Category Archives: interior

It’s going to get bedder

With apologies for a bad pun …

Jacquela asked for a new mattress. Today, Sleep Number delivered the C4 system — two California King FlexFit bases that raise and lower the head of the bed, two inflatable mattresses, a mattress pad and mattress protector, and a SleepIQ remote — with an Android App to download.

1-dsc_3673Out went the old mattress and box spring. Yay.

The bed comes with MAC address. Remarkable. A networkable bed. Come the apocalypse, we’re all going to sleep on dirt. For now, Steven can be halfway around the planet fiddling with bed and HVAC and door camera adjustments.

After adding the MAC address of the mattress to the network filters at the router, Steven sat on the floor with Nexus 6P in hand. Bluetooth sees the MAC address of the mattress, but refuses to pair. Twenty minutes with tech support later, we determine that the Android 7.0 and Bluetooth builds are not compatible with the current SleepIQ driver; we’re going to have to wait for an update. But … the iPad does pair — and two minutes later Steven is swiping up and down to raise and lower the head of the bed, and adjusting how firm the mattress is.

Cool.

Now, Jacquela gets to determine how high she needs to incline the head of the bed to switch off Steven’s snoring.

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Notes, 10 Feb. 2016

Steven arrived at Emerald Hill about 230 pm to learn that the City of Austin chopped down a tree in the neighbor’s yard to clear obstructions from the power lines. The company hired to do the job — Asplundah — left the branches behind in Steven’s back yard, photo above. Ron Dahlke says Asplundah will be back Thursday. Asplundah has been working all over Northwest Hills, clearing trees from power lines up and down nearly every block.

Ron Dahlke and team cleared the original two-car garage of his desk, a tool box, and more. This is what might be described as a bittersweet milestone -- Ron is preparing to move out of Emerald Hill and the remodel is coming to an end. It is, also, a mile marker for how close we are to done -- and moving in.
Ron Dahlke and team cleared the original two-car garage of his desk, a tool box, and more. This is what might be described as a bittersweet milestone — Ron is preparing to move out of Emerald Hill and the remodel is coming to an end. It is, also, a mile marker for how close we are to done — and moving in.
Team Ranserve installed the window screens today. Hard to see in this photo. Ron and Steven walked the house. There are six screens not yet installed that need to be delivered.
Team Ranserve installed the window screens today. Hard to see in this photo. Ron and Steven walked the house. There are six screens not yet installed that need to be delivered.
Rodriguez from Gilsa Construction hacked away today at the remaining form and hardened concrete spillage left over from pouring the foundation for the new garage bay.
Rodriguez from Gilsa Construction hacked away today at the remaining form and hardened concrete spillage left over from pouring the foundation for the new garage bay.
Elite Air Conditioning began swapping out the straight registers for curved -- as required by the Austin Green Build program.
Elite Air Conditioning began swapping out the straight registers for curved — as required by the Austin Green Build program.
Steven began assembling and test fitting the Ikea Stuva cabinets in the mudroom -- confirming that one of the baseboards will need to be trimmed for the cabinets to fit left to right.
Steven began assembling and test fitting the Ikea Stuva cabinets in the mudroom — confirming that one of the baseboards will need to be trimmed for the cabinets to fit left to right.
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Fire, placed

Kris and Matt from Ranserve installed the fireplace glass doors today.

Matt keeps it level and flush to the wall while Kris screws the mounts inside.
Matt keeps it level and flush to the wall while Kris screws the mounts inside.
And nearly done. Kris and Matt had to adjust the alignment of the glass doors.
And nearly done. Kris and Matt had to adjust the alignment of the glass doors.

 

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Notes, 15 Jan. 2015

Chris from Central Texas Custom Cabinets continues to finish out the kitchen and pantry cabinets.

Steven walked the house today with Elizabeth, who measured for blinds — a candidate supplier; it will all come down to budget.

Ron opened up the drywall behind the mudroom shower -- where the tankless water unit will soon be installed -- to add blocking behind the shower panels. This will enable the plumbers to properly screw the shower head fixture tight to the plastic panels.
Ron opened up the drywall behind the mudroom shower — where the tankless water unit will soon be installed — to add blocking behind the shower panels. This will enable the plumbers to properly screw the shower head fixture tight to the plastic panels.

