An Early, Long and Chilly Day at the house

The second big doors were getting installed today and they were using a crane to do it, which I thought Hudson would love to see, so we got up early at 5:30a and packed everyone into the car and took the 7:55a ferry. Hudson woke up asking to see the crane lift the doors (“I want to see the big crane lift the doors”), so my talk about it last night worked.


We stopped at Top Pot for doughnuts on the way for everyone at the house, including 2 pink ones with sprinkles (the Homer Simpson doughnut) for Havana and Hudson, of course. We got to the house at 8:30 and the north opening in the wall was already taken down. They told me it wasn’t as exciting as I imagined it’d be (they were right — I watched it on the security camera DVR). Havana and Hudson pretended to drive the crane truck while they prepared the opening for the door jamb. Mark gave me my very own (with my name on it) Shuchart/Dow hardhat too.

The crane moved very slowly so it wasn’t as exciting for Hudson after the first 10 minutes so he and Havana ran around the yard most of the time instead. By 10:30 the door jamb was in place and they started putting the doors on. That took an hour or so and they spent the rest of the day fastening the jamb in place, installing the lock hardware and boarding it up.

The doors look amazing, they did a nice job building them, which is a relief because it took us a while to pick the right builder from three possibilities. Schuchart/Dow helped us figure out what the differences between the builders would be so we knew what was worth paying for and what we didn’t care about, but you never know how they’ll turn out until you actually see them. They feel great to open and they don’t yet have the glass (“glazing” in industry-speak) in them, which will add quite a bit more weight to them, and should make them even smoother. I don’t think the kids will be opening them anytime soon.

They took up all the protective paper on the floors so the tile guys could grout the kitchen tile tomorrow, a Saturday, so we got to see the entire kitchen + family room floors together for the first time and can envision how it will look when it’s all done. The new doors let in a lot of light and make the floors look even better.

The tile in the master bathroom is mostly done, they were just finishing up the shower. We decided to use the same-sized tiles (2′ x 1′) in the shower as the rest of the bathroom as opposed to smaller 4″x4″ versions because it will look better. The concern, though, is that the bigger tiles have fewer grout lines which, apparently, prevent the floor from being as slippery. The tiles are honed so they’re already less slippery, but when wet, you never know. I tested how slippery a small 4″x4″ sample piece is that we had at home and the tile in our current shower tile is more slippery. We grabbed a big tile to bring home to test it for sure. But worst case, we can put a no-slip treatment on it if it’s too slippery.

The painting has started with priming the kids’ bedrooms and bathrooms and the master bath vanity cabinetry has arrived and should go in next week. The wood we selected at Rhine had arrived this week and the cabinet-makers have already picked up their part of it to build the basement cabinetry. 12th Ave Iron was there installing the butler’s pantry steel shelving. It looks great, but they couldn’t install it because they templated the space after the drywall was installed but before the mud was applied and the door trim was installed (Mark took responsibility, 12th Ave didn’t know), so it was off by 1/8″ or so, which seems small to us, but they have to shave off the shelves a little to get them to fit. They’ve built new drawers for an existing closet in the dormer of our master bedroom and those are ready to be painted — the originals had no sliding hardware on them and didn’t quite fit anymore. The new electrical for the chandeliers was completed this week too.

We talked with Mark about the landscaping plan and some concerns we have about it and then we left and went out to dinner at Elliot Bay. Hudson didn’t have a nap, but he was fine until we got in line for the ferry, when he started whining, which bothered Eva and made her cry, which Hudson thought was funny, so he kept making loud noises to scare her and kept her crying the whole way home. Kids are so delightful. By the time we got home and put them all to bed, Gay and I sat in a dark kitchen, shared an Imperial Stout, and enjoyed the silence.

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