Saturday, August 31, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #31: Finale

We eased into our Saturday with a visit to the veterinarian. Leo was overdue for his yearly shots, and Wilson has a little boo-boo on his chest. Both boys passed their exams with flying colors though the trip to town carried its usual stress (would you want to ride 7 miles in a cage in the back of a Mini Cooper? Me neither.) Anyway, after lunch, we got busy. 

Scott started his afternoon by giving the master shower floor one more good scrubbing with grout cleaner. He was able to get a little more misplaced grout off the textured tile, and now it is looking pretty good.
 Scubb-A-Dub-Dub...Scott's in the Tub. (But it's not really a tub...just the shower floor.)
While Scott worked upstairs, I started arranging our old office cubbies for use in the 1972 hall closet. Of course, I had company. It's hard to accomplish any task without having a cat do some investigating. With the reuse of these cubbies, we'll store excess office supplies, photo albums, and whatever else needs a home. It's also been nice clearing things out of the basement!
While the shower floor dried, Scott nailed the baseboards to the walls in the little guest room. This is a task two months in the making which, of course, took less than a hour to accomplish. Now we can move the daybed into this room and get it ready for one normal-sized or two small visitors.
After dinner and half of the Husker game, it was finally time to add the first coat of sealer to the shower wall and floor grout! Thank you, Scotty, for doing a great job!

This is the final post of my 31-day challenge! 
I'm proud that I posted every day but I admit it was a struggle to come up with things with this much regularity. I hope you enjoyed the silliness and will stick around while I return to my usual schedule of posting once or twice a week. 

Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Friday, August 30, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #30: Almost Done . . .

It's the next-to-last post of my 31-day challenge! The month has passed rather quickly except for these last few days, spent in the grips of a heatwave. I'm glad the month will be ending on a Saturday. The day is wide open, and I'm hoping to have something interesting to write about for final Post #31.

Scott had every intention of adding the first coat of sealant to the master bathroom shower grout this evening but his plans went awry. Upon closer inspection, he found five little areas that needed more grout so that foiled any plans. I guess I've waited two months . . . I can wait another three days.

So - what to blog about tonight? I really don't know - so here's a photo of Jon Hamm as Don Draper of AMC's Mad Men. You can thank me later.

Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #29: When All Else Fails, TBT

It's a good thing that Scott chose a Thursday to be lazy. It gives me a chance to add another "Throwback Thursday" (aka "TBT") post to the blog. The photo below is from the first time we went on a date to a party thrown by Scott's fraternity. I've been feeling nostalgic this week since we visited campus last Friday to wish incoming freshman / nephew Joe "good luck."
Aren't we adorable? 
This is probably the only time I'll post a photo of myself without doing any magical photographic touch-up.

Scott promises that he will work extra hard Friday night so that I have something noTTafarm-related to post. 
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #28: Tiny Grout

We've moved one step closer to using the master bathroom shower! Since he is pretty satisfied with the grout cleaning effort, Scott went ahead and added grout that was missing in some very tiny areas within the shower stall.
Rather than use a standard-size float, Scott cut a little piece of spongy floor tile and use it to smush the grout into the small holes.
He's very precise.
Thursday night, he should be able to seal the grout, and then, could it really happen??, we may be able to use the shower at long last. Scott tells me that we will wait one day between each of the two coats of sealant.

In other news . . . 
Our "laundry butlers" arrived today! Who would think that having rolling laundry baskets would be such a neat thing?
Now we don't have to carry heavy laundry the 10 or 12 feet from the laundry closet all the way back to our master closet...we can roll it there in style. I am hoping to take a kitty cat for a ride sometime soon, too.
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #27: Backsplash

The beautiful new kitchen is lacking just a few things: the shelves for my dishes and the backsplash. A step toward checking the backsplash off the "to do" list was taken tonight. Scott dusted off his CAD drawing, to verify measurements. We now have a set of plans ready to go to the sheet metal contractor to have the quilted stainless steel backsplash panels created.
We're copying another favorite design element from our Grant Street house. 
Wasn't our kitchen pretty? 
Scott already had the backsplash drawn as a part of the CAD drawings for the new addition. 
He printed the drawings to verify the dimensions. All of the holes for outlets, notches for cabinets, etc. will be created by the sheet metal contractor.
Once finalized, Scott will send the drawings to the contractor, who will then begin the process by creating the quilted pattern on sheets of stainless steel. They will upload the CAD file which will tell their high-definition plasma cutter exactly how and where to make cuts. 
More details will be shared on the blog as the process continues. Having the stainless steel in place will really make the kitchen sparkle!
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Monday, August 26, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #26: Insect

Scott noticed a visitor perched on our bedroom's deck door screen. This was the largest praying mantis that he had seen so he was excited to share these photos.

Scott estimates that this bug is 3.5" long. That seems too tame to me so I'm changing his story slightly.
"Oh My! This crazy bug was over 11 inches long with a wingspan of 7 inches! It was all we could do to usher the cats into our safe room to protect them from this ferocious creature!"

