First Day of Demo!

Well we closed on the house Tuesdays, Wed I was by myself at the house and I got just  little work done tearing down the drop ceiling in Beth’s bedroom. But today was super productive. I had Daniel, Megan, BJ, Thomas and me all working most of the day. We almost filled the dumpster.

Thomas started on the pile of concrete bags and empty paint cans. He moved, all by himself, 3780 pounds of concrete today. It was quite the workout!. The drive way looks so much bigger with all the junk gone. I can’t wait to get that van towed away!

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While Thomas was working outside I started pulling up all the nasty pee stained carpets. They were so old and thread bear that they came up easily. But thanks to all the spills and/or pee the pads were all stuck to the wood floors. Megan got there just in time to work at scraping the pads off the floors.

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I then spent the rest of the day (when I wasn’t helping the boys with their projects) slowly lifting up all the tack strips and pulling all the staples out of the floor. I’m still not done, it will keep me busy for awhile tomorrow too. But I did take a picture just to prove that I was actually doing something, not just following the kids around with a camera.

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Once Thomas moved inside the house he tackled a wall in the kitchen that I wanted removed. Megan jumped in and helped for a few minutes before she had to leave for work. I love this picture of them both going at it. By the time I grabbed my camera Megan was cowering in the corner, just a little scared of Thomas with a crowbar. I made her jump back in for the picture.

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Bj was nice enough to come over and help even though he had school last night from 5-10pm, then he worked from 10:30pm- 6:00am, he was at the house by 10am with no sleep. He worked until 3, then only got a couple hours of sleep before he had to head back to work all night tonight.

Him and Daniel removed the very heavy cement washtub in the basement then got to work in the bathroom gutting it down to the studs.  The only thing we’re saving in the bathroom is the bathtub, hopefully it will survive the renovation.

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When it was time to start tearing out the ceiling BJ got out the heavy gear. He had his firefighter gear in his car and thought that it would do a better job of protecting him from the falling cement ceiling than having no gear at all. He looks so official in his uniform!

The kids were amazing today, they all worked hard and kept at it until we finally called it  a day. The dumpster is 3/4 of the way full and we still have a full day of demo tomorrow.

 

 

The first day of Spring

And it is only 43 degrees, brrr… unless you’re working out in your yard, then you may build up a little bit of a sweat. I was motivated to clean up my flower beds because I bought myself a present at the antique mall today.

The antique mall where I have my booth is like my very own room of requirements from Harry Potter. if there is something that I am pining for eventually it pops up in one of the many booths at the mall. When I go in to restock my booth I will walk down just one or two aisles on my way out. Even while walking through such a limited part of the mall I happen upon treasures that I have been searching for.

Today’s treasure is something I’ve been talking about for a few months now. But I really didn’t think that I had any hope of finding one. Until I walked around a corner at the antique mall and right in the middle of a booth I saw a claw foot cast iron bathtub! Yay, I think I squealed when I saw it.

I love having two strong boys to help me move things around. Because this tub is HEAVY!

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BJ tends to get hurt at my house, so I don’t know why he is the one walking backwards through the rock garden.

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I’m not sure if that will be its permanent home, I’ll have to watch it for awhile and see how I feel. Whenever it does find it’s final home then I will start worm composting in it. I think I need to clear out some of the other yard junk around the tub, the tub put me over the maximum amount of yard junk for one area. No worries I have plenty of other areas to spread it to.

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Everyone loves water parks

After our fun at COSI we all walked across the bridge to the waterpark at the Scioto Mile. It has been a ridiculously hot spring, which is hard for these Seattleites to take considering it’s only 60 degrees out west.

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So contemplative

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and Zen-like

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Even the big kids got in on the fun. BJ said he didn’t plan on getting wet, but how can you resist?

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Thomas was running towards me being silly, this really nails his essence, I think.

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It’s even more fun when the BIG sprinklers come one…

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What a great day with friends and cousins.

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Even G-ma and G-pa came along, it’s like they’re homeschooling parents now that they’re taking care of my niece and nephew while my sister is working on getting her house sold.

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And the race is on…

One place that my boys liked to go, but is not much fun by yourself, is the BMX dirt bike track in south Columbus at Heer Park. Since Daniel went away to college it has not been much fun for Thomas. Until BJ got back into town. So last week on a free day I took the boys down to check it out. BJ was a bit hesitant, not knowing what to expect. He was worried that there would be lots of other kids at the park and he would embarrass himself. Luckily there were only 2 other kids and all 4 boys seemed to get along just fine.

