February 23, 2012

Our Kitchen Floor Is Here!

9" wide yellow pine plank flooring. Shipping weight was 500 lbs.

Finally. Doesn't look like a lot, does it? That's 206 square feet of 9 inch wide yellow pine tongue & groove plank floor boards. Seemed to take forever to arrive and for awhile, we didn't think it would arrive at all. We ordered it online from Lumber Liquidators (which for some reason I always want to call "Liquid Lumberdators."). The product reviews were excellent, and so was the price; $1.99 per square foot. Plus we got free shipping by picking it up at our area store.

Wide planks like this are not usually kept in stock and must be special ordered. This means a long lead time, usually 6 to 8 weeks, though this company makes no promises. We made the order in December, and kept an eye on their online order tracking. When the status never changed from "order accepted," Dan finally called and got an expected delivery date.

That date came and went so he called again. Over the weeks we went though two more postponements, and by that time he was a tad frustrated because no one could give him any clue as to the actual status of our floor. There were always five orders ahead of us. While we waited we worked on all the little kitchen projects we could do, but eventually we got to the point where installing the floor was next.

In the end, persistence paid off. Not because they were tired of him bugging them, it just took getting the right customer service rep; someone who was willing to look into it. Thanks to one gal being willing to make a few phone calls, the situation was resolved promptly. Turns out it was in stock all along at another store. They even delivered it to our door at no extra cost!

Unfortunately, situations like this always reflect on the company. Any of the other folks we talked to could have made inquiries for us too, but for whatever reason, didn't. Sometimes a company is grossly mismanaged, but sometimes the problem exists at another level. Have you ever looked at an empty shelf in a store and asked an employee if they had any more in the back? How many times have you immediately been told no? I have, and then turned around and asked another employee the same question. That person was willing to help and went and got it! What does that tell you?

Personally I think it has to do with a work ethic that has long been lost. Or perhaps people just don't know how to take the initiative anymore. These are things that have to be taught, they aren't caught. We taught our kids a work ethic. They had chores and responsibilities because this is how the family functions; everyone helps out according to ability. That meant that as they got older, work load and responsibilities increased. They got an allowance as well, but this was not payment for their chores. We did this because I did not want them to grow up thinking that they should get something in return for everything they did. Helping others was a character trait I wanted to develop. We help others because it is the right thing to do, not in expectation of getting something in return. If they shirked on their chores, their allowance wasn't cut, but there were other consequences (more work and loss of privileges.)

They got an allowance because they were members of the family and because families share resources. They were however, expected to tithe from it, and put some in savings. With the remainder, they could do as they pleased. While we never cut their allowance as punishment, it did increase as they got older and willingly took on more responsibility. In looking at the kind of adults my kids are now, I have no regrets about how we raised them. They are willing, responsible, hard working adults who handle their money well.

Good grief. How in the world did I get here from there.

Anyway, yellow pine is actually classified as a hardwood, which is good for my kitchen, considering what a klutz I am. The next step will be to find a place inside for it, so it can acclimatize to the house. Then we can get to work putting it down.

Next: problems preparing the old floor


Anonymous said...

It's beautiful Leigh:)

Carolyn said...

Can't wait to see the in-progress and "finished" pictures!

Oh, and BTW, I'm INSANELY jealous. Been "waiting" on DH to install wood floors for six years now. Ugh!

Tami said...

How exciting! Can't wait to see it installed!

I got an email from a patient the other day thanking the entire staff for her great experience. We do what we do with everyone we meet but it's always nice to get a note of appreciation.

I think that there's a lot of resentment towards employers right now. The employees feel "put upon". They're expected to do more for less $$, less staff, longer hours with no acknowledgement. Yep, I've had those feelings of resentment myself. I think the difference is in the character of the person you're dealing with. Character shines through every time and while you might not feel "it's your problem" to assist in a situation, those people who were "raised right" will step forward to help.

Leigh said...

Stephanie, thanks!

Carolyn, that's a long wait, LOL. Sometimes I think we get "blind" to things that need to be done because we get used to seeing them the way they are.

Tami, excellent point, and very true. I ran across a quote the other day, wish I could remember who to credit, but it said,

"We pretend to work because they pretend to pay us."

You'd think companies could figure out that their employees are actually an investment in their success.

Amy Dingmann said...

So glad your flooring finally arrived...nothing like waiting to start a project you can't wait to get done!

You are right that one person can make all the difference. Thank goodness we still have people who are willing to take the five extra minutes to check on something or look past the easy answer. :) You could have been waiting forever for that flooring...you know, behind those mysterious five people ahead of you... :)

Dani said...

Reckon it's going to looking positively stunning, and can't wait to see photo's of the finished floor :)

Good luck with finding space for it to acclimatize :)

Clint Baker said...

Can't wait to see it all done!

Jocelyn said...

First, congrats on your floor!! That's going to be beautiful!

Second, I know what you mean by terrible work ethic. We've been needing wood for our stove and looked on Craigslist for providers. We'd contact people for the wood, set up the date for delivery, and they'd never show up--time and again. Folks, you're trying to sell wood here, you need to deliver it. But no. I don't get it, I really don't.

Woolly Bits said...

I love timber floors, though I have tiles in the kitchen myself. I am sure your floor will look great with the furniture and wall treatments you've chosen!
the work ethics of some people .... never cease to amaze me! DH says that it is down to being paid poorly, but I don't agree with that. some people get paid peanuts, but they still try to help customers. others - just seem to be paid to be there:(( and yes, it does say a lot about the shop/factory owners, but then sometimes I don't have the choice to go somewhere else....

