Lawd, Wednesday, you rolled around again fast. It’s hard to believe we’ve made seven trips around the sun since last we met. It seems like a good time to tour the ugliest room in my new house, but first…
It’s about 4:00am and I decided to get a head start on today’s update, because Hubs has a serious snoring thing going on right now. He typically conks out within seconds of his head hitting the pillow and my desire to hit him with a pillow rears its head a few short minutes later.
This is my second night this week with about two hours of sleep, so you may want to avoid me, say, on Friday.
These things happened between 11:00pm last night and 3:30am today: 12 standard roll him over, he rolls right back scenarios; several deployments of the classic “elbow to the ribcage” move; one Instagram entry into a National Geographic photo contest; four to six Tourette-style “Stop it!” outbursts, followed by a rotating stream of expletives; and one delayed push of the eject button on my side of the bed, leading to 6-10 fingers now clacking on a keyboard.
I feel like the Goose to his Maverick, because one of us is gonna hit the canopy of this jet-speed life today and I think it’s going to be me.
In less than hour from this sentence, he will wake up fairly well rested and offer yet another apology for the size of the bags under my eyes. Seriously, they are so puffy right now, I could spend a month in Italy without luggage. In winter. With my own ski equipment and I don’t ski.
I blame his nighttime noises on the weight gain related to the stress eating I mentioned a couple of weeks ago. No, I don’t. That’s not true. I blame him. It’s just plain rude, especially when you include the sleep farts.
They are always pointed in my general direction.
Admittedly, he’s very handy around the new house on the weekends, helping to demo the interior walls and keep the job site clean while we await the asbestos abatement (Grr. Buh-bye, $5000), so the nocturnal inhumanities are forgiven, for now.
We are saving money by doing as much of the nontoxic demo as we can. Our son is helping us when he can and has been a Godsend since the day he was conceived. I swear I heard him nailing, framing and dry-walling a barrier between himself and his twin sister in-utero. I bet he put her in charge of finishes though, because she’s good with them.
She coulda been a designer.
Before listing the house, the realtor hung a couple of brand new, still in the wrapper fixtures in addition to the myriad of new Boob Lights in the house. The dining room drum above may be giveaway worthy, but, in my opinion, the big boobs are overrated.
We are about halfway through the rock-hard plaster on drywall removal on the first floor and received the all clear from our environmental safety team yesterday, so gutting the ceilings comes next. I know this may sound a little drastic for a house that looks pretty darn good on the surface…
But is described in the inspection report to have systemic electrical, health, life safety and welfare deficiencies (think asbestos flooring, siding and wiring with ceramic conductors; a seriously out of date electrical panel; crazy steep stairs; radon gas; and a tiny new water heater that’s hooked up to…nothing). It’s cheaper for us to tear out the old plaster, gypsum, and cellulose to allow for easy re-wiring and re-plumbing of the whole house, than to have trades work their magic and try to repair the holes afterwards.
Word to the wise: Electricians and plumbers charge less if they don’t have to cut holes in your walls and fish wires and pipes through them.
The original cast iron pipes are so corroded I can barely fit the tip of a pinkie finger into them. The buildup is so heavy I can’t imagine how the water manages to get through, much less appear clear. Unless you have low iron levels, I suggest you BYOW if you stop by for a visit.
It’s pretty gross and kinda cool at the same time. What can I say? I love patina.
Cold showers are on me, there may be a Boob Light giveaway here (no there won’t, unless you
guys beg), and we are trying to recycle, repurpose, or reuse what we love. We purchased it as is, so, you know, it has issues. Don’t we all?
As I type, the upstairs neighbors are taking their don’t-Google-it-just-hit-the-link Schnoodle out for a predawn walk right now. I have issues with what that dog does when its parents head off to work. It sounds like something akin to a herd of cattle, salsa dancing with joy, all day, every day, but I digress.
Ah. Apartment life.
I’m looking forward to moving again, believe it or not. This former bedroom will become part of the main living area. Imagine how much natural light it will be flooded with when it has no closets and four windows, instead of two.
And that front door…there will be a giveaway, to Habitat for Humanity. It’s fairly new, but I’ve got a custom-built option in my back pocket and found a receipt for some lighting parts in there too.
So, about the ugliest room in my new house:
I always say nature makes no mistakes when it comes to color, but sometimes people do.
I can and will design you a room round the fifty shades of white in one Calla Lily or deep dive into the luscious pinks of a pale peony. We can take the dying fall leaves of an oak tree and create a peaceful, nature inspired retreat. Whatever.
Whatever you want. It can be did.
As we headed down the driveway and into the cottage Sunday morning, to finish demolition of the second floor drywall in 90º plus degree heat with no air-conditioning, this magnificent Eastern Tiger Swallowtail butterfly flirted and flitted for my camera on a small Crepe Myrtle beside the house.
Totally keeping that tree.
He had a huge wingspan and was dying for attention. He was dying, after all–Swallowtails have a lifespan of approximately two weeks–so why not go all out?
But this guy may’ve gone too far, because he was Afflecking outside his gene pool, engaging in shenanigans with a bee…
So…back to color and nature and the most hideous room in my new house . Female swallowtails have beautiful blue spots on their hind-wings, perfect for an interior accent.
Maybe the previous homeowner should’ve looked up what colors in nature go with black and yellow, because Beige and WTF? aren’t it.
Please note the finger slicing fan, metal submariner shower, medical grade (also metal) storage cabinet, ceramic pull chain sconce, and the elevated commode, which just happens to fall under the lowest ceiling height in the house.
Age in place here, suckers. Turning radius, my arse.
Sad news: I really like the funky vintage yellow and black wall tiles. They scream Commodore Fan to me.
Something fun could happen here, but won’t. The tiles can’t be matched and the attic bathroom has no insulation. What. So. Ever. It’s super tiny and hotter than a German Shepherd locked in Jennifer Beals’ car wearing an off-the-shoulder sweatshirt…What? Too soon?…I don’t want to know what it feels like in winter.
Seriously, nothing in this bath(?) can, will, or should be saved, except for the industrial wall sink my youngest daughter already tattooed her name on. We are itching for a Cali-style outdoor shower, but this metal contraption isn’t, can’t be, won’t be, might be the one we end up using.
This mess of a space will soon be part of the upstairs lounge/bunk room. It’s a small house and we have three children, two SILs and four grandchildren. Peeps gonna need some private time when we are all together and by Peeps I mean me.
Peeps gonna need their own bathroom, too, but I can guarantee the colors will come from one thing in nature. The palette may start with a flower, some lichen, a tree, or a shell, time will tell, but I promise it will all come from one inspiration point and one color story, not three!
In the mean time, tell me about the ugliest room in your house. Could someone sweat to the oldies in it, freeze their tongue to the shower when it’s cold outside, or lose a finger to a fan in it? Better still, send a photo to kathy(at)livethefinelife(dot)com and, if you’re lucky, I’ll share your fugly photo and give you some gratis advice about how to achieve the best result within your space and budget constraints.
I’m on a budget too and I hate it for both of us, so until next week…
Toot a loo,