Thursday, November 19, 2020

MarketPlace Garage Upgrades

 A couple of weeks ago, I lucked upon someone giving away a slew of cabinets.  By the time I was able to get someone to watch my kids (my mom finally came back after one of her "I'm just gonna run a quick errand" trips) most of them were gone.  I was able to snag these two wall cabinets, along with a couple of matching base cabinets, one of which I kept.



A week or two later someone else was giving away more cabinets but the catch was you had to come and uninstall them.  I spent two hours getting as many as I could and filled the minivan up.  I ended up only needing these two that are hung, plus the one base with drawers.  I could have squeezed another smaller wall cabinet but decided instead to list everything I didn't need for $10 per cabinet on Marketplace and I got fast responses. A dude from Indiana came and bought them all up.



I'm really proud of my decision to get rid of those shelves.  The space is now more open and with this free table I found, it really looks like a tradesman's workspace.  There is still a pile of junk on the floor that I need to deal with, but it is still much more open than before.  If we are here for more than one more year, I may invest in an outdoor storage shed for the bikes. Having them outside but secure would free up some valuable wall space.  



Now I just have to figure out what to do with the opposite wall.  I hS an idea but the person selling her IKEA CD shelves not only didn't respond to me, but she removed the post.  It serves me right.  Earlier this week I offered to give a dresser to someone on Portage Park Freebox.  But then people started answering my listing.  I selfishly decided that $30 is better than charity.  I guess I got what I deserved.

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Thursday, November 5, 2020

Helping out with the cooking

 I came across these recipes and decided to give them a try.   This is my second attempt   They are each meant to be a main dish but I felt they complemented one another so I made them for the same meal, but more interestingly, at the same time. 


 My first attempt I tried switching back and forth.   On the second attempt, I realized that it’s easier to focus on searing the chicken first, while the pasta water boils.  If you time it right (I was slightly off) you finish searing the chicken, start the sauce while the pasta boils, and start the penne base.   In theory, you finish the penne base just in time to add the pasta.  And you can add the chicken into its sauce and let it simmer. 



 The interesting thing about cooking, especially Italian dishes is that you can make substitutions.  Which is a nice way to say “damn I forgot to get x, will y work..” Usually, it does.  For instance, no one can ducking tell if you used a shallot instead of an onion. 



 Bon App├ętit 


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Friday, October 23, 2020

sold some shelving units

 After I removed everything from the garage, I had the thought that I would see if I could sell some of the shelving units, specifically the Craftsman Corner shelf.  This is a solid item but a bit bulky and won't travel well if we move anyway.  


got $50 (I think I paid $100)
 

Surprisingly, this shelf that sold first and got a lot more responses was this one.

$30


I probably listed too low for it had quick moments of seller's remorse on both units.  But as I think about it, the garage workroom space isn't that big and it doubles as storage so I need to optimize the space.  That means finding some cabinets that I can mount on the walls to give it a cleaner look.

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Epoxy Garage project: Phase Finished

When I started this project, I tried to keep my expectations in check and not expect anything in the zip code of perfection.  I tried to mitigate common mistakes by doing my homework and reading up on best practices and also following the directions to the letter.

Unfortunately, some things are just beyond one's control.  I started painting Saturday and for a moment, I felt like I might be able to return the 1-car garage kit.  If I had a more even floor, with fewer pot marks that might have been the case.  As it turns out I was just 2 ft by 2 ft short.  But if we are being honest, the last gallon was spread too thin so I had to use the second kit anyway.  And I should have just sucked it up and done it Saturday but by that time I was tired and exhausted and I had to feed my kids who were probably wearing their welcome at my neighbor's house a little thin.



Also, I was a little defeated because my roller broke with just one small section to go.  I didn't think I had time to run to a nearby store and get another one (I did) and I really didn't want to spend the money because, after this project, I shouldn't need a roller extender anymore.


2 square feet to go, D'oh!

I finished up on Monday but because I waited a couple of days and left the sealed kit outside over several nights, it was too cold for the activator to work its magic.  In hindsight, I should have brought the kit in and kept it at room temperature and mixed it inside the warm house.  The first kit spread like butter.  The 2nd kit was thick and pasty, but I made it work.  



There is some good though. The floor definitely looks better than it did.  That horrible residue stain in the southwest corner is gone.  Some of the cracks have been sealed and are not noticeable. 

You would never know there was a black splash here

I've started to move somethings back in but it will be one more day before we can safely put the cars back.  

Costs

Rust-Oleum 301012 Wall-Surface-Repair-Products, Gray   22.97

Rust-Oleum 301012 Wall-Surface-Repair-Products, Gray   21.28

Rust-Oleum 301243 Cleaner and Degreaser, 1 Gallon      24.36

Rust-Oleum 301012 Wall-Surface-Repair-Products, Gray 22.40

Valspar Fast Prep Interior/Exterior Cleaner and Etcher (Gallon) 18.98

Rust-Oleum EpoxyShield 2-Part Tan Gloss Garage Floor Epoxy Kit (2.5 car) 111.16

Rust-Oleum EpoxyShield 2-Part Tan Gloss Garage Floor Epoxy Kit (1 car) 68.38

Purdy Golden Eagle 3-Pack 9-in x 3/8-in Knit Polyester Paint Roller Cover  9.48

Roller and extension pole  $17.20

Total = $316.21


Some of these items appear to be listed twice but I bought from different places, specifically Amazon and Lowe's.  The price for the kits was better at Lowe's as well, which makes sense since they probably sell more of them than Amazon and can give a better price.



