We finally hired someone to help us work on one of our projects. He was an acquaintance of ours, as he used to be our neighbor and his wife works where I work, but in another department. They seemed like nice people and he had been in business a long time, so we hired him to do some drywall work for us and help us round up other trades people to do a bit of wiring and plumbing.

The trades people were fine. We were able to move our washer and dryer out to what was before an unusable sun room. We removed all but three windows, and replaced those. We also put in a new door that actually seals.

Our first indication of a problem was when we came home one day and realized that he had drywalled over a board that had a rotted place in it.

Then, another day, we smelled cigarette smoke in the house, and none of us smoke.

He wanted paid in advance for the work, and, stupidly, I did. There was no final walk through, so that we could complain about the lousy job he did on the drywall. There is tape pulling up. He made joints by the windows. The corners have odd patchy bits. In short, it looks like I did it myself. Actually, my drywall is better than that, and I do not consider myself competent to do drywall.

We've spent most of the month of September cleaning up his mess and trying to patch up the work to make it look right. I am not happy.

People have asked us time and again why we've done all our renovation work ourselves, with the help of my dad and kids. With the exception of skilled trades, every time we've hired someone to do carpentry work, we have been disappointed to the point of feeling cheated.


Every renovation that I have undertaken has included some sort of fabric. There are curtains or slipcovers or something.

Today, Labor Day, I thought would be a good day to go sewing machine shopping. Turns out, not really. None of the dealers are open on Labor Day-- one of the big sale days of the year. So I did a little poking around online and came up with the names of a few, even if they aren't open.

Sewing Machine Express

9101 W Markham St, # 20 Little Rock AR 72205

Stitchin Post

1520 Macon Dr Little Rock AR 72211

Sew Much More

100 E 13th St North Little Rock AR 72114

To be fair, these are open, but are not selling the kinds of machines that I am looking at: 

Jo-Ann Fabric And Craft

4613 John F Kennedy Blvd
North Little Rock, AR 72116-7310
Tel: 501-771-0314

11400 W Markham St
Little Rock, AR 72211-2806
(501) 312-1482


4126 E McCain Blvd
North Little Rock, AR 72117-2523 
(501) 945-7787

Cool Plumbing

Normally, plumbing is something that I try to avoid thinking about. I either whine until my dad does it, or I actually break down and hire someone.

But this? This may make me take an interest in plumbing: Perma Flow P-Trap

Unlike most plumbing, this one is see-through, so you can see whether or not it is clogged. It even has a clean out knob, so it dislodges debris that could clog the drain.


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