Leveling floors & ceilings in 120 year old farm house.

First…A little history.

Back in 1985 my wife and I and our 5 children (at the time) purchased an old farm house out in the country that was built in stages beginning in 1894.  We had lived in the city and felt it would be a good idea to move to the country.  Anyway, after about a year of looking at “out in the country” properties, we found this one.  I liked it at first sight.  Being young and strong (but not overly bright), I underestimated what I was getting into in regards to the amount of work and money this place needed.  But, like I said, when you are young, there is that feeling of invincibility…that feeling of “Yea, I can do that…piece of cake”.  Kinda’ like that saying “ask a teenager, they know everything”.

Anyway, I am not complaining.  I have actually enjoyed my life here and the work I have put into the place.  There is a sense of pride and accomplishment when you step back and say “wow, was I really able to do that!”  I really enjoy the projects (once I start them).  One of my biggest struggles is getting started.  Often I will come up with reasons why a particular project is too hard (too expensive, beyond my skill level, too busy…whatever).  But, after my wife plants the seed in my head, and after all my initial resistance, I begin to mull it over, research it, ask lots of questions…then I get started.

This old house was an obvious, very rundown, handyman special.  It had very minimal electricity, no heat, no insulation, sagging floors & ceilings, and many other shortfalls.  In order to get the bank to even give us a mortgage on the place we had to first upgrade the electric to a 200A service in order to install necessary heating. 

Over the 28 years we have been here, the projects have been many…and ongoing.

I often tell people that I live in the projects.

My latest project has been to finally tackle one last unfinished room in the house.  This is an upstairs bedroom with a seriously sagging floor and ceiling along with failing plaster.  The floor & ceiling both sagged about 4″ to the center of the room in a saucer like manner.  If you placed a marble anywhere along the perimeter it would quickly roll to the center.

Tomorrow, I will explain the reasons behind the bowed floor along with how I dealt with it.  Until then…

Pictures of the upstairs bedroom project 

We Are People Not Machines

That is what I often say to my husband, the Handyman. He is one of those driven workers who puts his nose to the grindstone…. and I’m the flint who gives off the sparks, I guess. But I really think there is a deep truth in “to everything there is a season”.

Just my idea of a rest season is a little longer than his. So we haven’t done alot of projects, but Handyman did put up gutter guards to keep the gutters from clogging with leaves. I had him get out the leaf vacuum and my youngest son is using it… but it is very hard to move around; I should have bought the self-propelled type.

I am supposed to be doing the housecleaning around here, but as you can see I am blogging. I seem to have energy for other things, but not for housework and organizing and seasonal clothes changeovers.

It is the end of the outdoor season, and there are so many things I didn’t do. so why am I thinking up new projects?
This is the way of the d-i-your-selfer.

Handyman Gets Busy

It’s hardly ever what you plan, though. I let the Handyman know I was talking about the Kitchen remodel, but in the meantime he has found his hands full with the breaker to his office switching off every few minutes. He has been troubleshooting and conferencing with a buddy who is an Electrician. Right now they think it is a breaker gone bad. Who knew that breakers could break down when you most need them? The Handyman has been remarkably calm given the fact that it kept switching off the electricity while he was doing invoicing. Come to think of it…I’m remarkably calm; I’ll try not to think of that too much.

Anyway, I don’t think he is going to post until this thing is straightened out. Actually, until his computer is able to get up and running, he can’t post, not liking or being familiar with mine. Never fear though…. I do enough talking for the both of us and I’ll just chug along with telling my version of the Kitchen.

It’s always something, isn’t it? Is this a variation of the ….. ominous music Mushroom Factor …or something altogether different?

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