Rainy Day With Issac and Plans For Tomorrow

There are many areas around us that are getting hit with huge amounts of rain.  We have slipped between the bands of Issac’s ever expanding footprint.  We have received at least four inches of rain so far, but it has been spread out over the last thirty-six hours.  Most rains have been in the form of a steady shower.  Just what we need!  The whole area has greened back up.  Amazing how fast plant life seems to recover.

The rains have put my barn work on hold for most of the weekend.  I did however start and finish replacing the stair risers and treads to our basement last night.  They were just grade lumber that had been covered with carpet.  After one of the grandkids spilled some paint near the top of the stairs promoting the removal of the carpet,  I thought that it would be a perfect time to replace the stairs with some stainable pine.  I’d bought the material last year.  It has been patiently waiting for installation in the basement.

Most likely we will do a couple of indoor projects this year that we’ve had on the list for a long time.  One would include moving our washer and dryer to the basement.  In the process the old laundry would become our pantry/mudroom.  The basement will get a laundry, bathroom and a sewing room for Theresa.  I’ve already begun the running the copper for the water supply.  The waste and gray water were roughed in during construction ten years ago.

The new pantry/mudroom will get a set of cabinets that I’ll move from their present home next to the stairs.  They will fit perfectly wall to wall in the present laundry.  I can picture shelves from counter top to ceiling where the washer/dryer presently are sitting.  The slop sink will be moved to the basement, but I plan on pouring a concrete counter with an under-mount sink in the pantry.  The counter top that is on the cabinets now unfortunately has an access hole drilled in it for the computer/phone wiring.  I would have gladly reused it, but the hole lands in a bad location and the laminated particle board counters do not hold up well in wet locations around sinks.  Our kitchen counters are the same material and really showing their disdain for moisture around the sink and dishwasher.

 I want to blowout the door opening and part of the wall above the stairs pictured below.  Our big dislike of the present setup is that most folk who visit come in through the garage.  At present, the first thing they encounter besides our mess of a garage,  is our dirty laundry.  I would much rather have them encounter shelves stocked with our canning efforts than my dirty britches.  The way I’m seeing it this week,  the new opening will run corner to corner on the present wall with the door.  I’m thinking that I’ll finish out the opening with a craftsman style column and maybe a transom.  It would be a cool  spot for a small stained glass panel in a transom.  The pantry will get a tile floor.

Another wall will be partially removed in the kitchen.  We need a new range hood that will draw some of the heat from summer canning.  Rarely do we run the AC here, unless the humidity and heat hold through the night.  The house is positioned to take advantage of prevailing winds and the summer tract of the sun.  Passive solar works!  However there is nothing that will heat the house up more than the stove going full bore canning a butt load of tomatoes.  I might as well crank up a fire in the wood stove.  We’ve tried running the whole house fan when canning but it draws too much and effects the efficiency of the stove.  Plus it’s damned loud.

So the idea is to cut the wall between the dining area and the kitchen in half.  Install an island range hood and add a bookcase on the dining room side and wall top counter between the rooms.  We eventually wanted to replace the window and run counter across the front wall.  Move the sink in front of the new window and expand the island peninsula.  We will lose the present cabinet space above the range hood and the cabinet to the right of the hood, but the new shelf space we would gain in the pantry would more than make up for any lose.

 It never fails that when the whole famn damily is here for a meal we run out of places to sit.  Any additional eating space we can pick up by an expansion of the island and moving the sink would be most welcome.  We can always dream, but I like to dream affordably.  Re-using most of the cabinetry and adding usefulness by subtraction of poorly thought out design pays well.  My blogger buddy Annie gets credit as a huge influence on our design ideas.  If you don’t read her blog you should.

So now that I’ve lined up the next few projects maybe I’ll get the barn finished before I retire in nine or ten years.  I make myself laugh too much.



  1. Ed said,

    September 2, 2012 at 1:43 PM

    You sir, are a glutton for punishment.

  2. Woody said,

    September 2, 2012 at 2:46 PM

    I totally agree.

  3. Ron said,

    September 2, 2012 at 7:36 PM

    Lots of activity going on over there. Canning sure does heat a house up… one of these years I hope to move that chore outdoors.

  4. Woody said,

    September 3, 2012 at 6:29 AM

    Ron..not as much activity being focused on jobs left undone. I've got a year or better of work on the barn at this current pace. I won't get to any of the inside work for some time. Rainy day thinking out loud.

  5. edifice rex said,

    September 5, 2012 at 8:32 PM

    Hey Woody, thanks for the shout! Well, I hope I have influenced ya'll in a good way! lol! I will say a separate pantry is a wonderful thing and I think ya'll will love the concrete countertops. Sorry I just now have seen this post; I've been in a back pain induced stupor for the past couple of days and not online much. Oh, and the stair treads look great!

  6. Woody said,

    September 6, 2012 at 3:17 AM

    Thanks Annie! The pantry and countertops are exactly what I was referring to. I also will be using the rebar railings in the barn loft stairs and porch railings.

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