates of WNY and the lovely subcontracts they found for our build has proved me wrong.

I was so full of adrenaline that I decided to paint, cause I knew I wouldn't be able to sleep if I didn't burn it off. So I painted the basement stairwell. It felt nice to get it done.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Botanical Gardens - Bamboo plant

Friday, April 21

Yesterday I left work early to go to the Botanical Gardens with my parents. We go every year around Easter time to catch the show. When I was in the gift shop I had seen bamboo plants for sale. I had mentioned that I was surprised that no one had gotten us a bamboo plant yet. So, my Dad decided to get me one :)

I love the cool little bamboo plants that are out there these days. I mentioned to Tim that I wouldn't mind having one in every room. I think he thought I was kidding :)

Anyways.... I put my bamboo plant in one of the vases left over from our centerpieces at our wedding. I filled the bottom with sea glass, placed the bamboo in it and set it on the hearth. I love it..... it's so zen looking..... thanks Dad :)

Thursday, April 20, 2006

garage opener - fax to Mike

Thursday, April 20

So we get word from Sales Associates of WNY about the garage door opener. Apparently they won't give us a refund for the opener without a receipt. That I didn't have a problem with. What I had a problem with is Mike's attitude. They made it sound like the world would end if I didn't fax the info right away.... like pronto... and copped an attitude with us like they had been waiting months for this.

Um... wait..... is this the same office that couldn't bother calling us back promptly, but yet they want the fax asap. Please.

I was so irritated. I not only faxed Mike the receipt.... I faxed the cover of the manuel and a picture of our installed opener. Also included was a nice little note on there.......

"Just a random thought....
If I was considered the general contractor, on paper, (and every single decision goes through the GC), it's interesting how the garage door opener (among many other things) were decided upon by yourself or Joe Bologna, then ordered without asking or having any knowledge of preference to which Tim or I wanted.

Where's the paperwork stating that we were asked what kind and what brand or features we wanted in the garage opener?.... If we wanted a belt driven or chain or keyless entry?

It's been stated that I was the GC on paper, but in reality, decisions were made without our knowledge (period)"

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Basement stairwell - primed

Tuesday, April 11

I finished priming the basement stairwell tonight. Sunday I had just trimmed out the door-frame and corners. Tonight I had the chance to prime the rest of the stairwell. Let me tell you... just having it primed, it fells so much better even just to have the basement door open. Before, I didn't want to even leave it open cause it just reminded me of one one thing I need to finish. But hopefully soon, I can paint it and check this off my list.

Sunday, April 09, 2006

Reconstruct basement doorframe & primed

Sunday, April 9

For the last couple of days I've been reconstructing part of the basement doorway. When the "perfect job" of the drywall was done, there was a horrible bow formed. This was due to a little of the framework not lineup up correctly, but mostly due to the hanging job. I blame the bow on the hangers, that was the moment that it could've very well been fixed. But..... since nor our builder or drywall people seem to care about details, like the entrance of someone's basement, this was never fixed. Basements and garages are on the bottom of the list it seemed. They didn't care how anything looked. Their philosophy was.... "it's just a basement".

I was told, by our foreman Joe, that it's only the basement and no one will see it... that it can be hidden by the trim. Well.... that's all great and dandy for him, but I see it every time I walk into the basement and it bugs the crap out of me. Our trimmer, Jim had done his best to "hide" it (as Joe put it), by the trim, but the bow was so bad that it didn't "hide" it at all.

The only way to really fix it, was to cut away the drywall and rebuild it. So that's what I've been doing for the last couple of days. Unfortunately, I can't find the images pics of my progress (it's either on another flash card or I deleted them off my camera)..... anyways......... I had taken some of the drywall, prior to the trim work that shows the bow though.

