28 March 2009

The tortoise takes over - slow but steady

With just a two weeks left, I've hit that uncomfortable stage of pregnancy where everything I do takes great effort. Half the time I feel like I'm tied to a lead cannon ball and it's only a matter of time before I'm thrown overboard to Davy Jones' Locker.

Nonetheless, I'm still helping Kevin with the basement tiling. We made some good progress last weekend. Savannah's bedroom is now completely tiled as is the guest bedroom and much of the hallway and bathroom. All we have left now is the rest of the hallway (and then the grouting and caulking and trim work and paint touch ups...).

Last Sunday I only helped tile until the afternoon then Savannah and I went off to experience Maple Sugaring Sunday in upstate New York. There's a wonderful sap shack near us called Woodview Sugarbush. They use both the vacuum extraction and galvanized metal bucket methods of tapping. Savannah was impressed to see and taste all the maple syrup they make. My favorite is always spending time in the sugar shack as the sap is boiling down. It's better than any facial you could receive in a spa as the water vapors fill the air and moisturize your skin with the sweet aromatherapy of maple syrup. I brought back a gallon of dark maple syrup for Kevin and when he saw the sticker price for it, his only comment was, "I would've bought three." (I'd like to see him carry three gallons of maple syrup down a steep hill with Savannah a half mile to the car...)

I was hoping to grout Savannah's bedroom myself this week after finishing one more book but everyone tried to convince me to wait for the weekend since they say grouting is better done with two people. Unfortunately, sometimes the best way to get me to do something is to tell me I can't do it (without giving me a very good reason why). So, on Friday afternoon I grouted the guest bedroom myself. It went very well for the floor, not so well for my lower back and heart burn.

Close up of the dried grout on the tiles.

The guest bedroom (otherwise known as my project room) all tiled and grouted. There is still a small amount of hazing on the floor but it will mop up easily once the grout is dry enough. I have sponge-cleaned it twice and used a dry rag to polish the tiles but didn't get everything.

Today I grouted Savannah's bedroom with similar results (ie nasty heart burn, great looking floor) while Kevin worked on solving a plumbing problem.

Here's a close-up of the grouting in Savannah's room, not yet dry. The lot of tiles we used for her room was slightly different - a brighter gold, shinier, and slightly larger - but we had enough of the lot to complete her room.

A view of Savannah's room with the grouted tiles (and hazing on the floor) from her closet.

My body has had enough of grouting for now so tomorrow I tackle the trim in the guestroom and Savannah's room. I should be able to do the trim work myself. Kevin has a great table saw that makes perfect angle cuts and one of the things I'm actually good at is using it. (Somehow I've missed the basics in nailing and screwing wood in a square frame and often have difficulty with stripping screws because I don't drill a pilot hole large enough or I choose the wrong nail for the job so my nails end up bent or splitting my perfectly cut wood... I'll learn eventually though!)

All the time spent on my hands and knees in the past two days is actually good for baby's positioning so I can try to prevent back labor but bending over like that gives me terribly painful gastroesophageal reflux that is frequently associated with late pregnancy. I sympathize with anyone who suffers from GERD.

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