My blog about motorcycle rides, photography etc.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Kitchen Project

I don't like little white tiles.  I'm sure there are a place for them, like public bathrooms in subway stations - just not in my kitchen.  I have lived with them nearly eight years because I'm a tightwad and didn't want to spend money on new kitchen countertops when these worked fine.

They are getting pretty worn and scratched - probably because I didn't used to be good at using a cutting board, and also the grout is starting to chip around the edges.

Charlie had been out last weekend with some clients and had found out a bit about kitchens so he was on a bit of a roll. 

I love the look of granite and we finally went out yesterday to get some rough estimates.  With measurements in hand we headed over to On this Rock (Granite Mafia) off of Hwy 62.  The sign on the door said they were closed and we were ready to move on when Charlie spotted someone in the warehouse. 

It was the owners dropping off lunch for a worker.  They opened up the store and showed us around, gave us an estimate and told us to go pick out a slab as we would only need one.

We went to Precision Marble and Tile.  When we told him the type of granite we liked and the salesman said they didn't carry "construction grade" granite.  We weren't too offended and let him write up an estimate.  It was about $1000 higher for the estimate and $1000 higher for the slab we liked so we moved on to the next place.

We went to Oregon Tile and Marble.  The warehouse was HUGE!  They had lots of slabs of granite and some marble.  We found an awesome slab in the colors we liked, with big chunky pieces.  We picked the satin finish instead of polished and will hammer out the other details with the fabricator.  The first slab we saw and liked was about $19/sq. foot but ended up with $38/sq. foot.  It's a good thing my kitchen is just big enough to be in a Barbie's playhouse.

Here are some current pictures of my kitchen.

This is the slab of granite I picked. 


10/3/13 We went to pick out a sink and a faucet at the granite fabricator (On this Rock).  We made an appointment for the guys to come out and make a pattern and they said the installation will be about 5 days later.  We then went down to Oregon Tile and Marble to take a look at our slab.  We had to pick out the finish.  It will still be satin but we picked wet instead of dry.  Wet was more colorful and made it deeper looking, dry was a little more white and shallow.
We asked when the demolition was going to be done - oops.  They said that was up to us unless we paid extra.  Since I don't know anything about demolition I asked the fabricator to do it (for an extra $500.00).  When I got home I wondered if it was anything we could do ourselves and looked up a couple of YouTube videos. 
After watching a few videos I have determined that it is a lot more work than I am able (or willing) to do.  It's a HUGE mess and one of the videos had a girl who said it took her 15 hours to demo a kitchen about our size.  We discussed having the guys look at it when they come out and try a little bit but I think we will leave this to the professionals.
10-6-13  I thought about getting rid of the countertop microwave which covers so much of our current countertop.  I want to show off the new counters, not hide them!  We went to Home Depot and picked out a built in (above the stove) microwave oven.  We went with stainless steel to match the stove.  When we decided on getting an above the stove microwave and we knew we had to move fast because this would change the area of the backsplash measurement. 
10-11-13  Charlie ripped out the oven vent a few days ago and installed an electrical outlet so the build in microwave can be installed tomorrow.  A couple more weeks and we will have new counter tops!  So excited!

10-13-13 The Home Depot guys came and installed my new microwave.
Looks great, works great too!
10/28/13 was supposed to be demo day in my kitchen but the guy from On this Rock called to say they have the flu going around so they moved the demo to next Tuesday.  Oh well.
11/5/13  I called Charlie this morning to see if the demo had started and it hadn't because the guys were still in Grants Pass.  I called back in the afternoon and the guys had just arrived.  I asked Charlie to have them make some "demo noise" for me.  Charlie said a couple guys were picking up hammers and I could hear them pounding on the counters.  I cheered with delight!
I came home to the smell of fresh plywood when I got in the door.  The kitchen demo is done and they put down fresh plywood.  They got a bid aggressive near the refrigerator where there is a 4 inch hole in the wall.
It's probably going to be about a week before I get my new countertops.
11-14-13  I got off work last night and came home to new countertops.  WOW!  I love them!  The sink isn't hooked up so no dishwasher or disposal either.  Charlie said he called a plumber who can be out sometime next week so Charlie is sending out a lifeline to his dad to help him reinstall the disposal and hook up the sink and dishwasher.
Today I came home to find Chuck under my kitchen sink!  Charlie had to go to a quick appointment and Chuck was finishing up with the sink.  The install of the faucet looks awesome but I can't use the sink till tomorrow because the pipe glue has to dry.
Over the weekend I need to take everything out of the drawers and vacuum all the junk from the countertop demo and then put everything through the dishwasher.


Saturday, September 14, 2013

Medford to Sisters

We had an AWESOME trip to Sisters, Oregon. 

We left Wednesday morning, September 11, 2013 from Medford, Oregon.  I'm riding my 2012 HD Deluxe in Birch White and Sunburst Red.  My Dad riding his blue V-Strom 1000,  my husband on his 2009 BMW 1200RT and my father in law on his 2012 Can-Am Spyder.

