Long day yet not much to show?

I’ll start with the best part of our day – Waste Management came sometime before 930am and took our Bagster and the extra bags that were next to it (thank you, if you read this!) It was like 500 pounds of plaster. I also ordered our flooring! The rest of our day was downhill from there. We left off last night not knowing how the new windows were installed. Paul asked on a DIY forum and their assumption/description was correct – they nailed right into the trim/firring strips so the ones around the windows MUST stay. The window installers also didn’t sprayfoam around the outside of the windows. Yet another project to accomplish next year. Lots of exploration for not much doing is what it felt like.

Since we had to leave the strips we had to take out all the nails from the plaster (by hand with hammers) and some nails that went right into the cinder block from the other strips – oh fun. We used our handy Dremels (we have 2) until they died, switched to an angle grinder and finished the ones near the ceiling with the Dremels after they recharged. The cut off wheel made a lot more sparks – safety first!

Yes, that’s me, Irene!

Next we cut out 2.5″ wide strips from the ceiling to make room for the new walls. This is the one issue with not having an expensive laser, it won’t make the line straight across even 7 feet. Paul figured out how to shoot a laser dot at the ceiling using a measured mark on the floor and the levels on the laser thing. Then double checked the laser beam from the back wall before making marks on the ceiling. We used those marks to snap a chalk line. It didn’t take too much time even without an expensive laser. Our biggest obstacle was how the heck are we going to cut a clean line on the ceiling. The Dremel Trio tool burned out too quickly and it went kind of slowly. We were going to buy another bit but we weren’t sure if it would finish the job (that would cost $36 for 2 bits). While at Lowes Paul got the idea to find a different blade for his circular saw. It was only $15 but holy mother of all things dusty! Ugg! We had to vacate the room after we cut out the ceiling to let the dust settle.

Then after cutting we had to beat the plaster out and pull down the strips of chicken wire I guess they used for corner tape back in those days. This made even more dust.

Spent lots of time cleaning before we could even get to the insulation. Paul (even right now) is fitting in our foamboard pieces. It won’t all be installed much to our dismay. I broke the nipple off of the spray foam can so we went back to Lowe’s tonight to get a new can of the same brand to finish that can/continue on to finish the insulating. Damn thing broke on the way home! I am not stepping into a home improvement store more than 2x a day, NOOO WAY! We’ll go tomorrow *grumpy*. Since we have to leave the firring strips around the windows we are just fitting the pieces of insulation between them. The insulation basically sits flush with them.

Cutting the foam board insulation was easy once Paul figured out that it was just like cutting drywall. Make your measurements on the blue side in pencil. Then use a drywall tee as a guide and cut the blue side with a razorblade. Bend the smaller side down and it will snap where you made your cut. Then flip it over and holding the two pieces at 90 degrees to each other cut the foil on the other side. Voila.

Did I mention what a fun time we had looking for ‘tuck tape’? When you try to explain to anyone in our local improvement stores what you need, they point us towards Duck Tape. We told them it’s the tape you use when you install a vapor barrier, it’s made of polyurethane – one guy even said we could use packing tape *silence*. I did a lot of Google searching to see if it was known as something else and what brands we could locate (not really known as something else but handy knowing what brands we could search for). Home Depot carries Tyvek and we easily found it on our own in the insulation section right with the vapor barrier. Lowe’s we couldn’t find anything near the insulation/vapor barrier. I used our Tyvek tape tonight on our foam and doing the corners was so challenging. I figured out a nice system (fold it in half, attach to one board and then smooth on the other, carefully) I have to go over my work tomorrow and possibly retape over some of it. I wish I stopped to see if there were some helpful hints on this but I just wanted to feel like we got something really done.

It’s now 11:30pm and we’ll be headed to Ikea tomorrow morning. We uploaded the final plan from Ikea’s program to the Ikea website and printed out our own spreadsheet with the list of part numbers. I hope that it’s a fun time.

As an aside, we had Irish oatmeal for breakfast; marinated pork chops on the grill with a pinto bean/avocado/tomato salad (Paul thought it was a “man’s lunch”); and for dinner fish sticks, sweet potato fries, and the rest of the lunch salad. Thank goodness for our grill and great weather! I wonder how often we’ll eat at Ikea over the next few weeks? Truthfully, I’ve never had their meatballs. LOL.

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