According to Wikipedia, we narrowly escaped being chomped on by this "ambush predator."
Isn't magnification wonderful?

Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Sunday, August 25, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #25: Heatwave

Summer refuses to release its scorching grip on Omaha, treating us to a run of 95+-degree days. I think I can make it through the next week with the glimmer of fall that Labor Day ushers in. We avoided the heat on Sunday by taking it pretty easy. Scott did some more grout clean-up in the master shower while I tried to sift through more stuff in the basement. We have several boxes that are full of "abandoned" items; we moved them here from Grant Street nearly two years ago, and have been existing quite nicely without utilizing any of the items within. Rather than entertain you with photos of the out-dated office supplies, I'm posting photos of the shower grout work.

Scott has put about seven hours cleaning the grout off the shower floor tile. It's textured, so when I grouted it back in June, the little hills and valleys on each tile captured grout and held on tight. Since the grout is lighter in color than the chocolatey tiles, it's pretty obvious that an amateur did the work. He's made great progress and will soon be satisfied enough to seal the tile and declare the shower usable.
Cleaning the grout lines of the shower walls has revealed a few spots that will need grout added. We hope to work on these final details a little each night after work. Heaven knows it gonna be too hot to do anything outdoors!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #24: A Post is A Post

Saturday, I made a quick solo trip to Kearney. Our niece Chelsie moved in to a new house so I thought I'd be useful. Actually, I just needed an excuse to see my mom & dad. It was a fast and fun trip! While I was away, Scott worked for several hours cleaning up the grout in the master bathroom. He didn't let the heat and humidity keep him from mowing - but the wind finally made him quit after about an hour. 

So here it is, nearly midnight, and I don't have any photos of today's action to share. Here's yet another sunset photo; this one was taken August 25, 2010. 
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Friday, August 23, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #23: Closet

The solution for the master closet has been long-debated. I don't like the commonly-used white wire shelves, and don't relish the idea of paying big bucks for particle board modules that need assembly. We've made due by using a rickety rolling rack for some of my stuff and using the rest of the closet as a roomy ironing space. Happily, we found a workable solution at Lowe's for only $149 that will work for Scott's side of the closet. Check it out . . .
This chrome wire system is similar to shelves we have in the basement so putting them together was pretty easy.
Here's a rare shot of a man reading the manufacturer's assembly instructions.
Ta Da! 
The system is about 5 feet wide and has two shelving units from which two rods are suspended.
I am considering purchasing another unit for my side of the closet but, of course, every Lowe's in Omaha is now out of stock. So for now, Scotty's happy so I'm happy!
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Thursday, August 22, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #22: #TBT

Don't be confused. "#TBT" is what the kids out there use to tag old photos to indicate that it is "Throw Back Thursday!" My nieces use it on their blogs, and I see it almost every Thursday on Facebook and Instagram. I figured it was time to be a hip, happenin' noTTafarmer and post my own "TBT" photos.

This week, I've selected photos in honor of our niece, Karli, and our nephew, Joe who will both be celebrating university "Move In Day" on Friday, August 23rd.

Karli will be a freshman at the University of South Dakota in Vermillion! 
Her mommy and daddy (Teresa and my brother Tim) are very excited for her to follow in their Coyote footsteps (or paw prints?) She will be majoring in accounting and chasing boys (not really, I added that for spice.)

Joe will be a freshman at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln! 
He has pledged Acacia Fraternity which makes Uncle Scott (an Acacian himself) very proud. Joe's parents (Alan and my sister Karolyn) are happy to send their youngest off to school and have an empty nest, at last. Joe has enrolled in the PGA Golf Management program.
Congratulations and Good Luck to Karli and Joe!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #21: Another Beautiful Sunset

There may have been more than a few reasons to be grumpy today: the heat returned, giving us a high of 97; the Mini's service bill was outrageous, as usual; and perhaps most egregious, I forgot my cell at home this morning so couldn't get on Facebook all day. But all that melts away the minute you get home to noTTafarm! We're so lucky to live at such a wonderful spot on the map.
The sunset was especially orange this evening. Scott pondered whether its deep color was a result of dust and smoke filtering across from forest fires out west.
Here's another reason to be happy. . . I got a shaggy new haircut Tuesday!  
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #20: Harvest Part II

Today was hot and sunny, so David returned to noTTafarm to bale the grass cut just last night. He was helped out by his nephew, Jonathon, and made quick work of the task. When I walked out to take a look, I met not only the new owner of the hay bales but also her new puppy.
"Peaches" is an 8-month old mutt that may be part Labrador but also has some pit bull features. 
Her coat is striped like a tiger, and she's just as sweet as can be. Peaches' mom (I forgot her name by the time I walked back to the house (how embarrassing)) has seven horses that will enjoy the tasty hay for a few months.
The hay was made into standard-sized bales this year at the buyer's request.
 Jonathon ran the baler around . . .  
 . . . and David picked them up and stacked them neatly on the trailer.
Silly Peaches! Dogs don't eat hay!
And just like that, the Great noTTafarm Harvest of 2013 was complete.
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Monday, August 19, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #19: Harvest

