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Category: Home improvement

Woman cave; or moving furniture as an antidote to grief

Sometimes, when there’s nothing you can do about the troubles of the world or the terrible sufferings of a friend, you just get busy. The sunroom has been an art room since last year. But I’ve been neglecting art (again) and I’ve missed being able to sit peacefully in the best corner of the house. Keeping grief at bay, I resorted to that time-honored female remedy of cleaning house and shoving furniture around. I recreated the sunroom as my woman cave, while at the same time stripping the kitchen down to clean minimalism. This is where I’ve been most of…

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Worked all day in the rain, but it was worth it.

Long day. Long, soggy day. The Wandering Monk and I worked outside in a steady rain for five hours, but it was so very worth it. I now have a back deck — hooray! First (yesterday), he removed the temp porch and steps that had served me very well, but served with extreme ugliness. That revealed even more ugliness, which didn’t bode well. For a change, we lucked out. Nearly all the rot and rubble was on the surface, not under the house. The Monk tore that stuff off, then managed to take just a hair over an hour to…

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Minioning today

The Wandering Monk returned yesterday. He (very little me this time, except for doing usual clienty things, both useful and annoying) made enormous progress. The progress was even more remarkable because it involved installing yet another new foundation beam. The monk was tearing off old skirting and general surface rot when I went off to run some errands and meet a friend. When I returned an hour or so later, he’d already jacked up the house, slipped a beam and supports in place, lowered the house again, and started plotting out a deck. Amazing. He happily learned a lot from…

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General ruminations

Well, this morning I’m off to the doctor, where we shall see what we shall see. I don’t expect to learn much today, but I’ll request that the clinic’s most discerning vampires taste my blood for anomalies. Then we shall see. The trouble will probably lie somewhere between, “It’s all in your head, dimwit” and worst-case. I’m not worried; just glad to be getting this done at last. Have I mentioned I hate doctors? (No offense, Dr. Jim. You’re different.) —– After the appointment, The Wandering Monk will wander by to work with me on a materials list for the…

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In my room

It’s been, I think, three weeks since I moved into the new bedroom. Going on a month, maybe. I love that room. I love it not only because it means the end to major structural work. Not only because the house is so much cozier now with all those airleaks filled (and there were many). I love it not only because it has that giant, accidental closet. Those are good, practical reasons. But there’s another dimension. I love it because it’s serene. It’s dark and quiet. I never hear my neighbor going to work at 3:45 in his big Dodge…

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A room with a view — of snow!

This is the view this morning from my bedroom door into the screen porch and beyond. It’s not unusual to get snow here. It’s also not unusual to get none. It’s been nearly two years since our last, so this was sweet. It’s supposed to snow all morning, then resume in the afternoon after an brief period of rain. (A snow day! The little boys next door are gonna have a blast.) I love this room. I love this spot on this planet. I love ferns bowed down with snow and snow clinging to screens and stone walls. I love…

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From preps to porch swings

It’s funny. You guys probably came here originally for lib-anarchism, Attitude, practical talk, and good rants. Maybe you stayed for Mad DIY construction projects. But this week I’m talking to you about stuffed sheepdogs and porch swings. Are you still here? Might as well get the porch swing out of the way, then go say something Meaningful afterward. I’ve been wanting a porch swing for years. Coveting a porch swing. But I thought I’d never get one. I couldn’t justify the cost of buying new. But I had very specific requirements — all having to do with the NorthWET climate.…

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Farewell faithful (stuffed) sheepdog, and other tales from the cleaning wars

It was one of my favorite things. This YUGE stuffed sheepdog. Beastie was about five feet long and so well made that it even had big button eyes and substantial, well-sewn eyelids despite the fact that, being a true sheepdog, nobody ever saw them. Every morning when I’d put it back on my bed, I’d make sure it was seated comfortably. It always seemed happy. But since finishing the bedroom a week ago, I’ve been on a crusade to bring order to the entire house after nine months of construction and chaos. I’ve already hauled off several Kia-loads of donations,…

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