Late yesterday, Trey from DeAtley Tile & Stone cleaned and degreased the stained concrete flooring on the first floor of Sea Eagle. Today, he’s back to wax and polish the floor — above.
A second shot of Trey at work, waxing and polishing the stained concrete for showing to potential buyers.
Before finishing for the day, Trey talks with Cloral, the painter, about how to protect the new finish on the concrete. Cloral is going to refinish the maple cabinets at the island. Trey instructs: “put down cardboard to protect the floor, and do not tape the cardboard to the floor.”
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.
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.
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.
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.
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 …
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.
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.
The hickory floor is finished in what will be Jadin’s bedroom.
Jacquela danced ballet as a girl. Somewhere, boxed for the move, are her toe shoes. Today, at Emerald Hill, she gets her dance floor.
Landers is almost done installing the prefinished hickory planks.
Step into the house from the side door at the kitchen, walk through the kitchen — here is the family room, with the fireplace hearth at right and the passageways to the library and entry hall at left.
Ivan leads Steven on a guided tour of the wood floors. This is the library, with Steven’s office through the door at left.
The floor in Steven’s office.
From Steven’s office, looking back through the library to the family room, with the entry hall and stairway through the passageway to the left.
The entry hall, looking back to the library at right and family room at left.
From the far back corner of the family room, with Ivan walking through the entry hall, the kitchen at left, and the library between.
Upstairs, the loft.
Looking down the upstairs hall from the loft to the master suite.
The master bedroom.
Looking down the hall in the master suite, from the bedroom to the bath, with the master closet door halfway down the hall on right.
The master closet, illuminated by cellphone LEDs — Steven at left, Ivan at right. The ceiling lights need to be installed and powered up.
Looking back toward the master bedroom, from the master bath, with the closet now at left and the upstairs hall at right.
Down the upstairs hall to the loft, from the master suite. From where Steven shot this, the bedroom is at left, bathroom at right.
Back downstairs … Bedroom 1 at the front of the house, glued up and almost done.
From bedroom 1, looking through the hallway to bedroom 2 at the back of the house.
Bedroom 2 — this will be Jadin’s bedroom.
Fun shot. Steven backed up into one of Jadin’s closets to shoot Manny walking past, carrying planks to cut to length.
The closet under the stairs.
What will become the electronics closet.
Ivan holds a tube of the colored caulk used to close gaps between the wood planks and tile floors.
The woodshop at the back door that the Army of Landers is using to cut lumber — two sliding miter saws and one portable table saw.
For a history lesson,
Emerald Hill is invaded today by the Army of
Landers — Ivan and his team of eight tasked with installing the new hickory wood floors — Victor, Diego, Carlos, Leonardo, Aldo, Miguel, Manny and Gerardo.
Steven anthropomorphizes. She’s cute in that flirty miniskirt. But then she shows up in that little black dress …
Ron says it took Ivan and his army 10 minutes to remove what remained of the existing oak flooring from the upstairs hall, and the office, library, family room and entry hall downstairs. Ivan says it took 30 minutes to remove the glue. Here is most of it, loaded into a van for recycling.
Then they floated the downstairs slab and some of the upstairs subflooring level and smooth with a lightweight concrete mix. Here’s the entry hall with a glimpse into the library. The concrete would dry quickly if the weather was warm and sunny — but today is cool and cloudy. It takes several hours for the concrete to dry — even with fans blowing air across the material.
While they wait for the concrete to dry, Ivan and the army prepped — moving a lot of the prefinished lumber in boxes and the raw hickory treads into bath 2, out of the way. They also stacked boxes of the hickory strategically, putting it within easy reach of where they plan to install floors.
By 2 pm, they are pulling a string line tight down the middle of the upstairs hallway — and snapping a chalk line to follow with the wood.
Manny trowels out glue along one side of the chalk line. The army leaves clear the other side of the chalk line as a passage between rooms.
The first boards are down, starting at the entrance to the master suite at the back of the photo, traveling toward the stairwell.
While the crew upstairs is installing wood, downstairs, Victor uses a jamb cutter to trim clearances from door casings and base board. This saw screams. Victor is wearing ear buds as ear plugs.
Victor flicks away the cut casing.
He test fits a plank of hickory flooring under the casing.
And pivots around the corner of the casing for a second test fitting.
The master bedroom is started. Blue painters tape helps to hold the boards tightly together, to prevent the glue from lubricating the planks apart.
30 minutes later.
45 minutes after that, done — and moving into the master closet.
The master closet and hallway, halfway done.
