Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Isn't Home Ownership Fun!!!

Man, this past couple of weeks has been a whirlwind of activity.  Many thanks to all our friends and family that have helped us to pull this off and get moved in.  One of the biggest continuing projects has been keeping the grass watered.  It sure seems like an all day affair.  Start in early morning and continue through the afternoon.  Rinse and Repeat.  The plus side of this, is that our hard work has been really paying off.  The grass is coming in green and I'll soon be mowing... yah!!  So here are some of the things I learned from this:

-Don't be afraid to get the ground saturated.  As long as puddles don't stick around for more than 1 hour you'll be fine.
-Don't water at night.  Watering at night can cause mold an fungus growth.  We didn't have this problem but heard it from a lot of sources.
-Some spots won't get as much water as others.  This can be really discouraging, but let it get you down.  As long as a large portion of your lawn gets watered you'll do just fine.
-Oscillating sprinklers get more even coverage.  While impact style sprinklers cover more ground it tends not to be as even.  More work is involved with getting a group of impact sprinklers to water well.
-Sometimes walking on the lawn can't be avoided.  Try not to walk on the hydro-seed as much as possible, but if you haven't don't be afraid to do it.
-Rain is your best friend.  With the low amount of water fall this summer when we did get rain it was really helpful.  Not having to water for 3 days is a God send.

And that's my sage advice on watering hydro-seed.  We've been busy on a lot of other projects as well.  One of prime importance, or so I was told, was putting up the blinds/shades and drapes.  And I must admit, it really makes the house look "complete".

I also worked on putting in the mail box.  Not the most difficult project, but not easy either.  Because of the proximity to the driveway, all the soil from 4" down was mostly drainage rock.  A post hole digger was not of much use, so I ended up digging most of it by hand.  We dug 18" down and used 2 bags of fast setting concrete.  Not too difficult but you need to make sure your post is level and that you get plenty in concrete in front of it so that it doesn't sag.  They also sell a metal spike for pounding into the ground, but I didn't wanna go that route, I guess I'm just a glutton for punishment.

The next project was installing the garage door opener.  This is arguably not a difficult job, but it does take some patience, and attention to detail.  The most challenging part is reinforcing the garage door where it connects to the operator.  They sell kits for this, but they are mostly only available only and for the most part unnecessary.  What I ended up doing was taking 2 pieces of pre-punched l-bar to make a u-shape and bolting this to the very top of the top section of the garage door just under the horizontal support.  I ended up  bolting each piece in 3 places in addition to the 1 bolt per side for the bracket which connects the operator to the door.  The other thing that I needed to do, since our garage is semi-finished,  was to put an l-shaped bar on the ceiling to hole the garage door operator motor up.  This wasn't too bad, but was a little odd as the spacing in the garage is 24" on center.  So far everything has been great.  We ended up installing a really quiet belt driven operator because the Florence model has the garage right beneath the 4th bedroom.  We have used it a few times while the baby was sleeping and she hasn't woken up.

The last project that I tackled was installing the refrigerator water line.  This one was fairly easy but took quite a bit of preparation.  The first thing I needed to do was turn of all the water and drain the lines.  I was lucky enough to only need to connect to the existing CPVC piping.  If it would have been copper piping it would have been a much bigger challenge.  In my case all I really had to do was glue all the pipes together and then connect the refrigerator tubing.  For the tubing I used an installation kit that I picked up at Lowes.  I really liked the kit that I purchased as it used quick connects instead of the typical saddle valve.  I would highly recommend it.

While I was doing that, the Mrs. was busy working on getting the kitchen all set up.  She had a lot of help from her aunts who made the project really quick and easy.  If there is one thing I would recommend is getting the kitchen squared away first.  Nothing makes working on the house easier than being able to sit down and eat or get something to drink.

We'll that's the big projects I've been working on, more to come, and hopefully I'll get some pictures up soon.


  1. You sound busy! I look forward to seeing some pictures! Why did you have to put in your own mailbox? Did RH not provide one for you?

  2. Busy does not begin to describe it. No, Ryan Homes did not provide us a mailbox. It could have been an option but I'm not really sure. As far as I know our neighbors had to also install their own mailbox.

  3. Here's a sneak peek at the next project post (aka the Honey Do" list for this week: Paint and install chair rail and curtains in the baby's room, install my AC, and mount and hook-up my TV in the living room ( among other things). -The Mrs.

  4. We had to buy a mailbox too! That's going on my list of not-so-pleasant surprises. We just paid a TON of money for this house and don't get a mailbox?!

    Your list sounds like our list for this week too!! Good luck!!!

    1. That is so strange! Our community has matching mailboxes that came with the house!