May, 2011

Opened the house, brought along a load of firewood and reprogrammed the "guest code" on the front door to "0406", replacing the "3544" code used the previous year.  The "4962" for "49MA" for family members was retained.  Battery replaced in the keyless lock.  I think this should be done every other year, at minimum.

Morse lumber (Eric Westgate) showed up to replace the slider glass and of course had the wrong door ordered so was unable to do anything.  Eventually I met with the main detail guy from Morse who came out and measured everything and will order the correct replacement, which should be available in a few weeks.  He will get us pricing on new hardware as well, most of which we should replace due to corrosion over the past 20 years.  Although the glass is covered under warranty, the labor and any additional materials are not, so there will some expense involved.

Outhaul was not yet put in, but I moved the boats to the outside, except for the dinghy, which requires 2 people.

Repaired garage door.  This involved removing the rotted cross section on the door closest to the house, lifting the door to align it and screwing the new section in place.  I also added a small rope pull to pull it inward from the inside and it works fine.  There is some decay on the other door and I'll check that out more thoroughly in June.  It may require a drip cap on the top of the doors.

Replaced the post and trellis next to the gas meter.

Replaced front screen door with new vinyl door.  Vinyl has the distinct advantage of not rotting, not requiring paint, and it also is stable with moisture changes, so it won't swell and stick the way wood does.   Since the old opening was 84" high, this required building a false header above the door to take up that space.  The main door is still 84" high, but the difference isn't a concern.  (See photos.)  The header has been caulked and  primed but not yet painted with a top coat.  We may want to get a vinyl door soon for the deck screen door as well.

Replaced the missing panel on the pipe case in Suki's room.  It has been primed but not painted.

Installed beach stairway next to outhaul.  I think this is a better location than last year since it's in between deck stairs and much more convenient when using the outhaul.  I also didn't dig as deeply this year, so the top step is level with the seawall instead of one tread down.  We'll see if it works better, but it's definitely easier to put them in that way.

Left some Arrival and Departure Checklists in the top drawer of the hall bureau, each on in a self addressed envelope to Barbara's Guilford address.

Bought and labelled monthly packets of yeast for septic system.  They are in the top drawer in the downstairs bathroom. Stocked toilet paper and paper towels.

Removed a truckload of debris, including stuff from above plus some awful carpeting in the attic and some old boat stuff from Dad's boat.  More can probably go, but I wasn't sure of some of it.

Evaluated the internet situation and spoke with Russ.  The signal remains weak and intermittent in our house, but works well if you move closer to the Keeler's.  I think we can install an access point and a directional antenna in the Keeler's house to make ours work normally.  The antenna is about $35 and an access point (router) that can attach to the antenna is probably another $75 or so.  I also spoke to Comcast.  They do have seasonal special which would provide us with normal cable wireless internet service for about $40/month for six months.  The problem is that it likely would be much higher the following year, so I think we are best to see if we can just work out a solution with the Keelers.

Cleaned the house and mopped the floors on departure.  It should be all set for Pat Norton next week.

October, 2011
Work began on the upstairs bathroom renovation.  Gregg and I arrived on Thursday before Columbus Day weekend and removed the sink and toilet then removed the old linoleum and made repairs to the existing subfloor.  We removed the old cast  iron piping with a sledge hammer, then Bennett Brothers plumbing arrived on Monday and installed new plumbing for the toilet, sink and bathtub.  We then used masonry floor leveler, Hardibacker board and installed the new floor tiles.  We cut and hung sheetrock for the walls, including 1/2 Hardibacker for new bathtub tiles to be installed in the spring.  I had the truck, so I hauled all of the debris to the Bourne dump, and once again was not charged anything to dump it there.

I cleaned the chimney, which had very little creasote or other accumulation despite a long time between cleanings.  The chimney seems to be in fairly good condition, as near as I can tell looking from below.

Also used "polymeric sand" to fill the gaps in the fireplace hearth.  (I had some left over from doing my walkway at home.)  It fills the spaces between the bricks and between the hearth and the flooring, then once wetted it hardens almost like mortar.  I'm not sure how durable it is, but it's easy enough to repeat in the future if needed.

We finally got the phone quality fixed.  If poor, it can be tested at the outside box.  If quality is poor there (which it was), it's the phone company's responsibilty so Verizon sent a service tech and replaced the whole box at no charge to us.

The end of the perpetual duel with Morse Lumber to fix the slider may be nearing its completion.  Bob Yourell had yet one more backordered item to procure (the weatherstripping), then claims that they can finish the replacement of the glass and many of the worn parts in the next few weeks.  We'll see.   It's probably going to cost about $800, even though the glass itself is under warranty and is free to us.

I had to stick around for an extra day or two to finish up the tiling.  Gregg helped get the heavy stuff in before he left, so the house closure was otherwise routine, except that the bathroom needs to be finished in the spring before we open the house to guests.
Brisker and toaster oven replaced.  (Dave, Wayne)
Oct/2011, 1/13/11
Improvements - 2011