Tag Archives: cs house

Legs Hurt (T-89)

It would probably have something to do with the fact that I bicycled down Pikes Peak this past Saturday morning!

My dad saw in one of those tourism guides this really cool ‘Thing-To-Do’ in Colorado Springs: Bike down Pikes Peak. Here’s the website link for the company that does it (www.bikithikit.com), because if you really want to bike down the mountain, you have to do it through this company or one just like it, as special permits are required. Those of you who don’t feel like visiting the website though, here’s the scoop: you meet at this place in Old Colorado City at 6:15am and after signing away all the waivers, getting fitted for a helmet, and getting some grub, you pile in their van (which has the bikes you use on top) and drive up to the summit of Pikes Peak (weather permitting) via Pikes Peak Highway. You definitely want to do the morning run (a morning and an afternoon one are offered), as afternoons here on the Front Range are notorious for turning stormy like clockwork at right around 3:30pm. We had a small group (only 3 of us) and there were 3 staff members to go with us, so it was kind of nice. Apparently once summer vacation gets into full swing that’s when it’s super packed. Anyways, our weather was tremendous this Saturday morning. Crystal clear skies and beautiful temperatures. Melissa, Sara, and Daniel drove us up the road, which is actually quite a scary ride, especially in a big ol’ van. There are numerous points on the drive up there when it’s a nice big drop off off to the side and as we were heading up the mountain, I realized the road was really steep in most places, especially as you really head up the mountain. The views were astounding though. Finally, around 7:45 or so, we were at the top of the mountain and after a few briefings on safety and operation, we were on our way. The van follows you from behind so as to block any cars from running you off the road, which is very nice. I ended up going the slowest because honestly I haven’t been on a bike in forever and when you’re that high up and on that steep of a road, definitely nerves came into play. By the end I was going faster, but at that top part, where you’re freezing, the wind is blowing like hell, and the road is filled with bumps and it’s really not even a road at many points, it’s a tad overwhelming. But those were the only things I could even think about calling concerns as the adventure was amazing! You can see forever. It’s invigorating being out there before most people are up yet on a Saturday. The road was very sparse with traffic at the top. Closer to the fishing reservoirs it definitely got more crowded, but still, you’re immersed in such amazing natural scenery you don’t care. And all you hear, while you’re FLYING down the road, especially in the last third of the ride, is the wind. It’s awesome. Dad and I definitely had an awesome time. The pictures below can speak to the amazing journey it is – and if you ever have the inkling and the opportunity to do this, don’t even hesitate. Sign up. The fee covers the bike and helmet rental, the fee to get on the Pikes Peak highway, free food and snacks before and during, and a free lunch at the end of the ride at the Wines of Colorado restaurant, which is definitely a great way to end the trip. So do it!!!!

2 Jun 2007 – Bike Riding down Pikes Peak!

A pretty sweet stitched together photo from the summit - right side had a bad line though!A pretty sweet stitched together photo from the summit - right side had a bad line though!
A pretty sweet stitched together photo from the summit - right side had a bad line though!
Here's the route you drive up and bicycle downHere's the route you drive up and bicycle down
Here's the route you drive up and bicycle down02-Jun-2007 06:25, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec
02-Jun-2007 06:26, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.04 sec, ISO 141
 
02-Jun-2007 07:54, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
02-Jun-2007 07:54, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.002 sec
02-Jun-2007 07:54, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
 
Dad at the Railway summitDad at the Railway summit
Dad at the Railway summit02-Jun-2007 07:55, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
Me giving the thumbs upMe giving the thumbs up
Me giving the thumbs up02-Jun-2007 07:55, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.004 sec
Somehow I missed these the first go-round: Here's my Dad at the top before the ride startedSomehow I missed these the first go-round: Here's my Dad at the top before the ride started
Somehow I missed these the first go-round: Here's my Dad at the top before the ride started02-Jun-2007 08:01, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.004 sec
 