Ron needs an escutcheon at the pot filler on the backsplash wall. Ron also needs a push-in-pop-out drain for the vanity sink in the mudroom — because there is no room behind the faucet for the pull that would normally open and close the drain in the sink. Ferguson does not carry an escutcheon for the pot filler. Steven went to Lowe’s with a shopping list. He found two candidates for the escutcheon. The drain was out of stock. On a field trip to a second Lowe’s after dinner with Jacquela, he found the only two candidate devices. Ron and the plumbers will now decide which one to install. The loser will go back to Lowe’s.

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Notes, 12 Jan. 2016

Above, Jacinto mortars brick where the old garage meets the new Hardieboard siding.

Inside, Jacinto cements the exposed mesh around the fireplace.
Inside, Jacinto cements the exposed mesh around the fireplace.

Steven purchased satin-nickel house numbers from Lowe’s. Jacquela approved the numbers. Steven and Ron discussed where to mount them at the front of the house.

Steven purchased three motion-sensor double flood lights from Lowe’s, to be installed at the new garage bay, at the side door near the kitchen, and at the back door.

Steven also ordered the Ring door chime for the front door, to go with the Ring doorbell. Steve the electrician reminded Steven to get this done. It’s done.

The island countertop is propped against the family room wall, getting it out of the way for Aaron to repair the island cabinets.
The island countertop is propped against the family room wall, getting it out of the way for Aaron to repair the island cabinets.

 

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Talk and walk the week

9 a.m. Monday morning to talk and walk the week ahead.

Ron Dahlke from Ranserve, left, and Mauricio from Gilsa, right, recovering from his heart attack, meet Steven to plan the concrete pour for the garage foundation. We're aiming for Thursday, depending on city inspections of forms and steelwork. In front of the house, we plan the pavers that will replace part of the walk to the patio, and the landing in front of the porch. The cardboard on the ground approximates the location and size of the landing. The pavers will extend around the front of the house to the site of the former kitchen deck, which Gilsa has removed via Bobcat. Gilsa will now regrade the ex-deck to ensure water flows away from the side door off the kitchen. And ... Gilsa will also regrade behind the garage and enlarge the concrete slab to be used for the HVAC condenser. All this will be consequential toward finishing the house.
Ron Dahlke from Ranserve, left, and Mauricio from Gilsa, right, recovering from his heart attack, meet Steven to plan the concrete pour for the garage foundation. We’re aiming for Thursday, depending on city inspections of forms and steelwork. In front of the house, we plan the pavers that will replace part of the walk to the patio, and the landing in front of the porch. The cardboard on the ground approximates the location and size of the landing. The pavers will extend around the front of the house to the site of the former kitchen deck, which Gilsa has removed via Bobcat. Gilsa will now regrade the ex-deck to ensure water flows away from the side door off the kitchen. And … Gilsa will also regrade behind the garage and enlarge the concrete slab to be used for the HVAC condenser. All this will be consequential toward finishing the house.

Above, an army of 10 painters is sanding down the walls and trim, and taping more protective paper over the stairs and floors, preparing the interior of the house for final painting.

Over the weekend, Aaron from Central Texas Custom Cabinets installed the final box -- the small cabinet at the top of the pantry at left of the side kitchen door.
Over the weekend, Aaron from Central Texas Custom Cabinets installed the final box — the small cabinet at the top of the pantry at left of the side kitchen door.
Chris from Central Texas Custom Cabinets scribes the "skiin" panel that will finish off the end of this run of cabinets at the oven and microwave wall.
Chris from Central Texas Custom Cabinets scribes the “skin” panel that will finish off the end of this run of cabinets at the oven and microwave wall.
The skin that finishes the run of cabinets on the refrigerator wall.
The skin that finishes the run of cabinets on the refrigerator wall.
Upstairs in bath 3, Cris from Ranserve is rebuilding the drain line to ensure that the emergency cleanout is 8 inches off the floor. That elevation ensures we don't have to cut up the vanity to get access to the cleanout. Cris will repeat this surgery in the master bath, upstairs, and in bath 2, downstairs. After which, he will patch the drywall, then turn the wall over to the painters for sanding, priming, painting -- at which point he will finally be able to install the vanities.
Upstairs in bath 3, Cris from Ranserve, supervised by his shadow, is rebuilding the drain line to ensure that the emergency cleanout is 8 inches off the floor. That elevation ensures we don’t have to cut up the vanity to get access to the cleanout. Cris will repeat this surgery in the master bath, upstairs, and in bath 2, downstairs. After which, he will patch the drywall, then turn the wall over to the painters for sanding, priming, painting — at which point he will finally be able to install the vanities.
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Notes, 27 Nov. 2015

Above — Steven carried one of the kitchen stools to Emerald Hill for a test fitting under the island. It works. But he may ¬†need to trim an inch or two off the height of each leg to create more clearance.