Since the plaster was done and dry, I started painting the primer in the stairwell today. I'm going to paint it the pebbled courtyard with one wall the orange. Hey... just cause it's just a basement to some, doesn't mean it can't be fun looking to me.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Closet Configurations

Wednesday, April 5

After not having any idea how I wanted my side of the closet set up, I decided that maybe it should have a setup with that in mind. The white wire shelving is easy to install, but once it's gets nailed in, that's it. I thought of the brackets that can be bought, but I was never crazy about the "white" look anyways.

I came across a solution that I believe will work well. It's a closet kit made by Rubbermaid name Closet Configurations. It's a wire shelf system that you can configure anyway you want. And unlike traditional wire shelves, the wires don't have to be cut cause it works with a telescoping format. Best of all, it has a nickel finish, so it matches our other decor.

Tim and I installed it today. And it's just as it advertised. It was fast, simple and we were able to rearrange it when we didn't like something.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Garage Door Opener - Barden issue

Tuesday, April 4

So... a while back in December of last year, I purchased a garage door opener (out-of-pocket), because I had been under the impression that one didn't come with the package. It wasn't installed when the garage door was installed, nor did anyone mention anything about it being part of the package. Well... apparently it was part of the package.

We found this out by contacted the overhead door company. A bill was sent to us for the overhead door recently. This was strange to us because the door was installed way back in 2005 on May 9th. Tim called up Mike, at Sales Associates of WNY and asked what the heck is that about. Apparently the Overhead door people get paid when the job is complete.... which is something no one brought up at closing. And apparently a door opener was also in the package..... which no one told us about either.

The opener was never covered in any meeting we had...... nor were we even asked what kind of opener we wanted. We had no selection, no one asked us if that model was ok or if we wanted to upgrade.... nothing.

Tim was told by Mike that it was our fault for stopping contact. Now I ask you..... how is something that happened months before we even had issues with Mike our fault? Not to mention the fact that we never had stopped contact (as our phone records prove). This is plain and simple something that Mike or Joe failed to mention and now is shifting blame.

Also... beyond that....... besides finding out that info.... we also found out that the wiring for the door opener remote was covered up, by drywall. Wait... wait..... but I thought that Joe stated that it was a "perfect" drywall job......... hmmmm. Here's my favorite. The person that Tim talked to at the overhead door place said that Barden is famous for covering over their wiring.

Anyways..... Mike tried to blame this on us and even stated that Barden has nothing to do with it and that we'd have to take it up with the subcontractor to get a refund. Mike freakn lied to Tim straight out about that one. The overhead door people said that the door opener had already been paid for by barden and we need to get the refund through Barden. I'm so sick of finding out Mike lied about something.

Oh.... here's the other kicker..... Mike also stated that he was done talking to Tim, he ruined his day by calling and hung up on him. Niiiiiiice customer service there Mike. Somehow I find it hard to believe owners with $400,000 builds would be treated that way.

The good news is that the owner of the overhead door company was nice about everything..... and even talked Tim through were to find the wiring (under the freakn drywall). He also said that if Mike gave us trouble with the refund, just let him know and we could pick up the opener (since it was ours) and then we could at least sell it to recoup some of the money.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

Panel Curtains - bed2 & bed3

Sunday, April 2

Today we became an anti-fishbowl. The last of the front windows have panel curtains over them creating our own self-sustaining Kris & Tim world :)

I assembled and installed the panel curtains in the second and third bedrooms, which are in the front of the house. From the road, it's nice to see the house without cardboard in the windows. It just looked so bad...... I mean I suppose cardboard can be a style, but I think the panel curtains have a little more curb appeal :)

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Panel Curtains - Finished Kitchen

Saturday, April 1

Since I had gone Ikea yesterday, today we were able to finish off the panel curtains for the sliding glass door. It looks awesome and it's so nice to be able to dim the room now... esp to protect the flooring from the direct sunlight it was receiving without it.

It really gives the kitchen a nice cozy feeling now and makes it feel like a room. Without the panels, it was a bit too open to the world. Even though the door faces the backyard, it's nice to have closure, esp to have something to look at instead of the blackness of nighttime.