And me too!And me too!
And me too!02-Jun-2007 08:01, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.004 sec
Blurry pic of the van at the topBlurry pic of the van at the top
Blurry pic of the van at the top02-Jun-2007 08:03, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.002 sec
Another group of folks who were getting ready to snowboard the mountainAnother group of folks who were getting ready to snowboard the mountain
Another group of folks who were getting ready to snowboard the mountain02-Jun-2007 08:11, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
 
02-Jun-2007 08:13, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.006 sec
Typical Tourist...Typical Tourist...
Typical Tourist...02-Jun-2007 08:14, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.013 sec
Here's the beginning/end of the road!Here's the beginning/end of the road!
Here's the beginning/end of the road!02-Jun-2007 08:15, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.004 sec
 

And to finish off the pictures of my bathroom project, I present to you one last pic with the new lighting and the new shelf I put in. There are still things to be fixed because of installation ‘concerns’ (okay, I’ll fess up: the old lighting, when removed, showed that the electric casing with all the connections was NOT centered on the old or new mirror. And my new lighting only has a central circular connection to the wall, so that still has to be patched over as we had to get ‘creative’ in bringing the wires to the middle; plus, the two remaining walls need to be painted pure white as well). Regardless, my bathroom rocks. Now I really have to think as to what I would want to do next to my house. I think my living room needs some reorganization, but nothing major or Lowe’s related…? Anyways, back to work for another fun week, I’m sure. Oh joy.

03-Jun-2007 19:47, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 124
 

Nearly completed (T-94)

The 5-day Memorial Day weekend I just had was not exactly relaxing, but productive for sure!

Besides hanging out w/ friends at night, most of my weekend was spent working on the bathroom with Dad and Pat, so my ‘vacation’ was much more work than even my real ‘work’ is. Which leads me to explain why I was so damn tired at work today and why I came home and just passed out. But I’m awake now and before I return to sleep, I wanted to post my complete picture set of my bathroom renovation, from beginning to end. Okay, the true end has yet to be reached (the whole replacing the lights and putting up the shelves) but those pictures will come soon enough. I’ll also get to posting pictures from the Royal Gorge which I visited with Dad and Pat on Thursday. Get this – this upcoming Friday I’ll be riding down Pikes Peak with my Dad on bicycles. This should definitely be interesting as long as the weather holds out, which it usually does until the afternoon. I hope I can take lots of pictures from that, as it should be amazing.

Alright, so here’s my photos from the bathroom project:

The Lisa Dr Master Bathroom Renovation Project – May 2007

You wanna know what the catalyst was that actually got me working on this? The damn towel bar. Last weekend, I had just finished drying off after showering and when I put the towel back on the rack, the bar just fell off the wall. I couldn’t snap the bar back on (although I know what I was doing wrong now), so I was like, Fuck It, I’ll Just Buy a New One… and that my friends, is the starting point of this whole endeavor. For now I was thinking, hell, I’ll get the towel bar that will match what I’ve been planning. But now that I had gotten one piece of my new bathroom, it was time to just go for it, and with a long weekend approaching, what better time?

And to be honest, I’ve been planning how I wanted this renovation to go for a pretty long time. You can see past journal entries with my drawing proposals, and I think the final result is pretty close to those. And because of my hours and hours of hanging out at Lowe’s researching what I wanted to install, the only time I really spent this weekend was fortunately on installation and not what I wanted to do. Except for the walls – I still hadn’t figured out what I wanted to do with that until that afternoon.

I definitely couldn’t have done this without my Dad (and Pat) so much thanks goes to them for helping and doing so much on this project. Plus, the books below were INVALUABLE to my efforts and I heartily recommend them to anyone else considering some DIY work:

– Popular Mechanics’ Moneysmart Makeovers: Bathrooms (This book is an AMAZING resource for all aspects of this project – got this for 75% off at Barnes & Noble’s discount rack; best deal ever)
– Stanley: Complete Plumbing (helpful for figuring out the nuances of plumbing, pipes, etc)
– Stanley: Complete Tiling (essential for making decisions on what to use for my floor, installing, removing fixtures, etc)
– Lowe’s Complete Guide to Paint and Color (extremely helpful for painting techniques)
– DIY Channel: 10 Weekend Bathroom Makeovers (great for ideas and instructional how-tos on certain techniques)

With all the reading I had done for this project, really I was mentally ready. But my biggest holdup had been fear of actual execution – but as you’ll see below, that quickly went away. Especially once you’ve completed ‘Demolition Day’. You’re committed at that point!