Two views of the many layers of the hickory planks. From the edge and top …
From the edge and back, with the expansion slots visible to help the wood flex on uneven subfloors.
Manny finishes the last board in the upstairs loft.
Scraping smooth and clean the floated concrete floor in the family room next to the kitchen tile — removing bumps and ridges that might make the wood flooring uneven. It’s all done on hands and knees — scraping, sweeping, scraping, sweeping.
Pulling a chalk line from front to back of house to guide the proper installation of the hickory — straight and square.
Ivan and his army first work to the left of the chalk line, spreading glue up to the line and then swiftly gluing down planks. Stock is laid out to the right of the chalk line. The mallets are thumping. The house resonates with each blow.
Spreading glue to the other side of the chalk line.
By 4 pm on a cold and cloudy day, the army needs lights to work by.
Watching the mallet fly by shadowed light.
From the Oxford Dictionary: “A piece of journalism that presents a chronological account of an event or series of events.”
Steven visited Emerald Hill three times today while also working from his desk computer and by phone — at 10 am after dropping off Jadin at school, at 2 pm to meet with Ron and before meeting with Renee at ProSource to select tile for the kitchen backsplash and master shower floor, and again at 4 pm after leaving ProSource and before Jadin “walked home from school.” Here are photos from the evolving day.
During the 10 am visit, Julian is hammering out a concrete tile at the entry that was damaged during construction — to be replaced.
Testifying to the quality of work done by the tilesetters, it took an electric jackhammer to chip out the tile.
At 2 pm, the tilesetters are gone and the tile has been replaced — and is cemented into place, along with the two tiles closest to the front door.
In between the 10 am and 2 pm trips to Emerald Hill, Steven received the first quote for the two-bay garage door from Cowart Door Systems.
At 10 am, Cezar Ernesto, left, and Ernesto Jovini are packing sandbags with roadbase for the middle island of the new garage foundation.
At 2 pm, after compacting the roadbase in the center of the island, they are checking for loose fill and filling gaps.
At 230, they are compacting again.
At 4 pm, the middle island is finished. Cezar and Ernesto have begun to form the third island with sandbags and use the Bobcat to deliver more roadbase.
At 230, Aaron arrives from the cabinet shop to test fit the horizontal storage bench that will be installed in the front entry. Ron helped Aaron pivot the bench into position while Steven stood back to use his hands to take this photo.
At 4 pm, Enrique on the painting team is using wood putty to file all the nail holes in the trim installed by Shane and Peter, the carpenters. This photo was shot with Steven’s cameraphone, which opted to almost focus on the ladder in the foreground.
At 4 pm, Kathleen reported by email that Ranserve had received the wire transfer payment of Draw #5 from SouthStar Bank.
At 530, by email, Ron Dahlke reported that ATS inspected and passed the wallboard installation.
Shane and Peter relocated the wood shop upstairs to the loft, out of the family room downstairs. It’s messy work. Above, Shane shovels the sawdust and cutoffs into the trash bin.
Shane and Peter plan to finish phase 1 of the carpentry tomorrow. Today … they are blasting through casing installation around doors, and baseboard installation in rooms with tile or laminate floors where we don’t have to wait for the
hickory flooring to be installed after Thanksgiving.
This is the square-edge shoe molding that Peter will nail to the baseboard in the train room and bedroom 4, atop the laminate flooring that we salvaged and did not demo.
Peter on his hands and knees nailing the shoe molding to the baseboard above the laminate flooring in bedroom 4. Knee pads might help, but Peter refuses — “they make my knees sweat.”
Sticks of primed baseboard cut to length, ready for installation in the master bath.
This is one of the details we sweated with Brett, the architect, Ron Dahlke from Ranserve, and Mike from BMC West, the lumber company. Steven and Jacquela wanted a deep casing around the doors, and a thinner baseboard, to create a “reveal” when the two different dimensions of wood are nailed into position. Here, in the master bath, is the first example of all that planning and selection, made real.
With apologies to
Jan and Dean …
Landers today delivered the hickory flooring — prefinished for bedrooms 1 & 2, family room, library, office, entry hall, upstairs hall, loft, master suite, plus raw, unfinished treads for the stairs.
A very big step toward almost done.
A closeup of the label from the wood maker.
All the wood is stacked in bedroom 1 to acclimate to the house before installation. Landers is planning to begin installation the week after Thanksgiving — that’s the latest update.
One of the raw, unfinished stair treads.
A stack of treads. Each board is an assembly of narrow planks, glued and clamped together. These are “bullnose” treads. We plan to slice off the rounded edge to get to a squared, modern face.
Each tread is distinctly different — knots, colors, heartwood …