Plays Well With Others...

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Location: Dallas, Texas, United States
E-mail me at: longhorntwice -at- hotmail -dot- com... All writings and photographs on this blog are my work. Give credit where credit is due.
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Nov 16, 2004

Pocket Change
Do you have a jar of pennies in your house? You should. My parents started collecting their loose change for me in high school. They would put everything except quarters in a coffee tin in a cabinet under a counter. During college, they continued collecting coins. At one point, I decided to cash out. There was one large coffee can. I earned $80 that day when I rolled them all. Not a bad haul. My parents started new cans. They still collect the change. They now put the cans of coins in the cabinet under the window seat in my old bedroom. Last time I checked, I think there were 5 cans and jars of coins. The coins are still for me. Even though I am well on my own now. I am not sure why they started collecting the coins, or why for that matter they decided to give them to me, but it sure is fun to be the recipient!

Here is the story of another penny collector. He has a few more than me though. 1,407,550 pennies to be precise. That's $14,000. He's been collecting them for 34 years!

posted by Ty @ 11/16/2004 | 0 comments
Super Ty! Plumber Extraordinaire!
This weekend I undertook a project of mamoth proportions. Since I moved into my house my kitchen faucet has had issues. It started as a mild one. You had to turn the handle just so to get it to turn off. Then you had to be even more precise. Then the handle would only turn off by being pushed in the wrong direction. Then it wouldn't completely turn off at all. It was dripping, and with every drip I was hearing my water bill climb up. So I decided to replace it. I called my father and asked for his assistance (he had done this once before). Then I called my contractor (family friend) and asked him if we messed up could he fix it. He said of course, and off I went to Lowe's. I found an awesome faucet. It's stainless steel instead of chrome, and the sprayer comes out of the arch of the faucet. It's not one of those bulky ones though. Only the nozzle head comes out so it looks and feels kind of like the industrial faucets in restaurants. It looks like this:

The little flaired part at the end of the faucet pulls down and is a sprayer. It rocks!

So on my first trip to Lowe's I got the faucet and a good flashlight, because the pluming guy said I probably wouldn't need the Basin Wrench, and why waste the money. First I tried turning off the water. The hot water handle wouldn't budge. I was turning and turning and finally...the handle broke. I figured it was still operable with a wrench, but the handle was gone. Then started on the faucet bolts. Of course, when I tried to get the bolts off it turned out I did need the basin wrench, so Saturday morning before my father came over, I went back to the store (TRIP 2), only I went to Home Depot this time because it was closer. I bought the basin wrench and new water likes because I had also found out the previous night that the water lines were copper and welded on. I headed back and met my father at my house.

He took the first attempt, and managed to get one bolt off, but he did so by breaking it. It was apparently rusted all the way through and just broke right off. Then he went to work on the second one. It took a few minutes, but no real problems there. Then we pulled the old faucet out and went to put the new one in. With it resting in place, we tried to add the water lines. They weren't long enough. Back to Home Depot (TRIP 3). I bought longer lines and we were back at the house in 20 minutes. The new lines were long enough but the didn't fit on the wall valve. Back to Home Depot (TRIP 4). The Plumbing Guy was at lunch. A substitute Plumbing guy tried to help me. But we couldn't find a converter for the line. He finally decided my only option was to replace the valve. I bought two different ones because I wasn't sure which would work. Back to home. The old valves were sautered. I couldn't fix it. By this time both my parents were at my house, and we were going getting very hungry as it was now 2:30 in the afternoon. We decided lunch was in order. We tried to go to Krystal's but the line was UNBELIEVEABLE. It was literally around the block for the drive thru, and the line inside wound around the restaurant and popped out the door. So we wound up at Buffalo Wild Wings. After lunch my parents left me. All of us thinking the contractor would have to be called.

I was determined though. I went back to Home Depot (TRIP 5) and found the plumbing guy. He worked with me and came up with a crazy solution that required a second hose and a connector to be attached to the first hose. He said, "this should work. Unless your valve is beveled." Crap, I thought. I had no idea if it was. So I took the new supplies and headed home. I started working only to immediately find out, the valve was beveled. Damn.
I took pictures with my digital camera of the valves, and the old copper water lines. Back to Home Depot (TRIP 6). I showed the plumbing guy the pictures. That REALLY helped. This time he gave me a converter costing $1.29. It, of course, worked. It was now 6pm. I turned the water on and voila!

I can now install a faucet. If you ever need one, I now know more about faucets than I EVER thought possible!

But all the work was totally worth it! It is so pretty!!!

posted by Ty @ 11/16/2004 | 0 comments