Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Meeting Blogger Friend & Completing Renovation Project

Yesterday was an opportune time to get away from renovation stuff and enjoy some time visiting with RV friend, Allen from Allen & Lolita's RV Journey. We agreed to meet at a local Tim Horton's coffee shop in the White Rock/South Surrey area.
Allen - standing in front of his new Ford F-350.
After a good couple of hours sharing stories - along with some good TH coffee - it was time to press on with our day.  Allen and Lolita will soon be heading for Vancouver Island.  One month later, when they return to the mainland, we'll plan to get the four of us together for lunch or dinner.  Thanks for springing for the coffee Allen.

Back home from meeting Allen, I managed a few quick errands before changing up for our weekly men's golf round.  Tuesday's play was not the usual.  We always play on Wednesdays but the change was warranted this week because we were playing a brand new golf course.  It was a treat.

Preparing to paint the trim around the French door - on the sun room side.
I've been dedicating a few hours daily to completing the finishing work on the French door install project.  It's nearing completion.  After today I should be able to put the tools away and clean things up.
The finished look.
Once I get the taping done, the plan is to paint all the white trim.  That includes the new casing and baseboards inside the kitchen nook followed by all the window casing  and baseboard trim in the sun room.  It is intricate work that takes time......but, time I have plenty of today to complete the work.
Walls are finished and painted - with two coats.  Only require white paint for the trim.
The work awaits.....
So that is my 'Q' to end this blog and get going on the painting.

Thanks for dropping in.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Lake Cabin Was Nice....Now Back to Routine!

Our motorcycle ride to our son in law's family cabin at Barriere Lake took six hours.  We left last Tuesday morning - loaded to the gunnels - in fine summer weather.  East Barriere Lake, where the cabin is, requires a 70km ride north of Kamloops, on Highway #5, then east through the town for a good 30 minutes on paved and unpaved roads.
Approaching the snow shed, heading north on the Coquihalla Highway 5 towards Kamloops, BC
Traffic was light on the Trans Canada Highway 1, and again on Highway 5 north (The Coquihalla Highway).  Weather was perfect.
Nothing but blue skies!
We stopped for fuel (gas and lunch) then proceeded on Highway 5A (the old route to Kamloops from Merritt, BC) along Nicola Lake.  There is an old Inn, operated by the third generation family of the original owners, called the Quilchena Inn.  After a brief break there, we continue north on the two lane highway and into the city of Kamloops.  
Beautiful Quilchena Inn.    Quilchena Hotel (Quilchena, Canada) - Hotel Reviews - TripAdvisor
Just north from here is the famous Douglas Lake Ranch.  It is a large cow/calf operation with its own town, numerous cowboys who ride the range and herd the cattle.  The ranch is a big provider of jobs in the area.
Old log built church is at the turn to Douglas Lake Ranch.    Douglas Lake Ranch
Numerous lakes dot the landscape along Highway 5A - (The Nicola Trail)
Although the city of Kamloops is a nice place - with a sizable population -  we rode through without taking any photos.  Kamloops is the cross point to continue heading east on the Trans Canada Highway #1 towards Calgary, Alberta, or heading north on Highway 5 towards Jasper, Alberta.  North on Highway 5 was our route for the town of Barriere.
The beautiful, aqua coloured, Thompson River.
About 90 minutes north from Kamloops we had arrived at the cabin at East Barriere Lake.
The dock below...with most inviting waters.... was desired following our six +  hour ride.
The Barriere Lakes consist of three bodies; North Barriere, South Barriere and East Barriere (where we were).
Nestled in the mountains, this lake is quite warm and very clear. 
It didn't take long before we had changed into swimsuits before heading out for some boating, tubing and kayaking.
Son in law, Trevor, took us out for a lake tour.  We've been here numerous times now and it's always nice to boat around and enjoy the sights.
Several cabins dot the lakeside but they are not invasive.  Most of the  lake shore is not suitable for cabin development.  That's a blessing.
We were there to spend three days of R&R with our daughter Ginette, SIN Trevor, grandson Easton and Trevor's mom Sandi.
Nothing better than 'face time' with Easton.  He's better than four months old and his personality is developing very nicely.  We were looking forward to spending time with him....and that we did!
His Nana, Jeanette, bundled him up early Wednesday morning and took him down to the lake shore for some quiet time to observe and listen to the lapping waters.  His parents were still sleeping.  Sure is nice to have grandparents along to give them a good break....and a needed rest.
He's quick to smile now....and enjoys lively environments.
Easton is enjoying his very own personal pool at the edge of the dock on the lake.  Trevor watches from behind as his mom, Sandi, plays Nan to her little grandson.  The cute hat keeps the harsh sun off his head.  He enjoyed the cool lake water and had fun splashing water everywhere.

