Monday, June 4, 2012

Broom Fell, Company's Coming

**It's been a while since my last post. Late winter and early spring always seem to be ridiculously busy. This past season was no exception. But now I'm gearing back up for renovating this house.

Anyone who knows me also knows that my house is never visitor-friendly. It’s a construction zone with (mostly) nail-free sleeping areas, a (mostly) finished kitchen and a (mostly) finished downstairs bathroom. Everything else is a black hole of doom that’s riddled with stacks of plywood and lumber, power tools, hand tools, nails, screws, paint buckets and measuring tapes. After my morning staircase sweeping ritual today, the broom fell in the foyer. If you’re superstitious like me, a broom hitting the floor is never a good sign. It looks like company is coming, so I’d better get crack-a-lackin. 
After settling the broom back against the wall, I looked for my measuring tape. One of my measuring tapes. ANY of the scores of measuring tapes in this house would be fine, if I could just find one. But I found something better, which was a very special old notebook. Like any writer, I have notebooks upon notebooks, many of them so old I can’t even remember what’s inside. But this one is different. I recognized it immediately. This notebook contains every measurement of every wall, floor, doorway, window (even the crooked, round window), alcove and hallway in this house. Forget the measuring tape; I just struck gold. Let’s get this party started!

When I say we measured everything, I mean everything. Even the rafters in the attic!

Now, when planning for company, it’s best to begin with the things that absolutely must be finished by the time they arrive, which will probably be later in the summer by the way the broom bounced. Thank goodness it didn’t flip over. You don’t even wanna know. Mystical broom bouncing has a lot of subtle nuances to consider. With that in mind, I have two major project that I want to complete. Three, if the stars align just right. I need a functional laundry room, I want to finish the windowseat/bookcase combination in the living room and I’d love to have the upstairs bathroom beautified. 
Saying that I need a functional laundry room isn’t quite fair to the room. It functions just fine, but it’s a long way from convenient. When we moved here, Mr. Vagabond had the brilliant idea that we didn’t need any furniture for our bedroom besides a bed and nightstands. In his opinion, we should store all our clothes in the laundry room. I argued with him about that, but I eventually had to admit that he was right. We have never dressed in the bedroom, and we probably never will. We take clothes to the bathroom to dress, and the bathroom is just a few steps from the laundry room. I hate it when he’s right.  The problem with his brilliant idea is that all we have in the laundry room are a couple small cabinets and a bunch of shelves. I need cabinets in there, so that’s on the list. 

I refuse to post an image of the laundry room in its current state. You're welcome.
As for the windowseat/bookcase in the living room, that one shouldn’t be too difficult. I already have it framed out on the floor. I just need to finish building it, and then get it painted. 

The birth of a windowseat and book case. Salvaged lumber came in handy.
I'm thinking about something kind of like this:

This would be an easy build.

Or this:

Not so easy, but I love the idea of a table in front of the windowseat. 

The upstairs bathroom is a whole ‘nuther story. That room is beyond hope. No amount of paint or new flooring is going to cut it. That room has to be gutted and completely redone. 

First, it looked like this:


Then it looked like this:

Not much better, but at least it's not disgusting.

The shower stall is so tiny, I can barely shower in it without knocking down the curtain. There's a pile of Romex in the shower and a big weird curtain in this photo. Don't ask. I have no idea why.

As you can see, I have my work cut out for me. What else is new? 

Over the next few weeks, I’ll be posting photos of my progress. Stay tuned!  And for Pete’s sake, steady those brooms. 
P.S.  Did I mention that I also really, really need a deck out back?