Friday, August 11, 2006

Wildlife, and Bathroom Dilemmas

Wow! I can't believe what I saw Wednesday morning. I was getting ready for work, standing at the sink in the bathroom, when I heard a noise in the backyard garden area. It was a large doe munching on some leaves off some vines! It's so weird seeing something like that; the brain cannot comprehend something so out-of-place. Plus, it's like looking at a statue when a deer gets scared and stands frozen in space. I can't figure out how she got there. The lots in this area are very small and hilly, with many stone walls terraced into the hills. I have a picket fence on one side and terraced steps on the other side, plus I believe my two neighbors to the north have fences around their backyards. The deer must have gone around the fences and up through the back of their yards. I have a 20-foot cliff in the back of my woods so it couldn't have come from the street in back, at least not up to my yard. I'm very close to the center of this village so it was totally cool to see that, and I keep looking to see if she's come back.

I've been waylaid in my efforts to finish painting due to a problem with my bathroom. My bathroom is miniscule and designed poorly, but I don't want to bother with it because eventually I'll have a bathroom built upstairs and use that for showering. Anyway, the soap dish that's built into this hideous vinyl shower enclosure cracked (it looked like it had previously been glued). Being a neophyte I'm not sure how big a problem this is. It seems like a bad idea to get the sheetrock, which looks like what is underneath, wet. I'm afraid this enclosure is glued on and will take the sheetrock with it if I pull it out. So my idea was to tile around the tub. I really don't want a new vinyl enclosure. Ideally I'd get a clawfoot tub, but that's certainly way down on the priority list. I guess the compromise would be that if, in the future, I get a new tub, I can tile down to the floor rather than to where my present tub is. I guess the excitement/frustration about homeownership is that anything can go wrong at any time, and constant adjustments and decisions need to be made.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006


I bought my house on June 7, 2005 and vowed not to make any changes until I'd been there a year so I could live in it and figure out what was needed to make it comfortable and workable. Unbelievably, a year has passed. I've started painting the interior. The house has 17 windows and gets a lot of light, so it has become apparent that I need to use stronger colors than the pastels I had initially chosen. Since my time is limited I've only gotten my bedroom, office and office closet finished. The parlor has been primed, but my attempt at wallpapering was stymied either by my limited experience or the walls being very out of plumb. The plaster walls are in pretty good shape (except for the closets) and just needed some sanding and spackling. Right now I'm working on removing very old wallpaper (the house was built around 1875) from a portion of the living room which was made into a closet. Then I'll have my first real attempt at a skim coat for the bumpy plaster.