Personal Statement

Personal Statement

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Countdown to the New Old House: Almost Soup

I really hate to type this (for fear of jinxing things), but it would appear that we may receive our final inspection for our certificate of occupancy tomorrow.

This is obviously very exciting news.

What would be even more exciting: to be completely finished in ONE ROOM, just so I could take a picture. We are close on finish-out - so VERY close. The pot's boiling. But we haven't yet fully achieved soup. And we probably won't achieve soup until our stuff gets moved in, because, realistically, you don't want to tackle the punchlist until the movers are done bumping into things and creating more punchlist items.

So I'm trying to find joy in what I can - like these before and after photos of the boys' bathroom linen closet.  I don't actually have a true "before" photo, because the old cabinet was too ugly to merit a photo. You know those Fifties-styled bathroom cabinet drawers that have sort of a bullnose edge going all of the way around? Yeah, they were like that. With chipped paint and bad handles. And an awkward laundry chute-sorta-thing down below.

As such, this isn't a true "before" - it's an "after the contractors installed unfinished cabinet doors, damaging some beadboard trim in the process and revealing some unfortunate blue ceramic tile":

Aha.  THAT's why the prior owners put up the beadboard - the one feature of the room that I decided to keep.  Good decision, because eeeeeegaaaaaads.  Remember, if you will, that the entire room used to be Pepto-Bismol pink, except for the bathtub, which was the color of day-old salmon.

Except, apparently, the room didn't used to be entirely pink.  Once upon a time, it was pink AND blue.  It's like a baby shower threw up.  In a bathroom.

This is the "after" of the linen closet corner, with beadboard restored and handles installed:

Momma likes.  Momma also likes the pedestal sink, which Daddy doesn't like, because he claims that it's too low.  Low, Momma replies, is good, because it leaves room between medicine cabinet and sink for one of those nickel-and-glass shelves like they have in the Restoration Hardware catalog.  Oh, wait:  we have two boys.  And they are OUR boys.  Back-spacing . . . . .

because it leaves room between medicine cabinet and sink for one of those nickel-and-glass shelves like they have in the Restoration Hardware catalog a crown molding shelf painted to match the molding on top of the medicine cabinet.  On which shelf the boys can put useful stuff like their soap pump (which is bamboo, NOT glass) and their toothbrush holder (which is rubber, NOT glass - are you sensing a theme?).

Done, and done - except nooooooo, we're nowhere near done, because the plumber saw fit to cheat the pedestal sink to the left.  Good choice, to the extent that it creates a corner of sink decking that is protected on two sides by wall.  A toothbrush left in that corner has half of a chance of not falling on the floor.

NOT a good choice, to the extent that the sink is nowhere near centered under the medicine cabinet:

Um, yeah, that's a bit . . . wonky.  I have to take a moment here to marvel at the male repitilian brain:  some combination of men thought that, just maybe, this might pass muster with me.  Spouse at least took notice that something was amiss:  I believe that the exact quote was "the sink isn't EXACTLY centered under the cabinet, but it's okay."  REEEEEEEEEALLY?  Is it okay?  Is it in the neighborhood of okay?  After being out of my home for nine months, do you really think I'm going to live with THAT?

Told Spouse that sheetrock is the traditional thirteenth Mother's Day gift, so could he please have the cabinet, and the light fixture above, moved over to the left?  Spouse helpfully pointed out that the light fixture probably is too long to be centered fully over the sink if we leave the sink where it is.  So options are to:  (1) leave the sink where it is, center the medicine cabinet, and have the light fixture 96% centered (that's a rough approximation); (2) leave the sink, center the medicine cabinet, and buy a new light fixture to replace THE BRAND NEW ONE; (3) move the sink and leave everything else where it is, whereupon the sink will essentially be on top of a person sitting on the commode (NEXT!); or (4) have the electrician move the light fixture as far over to the left as it will go, have the main contractor center the cabinet under it, and have the plumber shift the sink ever so slightly to the right (that's what we call in the biz a "three-tradesman trifecta").

Option number 1, it is.

Question:  could just ONE THING proceed from start to finish without a glitch?  Don't answer; it was rhetorical.

In the meantime, I'm refraining from reattaching the molding to the top of the medicine cabinet (it came off in transit, so I painted it separately from the cabinet itself, and I just need to put it back in place with a little wood glue) and installing the mirrored door.  No point in doing all of that if the piece is going to get relocated.  And, also, I put the screws for the door hinges SOMEWHERE when I was painting the cabinet, and then the next day Frank the Hardwood Floor Guy showed up at oh-dark-thirty, and I moved things out of his way all fast-and-furious-like, and I have no idea where the screws ended up.

I will look for them tomorrow night and this weekend, when Project "Install All of the Light Switch and Outlet Covers, Toilet Roll Holders and Towel Bars, Line All of the Drawers and Start Moving Stuff Into the Kitchen Cabinets" commences.  Or hopefully commences.  We'll see what the inspector says before we start populating cabinets.  But hardware installation is a definite must.  Because Momma needs to see some non-wonky progress.

Oh, wait - Spouse, me and an electric drill? Yeah, some wonkiness is bound to be involved.

Side note:  SUPER happy about the extra foot-plus of depth that we reclaimed in the linen closet.  We purposefully didn't put shelves in the lower cabinet, because it would be difficult to reach down and access the back from a standing, or even slightly crouching, position - the thing is THAT deep.  (Easier to access the depths when you are reaching up, so we put in three shelves up top - plan is to store little-used items in Rubbermaid totes in the back, and towels, etc., in the front.)  Instead, we left the lower cabinet as one ridiculously deep cabinet, in which I can store ginormous bulk packages of toilet paper/paper towels/tissues from Sam's or Costco.  The kind that I never buy, because small, old Tudors don't afford that kind of storage space.  Well, I know ONE small, old Tudor that can accommodate bulk buying now!  Woot, woot, woot!  We had them tile the base of the lower cabinet, rather than put a wooden floor down there, to maximize storage space and also to address the inevitable flooding of the bathroom by one of the boys (or two boys working in tandem).  But there's a little lip there, which might keep water from coming in.  Also, benefiting from a happy accident in that, after we decided to tile the bottom of the linen closet, we learned that the guys were out of the floor tile, so they had to use the coordinating subway-style tile from the tub surround.  It's gorgeous and looks for all of the world like a decorative feature that was intentionally planned.  Wait, I'm not supposed to tell you that it wasn't intentional - that defeats the purpose.  Starting over:  WE HAD THE CONTRACTORS CREATE A DECORATIVE TILE PATTERN FOR THE BOTTOM OF THE LINEN CLOSET.  AND IT'S GORGEOUS.

It's the little things, you know?

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