A party plus one step forward, two steps back

We’ve met a lot of our neighbors already because we’re at the house so much, and right before Thanksgiving, we met another one while standing in front of the house reviewing paint samples. She invited me to the annual women’s holiday brunch and also got me on the email list for the newsletter. The brunch was last Thursday, and I had a lot of fun meeting so many of our future neighbors, all very friendly and welcoming. It was also great to learn that there are so many kids my age in the neighborhood to play with—can’t wait to move!

A number of tile issues cropped up this week. One involved color, the others were related to poor estimating (as John predicted) and another stemming from poor communication between our rep and the project manager. Early in the week, the project manager said to me, “If I missed the email about tiling the ceilings, I’m sorry.”

Me: “There was never an email about it, but it’s been on the spreadsheet since Day One.”

I have lots of photos to share this week, so here goes:

The rest of the backsplash tile on the oven wall was set and grouted.

week 36-1

The rest of the kitchen backsplashes were also grouted,

week 36-2

week 36-3

as was the floor tile in the downstairs half bath:

week 36-4

The trim tile in one upstairs bathroom was set until the installer ran out (true to John’s prediction noted in my last post).

week 36-5

Tile in another shower was begun

week 36-6

but work stopped when the installer pulled the white glass sheets out of the box and noticed the color was different from the sample we’d given him. Lots of studying, comparing, phone calls, meetings, additional sample collecting, hand-wringing, and a discount offer later, it was discovered that a very thin sheet of plastic was graying the color of the white, unnoticeable in the photo, but still true.

week 36-7

Strange that so many people, including me, handled that tile sheet throughout the week and none of us noticed the plastic.

This fun, 4″ x 12″ wave tile (top) and its non-wave companion

bath 3 tile

were installed in the tub shower.

week 36-9

Rhonda drew the tile layout for this one in about five minutes. When she showed it to me, I declared it done and we started working on the next room; it was perfect.

Once the bullnose trim tile comes in, the installer can finish the other two walls. In the meantime, he laid the 24″ x 24″ floor tiles.

We’re not sure why, but all the unopened tile boxes were moved to the master bathroom.

week 36-10

It will all have to be moved out when they start the floor, but we’ve noticed that a lot of stuff happens in this business that is beyond common sense. In the meantime, the installer began cutting and laying out the floor tile for the master bathroom.

week 36-11

The cultured (translation: fake) stone for the interior fireplace surrounds was delivered,

week 36-12

and in our meeting on Thursday, the rep asked how we wanted it laid out, a question I found troubling. Figuring out how to position irregularly sized and shaped stones is the job of a qualified mason. One more thing to lose sleep over….

We also reviewed the fireplace mantel design (found online) including length, projection and installation height. The project manager sketched it on the wall:

week 36-13

Outside, a different crew began work on the back yard fence.

week 36-14

In the meantime, our rep made a bizarre, unexpected announcement about trying to get us into the house before the end of the year.

Anyone who believes that the rest of the tile, stone work, flooring, electrical, plumbing, HVAC, doors, appliances, hardware, fencing, painting, flatwork, landscaping, punch list, final inspections and a certificate of occupancy could all be finished in the next 18 days lives in an alternate universe.

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