Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Year of Work

Well it's been a little over a year since my last post. But I promise it is not without reason! Although the work load alone was enough to keep us both busy, I no longer had a card reader to get the pictures off of my camera! See? I think that's a pretty good reason. So, thanks dad for the new card reader :) And now, without further ado...Some Christmas pictures from last year (2009) just in time for Christmas this year :)

This next picture is our neighbors across the street...pretty:)

This past summer we built a new fence. If you don't remember our fence from before, here's a few reminders...

This is our fence when we bought the house...lovely.

Then, as if it couldn't get any better, Tulsa had a massive ice storm which further ruined the fence...if you could call it a fence.

So we rented a bobcat and a dumbster to tear down what was left of the fence and pull out the trees in the fence line.

Which brings us to this summer...The sad news is my computer got a virus and I lost the photos of the actual fence building. But, at least I can show the almost final product! (it still needs the cap put on the top of the fence line but you can get the picture).

Tucker loves his new back yard!

But if we're going to be true to the timeline, we would have to interject a few pictures in the middle of our fence-building pictures. You see, we had to take a break from building the fence when our water line broke this past winter! And since you can't exactly tell where the crack is have to do some digging. But, do we hire someone to fix it? Nope! Time to rent some more equipment!
We decided to just replace the whole line from the meter by the street all the way to the house. Our friend Andrew wanted to get in on the bobcat action.

But we no longer have a metal water line to freeze in the winter :)

This summer we also tackled building a shed (we had to get some stuff outside of the house so we could finish tearing it apart)!
First came pouring a concrete pad...luckily we had some help from our neighbor Chris!

I let him take a break every now and then :)

Time to sign off on the job!

I think Tucker was upset that we didn't let him sign earlier with the rest of us. That night he added his signature.

Time to frame it up!

Drum roll please.... Isn't it the cutest shed you've ever seen! Designed and built by my talented husband (he said if he ever build another he'll actually have drawings to make the materials work out and learn).

With the cold weather coming, it was time to move the work inside. We're currently working on the front room/living room and the stairway. I already have some great pictures but I think I'll wait and post those with the finished product pictures...which means you'll have to tune in next time! Mua-ha-ha! Me and my evil plots :) Ta ta for now!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The unveiling of the nearly complete upstairs bedroom!

Ok, so this time it's been a REEEALLY long time since I posted so I'm just going to jump right in....when we last spoke, we had just finished insulating and just started sheet rocking...

Ta daaaa......Completed sheet rock. As you can see it has already been mudded. Which means....

...Time for sanding...which is apparently a very dirty job. I think he gets dirtier than necessary to show how hard he's working. You know, like a woman throwing flour on herself while cooking. Anyway...

Here we have just primed the walls. He says it's easier to see bumps in the sheet rock/mud if it's all the same color.

Sanding the floors! This was really exciting to finally get to test our theory that these floors COULD BE restored. Until now, they were completely covered in stain, paint, dirt & dust...

See the difference? It's amazing what sanding can do....Now it's time to paint the walls. I picked a pretty, calm blue.

See, I'm doing work. Painting and staining are my specialties. Giles' specialties are....everything else :)

And now....the moment we've all been waiting for...the unveiling of the nearly complete upstairs bedroom....drum roll please....

We've moved into this room (from across the hall in the incomplete master bedroom where we were staying). It's nice to finally be able to walk around without flip-flops! We love this room. We also installed dimmer switches for the lighting so it feels very cozy. All that is lacking is finishing the trim around the walkway between the bedroom area and the office area and the trim around the windows in the office area.
We have a joke between us...we finish out every sentence concerning our house with "someday." Our someday is getting closer everyday...

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Why'd the chicken cross the road....seriously, why?

You thought I was kidding.....but no! Our neighbor from across the street keeps chickens (for what reason I'm not exactly sure) but as Giles and I were resting on our porch last Saturday, here it comes....from across the road (I tried to ask him why he did it but he pleaded the 5th).

Here he is on his way back home. Giles is a skilled chicken whisperer and caught him with little to no trouble.

Ok...Here's what what has transpired with the house...

This is a shot inside our return air vent of how Giles re-routed our wiring to get it to where it needed to be to connect to the box downstairs.

Here's a shot at some of the new wiring. Giles says it's "pretty." I think if you are calling Romex "pretty" you've been working too long and need to get some fresh air. But I guess even I can appreciate the aesthetics of it compared to the jimmy rigged death trap that preceded it...

Another "pretty" wiring shot.

Insulation! This will save us tons of money (seeing as our house currently has NO insulation) AND hopefully get us a nice tax credit ;)

Yes! The first piece of sheet rock! We're really on our way now! And in all seriousness, I think putting up 12 foot peices of sheet rock on the ceiling BY YOURSELF should be an olympic event...Giles gets the Gold, Silver AND Bronze. I'll have to take a picture of the "wooden helper" he constructed to hold up one end of the sheet rock while he's screwing in the other you see why I call him MacGyver?

Ta ta for now! Talk to ya soon!

Friday, May 1, 2009

More Fun Finds....and Work

Here's some interesting things we found since we last spoke :)

I found another one of these on the internet and they called it a "World War II Bond Bread Advertising Airplane Ink Pen Blotter" some people refer to them as "advertising cards." Whatever they are, pretty neat huh?

