Wardrobes

After all I said I was going to get from my mum’s, we’ve decided not to have the wardrobes in the end.  I think it’s overfacing Barry, who seems to have reached his limit on DIY for the year and is staging some kind of protest.

We really need to get cracking again – at least to finish off the last bits of the kitchen and living room, but going on holiday and eating out (almost) every night isn’t really conducive to pockets full of money to spend on picture frames.

Of our kitchen jobs still to do, we have the following left…

1. Sand and repaint the ceiling

2. Cut skirting boards to size and repaint

3. Fit skirting boards

4. Finish painting the kitchen walls

5. Finish sanding and fit the peninsula

6. Tile the kitchen walls

7. Paint the stairs wall, handrail and ceiling

8. Replace all of the switches with brushed silver ones

9. Get a condenser tumble dryer

The living room list’s not much better…

1. Sand and repaint wall and paint skirting boards

2. Paint the skirting boards and cut and fit the beading

3. Paint the kitchen/living room door (both sides) and the doorframe on the other side

4. Paint a radiator

5. And another one

6. Fit the strip thing between the kitchen and living room

7. Create the photo wall – finalise photos and buy frames and prints

8. Buy white drawers and baskets for the units

 

I need a lie down.

Check! Check!

Although we didn’t do much this weekend, I did cross off a few tasks from the Depressing visual representation of all the jobs left to do: the living room, namely task 1, half of task 2 and task 3.

1. Sand and repaint wall and paint skirting boards
Barry was making a stand about not doing any DIY last weekend, so I did all this with my own fair hands. In the beginning, he wasn’t even willing to instruct me on how to do it, but he gave in in the end and gave me a bit of idea!

I had to cut away the cracked parts of the wall before I could sand. Very nervous with Stanley knives as in very clumsy! Then I had to caulk the wall (cue lots of jokes about loving caulk). I ended up caulking half the wall that was left to paint as it was so cracked from the flooring being put in.

2. Paint these skirting boards and cut and fit the beading
I painted all of the remaining skirts, but the beading still needs to be done.








3. Paint this door (both sides) and the doorframe on the other side

I did all of this, which took a few hours. I may have mentioned that we are going on a fancy dress pub crawl this weekend. On Sunday, I watched Supergirl (to get into character), and we watched the first three Indiana Jones films. I say watched, I was just listening because you can’t see the TV from the door/floor behind the sofa.

We were also prepared to have a good crack at tasks 7 and 8 (getting white frames, drawers and baskets), but who knew Ikea was closed on Easter Sunday?

Probably won’t get anything done this coming weekend – it’s Barry’s birthday and we have people staying over again, so may not have much to report.

Old fashioned couple

I was cooking tea the other night while Barry was plastering the very same room, when I realised that we were fulfilling stereotypical gender roles without even thinking about it.  When I pointed this out to Barry, he asked me to get him a beer from the fridge.  I did.

Is DIY divided into boy jobs and girl jobs?  I’ve been doing some jobs like painting, following Barry around after he’s done the manly rollering with the little brush to do the edges.  When he ripped the walls down, I was tasked with sanding the bits of skirting board that came off.  I made curtains for the spare room, but I’ve never been in our loft.

I’m fine with being the ideas person and wandering around with tester pots and a camera.  I’m not saying I want to do the heavy work, I’m just wondering whether it’s implied that I shouldn’t.  Is it just us?

Kitchen update: preparing a special three-course Valentine’s meal was fun with everything in boxes in the living room. We’re going to have a few days of having to get water from the bathroom, but Barry thinks he should have the shiny new oven up and running shortly, and the washing machine and dishwasher have just been moved into their new homes.  Photos of the practically empty kitchen below; we haven’t unpacked any of the new one yet.

Breaking the fourth wall

The kitchen wall is no more!  All hail the supersize kitchen!

I annoyed Barry by taking lots of photos as he worked.  In my defence, I did order the Chinese food – I couldn’t exactly get to the kitchen.  It’s difficult to get a photo of the entire kitchen, so I’ve had to take the last two from either side.  It’s that big.

We sat and thought about the list last night; I think we didn’t want to do it because it’s really long and we knew it would be.  To start with, we were going to put the delivery of the kitchen units back because they’re supposed to be coming in less than two weeks’ time.  We’ve changed our minds now, because we’ll only want them, so here goes…

  1. Finish painting in the living room.  We’re going to leave the dining table down for now, and this will allow us to store things in that space.  Namely, kitchen cupboards.
  2. Get the kitchen pipework done.
  3. Electrics – get them where we want them.  Barry will be linking two lights together and getting rid of a switch.
  4. Start patching up the kitchen.  This will involve fitting plasterboard into the holes in the walls and ceilings, and generally making it ready for skimming.
  5. Take the current kitchen out.  Scary step, there’s no coming back from this!
  6. Skim the plaster.  A friend is being called in for this one!
  7. Paint ceiling.
  8. Paint walls.
  9. Put cupboards together (maybe while the other is drying?).
  10. Put in kitchen.
  11. Put in kitchen flooring.
  12. Put in living room flooring.

There are a million and one other things to add, like putting additional radiators in, sorting the photos for the living room wall, getting some more units sorted for the living room, getting the worktops cut, shall we have an island in the kitchen, etc., and I’m sure more will come to me as I’m just about to drop off to sleep.  But it’s a start.

Lists, charts and automobiles

We have quite a hefty list of things to do, both in the living room and kitchen, and although it’s scary, we do need to get it down. Then it needs to be put into some semblance of order, and Barry is even contemplating the implementation of a Gantt chart.

While this may sound like an excuse to do anything but the job at hand, there is actually reasoning behind this. For those of you who don’t know, the idea of a Gantt chart is for you to plan what you need to do, when, and by whom, and plot it on a chart. It’s all about following the critical path, and for this, you need to know which jobs depend on other jobs being done. This is the longest the entire project should take, in an ideal world. As a simple example, we clearly can’t put the kitchen in until the plastering has been done, and we can’t plaster the walls until the ones we’re removing have been taken down. You get the idea.

It’s just a little tool to set us on track and give us a plan for each DIY day. Ours would be based on weekends only, but if Barry decided to take time off work, or we decided to spend a few evenings working on it, the schedule could be altered. Perhaps one undertaking may take longer than we thought. It also also allows you to see what jobs can be done that don’t depend on other tasks. For example, although I can’t take down a wall or move electrics, I can do paint touch-ups, clean or sand walls, fill holes with plaster, etc. I’m also not too shabby wielding a screwdriver. Drills are beyond me though!

On another note, we’ve been looking at some fabulous vertical radiators for beside the dryer in the kitchen/bottom of the stairs, shown here, but can’t decide on a colour at the moment.  Wickes have a nice range, but we may end up on eBay.  It’s a good use of the space, because we’re actually losing the only three radiators in that part of the house by losing the walls.  We’re also considering heated flooring (although slippers are cheaper!).  As we’ll be able to fit a table and chairs in the kitchen when we’re done, we will hopefully be spending more time in there, so it would be worthwhile.

Barry’s now blocked off the toilet and sink, although we had several comments from friends and family about the open plan loo (pictured right).

He’s sealed the drains with a nylon expanding plug, silicone, and expanding foam.  He did notice a full length of copper pipe down the drain, so God only knows what else is down there; no wonder we had problems!

Pictured below are the spots where they were, RIP little toilet and sink.  Show some respect; a moment’s silence please.