The noise of a diesel rumbling to the east could only mean one thing: David was here to cut the grass! He's been cutting the tall grass on the front third of the property every August for years. Scott and I walked up (down?) the driveway to watch the action.
The tall grass has had a great season; cool temps and good rainfall. Some horse* out there is going to have a tasty treat! (*or maybe a cow? I really don't know where the hay ends up. . . maybe I should ask.)
 He mowed the entire area in about 10 minutes.
The grass will need to dry out for a few days, then David will be back with the baler to finish the job. Do you see a post about hay bales in the future?
 Glamour Shot of the John Deere's smokestacks
The noTTafarmer and The Actual Farmer caught up on all the neighborhood harvest activities. I'm going shopping for some bibs so Scott can look the part.
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #18: Nothing to Report

If no home improvement projects get worked on but you still blog about it, did anything really happen? Well, a lot happened at noTTafarm today - just not house-related! We got an early start, read the paper, ate breakfast . . .then Scott went on a bike ride and I went to church. Scott spent time at his Mom and Dad's, mowing their yard. I went to the grocery store, tidied the house, and cooked dinner. We invited Mom and Dad Camp over to celebrate the Carl's recent birthday. We had pork chops and corn on the cob, and I made a flourless chocolate cake that turned out pretty good (thanks to Martha Stewart.) It was so nice to see Dad on the mend from his surgery, and to have a chance to visit! So - not much happened but really - a lot happened!
Have A Great Week!
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!
Wishing Mark and LuAnn a Happy 29th Wedding Anniversary!

Saturday, August 17, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #17: Saturday Switch

Another beautiful day at noTTafarm! With rumors that summer's heat will return later this week, it only seemed right that Scott got to spend the majority of his day outside. But first, he had two tasks to complete: 1.) put rubber feet under the dryer to absorb vibration and sound, and 2.) replace the faulty fan switch in the master bathroom. I didn't take any photos of the rubber feet process but suffice to say it was a total pain! Since the washer and dryer are stacked, they are super heavy. There's nothing to grip either so you just make the best of pushing on the corners. It took about 45 minutes to get those little rubber pads in place but, hopefully, we'll never have to do it again. And, they actually work!
These are the rubber feet that we bought at Lowe's to put under the washer. Maybe if I publish this photo, they'll send me a lucrative endorsement deal.

After lunch, Scott set about replacing the fan switch. Way back when, the electrician told us that the switch "blew" when he installed it. We finally ordered a replacement which arrived this week. Scott had been nervous because if the new switch wouldn't work, then the whole fan was probably bad - not an inexpensive fix.
I promised Scott that as soon as he got the fan working, he could go outside and chop down trees. Wouldn't you just know . . . the new switch went in without a hitch, taking a grand total of about 15 minutes. The fan works great! The only bad part was that this is the bulk of the interior work that got done. The good news is that Scott got lots of fresh air, chopped down about 12 dead trees (3-5 inch diameter trunks), burned some brush, and had a nice day.

To further spoil my husband, we had cheddar brats for dinner, and I let him convince me that we should cook them over the fire. Delicious!
 One of these days, we'll have to scoop all the ash out of the fire pit. 
Bibbers enjoyed the sunset while we roasted our brats. Such a good kitty!
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Friday, August 16, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #16: Coffee

We may not be able to shower in the master bathroom yet but we do have our coffee bar set up! Mom and Dad Camp gave us a Keurig coffee brewer and fancy mugs for Christmas which were destined for a home on the master vanity. What a convenience to have a quick cup of java while we're getting ready for work! I may need two cups in the morning in order to get something done worth blogging about tomorrow night.
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Wishing a Happy Birthday to Dad Camp!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #15: Grout Revisited

In our end-of-June haste to finish the house enough to satisfy the bank, I alone was tasked with grouting the master bathroom. That's a pretty big job to give a girl that's only grouted one previous time. But I pushed through, we got our mortgage, and everything was rosy. That is until we actually looked at the results of my grouting efforts. While most of it was good, some of it was decidedly not good. So we ignored it for a month and used other bathrooms until Scott decided to do start the touch-up.
 This tile shows a good example of an uneven grout line; note its bumpy appearance.
 Luckily, there's a tool that fixes uneven grout lines! This little saw has a diamond-studded blade.
 The blade rakes over the rough parts, and sands the bad grout away.
 Of course, Leo had to investigate.
"Ta Da!"
A much neater appearance in just a few minutes! With a little more effort, the bathroom will soon be in good shape. 
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

31-Day Challenge Post #14: Save The Date!

Mark Your Calendars!
You Don't Want to Miss the 3rd Annual noTTafarm
September 21 & 22
Since we've been working so hard on everything house-related for the past 14 months, we're hoping to make this year's Lumberjack Days more of a party! Of course, if your idea of having fun is cutting down a tree, burning a stump, or splitting firewood, don't dismay. There will be plenty of every-kind-of fun! More details will be coming out soon, so stay tuned to this blog for all the info.
Stay Tuned for Our Next Adventure!