Yep, that’s how long it took from our first meeting in early March with the remodeling company planner guy to the last day in late August with the finisher guys making it all look perfect.
Kind of makes you think that HGTV shows might not be telling you the truth about how remodeling projects in the real world get done, doesn’t it?
But I digress…
Here are some photos* of how everything [finally] looks now that we have a new master bathroom, laundry room, and updated TV room fireplace. We love the results, and couldn’t be happier that we took this wild ride– despite all the difficulties and absurdities along the way.
EARLY THE OTHER MORNING about 6:00 a.m. the clouds floating over our house were so pretty that I decided to sit on the deck, drink my mug of black coffee, and photograph the clouds as they drifted overhead.
AS I WATCHED CLOUDS morph into one shape after another, I remembered a recent interview I’d heard with Carly Simon. She was on Here’s The Thing podcast with Alec Baldwin. [Interview here.]
WHENEVER I THINK OF Carly Simon I think of the lyrics to You’re So Vain, specifically: “I had some dreams, they were clouds in my coffee, Clouds in my coffee.” It seemed like the perfect thought for where I was sitting, what I was drinking while musing on clouds.
I HAD ENJOYED LISTENINGto the podcast as Carly explained her life, her music, her memoir. Her conclusions. My impression was that she sees her past clearly, with a wit and wisdom that made me appreciate her struggles. And her triumphs.
AS I WATCHED THE CLOUDS, reflecting on what Carly Simon had said, I began to wonder about my own abilities to understand and describe myself to others. Would I ever be able to explain my past, either in verbal or written form, as eloquently and truthfully as she had explained hers?
NOT THAT I HAVE an overwhelming desire to tell all to everyone, but should I feel the need to do so for some reason, would I be able to do it? Would you?
AS FRIENDS AND FAMILY already know, Zen-Den and I have been dithering around for years about:
What to do about our master bathroom?
It’s never been a good use of space, and I’ve never felt safe in it because the builder grade floor tiles get slippery when the room is humid, which is often because the builder grade exhaust system is pathetic.
Considering we like where we live in this large subdivision, one that caters to people of all ages– some neighbors retiring here to build their dream houses, other neighbors buying their starter house here, and everyone else in-between.
And considering we like living in this small town that’s known for outdoor activities and casual dining, we’ve decided to stay where we are, remodeling what displeases us about this house, making it retirement-ready.
So, we talked with three remodeling companies about doing work around here, and decided to go with the company that remodeled our kitchen years ago. Their workmanship and our style seem to be in sync.
• + • + •
Thus here’s what’s going on around Chez Bean this summer:
we’re having our master bathroom partially gutted, reconfigured, and modernized so that it’s safe [& pretty] for us as we age; and
we’re having our laundry room reconfigured so that we’ll have a newer-style [larger] washer and dryer + usable storage space; and
we’re redoing our family room fireplace tile and mantel + having the walls painted a neutral, timeless color; plus while they’re here
we’re having our kitchen tweaked just a little bit to tidy up a few things.
When it’s a glorious day outside and it comes to finding something to photograph, I’m nothing if not persistent.
• PLAN A: HORSES I drove to the horse vet wanting to photograph the horses that are usually standing around in his fields. However, when I got there not one horse was anywhere to be seen, so I kept driving.
• PLAN B: HISTORY I drove to a tiny 200-year-old village that, when photographed while standing on its bridge over the river, would make for an interesting photo. However, when I got there the river was high, the sidewalks were muddy, and the wind was gusting. Standing on the bridge didn’t seem safe to me, so I decided to go someplace else.
• PLAN C: HAPPINESS Dreamed up on the fly, I decided to drive to the canoe rental place and walk the bike path that runs by the canoe rental place, using the opportunity to photograph the blue sky above and whatever might be underneath it. As the following four photos show, this plan worked.