Monday, January 11, 2010


I wanted so badly to get a first coat of tung oil on the dining room woodwork last weekend. So badly. It didn't happen. But after two more days of solid sanding, we're at least close. 95% of the room has been aquainted with fine grit sandpaper, there are just a few stubborn spots on one door left to keep working on. At about 6pm on Sunday I gave up the final vestige of hope that the first gallon of oil could still be opened that night, and once again I contented myself by putting mineral spirits on a rag and rubbing it into the smooth, raw walnut in various places. And I told myself to just be patient.

(Patience: A minor form of despair disguised as a virtue. ~Ambrose Bierce)

The picture above was taken in the dining room. That's the bathroom door dominating the picture. There are four doors that we have sanded down, but the bathroom is the only one we took off of its hinges. That is because the bathroom door was the only one that no longer closed. Our contractors have been correcting some settlement issues in the basement, and as a result the wall the bathroom door was in has moved quite a bit the past couple of months. The picture below was taken Sunday when I placed a level on top of the bathroom door frame.

This door frame was level when we bought the house. After taking that picture I carefully dismantled the entire frame. We'll let our general contractor handle straightening the door jamb, and then we'll carefully put the frame (and door) back up.

But, to show that the havoc to the bathroom wall is worthwhile I also have the following series of pictures from the bedroom directly above the bathroom:

At left is a stud from this knee wall in its condition when we bought the house. In the center is the same stud after about a month of slowing correcting the sagging beam in the basement. And at right is a current picture from the same knee wall. (The stud from the first two pictures is now behind insulation, but these double studs are only a few feet left of the one in the original pictures.) The contractors tell us that they are not planning to raise this wall any more. Although there is about another inch the studs could be raised, doing so would result in a very crooked bathroom floor downstairs. The bathroom floor is already a little bit wavy, but I'm not too concerned. After all, it's an old house, a few crooked floors seem appropriate. As long as the contractors are not concerned that anyone will fall through the floor, I'm content.

To close today I have a couple more pictures pictures featuring Mother Nature. Here's a view of the stone bridge over the creek, taken from Charles and I's future bedroom:

And finally, a view from the kitchen. This is looking across the field to the cemetery where John & Elizabeth Einsel are buried.

The winter weather may complicate getting work done at the house, but it sure is providing some beautiful scenery.


  1. I's - no such word. My.

  2. Actually, Charles' and my

  3. Correction noted - thank you, Madam Deputy. ; )

    I presume you're familiar with The Oatmeal: