Day 1: And so it begins…

I had a frontal lobotomy in March. At least I’m assuming that’s what happened because—after years of merely daydreaming about getting my kitchen, powder room and laundry room renovated—I actually picked up the phone and called someone. Yesterday, the contractors arrived—with crowbars, sledgehammers and chainsaws. I think I heard the house scream.

You can find my reasons for wanting this reno here (I’ll admit, the pantry sewage was a biggie).

Now, here’s what I’ve learned after just one day of home renovation bliss:

1. Chainsaws make cats stress fart. I’m keeping both cats in my office during the demo. Just me and two very old cats in the smallest, stuffiest room of the house. When the construction crew revved their chainsaws, my cats revved their colons. I bet I’d lose my eyebrows if I lit a match.

2. Old homes didn’t fare well in the ‘70s. The kitchen in this 200-year-old home used to have solid wood floors, crown molding, a servant’s staircase and beautiful baseboards and trim. Not anymore. Back in the bell-bottom era someone “updated” the place by building a kitchen like the one in That ‘70s Show (but less attractive).

3. Sometimes “built to last” is a bad thing. The ‘70s cabinets appear to have been cut and installed one board at a time. Each board was glued in place and then attached to the core of the earth using row upon row of long screws. It took multiple, window-rattling blows with a sledgehammer to make even one cabinet budge.

4. Three electrical panels is a bad sign. I spent all last week emptying the kitchen, powder room and laundry room. I dragged everything down into the basement, then painstakingly set up what would have been a fairly functional kitchen. Then the demolition crew disconnected the power flowing through the most worrisome electrical panel. My basement kitchen is now completely black. I’d light candles but, well, see #1.

We’re into day two, now. The windows are rattling, and one of the Incredible Farting Felines is sitting in my lap. I’ll be cooking in the dark and washing the dishes in the bathtub. There will be wine involved.

16 thoughts on “Day 1: And so it begins…

  1. Colleen O'Neil

    I almost had a stress fart just reading this. Hope it goes quickly, and the results are worth these dark times. Thank goodness for wine!

    1. Brenda Post author

      Thank you, Colleen – wine will definitely be my go-to coping strategy. I hope it goes quickly, too, but I’ve heard rumors that this could take 8 to 12 weeks (due to all the plumbing, heating and wiring issues that need to be addressed before they can start putting the place back together) so I’m trying to keep my stamina up!

  2. Martha Orlando

    Lol, Brenda! What a flatulent fix you’ve gotten yourself into! Hope when the dust settles and the cats calm down, you will be happy with the renovation.

    1. Brenda Post author

      Thank you, Martha – since the kitchen was uninsulated, had some serious wiring issues and sewage leaks into the pantry, I’m quite certain I’ll be happy with the outcome. But this is going to be a looooong summer, oh my!

  3. Arnold Forsyth

    Good for you Brenda.
    Many years ago, when my Mother decided she was going to have the decorators in plus the painters then my Dad would leave on his annual fishing trip up north. I can remember those days.
    Good luck to you but I bet the place will look perfect when it is all finished.
    All the very best.
    Arnold and Carole

    1. Brenda Post author

      Your dad was a very smart man! Everyone has scattered here, too – only Ty is sticking around to see how this turns out 🙂


  4. Aunt Karen

    Okay so I planned my visit and exit at just the right time. With those old fart cats and everything else I would have been hard pressed to get my share of the wine. I just know it.
    Aunt Karen (of course)

    1. Brenda Post author

      Hello Auntie Karen,

      We would definitely have been arm-wrestling for the wine if you were here right now, yes! I did tell the construction crew that you were here in May, and asked them to NOT start until you’d made it safely to Ottawa [you’re welcome :-)]

  5. Aunt Karen

    I think I’d put those cars out for adoption. Of course you can’t tell anyone what hellish things those old farts will do.
    Auntie Karen


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