Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Demolition Days

It was a long weekend here in WA and while for some that might have been a chance for a little RnR, here at Muriel it was go, go, go! I had to work (day shift) throughout, but after I walked out the door at 730am each day, assorted friends and family members joined PK in tearing Muriel apart!

We were excited that our design required the removal of a couple of walls- to turn a corner pantry with ill used corner shelves into a functional set of cupboards. Nothing gets the blood pumping like a bit of controlled destruction! We had earlier enlisted the help of PK's cousin -a builder- to take a look inside our roof cavity and he confirmed that two walls were load bearing and would need adjusting in order to avoid our roof sagging. He also noted an important beam (not involved in the kitchen) was cracked, so although it was going to cost us extra, PK and I agreed we wanted to be sure our house was safe and get it replaced at the same time. The builder was the first on site on the weekend, getting the demolition off to a good (and safe!) start by ensuring that the roof didn't fall on everyone's heads!
When I left early on Saturday morning, the kitchen looked like this:
PK and I had emptied all of the drawers and cupboards into boxes and shifted them to other rooms in the house (mainly the spare bedroom) over the previous couple of nights. All of the furniture from the rest of the 'great room' needed to move too, but that occurred a little later in the day thanks to the extra helpers. I wasn't expecting much when I arrived home on Saturday afternoon, (given how much there was to do!) but I  was definitely worried- PK's cousin (the builder) had left him with a jackhammer (as well PK's angle-grinder and a sledgehammer) to use to remove the walls and the ceramic tiles!
View from the front door, Friday evening
While I was at work, wondering every moment how it was all going and fretting, this is what the boys were up to:
First attack on the corner pantry
Ripping! Tearing! Shovelling!
Hands off ladies, this last one is mine ;)
Don't worry about me though, I still got to flex my own demo muscles! As soon as I walked in the door, it was off with the work gear and on with the 'doesn't matter if it gets dirty' reno gear.
Sweeping up the rubble- no more kitchen!
Removing the tile adhesive
Pk tells me that the tiles came up really easily compared to the adhesive- but we needed to have a clean surface so that our new flooring can go in without a hitch! After a few hours more work, we packed it in and toddled off to one of the helper's houses to enjoy a quick dip in their pool- and get away from the mess!
Lots of rubble
Sunday was all about getting that even flooring, with PK and one of his brothers attacking the adhesive some more and ripping up the carpet in the 'living area'. PK also managed to find the time (and the energy) to rip up part of the concrete slab with the jack-hammer and the angle-grinder, so that the drainpipe could be relocated for the new sink and installation of the dishwasher. My hero! I think it is important to note though, that the major things like getting the gas pipes sealed off properly was done by a professional- a gas leak is no funny business!
Drain hole dug
After the rapid destruction of Saturday and the finishing off on Sunday, Monday's efforts didn't seem as dramatic, but necessary jobs were still crossed off the list! PK dug further into the ground for the pipe and then with a few extra bits of pipe, moved the drainage to the left, ready for the dishwasher and new sink.
Plumbing- PK's new occupation?
Together on Monday evening, PK and I plastered up the exposed brick near the front door and next to the glass sliding doors, where the much maligned 'half-walls' and the kitchen ledge had been removed. I believe that the method of removal mirrored that of the first half wall from this post. Unfortunately for me, someone had missed the mark in sledge-hammering the wall next to the front door:
See the gouge out of the window edge?
Ingenuity kicked in as we tried to create a corner out of a crater, but I think it may be in need of a touch-up. PK raced through his plastering, but I took my time because my wall would be exposed once all's said and done and his efforts will be mostly hidden away behind cabinets. As a last ditch effort to get things all ready for the trades this week, we also ripped up the carpet in the hallway, where the same flooring from the 'great room' will be carried through. It had been left down throughout the weekend so that it could absorb the majority of the dirt- instead of it being carried into the rooms I was trying to keep semi-clean!
Buh-bye grotty carpet!
I have been given a long list of to-dos for today by PK as he is back to work and I am now having my 'weekend'. I have no idea how many things I will get done, but trying to make the house liveable until the new kitchen is installed is more or less the priority! The list includes:
  • finishing the plastering
  • removing the skirting boards in the hallway
  • removing the remaining tiles from the kitchen window ledge
  • picking up plasterboard for the gap in the ceiling where the pantry once stood
- plus about three loads of washing, dishes, watering the thirsty vegie garden and of course, the massive amount of general cleaning to get rid of the dust that has settled on everything! I don't like my chances!

I'll leave you with a couple of pics of what the 'great room' looks like this morning. I can't wait until the cabinets go in (planned for Friday!) and the room begins to take it's new shape!
From the back wall-where the oven used to be!
From the front door- very empty!
I'd better get cracking on that list now- did you accomplish anything grand over the weekend? Or did you manage to find some time to just relax?


Terry Chilvers said...

looks like good fun !
I'm interested that you took the 'don't let the house fall down' option :)

I also appreciate the opportunity for innuendo, but have restrained myself

Cathy said...

Thanks for curbing your natural tendencies, Terry! I doubt I have the where-withal to comprehend innuendo at the moment!

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