Hamlet Update July 27, 2005 â€“ Kitchen NOT done My oh my, July will end without having a finished kitchen. But we DO love the kitchen island now: It doesnâ€™t look it, but itâ€™s about 5 feet long. We lost one week in our schedule just because we realized the color of floor tile weâ€™d picked out was not a good match for the kitchen. That issue discovered at the dedicated persistence of Mr. Rodger and the frustration of Mr. Mark because Rodger wanted to buy one case of the tiles to make â€œsureâ€ the color matched and Mark was the one who had to â€œprocureâ€ them. Procuring them turned out to be a real hassle. Do NOT go to Trinity Carpets here in Portland. They have NO business savvy about getting anything done. Our first clue should have been that one must have an â€œappointmentâ€ to meet with a salesperson. Oh well, anyway, they agreed to fax in one order of the selected â€œs-Tile AvantGard Cocoâ€ 18 x 18 floor tiles to the distributor, Cronin Company out on Swan Island. This was 2:30 pm, and I said it will take me 30 minutes to get there, Mr. Trinity Salesman, do you think your fax will be done by then? â€œOh sure, and they probably close up about 4:30 so youâ€™d better get going.â€ Preparing for a simple pick-up, I took the dog along even though the temp was about 85. Well, of course, the wholesaler Cronin had nothing for me when I got there and wouldnâ€™t have had I not made several calls back to Trinity finally reaching a sales manager who actually took the issue on and processed the order. I had to then ask â€œs-Tileâ€ contact Judy to please get the order immediately to Croninâ€¦â€¦. She did. Although they close at 5:00 PM, and Iâ€™d watched the warehouse staff stream out, at 5:04 here comes out one last worker with a case of tile calling my name. Whew! Oh, by the way, this also meant I had to keep the dog cool for the 2 hours we were out. Luckily the dredged Willamette Slough (for unloading ships) was close and he had to swim in some murky water followed by a rinse at home. Well the point of that story was that upon arriving home, Rodger was there and I put the tiles on the floor. He immediately pronounced theyâ€™re too brown. After my afternoon, I wasnâ€™t ready to hear thatâ€¦â€¦â€¦â€¦..but begrudgingly, had to admit, they werenâ€™t right. Well, the next day, Trinity wouldnâ€™t take them back so weâ€™re stuck with 5 tiles. So. We spent last weekend researching about every Tile wholesaler here, and there ARE a few in this Clay soaked country. We brought samples home from four places plus borrowed samples from neighbor-designer Lisa and spent an evening staring at the floor. Good thing no one got â€œstonedâ€, perhaps we would never have made a decision. I SWEAR, just a couple more tile samples and we could have finished the whole floor. The GOOD thing is Dave & Deborah, both so very tuned into style and color both agreed strongly on the AvantGard Tile, but a different color, â€œVERTâ€ . . . . a dark tile. So, today, not one hour ago, all of the supplies are now ordered from Color Tile and we will pick it all up Thursday morning at Cronin Company. Dave will loan us his wet saw and big level, then we must pick up screws, tape, etcâ€¦â€¦â€¦..and BEGIN. Once again, a â€œto-doâ€ list is growing: Hayes Cabinets will hopefully come in before we get the floor down to spend an entire day finishing up work and hopefully, stabilizing the island a little more. We must get everything out of the dining room, move the fridge and dishwasher, pick up supplies. Weâ€™ll begin by laying down mortarboard onto a layer of thin-set mortar thatâ€™s been troweled out onto the woodern subfloor. We then fill in cracks, tape, and ensure itâ€™s all level. Later in the weekend then, we can begin to tile. Hope we things level and centered. Does the dog care? This dog Mac has discovered what a sprinkler can do for him. He has NO power to help himself when faced with water coming out of a metal object, but I admit, he looks like heâ€™s having fun: I mean lots-o-fun: he goes back and back and back to that waterâ€¦.. Iâ€™m afraid weâ€™ll have to tie him up once serious irrigation begins later this week. Matter of fact, today and tomorrow temps will reach 90 and the land is seriously drying out. The new lettuce coming up is requiring a sprinkle about 3 times a day and the rest of the garden every two days at least until Friday. BUTâ€¦â€¦â€¦weâ€™re sure enjoying the lettuce. Nothing like a salad with lettuce just clipped out of the garden: And even though the garden isnâ€™t even entirely planted this year because of the kitchen work, some nice pics are coming out of there. We had a great sunset one night and Rodger tried to capture all the colors. Not sure a small size pic will show you the colors, but a bug just happened to be flying in front of the flash: But one thing we DO have growing, CORN is doing well. Hereâ€™s another sunset shot. The corn is now about 5 feet tall and should top out about 8 feet (Variety: Golden Jubilee): The Catalpa tree produces a tree full of orchid like fragrant blooms every year: On the down side, we can now show what our former forested 3 acres adjoining the one side of the house now looks like thanks to Mr. Ed: Pretty desolate for a Portland location, eh? As I write this, I hear Ed out in that field with a running chain saw. I have NO idea whatâ€™s let for this guy to cut. Hey! I almost forgot to mentionâ€¦â€¦â€¦â€¦. We actually bought groceries and ran the cook-top and oven through a little test. Rodger made a Chicken Pot Pie. It is delicious and interesting. It has less than two teaspoons of our dried thyme and that is a pleasant addition. The Pie Crust cooked well in our oven. Rodger also made Potatoes Au Gratin and I must say, I claim theyâ€™re the best Iâ€™ve ever eaten but he doesnâ€™t agree. Mark made some Pork Chops and when half-way through the recipe realized this was supposed to be a layered oven creation with potatoes in the middle. So, he modified the thing and ended up with some delicious pork chops that had some browned onion-garlic sauce on top. THE OVEN cooked things beautifully. We treated ourselves by baking a raspberry dish inside Phyllo dough (we bought this at Trader Joeâ€™s) and once again, the oven produced beautiful, crisp, dough â€¦..once we turned on the convection fan that last 3 minutes, you could watch the crust brown. Oh well. Thatâ€™s it, dear diaryâ€¦â€¦â€¦â€¦â€¦. Will we succeed on Flooring?
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