Saturday, October 20, 2012

New Bedroom Windows, Now with More Panic

Do y'all remember how just over a month ago I told you our great house news? (The TL;DR version: We're getting new siding, a new kitchen window, and two side-by-side new windows to replace the one backyard-facing window in our bedroom. All seriously very awesome stuff.) Well, things finally started happening today!

Well, actually, they started a couple weeks ago, when my dad and my husband did some pretty nifty electrical work on the front of our house. They converted the two light fixtures that were on either side of our front door to one fixture hanging above the door, then used one of the old fixture spots to FINALLY give us an outdoor electrical socket. However, you won't be seeing those amazing repairs on the internet since the pictures give a straight-on view of the front of our home. I'm so sorry; I'd love for you to see it, but The Professor rules with an iron fist when it comes to our privacy.

I can't really get mad at him for this. Just use your vivid imaginations, squint real hard, and get excited for us because it looks so great.

(Funny thing to note: Old houses are weird, and they sometimes bite you in the bottom in weird ways. While Dad was here he got to working on the double switch in our living room that controls both the porch light and the light just inside our front door. He only exchanged the old, faulty switch for an identical new one, but then, suddenly and inexplicably, nothing worked correctly. They would only work together at once. One switch didn't do anything. He left after a long, frustrating while, only to get a call from us an hour later: We found out that the switch that controls the sunroom is actually connected to one of the front switches. Meaning that after Dad's electrical hoodoo voodoo, we had to have the front light on to see around in the sunroom. Which is obviously insane, as the sunroom is, you know, inside and also quite a ways from the front of the house. All we can figure is that, because the sunroom is a late add-on, the sunroom switch must have originally been a side door exterior light switch that was connected to the front porch light. Which is still insane. Dad was able to fix it because he's a genius.)

(I'm sorry if that story was boring, but I'm leaving it in for posterity so I can always remember it. I'll never forget how frustrated he was when we called him with that news. It was hilarious.)

Besides the electrical work, we were still waiting for things to get rolling. Windows need to happen first, obviously, as we don't want to put up new siding and then promptly tear into it again. (Thus the electrical work two weeks ago.) Rain has delayed the installation of the windows by a week already, but finally we caught a break in our damp autumn and the contractors were able to do the major work of the bedroom windows.

Perhaps you remember our bedroom from my entry in that contest. Or perhaps you used brain bleach in an effort to forget it for all time. I can respect that. I use a small dosage of brain bleach myself every time I leave the bedroom. If you wisely used brain bleach, then please brace yourself and take a big swig of hot, strong coffee and then very slowly open one of your eyes to focus on the view that is the west wall of my bedroom.



Here, let's back up FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY and get a better idea of what in the heck is going on here.

Oh, HELLO adorable ginger Christmas elf baby. You take away all the sadness.


Guys, it actually is as bad as I'm making it out to be (mostly) and I have some details about it that I will superimpose on that same picture. See if you can spot the sneaky addition I haven't blogged about.





I'll get around to making my bed and showing y'all what it's supposed to look like at some point in time, but please know that it was worth the expense (held back tax return, hey-o!) and that I would like to thank the many waterfowl who contributed their down for our comfort.

The window! So remember how I said that it's sad and wee all on its own, lonesomely off-center on a large wall, unable to let in much light and unable to even open? Well, the solution to all its problems was to replace it with a new window AND put in another one right next to it.

This was my genius idea, by the way. Again: posterity.

So the window guys showed up today and were banging around for a little while, and I thought, hey, they've probably got some siding off by now, let's wander out back and get a picture.

And oh geez they were peeling away my house's face, layer by layer, oh geez we can't go back.


Not that I really wanted to go back. Not really. But up until this point this construction (which is, by the way, not a minor thing) had been an in-the-future thing, and I hadn't done any freaking out about it.

I'm not a freak out sort of person. Like, at all. I hate drama. I can't stand people who thrive on drama. I can't stand people who cannot make decisions. If you are a dramatic person who vascillates between options for days on end, you might just be dead to me. I cannot handle that crap. But today, suddenly, watching the contractors starting to whack a huge hole in our house, I started panicking and questioning our decision.

Who just puts in a new window? That's crazy. Obviously the builders would have done this had it made sense! Let's call them up and see why they didn't. They might have good points. Oh, wait, they're all dead by now? Never mind.

I don't know these guys ripping into my home! We just hired them on, like, good faith! I mean, they seem nice and competent and skilled, and one of them even drank my coffee, but what if they're crazy and we end up in the Chicago Tribune trying to get an arbiter to settle with them on thousands of dollars worth of...holes they leave in our walls.

Wait, when did I get old enough to remodel my house? And hire contractors? I am not this old; I demand a recount.

Before I could have a full-on panic attack (my stomach was seriously in knots), I made the aforementioned coffee and then all was okay. Seriously, I'm very easy to please and coffee will do it.


So they banged and drilled and sawed around, both inside and out, for a long time. Our niece and nephew were staying with us, so they banging was interrupting six kids' normal naptimes, but I was ready to forgive because banging around = windows. I was peeking outside every so often, but stopped after awhile because I didn't want to give them the willies. So imagine my surprise when The Professor stepped out of the bedroom and said, "Go look in there. They're cutting the new window out."

Oh hello, saw. In the side of my house.


(I wonder if this is a nerve-wracking moment for them? Like, when I cut into a $20 bolt of fabric after measuring and re-measuring thirteen times, fully aware that this could be one of the times I didn't carry the one and cut into a $20 bolt of fabric JUST FOR THE HECK OF IT.)

(I bet it's at least thirty times scarier for them. At least.)

Hello large hole in the side of my house.


Except it looks like you guys are professionals who did actually carry your ones, because that framing looks beautiful and okay, I'm ready to let go and let God let you finish my dang window.


The actual popping in of the windows and final framework must have been pretty simple (ha!), because in no time the main contractor wandered through the house with some putty in his hands and said, "Hey, they're in!"

Hey! They're in!


How about that.


How about that.

So that's the (short on professional detail, since I'm in awe of their skillz) story of our bedroom window expansion, which has already altered our lives for the better. After cleaning up the supremely dusty bedroom, I commented that the fumes from the putty were going to kill us, and The Professor said, "Guess what you can do now?"


"Open the windows."

And so I did. And it was glorious.

ps: We immediately put up a curtain rod and wonderful, wonderful curtains, but I still had six kids running around like crazy loons (One of the contractors came through at one point and said, " many kids do you guys have?") and didn't get a shot of them. Suffice to say, they are way dark and thick and privacy-affording. And they will be open all day, every day, to better showcase the wonderful view into our backyard.

pps: I seriously feel like I just won the lottery. Imagine how ridiculous I would be if I actually won the lottery.

ppps: Mom, I'm so sorry I used the b-word, but it was necessary from a dramatic standpoint. I'll give you a footrub if you'll forgive me.


Mindy Kimmel said...

I am so excited for you!!!! I can't wait for you to post more updates. What is next on the list?

Anonymous said...

Christine, you should post the front of your house. Blur out the number. Why post pics of the kids but not the house? Don't leave us wondering about this reno.

Christine said...

Anonymous (if that is your real name...): I appreciate your suggestion and your excitement! Sadly, it's just not happening. Maybe I can have my four-year-old draw her interpretation of what it looks like when it's finished. Which will mean unicorns and rainbows shooting over our roof. (I'm not making fun of you, I swear. I really wish I could show everyone, but Mr. Case has his limits. I'm heaping all the blame on him.)

Aileen said...

love your new comforter! where is it from? also I am loving all the new updates. the windows make a huge difference.