Saturday, October 11, 2014

Renovation Fever

It's the time of year when we feverishly work on the cabins to renovate and update, paint and do some makeovers.  I had a goal in mind of painting the outside of at least two cabins while the weather was still nice.  The goal would have been accomplished if we hadn't had so many unexpected setbacks.  The first time we set up all our paraphernalia for painting,  our paint sprayer tip malfunctioned and we had to quit till we could order some parts.

The second time was when Joanna and I began painting cabin 4 one sunny day in August.  We had installed the new parts into the paint sprayer and all was well.  With great anticipation we started again on our project.  After completing one end, we ran out of the paint we had been using before and opened a new five gallon container.   As we were mixing it in preparation for putting some in the paint sprayer container,  we noticed it was the wrong color.  Uh oh.  We had recently driven eight hours round trip to Menards in Intl. Falls to pick up these five, five gallon pails of paint so I would have plenty on hand.  For some reason, the computer spit out the wrong mix for our color this time.  So, we had to shut our operation down and wait till we could go back down to exchange the paint for the right color.

Once we got the paint exchanged it was near the end of September and I was able to find two days in a row where the weather was above 36 degrees and it wasn't raining.  Again Joanna and I donned our painting clothes and with great determination gathered all the needed tools and materials to start painting cabin 4.  We knew we had a working paint sprayer and we knew we had the right color in the pails.  But when I poured the new paint into the paint sprayer container, it looked much thicker than the paint I had previously been using.  With a bit of trepidation, we began spraying paint on the cabin.  It worked well for about ten minutes, then nothing would come out of the sprayer.  We worked and worked with it, trying to clean the tip.  Still nothing.  My thought was that the paint was too thick.  Since it was latex paint, I thinned it down with some water.  In cooking pancakes, I know about what consistency the batter needs to be in order to make good pancakes.  So, I did the same with the paint and thinned it till it seemed right.  Still the sprayer would not allow the paint to come through.

Finally I gave up trying to use the sprayer and set about cleaning it up with warm water.  I told Joanna we'd just have to paint it all by hand.  She let out a groan knowing what a job that would be and how much longer it would take us.  But in the process of cleaning the paint tip with warm water, it started working again.  With jubilation , I told Joanna we were back in business.  We were barely able to finish the brown color on the cabin before the sun set that day.  Two very tired ladies were thankful the job was finally done.   We'll have to save the trim till next spring, along with cabin 6 which we had also hoped to paint.

The inside of cabin 4 looks a lot different too because it now has all new carpet in the two larger bedrooms, the hallways and the living room/dining area.  What a nice change.

You may ask, "Where was John and what was HE doing?"  Well, in addition to helping us get set up to paint and trying to help fix the sprayer and paint problem,  he was involved in another huge project.  Cabin 7, our small cabin has been in dire need of some major renovation.  The added on bathroom roof was rotten and threatening to fall apart.  John felt it would be best to just tear it all down and put the new bathroom inside the cabin itself to eliminate problems of one part not heaving with the other during the winter months.  With lots of thought, we figured a way to have one larger bedroom with a queen bed and room for a single bed if needed, another small single bedroom and the bathroom.  That way we can still sleep three to four people.  There was an added blessing to tearing down the old bathroom.  Right under the joint where the bathroom was attached to the cabin, John found a dead skunk that had been the cause for a terrible smell in the cabin all summer.  We are finally free of that odor.  Yay!!

After John completed the arduous task of removing the old bathroom, he started in on the next major step which was digging out under the cabin and jacking it up higher.  In order to accomplish that he had to first remove the deck using the backhoe.  I don't know what we would do without that most useful piece of equipment.  He  then used blue rock and cement pads to help it maintain its new elevated position.  What a job that was!  I know he was very relieved when that part was completed.

Now we are working inside putting up a wall for the bathroom, putting up sheetrock, painting, laying new flooring in the bathroom, and carpet in the bedrooms.  It should look pretty nice at the end of it all.  Only the best for our guests!!  :)