February 26, 2009

Pocket Door (IN!)

Filed under: cats,home improvement — origamifreak @ 8:34 pm
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Tonight I came home from water aerobics to a nice surprise:


(Note the Senior Supervisor.  He disapproves of doors.)

It opens, to reveal…


A bathroom!  Woo-hoo!

This is what it looks like from the other side:


What I LOVE is that it exactly matches my existing doors.  Perfectly.  And so will my new bifold closet doors, which “Bob” also picked out.  “Bob” is good that way.

Here’s a closer shot of the Senior Supervisor on the job:


February 24, 2009

Pocket Door

Filed under: cats,home improvement — origamifreak @ 11:13 am

The extra two windows are going in after the wall is put back together.  The hole for the pocket door has been cut and framed out, and an electrical cable moved.

Bedroom side:


Bathroom side:


Note the Supervisor, inspecting the new threshold.  Most of the time cats see doors close, but I bet they don’t often get to see them CREATED, right out of walls!

The Homeowner got frustrated this weekend and flipped around the bottom stair tread and wrote a grouchy message on it:


At least it’s not unsafe, anymore.  She was concerned about stepping down on the short tread and twisting her ankle.  That’s all she’d need, in addition to the existing arthritic knee!

February 23, 2009

New BMI = 45.98

Filed under: food,health,technology — origamifreak @ 7:57 am

Still pushing it down.

My recent history all-time low BMI when I started this in May 2007 (BMI = 52.56) was 45.42 in October 2007, so I’m getting close to breaking new ground.  When that happens I’ll go back to posting according to my milestones:

  • increments of 10 lbs lost total
  • 5% increments of lbs lost total
  • BMI category
  • 5% removed net since the last net 5% removed (this last one is key, because it’s the only milestone that is spaced according to relative difficulty at each stage)

I’m actually equivalent to the last milestone reached in October 07.  The next milestone is a 5% net, and will happen when I hit BMI = 45.07

Between October 07 and when the reflux hit me in December 08 I’d gone back up to BMI = 51.09.

Used the new elliptical machine Saturday (152 BPM on the cardio program) and Sunday (160 BPM on the interval program).

It also helps when you don’t feel much like eating…

February 21, 2009

Three steps forward, and one step back

Filed under: cats,home improvement,technology — origamifreak @ 12:56 pm
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Last week we had a really windy, rainy day.  I got an ominous call while at work: “Your bedroom windows are leaking.  What do you want me to do about it?”

Apparently “Bob” had come in for the day and noticed a puddle on the luan under my bedroom windows (water stains, now):


He opened up the wall to find that there was no weather sheathing between the siding and the foam layer.  He also later asked around from people in the profession when the house was built in 1987 (by the Army), and found out that none of them have sheathing beyond 4 feet from any corner.  So this is due to cheap construction.  Although I’m kind-of impatient to see my floor start going in, I’m also quite glad we found this out before it did.

So the windows had to come out.  He replaced them with nice vinyl ones (mullion strips are on order), but they’re apparently slightly smaller than the originals.  I pitched a small fit because these windows face the lake, and that view is one of the reasons I bought the place.  I said if I had to have *smaller* windows, then by Gawd I was going to have *more* windows, to make up for it.

Being the accomodating individual he is, “Bob” procured two more, and has been framing out where they will go.  Basically that entire side of the room will be all windows.  Which I imagine the cats will appreciate:


While we’re at it, and since that room is functionally my master bedroom, he and I agreed that it needs a pocket door into the adjacent bathroom.  Here’s the bedroom wall where it will go:


Here’s the bathroom side:


Sunny, of course, supervises all work done on the house, as well as its documentation:


We had a small mishap on Tuesday, when *someone* (who should have known better since he was the one who wrote the warning on the treads) accidentally stepped too close to the edge of the bottom one and snapped it off (hence the post title):


Although I am pretty comfortable in my temporary downstairs bedroom, I *am* looking forward to getting my house back…  eventually…  I hope…

February 18, 2009

New BMI = 46.58

Filed under: health — origamifreak @ 9:26 am


I have a physical with my doctor scheduled for this afternoon, and tonight will be the first workout in the basement fitness center (finally!)

2/19 Edit: Other things came up, so there wasn’t a workout. At the physical the doctor said I was good to go, though, and told me I could target up to 150 or 160 bpm, as long as it comes down when I stop exercising. So that’s good news. Got some blood drawn this morning after the requisite 12 hrs of fasting, since he wanted to check levels of things in there. Dropped another .4 lbs thanks to the fasting. 😐

February 15, 2009

From guest author, Kathie the Beltway gal

Filed under: cats,language,literature,travel — yenezie @ 4:42 pm
Tags: , ,

Origamifreak went to DC for the holiday weekend to visit Kathie.  After being teased about “still having that old dining room lamp post up,” OF has arranged for her hostess to provide a guest entry:

It was almost unfortunate that my first introduction to C.S. Lewis were the Chronicles of Narnia books.  The stories were tedious, the children characters unrelatable and insipid, and the overuse of parentheses drove me to near madness  — not a good idea when teenagers are already emotional lunatics.  I probably could have gotten past the first two issues, but the abundant sight of parentheses was a tie breaker and I had vowed with infinity plus one that I will never read another book of his.  13 years old girls can be very unforgiving that way.