We enjoyed our own R&R - reading, relaxing by the water's edge, enjoying lovely meals with a great view and family, and taking in the pretty spectacular sunsets too.
This was our view while enjoying a lovely late evening dinner on the cabin deck.
Easton was enjoying his time too.....and he was well stimulated in this new environment!
My favourite time - very early morning with coffee in hand, a good book, and a calm lake with no noise.
A few of the cabins/docks that dot the shoreline.
Dockside view of  the cabin.
Once Jeanette was up and had secured her coffee and breakfast, we headed out for a two hour kayak trip.  The conditions were perfect.
Pushing off.

Rocky shoreline on the north side.
We're directly across the lake cabin.  Time to head across the lake and back to Terra Firma.
A fun time...and good exercise to booth.
Nan, Sandi, is feeding Easton while we prepare to take Jeanette and Ginette out for some tubing.
Great fun!  Daughter (L) Mother (R)...trying to dump each other off the tubes.
Once the two girls had had enough of tubing, it was Trevor's turn to wake board behind the boat.  He's quite good at this and managed to hang on well in spite of my attempts to dump him.

Well done Trevor!
Sheesh, I recall when I used to water ski!  Not anymore though!  Not because I don't like it or want to!  I was an excellent water and snow skier.  Years ago I was water skiing when I hit something while on a slalom ski and dislocated my left hip.  The pain was so intense, the hospital too far away, and after an emergency setting of the hip, I spent the entire summer (all 10 weeks of it) lying on a hospital bed and in traction.  No fun!!!!   That is what I never wish to experience again.  I can still tube though.
Early Thursday morning.
As with all good things in life, these fun things do end.  We  had to head back for home.  We had a great time with Easton and family.  Our kids are staying at the cabin till Sunday.
Mid-Thursday afternoon - ready to leave for the 5.5 hour ride back home.
The drive out from the cabin is quite steep. I rode up without Jeanette.  She had to hike up the road....not far...but a short, little hike nonetheless.  We headed back westward to the town of Barriere before heading south on Highway 5.
Really smooth -non paved road - that we had to endure for about 20 minutes.
About 2.5 hours later - following one break and then  another break for fuel, we stopped at the Quilchena Inn for a good break.  I watched some golfers playing the small, nine hole, golf course while looking up above in the high hills and remembering the numerous rounds played, these past three years, on the PGA rated private Sagebrush Golf Course.  Sagebrush is one tough golf course....but what a treat to have played it with PGA Golf Pro, Dick Zokol.  He is now retired from the tour and the last bit of news had him working at 'The Bear Golf and Country Club" in Kelowna, BC.  Any 'Bear' course is designed by the world famous Jack Nicklaus.                   Jack Nicklaus - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
We're mere minutes from the City of Merritt where we'll re-join the Coquihalla Highway heading south towards the coast.
Back home means getting back to work to complete the renovations we've undertaken of late.  More on that in a future blog.

I meant to write earlier but ended up with the flu (not having had one in several years).  That set me back for over 36 hours.  It was wicked!  I'm on the mend though....but I had to give up my Friday golf round on the new Pagoda Ridge Golf Course that just opened in North Langley.  It is very close to our home. My golfing partners made good on it though....based on their emails.  As luck would have it, our regular men's golf group has chosen Pagoda Ridge GC as our course for play this coming week.  Yeah for that!  Pagoda Ridge Golf Course

Well that warps up this episode of the RV Voyageurs.  It's been a great summer of fun.  No complaints!  We've accomplished a fair bit of work too.  The balance has been really fair.

Thanks for dropping by.

