Thursday, September 30, 2010

We Interupt this Great Life for a Flood

Forget whatever I had planned for this week.  Life had something else in store.  I came home from registering my car Tuesday to see water tracks coming from under the front door sill.  Inside was evidence the powder room toilet had overflowed (water came from the washer).  I started mopping and Jack called our insurance agent - and the septic people.

Gray water was down  the center hall, an inch deep in the under the stairs closet, seeped into the living room and kitchen.  Bad part:  everything but the kitchen and bath is laminate flooring - fairly new laminate.  It all had to go. 

We had a visit from a sweet claims adjuster who declared us covered by our homeowners insurance.

Some nice damage control folks came yesterday morning to tear up the laminate in the wet areas, spray mildewcide and leave three powerful fans, two dehumidifiers and an air cleaner. It sounds like a wind tunnel downstairs

 Septic was located.  I was delighted I could remember where the 2nd (hidden) tank was. This picture is for future reference.

Septic was pumped.  (My driveway looked like a disaster convention with all the trucks.)
BL Hubby and I will get to install a new floor downstairs.  We're still waiting for our favorite septic tank repair guy to consult tomorrow on replacing the pump.  (We really wish we had listened to him when we first moved in and had the drain fields redone so we didn't need to pump.) Until then it's showers at Grandma's!

Some bright spots. Our first floor is quite open and the laminate flows seamlessly from the living room through the hall and into the dining room.  I loved how well the installation went getting the flooring to look good throughout the three rooms and through three big openings.  It was a lot of work and quite a bit of  help from BL BIL, who was making his living at the time laying a lot of laminate, to make it look good without any transition pieces.  Our insurance (and most policies) will not cover replacing the flooring in rooms not damaged in order to match the new laminate to old.  It looked like the dining room might not have got any water under the laminate and if so then the insurance wouldn't replace it and then we would have to pay for the dining room laminate out of pocket or live with a big transition piece and the dining room not really matching the rest of the downstairs.  Fortunately (unfortunately?) the water went a couple of floorboards into the dining room, also, so my downstairs won't look like a patchwork quilt.

  Since laminate products go out of stock almost as soon as you buy them you can't just patch like you could if they were hardwood,  the whole floor has to be replaced but a lot of the flooring is still good.  We've elected to take up the good parts ourselves and I'll be able to install it upstairs in a room or two.

I've  been wanting to do a little update of our space.  Watch what you wish for.  I still think updating by disaster is a bad idea.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Adventures in Painting Signs

Entrance to Farm

I've been painting like mad this last week, but this weekend was another kind of painting.  Wednesday night the biggest BL boy called.  He begged me to come visit and make him some signage - and he was so persuasive we agreed.  We loaded up early Friday and drove 9 hours to Lexington, KY to this destination:

Entrance Sign

 Our BL DIL's family have farmed a beautiful piece of land down the prettiest road in the Lexington bluegrass country for about 50 years.  The farmhouse is about 150 years old and gives me and my sisters serious house envy.  This is no show farm  but a real working family farm.  This is the third year that they invite everyone to come enjoy a giant corn maze, pumpkin patch, hayride and other farm frivolity.  This is no ordinary corn maze but almost 10 acres of paths to get lost in.  It's one of the best in the nation.  Just look:

BL boy cuts  the maze and ramrods the fun.  I love his role as "CORN COP".  Sorry about the bad cell phone picture.  He goes to the maze so attired if someone is misbehaving.  It's amusing and non threatening but gives a friendly reminder that you shouldn't throw corn, etc.

This year you can climb on a giant hay stack and watch goats climb a giant tower and feed them, too.

Climbing Goats

A friend of our sweet DIL had painted their entrance sign a few years ago.  BL boy refreshed it and had big plans to paint some cute directional and informational signs but when he came to the art he got timid.  Our DIL has done some signs for him but she was swamped by work and he decided maybe Mom could do better than he could.  I had never thought about marketing my painting for signage but this was fun, and I learned a lot.  Lettering has never been my thing but practice makes perfect.  Here's what I managed in a day and a half.  This sign is viewed from the street when they are closed.

I did two "museum type" signs designed to be informational when they have kids and school groups:

How Corn Crows

Pumpking Growing

This is at the entrance with prices:

BL boy wanted this one for the entrance to the corn maze:

This one is for the pumpkin patch - fun pumpkin facts.

It was great to see this years maze and visit (briefly) with the BL kids.  I was paid in pumpkins.  Look at this haul.  There's still tons more like this grown on the farm and available to buy but the big orange one in the back with the great stem was the best of the bunch and I claimed it Saturday night before the crowds came.

And I got hugs from this BL Grandson.  Totally worth it:

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

New Look

If you know me you know that I'm a terminal DIY enthusiast.  I have trouble getting outside help.  Maybe I should seek treatment.  I did my own Etsy shop banner, and my own blog banner and set up.  It got me going but I never was completly happy.  Enter one of the Best Loved SIL's.  Yup, Ashley married an artist who suggested I needed a facelift, graphicly speaking.  When he found that I had proudly created my banners, etc. on my favorite graphics program, PowerPoint, he couldn't stop laughing.  I showed him, I got him to redu me.   I love my new look.  He has a graphic design company, 4 Style Graphics, and he did my new look here and check out my Etsy shop.  If you need graphics for wedding invites, blogs, anything, check out his facebook page.  My favorite is  my new business card.  

I love my little animals all lined up.  

Thanks Drew.