Flooring and Bulldogging

I'm trying to figure out the best way to go through all of the changes I've made to the place.  I've done projects and projects galore.  It's been less than two months since settlement:  october 26th and today is december 21st, but it seems like it's been a year.

So I'm just going to start from the bottom.  The floors.

When looking at magazines, websites, and every single home i've been in since beginning my househunting.  Because yes, at my age (i'm under 25) people are reading In Style (which i still do) and looking to buy designer denim, high heels, perfume, cosmetics, etc (which i still do) but  I am spending my hours on marthastewart.com, going to PB, home depot, homegoods, the list is absolutely endless.   I watch HGTV.  I find every home, hotel, restaurant, and establishment I go into that I am looking at the decor, the lighting, the floors, and even more.  It's exhausting!

So onto the floors.

You saw the before pictures, something had to be done.   When we pulled up the carpet, there were paint stains on the old parkay floors, so the money it would cost to put into the old parkay and have it refinished plus ripping up the carpet  was similar, it was lower, but still significant to what it would cost to do laminate or hardwood.

I have always loved the look of dark wood.   I looked into pergot, laminate.  I visited home depot, spoke with two different contractors (one said he wouldn't even consider laminate) and googled googled googled. Hardwood costs anywhere from $6/sqft to upwards of $15/sqft if you get really fancy.  laminate is $1.50 to $5 or even 6$/sqft.   Hardwood was looking a little pricey.

I was out by our ikea in college park, and went into lumber liquidators.  They had a 4" and 5" wide dark chocolate oak.  wide is what i was looking for, dark is what i was looking for.  Because they only had 1000-3000sqft of each of them, they were on closeout sale.  The 5" is what I wanted, the 4" was cheaper, listed at $2.99 per sq/ft.  So I asked them about the four inch.  They said I could go pick it up in Frederick Maryland, but that they didn't have any at this location.  They had the 5" which they were selling for a dollar more per square foot.  The difference doesn't sound like a lot, but when you have to do 800 square feet, it adds up!  So I bulldogged them and bargained with them about letting me have the 5" for the price of the 4"    And they did!

Now before I show you pictures, let me tell you about bulldogging.   I'm a nurse, so i'm supposed to be caring and kind.  I take care of children, so patience is a virtue for sure.  I am an ICU nurse though, so I do have to stand up for myself and my children and be able to make quick decisions when the heat is on.   My boyfriend is in iBanking,  where it can get pretty cut throat.  So he has been trying to tell me that when it's my money, my life, and my choices that I should stand up for myself and be assertive.  We call it bulldogging. 

My five inch chocolate oak hardwood floors.  We placed them over the parkay, in every room except the bathroom.  My contractor did the work.  He had to put down plywood in the kitchen to make the rooms level, because there was laminate in the kitchen before

oh of course after he had already priced my floors with installation and everything my contractor tacked on a delivery fee and told me i would have to buy all new shoe molding.  which of course together ended up being between  close to $1,000.   the argument that ensued included him telling me:
 "you will go far in life"
"i feel bad for your husband"
"i will not miss you"
although to his credit,  i think i said "i work hard for this money, i need to know where every penny is going.  you know i take care of dying children"....maybe a little too much bulldogging.