Sunday, October 25, 2009

First Garage Sale!

Jill's Journal: Last week we had our first official garage sale. Naturally, it was the coldest day of the season…we went from a delightfully sunny autumn to arctic conditions overnight, but it was a resounding success nonetheless. We bundled up against the cold and, with the wonderful help of Kristi and Adam, parted with hundreds of small items and a few bigger ones. It took hours to put everything out – I had been cleaning out closets and drawers and old boxes for a few weeks and the pile in the garage was daunting. And absolutely nothing was valuable! But we had great fun, made $487 from a bunch of junk we hadn’t used in ages anyway (and won’t miss), and it felt FANTASTIC to get some things out of the house.

One might think our house might be feeling a bit sparse, but that’s not the case at all. The drawers and cupboards and closets are all a bit lighter, but nothing big is gone yet. We're still planning to live here for approximately six more months, so I can’t do anything too drastic yet!

At the end of the garage sale, I threw most of the smaller stuff still left into big garbage bags and both Kristi and I made a trip to Goodwill. And some of the big stuff that really wasn't sellable afterward -- like old lights, an old dining room table that Rob used for poker at the office, a beat-up Christmas tree stand, etc. -- we put at the end of our driveway with a "Free" sign on it. It was all gone in no time! It amazes me what people are willing to take.

I also found a home this week for more than 1,000 issues of The Blood-Horse magazine that I had been saving for a future home library. That was hard for me to do -- I'd written in a few hundred of them, but I couldn't keep them. They took up 17 big, heavy boxes and had to go. That was bittersweet.

I still have a lot of work to do. This was just a dent, but a good dent. :-) We’re definitely moving in the right direction.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Project #1 is a success - on to project 2

Well, The first project (make room for a stackable washer/dryer is completed. We'll still need to vent it once I get the product, but at least the closet is done. I'm actually pretty happy with how everything turned out, and I think, for having to reuse pieces and canabalize the scrap, it turned out quite well.

The only thing that happened which I failed to realize is that the cabinet door will now need to be open to use the remote with the DVD player. While that's inconvenient, it isn't the end of the world, and if this setup works out ok I may just cut a hole in the cabinet door to make it work. OOF - I also forgot about the satellite receiver... hmm. More mods to be made :)

So - on to planning the next - Bed Rails. I found an example of what I want to base what we're doing (left). This is out of a Class A (a really expensive one - notice the granite end table for the lower bed...). I am hoping we can do something similar, but I'm not entirely sure how the ladder will work. Sound I use heavy closet rod (found one at Lowe's) or should I order something higher end? I think I'll use red oak stained to match as close as possible - its really all I can do. I sketched out the idea, and I think it'll be a pretty straightforward design.

I was planning on doing the desk next, but I realized that I can vacation without the desk - I can't put the girls in bed without the rails.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

On the path....

I finally got some construction done, so the back of the cabinet is now in place. There is still a lot of finish work to do (top shelf, back board, wiring re-run, trim in), but progress is progress. My goal tonight was to get the shelves even, put the back of the cabinet on with screws and plan out the rest of the steps to finish that overwhelming cabinet...

Check, Check, and checkish... ;) And yes, that's all screwed in and flush...


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The first cut is the deepest...

So, in the spirit of posting constantly - here I am. You might think the title is strange, but I assure you, it isn't. I'm referring to the first MOD (modification) to the RV. It was tough at first, but it has picked up steam and its going to be great.

Project #1 started simply as a couple of guys wondering what the first project was, then... how can we take that apart, then... get me the prybar just to see how that's built, then - poof - project. :) Soon there was panelling all around and nails on the floor and exposed wiring... Woohoo!

I knew we needed a stackable washer / dryer in the RV, and while they'd prepped it well for a single, I knew we could modify it to handle the stackable in the closet they set aside. I understand Glendale's thought behind what they are doing, but I wish they offered this setup straight from the factory. The modifications are pretty straightforward, and would have been easier to do at the factory level (in fact it would have been easier to build than what they put in there...) Hopefully what I have to do will work out right :)

So the first day Adam and I tore apart the back of the TV cabinet, seeing how things were put in, and how they could be altered. turns out that for the most part it looked like a pretty easy task - shorten the shelves, move the back of the cabinet forward, reposition a couple of electronics and poof - Stackable W/D with vents...

Tonight I went down to take the next couple of steps. First we had to remove the shelf from the closet. That turned out to be a pretty simple task. Everything is built pretty simply. Framed out of 1x1 pine, luan stapled to both sides and edged with either moulding or trim tape. The major intersections where strength is needed is done with some 2 to 3 inch screws. I wanted to do this right, so I'm taking my time in deconstruction. The thing to me is to try to keep the front of the cabinet untouched. Adam would like to rip into it and make some replacements, which I agree would be easier, but I want to see if I can keep everything together and 'redo' as little as possible.

Second step was to cut the shelves. This turned out to be quite difficult even with the new dremel toy that I bought. I really though it would be easy, but with the angles and space that I had to work in, it just got a little mangled. Well, I guess that's what they make trim pieces for. I'll be trim tacking away when I finally finish!

Third step was to cut away the back where I need to put the shelf for the electronics. That did happen pretty nicely and once cut, the board now hangs freely and allows movement into position. All told I'm thinking we probably moved that back up by about 8 inches.

The last thing I did last night was to dry fit it and take some pictures. I think its going to line up pretty nicely and unless you knew what it looked like before, it'll be tough to tell that I've made any modifications.

So far: Casualty count - people: 1 (Adam stepped on a pin nail in bare feet and proceeded to bleed on my linoleum - how dare he :) ) Casualty count - tools: 1(Adam stripped a square bit) Is it just me or is there a theme here? ;)

Tomorrow: Off to lowes to pick up some items and then hopefully make some progress in the 'construction' phase of things. I have other things to do down there tonight, but I'm hopeful that I'll have at least a little time to get something done.


...It's been awhile.... since I ...

... blogged about anything at all. The reason is pretty simple, I got distracted, busy, bored, and discouraged. I'm going to try to keep up since things will start moving along quite quickly now. I'm also going to try to take my notes and go back in case any should actually want to know how all this worked through.

I've missed some of the most major parts of the pre-experience - researching, choosing, buying, and picking up. All of that was so significant that I'm sad I burned out in the middle. Too much to do, and then too easy not to do it. I'm going to vow to write a little everyday, just to get into the habit - because this blog is productive, and it is progress.