24 May 2007 – My Bathroom before the renovation

My MBR bathroom in its "before" state
My MBR bathroom in its "before" state24-May-2007 16:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
View of the mirrors
View of the mirrors24-May-2007 16:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Your days are numbered, vanity
Your days are numbered, vanity24-May-2007 16:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
Almost time to say goodbye, old linoleum
Almost time to say goodbye, old linoleum24-May-2007 16:05, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
View with the wooden shelving unit gone
View with the wooden shelving unit gone24-May-2007 16:59, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
An idea of what the new tile will look like
An idea of what the new tile will look like24-May-2007 16:59, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

25 May 2007 – Demolition Day

Dad arrived in the morning to help me tear all the guts out of my existing Master bathroom. The first goal was to get rid of the vanity/sink combo. What a bitch that was. First, we discovered that the existing vanity had a back wall and no big holes for the vanity to allow the supply valves through. So we had to cut those out after first trying to disassemble them. That was a lot of effort but fortunately, it did come out eventually. Also, while I went on a Lowe’s run, Dad got the mirror off the wall without shattering it (which was one thing I was sure would happen!). While that may sound like not much work, it in fact took from 9 to Noon, at which point Dad went home. I then proceeded to take the toilet out, which went much easier than I expected thanks to all my books. Then the REALLY fun part occurred: taking the linoleum out. It was easy enough to peel that stuff off, but it was the remaining adhesive that was the real beyotch. I did get adhesive remover (like wallpaper remover), but you have to cut through the paper so that the remover can soak through. After cutting at the floor like a mental patient, I then let the remover soak for an hour, then it was scraper time. Thank God I had bought that scraper or else I would have left my back and vertebrae back there in agony. After many pauses to pick up all the pieces, my wooden subfloor was finally cleaned off and ready for tomorrow’s fun: Putting all new tile back down.

I duct-taped the HELL out of this mirror preparing for the shatter that never happened
I duct-taped the HELL out of this mirror preparing for the shatter that never happened25-May-2007 08:39, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
An emptied out vanity cabinet
An emptied out vanity cabinet25-May-2007 08:58, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Picture of the piping for future reference just in case
Picture of the piping for future reference just in case25-May-2007 08:58, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
My Dad affected by the sewer fumes, presumably... (I see where I get my weird faces from)
My Dad affected by the sewer fumes, presumably... (I see where I get my weird faces from)25-May-2007 11:02, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
The vanity and sink are outta there
The vanity and sink are outta there25-May-2007 11:19, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
You can see how the mirror had been glued up
You can see how the mirror had been glued up25-May-2007 11:19, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.02 sec, ISO 141
 
The baseboards are gone and the toilet is next
The baseboards are gone and the toilet is next25-May-2007 12:11, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
More baseboard removal
More baseboard removal25-May-2007 12:12, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
The toilet tank taken off...
The toilet tank taken off...25-May-2007 12:46, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
...and at it's new home for the next few days
...and at it's new home for the next few days25-May-2007 12:46, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
The toilet bowl lifted off the ground with the sewer plugged up
The toilet bowl lifted off the ground with the sewer plugged up25-May-2007 13:07, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
There's the wax ring that keeps your bathroom from filling up with swamp gas
There's the wax ring that keeps your bathroom from filling up with swamp gas25-May-2007 13:07, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
It looks worse than it really actually is
It looks worse than it really actually is25-May-2007 13:09, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
25-May-2007 13:10, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Peeling the crappy linoleum up...
Peeling the crappy linoleum up...25-May-2007 13:34, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