Seeking Serenity said...

I call them "Lumbar" liquidators- due to the condition of your back after installing :D

Theresa said...

Oh Peaceful has it right, but can't wait to see it installed!

Nina said...

The floors will be gorgeous. I really like that you were able to find wide flooring. That should be right in keeping with the age of the house.

Leigh said...

MamaTea, we found that odd as well. If we'd been waiting 2 months for our order, how long had the others been waiting??? I just hope I can always be one of those make a difference persons.

Dani, well that's the trick of it. :) Actually I've gotten pretty good at living with piles of things all over the place. I may not know how to act once everything is finally in place!

Clint, me too!

Jocelyn, that's the frustrating thing about craigslist. Freecycle too, which is why I quite trying to give my stuff away on it and just donate it to a thrift store instead.

Bettina, I hope so! I agree about work ethics and attitude. We've known folks who wouldn't "roll out of bed for that." Yet now, we're just thankful Dan even has a job.

Peaceful, LOL Ain't that the truth.

Theresa, it's exciting to think of it!

Nina, that's one of the reasons we went with such a wide plank. Plus, the floor is so uneven, we're hoping this will help even it out!

Renee Nefe said...

I can't wait to see your floors installed. I'm so glad you finally got someone to help you.

I am constantly contacting customer service about situations like yours. In your case, make sure you send in praises for the person who did take the time to help you and then go after the ones who didn't bother.
And it's totally work ethic here. If you don't like the pay, you leave or negotiate a better pay...you don't take it out on the customers because in the end the customer is really who is paying you and if they don't like your attitude they won't come back.

Tom Stewart said...

I know that this has been at the forefront of the Kitchen projects! And when you get it installed, other projects will follow. And your kitchen will truly be yours!
I know that DAN can install it with his eye's closed and it will make such a differance!
This is one of the things that you will see every day and as it is a DIY, You and Dan can take oride that YOU DID IT!

Susan said...

That is going to be a righteous floor! I hope you cover the installation in your posts, because I am sure there will be "tweaks" due to old house, etc. You and your husband are my go-to team for all things DIY! I agree with you on the lack of work ethic. Everyone feels entitled to pay without working for it. Amazing.

Grace said...

I'm so excited about your floor! Wait. Is that weird?

(I really am excited for you, Leigh, and I know how great you will feel when all of your kitchen projects are behind you.)

By the way, that wood is gorgeous!

Mama Pea said...

Hooray for the arrival of the flooring and hooray for properly raised kids! Please do show us the full installation of the floor. I have a feeling the finished product is going to be loverly!

I don't know when or where parents lost it, but kids today are not being raised to be caring, responsible people. It is so sad. Having said that, there are still a lot of great people out there and it's a joy to encounter them!

The Stay @ Home-Gardener said...

I'm in the process of finishing a "Liquid Lumberdator" floor install as well. Quite understood on the store help. I think it isn't a stretch to add in other aspects on it such as the lack of work benefits and a non livable wage. You are correct however that regardless of all the other factors, one shouldn't feel that the world owes them something other than basic human rights. Hmm, wouldn't a livable wage be a basic right though??

Leigh said...

Renee, yes, definitely, about the praises to the one who finally helped us!

Tom, this is the foundation of it for sure! I have to say that Dan isn't always as confident of his abilities as I am, or you are. :) But we always manage, and I'm always pleased with the job he does.

Susan, yes, I'll report all the gory details, LOL. This will be a wonderful record of it all.

Grace, thanks!

Mama Pea, will do. I think it's going to take more mental work than physical. Regarding kids, I think in the end they make their own choices and even well raised kids can choose to not care. It is a joy to encounter folks who are willing to help others though.

Stay @ Home-Gardener, agreed, one would certainly think being able to make a decent living a basic right. But who's going to decide what a livable wage is? Does that mean being able to own a $650,000 house & a 3 Mercedes? Or an $80,000 home & used 1988 Chevy? Does it mean supporting 5 kids? 2 kids? No kids? Does it mean being able to support $22,000 in credit card debt? Those on top, who could actually do something about it, (corporate business and the government) seem to have different definitions than those of us on the bottom. We look to things like increases in minimum wage to help fix the problem, but then employers pass the cost on in the form of higher prices for goods & services, and the government passes it on as higher taxes. As I see it, the problems boil down to quirks in human nature that sadly, are not fixable at the human level.

Sam I Am...... said...

Will there be a tutorial to follow? I need to learn how to install a floor! DOn't worry if there won't be...I'm sure with the internet there's plenty of info out there. I have much to do first before I get to that. Thanks for the info on LL and the yellow pine though!

Leigh said...

Sam, I will definitely fill everyone in on all the details. Our kitchen floor has some unevenness problems, not just sloping, but dips. We'll be doing quite a bit of shimming to get it as even as possible. Taunton Press has an excellent DVD, Laying Hardwood Floors with Don Bollinger. We found it at our county library. There is a companion DVD, Sanding and Finishing Hardwood Floors with Don Bollinger. If you can find those, you'll do well. :)

www.FarmLifeLessons.blogspot.com said...

Excellent point. I've always told my kids that there are some people who waste incredible time while trying to "look" busy, simply living their life in pretend-mode, while other people use the same time to actually do the real thing and be busy. To me, both take some semblance of effort, so why not just go into "busy" mode and make a difference in this world? However, I still see people all the time who are pretenders and I wonder if they will ever figure it out.


Leigh said...

Lana, I hadn't thought of it that way but that's very true. Dan thinks it take more energy to try and get out of work than to just do it. :)