Some of the "loot," so far ...
Some of the “loot,” so far …

For Black Friday, FedEx and the USPS delivered:

  • 14 passage locksets, Schlage F10 V LAT 619 CEN, ordered online via Amazon at $28.63 per set vs $34.98 from Home Depot or $39.97 from Lowe’s.
  • 3 deadbolts, Schlage B60 N 619 CEN at $31.80 from Amazon, vs $35.80 at Home Depot or $35.97 at Lowe’s.
  • 1 entry set, Schlage F60 V CEN 619 LAT, $126.65 from Amazon vs $157 at Lowe’s and apparently not sold by Home Depot.
  • 1 Ring wi-fi enabled doorbell.
  • 1 Rainmachine HD-12 “smart” sprinkler controller that connects to NOAA weather forecasts, promising to cut water use when watering the lawn.

Still on order — privacy and dummy door handles, and the “smart” lock for the front door.

Steven observes: Ordering from Amazon is saving multiple hundreds of dollars on lock sets, door handles, deadbolts, smart devices.

It may be the Friday after Thanksgiving, but two of the painters are working inside the house, filling nail holes with wood putty, then sanding.
It may be the Friday after Thanksgiving, but two of the painters are working inside the house, filling nail holes with wood putty, then sanding.
The hickory floor is finished in what will be Jadin's bedroom.
The hickory floor is finished in what will be Jadin’s bedroom.

 

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Notes, 15 Oct. 2015

Early start to a busy day.

Above, Steven¬†swept up and collected these “bullets” left behind by Basem as he installed the platforms for the kitchen cabinets. The empty shells have been fired. The shells with tips are still “live ammo” capable of driving the pin nail at right into the concrete slab when hammered with a nail gun. We will not be leaving these lying around.

DSC_4830
Steven arrived at Emerald Hill at 825 am after dropping Jadin off at school. Delivery truck from Ferguson was waiting, with the final missing piece of the shower for bath 2 — Jadin’s bath — the shelf unit that fits into the corner of the shower. Now Ron can finish installing that shower.
Steven continued experimenting with tile layouts. Here is how Jacquela wants the tiles aligned in the kitchen. Steven approves.
Steven continued experimenting with tile layouts. Here is how Jacquela wants the tiles aligned in the kitchen — north/south. Steven approves.
And here is how we will lay out the grid of tiles in bath 2 -- east/west.
And here is how we will lay out the grid of tiles in bath 2 — east/west.

Julian and his crew of tile setters arrived about 9 am. Steven walked the tile patterns and layouts with Julian. One open question is — there are apparently two distinct designs in the tile selected for the kitchen floor. One is linear. The other is mottled. Steven hopes there is enough linear to cover the kitchen floor, and enough mottled to use in the mudroom, mudroom bath and pantry — to help delineate the spaces. We won’t know until Julian opens all the boxes.

Kyle from Cowart arrived about 930 to teach Steven about garage doors. We might be able to save and refurbish the existing door, at several hundred dollars. But it still needs a new motor and remote — Steven is holding out for wi-fi and Internet access to the garage door controls. Kyle reports this can all be packaged with a new door, with full warranty, for about $1,000, total. Steven and Jacquela will continue this conversation Saturday when we meet with Kamla.

Upstairs in the master shower, Pedro applies a second layer of blue waterproofing to the Hardie board.
Upstairs in the master shower, Pedro applies a second layer of blue waterproofing to the Hardie board.
A day or two back, Ron and Cris installed this screen mesh across the exterior of the exhaust vent -- to keep critters and bugs out.
A day or two back, Ron and Cris installed this screen mesh across the exterior of the exhaust vent — to keep critters and bugs out.
More history uncovered and discovered. At some point, the family room at Emerald Hill was carpeted -- and an arc of some other flooring was installed at the back door. Look closely at the gray concrete for the clefts hollowed out in the slab by the nails in the carpet tack.
More history uncovered and discovered. At some point, the family room at Emerald Hill was carpeted — and an arc of some other flooring was installed at the back door. Look closely at the gray concrete for the clefts hollowed out in the slab by the nails in the carpet tack.
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