I’m floored

We have floors again.

Well, we’ve had floors all along. It’s not like we ever lived on the edge of a bottomless pit. But we recently had new flooring put in, and I am pleased that (a) it is over and (b) my wife is happy with the results.

We have lived in our house for more than two years. But we leased for the first two, and just recently purchased it from the previous owner. Since we were leasing, we hadn’t done a lot of interior work because, let’s face it, not many folks remodel other people’s homes.

We had carpets in most of the downstairs, along with tile in the kitchen and hardwood in a hallway. My wife wanted a hardwood laminate throughout the downstairs. Works for me.

I’ll spare you the details of the task of picking out the flooring, mainly because it was me letting my wife pick out what she wanted. And that’s not because she doesn’t want my input. It’s because I don’t really care what the flooring is. You could cover my floors in gym mats and I probably wouldn’t notice.

My wife and I went into the flooring place to set up the installation schedule. Jeff, our salesman, said he could do it the following Wednesday. “You mean the Wednesday before Christmas?” I asked. He assured me that was no problem whatsoever, and they’d be in and out before Christmas.

I wasn’t totally sold on the possibility of having our Christmas morning be amidst construction debris, but Jeff assured us it was fine.

Deep breath.

The night before the installers were to arrive, my wife and I set about prepping the house. We moved anything that was not needed downstairs upstairs. Which means we moved 439 pairs of my daughter’s shoes up to her room.

My wife then said, “We need to vacuum before they get here.”

I responded, “You know they are tearing up all of this carpet and hauling it away tomorrow, right?”

My wife looked at me. With one of those looks. I went and got the vacuum.

Our next move was to relocate our small dog’s bed upstairs. Our dogs are exceptionally helpful when workers are around, to the point that they will often maintain physical contact with, say, someone trying to install our cable. Thus, when workers are over, we move them up to our room.

Maddux the Stoic is a boxer with a great big crate he sleeps in at night, but he’s also fine without it. We can just move him upstairs sans bed and he’s fine sleeping at the foot of our bed. Murphy the Excitable Dachshund, however, when moved upstairs, just wanders our room looking for something of familiarity. To your bed, sir.

The workers arrived around 8:30 the next morning. By about 9, it looked as if my house had been simultaneously ransacked and hit with a grenade. All of the furniture was stacked together in a small pile on one side of the house. Our kitchen floor was now just a collection of pried up broken tile pieces. This is fine, I said. This will all work out before Christmas, I said. My wife had gone into the office by then. She texted me and asked me how it was going. I sent her a picture of the kitchen. “This will all work out before Christmas,” I said.

They then began cutting up and removing the carpet. They did not tell me how nice it looked being freshly vacuumed, but I am sure they noticed.

I decided I would do what contractors most appreciate and get out of their way for a while.

I came back a few hours later to see how they were coming with the undoing of my house. I walked in the door and there was … a new floor. On like half the house. I sent a picture to my wife. I am not sure she believed it.

They finished that evening with all but the den left. They wrapped that up the next morning in a few hours. Job done, start to finish, in just over a day. Jeff was right. Never doubt Jeff.

The floors look great, and my wife is over the moon with how it looks. The only negative comments we have received are from the dogs, who have made it very clear that this new ice-like surface we have installed means they must seek refuge on couches or in their beds. They would have really preferred we had gone with gym mats.

Mike Gibbons was born and raised in Aiken, S.C. A graduate of the University of Alabama, he now lives in Mt. Pleasant. You can e-mail him at or follow him on Twitter @StandardMike.


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