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Archived Blogs Archived Blogs: 2014 January
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Sun Jan 26 00:00:00 MST 2014 - 2014 Kitchen MakeOver

Our garburator started leaking water from its housing. This is on top of another water leak from our laundry washer several weeks prior. It seems like these appliances are talking to each other! But my misery was not over yet -- the new garburator was quite large that I had to completely redo all the plumbing!

While we were at this, we thought of doing a kitchen makeover. Might as well! So, out it went with the old faucet and in with a new Touch-control pull-down faucet. No fooling around with handles anymore! All you have to do is just touch it, or elbow it, or however you want to touch it - to turn it on or off. Several years ago, I just could not justify buying this kind of faucet at all, let alone a very expensive one! A pricey $400! This time after my wife wanted to go all the way, I reluctantly picked it up. And what do you know? Next time I knew I was already paying for it. As it turned out, I kinda like it!

NOTE: This new garburator is very, very quiet; you can hardly tell when it is grinding.


Sun Jan 19 23:58:26 MST 2014 - 2014 - Laundry Room Makeover

I've been putting off this work. Several weeks ago, our laundry washer just decided to spill all its guts while on a rinse cycle. And what a mess it created! Some water made it through the basement, the closet right beside it, soaked all the baseboards, cabinets, and of course an adjoining hardwood floor as well!

So no more maniana, just have to bite the bullet and start working on this room. But first, we gotta get rid of these two old pair of steel boxes, I mean Duet -- actually, that's what Whirlpool call these two! Thought of listing it. It sold just within 15 minutes of posting! Going good so far... No. I am now pressed to finish this project asap. I now have 2 new units sitting in the living room waiting for its new home!

First order of business: rip all the vinyl flooring and tile it instead. Purchased these 12" x 24" porcelain tiles. Quite thick and heavy. Unfortunately, my existing wet tile cutter took 15 minutes just to cut an inch! Bought a fairly expensive diamond-bit blade and that guy cut the tiles like it was a piece of plywood! This time around with tiling, I thought of putting in a strip of mosaic tiles for accent.

Second order of business: replace laundry sink cabinet, and also replace the countertops to match the cabinets, the floor and the paint! Seriously. I brought in 5 countertops that I thought would match but as soon as I lay them against everything, they were way off.

Third order of business: reinstall baseboards, caulk and repaint

Fourth order of business: seal the grout

Fifth order of business: install transitions between tiles and hardwood

Sixth order of business: replace sink plumbing (that drain coupler started leaking too when I put them back together!)

Finally: customize a little piece of cupboard because of its odd width (can't find any that would fit)


Tue Jan 7 05:07:31 MST 2014 - At Orlando International Airport (MCO)

...heading home! via Los Angeles. Will be travelling all day today...

Mon Jan 6 00:00:00 MST 2014 - 06Jan - Orlando, Florida

We thought of checking out another Premium Outlet in Vineland Avenue and discovered it as a better alternative to the Kissimmee location - way less crowd and still with the same choices we have in Kissimmee.

Location - Orlando, Florida


Sun Jan 5 00:00:00 MST 2014 - 05Jan - Back At Orlando

We're back in Orlando for few more days. Planned to hit the Premium Outlets for the day but was greeted by something even more important than anything else -- writings in the sky by a man who dedicated his life to bring messages in the sky through his small plane!

Location - Orlando, Florida


Sat Jan 4 11:29:00 MST 2014 - Day 10 - Puerto Plata, Dominication Republic - Last Day at Resort

Last day at the resort. Had to meet Jose today to say our goodbyes and leave him our gift as a heartfelt gratitude for making us at home.

We had previously booked a 2-way shuttle through Expedia for $US40, and also had reconfirmed it with the people at the resort. We were fortunate to have done this because taxi/shuttle for just one way was already at $US35!

Location: Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic


Fri Jan 3 08:25:00 MST 2014 - Day 9 - Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

Our tourguide-friend, Jose, have arranged fresh catch of Lobsters today. We will be dining out of the resort today. And as usual, he said he'll be bringing young coconuts for desert! He's such a wonderful person!

Location: Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic


Thu Jan 2 00:00:00 MST 2014 - Day 8 - Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic - Fort San Felipe

City/Fort San Felipe Tour. Our tour-guide friend managed to arrange a taxi for us to tour the city, and see the day to day life of the Dominican people, the rich and the poor, through city ways and backend streets, unto a typical town and barrios, even dropped by his place and his cousins' before taking off again to local shops and factories, particularly the country's biggest rum factory, Brugal, and then to the historic Fort San Felipe.

One day is not enough for sure to learn the Dominican culture but one thing stood up, Dominicans pride themselves on their hospitality. They will go out of their way to make a guest welcome and comfortable. Family ties play an important role in their lives, and when possible, family and extended family live together or closeby. However, Dominicans and Filipinos share a common trait -- the art of imperfecting punctuality! Showing up between 15 to 30 minutes late is still considered on time! It is the Dominican time!

Locations: Brugal Rum Factory & Fort San Felipe - Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

Wed Jan 1 00:00:00 MST 2014 - Day 7 - Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic - New Year's Day

New Year's Day and away from home!

First day of the year. Slow down. Recollect. Re-energize and smell the roses! And that's it, no more no less...

And to start our New Year, we had booked a second followup massage today. Yes!

Location: Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic

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