Monday, August 19, 2013

Progress isn't always pretty

There is a paint post coming soon, but I took the weekend off painting, so there is one final coat to get on before I can do my big reveal of the stripe-less room. Even now with the splotchy first coat of color on it looks like a new space.

I'll also share my color choice for the bedroom that is almost done. I won't know what to do when I'm not sleeping in the living area. Maybe I'll just do it for nostalgia's sake.

Or not.

Aside from painting, we've had quite a few other projects going on here during our extended stay in construction-ville. Obviously, the guys are still working hard on the decks. They got up to the second floor, found extensive rot-- any one else unsurprised by that???-- and are currently reconstructing the entire second floor west wall. I had no idea it was even possible to replace entire walls until this "little" project. Here's what it looked like about 10 minutes ago.

OK, here's all I know about what is going on. You obviously can't just take out a wall and hope the house won't collapse on itself. To prevent that from happening, the builders had to build a temporary wall to support the weight of the house, tear out the rotten wall, and begin constructing the new, improved, un-rotten wall. In the photo the wall nearest us is the temporary and the outer wall being framed will be the permanent wall. Since I'm upstairs writing this and Little Man is (somehow) napping through all the noise, I'm grateful that the house won't collapse into a rotten heap. Since Beau is currently  under the house I'm sure he is grateful as well.

Here's where what that looked like this morning:

See how even the temporary walls look sturdier than what was there?

OK, so that's what's going on with the builders, but we're not just sitting around watching the fun happen. There's the prepping and painting, but that's just the tip of the iceberg.

And like that iceberg that sank an unsinkable ship, what looked at the start of the week to be a manageable to-do list turned into something surprisingly daunting.

Rather than devoting a post to each of the projects we have going on, I thought I'd do a little roundup to catch you up to speed.

1) Since the entire west wall on the second floor is going to be ripped out and reconstructed, we needed to fix the bathroom that wasn't associated with that wall. Here's the sad truth: Since closing on this place, oh, I don't know, seven months ago, we haven't had a fully functional full bathroom. We have had the equivalent of one, but not one one with all necessary functions in one place.

Most full bathrooms have the following: a flushing toilet, a working shower or bath, a running sink, lights, and a mirror. If they are fancy they might have towel bars. (We are decidedly un-fancy here. Nary a towel bar in sight.) The westernmost bathroom had the working shower, toilet and sink, but no mirror and no lights. That was the most functional room in which to bathe. Sad, right? Showering in the dark is an interesting event. I won't miss it.

The easternmost bathroom-- (which I will heretofore refer to as the purple bathroom because "easternmost and westernmost" make it sound like we live in some Downton Abbey-esque sprawling estate. We do not. We have two bathrooms on the second floor. Granted, two is a significantly larger number than the number we have in Virginia, so I'm not scoffing at it at all.)

I digress. 

The  purple bathroom has working lights, a nice sink, and a lovely reflective looking glass, but the toilet ran constantly (until we turned off the water supply and ignored it) and the shower leaked into the apartment downstairs. This week I put on my plumber pants (minus the requisite plumber's crack--I hope) which look much like my painting pants.

And I got in there and replaced the guts of the toilet. 

I did this almost all by myself. 

I know. I'm pretty amazing.

(Hint: It isn't hard at all.)

Then, in a crazy burst of industriousness because we could potentially have a bathroom with all of the basics, Beau sealed the leaking pipe under the shower with silicone and voila, everything was fixed! 

Or was it?

Today I showered in said non-leaking shower. It didn't leak into the apartment below, but the drain did leak into the crawl space where Beau was working on the forthcoming roundup item #2. (I know, I know. This is the wordiest roundup ever. Bear with me.)

OK, so Beau was in the bowels of the house and sewage was spewing out. Gross. But at least it was just my shower water. (This time...eeeeew.)

It turns out that a sewage pipe under the house had been torqued at a strange angle and broke. I ran to visit our new BFFs at the local-ish hardware store and got some rubber couplings so Beau could fix the problem.

Now we have one bathroom that has a flushing, non-leaking toilet; a non-leaking shower; a sink; a mirror and lights. Oh, and raw sewage doesn't empty out under the house. Bonus!

This is what progress looks like, people. And it happens to be just in time for the builders to rip out the wall of the other semi-functional bathroom. While that would have remedied the darkness problem, I don't think I'm ready to shower in a bathroom that is missing a wall... 

2) In addition to having moisture in the walls of the house, we also had a lot of moisture under the house. (Probably in part thanks to the showers emptying out under the house...) All of the insulation was moldy and sopping. Beau spent the better part of two days in the bowels of the house removing the old and securing itchy, awful insulation to the house.

This was his workspace.

Creepy, right?

You totally wouldn't catch me under there.

I bought him a work light on one of my trips to the hardware store. I think that qualifies me for the most thoughtful wife of the year award.

My husband is so brave.

And damn sexy when he's in his workin' clothes.

Sorry, ladies. He's all  mine.

3) In addition to the moisture under the house causing the insulation to become wet, moldy and generally nasty, there was also a nice puddle of water the accumulated against the west wall. I choose to think that the water is not shower water, but is ground water from the abnormally wet year we've had here. 

Just go with it.

Beau didn't want the water to remain there and compromise the foundation, so he donned his sexy work clothes and started digging a trench to encourage the water to flow away from the house.

It's ugly, but soon enough that rich soil will start filling in with grass and other assorted mountain growth and it won't look as much like a mud pile. 

I hope.

Because little boys are magnetically attracted to mud piles and I don't really want my kiddo playing there anytime soon...

So, there you have it. Those are the big non-painting projects we have had going on here. I know it seems suspiciously like Beau did all of the backbreaking/disgusting/creepy work, which might be true, but someone needs to watch the Little Man. And, in my defense, I did a lot of painting and running to the hardware store. That counts for something, right?

Which of these projects would you least like to do? Don't you think Beau deserves a prize of some sort for doing all of these gross tasks on his vacation? Maybe a new set of coveralls? You can never have too many, you know.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Comments make me happy! Thanks for stopping by and giving me your feedback!