Monday, September 06, 2004

Busy summer

We've been busy this summer. My oldest son Ken is getting married next week. Here in Vegas. At one of those wedding chapels on the strip near downtown. (No, he wouldn't go for Elvis either). - (Driving home today I saw Elvis turning the corner onto Paradise, in a pink 1954 Cadillac. You can see him (or his ghost) lots if you look, all ages and weight ranges) - And we'll be having 80 attendees partying in our backyard after the ceremonies.
So, my wife has her 'honeydew' list that I've been taking my time to get to, which suddenly developed an end date.
One of the things we wanted to do was put in the back patio, which I've been documenting here as the work progressed. I finally finished wiring the fans and lights, and lights around the pool are in too.
Another big thing was to get rid of that 70's sunken living room. It seems that every house we looked at was built in the 70's, and all had a living room that's about five inches lower than the rest of the house. Usually this is the room at the front of the house that had the fancy company furniture and nobody ever used it. Well, ours is next to the dining room, and one of the last owners cut down the railing that divided it up. We pulled down a short wall, and have finally pulled up the carpet and put down Pergo. Here is my son filling up that space.

That's our front door open to the right - it was a solid double doors with picture frame trim when we moved in. We pulled the trim off and filled it to make it flat, then I cut the strip windows into it and installed a ribbed glass. My wife tried to paint it bronze, but didn't like it when it was done, so she changed it to a red red. It really stands out against the pale green and white brick. And the glass stripes really add something to it. Another one of the things we did ourselves because we're cheap and like DUI.
I've got plans to replace that big sheet of glass with French doors (sorry, if you are for Bush then I guess it's Freedom doors.) We can then walk out to the enclosed patio on the front of the house. The front faces east, so we can get the morning sun and sit with coffee and the paper, except I've got a job now and weekends have been too busy.
All of the floors here are poured concrete slabs, very few basements and no houses like SD with a small crawlspace. I guess concrete was cheaper than using wood for floors. Since it was covered with carpet the builders did not have to be precise, and the floor did vary a little bit. But since we wanted wood from one high end over the low spot to the other high end we needed to fill in that space. I could have gotten concrete in to do it, and it would probably been easier.
But since my son is a union carpenter I figured that we'd make him work on it. It took him two days to measure and scribe each of these pieces (I think the lowered area was 13x22) put them down and put down the plywood subfloor. You can see the pale cream carpet in the front of the picture, in the dining area, which we didn't pull up until we were ready for the wood. I then covered it with the underlying foam, and put the Pergo down. My other computer's off, so I'll grab an 'after' shot for the next post - but it looks pretty good.
We're just getting done with our summer monsoon season, not much this year. But there is a lot of humidity in the air, (wow, usually around 12% humidity now, about 3% during the winter) and so clouds. This means the sunsets are pretty nice. Like we had in California.

But to show you that we are still in a desert, and the Nevada Department of Highways does not waste water on unnecessary plantings, this is what most of our freeways look like.

Some trees and shrubs clustered here and there, but mostly gravel.

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