House Excavations, green border
art family home museums projects work in progress

Reno Update: Kitchen Caulking, Motorcycle Print, Stair Treads

You may be able to tell from the title of this blog post that I’m too tired to think of anything clever, like I did for last week’s post.

House renovation tasks continue, along with packing and cleaning. It’s a TON of work getting a house ready for sale.

This morning, I scrubbed the bathtub thoroughly with Bar Keeper’s Friend in order to remove some stains. This afternoon, I mowed the lawn because regular maintenance tasks can’t be ignored while we are working on other projects.

Our home renovation task that started yesterday and was finished this morning was cleaning the old caulking from around the kitchen sink and recaulking it. I did the cleaning; Erik did the new caulking.

Blue tape masking off the top and bottom of the backsplash tile as Erik recaulks around the kitchen sink. August 14, 2022.
Blue tape masking off the top and bottom of the backsplash tile as Erik recaulks around the kitchen sink. August 14, 2022.

Erik is very particular about every home improvement project he takes on, so he completely taped off the backsplash tile he wanted to recaulk so that he would get a nice, even caulking line. His technique worked very well.

A section of the kitchen tile that's been recaulked. August 14, 2022.
A section of the kitchen tile that’s been recaulked. August 14, 2022.

After finishing this relatively easy task, it was satisfying to remove a card from our corkboard of to-do list items.

Another job that was finished in the last couple of weeks was one we didn’t expect, and it was totally my fault.

As I was packing our framed art into the car, I accidentally broke the glass on my husband’s framed print from The Art of the Motorcycle exhibit at the Guggenheim in Las Vegas.

Framed print from The Art of the Motorcycle exhibit at the Guggenheim Museum in Las Vegas featuring the American flag-themed Harley-Davidson chopper from the movie Easy Rider. The glass is cracked. July 6, 2022.
Framed print from The Art of the Motorcycle exhibit at the Guggenheim Museum in Las Vegas featuring the American flag-themed Harley-Davidson chopper from the movie Easy Rider. The glass is cracked. July 6, 2022.

 

Close-up of cracked glass on The Art of the Motorcycle print. July 6, 2022.
Close-up of cracked glass on The Art of the Motorcycle print. July 6, 2022.

The glass on this print was broken before and we had it replaced by Tony Armagost at Tony’s First Avenue Custom Framing in Little Falls. Tony’s shop is very cool with its fun interior wall colors and art hanging everywhere. Plus, we enjoy trading gossip with Tony, so we took it back to him for repair.

He told us that the metal frame on the print flexes too much, which makes it easy for the glass to break. Though he normally doesn’t recommend Plexiglas for his framing projects and doesn’t carry it in the shop, he did think it was a good idea for this print. He ordered the Plex from Little Falls Glass. When the Plex was ready, Erik picked it up and took it to Tony so he could reassemble the frame for us. (Thanks, Tony!)

Here’s what it looks like now:

Framed print from The Art of the Motorcycle exhibit at the Guggenheim Museum in Las Vegas featuring the American flag-themed Harley-Davidson chopper from the movie Easy Rider. The broken glass has been replaced by Plexiglas. August 1, 2022.
Framed print from The Art of the Motorcycle exhibit at the Guggenheim Museum in Las Vegas featuring the American flag-themed Harley-Davidson chopper from the movie Easy Rider. The broken glass has been replaced by Plexiglas. August 1, 2022.

Our other major project for the past week was painting the stair treads for both the upstairs staircase and the basement staircase. This took some careful planning because we wouldn’t be able to access the upstairs, where my office is, or the basement while the paint dried. Here’s how we managed it.

Upstairs stair treads in barn red with white risers before repainting. January 14, 2022.
Upstairs stair treads in barn red with white risers before repainting. January 14, 2022.

Last weekend, we brought everything down that we needed from upstairs, including my work electronics, and Erik painted the stair treads on Saturday. This was actually a repainting. We had a dark, barn red on the treads and wanted to keep the same basic color. On Sunday, we left the house for three days for a work conference. When we got back, the stairs were dry. Amazing how that works, isn’t it?

Upstairs stair treads repainted in barn red with white risers. August 7, 2022.
Upstairs stair treads repainted in barn red with white risers. August 7, 2022.

We didn’t have a trip planned for the basement stairs, so we made sure to get our laundry done before Erik painted the treads. (Our washer and dryer are in the basement.) Then we just avoided the stairs for a day or so, until the manufacturer’s instructions indicated we could walk on the paint.

Basement staircase after the walls have been painted white. The staircase is wood with overspray of white paint. August 4, 2022.
Basement staircase after the walls have been painted white. The staircase is wood with overspray of white paint. August 4, 2022.

We used the same red for the basement stairs as for the upstairs staircase. This staircase had never been painted before and we love the transformation. Because both staircases are in the center of the house, slightly offset from each other, I feel like we have a red spine anchoring the central core of the house.

Basement staircase with barn red treads and white walls. August 12, 2022.
Basement staircase with barn red treads and white walls. August 12, 2022.

Sometimes it feels slow-going, but progress is being made.

Thoughtful comments welcome.