I have, despite my base personality (which is sort of ironic) a very, very low threshold for chaos and a trashed house. I can stand untidy. (I’m actually really comfortable with untidy.) I excel at “pretty cluttered”, having figured out a long time ago that neglecting housework is an excellent way to maximize knitting time… but once we start talking about furniture in the wrong rooms and stuff from bookshelves piled up in other rooms, paint trays in the kitchen and lumber lying around the house I start thinking homicidal thoughts. I don’t know what the difference is for me, because I’m certainly not a great housekeeper or a neatnic. I can have laundry thrown all over the house and I’ll wish someone will clean it up, but it won’t bug me the way that a half laid floor makes me want to strip old paint off of metal railings with my teeth. It is for this reason (the homicidal thoughts) that renovation must occur around here at a breakneck pace if I’m going to be anything resembling sane. There is a limit to how many days I can put up with all of the furniture from Megs new room being crammed into Meg and Sam’s current room with a mattress in the downstairs hall and sawdust through the house, so after a wicked big push, the thing is done.
In a nutshell:
My brother Ian dismantled the loft bed (it was attached to the walls) took down shelves and an old ceiling fan that wobbled in an alarming manner and was therefore never, ever turned on, and he whacked a coat of primer over the whole thing, being sure to leave his mark.
Then the light got swapped out for something less likely to decapitate a member of the family, and Meg picked a colour of paint and helped Ian put it up. She wanted a colour just like chocolate milk. She chose wisely.
Walls done, Ian’s help was up and I was going to lay the new floor by myself. The old floor (a thousand curses on the people who lived here before us) was just plywood, and Joe showed me how to use the big saw…
and he left. Turns out that using a big saw is sort of easy, and that a healthy fear of loosing a knitting finger or three keeps you pretty alert. Also turns out that if you use the big saw inside, it fills the whole house with dust in an instant. so only three boards were cut inside. Then I moved it to the back garden, which worked much, much better except that I needed to run up and down the stairs with about 49873 boards.
New floor down, I installed trim, hung a curtain rod, hemmed curtains, put on a new duvet cover – and Meg moved all of her stuff in – including the furniture, which is now the only ratty thing in the room, but you can’t (as I told Meg) have it all.
Rachel H came over with some tools and Joe cut the bottom off of the old door so it would clear the new (higher) floor, and Rach and I (using my extremely good google skills) hung the door, which totally works just like a door, so we must have done it right. After all that, I give you Meg’s new room:
Which is so beautiful to me that I feel hugely guilty about Sam’s current room, so there will have to be a renovation there soon, since hers can’t be the only room in the house that’s a total trash scene.
Pretty, pretty… and Meg thinks it’s very grown up- despite the fact that she kept a couple of “stuffies” and dollies,
but I guess seventeen isn’t all the way grown up, for which I’m rather grateful. (Meg knit that blanket on the end of the bed herself.) As for me at the end of all that, I’m feeling supremely proud of myself. I learned how to lay a floor, I used big power tools, I cut trim and (with an awful lot of Rachel H’s tools and help) I hung a door. All things I didn’t know I could do, and I feel really empowered with all the new skills. Oddly, this frenzy of learning and exciting change has left me wanting to knit only one thing.
Yup. Two row scarves. I’m on number three – although did entertain ideas about a sock the other day, so maybe I’m almost over it.