Tuesday, April 27, 2010

~Our Laundry Room~

Once again, here is the first drawing I did of the room:

Sadly, something happened to our computer so I lost the before pictures!!
I'll have to describe what the room was like; it had ugly, torn up linoleum flooring,
ugly dingy "white" walls, old machines, a very loud lighting fixture like you'd find in an office or 
something and across the main wall above the machines was
one long (useless) metal shelf that looked like this one:

To begin, we removed the shelf, replaced the fan with a recessed light fixture and fan in one, and
added another recessed light. We also had to move around the plumbing to accommodate the new sink, move the light switch to the outside of the door and add a couple new outlets. 
Thank God Sher is handy in all those areas and I have a nice Uncle in TX
 who is a plumber, so we can call him up with any questions!

After all of that was done we started building the cabinetry.
They were built so quickly I didn't even have a chance to snap pics!

Here are a couple of the upper cabs:
 the lower cab:
We put in some awesome drawer glides that won't bang shut no matter how hard 
you try to bang them closed..~I LOVE THEMMM... 

The part that took longer was us deciding on which inner profile to use on the doors.
I knew I wanted little arches for sure..we just had to find the right bit set in
order to get the profile we wanted.

Here they are:

While we were making those the flooring was curing..so up next was pulling out the 
ugly linoleum flooring:

Then I painted the walls and we put up the bead board.

Next we hung the upper cabinets...
This part went a lot faster than I thought it would!

Adding crown moulding and a chair rail came next:

I had to show how good Sher cut the trim pieces!..
I was so impressed :0)

We then installed the lower cabinet:

..and finally it was time to lay the flooring..it was exciting to
see the results of all our hard work actually FINALLY coming together!

I really love how the flooring came out. It takes such a long time, but it's
very rewarding in the end.

Painting the cabinets took forever..we put 2 thinned out coats of primer with sanding
in between, and then  2 thinned out coats of paint with fine sanding
in between them as well. Then a little glaze over that...
We are very happy with the results, they are nice and smooth to the touch.

Next we added the hardware... and brought in my new machines! Then the granite guys come out, and after that we installed the sink! YAY!! A beautiful working sink in the laundry!!

The laundry room is right next to the workshop so having a great sink in there is a must
 for us! It makes it so much easier to just run in there when
we need to clean up some yucky mess instead of running all the way across the house to
the kitchen!

Here are the final pictures.
It's hard to get a good shot because it's one of those rooms you walk through...

There are a couple things still left to do. I have to make a laundry sign just like the
one in the drawing, and we are thinking of possibly putting up a faux wall to hide the sides
of the machines.

For now that will have to wait, because we are already working on our next room,
which will include a piece of furniture that looks something like this:

Any idea what that might be???

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Making Our Own Wood Flooring..

YES...you read right...
YES...we are crazy!....haha

It all started when we went shopping around for walnut hardwood flooring.
The ones we liked were super expensive AND you don't
even get a nice layer of the actual hardwood!

So after debating with ourselves about whether or not we should tackle such a
 thing, we decided that doing it for ourselves and our home would be worth it.
If we ever truly get sick of making it we can go ahead and buy some.

We've decided to take it slowly -room by room-

First room on the list was the laundry room.
We thought this would be a great starting place because it's small and
we could dabble in a few things like cabinetry, flooring, plumbing etc..
so as to better prepare ourselves for when we decide to take on the kitchen.

I always draw out what I'm thinking for a room or a piece of furniture
so that Sher can get a better understanding of what's going on in my head.

Then, we will talk it out, tweak it and he will design a technical version in 
Google Sketchup and then we start building (in real life- lol) from there.

Building in sketchup is pretty cool because you can make all of your mistakes there,
and all the real measurements are there in the design so the cutting list is easy to print out.

So..here is the drawing I made of what I was looking to do with the Laundry Room:

It's not perfect at all..I forgot to draw in the crown moulding and kick space
under the cabinets etc. ...oops..hehe
BUT, it gives Sher an idea of what I'm talking about!

