Hood Vent

One thing I had to finish before my awesome drywalling party was to install the vent in the wall for my oven hood. I had to drill a 6″ hole in my brick house.


The hole in the insulation is the size of the hole that I needed for the vent. Note the 1″ hole in the upper right. That was the size of the drill bit that I had. So I was going to be making a lot of little holes to make the big hole.

Bizarrely, some bricks were quite easy to drill through and others proved to be impossible. You might not be able to tell, but I had to move the position of the vent up a little since I couldn’t drill through one brick on the bottom. It took a little over an hour, but I finally got this.


I also felt like Wile E. Coyote from a Road Runner cartoon where he kept vibrating after he quit holding on to a jack hammer.

Next I had to get the piece of vent in it. I mixed up some mortar and tried to fill in as much as I could.


Then I got up on a ladder on the outside of the house and pushed the pipe and cover through the hole.


Lastly, I took more mortar and tried to fill in all the gaps around the vent cap. I think I did an ok job, but will go out and check again when I have a taller ladder.


In classifying jobs that I did or did not enjoy, this one falls into the category of something I’d rather not do again. It was hard, difficult, noisy and messy. But I’m glad it’s done and I think my vent is going to look great.


Finally got the pictures up from the drywalling party. They are here. I owe my niece Abby a movie for being a fabulous photographer. Words cannot express my gratitude to everyone who came and helped out. I love you all more than you can possibly know. I got most of you to sign the back of one of my cabinets to be a part of my kitchen forever. I’ll try to catch those who didn’t sign it before I hang the cabinet, but if I don’t it’s ok. You all are the people who mean the most to me in the world.



It’s been a while since I posted, but not for lack of activity. In fact, I can’t remember a time when I have been so busy. Things got so much out of control that I think it contributed to me getting sick earlier in the week. So I decided to take some action and start saying no to some things.

The good news is that the drywall party was great. I am close to a fantastic group of people who all came over and helped me out. I have pictures that I have yet to take off my camera and post. They’re coming soon. My brother got me someone to do the taping, so that was finished the week after the drywall was hung. I finished priming everything yesterday and even pulled wire through all the conduit. Yes, I should have painted before I did that, but I’m an idiot and like doing things out of order. I’ve been looking up dishwashers and stoves and think that I might have to move the outlet for the dishwasher. Not far, but according to the installation directions, it’s currently in the wrong place. Shouldn’t be hard to move since we didn’t put drywall on that part of the breakfast island. It doesn’t need it, since it will be behind a cabinet and dishwasher.

Aside from the chaos at home, work was a little intense as well. But things seem to be slowing down now, which makes me very happy. There are a few things I want to learn and I’d like to have a little time to do that. Tonight, I’ve been reading up on gnuplot, which I think should become my goto plotting program. It really makes nice plots and I think it will be a very useful tool to have in my arsenal.

So, yes, life has been insane of late. But the other thing I’ve noticed is that I’ve been really, really happy. I think that’s mostly because I can finally see the kitchen coming to an end. And it’s not so much that I’ll have a new kitchen, which will be nice. But it’s the sense of accomplishment that I’m enjoying. I wanted to try to do this, as much as I could, by myself. And I think I’ve succeeded. Hopefully, I haven’t done anything stupid, but you can’t fail if you don’t try.


I don’t know what I did to my thumb, but yesterday when I woke up, it was very sore. And as of today, it was definitely swollen. The picture below sort of shows my issue. Though, after a day of advil and keeping it cool with snow from outside, it has gotten a little better. At least it doesn’t hurt nearly as much as it hurt this morning. I can move it a bit more and I think it’s a little less swollen. It’ll be interesting to see how it reacts to all the drilling through brick that I’ll be doing tomorrow.


I don’t really care that much that I hurt my thumb. I know it will get better. But what bugs me is I have no idea what I did. I don’t remember banging it or hurting it in any way. But, clearly, I did.

Open DNS with Windows 7

I had a problem with a windows 7 computer that was resolving dns.

yo:~ $ dig @ coldandheartless.com

; <<>> DiG 9.8.5-P1 <<>> @ coldandheartless.com
; (1 server found)
;; global options: +cmd
;; Got answer:
;; ->>HEADER<<- opcode: QUERY, status: NOERROR, id: 50657
;; flags: qr rd ra; QUERY: 1, ANSWER: 2, AUTHORITY: 0, ADDITIONAL: 0

;coldandheartless.com.		IN	A

coldandheartless.com.	137	IN	A
coldandheartless.com.	137	IN	A

;; Query time: 4 msec
;; WHEN: Wed Mar 12 13:54:44 CDT 2014
;; MSG SIZE  rcvd: 70

This shouldn't happen. To turn it off, go to Windows Firewall and then Allow a program or feature through Windows Firewall. Uncheck "Internet Connection Sharing" and you should be good.