26 May 2007 – Laying the Tile and Getting the Walls Right

The next day, Dad and Pat and the dogs all came up promptly at 0900 (to be known as the start of the work day from here on out this weekend). Today’s fun was to be focused on getting the room’s floor and walls worked on as you can’t really put all the other items in until those core functions are taken care of first. Obviously the first thing to do was to get the floor put in place. I had chosen to go with individual vinyl tiles for my floor as it was one of the easier things to do-it-yourself and not too expensive nor does it take a lot of work and time to install. I had definitely considered going the ceramic tile route, but my only holdback on that was all the necessary prep and post work needed for a proper tile floor. Getting a concreteboard subfloor, properly mixing the mortar and applying it properly, placing the tiles without fucking it up, letting the mortar set, then mixing and applying the grout, cleaning that all off, sealing the floor properly….yeah, maybe one day. But not this time. With vinyl tiles, it’s all about laying an adhesive primer on the floor and then laying the self-adhesive tiles on the floor in the right place. After that, you’re done. Sweet. So that’s what me and Dad did, with Dad becoming an expert tile cutter in the process. That did take a few hours, and then Dad and Pat went home for the afternoon.

At this point, I knew I had to still figure out what the hell I wanted to do with my walls. I had always envisioned a split-wall design with a chair rail being a breakpoint for the walls, but I just couldn’t find the right color. I initially envisioned a solid color for the blue lower part of the wall, but none of the blues I looked at meshed just right with the blues on the tile…but that was because there are two blues on the tile and trying to pick just one is nearly impossible. Then I thought maybe I’d tile the wall up to the chair rail point, but like I mentioned above, tiling takes a LOT of work. It looks great, for sure, but that’s if you know what you are doing. I don’t, at least with tile just yet. But with paint and color, I certainly do. So while wandering around Lowe’s for inspiration, I actually did find it – at the faux finishing section of the paint aisle. I found a few ideas immediately right there, first with a metallic finish that I thought would be cool and then a secondary stippling idea that I wasn’t too impressed with but I took home anyways just to consider it. At home, I realized the metallic idea, while cool, just wasn’t right for what my bathroom tiles had in them. Then the stippling idea took center stage – and I then saw that it matched the pattern on the tile perfectly. So back to Lowe’s I went and got those supplies (the base paint, the translucent glaze and a stippling brush) and applied the base coat that afternoon. You had to let it dry completely before putting the glaze on, so off I went with my friends that evening to see Pirates of the Caribbean 3!

Perhaps Dad is reacting to the adhesive smell?
Perhaps Dad is reacting to the adhesive smell?26-May-2007 10:47, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Me hard at work tiling the floor
Me hard at work tiling the floor26-May-2007 10:53, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
I LOVE tiling
I LOVE tiling26-May-2007 10:53, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
All the full tiles in place
All the full tiles in place26-May-2007 11:00, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Now the fun part with custom-cutting tiles to fit the small areas
Now the fun part with custom-cutting tiles to fit the small areas26-May-2007 11:23, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Ta-Dah!
Ta-Dah!26-May-2007 12:48, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
The base coat of Midnight Blue satin paint up and ready
The base coat of Midnight Blue satin paint up and ready26-May-2007 19:00, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
A slightly lighter view
A slightly lighter view26-May-2007 19:00, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.077 sec, ISO 141
Getting an idea of the color with the tile floor
Getting an idea of the color with the tile floor26-May-2007 19:21, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
Where the new vanity would go
Where the new vanity would go26-May-2007 20:27, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

27 May 2007 – Finishing the Paint and getting the vanity/sink ready

My faux finishing needed to get completed before we could do too much so that was what I got knocked out of the way first – going to town on the blue base coat with the Bluebell glaze on a stippling brush. I made sure to practice my technique on those parts of the wall sure to be covered by the vanity, so I think that by the time I got to highly visible walls, I didn’t do that bad a job. I’m sure experts would agree that my end result is not exactly what stippling is supposed to look like, but I like the end result and it looks freakishly like the blue pattern in the floor tiles, which is what I was going for. So score one for me!

