Of course, this also means that I did nothing constructive last night at all.
(Side note: funniest thing I heard this morning was W trying to say "nanotechnology". He was pronouncing it phonetically. He did however get out "baccalaureate" quite smoothly. This was funnier than a Swedish grandmother being attacked by a beaver.)
I'm pushing into a different mental space lately, turning more selfish (or perhaps self-centered). I think I've been spreading myself too thin, and I really need to retract my psticky little pseudopods to concentrate on the more practical aspects of my life.
That will probably make me even more boring than usual. Psuck it up.
Inevitability is inevitable.
The Big Broken Box™ is weighing heavily right now, certainly; this is no surprise. Dogside is that I'm out of money, and may have to do another home improvement loan to get the materials in time, even when I'm doing most of the work myself.
I still like the look of cultured stone veneer, but it's freakin' expensive.
There is an option wherein I actually cast my own stone veneer. Since I'm something of an old hand at molding and casting, this is a rather attractive option. I can actually purchase ready-made molds or make my own. At this point, the ready-made molds are winning: a starter kit of RTV silicone molds (40 square feet of face molds, 3 linear feet of corner molds) is $1500, and casting them is cheap: figure 68 cents per square foot, about a tenth of the price of buying the precast. Coloring is done with iron oxide pigments, available at 'Nards. The molds are reusable and durable: an expected 7-year life with daily castings (it's kind of designed for a small startup business).
If I make my own molds, I first have to find that much stone (or carve it from foam). Then I have to buy a large quantity of silicone rubber. Frankly, I don't think I can buy just the rubber for that price.
Quickie breakdown: If I do a five-foot high stone veneer across the face of the porch and on the sides, it's about 45 linear feet, or 225 sq. ft.-- at $6.50/sq.ft., that's $1462.50 just for the stone-- and I think you have to buy it in 100 sq. ft. increments (shooting that up to $1950.00). With the molds, I can do a lot more stone veneer should I choose without a huge additional expense other than the time spent mixing and casting, as well as making only what I need. Plus, should I choose to, I can sell the molds at a later time, or make stone products for other people. And oh, yeah, I can cast foam into the same molds in case I wanted to use them to make lightweight set pieces.
The repeatability thing kinda makes me waffly, but consider that a single stone from the mold can be placed right side up or upside down doubles the apparent unique look, plus with different pigment batches and different surrounding stones, the look becomes a lot more random.
And I can do custom pigmentation.
This also gives me an idea for something that's been bothering me. It will take more research to figure out exactly how to do it, but I already have an idea.
I 'Я' made of teh awesome.