Thursday, August 4, 2011

Remodeling woes...

So... we decided to remodel our kitchen. I'm going to now call it the world's most expensive sink - because seriously, this all started when our ancient sink finally rusted out in the bottom and leaked all over the floor and Tempe was darting through the puddles as if she was Debbie Reynolds and Caleb was right behind her swinging like Gene Kelly. 

It was one of those things that was supposed to be straightforward. By straightforward is that everything was supposed to be done within a few days... and that it would all go as smooth as glass, right? Simple as pie. Cabinets out, electrical in, etc... Wrong. Oh, so so wrong.

We had these awesome soffits around our ceiling that we wanted to get rid of. They were holding up some very ugly (as you can all see) cabinets. Like gee we're stuck in the late 70's, and I'm listening to Disco Star Wars in my really cool roller skates and there's a glitterball overhead. I'm going to say for the record that I hate the color Harvest Gold. It's not really a color, it's a state of mind. This state of mind affected everything from our previous linoleum floor to the cabinets to the countertops. I have been staring at these Harvest Gold counters for 15 plus years since I bought this house, and I did get the joy of humming the tune from The Office and hitting it with a sledghammer, which yeah... it was a high point of the remodel so far.

However, the soffits should have keyed me in, right? Simon says, see the hole in our ceiling?

You do see the hole in the ceiling, ta da! This is where our soffit was. This is also where the builders of this house gave us our first clue that they were a bunch of quickly trained monkeys. No, that's not fair to the monkeys. They would have said, "Hey, you know, we should probably nail this support into the beams before we actually put up these soffits." Which the humans didn't do -- in fact the soffits were being held in by NO support work, they simply slapped up two strips of metal and mudded over that. Which I suppose was better than the cabinets... which were supported by two nails driven into drywall of said soffits, and uh, the 30 year old paint they painted the room. Now, I stored all my dishes, cups and glasswear in these cabinets. How we did not die is beyond me. Hooray for fools and homeowners, I suppose.

Simon says: "Inspection is key, ahem. Dogs don't build like this. We dig a hole, we support the walls, thanks!"

As you can see, Simon is  very concerned about inspecting everything. My dog could be a better house inspector than these men. Each step we dig into this "easy" remodel? We find one thing after another. Huge holes ripped in the walls and hidden by cabinets when the electrician previous came in and they mudded over the wall and couldn't find the cords so just punched a ton of holes and ripped it through when they did. Drywall (like sixty pounds of it) stuffed in between my drywall and the outside walls, we had to clean that all out first, and I have a bad feeling it's in every single wall within - that was a lazy, cheap way of getting rid of scraps and not having to pay to dump them or cart them out of here. Our plumbing was incorrect. Our measurements for the electrical we had done - also incorrect and scarily incorrect. It has turned from a three day breakdown and done to a solid week.

Oh, and we are redoing our dog run fence. See, years ago, I had put in a dog run on the left side of our property. Over the years, the gravel has shifted and the run has sagged and it was looking a bit ghetto - safe, but rather ugly and I felt awful.  The person next door bought a house that had been unoccupied for like 5 years and redid it. I was embarrassed, and I wanted to clean it up and make it so gravel didn't go into this man's new yard, etc... now, mind you, the house is empty. It's been on the MLS for 450 days now - and no takers. The yard is ah... rather in bad shape. No curb appeal, nothing. I wouldn't look twice at it, to be honest.

So, I start to redo this fence, the people are on MY property line, and the guy comes over and screams his head off at the employees doing this fence. We're putting in a retaining wall, leveling, and then we're going to put on artificial grass. It will be neat, clean, and no longer have any odor issues, period. He throws a fit over the damage to his grass (mind you, what grass? They haven't watered this lawn all summer and it looks horrible, with big bare spots, etc...) Then he says he lives there, and ... uh, he doesn't. He lied several times to the workers, he threatened them, he screamed at them, and he was flat out rude. Then he parked a car across the driveway so no one could get in or out. Charming little rotter. 

 How do I know?

Because my mother wants to move to our area and she had looked at this home as one to purchase, but it's overpriced and under-done. I told her I couldn't recommend it - and I live next door to it. Then he screams at my poor fence guys and gets in their face and shakes his finger at the fellows... but he won't come over and talk to me about any of this, says he doesn't f-ing care. Sigh. You know, I've lived here 15 years, we don't have any issues, we're quiet, we're clean, our yard is nice, etc, and I was doing this because I felt bad about HIS property line and my dogs and was trying to be a good neighbor. He even has the nice side of the fence and the wall. :(

Oh well. Teaches me to be a concerned neighbor about the dogs and the property line, doesn't it? :(

On a high note? I rode my horse tonight for the first time in a year since I hurt my back so bad. :) And she was awesome and I felt good and she felt good, and I missed riding so much. Hahha, and I haven't lost my leg or my seat, I keep my heels down, yay! ;) It's the little things that make you happy, even when everything else is just a mess, eh?


Taryn said...

Sounds like lots of chaos in your life lately. Once you finish your kitchen, you will love the results and hopefully forget thepain of remodeling. (We did our kitchen last Dec). Your new neighbor sounds like a real douzy (to put it nicely). His attitude to date doesn't bode well for a future peaceful relationship.

Builder Mama said...

So the neighbor is actually trying to flip the house? Hmmm. With that kind of attitude, he'll have a hard time selling it if it's overpriced and underdone. Although this did make me think of a sign I'd seen posted on FB of someone who had neighbor issues and put a For Sale sign in the yard that says, "For Sale - Because My Neighbor is a Huge A$$hole." Hmmm.

As for the remodel, as I've written on your FB page construction can be a nightmare. It never goes as quickly as you want it to. We redid our bathroom a few years ago and what was supposed to take 2 weeks took over 2 months. And we had a good contractor and a relatively new house to work with. Just remember, it's painful now so you can appreciate the new kitchen even more when it's over!

Sharrie said...

I am with you. I have a gold countertop which is beginning to get on my nerves. Understand about shoddy work......we blamed the previous owner because it looks like an amateur job including the door to the outside we found behind our cupboards. Just be glad it is getting fixed!

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