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Category Archive: First-Floor Basics

From the archives: holes in the walls

Yep, we’re still NOT working on the house. It’s lovely. I have seen my friends and family more in the last few months than I have in years! The house is nearly spotless… no drywall dust, no caulk guns lying around, no extra lumber being stored in the kitchen. The physical and mental chaos created […]

Waking up in someone else’s house

When I hopped out of bed this morning and my feet landed on smooth, beautiful hardwood floors, I felt like I was at someone else’s house. Having just returned from a week in Bar Harbor, the floors are still very new and exciting to us. The endless hours of work have already been forgotten, and […]

Hardwood Floor Update: Done with the sanding!

We are officially DONE sanding floors downstairs. It was the longest weekend in recent memory – the only other time I remember working this hard was when we were laying tile floor in preparation for our open house. We worked straight through the weekend, except for a quick run to the local townie bar to […]

Cross your fingers……..

If all goes well, I will go home tonight and check the bedroom floor and it’s newest coat of varnish will be hard as nails. If it’s dry enough, we can move all our living room and dining room furniture into the bedroom, clearing them out completely. Then, this weekend will be floor-o-rama as we […]

Waiting it out

We wait, and wait, and wait for the varnish to dry (and apply a second coat, and wait some more). While we wait, we sleep on a mattress on the living room floor, between a displaced radiator and a giant mound of STUFF. The floor is our new bedroom – here’s what the house looks […]

Hardwoods – 2 down, 2 to go

How much Advil does it take to dull the pain caused by 2 12-hour days of kneeling and squatting? And why the hell didn’t I buy my own set of knee pads??? Our weekend can be summed up in a few words – pain, exhaustion, and exilhiration. We rented an orbital drum sander Saturday morning, […]

Hardwood floor repair – it’s a start!

After our salvage shop trip on Saturday, we came home and ripped into the floors. Having the energy to start a new project after a long day of driving can only mean one thing – our motivation is back. Let the games begin. Out went the rotted bits under the radiator, and about 10 cupped […]

Salvage shop score

Every few months, we pack up the dogs and head out on a roadtrip to Rochester, NY. It’s not a bad drive – about 2 hours – and it’s home to one of our favorite salvage shops, Historic Houseparts. This past weekend, in our search for old oak flooring, we inevitably decided to check what […]

Preparing our hardwood floors – advice?

I’m dreaming of the day our (thoroughly cleaned) hardwood floors do not look like they’re caked with four layers of mud and grit and grime. Right now, they ain’t pretty. Even my father, who’s more frugal than me, thought maybe we should just throw down carpet and hide them for a bit. But I’ve held […]

The end of the flip-flop era

We pulled up the downstairs carpet the day we moved in, over a year ago. Since then, we haven’t dared go barefoot for fear of stumbling upon one of the carpet staples or tacks that were scattered across the hardwoods like little landmines. But now, finally, we’re free to let our feet breath! I spent […]