Thursday, July 28, 2011

Almost Finished!

We finished installing the new flooring in the hallway, master bedroom and bathroom. It was a little harder to install than I expected. Really difficult to click and lock edges in tight spaces like under the vanity, in the closets and against the far wall. It probably didn't help that I have inflammatory arthritis in my hands. A friend loaned us the tools he uses to install Pergo and they really helped. We are really happy with how the floor looks. 

Jim cut all the new baseboard today and tomorrow we will get it nailed in place. A little paint touch up and the floor will be finished!

Our glass shower enclosure will be installed tomorrow morning. Can't wait to see how it looks. Jim will then flush all the water pipes in the shower and install the three shower heads.

We are almost finished. Still have two window sills to do; the bathroom chandelier to hang; and the bedroom window cornices need to be upholstered. I ordered all new bedding and then couldn't find fabric for the cornices. Today I discovered the bedding manufacturer sells matching fabric shower curtains so I ordered one (72" X 72") for the valances. Only cost $15, if I had found fabric it would have been around $100 or more.

This project has taken longer than I expected, but for a couple old geezers I guess that's OK.  Time for Tylenol and bed. 

Friday, July 22, 2011

Shower is now tiled and Jim has put up most of  the hardware. We have ordered the glass shower enclosure, it should be here next week. We ordered a frameless shower enclosure and it was not cheap ($1800.) To save a bunch of money we could have ordered one with a frame, but I wanted a clean and crisp look. Can't wait for the enclosure to be installed. One of the best remodel decisions we made was using the RediTile shower pan. It not only guarantees the shower will never leak, it made tiling the shower floor SO EASY! 

We hung the vanity mirrors and they look great!  So glad the vanity work is done. If you've never purchased framed mirrors before you are in for severe sticker shock. I wanted frames with an unusual shape and they are very expensive ($200 ad up!) Then I found these at Lowe's for $79 a piece. Unless you examine the backs you can't tell they're made of plastic! Everyone raves about how beautiful they are!!   

Finished tiling the bathtub. For the tub face I added three rows of pencil trim. They were a pain to install and the trim was very expensive ($7 a foot.) But it was just the touch I needed. A little detail, but nothing fancy. I used a TON of the tiny red tile wedges again, don't know how I would have done the tiling without them.

We are now laying the new floor. The upstairs is a master bedroom suite so I wanted the hallway, bedroom and bathroom flooring to flow throughout the space. The bathroom complicated my plan because it needed to be waterproof. The solution was Traffic Master Allure Ultra flooring. Looks like plank wood flooring, but is click and lock vinyl planks. It's 100% waterproof (hooray) and comes in many wood finishes. This flooring also comes in a ceramic tile look. It took us a while to figure out the layout (down the hallway, into the bedroom and then into the bathroom.) Getting the hang of the click and lock function also took some time, but once we had that figured out it laid down pretty quick. Jim would cut the pieces and I would install them. All you need is a case cutter to install the tile. Last year we bought a Roomba for the downstairs ceramic tile floors (where it does a great job.) Looking forward to using it upstairs now that the wall to wall carpet is gone. No more vacuuming the darn carpeted stairs and bedroom!!!!!!


Painting has been one of the hardest items on my list. With a 30" vaulted ceiling painting up high has not been fun. I am not keen on heights so standing at the tippy top of the tall ladder has made my tummy hurt and killed my back. There is a little touch up left on the bathroom ceiling and I have contacted a painter to do the 3 or 4 hours of painting left.
Soon I will be down to the pretty work, hanging pictures, new drapes and bedding, etc. Almost done!

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Camping in Coos Bay, Oregon

Thinking of taking a vacation? Let me recommend Sunset Bay State Park just south of Coos Bay, Oregon to you. Our family has been vacationing there for many years. Since we live in northern California where summer temperatures soar to over 100 degrees we like to take a break from the hot weather and head north to the cooler Oregon coast. Sunset Bay Campground is a real gem! Surrounded by lush ferns and bog lilies each site is beautiful and private. Deciduous forest butts up to each site, providing the perfect habitat for birds. The air is filled with bird songs. It's a very short walk from your camp site to the bay where gulls
bathe at the mouth of a small fresh water creek that runs into the bay. The bay is perfect for playing in the sand, kayaking on calm waters, wading in the shallows, swimming in the cold water, checking out the tide pools and hiking.

Just offshore and tucked around the point is Cape Arago Lighthouse. In the mid-1800's, Coos Bay had become a center for the transport of lumber from Oregon's forests. To protect ships a 25 foot wooden tower housing a Fresnel lens was constructed.  Almost immediately, the elements took their toll on the lighthouse. Due to the demands of mariners for a better light, the original lighthouse was replaced in 1909.  Eventually erosion threatened the second lighthouse and in 1934 a third lighthouse was built.  This lighthouse remained in service until it was decommissioned in January, 2006.

Just south of the campground is Shore Acres State Park and Botanical Garden. This is one of my favorite gardens and I am constantly borrowing design and planting ideas from them. The gardens (seven acres) include a really lovely Japanese garden with a large pond. Rose enthusiasts will discover an All American Rose Test Garden.

Further down the road is Simpson Reef and Shell Island. The offshore rocks, islands and reefs provide breeding and resting areas for sea birds and marine mammals. You may see Gray Whales, Harbor Seals, Northern Elephant Seals, Stellar Sea Lions, California Sea Lions, Black Oyster Catchers and Pelagic Cormorants here. On the day this photo was take there were Sea Lions, Harbor Seals and Elephant Seals basking in the sun.

At the end of the road is Cape Arago, my personal favorite. The views are gorgeous! 

Vacationing on the coast also means great seafood. If you don't mind a little mud you can go clamming at low tide; or rent crab pots to catch Dungeness crab; or  you can buy shrimp straight off the boat in Charleston Harbor. YUM!

Our favorite thing to do at Sunset Bay Campground is PARTY! This year our party theme was Fiesta! There were serapes for the kids (and dogs) sombreros and Mexican leis for the everyone. We served pink lemonade in Margarita glasses (Ole) and had awesome Mexican food. We played pin the tail on the burro and a ring toss game with a blow up cactus. We even had a pinata! Some of the more daring members of our group did a conga line around the campsite. Everyone agreed it was our best party EVER.

Time to go back to work on the bathroom - Adios!