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Mountainous New Mexico 

While visiting friends in Las Cruces, New Mexico, I was surprised at how many mountains are in the area.  

Below is a picture of the Dona Ana Mountains.  

Dona Ana Mountains, New Mexico


From our friends house, we can see the Organ Mountains in the distance and the Las Cruces valley in the foreground.  

Organ Mountains, Las Cruces Valley


Quite pretty, don’t you think?

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Remodeling The Master Bathroom

When we first moved into our house 4 1/2 years ago, I knew that the master bathroom needed updating.  And for the last 3 1/2 years, we have had many contractors come to our house to give us estimates but we didn’t feel comfortable with any of them nor with their estimates.

Basically what we wanted done was to have everything taken out and and all new items put in.  Simple enough, no? The problem we kept having was that the estimates we received ran from $34K to $40K. For that, we could have bought half a house in St. Paul.

Then last year, the jacuzzi tub started leaking into the downstairs family room.  Not good. After the insurance company came out and assured us the ceiling was dry, we decided to wait until we remodeled the bathroom to have the problem fixed.

And  so our remodel project begins.

The dumpster arrived first thing Monday morning and within an hour our contractor, Tom, showed up.

Dumpster

Dumpster

Here are some “before” pictures of the bathroom ~

"Before" Bathroom Remodel

“Before” Bathroom Remodel

Originally we received estimates to have the soffit over the tub removed but were told it would cost $5k to do that. So, instead we decided to put in a rectangular tub but at an angle to match the soffit. But in comes our contractor Tom who told us previous contractors’ estimates were way off.  The large soffit could come down but the long one on the side would have to stay as it’s a beam.

"Before" Bathroom Remodel

“Before” Bathroom Remodel

"Before" Bathroom Remodel

“Before” Bathroom Remodel

"Before" Bathroom Remodel

“Before” Bathroom Remodel

And thus Day One of the bathroom remodel began which mostly consisted of gutting the room.

Gutting the Bathroom

Gutting the Bathroom

Gutting the Bathroom

Gutting the Bathroom

The closet door on the right will also be replaced.

Gutting the Bathroom

Gutting the Bathroom

Vanity, sink, faucets, lights … all gone.

Gutting the Bathroom

Gutting the Bathroom

Then we came upon two surprises.  The first was tucked away underneath the bathtub in a corner.  It was a duct that provides heat underneath the tub.  A little odd, no?  Our contractor decided to leave it there.

Heat Duct Under Tub

Heat Duct Under Tub

Next, I was called upstairs to take a look at a small thin tube that ran from underneath the tub to under the shower to … ??? We’re not quite sure, but the tube looks like one that attaches to our hot water heater in the basement. When we had the water heater replaced, those contractors didn’t know what the tube was for either so they just kept it there.

(Not the best picture … )

Gutting the Bathroom

Gutting the Bathroom

I was surprised how quickly two men were able to gut a bathroom.

Hopefully this will be a painless remodel.

Day 2 of the bathroom remodel.

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An Autumn Lake of the Isles Walk

On a crisp early October day, a friend and I took a walk around the Lake of the Isles in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

It was hard not to notice all of the high-end houses in this area, but the lake is what caught my attention because being around water brings my heart peace.

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

Lake of the Isles, Minneapolis, Minnesota

The city is close by but, outside of glancing at it, the noises can’t be heard.  So peaceful ~

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