Tag Archives: moles


Lately I’ve been writing a lot about gardening, as many bloggers are this time of year. The front garden is bursting with spring color, even on a cloudy day.

colorful garden seen from paned window

And moles … why, with six cats, do we still have moles??

mole hill on brick sidewalk

Lacy doesn’t know how to catch a mole, but she knows how to pose for the camera.

Black cat sitting in front of Japanese lantern

But, you’re wondering … what happened to the kitchen project? It went underground for a few weeks. More precisely, Eric developed a hernia, very possibly from running (hard) into the corner of one of the cabinets. (A lesson here: Do not park unfinished cabinets in the middle of the kitchen.) As his symptoms worsened, he could do less and less physical work. Seven weeks ago he had surgery, and believe me, recovering from hernia surgery is no picnic. (I say this never having had hernia surgery … but I’ve witnessed the result, and I know I never want to experience it!) Eric’s getting better every day, and he’ll soon be back to 100%. But the bottom line is, we’ve lost two months of progress on our kitchen renovation.

I’ve had my heart set on celebrating our house’s 100th birthday with a big party in July (August, at the latest), but the reality is, it’s just not going to happen. I can’t deny that I am bummed. (No way are we entertaining before this kitchen’s finished!) This saddens me because a house only turns 100 once, and on the West Coast, relatively few houses are much older than that.

I also can’t deny that I’m partially responsible for our complete lack of progress during this time. At the very least, I coulda, shoulda painted the breakfast room, the ceiling, and all the beadboard. Nothing was stopping me. I just ran out of steam and enthusiasm, and I was distracted by Eric’s distress … and a garden full of weeds. Without Eric working on the kitchen with me, renovation just wasn’t as much fun.

As for the party, there’s always next year, right? It won’t be a 100th birthday party, but it could be a “Happy 2nd Century” party. And with a year’s reprieve (see how I’m talking myself into this?) we’ll have time to paint the exterior and rebuild the side porch! Whew! I’m suddenly so glad I don’t have a July party deadline breathing down my neck anymore! (I know darned well we will be rushing to complete whatever project we’ll be doing at that time … but it won’t—better not—be the kitchen.)

Now that Eric can resume building and installing drawers and there’s no excuse for me not being productive, we’re rededicating ourselves to getting this train back on track. Once again I’m hearing saw-and-sander noises coming from the basement. (I admit this always makes me a little nervous, but Eric’s only come upstairs holding a bleeding body part a couple of times. He uses safety equipment and he does know what he’s doing.) Now he’s actually waiting on me to catch up and apply polyurethane to the drawer boxes.

We can almost see the finish line on this section of cabinets. Most of these drawers and their glides are not yet attached to the cabinet boxes. They’re just sitting there, looking good (like Lacy) … but as soon as I finish finishing them, Eric will magically make it all work. Of course they’ll all have drawer fronts and pulls attached when they’re done, like the one at upper right. But you knew that.

base cabinets with drawer boxes

Turns out, installing the drawers has been a bit of a pain because the drawer fronts are inset (they don’t overlap the frames). The glides are attached to blocks inside the cabinets, and the boxes and fronts have to line up precisely, adjusted for the pressure of the load they will carry. Much tweaking involved. I tend not to watch because it makes me twitchy.

drawers and glides installed in cabinet

Duke points out which drawer will hold his food bin. The cat food—which he likes even better—will be in a similar bin in the next drawer.

Boxer sniffing plastic food bin

Last week I picked up a paintbrush and finished touching up the upper cabinet shelves, which, if you’ll recall, Eric had sanded down, trying to get the doors to fit properly. (This didn’t really work, and we are resigned to straight doors that won’t fit perfectly flush in the warped frame—or is it the other way around?) Finally, I reinstalled my shelf paper—for the third time—and moved our dishes back into their home-with-a-view. This accomplished two things: I got rid of FIVE boxes from the dining room, AND we can once again eat off of our real dishes (b-bye plastic picnic set)! Think we have enough coffee cups and wine glasses? Good grief … it’s just the two of us!

upper cabinets with glass inserts

I love how this cabinet turned out. To paraphrase Woody Allen, “Love is too weak a word for what I feel — I lurve it.”