One funny moment after Jack proposed to Mac (and Mac dissolved, pretty much, into a melted snowman puddle (but recovered quickly enough for us not to call 911)) was when we all headed back to the house.
I had completely forgotten that no one in my family had laid eyes on the ‘el’ since it looked like this:
And it isn’t as if things looked ‘bad’, not at all. But we are about to move up to Maine full time. And we’d known we wanted to make some changes… add some storage and create a space for a bed on the first floor if we ever need one there.
We figured it would be better to do a renovation that completely takes over about a third of the ground floor when we all aren’t, you know, trying to live here.
Been there, done that (didn’t even want the t-shirt).
So when the proposal was successful, and Mac morphed from a liquid back into a solid, we headed toward the house. And I think it was JoHn who exclaimed, “Oh WOW! The renovation!”
And I was excited all over again, because I was so happy to show everyone what else I’d been up to!
So it was great to walk in and show them the… well, wait. I’ll show you!
This is the side door. Closest the barn, and pretty much the door everyone uses (except the fed-ex guy, visitors attempting to convert us to their religion, and also – I suspect – late night serial killers. All of those people will knock on the front door (the latter complaining of car trouble)).
A quick few steps to the right and you are looking at – wahoo – shiplap! And the window I’ve been fantasizing about for eleven years.
I say I’m patient.
JoHn says I’m stubbornly attached to my creative ideas and wrap myself around them like an environmentalist chains herself to a beloved tree.
One of the decisions I am sort of loving is the use of two doors that I’d gotten at a friend’s antiques store a long time ago, as ‘shutters’ beside the giant window. I had nowhere to put these doors, which are over 150 years old and were taken out of a building in Brazil. I just loved the patina on them…
And the old hardware…
I know, I know. I’ve said before that the places I live feel like canvases to me.
You know, the kind you use oil paints on so you can continually change them, over and over again and never be done? Ya, that.
So there are two doors at the end of the hall. The one to the right leads to the laundry room, which now has… yay!… some built-in storage :))
And I think I’ll get some cool wicker or canvas or wooden baskets for the spaces. The countertop is the perfect height for folding too.
Even bad folding.
Like fitted sheet folding.
Do not even tell me to go to YouTube because there are great instructions on folding fitted sheets there. They may be ‘great’, but I cannot follow them. Even when I go really slow and pause it and stuff. Seriously. Don’t should on me. I’m learning to live with my disability.
The other door off the hall leads to a storage room and I’m so excited because I finally have a downstairs closet (right) as well as a cabinet that – well, right now holds a bunch of odds and ends I didn’t want in this pic – but eventually it will hold everything from Granny’s sewing/knitting/quilting supplies to candles and table cloths and stuff.
And if you walk through the storage room and head left, you are in what we used to call ‘The Wayback Room’ or ‘The Dog Room’, but now Jack has dubbed it “The Chill Room” (works for me!) We totally chilled back here, many times, when the house was full.
This is the ‘bump in’ that now allows for a bed to fit into the room, if we ever need one downstairs…
I love the sign above the settee. And it has a story!
The first summer that we owned The Inn, the barn was – literally – listing and near falling down. We didn’t ever walk into the main part of it, but used a sort of lean-to area behind it for storing our trash.
The barrels were under a shelf that you could put the recyclables on. We had been advised to use bungee chords to secure the tops of the barrels because the barn had a family of raccoons in residence and they were crafty buggers.
Well, one night they figured out bungee chords and you should have heard JoHn yell when he brought the morning trash out to the garage because it was one big and gross mess I tell you.
And he bent down to put stuff back into the barrels and when he stood up, he looked above him so he didn’t hit the shelf with his head (lest he hurt the poor shelf) and, sure enough, he saw that it was painted underneath!
The sign – which turned out to be the original sign that hung on a tree at the end of our road in the early 1900s – was in the barn, upside down, holding trash!
Well, now I am happy to report it is clean, and not at all smelly, and hanging on our wall.
I just love it :))
Across from the sitting area is a little table and chair, next to the window and french doors that let in some pretty great north-western light, especially in the afternoons…
Leaving the Chill Room, you head back into the entry room (it’s like a big circle). We brought a fave drop-leaf table up from Dunstable, and an antique umbrella basket holds some honkin’ umbrellas (because honkin’ umbrellas are sometimes wicked necessary in Maine).
And across from the table is some new cabinetry. A small broom closet and … bah bah bah BAH….
A pantry! :))
Yes, go ahead and judge my Tostitos salsa and Old El Paso seasonings. I am strong, I can take it!
The last addition from the renovation is actually in the kitchen. A new cabinet with seedy glass on top, and room for wine or other storage on the bottom.
I made sure to have the cabinet makers leave me some holes in the back of each shelf (and in the bottom shelf of the window area) so that I could string twinkle lights inside. There is an outlet behind the doors in the bottom section (what?! You always need to be prepared for Christmas… and twinkle lights are appropriate for all seasons!))
The bottom of the cabinet. Cool because the shelves can be turned upside down if I want to store something other than wine :))
And that was it.
I know! How did I forget about a whole renovation? Well, there was a pretty good reason I suppose.
But I must say, since everyone has gone back to their respective homes, and the house here is quiet for a few days, I am loving getting used to living with the new storage and colors and uses for the rooms.
You know… until something stops me and I say, “You know what would be great, Hon?”
We’ll let him relax a bit before the next changes happen all around him.
Thanks for readin’.
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