After that was done, then it was time to determine ideal placement of the vanity with the sink on it, and to also get the baseboard and chair rail replacements, which is what Dad and I spent some time at Lowe’s accomplishing. Once we got back (Lowe’s on the weekends is certainly more crowded than on weekdays and evenings, let me tell you), Dad was able to show me how to successfully use my brand new jigsaw to cut pieces of baseboard and install them (even using a finishing nail set!). They went home and I ended up finishing most of the baseboards, securing the vanity to the wall, installing the new Delta faucet to my sink, and mounting the sink to the vanity and wall. Finally, I was able to succesfully reattach the toilet to the floor and have it work again, without leaks. Sweet. After all that excitement, I went over to Jeff’s for Game Night, which involved a great round of Uno Attack! (I have yet to meet someone who after playing this game didn’t Love it) and a game called Shout at TV which I rocked at. We even played a second round in which 7 of them played against me and I still won.

My stippling efforts done - I like it!
My stippling efforts done - I like it!27-May-2007 13:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Where the vanity would go
Where the vanity would go27-May-2007 13:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
My window seat slash tool bench
My window seat slash tool bench27-May-2007 13:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
First piece of baseboard installed
First piece of baseboard installed27-May-2007 14:03, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
The sink and faucet are one
The sink and faucet are one27-May-2007 14:23, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Vanity in its new home
Vanity in its new home27-May-2007 16:05, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
With the sink now in place too
With the sink now in place too27-May-2007 17:01, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Baseboard behind the toilet installed...
Baseboard behind the toilet installed...27-May-2007 17:01, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
...because it was time to make the toilet work again
...because it was time to make the toilet work again27-May-2007 17:43, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
Final piece of long baseboarding installed on the towel wall
Final piece of long baseboarding installed on the towel wall27-May-2007 18:56, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Detail of Toilet and Sink
Detail of Toilet and Sink27-May-2007 18:56, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
There's my tool bench again
There's my tool bench again27-May-2007 18:56, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
Grimacing Susan at Game Night
Grimacing Susan at Game Night27-May-2007 21:57, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Dallas loves game night
Dallas loves game night27-May-2007 21:57, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Dave and Jeff getting some snacks
Dave and Jeff getting some snacks27-May-2007 21:57, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

28 May(+) 2007 – Finishing Touches

Day 4 of the project found me ready for it to be done. It was very cool to have done this on our own, but after a certain amount of time, I think I was ready for a break but I also knew it had to be done. Regardless, I probably wasn’t the most happy person this day; grouchy may be more accurate of a term. Added to my mood was the fact that I hadn’t connected the faucet correctly to the sink (it leaked the first time) and that we had to get more plumbing stuff as the supply lines from the old faucet were too short for this one and we had to get more drain pipe. Luckily Dad knows a thing or two about all this stuff and was able to get it all working wonderfully. Sorry for being a jerk that day, dad! After all that fun, including hanging the new mirror (which went pretty easily as it had one of those self-leveling hanger bars), Dad and Pat left and I did some of the easier finishing touches, like putting up all the new chrome fixtures and painting the upper walls white (turns out that while I thought the original color was white, I was wrong – in fact it’s quite obvious now that it was a very off white/brown color; who knew?). All that remains now is for the lighting to be replaced and for my shelves to go up. I think I’ve found a place for my vertical shades-of-blue harbor painting as well. Sweet.

Anyways, here are photos from what my bathroom currently looks like (sans new lights and shelves). Expect to see the 100% completion pics sometime this upcoming weekend.

Working on the fun plumbing aspect of the vanity and sink
Working on the fun plumbing aspect of the vanity and sink28-May-2007 11:58, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 183
Ah...done. You can see the blue rug back in place as well as the new chrome TP holder
Ah...done. You can see the blue rug back in place as well as the new chrome TP holder28-May-2007 18:54, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Towel wall
Towel wall28-May-2007 18:54, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
28-May-2007 18:54, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Notice the new mirror and shelf over my sweet sink
Notice the new mirror and shelf over my sweet sink28-May-2007 18:54, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Towel wall
Towel wall28-May-2007 18:55, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
29-May-2007 21:03, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
View from the shower
View from the shower29-May-2007 21:03, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.1 sec, ISO 141
29-May-2007 21:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.1 sec, ISO 141
 
Detail on the Delta faucet
Detail on the Delta faucet29-May-2007 21:04, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.077 sec, ISO 141
Detail on the sink
Detail on the sink29-May-2007 21:05, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
29-May-2007 21:05, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
Hand towel and mirror detail
Hand towel and mirror detail29-May-2007 21:05, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.05 sec, ISO 141
 

Extreme Makeover – Bathroom edition (T-96!!!)