It was a beautiful morning and we had been looking forward to taking this trip for over a year.  We headed down Hwy 238 from Medford through Jacksonville to Grants Pass.  We rode 199 through Cave Junction and stopped in O'Brien for some water and to stretch our legs. 

I had stopped in O'Brien about a month ago to get pictures for the E2E Motorcycle Rally so I knew they had clean bathrooms and a little mini-mart for snacks and water.  After a little break we headed  south into California and almost to Crescent City before we headed up 197 North to Hwy 101 and up the coast. 

The redwoods were so beautiful and huge!

Welcome to Oregon?  Didn't we just leave Oregon.  Oh well here we are again.

Stopped for lunch and walked down the pier in Brookings.  All the piers are new, replaced since the Tsunami wiped them out last year.

Finally got to stop at the dinosaur park!

Dad and Chuck - about to be a little snack!

The first of the sasquatch statues I saw along the way.

We got to Bandon and it was a beautiful afternoon.  We got settled into the Bandon Beach Motel and went into Old Town Bandon to take a walk around town.  We had been here in April and everything was closed up when we got there so we were all looking forward to looking around town.  Here's my Dad taking a ride with Chuck.

This guy was dumping his crab pots and was popular with the seagulls.  They were all screeching and making quite a racket. 

Light House in Bandon.

Seal in Bandon Harbor. I talked to one of the ladies who had crab pots in the water and she said they baited the traps with chicken.  They would leave the pots down at the bottom for about 20 minutes before they pulled them up to check them for crabs.  She said the seals go down and rip into the traps to get the chicken so they aren't all that cute to the crab fishers.

               Cool flowers in Bandon.  We had flowers like this in my backyard when I was a kid.

We met this guy in Bandon.  He was from Germany and he had been traveling from Canada to Alaska (took a swim in the Arctic Ocean) and was on his way south to South America.  And he is doing it on a 125cc Vespa.

View from the restaurant in Bandon.

Big and ugly seahorse.

Post Office in Bandon.

Views from the Hotel in Bandon.

Bandon Beach Motel sits on the cliffs and has a lovely view.

We took a walk out to the bluffs at the hotel and it was lovely.  We watched the sun go down behind the clouds .

We woke up in the morning to fog.  It was pretty and a lot warmer than I thought it would be.


The guys getting ready to go.

On the way to breakfast, I spotted these statues in Bandon.  They are made from all the junk that has washed over from Japan since the Tsunami.

From Bandon we headed up the coast.  The fog cleared as the day wore on.  The roads were clear and excellent.  We stopped in Reedsport for gas then went on Hwy 38 along the Umpqua River.  We had to get off the back roads and take I-5 north towards Eugene.

Steam Train.

A small heard of Elk at the viewing station.

We stopped in Drain for a butt rest and some water. 
Covered Bridge in Drain.  Past Drain we headed up 99.

Dad coming out of the Goodpasture covered bridge.

Lunch stop

Checking the map.
We went north up I-5 north to Hwy 126 east through the Willamet Forest and Hwy 242 over the McKenzie Pass.  There were lots of lava fields and looked like we were on the moon.

Lava fields on McKenzie Pass.


The Sisters Mountain Range (South and North) have several active glaciers on them.  I recognized this snow is a glacier because of my Alaska trip a couple years ago. 
The Observatory

Dad and Chuck going over McKenzie Pass.

We made it to the top of the pass and walked around the lava fields and up to the observatory.  We got into Sisters and checked into the Ponderosa Hotel.  It was very nice and had nice rooms.  Charlie rode across the street and got some cheese and crackers, beer and diet coke.

In Sisters at last.  Just chillaxing!

Bike line up in the parking lot at the Ponderosa.

Chuck feeding the llama at the Ponderosa.


Stallion statue in Sisters

We had dinner in town and a Mexican food restaurant, and went back to the hotel.
From Sisters we went south on Hwy 20 to Bend then through Hwy 46 on the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway towards Mt. Bachelor.  It was very beautiful.  We stopped at one of the lakes to take some pictures.

We left this lake and the road was long and straight as an arrow for miles.  We all took our turns "feeding the big dog" and opened up our engines.  Charlie said he hit 115 and suddenly worried about pebbles in the road.  I chickened out at 102, my Dad hit 103 and Chuck was over 100 as well.   This was no race - just a personal thing we all did with the open road.

From Hwy 97 we went to Hwy 138 past Diamond lake to Hwy 230 to Hwy 62.  We stopped at Becky's for lunch and a slice of the pie and headed home.  It got hot pretty fast as we came out of the mountains.  By the time we got back to the house it was 100 degrees.
It was a great trip and we all had a great time.  We sure couldn't have asked for better weather.  The roads were awesome and we would do it again next weekend!