After a few practice runs the boys were ready for a race. Thomas had just finished a race with the other 2 boys that were at the park. They beat him by quite a bit but we guessed they were from the neighborhood so they probably spend a lot more time at the track then poor Thomas. BJ may have thought this would be a good time to race Thomas since he was still a little winded from the last race.

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And they’re off….

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BJ took the lead right from the beginning

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and managed to stay in front through the whole race.

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And here he is going for his victory. Thomas really fell behind by the end of the race. I think BJ wanted to go out on a high note since he didn’t ride anymore after this race.

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Thomas’ favorite thing to do at the track is the jumps. He likes to see how much air he can get. I think it feels much more impressive than how it looks in the pictures.

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After a few successful jumps Thomas decided to go get his helmet (yes, that is a motorcycle helmet) so he could really go full force into the jumps.

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All was going well after the first jump and going through the first turn. Here he is gearing up for the next big jump…

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Then I got distracted by this adorable little girl that came running up to me. And I completely missed Thomas’ major wipe out. I didn’t realize he wrecked until I saw him picking his bike up off the track. He was pretty shaken up and little bloody so it was time to go home. I guess the motorcycle helmet was a good idea after all since he landed on his face. Luckily there were no head injuries just some scraped knees.

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On the way home BJ did let me know that this wasn’t really his thing, even after beating Thomas in the race. So we’ll probably not be returning unless some other friends want to go check it out also. Maybe BJ would prefer to check out some the skate parks that around the city.

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Another fun day with the boys

We are really enjoying having BJ, umm I mean William (that is just not gonna stick) back with us in Ohio. It’s like Thomas’ long lost brother has returned.  The boys are doing great together, they must still be in the honeymoon phase because they have not had any fights or problems at all. It probably helps that they’re not together everyday. BJ splits his time between our house and my parents house. That little bit of away time seems to be keeping everyone happy.

I don’t think BJ was expecting to have as much fun as he’s been having hanging with all our homeschooling friends. It’s always a little awkward being the new kid in a group. But our group of kids are just awesome and completely welcoming to everyone that joins them.

We’ve been to the rock climbing wall at the Scioto Audubon Park twice this week. The second time was for a class on climbing the wall. That was nice because there were lots of rangers there to help belay the kids. Unless you have at least 2 people with gear you can’t climb with the ropes. The kids still have fun though, even when they don’t get to climb all the way to the top.

Climbing wall: The largest free outdoor climbing wall in the country, 35 feet high. Climbing is free, but climbers must bring their own ropes and equipment. The climbing wall opens at 9am and closes one hour before the park close. On the second Friday of the month, from March through November, the climbing wall will stay open till midnight.

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There’s also a fun playground for the kids to play on on when they’re not rock climbing.

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Circuit Benders’ Ball

Thomas, BJ and few friends did a workshop this past weekend at The Columbus Idea Foundry on building a Two Transistor Light Theramin.

And what exactly does that mean you may be asking? Well essentially it is noise maker that has a light sensor on it. But in the process of building that the kids learned how to solder the very small electronic connections and they learned how to create a simple two transistor light Theremin based on the 1976 Forrest M. Mims III design.

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Both Thomas and BJ knew how to solder form previous classes they’ve taken. But building the transistor was something new for them both. BJ thought it was even more difficult than working on computer boards like he’s done in the past.

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All the kids ended up with their own noisy little transistors, whose sole purpose seems to be only to annoy all the older people within earshot.

A new helper around the house

My sister and her family are in the process of moving back to Ohio from Seattle! We are all so excited to have our family back together again. The journey to Ohio is happening in stages. The first person to make the trip is my nephew BJ, or as I hear he now goes by William. He got in Wed night and we have already put him to work on the house.

There was one section going into the kitchen that still needed that dreaded plaster and lathe board knocked down. In an effort to not cover the kitchen in black dust I put up tarps on all 4 sides of the space and I was hoping the boys could just stick their arm in the sheets with a crow bar and pull it all down.

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That worked, kind of…they managed to get a bit of the plaster to fall down.

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But eventually BJ just had to climb in and really go to town on it.

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Yeah it was really that dusty. But he did have a breathing mask and goggles on.

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This is only about half of the debris, I cleaned up half way through to try and keep him from stepping on any nails (that didn’t quite work he did step on a nail that I had to pull out of his shoe, oops. He was a trooper he never even complained.)

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Here’s the finished area, all the plaster down and ready to be dry walled….

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I love having some fresh blood to help around here. I think we’ve worn our own kids out. Poor Daniel never even comes to visit anymore for fear that we’ll put him to work. Will this renovation ever be done?????