I have been super productive in getting my bathroom redone – here are some before and almost-done pictures:

BEFORE:

View with the wooden shelving unit gone
View with the wooden shelving unit gone24-May-2007 16:59, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

GETTING THERE (status as of today, 27 May):

...because it was time to make the toilet work again
...because it was time to make the toilet work again27-May-2007 17:43, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

My bathroom has definitely taken most of my daylight hours, but it’ sbeen so worth it as I’ve been learning LOTS by doing this. My tool chest has also gotten seriously bigger. For the bathroom though, my Dad and I started this up on Friday morning with pure destruction only at that point, which involved getting out the old vanity, mirror and linoleum. Sounds easy. Wasn’t. Over the next few days though, my bathroom has evolved into what you see above. And I’m stoked. Not done yet – the water feeds didn’t reach while using the old connections, so I have to get some of those. Plus, need to put the chair rail along the midpoint (the paint top looks ragged because I knew I’d be railing over it), hang the mirror, replace the lights, put up the shelving…and THEN I’ll be done. Because this has been a lot of work, I haven’t gotten to the car stereo project, and that’s probably gonna have to wait until next weekend. I can survive though!

Went and saw Shrek 3 on Thursday (quick review: decent movie, but nothing special) and Pirates of the Caribbean 3 last night (very entertaining – so far, my favorite ‘third’ movie of the summer, as it was a lot more fun than Shrek 3 or Spiderman 3).

Hope you’re all having a good holiday weekend – can’t believe my 5-day weekend is nearly over, but it certainly has been productive. It’s been fun having Dad and Pat over every morning to help and talk to. But anyways, it’s time to get cleaned up, get some dinner, and then go over to Jeff’s house to hang out with the gang. Sweet.

Here’s a pic from hanging out at Jeff and Jeremy’s house – much needed soak in the hot tub, as my back was sore after all the work during the day on the bathroom project. Alcohol doesn’t hurt either:

One more picture
One more picture25-May-2007 21:30, SONY DSC-W100, 2.8, 7.9mm, 0.025 sec, ISO 320
 

It’s Snowing. Seriously. In April. (T-129)

And by tomorrow, it’s supposed to be warm in the 60s again. Crazy!

Okay, so it’s been a week and a half since I’ve last updated. Plenty has happened! I finished Transition Assistance Program last week – I am SOOO stoked about getting out of the military. There was lots of good info that I got, and the most important stuff that I did get was help on looking for jobs and how to craft a great resume, cover letter, and interviewing skills. But by far the best was meeting with some of the local job market recruiters and realizing that I have a really good shot at finding a good job locally. And that’s the goal: stay in the Springs for a few more years and then see what can happen next. As some of you may know, I really am still wanting to do the Home Entertainment business (this does NOT mean in-home stripping, although I’ll do what I have to do! ;-p ). But regardless, the next few months need to be done. Just over 4 months to go! Can you believe it?

Alright, then this weekend was mighty productive! Jeff and I went and rented an aerator which looks like a lawnmower but instead it digs little holes in your lawn and yanks out the dirt so that when you water the lawn, there’s plenty of dirt entry points for better water absorption. Well, let me tell you, that is one hell of a chore. We did 3 lawns that day. And then we put fertilizer on the lawns, and I also started up my sprinklers again (just in time for one more snow fall – great…). Then that night, more Wii goodness ensued! The next day I then went weed-crazy with my new Rocket Weeder and literally filled a trash can with nothing but monstrous weeds. Scary. And after that I began my first hike on my quest to eventually hike Pikes Peak. That endeavor is scheduled for sometime in August, so I do have plenty of hiking to do in order to get myself ready. The one on Sunday was a pretty fun one and after that I am pretty sure that all the trails in the Front Range area of Colorado are going to be beautiful. And of course, you know that if there’s beautiful scenery, then there’s going to be PICTURES! Right now I’m going to put them amongst the journal photos, but eventually I want to create a separate photo portal for my hikes.

