August 12, 2010

Closing in and pursed lips

Yesterday, Wednesday August 11, 2010, goes down in the history of 227 North Street as the day of close-in. Scott Ward, our city building inspector, gave us the official sign off on Water, Sewer, Gas, and Electric. Close-in means we can literally start closing in walls. "Wall" strange word, 227 North Street does not recognize it as it has not seen walls for almost a year. Currently we have that very contemporary design feel called open floor plan, by which you can stand in the living room and see straight through the house to the Kitchen. Walls... wow! actual walls, it is a miracle we had begun to think would never happen. We begin with the Kitchen this weekend. Blocking to support the new cabinets, followed by insulation, and then installation of a form of drywall meant to be plastered on top of called "Blue Board".

As we move forward toward closed in spaces, I thought it appropriate to visit the past for some "Then and Now". As I looked through some of the "then" photos of the old girl, I realized we have forgotten how far we really have come, granted we have eons to go, but we certainly have dismissed the memory of the former wreckage. I will on occasion post a "then" picture and a "now" picture taken within a day of the posting.

Then and Now
Looking from the "then" kitchen toward the living room, and yes the door is hung upside down.

 The same shot now... looking from the new Kitchen, 
down the gallery (Dining room on the right) to the Living room.
 The old Yeller room. Shot taken standing in what is now the Library 
(or perhaps the Drawing room) looking into the Study.
 Pocket doors divide the Library/Drawing room from the Study, otherwise known as our office.

Sometimes you have to take  break from the dirty work and do something pretty. Now that we have power in the house we can have lights. We installed some of the electrified gas lights on the back of the house so that we can light the darkness of the deck, but also to have a sense of something that is decorative around us. 

Four fixtures across the North side of the house, four more to go on the West side. They still need glass and pretty light bulbs,
but they will
do for now.

It helps to be able to see as the days are getting shorter and I have moved my 
window workshop out of the Kitchen and onto the new deck space.


 Interesting Tid Bits from around the house
Meet Nancy. She came with the house. Nancy is a wild cat that belonged to one of the former, "squatters" shall we say, that lived briefly in the house as "caretakers". When the lady left the house, she left Nancy behind with Martha next door in charge of her feeding and care. Nancy is only really friendly at feeding time when Phillip dutifully cleans out her dish and fills it with moist kitty food.

From the ruins a simple flower blooms. Pink ladies, a form of amaryllis. There hundreds of these bulbs scattered around the property.


Humor for the day

 A couple of weekends ago, Phillip and I were outside the front of the house doing some clean up work and one of "those" women came strolling down the side walk. You know the type... fresh beauty shop wash and set, sensible low heeled pumps, pant suit appropriate for her status and age, face tastefully troweled on, and bright red pursed lips. She stopped to have a look, shifting her perfect purse from one arm to the other and pointing delicately at house. "absolutely wonderful job you are doing on this 'old' house". Of course we thanked her and had small chit chat about the work. She then inquired about "the guys", puzzled we just looked at her. "The guys, the guys that own the house, where do they live while the renovations are going on?"...

The two filthy workers in the yard slowly raised our hands and told her we were the guilty party, "the guys" as you say. Well, you could see a look of disgust rise up behind her eyes as she smiled through bright red pursed lips, and said how lovely it was to meet us and hurried off down North Street. I was soooo reminded of the "Little Britain" character, Maggie, that I had to post it here for your enjoyment.

An update to this post... I received an email from a friend who had read this post telling me that she thought it was very very funny, and that the woman in question was... Her MOTHER! Suffice it to say that Mummy wasn't as amused as daughter regarding my portrayal of herself! LOL!


  1. I needed that today. Made me laugh out loud!!!

  2. LOL - I also had to take down walls to get rid of hideous wallpaper. ;-)
    The "guys" have made amazing progress!

  3. Hey Mark, glad to hear that, by the way, the videos are soooooo funny.

  4. Go construction boys go!

  5. My dad used to go to his,in progress,upper middle class home in snotty Princeton, NJ, in his work clothes. He owned his own production company and wore the same work clothes as the workers. People used to stop by and think he was one of the construction workers. He loved it! he played right along and showed people the work they were doing for the "owner".

  6. Hee Hee
    I hate to admit it, but sometimes we do the same thing. If its been a really long weekend, we are beat to death and someone walking by asks one of the questions we hear all the time... "are they going to live in the house when its done or is this a flip?" or "all those brick in the back yard, are they going to get rid of them?" I will say that the owners are definitely going to live here, or the owners have plans for the bricks, sometimes I even switch it up...!

  7. Finally got to the library and on fast internet so that I could view your progress. It is amazing and wonderful and, of course, two such talented "guys" can do it all!!!

    Proud of you. Which is our room.
    Luv Mom and Dad.


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