I'll post more pics of the Laundry Room in the next post,
and now I'll show you the process of us two crazy people
making our own hardwood flooring.

First we started by picking a 1 3/4" thick x 10" wide x 8 feet long walnut board at the lumber yard.
Then we cut it down to roughly 30" pieces,then using the bandsaw we resawed the board into
thin pieces:

 I don't have a pic of the sawing at the bandsaw because we are both involved during
 that process so there are no free hands for picture taking.

Sher then cuts down some baltic birch plywood sheets to fit the strips of walnut.
Baltic birch plywood is AWESOME..comes from Russia -it's super
straight and has a lot of nice uniform plys..it's not all junky and full of holes or spaces like
the plywood they sell and lowes or home depot.

We then glue the walnut veneers to the baltic birch,  and clamp them up to dry.

Here they are out of the clamps.
After they are nice and dry we run them through the planer to
make them all uniformly thick and to take away the re-saw markings.

(We so need a new planer -this little guy can't handle all the flooring anymore LOL)

After planing all of the boards, it's time to make the tongue and grooves at the table saw.
This is how the floor will snap together.

This takes a while because you have to make all the grooves on 2 sides of the planks,
and then switch blades and make all the tongues on the other 2 sides.

My job here is to check the flushness of the boards and to stack them up as 
Sher saws them..so I'm able to take pics hehe.

Once all of that is finally done, they get a sanding and then we lay
them all out to receive their 3 coats of poly.

Here are just a few of the boards waiting to get all pretty in oil based polyurethane.
The wood just wakes up and gets so beautiful when you apply the finish,
we decided to just clear coat and no stain.

So that's it!..Sounds simple enough but it sure does take a long time to get through all the steps.

Soon we'll show you what the finished floor and laundry room came out like! 

Thursday, April 1, 2010


My hometown is the Lovely San Antonio.
I REALLY miss San Antonio with all my heart!

Easter is one of those times of the year when I can do something traditional from back
home and fill connected to it again. :0)

I remember very fondly when I was a kid how my Grandma Severa 
would always be saving up her egg shells.

Then close to Easter (and Fiesta time) she'd bring out a HUGE bowl that she had
which was used to mix masa for tamales during Christmas time, and fill it to the top with confetti!

We'd cover the dining table with newspaper and bring out the cups with colored dye, colored pencils,
crayons and markers and have a blast coloring our eggs any way we pleased.

Every time I make cascarones(confetti eggs), I always find myself reminiscing about my Grandma :0)

SO! Cascarones are washed out egg shells that you decorate as you please, stuff with confetti, cover with tissue paper and then on Easter or during Fiesta (a celebration week in San Antonio) you
run around like crazies chasing your friends and family and crush them (in your hand first) on their heads!

Here's how we make them:

I didn't get pics of the naked eggs, but all you do is crack an egg more to one side than in the middle. 
 Wash it out right away and rub the inside with your fingers to make sure it's cleaned out well.
Then just set it with the hole faced down to dry out.

Next you decorate them in which ever manner you choose.

This year we didn't use any dye because we only made a few.
I still find myself coloring them with some of the designs my Grandma always loved.

After they are all decorated you fill them up with confetti.

Next you cut circles out of tissue paper that are big enough to cover up the holes.
Make a glue out of a couple tablespoons of flour and a little water.

Using your finger, you dip into the glue and rub it along the edge of the hole in the shell.
Then grab a piece of tissue and smooth it on .
Like this:

After that just set them back in an egg crate and let them dry!

Now your ready for a fiesta!!!
We usually have them around and then someone will sneak a couple and ambush
another with cascarones ~lol~ which then sparks an all out
Confetti egg battle.

They are always lots of fun.

We used to make tons of these...
They look so pretty and colorful.

Then afterwards you look pretty and colorful too!!!
*Make sure to crack the egg in your hand first and not on someones head! ~ that hurts!!*

I hope everyone has a wonderful and Blessed Easter!!

Sorry for the lack of posts lately but we've been buried in the laundry room redo.
We even handmade our own wood floors!! Yes, you read right lol.

More info and pics to come soon! :0)