Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Wrapping up the home repairs....but not without a hiccup or two

Hallelujah, we have ceased to leak. Six showers since the grout patching, no water. Today he came back and sealed the grout, and my handy go-to guy has patched the hole in the ceiling and repaired the wall. I'm living dangerously, I know, but I refuse to go through holiday entertaining with a hole in the ceiling, though I will admit that I honestly considered stuffing a large stuffed bear up into the hole and dressing his dangling legs in Santa pants and black boots if the hole wasn't repaired.

Lest I be lost in the reverie of the luxury of knowing that the leak has been fixed and we are on our way to normalcy, I was rudely awakened from this sense of wellbeing yesterday morning by a sound of what could only be a small plane that had miscalculated it's approach to the nearby airpark and slammed into the house.

I grabbed my jeans from the bedpost, my slippers from the top of my dresser (if I don't put them up there, Bailey will turn them into his own twisted version of flip flops) and tore down the stairs, through the breakfast room, and into the family room where the sliding door stood open. OMG, it's the hubs! As I'm halfway out the door, pantless and barefoot, he's on his way around the corner with Bailey and wants to know what that noise was, that clearly had come from inside the house.

I immediately look to the hole in the ceiling, thinking the bathroom floor has finally given way from the incessant leak and that the shower is now blocking my access to the dishwasher...no, okay there. Cabinets are still hanging on the walls. Hmmm...

As I walk back through the house I find my path blocked by one of the hulking 30 lb. 30x80" mdf bifold doors that hide the laundry facilities. How I didn't trip over it and land face-first in the family room on my adreneline-fueled sprint through the house 5 minutes earlier, is no small miracle. How it is that there is not a small squooshed chihuahua under it is proof that animals can have guardian angels just like people do. (Hey, wait a minute...where has mine been for the past month?) It could have splintered a kitchen chair and the table (guess I'd have to dis-invite one person from Thanksgiving), it could have taken the door off of my front load washer, it could have cracked 6 feet of ceramic floor tile, but it did none of those things. It just made the most excruciating noise possible as it committed hari kari by tearing out it's own heart (the heavy metal spring pin that holds it in place) and collapsed in a lifeless heap in the Entwistle breakfast room at 7:10 a.m. Monday morning. R.I.P.

Fortunately, while every standard item in this house (doors, cabinets, sliders, windows) is some custom size that the builder must have got some special closeout deal on when he built the house, this door was standard 60x80. And I could get a pretty 6-panel replacement (albeit I'd have to custom order something to match for the pantry door), and it was in stock at the Home Depot up the street.

Got my handy go-to guy out last night to check it out, remeasure, and made a plan that he'd come back today to fix the ceiling, hang the new doors, tackle a couple outside projects, and all is well. That is all was well until I walked into the kitchen to find him hanging the wrong size, wrong style doors. He's really good making things fit, so he's sort of added a little false wall to accommodate a shorter door....truly creative, nice looking, but NOT what I had in mind.

He's still at the Home Depot, which is where I sent him to attempt to return the wrong stuff (which he had to uninstall and which he might have shaved a little faux wood off of) and obtain the right set of doors. Leaving me to ask myself when is life going to return to normal here at Maison Entwistle. (and know that when I do ask this, it is in my best angst-ridden Charlton Heston at the end of Soylent Green voice)

(Hopefully by the end of the day, this photo can be captioned 'BEFORE'. Otherwise, some of our guests will enjoy this view Thursday during dinner.

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