We flew back from Italy on January 5 and was on the farm for 10 days before returning to San Mateo on the 15th.
After light rail from the airport and a walk down to the ferry dock, fortunately while it wasn’t raining, Michael picked us up in Bainbridge about 11 and we were on the farm before midnight….but had to wander for awhile and did not get to bed until about 1:30…. after exploring the house, and dealing with a crisis of frozen water line to the trailer.
The next day started with another crisis….I won’t go into what I think was the series of problems and miscommunications that led to it, but there were three places on outside walls where which we did not intend to have covered with drywall, but did not get the OSB or cement board on them when we left in the fall and because of all the moisture that was added when the dry wall was “mudded” black mold grew behind the insulation. Randy had pulled out all the insulation in those three places before we arrived and treated one with vinegar and gave us some anti mildew primer to paint the surfaces. We went to Home Depot that afternoon and the woman in the paint department recommended a spray even better than vinegar and the next day we treated those other two areas and proceeded to prime them and then cut new insulation as we threw away the old insulation as we suspected it was infiltrated with mildew.
Meanwhile, Michael had begun to paint the outside of the house, but had not gotten very far because of wet and cold. We asked him to switch to focusing on priming/sealing the drywall and particular get the ceiling done over the kitchen as we expected the cabinets to come in soon.
At Home Depot, we also picked up ten pieces of cement board, though estimated we needed about 30 to do the three bathrooms, but there is just so much weight you can put in the back of an old Volvo stationwagon. Over the week, we went back and forth over which would be the best bathroom to get finished first, but there were various reasons to not proceed with all of them, so none got done. We also bought some white ceiling paint.
By Friday, Michael had finished priming the ceiling over the kitchen, and proceeded with painting it with the ceiling paint and was able to take the masking off the beams so we could actually see what it looked like. I am sorry I did not take more pictures.
On Saturday, the cabinet installers came and began the installation, but the plumbers had put the pipes for the kitchen sink off to one side rather than centered behind the sink and they needed to stop to come back another day after the pipes were moved. The pipes in the slab for the center island were also not quite in the right place but we just changed the configuration of the cabinets to make it work. Because they were not there on Sunday as planned, Michael was able to finish priming the living room ceiling.
On Tuesday, Ian from Peninsula Heat came to turn on the radiant heat floors, but then came to a stopping point when he thought he didn’t have the electric line he needed.
On Wednesday, the plumbers came and moved the lines for the kitchen sink and added lines for two more showers. On Thursday, the electrician came and said that the line for the heating was there and he spoke with him on the phone to verify it….don’t know if they came back yet to finish turning it on.
On Thursday morning, the kitchen appliances arrived that I had ordered last summer ….thinking the kitchen would be finished in September of October: induction range, microwave hood, refrigerator and dishwasher.
All week, Randy tried to find time to finish the installation of the front door, but between other jobs and “putting out fires” he never had the chance….maybe next week.
The biggest disappointment of the week was seeing the windows that had come from Topsider. When I asked for woodclad windows, I expected wood that could be left natural….and probably was already stained or sealed. Instead they had flimsy pine molding on the inside that looks like it was intended to be painted. This is on top of the fixed paned windows that were sent months ago that didn’t even have that….they just needed to be “stepped in” by the construction crew which of course added a huge expense for me. All in all, I have been very disappointed with my treatment by Topsider Homes and would not recommend them to anyone….though I do like my octagon house.