Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Under the Gun

Well we only have one more week (now only four more days) before Samantha's First Birthday Party.  We are making significant progress on the basement (and we're both exhausted because of it!). 

We finished installing the remaining drywall, finished the columns, put on a ton of drywall compound, and worked a lot on the stairs.  Here is the big picture - it's a lot brighter now!

Chris has been doing the majority of the drywall compound but I have done some of the smaller things.  I used my new spray gun to paint the doors and all the trim for the room.  I had to paint the vents on the fireplace in place because they were completely stuck (they were absolutely disgusting). 

I also spent some time sanding the stair treads and toe kicks.  The stairs are 52 years old and it definitely shows.  When we bought the house there was incredibly nasty carpet on these stairs and it was one of the first things removed. 

The stairs had other issues besides looking gross.  When the stairs were built, the person that cut the stringers didn't know what they were doing.  They are not a consistent depth and they are all sloped.  Since we're under some pressure to finish, we didn't have time to do this correctly (cut new stringers, install new treads, etc.).  So we did the next best thing - we fixed the obvious problems the best we could. 

Chris had some re-framing to do under the stairs (they were held up by 2x3s).  The old handrail was just 2x4s and there were some areas cut out of the treads.  He moved some of those so that the cutouts weren't visible. 

The most hazardous part of the steps was the third from the bottom.  This step tread is an inch deeper than the rest and it is sloped far forward.  It's so bad that you actually notice that you fall forward when you walk down them.  It was fixed with a few shims so at least you don't stumble anymore.

The next few days are critical.  Here's the list of things we still need to do:

1.  Finish drywall compound (touch up, sand)
2.  Mask lights, etc.
3.  Prime ceiling, walls, and stairs
4.  Paint ceiling
5.  Paint walls
6.  Paint stairs
7.  Install doors (4 of them)
8.  Install trim and molding
9.  Carpet installation (on Thursday)
10.  Install handrail and balusters on stairs
11.  Install light trim, cover plates, etc.
12.  CLEAN!!!

I still can't believe how far we've come in only one month - nothing like a little girl turning one to motivate you!

Samantha has been having some fun lately.  Just this week we went to lunch at the mall, a play date, an inflatable bounce place, the Baltimore Aquarium, Friends and Farms Open House, story time at the library, and her friend Charlotte's birthday party.  Whew!  What an exhausting week!

Out of all that I think she liked the aquarium the best - she got right up next to the fish and stared and clapped.  She wasn't a big fan of the inflatable bounce place - she wasn't too thrilled with it yet. 

I don't have any pictures from the aquarium but here are a few random shots from this week.

She has started feeding herself the bottle instead of the baby doll at bath time.

Her hair is getting long enough to have some fun!

And eating is still a big deal in our house!

Next week we will have a finished room in the basement, a one year old daughter, and an awesome party!

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