Liposuction on a Pig — The Remodel begins

Posted on September 19th, 2008 in Remodeling by mynagirl
Our sweet little cottage

Our sweet little cottage

One of the funny things about buying a “starter” home or a “fixerupper” is that it’s hard to get started. 
 
I can go with the flow in a lot of areas and be perfectly happy with temporary fixes, but when it comes to things that are permanent I don’t like to just make a hasty decision.  Nor do I like to make a cheap one.  Permanent things are worth a little money to get the thing that makes one’s soul smile a little.  Especially when it’s something as integral to your everyday life as your home. 
 
But it leaves me a bit poleaxed.  I mean, if the wall is crappy thrice-painted paneling with plastic trim, do I really want to slap another coat of paint on it just for the sake of a little color?  There are no “little victories” in the aesthetic realm of a starter cottage like this.  The engineering side of the house gets to do little miracles constantly and can make things infinitely better with a magnetic door stop or a click-just-right-to-get-only-one-square paper towel holder.  But finishing touches on a house that needs to be gutted and redone?  Lipstick on a pig just won’t do it.  Liposuction is more likewhat the doctor ordered. 
 
So now compound that hesitation with the daunting logistics of doing reconstruction in a tiny house.  Because, well, if we knock out that wall, where do we put the stuff that’s there right now?  If I start this particular project, how long will I be taking my morning shower with the hose in the backyard?  How long can we live without a stove?
Here we go!!!

Here we go!!!

This line of thinking ended today. After endless hemming and hawing and two years of living with industrial-spray-gun-flat-white wall paint, a bathroom counter with (ugh) cigarette burns on it from the previous owners, and chipped linoleum (the list goes on), we decided to do the big before the little. And down came the wall with that unmistakably satisfying squeak of nails lifting from two-by-fours via crowbar leverage. Ahhhhh!

Scalpal, nurse! Or maybe just the sledgehammer

Engineerboy took prybar to dining room wall (my mom may disown me for this, but we don’t even own a sledgehammer) and proceeded to easily rip off the paneling with gloved hands. Next came down the cheap plywood on both sides. There was no drywall to speak of — that’s right, that wall in our kitchen is just painted plywood. Or it was!! Now the tiny assholes-and-elbows kitchen will get to expand lazily into the “dining room” which currently serves as a place for a toolchest, a sideboard full of computer hardware, and an overstuffed set of flimsy corner shelves from Wal-Mart that look like they’ll crater if they have to hold one more polical commentary tome or Unix Sys Admin manual. We envision a nice “open plan” with a breakfast nook-y type feel and space for one person to chit-chat while the other cooks.
Oh yeah.  Destruction.

Oh yeah. Destruction.

Next goes the why-build-a-free-standing-closet-in-the-middle-of-the-house.  Which might actually let us use the floor space currently wasted on the 1940’s-era “telephone nook”.   Stay tuned.

I would swear there was a wall here a minute ago.  Now where did I put it....

I would swear there was a wall here a minute ago. Now where did I put it....

One Response to 'Liposuction on a Pig — The Remodel begins'

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  1. on September 20th, 2008 at 9:28 am

    Methinks you put that wall where it belongs, in the dumpster! You go Engineer Boy and Myna Girl.

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