Thursday, August 26, 2010

Remodeling

I was nearing my seventeenth birthday and the time was getting closer for LV and me to have our first date. Our house had never been a nice one but it had never bothered me up to this point. But knowing that LV would soon be coming to call on me all the obvious flaws of the house were glaringly magnified.

The drop ceiling tiles in the living room were stained and ugly,the windows were so old that looking through the glass made everything appear wavy. The trim and windowsills had paint worn off. 

The little room at the top of the basement stairs between the living room and kitchen was horrible. The floor consisted of unfinished plywood with gaps between the sheets. Three of the walls were ancient gray two by fours and the fourth wall had lattice that was trying to hold in crumbling plaster that kept releasing little bits onto the floor. There was a a sizable hole in the floor along the edge that used to serve as my dustpan when I was nine and ten. There were nails pounded into one of the walls on which we hung all of our coats and boots were lined up neatly underneath. The door to the basement was white and orange striped and never latched.

The linoleum in the living was cracked and worn with several areas worn all the way through. The kitchen was better since it was a new addition but it had never been finished with trim around the windows or baseboard.

I knew I couldn't do anything about the little room except put a clean rug down in hopes it would distract from the cracks and try to hang a curtain of sorts to hide most of the walls and our coats. I asked Mom for permission to make curtains for the room. She didn't answer immediately but told me I could paint the woodwork in the living room and if I wanted to I could take the drop ceiling tiles down and paint them too.

I was happy to make any improvements and proceeded to take the tile down. Several hours later Daddy came into the living room to view my progress and then started to measure the little room. A little later a driver came and Daddy left with him.

When he came home that evening I was thrilled to see that he had bought things to transform the ugly little corner. Under his capable hands a closet emerged and the walls were covered with beautiful mahogany. The floor was fixed and new linoleum put down. I could hardly believe how something that had looked so awful for all these years was suddenly the nicest spot in the house.

We pulled out the old linoleum from the living room and were happy to find that over the years the previous owners used to lay new linoleum on top of the old without gluing it down or anything. The third layer was a soft golden brown in a pattern to make it look like a rug. It didn't appear to have much wear so we left it. With several coats of wax it became gleaming and with fresh paint on all the woodwork I was pleased with how the living room looked.

Daddy said the trim for the kitchen would have to wait a while yet, but I didn't mind. I was deeply grateful that he had taken time from his busy woodworking shop to make the house a little nicer before LV came for the first time.

8 comments:

  1. What a sweet, sweet story. Your daddy's a darling!
    Sharon

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  2. How sweet that your father would do such a thing for his girl! Perhaps he wanted to keep you a bit longer! ;~D

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  3. SO cute!! You sure hit the nail on the head - any little flaw becomes so magnified when you know company's coming. When my kids have "company" they always tell us not to ask them too many questions. As if! Of course I do anyway - what kind of mom would I be if I didn't?? HA HA

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  4. You probably mentioned this before but when did the youth start going with the Young Folks? Did your church start at 16 or 17? Just curious :-) Thanks for sharing all your memories! They're really intersting to read.
    God bless,
    Kate

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  5. Wonderful post...as the queen of make do I can really relate to this. In raising my children we were just poor country folk and some of the homes we lived in sound very much as you described or worst. I would sometimes became embarrassed at the thought of having guest over. But,always managed to make things cozy enough....this may seem funny but,I have always imagined that all Amish folks lived in beautiful big farm houses,immaculately clean and uncluttered. I guess because the only ones I have ever visited were on movies I had watched...smile. I still live in a very humble home but,I am very grateful to God for the home I do have when so very many have none at all...thanks for sharing your wonderful stories with us....blessings

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  6. wow thanks Maryann, now I have a challenge for the rest of us all, do we go to that same Love and have our homes and hearts all in tip top shape for our husbands, do you think it would make any differences,
    that means I'd better get with it right now and see if he notices.Tee Hee

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  7. Your father was a grand man! I got misty eyed reading this post. Please come visit the miracle makeover posts too! Anne

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  8. I have really enjoyed reading your blog. Thank you for visiting my meager blog too. I think having guests post is a great idea. I don't think I have ever heard of anyone doing that before. It is fascinating to hear different perspectives on Amish life. I was raised in a Christian home and as a family we're busy in our local body of believers. We don't shun modern convenience, but there are some "conveniences" I would rather not embrace such as television, most all radio, going out to eat and various other "stuff" that could clutter up our lives. I sometimes wish I did not have to go to work everyday in an office, but since my husband is disabled we really need the income. I do get to have fun in the garden and we raise chickens and sell eggs, etc. so we are still "farmers". Often I tell people that I'm a "pioneer woman with a full-time job". I don't know any homesteader or otherwise occupied woman that is not employed full-time. It is a mighty job raising children and then on top of that keeping house and being a good wife and gardening, putting by what the garden provides. If I didn't "work full-time" I certainly would not be "unemployed" :)

    Thank you for sharing so many wonderful thoughts with us.

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Thank you so much for taking time to comment. I love hearing your thoughts.