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Saturday, October 17, 2020

Epoxy Garage project phase two

Today we paint.  At least I hope to paint.  Right now the temperature is only 51 degrees and you really want to be closer to 65.  My garage is usually a little warmer than outside, often exponentially, but still not warm enough to attempt this.  It is supposed to reach at least 63 today so hopefully, that happens and I can do this.




completed:  

  • empty garage (easier than I thought)  ✔
  • power wash it (did it myself)✔
  • patch any holes or cracks in the foundation ✔
  • clean with degreaser ✔
  • etch ✔
  • paint


In hindsight, I should have patched sooner.  There is a learning curve and while I was able to make the second box stretch more, I didn't do a great job of making one of the fillings super smooth.  (Fatigue and the lateness of the hour).


My two big worries are that I won't have enough paint and that it won't adhere properly.  There seems to be a white powdery residue from the etch which as me concerned. I don't have time to wash and wait for it to dry so I'm gonna use a broom and a leaf blower and hope for the best.  It is impossible to get a Clean Room effect anyway and I cannot imagine that other people haven't run into this problem.

My plan is to work from the back of the garage to the front and the north side to the south side.  The garage floor has break sections so if I can get the two sections where all the garage stuff lives and the one part where the cars are parked, I could theoretically do the last section another time.  I'm really hoping that it doesn't come to that.  A friend who did this herself last month came up with a brilliant suggestion.  Instead of me buying two 2-car garage kits, I bought one 2-car and one 1-car kit.  This should be enough.

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Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Epoxy Garage project phase one

 One of the pipedream projects I have on my list is epoxy the garage floor.  In a perfect world, I'd have a cool design, like maybe the Bears logo or just a cool color combo.  In reality, I would go with a simple tan color for this garage since it isn't likely to be our forever house.

I might have missed the window to do it this year, but I'm slightly hopeful now that an opportunity has presented itself.  Nightingale has to go visit her sister for a family project and that means her car will be gone all weekend.  It would have been better last weekend weatherwise, but then again who wants to paint a garage floor when the weather is so beautiful.  

There are two things that I need to figure out first to see if it is worth doing.  First, I have a crack to fill.  There are lots of small cracks that the epoxy will mask, but the bigger ones do require patching.  


Second, I have this strange residue in one corner.  It looks like something spilled and then someone left a cardboard box on it for years and then finally ripped up the cardboard with just a thin layer of paper left behind.  Over the years I half heartedly tried to remove it with varying degrees of luck.  I swear I found something once that dissolved it but had to get going to work, forgot about it and now it's gone from my memory of what I used.



If I cannot get the majority of it off, it doesn't make sense to paint because the epoxy won't adhere properly.  I have been making progress with paint spirits and elbow grease so we shall see.  I'm hoping I can get it to a point where a good power washing will remove all the the microscopic remains.  

 The typical process is more or less the following:

  • empty garage (easiest to do when at least one car is out of the picture)
  • power wash it (might hire pro for that)
  • patch any holes or cracks in the foundation
  • clean with degreaser
  • etch
  • paint


All with a not insignificant amount of time in between.  Since this is a first go and not our forever home, I've given myself permission to do only a decent job i.e. not F it up for the next owner.  So I won't be doing two coats of epoxy and no clear coat.  

Today's I'm going to patch the cracks and let it set for two days.  According to the instructions, you typically patch and then as soon as the patch has set, you clean, etch and paint.  But I want to see how much one container of patching compound gets me so that I can decide if I need to order more or not.   

If the patching looks good and the strange residue is removed, I'll empty the garage on Thursday after Nightingale leaves for work.  I can have a crew come and power wash it.  That means I can do the degreasing and maybe the etching on Friday.  Unfortuantely, Moose and Squirrel are home from school on Friday, but luckily, they are friends with the kids down the street so I can send them there for a few hours.  

That means I should be able to start painting on Saturday.  It's typically 24 hours before you can walk on it and 72 before you can put things back including your car.  Nightingale gets back Sunday afternoon evening but a day or two in the driveway won't kill us.  

On another note:   On this day 6 years ago, I sold my condo.  And they money that went to that mortgage started going to daycare.


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Tuesday, September 29, 2020

September challenge

Seemed a good goal at the time: For the month of September, I decided I would do 10 pushups and one 1-minute plank each day.  I decided this on Sept 3 so I had some catching up to do.  I found that the first day or two were rusty, and it was never a milk run, but if I did them with consistency, it wasn't too hard.


  Of course I'd miss a day or two and then have to make them up.  I don't know why I decided making them up was something I needed to do, but I did.  If I skipped two days, like on the weekend for instance, I would make one missed set up each day.

For instance I skipped Friday, did Saturday's set thinking I was making up for Friday but didn't get around to the second set.  Skipped Sunday as well.  It was easier to count Saturday's for Friday and just say I'm two behind on Monday.  So I did Monday's set.  Wasn't feeling it so I waited until today to do 3 sets because we are running out of September.  

I'm not sure I will continue this in October.  

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Bears are 51% pretenders 49% Contenders:  If I'm being honest, I am one of the more apologetic Bears fans out there.  But even I have had my doubts about this season.  First Detroit gifted us a win.  Then we barely held on to win against the Giants.  I really thought Atlanta was gonna slaughter us, or best case we'd get some garbage touchdowns late that would make the score look closer than the game really was.

I'm always curious to see what season this will be.  My first season as a Bears fan I saw them go 9-7 and miss the playoffs because of a loss to Atlanta.  I got to see that season again in 2008.  I really thought this was gonna be the repeat of 2002 when they won their first two games then tanked the rest of the season.  Or since we are in a global pandemic, we might do like 2001 and have a magical season that ends with a playoff loss to a more real team.  


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