Sunday, May 31, 2009

I'll Tile the Floor! What Fun!

This story takes place in the upstairs portion (1/3) of the garage where I have my scrapbooking/card making stuff. I refer to it as the Paper Studio.
Awhile back I decided that I was going to have to put something down on the floor. Small scraps, embellishments and what-nots refused to be swept up off of the plywood. It was impossible to clean. Not wanting to invest a lot of money in this project and wanting to do it myself, I decided that using the peel and stick tiles was the way to go.
As I pondered the color possibilities offered to me by Menards, I decided that, with white walls and a black wrought iron railing, that a black and white checkerboard design would be quite striking. A few red tiles dropped in now and then would make it extra fun. (Red tiles were not available, even as a special order item, I found out later.) While eating dinner at The Vine one evening, we enlisted the help of some bored waitstaff in calculating how many tiles would be needed for this project. By the end of dinner, my new floor was etched into the top of my styrofoam take-out box.
A trip to Menards followed, where a very knowledgable (or really good college student employee loaded my cart with 2 boxes of tiles and an additional 20 tiles of each color which he painstakingly chose from the lot. A gallon of sealer, verbal instructions, and I was good to go. A couple months passed.
Last Tuesday, having the day off, I decided to tackle the "floor project". After cleaning and sealing the floor, I was anxious to get started. I opened one box. Black tiles. All shiny and perfect. I opened the second box. Black tiles. All shiny and perfect. WHAT??? WAIT!!! THAT'S NOT RIGHT!! After a mini-meltdown, I decided I would just have to make it work. After all, I did have 20 white tiles. After drafting three or four alternate layouts, I decided on a strategicly random layout consisting of 5 blocks of 4 white tiles.
The process was not as easy as I thought it would be, nor was it as quick. I nearly finished the floor that Tuesday afternoon, but had to quit to get ready to babysit. I had two walls of tile to go, but they each needed to be cut and I didn't have the energy to tackle that project. One evening after work, I cut the remaining tiles and installed them. So now the room is complete. It's not perfect, but I can live with it. By the time I get everything moved back into place, the imperfections won't be noticed - I hope! However, now that I have decided to take our spare computer out to the Paper Studio, I've decided to tile the dormer space where it will sit. According to my calculations, another 40 tiles to lay and then I will be truly done.
I hope to post some pictures in a day or two.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Thank You Moms

I just wanted to say a big THANK YOU to all af you wonderful mothers. Without you, I would have not job. (well, it sort of works like that)

Friday, May 8, 2009

Tis the Season

Have you heard the rumble? The weather has warmed up and the motorcycles are out! They sound like bees in the distance. Last weekend my husband and I made the most of the warmer weather. On Saturday we attended the open house festivities sponsored by Hawkeye Harley in Coralville, IA. ( They had an awesome group (2 guys) performing! They did several Jimmy Buffet numbers and played some serious guitar and harmonica. Watch for Fry Daddies ( to play in your area. It was a little breezier than we expected, so we didn't ride too far from home.

On Sunday we hooked up with another couple and headed for The Chrome Horse in Cedar Rapids, IA. A totally cool biker bar that suffered terrible damage in the flood last summer, but has been restored and looks fantastic. The atmosphere and food are both outstanding. ( The horseshoe shaped bar adds an extra touch of class and uniqueness. Following lunch we decided it was too nice to go home, so we headed to Sutcliff, IA, home to a great little biker bar. There were plenty of bikes and bikers there. Most were sitting outside, enjoying the day. They have an interesting bridge in Sutcliffe. Unfortunately, the floods of last summer knocked out the first span, so you can no longer take your food and drinks out there to enjoy. Hopefully it will be restored.

It was an enjoyable day spent with friends. We were blessed by good weather and careful drivers.