The remains of the fall

Well, it’s happening — at this very moment, in fact.  If I look at the radar for my neck of the woods, I see it: the blue churning mass of precipitation that means SNOW.  It’s always a peculiar feeling the first time that blue blob appears on the radar; I feel a strange compulsion to go out and load up on groceries and scented candles.  I suddently wonder if K Mart has a sale on fleece blankets.  I have to fight the urge to make a gigantic-sized batch of chili, which would come darn close to hitting the spot right now. Continue reading “The remains of the fall”


In for the long haul

Contractor update:  Still waiting.  Insert MP3 of crickets chirping here.

On the plus side, however, we have a new door to our garage.  Previously we had a plywood door that made a satisfying SLAM when it closed — satisfying, that is, if I was angry about something.  The sound was not so satisfying when the kids decided to play a game that involved Spider-Man (or whatever character) going in and out of the garage in quest of the latest Bad Guy.  Nothin’ like a Saturday afternoon of BAM … BAM … BAM! Continue reading “In for the long haul”


Did you hear something yesterday?

If you did, then it was the BIG sigh of relief that occurred after we had our umpteenth contractor out to take a look at our remodeling job.  If our original contractor wouldn’t have dumped us, this would have been done by now.  I kind of feel like a jilted bride who’s starting to date again.  Such strange men!  All these promises, but major commitment problems! Continue reading “Did you hear something yesterday?”


The Renovation Awards

Really, there should be a separate Hollywood-saturated night where the elite come to recognize the people who have sacrificed everything — time, money, sanity, etc. — in order to make their home more liveable. I’m not talking about myself, of course. At this point, I haven’t even gotten within 100 miles of the tip of the iceberg. But the internet has a special way of making people feel as if they KNOW stuff — myself included. I read other people’s renovation blogs, and I think, “Gee, that sounds really hard!” And then I start delving into the intricacies of renovation myself, and I feel as I belong to a special club. Continue reading “The Renovation Awards”


Calling all (normal) contractors …

Are there any?  At this point, I’m not sure, and I’m really not feeling very hopeful about it all.  Since our contractor jumped ship, we’ve been on the hunt for a replacement.  The loan money is now sitting in our bank account, interest is building, and I don’t mean the curiosity-related kind.  We’ve had two contractors over to date; one was quiet and informative, but wasn’t available for 2 more months.  The other … well, let’s just say that the guy exuded a weirdness that I hope to never experience in my home again.  His appearance was a big hint … there’s something not normal about having two collared shirts layered over one another, and there’s something even stranger about turning the inside shirt’s collar up.  Hellooooo, 1985. Continue reading “Calling all (normal) contractors …”


Burgundy plastic tile and …. ?

Although the majority of our renovations center around the kitchen/dining room area, we also plan on doing something (we don’t know what) to the bathroom. I’ve always hated this wallpaper — too cutesy country, with a bunny ‘n’ basket border.

A couple weeks ago my 4-year old found a small little loose bubble along the seam. Doing what most 4-year olds would tend to do, he pulled until he had loosened a great big flap of wallpaper. His brother, of course, noticed in good time and wasted no time hopping in the Tattlemobile. I thought about giving my youngest son permission to keep going until all the ugly stuff was stripped off. That wouldn’t be child labor, would it? I mean, he’s my own son, and he loves me, and I’d be giving him permission to do something that he thought was naughty.

Then I remembered that once the old stuff was off, I had to figure out what to replace it with (and scrape off the scrappies, etc.), so I told my son he did a very bad thing, and sent him off to play.

Underneath the wallpaper exists pink paint. When I saw that, my mind started thinking “Cool retro pink bathroom!” And that would be entirely possible, but the plastic tile isn’t pink. It’s burgundy with a black border. Although I’m aware that a 50s bathroom may very well mix burgundy, pink, and black, it doesn’t seem to fit here. Now the question remains: what’s underneath this floor?

White tile? Pink tile? No tile at all?

Later, because my husband expects me to be neurotic about what’s original in this house, I am going to find out. I’ve got a crowbar, and I know how to use it.

And if it turns out to be old tile with possible asbestos, then expect me to do exactly what a did about 7 years ago to an entryway: rip said tile out without a care. This is what you get from a new homeowner so focused on a task that the possibility of asbestos did not exist.

To this day, I’m not sure if that tile DID have asbestos in it. Let’s just say that if it was there, then this blog may run for a shorter time than originally planned.