This is an antique key we found by a small miracle. It had apparently been hanging out in our backyard for who knows how long. Well, one weekend we were cleaning out our backyard some more (picking up the extra rocks, sticks, dirt etc left from years past and from the ice storm) after we had a trailer full, we headed off to the dump to unload it all. We arrive at the dump (and to add to the fun, it's now raining) and my husband is about to start shoveling it all from the trailer to the bin at the dump when he notices a small, mud covered key laying on top of some dirt in our trailer. IMAGINE THE ODDS! If that key had been anywhere else in that trailer except for the very top, where he HAPPEND to glance over, it might be lost forever! THE DRAMA...THE TRAGEDY....but I onto the work!

This is a photo showing how the eves on the side of the house are sagging and pulling up the beams in the ceiling. How do you pull them down? Well obviously with a come-along and a few sturdy screws.

See? It worked! The boards are now back together! Sweet success!

Now, how do you do the same thing when there is no beam directly below the ceiling beam to brace onto and pull it down? Well, you create one of these things shown above (partially my idea by the way).

And when that doesn't create enough pulling power but you still have inches to go? You create pushin power by strapping a jack to the top and pushing it down. Of course!

We now also have a framed in future bathroom which will join and be shared by these two bedrooms. Isn't it beautiful?!

Seen from the other bedroom.

And now, some lovely photos of our new front flower beds that we planted last weekend. We wanted to give the front a little color but didn't want to plant heavy shrubs etc since we will be redoing the porch in the near future. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Honey Beez and Taxes

We've finally completed the demo in our upstairs bedrooms. However, not without a few "incidents."

As I was doing some wall demo and knocking down the plaster, I could see something through the lath boards. I began to pull the lath boards off one by one to get a better view of what the thing was. As I pulled each lath board off, the thing would continue up under the next and I just kept pulling and pulling until I got to the top of the wall. It was a giant rotted BEE HIVE. Weird! Well, we thought that was that...until we started the demo above the window next to the bee hive. LAYERS OF HONEY COMB!

We were also once again amazed at the quality craftmanship of the previous home owners. This is apparently a wall...on top of a wall.

Also, Giles informed me that this is not the proper way to put together a ceiling.

But even better was the ceiling mold we found under that bang up ceiling job (we assume the mold is the reason for the ceiling work).

But we finally got all of the ceiling torn out.

Also, while Giles was patching up the floor (where we tore out the door to make the arch ways)Giles found something under one of the old floor boards.

This is a better photo of what we found. The one we found is a little more scuffed up. We couldn't quite make out what the token said other than "Oklahoma" on one side and "For Old Age Assitance" on the other side. So when I got to work, I googled the phrase "For Old Age Assitance" and there were several responses indicating it was an old Tax Token. Here's what I found out:
Merchants had to pay sales tax to the state on the total amount of sales made by the merchant during each day’s sales. You can imagine that if the sales tax rate is 3% and a child buys a 10c piece of candy there is no way to collect the three-tenths of one cent. If you rounded down that meant that the merchant could not collect anything for the tax. If you rounded up the state was gaining 7 tenths of a cent on every 10 cent sale. You can see that if the merchant sold 100 pieces of candy he was loosing 30 cents a day in tax revenues to the state, so the token was born. This allowed the merchant to take 11 cents for the first piece of candy and give change back in mills. The next time you wanted to buy a 10c candy you could present the merchant with the 10c and a token and complete the transaction. This allowed the merchant to collect the sales tax on each transaction.

A mill is 1/1000th of a dollar or a tenth of a cent. As you can imagine, people did not like having to carry a second set of coins, and to further complicate matters, different states issued different tax tokens. 1 and 5 mills are the most common denominations, but other denominations include: 1/5 cent, 1 1/2 mills, and "Tax on 10c or less."

There are over 500 different sales tax tokens that can be collected from 13 commonly issued states. I include Ohio stamps because most of the collectors do to. There is also anti-sales tax token memorabilia from many other states to collect. Most tokens are inexpensive and fairly easy to come by. All in all over a billion sales tax tokens are estimated to have been produced. Most coin dealers have no idea what to charge for these tokens, Many tax tokens are quite common, and can often be found in coin dealer "junk boxes" for as little as 10 cents. Others tokens are known to be much scarcer, however they too sometimes show up in “junk boxes” from time to time. A few, such as the New Mexico 5 mill black fiber are truly rare, and worth up to $100. There are also much sought after pattern tokens made by the manufacturers to win the contracts for minting from the states that issued them.

State issued sales tax tokens vary widely. Copper, brass, paper, cardboard, fiber, aluminum, zinc, plastic and even wood were used. Many were colored. The language ranged from Arizona's practical: "to make change for correct sales tax," to blunt in Louisiana: "Public Welfare Tax Token" and Oklahoma: "For Old Age Assistance." Perhaps my favorite is Missouri’s second generation Milk-Cap token. “… helping to pay for old age pensions, support of public schools, care of poor insane and tebercular patients in state hospitals and relief of needy unemployed in the state of Missouri.”

On the reverse side it says “Oklahoma Consumers Tax”

I think this is the one we have:

308.OK-5#7,S-5 Oklahoma Consumers Tax for Old Age Assistance.AL,RD,23mm,HAM. 1 mill,XF $2,UNC $8.00

(the AL stands for aluminum and the HAM “holed as made”)