We think it’s both, and we have been homeowners for a whopping 5 days. Tim and I went with that old saying about buying the worst house in the best neighborhood. This zip code (swanky, if you ask us) is privy to the best public schools and feels like the wilderness when, in fact, Kroger is a six minute jaunt. It is quiet and relaxing and beautiful (the 5 acres, not the house…yet) and we were admittedly fueled by optimism, moving into a completely paneled home built in 1981 as a handyman’s special.
With lots of Ballard family help coming from four hours away last weekend, we wanted to be organized and ready to go Friday night after working ’til 5. We bought paint, closed on the house, worked all day, and planned a jam packed 5-10PM window in which we would caulk and prime a large amount of the first floor space of our A frame house. Instead, we got to the house and our eyes instantly glazed over in a light-bulb-and-handmade-lattice-everywhere induced haze. We drank a bottle of champagne trying to revel in the inaction while it lasted and promptly ripped out every piece of lattice in reaching distance. We instantly felt better.
The next morning we tried to get our moving truck but were unavoidably detained (we have the truck but it’s missing a mirror, we might be able to get one from Indy, we can give you the truck without the mirror but WAIT we can’t find the keys, et cetera) and we ended up walking into a great deal through UHaul, so it all worked out. Long story short, everything got moved in two truck loads (we had to use a 16 foot truck since we have a surprisingly wiggly lane all the way back to the abode) and it was then that we realized we could take off the paneling because there was drywall underneath! Hallelujah! We were stoked. For about six minutes, at which point we realized the paneling had been Liquid Nails’d to the drywall, making it unfinishable since it ripped the drywall paper when we pulled it off. (Insert Debby Downer noise) We proceeded to rip out all the cabinets and tiled counters to create absolutely as much chaos as possible in a single week.
Bless Timmy’s heart, he has been working ALL WEEK to take off paneling and drywall which isn’t an easy task in an A frame when you’re taking the lone ranger approach. So far we have found a wasp nest, two mouse nests (Meg is horrified) and some old (thankfully) termite damage (“Oh we NEVER had any TERMITES out here…”) but that should be it for the nasty surprises since tomorrow we are ready to start hanging drywall again. I use the term “we” loosely since I mostly stand around with Grandma Susie face (read: completely overwhelmed to the point of profound commitment to one physical spot with huge eyes glancing slightly upward) while Tim likes the demolition of said paneling and drywall just a little too much, if you ask me. It’s actually a fantastic balance. Don’t feel too badly for Timmy. As soon as we get to the mudding/sanding/painting/finishing parts, it’s all me. Tim can go out for a beer and watch a sporting event and I’ll be in the zone with my classical music and creative mojo. Look out!
On the docket for next week: finishing drywall, painting walls (FINALLY), laying flooring, and installing cabinets. Too much to do in a week, you say? Pshaw. We’ll see about that.
*Forgive the wonky photos, but they were taken with my phone and the ceiling was too tall to capture sensibly. More/better photos to come.