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Day 6 I've done the math. Averaging out between $8.00/hr employees and the $15.00/hr employees, the amount of money we've spent at Home Depot so far would be enough for over 130 man/woman hours. That's 3 full time employees for a week, or 17 employees for an eight hour shift. I wonder why none of them have thanked me yet? Maybe I should tell them. When I am shopping tonight I will find 17 orange clad workers and affix a "Paid" sticker, like the kind you get on grocery items too big for bagging, on their foreheads. I'm sure they will be overwhelmed with gratitude once they know who it is that is paying them today. It was the strangest thing to not go to HD last night. It is the first time this week we haven't been there at least once. I wonder if they missed me? They didn't even call. I'm sure we'll make up for it tonight, though. I'm curious about this drill bit that's a couple feet long and flexible. Its supposed to be able to access the hard to reach places in the walls, around corners, etc. My friend Jay just pointed out that this seems impossible, and I had a hard time thinking of a suitable argument with that logic. Either way, I'm going to buy one tonight and see what happens. If it works, so much the better for installing my air conditioner in a room that has no power outlets, and if it doesn't then I'll have something else to write about tomorrow. I also need to go to Lowe's to find a better selection of range hoods, as HD only had one model in our size (24 inches). I feel guilty about changing hardware stores, hopefully no one will find out. We are having some difficulty deciding what to name each room. This probably doesn't seem like much of a problem, and the names usually present themselves naturally, but it is really not working for us yet. There is the entry way, a small room on the front that may have been a deck at one point that now has walls, and then the living room, where we are painting. Next behind that is a room about the same size as the living room, which we will probably put more couches in, with our television and video game stuff. We've started with "TV Room," but that is just lame. Occasionally I call it "Dining Room," because our friends' almost identical house next door has a dining room right there. Since there are no power outlets there yet, I'm considering also "Amish Room" as an interim solution. You may not think its a big deal, but sometimes it can be very confusing. "Where is my screwdriver?" "Its in the...the room...with the...stuff in it...and the screwdriver." Maybe I'll just number them all. "I left it in #6." Very efficient and super nerdy. You can insert your own joke about the bathroom being #2 at this time. The paint is looking great in the living room, thanks to the efforts of my wife and her crack team: The Reverend Mark Tindall, Marti "Don't Call Me Marty" McHenry, and Paula "Don't Call Me Marty Either, I mean, it doesn't even make sense" Biemann. The wall over the fireplace had some significant plaster damage, perhaps due to moisture coming in around the chimney. The previous owner had patched things on and around the chimney using roofing tar. If this sounds like a bad idea to you, you would be correct. The logic at work here is obviously "well, the chimney is on the roof, and I'm on the roof, and this tar stuff is on the roof, so why not?" So the place above the mantle where we removed broken up plaster has been layered with approximately nine billion layers of joint compound. This is the same joint compound that is now on my work shoes, which I wear to my day job, because they are the only non-opened-toed non-Birkenstock shoes I own currently. Although the wall looks much better, and is primed and painted, and looking reasonably inconspicuous, there are parts of it that make a crackly noise when I press my hand on it. It doesn't take a professional contractor to know the solution here: Stop pressing on it. Eventually I'll probably rip out that section and put drywall there, but for now we will cover it in paint. The paint is a dark red, officially called "Deep Garnet", or "Mister Garnet". Mark estimates that it will take 5 coats of paint to get it right. 5 coats. I don't even own 5 coats, but my walls apparently need it. We have two so far, will get another one done tonight, and maybe two tomorrow, if it dries fast enough. Saturday we'll be moving furniture in, and I'd really like to have it done by then. In other news from the world of electrical work, of the four outlets I wired up the other night I rewired three of them last evening. Two of them had too much excess wire inside the boxes, and so the receptacles didn't quite fit in. I had to remove them, cut the wires shorter, and rewire them. The third happened to be the wrong receptacle type. We bought four 20 amp plugs at HD a few nights ago, but apparently one of them was a 15 amp in disguise. So I am batting .250 in receptacle installation, but on the bright side that means I now have done this 7 times, up from my original 4, so I almost doubled my experience in doing the kitchen wiring. The big excitement for me last night was tape fishing the light fixtures in the kitchen ceiling. A professional electrician probably would have ripped out large sections of the ceiling, place the wires, and then call his finish carpenter to replace the ceiling. Since the electricians are Lauren and I, and the finish carpenters are also Lauren and I, we decided not to take that approach. Our technique involves a steady hand, constant silent prayer, and Lauren's triple jointed middle finger. We had to drill two small holes at intermediate points to jump over some beams in the ceiling, so there will be more patching to do. When the end of the tape is within view Lauren sticks his finger up into the ceiling and makes funny faces for a few minutes, and then pulls the tape out. I don't even know what he is doing in there but it seems to work. Tonight we have one more outlet to install in the cupboard, and then we should be able to install the breakers and get power running to the kitchen. I am pretty tired, so I apologize if this update is not up to the standards to which you have become accustomed. I'll try and get someone to do something funny tonight so I can tell the story, and failing that I will begin making things up. I am taking tomorrow off from "work" so who knows when I'll be near the computer to write over the weekend. Patrick and I will be making trips with the rental van full of furniture tomorrow. We were not able to get a truck, because its college moveout time and they were booked up a month in advance, so we're going to require more trips with a smaller vehicle. Thanks for reading

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