Monday, August 20, 2012

Renovation Continued:

We continue to work on the completion of our small renovation; that of replacing the kitchen nook window with a French door.  It's going well.
Painting the French doors.
I had to order some special hardware and some new colour match 'J Channel' to surround the French door on the vinyl siding side.  I can't complete the finishing without those two orders.  One order is expected within days and the other order will arrive on Friday.  So, I worked on painting the door, installing new gyproc (sheet rock) on the interior wall, applying patching compound, and adding some much needed finishing in the sun room proper.
New sheet rock applied - and with the 2nd coat of drywall compound.
The sun room is getting some finishing work too.  I chose to add mouldings on all surround areas.
Our weather cooled off a bit - from low 30's to more reasonable mid-20's Celsius.  That makes working far less taxing.  Mid 20's are perfect temperatures.
Cutting mouldings - baseboards, brick mold and door casings.
The exposed wood - cedar and mouldings - will be painted once the finishing work is complete.
Air nail guns make quick work for the install of mouldings and other finishings.
Sanding, and one more coat of drywall patching compound, and the wall will be prepped to receive two coats of paint.
 It wasn't all work and no play!
I got out to golf.....
....and Jeanette attended a Vancouver Canadians baseball game with friends.

.....and I got together with our regular Sunday 'Open Mike' coffee group and after we solved all of the worlds problems, I returned to continue work on the small renovation.

Tomorrow will see Jeanette and I motorcycle (or drive, if rain is forecast) to East Barriere Lake (north of Kamloops) to join our daughter, son in law and grandson, Easton, for a few days at our son in law's family cabin.  We're looking forward to that.

Thanks for dropping by.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Home Improvement 101

Well, it was time to energize the construction power tool batteries and ready to tackle another home improvement project.

The Objective:  Replace the kitchen nook window with a new French door:

New French door from a local building supply store.
Jeanette and I found the ideal French door last Monday.  It has the 'in window' venetian blinds that we were keen on.   The motorcycle trailer was ideal for delivery of the door back to our  home.
Tuesday morning:  Let the renovation begin!
Using my Fein saw, I began by cutting into the gyproc.
It didn't take too long before the gyproc (sheet rock) was off, the polythene rolled back and the insulation removed.
Electrical: It was quickly apparent that an electrician would be required.  As I had thought, the computerized sprinkler system had to be moved, a new circuit would be required for our improved electrical needs and a few other touches were required too.  I phoned our best contact Mathew, the electrician, and he agreed to leave his current jobs to accommodate us on Thursday morning.  That suited us well because I could complete the install of the French door, take Wednesday off to have lunch with a long time TV Producer friend before hitting the links for our regular Wednesday Men's Golf Night.
Late Tuesday afternoon.
Once his work day was over with, son in law Trevor dropped by our home to help me move and install the French door.  By the time he arrived, I had removed the existing 2X6 framing studs, rebuilt the framing to accommodate the new door (which was considerably wider than the existing window) build and install a new header, and cut the opening on the sun room side of the project.
It took very little time to place door, level, shim and secure it to the new framing.
OK.  This project is taking shape. Following the needed electrical work, the finishing work will commence.
Good improvement.  The sprinkler system control unit has been moved and it now needs electrical intervention to clean it up with new wiring.
This renovation will open the sun room to the kitchen/family room/nook on nice summer days.
The sprinkler system had to be moved and re-wired.
Two electrical plugs/circuits were relocated.
Mathew, the electrician, was at our home early Thursday morning, as promised, and the work began in earnest.  He made quick work with some complex re-wiring and within three hours, his work was done.
Turning off the required breakers to move a couple of circuits.
Electricians are like magicians, especially in renovation work.  They can make complex installs look magically easy once the tough work is done.  Mathew is especially gifted at complex tasks.
The last circuit is nearing completion.  This is one of the new receptacles in the sun room.
With the electrical completed, I began the task of finishing the install of the French door.  That required some fitting tricks to allow the doors to open and close easily.  Once that was accomplished, the door was secured.  The insulation and vapour barrier were replaced.  Now it's time to focus on completing the finishing. 
Out on the back patio working the table saw.
It is now Friday morning and I am soon to run off to the local building supply store for one sheet of gyproc (sheet rock), mouldings, brick mold, door locking hardware, paint, and other necessities to complete the project.

Door works perfectly.
It seems I chose the hottest summer days to work on this project though. Our temperatures hovered between 28 and 33 degrees.  I ingested buckets and buckets of water while sweating away working.  No regrets though!  It's fun to accomplish another of our planned home improvements.

Thanks for dropping by.