Anyways, today I sent out my resume for the first time to the two recruiters I met at TAP and it feels good to get them out. Now I need to continue sending them out, studying for my interview questions, and continue my classes (I’ve enrolled at O’Reilly School of Technology – my first class is horribly basic in HTML yet I think the CSS portion will be educational) and studying for the CISSP (which I may or may not take in September – apparently this has a pass rate of about 30% the first time…wonderful….and it costs ~$500 to take the test).

Okay, I’m done blathering on. It’s time for some pictures!

8 April 2007 – Easter Sunday Dinner at Susan’s

Jeff tries to open the wine, with no opener
Jeff tries to open the wine, with no opener08-Apr-2007 16:07, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Eric lends support
Eric lends support08-Apr-2007 16:07, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Susan shows off her ham
Susan shows off her ham08-Apr-2007 16:07, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
KD is ready to be fed
KD is ready to be fed08-Apr-2007 16:07, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Everybody awaits dessert
Everybody awaits dessert08-Apr-2007 17:23, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
All 4 dogs together = fun fun fun
All 4 dogs together = fun fun fun08-Apr-2007 17:23, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
Happy Schnauzers
Happy Schnauzers08-Apr-2007 17:23, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

We had a great time at Susan’s during this impromptu Easter Sunday dinner. It was nice to be able to all get together and have a nice dinner.

18 April 2007 – Susan’s Birthday at On the Border

18-Apr-2007 19:51, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
18-Apr-2007 19:51, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
18-Apr-2007 19:51, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 
Do I take the best pics or what?
Do I take the best pics or what?18-Apr-2007 19:51, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 8.0, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
KD and Eric....aww, so cute...
KD and Eric....aww, so cute...18-Apr-2007 19:52, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
Jeremy and KD...and a huge margarita
Jeremy and KD...and a huge margarita18-Apr-2007 19:52, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.017 sec, ISO 141
 

Other pictures I took were not allowed because the participants involved said my life would be forfeit if they showed up on the Internet. So you get to see the typical hilarial pics of me and KD. Lucky you.  [2015 Update:  I no longer fear for my life and those pictures are included!]

21 April 2007 – Aerating the Lawn

Aeration sucks
Aeration sucks21-Apr-2007 12:44, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 4.5, 18.776mm, 0.004 sec
Really, it does.
Really, it does.21-Apr-2007 12:45, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.002 sec
 

Can I say that I truly enjoy the fact that my hairline is the bane of my existence. I know it’s a petty thing to dwell on, but I would kill to have decent hair. If I thought I would look decent with a shaved head I’d do it because the current hair situation is unacceptable. But when I’ve dared to cut my hair super short, people tell me I resemble a prisoner. Wonderful.

22 April 2007 – Hiking Helen Hunt Falls in Cheyenne Canyon

#1 of my Trail Hikes - Helen Hunt Falls
#1 of my Trail Hikes - Helen Hunt Falls22-Apr-2007 16:31, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.005 sec
Me at the base
Me at the base22-Apr-2007 16:31, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 3.5, 10.487mm, 0.005 sec
Jeremy too
Jeremy too22-Apr-2007 16:32, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 3.5, 10.487mm, 0.006 sec
 
That's Helen Hunt Falls from the base
That's Helen Hunt Falls from the base22-Apr-2007 16:33, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.005 sec
Looking down from the top of the Falls
Looking down from the top of the Falls22-Apr-2007 16:34, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.004 sec
Here's the stream that feeds the Helen Hunt Falls
Here's the stream that feeds the Helen Hunt Falls22-Apr-2007 16:34, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
 
Me at the stream
Me at the stream22-Apr-2007 16:34, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
Jeremy liked the stream as well
Jeremy liked the stream as well22-Apr-2007 16:34, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.004 sec
Looking towards Spoon Falls (aka Death Trap falls)
Looking towards Spoon Falls (aka Death Trap falls)22-Apr-2007 16:39, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.006 sec
 