Fortunately growing up happens and along the way discovered that C.S. Lewis was much more than an author of children book, he was also a man of leveraging insights and possessed a great talent of writing plainly about our psyches in the search of meaning, morality, and myth.  Ah, see that?  A comma before “and myth”.  I’m not a grammar nazi but what is with today’s writers and so-called journalists’ habit of leaving out the comma when separating three ((THREE!) and yes I know I’ve just bitched about using parentheses) or more words, phrases, or clauses in a series?  Nowadays it seemed that only lawyers have the enough sense to correctly use commas, that alone brings sadness to the human race.  While I’m on the subject, unless you’re a novelist the period should go on the outside on the quotes, I don’t care what some Mr. Manner guy in Chicago says.  Obama is from Chicago and already he has cheezed off the European Union not yet one month into his administration.

Not only is English the international language of science, it is also the international language of the Miss Universe pageant and sport anouncements.  So it is of no surprise that foreigners could read page 739 subsection XII(s) of the stimulus bill where “buy America” translate to “protectionist” in French and so the European Union reacted with its typical nuance by crying “trade war!” (oh, so now they support the war) and Canada proclaimed with “a march to insanity!”.  At least when Rumsfield cheezed off Europeans by gabbing about “Old Europe”, he did it intentionally.

Keep this up and people will be acting like my cat toward me.


Mokey acting annoyed since Kathie allowed OF to take a photo of them. (Shunning is his favorite form of punishment.)

February 3, 2009

New Dining Room Light

OK, so my current dining room fixture is this ugly brass-looking candelabra thing which I have detested since I got here:


The only good thing about it is that it is a convenient place to store my cat wine charms. Somehow the orange Sunny-looking one has disappeared. Probably caught on someone’s hair at some point and walked away. So I guess it wasn’t that good at even keeping those safe.

So now that the ceiling is going to be redone, I can get a new fixture. One I want.

My cousin Cracker has a really neat red counterbalanced lamp over her kitchen table that is wall-mounted. I reasoned there must be something like that available in a ceiling mount, and after several hours of hunting online, I figured out it’s called a “rise and fall pendant lamp.”


Rise and Fall Lamp

You can get them in many different colors, if you’re willing to pay in British Pounds. You can buy a white one from a US website for over $350 before tax and shipping.



However, Pottery Barn has them on back-order for under $200, I want the one with the 18-inch white shade, and I’m willing to wait.

It has all the things I want: it has a socket for 100W bulb (I’ll put a fluorescent 150 in there), and a white finish on the large tulip-shaped shade so it won’t be too jarring with the other hardware in the house (such as the ceiling fan/light in the foyer and the hallway flushmounts – “Bob” has lectured me on making sure the all hardware looks harmonious).

Porter Pendant

Porter Pendant

I guess I’m not the only one who finds these interesting, because there was a blog post about them at in October. Here’s a December post from the same blog, showing a large ceramic one the same as I’m getting:

18" Ceramic Porter Pendant

18" Ceramic Porter Pendant

The CHAIRcase becomes a STAIRcase

Filed under: home improvement,technology — origamifreak @ 5:23 pm
Tags: , ,

In our last installment the lower staircase had been yanked out and replaced with a chair:


Since then a new lower staircase has been constructed.  I was instructed to take the treads off for this picture:


…and to take details of the stringers:

img_0957 img_0958

I think the stringer on the right is how it’s going to look on both sides, eventually.*

I also was instructed to pick up a 12″ speed square at the new Lowes on the way home to aid with cutting the stringers on the longer flight from the landing to the 2nd floor.  I’m learning all kinds of new things.

*Update: Yes, the stringer on the left is now like the one on the right.  In fact, here’s what it looks like, now:


(With furry models for scale.)

February 1, 2009

Bamboo Progress

Filed under: home improvement — origamifreak @ 8:56 am
Tags: , ,

When we last left our heroes, the bamboo planks had been sorted by grain and hue in the basement.

Now the pile in the basement has shrunk


…because the planks have been distributed around the house to acclimate

in the bedroom (covered up so the paint won’t get on them):


in the study:


In the dining room (note the custom sawhorses):


The stairs have to be rebuilt, too.  At the moment the lower staircase is really a CHAIRcase:


Calculations for building stairs are complicated:


So I’m just very glad it’s not up to me, because my arithmetic skills would definitely NOT be up to the task.

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