Monday, August 27, 2012
This Old House
Today I was thinking of you as I watered my front step flowers to overflowing. I was thinking of this new-old house of ours and my affinity for imperfect older homes with "good bones" and how I mostly just love that you let us get it.
It hit me how much this house is a perfect house for us.
We've been in just 5 weeks and I love every square inch of this place already. But you knew I would. It's that way with us and old things - creaky, leaning, not quite right, quirky and jerry-rigged to serve a purpose - perfectly suited for the moment - brilliant, really. Pretty much you and me - minus the brilliant part, but everything else, spot on.
I stood in the kitchen, waxing philosophical over my house metaphor, trying to make the dishwasher run, which, incidentally, only runs if the toaster is in use. This took no small amount of time to discover the toast-to-functional-dishwasher correlation. I congratulated myself on my detective work and celebrated with toast and jam.
My brief celebratory snack was interrupted by a puddle of water on my bare feet. I quickly moved away from the toaster.
Remember how surprised we were when we learned that the previous owners left their refrigerator behind? How nice that was of them. Remember how we congratulated ourselves on our stroke of luck? Hmmm.... well, not quite.
I can no longer get the fridge out of the kitchen since installing a darling Ikea pot rack on the wall. The rack had to be drilled in.
It's not coming down.
The refrigerator can fall through the floor to the basement; I'm not moving that rack.
So I mop up my leaky fridge every day.
I momentarily consider the washing machine and dryer that the previous owners left for us, but decide to distract myself with more toast.
A week or so ago Brooke and I decided to change out the hiddeous knobs on the cabinets. Everyone told us this is an easy thing to do.
And we believed them.
After we changed the knobs from a gaudy gold to a sleek looking silver - which involved much more effort than anyone has ever extended for this type of home improvement - we realized that the hinges were gold. Yes, I know. We should have realized this earlier.
There was only one thing to do -off came the cabinet doors. Down we went to Lowe's. After returning home with our new hinges and watching me flail around with power tools, a pair of tweezers and the heel of a shoe, our youngest daughter took pity on me and also took possession of the drill and the hinges. We discovered we had the wrong hinges. Back to Lowe's we drove, with the old hinge in hand, so we would be certain to come home with the correct hardware. Home again, with Brooke attacking the cupboard door with renewed fervor that would have made you proud. After attaching the hinge to one cabinet we jumped for joy and tackled the next, high-fiving each other as though we were bringing home the gold, or in our case, silver. We were conquerors of our home improvement domain.
It was about that time, just following our Usain Bolt trash-talking-jubilation-moment, that we discovered different hinges had been used for the remaining cupboards.
We have inherited a house from Masochists.
If you walk into our kitchen you would see cabinet doors standing at attention on the floor against the wall. There they wait, faithful little kitchen sentinels, for you, who knows how to make all home improvement things glorious.
Me - I'm learning to be just fine with open shelving.