Sunday, January 18, 2009

Porch Make Over

We have begun the reconstruction of the porches of our old house. We have been planning this for quite a while now, in fact, we officially started about a year ago with discussions with an architect. the plans were all drawn up, edited and finalized, permits obtained, bids requested from contractors, interviews done, contracts signed and finally the work begun. We have been talking about this project for years- in fact we rather started the conversation about 14 years ago. It was during my first year here that I saw the front WRAP AROUND PORCH- and fell in love. I would rapture on and on and on and on- about the incredible beauty- and warm invitation to sit for a while- of the wrap around porch. It was not received with enthusiasm- but I was not discouraged. The project involves replacing our front and back porches, replacing them with larger porches, and then replacing our large screen porch with an all year glassed in sun room. And we always get a bit discouraged about how little we can actually have dinner on our screened porch given the weather here in Cincy. There will also be some gutter and water damage repair, but the main project is new porches and a sun room. "Some damage" is a bit of an understatement- these 100 plus year old houses take constant vigilance against the assault of nature- and we just couldn't hold the elements off. The work began in early January and suddenly two of the porches were gone. First the screened porch was gone.

Next, the front porch was gone...


Now here I want you to imagine a wrap porch that will stretch around the right side of the house- rocking chairs- flower boxes- waiting for a summer evening to just sit- and sit- and sit some more. I close my eyes and can see it- almost...
And they took off some of the decorative pieces of the house and stored those off to the side. I understand that these will be saved so they can be reproduced made out of some type of polymer that won't rot, can be painted, and will last a long time, hopefully longer than these did - so far about 113 years.


The process started with the deposit of a very large dumpster in our driveway.


This dumpster really comes in handy as I begin the "cleaning" of the inside- the attic- the basement- the closets. I just take the "stuff" and toss them over the top- easy- no problem- oh my- I could get use to this "dumpster".

Yes, that means that we can no longer use our driveway to get to our garage and therefore, our cars are sitting out in the weather and our garage is empty. The poor Smart came here from temperature San Francisco where it never got cold, but now it is sitting in the street with snow on the windshield. I feel that this was a bit cruel for our fair weather baby- but she seems to be "weathering" the change without catastrophe.


But on the good side, we now have an extra half bath, kind of. It is a little farther away, and in view of our latest weather, it might be a bit uncomfortable, but it is an extra one holer. And it does have a nice view of our fish pond.


I know the kids remember my telling the story- over and over and over- about the trip I had to make to the outhouse at my Grandmother's- or use the pot behind the door- and the outhouse behind the chicken coop came complete with a "Sear's Catalogue" for tissue paper- and from time to time a snake. And all of this in Tennessee where it does get cold- and hot- just like Cincy. Well perhaps I'm waxing a bit nostalgic and we'll just keep the extra hole when the construction is done- but then maybe not...

4 comments:

Nurse Horrible said...

Ah Rumpke...

We have to keep our car out on the street as well, but our screened-in porch won't be finished for infinity.

When's it all to be done?

Max's Dream said...

Well, we think it will all be done on the outside by June or July, but we still have to paint the whole outside and inside of the house, replace the carpets on the stairs, hall and 3rd floor, refinish the wood floors in 3 rooms on the 2nd floor, so hopefully by next Thanksgiving.

Beyond The Strip said...

Wow! I can't wait to see the finished product. I love the outhouse! I could use a traveling outhouse with me at this stage.

Anonymous said...

wow... kind of sad to see it all torn up. I'd like to say we'll see it when it's done but I am not sure we can wait that long for a visit!
Can't wait to sit a while on the new one with you!
Love,
K