We Need Sinks, ‘Cause It Stinks

Why you need p traps in your sinks, plus a new mantel

Happy Thursday. Wow, it’s already July! While we’ve had two in-progress sinks at the Pope House, it’s been a bit smelly. That’s because the helpful P traps are not in yet, so the little water barrier that keeps sewer gas in the sewer isn’t there. It’s not horrible, but we have incentive to finish the break room and office bathroom sinks sooner rather than later.

Installed but not connected yet.

Our hearts are in the right places. But our pipes are not, so the construction team is gonna have to figure out some PVC tricks to get everything up and running. In the meantime, it’s LOOKING pretty good.

The faucet looks good, even though Tubby’s faucet is gold and clashes. Tubby has the last laugh, though, because that faucet’s hooked up and works (enabling hand washing).

While we wait to solve the pipe problem, there’s still plenty to do. Chris has been finishing up on the flooring around the edges of the stairs, in preparation for finishing and trimming that area. That means it will be back to the welding machine to make the stair rails soon!

And all the wood for the trim in the reception area and my office has been cut. It’s all ready to go in, which will add a beautiful finishing touch. Speaking of finishing touches, we also have the next batch of epoxy ready to finish off the glass inserts in my office floor. This time, it’s going to work, by gosh!

The mantel, along with the trim that has not yet been nailed in place. The chair is my thinking area.

My mantel is installed and shining in its glory. Next for that area will be a cool hearth-like backing for my faux wood stove that I can’t wait to see come together. My whole office will be filled with one-of-a-kind works of decorative art at the rate things are going.

Going Plumb Crazy at the Pope House

Well, here’s an announcement I’m happy to make: we have a functioning toilet in the Pope house! Running water is a dream come true! And as soon as the bathroom faucet gets finished, we’ll be able to wash our hands.

It’s a functioning toilet. Wow.

If only that were as easy to do as it sounds. Apparently, the really cute faucets that we picked out are “chingasos” for Chris (screwed up). They are delicate as daisies and must be carefully installed. Oops.

Well, it IS a pretty faucet and handles.

However, all the fittings are attached to the walls in each room with water in it, and nothing leaks, so I’m impressed as heck. We will soon have flushing and hand-washing options! I can’t wait to see Tubby with running water.

In other areas of work, the floors are finished, other than putting a bit more epoxy in the areas with the glass in them. Much of the stuff Chris put on the floor ran straight through the cracks to the ground. Oops. It will be strong now, however, with it finally sealed. The glass will be subtle, but a cool touch to the room.

The reception room, gleaming away.

We love the color that they came out, and all the character you can see (like my office has both a red splotch and a green splotch that did not sand out). I think it looks pretty darned spectacular. Now we have to let the floors cure and put in the trim around the edges. Ahh.

My office, shining.

On the second floor, Randy worked really hard to get Meghan’s future office all taped off to be painted. He had the brilliant idea of bringing in the old carpet from the other big room and spreading it on the floor so no drips would happen when the ceiling is being painted. They’ll then drag it to its original place, where it will fit perfectly and protect the floors when that room gets painted.

All taped off and ready to paint. I assume the pictures will come down.

We are not sure why this ONE room has a popcorn ceiling, but we are just going to smoosh it down and not remove it. Maybe no one will look up, right?

The wallpaper is off the fourth bedroom. Its shiplap may end up getting painted to lighten up the room, but that won’t happen for a while, because it’s the “spare room” right now. It’s nice to have the scary wallpaper gone.

The piece of furniture in the middle is a wardrobe that’s going in Lee’s office to be his “closet.”

This morning, Kathleen and I got some colorful pots for the new plants we bought. That will cheer up both the outside and the inside of the house!

Holey, Holey Moley

Cameron, Texas is a town full of holes. Part of its fading small-town charm is that very few things are in tip-top shape, so holes are everywhere.

Now, the true banes of my existence are the holes in County Road 140, where the Hermits’ Rest is located. As a matter of fact, I even made a movie of the potholes last year. At the moment, there are a few places where no matter how hard you try, you ARE going to hit a pothole. A couple of them are so deep that I’m surprised people haven’t lost wheel covers.

Red stars are our ranch community houses. 140 is the land of the potholes.

And ARGH, never ride in a car with someone unfamiliar with the road who doesn’t know to weave right and left to avoid the Big Ones and slow WAY down on the humpy section at the hill! I thought I was gonna get sick when Mike was driving me on Sunday.

The pothole situation in the county is so bad that a couple of people have bought their own equipment and begged the city to let them maintain their own roads. I don’t think our front-end loader can cut it, though.

Ground Holes

Canova and me at the Bistro

My sister dropped by today to have lunch and see the progress on the Pope Residence, and she needs to be careful when she’s walking. There was NO way I’d lead her across the empty lot (AKA “The Old Rossen Place”), because there are so many depressions where there were once trees. I think I’ve talked about it before, but since we’ve been having so many elders and people dealing with mobility issues, these things just LOOM in my mind. Stay on the walkways, everyone! (We do have insurance, and we do plan to level that ground.)

Holes in Houses

I am much happier with some of the holes in our renovation project, though. Chris and Easton moved the back door over, to make room for the length of stairway we’ll need to give the bathroom a ceiling. He sent me this picture:

It’s a long way to the ground now!

I looked at it and said to myself, “Hmph, the door is in a good place but, why is it opening that way?”

Not five minutes later, I got a text from him saying, “It opens the wrong way, but it will open right once we move the front door to the back.” How’s that for anticipating my criticisms! Smart guy! In any case, the doorway hole is a good one.

There are lots of holes in the ground and in the floors right now, too. That’s because plumbing experts showed up to repair all the lines and install the ones for the break room area and the bathrooms. Once they are done, we can put in floors! Hooray!

They made sure to get all the outside work done today, since it’s supposed to rain the rest of the week. I like it when people are careful like that. One of the guys told me he’d get rid of the annoying sapling/weed tree growing right next to the house and on top of where the plumbing goes in. I will be sure to kill its trunk to death, since it can’t be helping the house stay level.

Here’s the framing for the stairs and bathroom. The floor has holes, for plumbing.
This kind of stuff.

A final hole I’ve been thinking about is the ones caused by the tiles in the Hermit Haus cracking. We have decided to just pull them all up, remove the walls, and cover the entire flooring area with that nice stuff people put down in garages, with the little sprinkles. That should last forever, and if the ground shifts, it won’t be the end of the world.

More later. Gotta get more work done before the exciting Chamber of Commerce Banquet!