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TWEAKS+inspiration : The Game's Afoot

House projects continue to move along this year and I can see the finish line. You might remember the floors on the main floor were done earlier in the year. Just two more flooring jobs to do and after Jesus' team painted the interior walls, I was ready. At the end of July, new carpet was installed on the bedroom level. Twenty-three year old well-lived carpet - complete with faded places, bleach marks and a few spots of spilled paint.

I really wanted an exact replacement of my old carpet. Turns out carpet colors have changed in 20 years - go figure. The closest I could find was a wool Karastan, beautiful but oh, so expensive. That was a hard pass. So I brought home three affordable choice samples, choosing the middle one.

Here's the chosen one against my old beloved carpet.

I opted for a commercial padding - it isn't very cushy underfoot but I can move furniture around without leaving a permanent dent in the carpet.

Once Miguel saw the carpet, he called his boss. "I'm going to need three days (instead of two). I want to take my time with the seams." Fine with me as the seams are invisible which is hard with this flat weave kind of carpet.

Last step was the steps.

So nice not to have bleach spots! Funny, in these photos, it looks like there're spots on the new carpet. Not sure why because in real life, it looks fine and dandy.

Craftsmen Miguel and Jose did a beautiful job.

The next day, the painters came back to touch up the baseboards. Here's the finished carpet with the new wall color. This small downstairs area is laughingly called the "family room" on the house plans. For us, it has always been a walk-through, although I do sew on that table.

Next, what to do with the 1990's bathroom floor tile? I just couldn't justify the expense of replacing the tile as it's in perfect shape. Not so much with the grout. Sonia, from Sierra Tile & Grout, tried a number of grout colors - I thought I wanted a warm brown (as above).

Sonia suggested a bone color which read a lighter gray on the grout. Perfect. After I scrubbed the tile and grout with a toothbrush (no kidding) and a special cleanser she gave me (that was to save $500 for 3 bathrooms), I was ready for the grout guy. Although, my knees weren't.

Last Monday, Jorge applied the color.

Turns out, I could have done this myself. It did take Jorge 5 hours nonstop to do 3 bathrooms so it was worth a few hundred dollars. Here's how you do it - brush on the product, let it sit for a few minutes, wipe with a wet towel, let dry and repeat for a second coat. No rocket science involved.

Hope you can see how much better the grout looks as it does look fresh and new. Last week continued to be busy. The plumber was here as the water heater was making rocket launching noises. New water heater will be installed on Tuesday. Ugh. Then the pest control guy came to set traps after I heard the pitter patter of little feet coming from the basement. Mr. Mouse was caught immediately.

I also added blue fescue to the two kinds of rosemary in the porch pots. It's drought resistant, so hopefully it'll do well with the coming heat. This weekend, I plan to just sit and watch things grow. Here's to a fun and restful Labor Day!


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