Master vanity renovation

I replaced the old, nasty vanity and sink in our master bedroom with a new (to us) double sink. It took me forever to do, since I’m not so great at texturing and plumbing, but my wife was understanding with the slow progress. 🙂

I had gotten quotes from a few vendors and contractors and was finding this job would cost at least $2500!

So I scoured Craigslist for a long time until the right one popped up. The seller was about 2 hours away from me and needed to get rid of it ASAP. They informed me that it was going on the curb for free a few days after I inquired about it (they had a move-out deadline).

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Surround Sound Debug

For some reason, this keeps happening to me. I must be doing it wrong. But I’ve either been too stubborn or too distracted to find the better way to do it.

I’ve installed surround sound wiring into my abodes at least five times (twice in my bachelor days at two different apartments, and thrice in my married days in all three of Sarah’s and my mutual houses. So I have a fair amount of experience with fishing wires down walls and into ceiling joists, cutting in low-voltage single-gang electrical boxes, and wiring up multi-channel audio speakers.

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Dyson vaccum fix

Is your Dyson Animal vacuum cleaner sucking, like mine was?  There’s a good chance you can fix it cheaply.

In my case, the vacuum head — in Dyson speak, it’s the “soleplate” — was not seating down fully on the floor.

Because the soleplate wasn’t fully flush with the contact surface, the suction was greatly reduced.  Here’s the sad thing: I knew this for some time.  Like years.  And I never got around to doing anything about it.  I was just vacuuming in mediocrity.  Well, I finally did something about it today.

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IKEA mini-kitchen mods

One of my daughter’s most beloved toys is her IKEA DUKTIG mini-kitchen. It was a gift from the grandparents, and it’s one that she’s never tired of. Iris is a lot like her mommy, and baking and cooking wonderful savory foods are some of the many things they love to do.

The only problem with her mini kitchen is that it lacked a few fundamental similarities to Mommy’s big kitchen. For instance, her little oven door opened the wrong way. And there was no light in the oven that came on when she opened the door. This was just no good. Time to get modding.

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If a tree falls in your backyard…

A few weeks ago, a mighty wind blew.  It toppled a portion of one of our blue spruce trees, nearly destroying my neighbor’s garage and power line.  So it, and its brethren, had to go.

I was sad at first, these trees being at least 50 years old.  But I warmed to the idea of having lots of firewood and a fresh clean slate of a backyard.  So below are before (circa 2008) and after photos.

Catastrophic Failure

A fluorescent light fixture in our house went out.  After replacing the bulb, the light still didn’t turn on.  So I figured I had nothing to lose by ripping apart the ballast.  What I quickly discovered scared me.

Cabinet child lock

My 1-year old is a curious kid.  She prides herself in breaking into highly secure bank vaults, er cabinets.  In particular, she’s taken a liking to our buffet which houses both china and liquor (neither of which are kid-approved items) behind two toddler-level doors.  So I had to come up with a way to keep her out.