Monday, November 27, 2006

Weekend Recap

As previously reported, Steve installed the stairway railing this weekend. Nothing fancy, but we improved on what was there in that he made the railing in two pieces instead of four (what was there) and we used all oak rather than a mix of pine and oak. And we used better hardware.

Unfortunately the metal angles Steve was planning to also use to reinforce the connection on the angles did not want to cooperate. Suffice it to say, there was some cursing and crabbiness and ultimately the railing went up without them. At one point I said to Steve, "Can you lower your standards maybe a little?"

And here is Steve buffing out the grout haze. This buffing pad worked but it was still a tiring job.

While Steve was fighting with the railing on Friday, I was busy on my holiday decorations. It was about 60 degrees outside and I thought that was a good time to be outside stringing some lights. It's hard to get a good photo though.

I love the oversize more old fashioned bulbs. I used to be an all white light gal, but not anymore.

And what do dogs do on Thanksgiving? Why, they sit and wait for the turkey to be done of course.


Lin said...

You know, Jocelyn, I check in on your progress every so often and still find myself wistfully envious. Are you ready for one of those "in my day ..." tales?

Well, way back in 1977, I tackled my first old house. There were still far more old houses being demolished than cherished at that time but there was a small restoration movement just beginning. I was overjoyed when the Old House Journal started up and submitted several tips whenever I could. I had tackled a Second Empire in New England and then followed Bob Villa religiously as he tackled a near identical house. The demoralizing difference was his no-holds-barred budget compared to ours. Another impedant was the nearly complete lack of resources - few reproductions, no computers, no resource websites and no e-Bay to find originals. It was a very taxing process and it was soon acknowledged that old house restoration was becoming a substantial factor in divorce. It worked for me and one day I loaded up my motorcycle with tools and headed west for good. I hope those divorce stats have changed in the convening 30 years.

Ironically, I ended up in St. Louis where the old Victorian restoration craze had hit with a passion and I did what I was familiar with for a living. We even had big write-ups in the St. Louis paper, gallery opening style debuts and all. It was all pretty heady.

I had also heard that there is really only one old house restoration in everyone. Professionally and personally, I managed to exceed that expectation with at least nine old houses notched on my tool belt before recently heading to the boonies. So don't ever, ever get down and never ever give up - we are capable of so much more than you may suspect, especially when there is an aesthetic passion involved.

In my latter days, I have gone full circle and tackled the least likely of challenges - a 1970s vintage rat mobile home two hours into the middle of nowhere. It may be a defiant shunning of previous decorum and societal expectations but it is every bit as challenging and subsequently rewarding. Perhaps you will eventually go this full circle as well ... it has certainly been well worth the trip for me.

Lin (the old fart who fought with the 4 Square radiator last year)

merideth said...

i LOVE your old fashioned xmas lights...they look great!