Done, and Yet. . .

We’re on a short hiatus this week, down in the mountains of western NC, picking Owen up from his freshman year in college. It’s so incredibly beautiful and peaceful here, so far from the dust and decisions of working on the house. I’ve been looking forward to this trip, along with some Blue Ridge hiking for months (I’m typing this on the back porch of the house we’re renting, listening to a symphony of birdsong, led most vocally by 2 male cardinals who are clearly drawing the battle lines around their spring conquest). Thankfully the weather is cooperating, though truthfully, I brought my rain gear because I wasn’t going to let the opportunity to hike these mountains pass if Mother Nature decided on 4 more days of precipitation. I’m hoping for everyone back home that the sunny weather we had here yesterday and, so far, this morning, is gracing them as well, because it has been so incredibly rainy for the past several weeks at home that people are starting to lose their shit.

But, since this is a page dedicated to what’s going on with the renovation, an update: aside from a GFI outlet (and switchplate cover), one or two last pesky plumbing joints to tighten up, and, oh yeah, the door (which means the hallway also has to be finished – a small task I’d all but forgotten needed doing) the bathroom is DONE!! I’ll share the photos in a minute, after I explain how I could have forgotten about the hallway, or why *that* has to be done before we can call the bathroom done.

So first, what does the hallway have to do with the bathroom? Since you asked (ha 😉), I’ll tell you. When we changed the bathroom doorway and made it wider, we had to remove the entire frame (and trim, inside and out) of the previous doorway (recall the
Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde intro from several weeks back). I’d like to say that was the only factor that began the cascade of re-doing the hallway, but in reality, that began at least a year ago – maybe more, but neither of us can remember the point at which the hallway went from finished to unfinished. All I know is that the doorway from the dining room into the hallway was similarly taken apart and, looking at it, it appears that we added some structural 2 x 4’s around the door frame. However, they’ve been flanking the hall-side of that opening, exposed like the cutaway view of bones in an anatomical model, for so long that they’ve become invisible to us, and clearly those 2 x 4’s are too new to have been there since the original house was built.

I think there must be a condition – I’ll call it “Renovator’s Amnesia,” which kicks in as a form of emotional self-preservation when a renovation project hits flood stage, flows over its banks, and messes up parts of your house you never really anticipated it would; and the project, which you thought would take “x” amount of time, grows and morphs into something with a life and a personality all its own as it approaches “x-squared.” You no longer remember all the details, or when you did what, or even why. You’re just happy when you can call something – anything – “done.” Thus it is with that hallway: I’m so used to it in its partially-torn-apart state that when Tim asked me last week what color I wanted to paint it, I was taken entirely by surprise.

Back to the bathroom door: the hallway side of it needs new trim (which also needs to be painted) before we can hang the hardware for the barn-style sliding door (and the actual door itself, which cannot be hung until it’s ordered. I will now go inside and remind Tim that we need to do this, though it probably won’t happen now because for some reason he’s vacillating on the style of the door, meaning that it could actually be weeks longer before this project is finally, fully complete. Sigh). Further, because that doorway needs new trim, the trim in the entire hallway needs to be torn out and replaced. That’s because the style of the old trim is so completely different than the style of the trim in the rest of the house (see what I mean by “cascade?”). To be fair, he actually did put up the new trim around both the bathroom doorway and the doorway into my office, plus the baseboard on 2 of the hallway walls, Saturday afternoon. He even humored me and put up samples of the 3 possible paint colors I picked up late last week.

Meanwhile, though, I’m thrilled with how this bathroom turned out, even if no one will use it until it has a door.


2 thoughts on “Done, and Yet. . .

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