As our rebuilding process continues, the time has come to start covering floors. We have already shown the basement tile itself in a previous post, but this past week they laid most of the tile in the downstairs den, hall, and bathroom. And it looked so good, I decided to put it in my corner office, too (below).
The next picture, taken in the den, shows the frame I created in the floor around the hearth area, using a border of 2x2-inch square tiles. The extra space by the sides of the stove will be used for fire tools, kindling, and wood storage.
If the mantle above the stove seems bowed, that's only because it is. That was probably the result of 12 years worth of little fires, rather than the big one on 12 January 2012. The two mantles were made from the same 12.5 foot plank cut from one of the hickories that had to be felled to make room for our last house. When the mantles were salvaged from the ruins, the one in the basement was still almost pristine, but the one upstairs had to be planed to remove a black coating of soot left by smoke.
In the background, George is sweeping up sawdust and other debris from his use of the living-dining area as a carpenter's workshop, so that the area will be ready for our tile workers to begin installing the oak flooring this week. Later they will switch back to tile for the kitchen floor and the upstairs hearth and entry areas.
We have chosen a composition deck material called ChoiceDek for the front porch and back deck. They will start installing it soon - maybe also this week.
It's been sixteen weeks since the start of framing. We are pleased with the progress and hope it will continue. We want the tile workers to get to the kitchen floor soon, since the cabinets should be ready by mid September. Then there's painting to do inside and out, as well as door locks, light fixtures, bathroom vanities, counter tops, etc. to install - a lot to do, but our fingers are crossed for an October move-in date. Wish us luck! --oc