These seemingly smooth falls have caused numerous deaths
These seemingly smooth falls have caused numerous deaths22-Apr-2007 16:42, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 4.0, 15.599mm, 0.008 sec
Looking towards the Springs
Looking towards the Springs22-Apr-2007 16:42, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.002 sec
Another shot of the Spoon Falls
Another shot of the Spoon Falls22-Apr-2007 16:42, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.005 sec
 
Me...scared.
Me...scared.22-Apr-2007 16:43, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
Higher vantage point looking towards the city
Higher vantage point looking towards the city22-Apr-2007 16:45, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 4.9, 23.1mm, 0.005 sec
Me and the city view
Me and the city view22-Apr-2007 16:45, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
 

I really am looking forward to knocking more and more of these trails out – Pikes Peak or Bust!!!!

24 April 2007 – Still snowing (and it’s April)!

My camera focused on the screen door - cool!
My camera focused on the screen door - cool!24-Apr-2007 14:26, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.004 sec
Here's one through the glass door
Here's one through the glass door24-Apr-2007 14:26, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
More snow view
More snow view24-Apr-2007 14:26, Canon Canon PowerShot SD900, 2.8, 7.7mm, 0.003 sec
 

And that’s that for the pictures.

Coming up this weekend? Mom and Harv are coming into town! That should be a good time and it’ll be good to see them. Hopefully the weather cooperates and stays warm as of Wednesday. We don’t need it to be like it was the last time they visited when Colorado Springs decided to have its one and only fog days while they were here. Bizarre.

End of Another 4-day Weekend (T-193)

Damn, those weekends never seem to go by very slowly.

C’est la vie. Had a relatively eventful weekend though, which always makes it nice. To make it interesting, I’ll tell the story in reverse. I just finished watching 24, and I gotta say, Thank God that (former) President Logan is back on the show!!!!!!!! Now we’re talking! It looks like Mrs. Logan will be back too. SWEET. Also watched Marie Antoinette on DVD (a blind buy from Best Buy) – I think I liked it…. but honestly, while it was actually interesting to watch a take on Marie Antoinette that showed her as a girl way out of her element (and not just the monstrous “Let Them Eat Cake!” beyotch), nothing…seemed…to…actually…happen. And when the French Revolution occurred and things started to pick up…it ended. I don’t need to see guillotines and stuff, but maybe I do? Before I watched Marie Antoinette though, I caught up on Survivor, and realized, like a total moron, that I STILL forgot to TiVo the Amazing Race. DAMMIT! Survivor was great though, and it’s shaping up to be quite a season – especially if the Mavo team keeps losing and don’t improve their squalor. I also managed to get my car cleaned up and sweep out the garage of a lot of dirt and roadsalt that my car dumps on the floor once it dries out. All the snow we have had had led to my garage being filthy. Everytime I would drive into my garage, I’d cringe and go “Man, I really need to clean that out…” but of course I would have that thought right as I drive on top of it after a long boring day at work. And by that point, I was NOT going to go clean my garage. But it’s done, and looks great. All stuff I did after waking up on Jeff’s couch this morning from last night’s party at his house….

Yep, we had an impromptu party over at his house on Sunday night – it was a combined Dance Dance Revolution / Guitar Hero party – one room had the DDR set up and the other had Guitar Hero. It was freakin’ awesome. I of course had plenty to drink – but not too much, as I didn’t throw up or end up hungover. I know it helps to do a lot of DDR – not only is it an awesome workout, it sweats the alcohol right outta you. But good times nonetheless. We did this after driving home from Denver where we ended the Denver trip with a visit to Dave & Buster’s. It’s really hard not to have a good time at D&B’s, and this was no different. We played all the good stuff, including air hockey, the horse race skeeball game (my FAVORITE), 3D war games, all the gun games you could try, and a couple racing ones as well. Shuffleboard also, because shuffleboard is awesome. We didn’t eat there but we could have after exploring the Cherry Creek mall in Denver, which is WAY fancy. All the high-end stores are there, and it’s a blast to just look around in there. Anyways…

I’m really sleepy now – I have pictures to put up, but I’m not at the energy-level I need to be to put them up just yet. Tomorrow for sure. I’ll continue going backwards in time to recap what else I did, and perhaps I’ll have some energy to discuss other stuff too?