Thursday, March 16, 2006

Corners of Our Home 7

There is a reason I am running out of corners to share.

Our house is a work-in-progress. This is the current view from the end of our bed. It is our master bath.

bathroom redo

When we bought the house from its original owner in 2001, I was 6 months pregnant with the big bug. I had told D that the only way I would move to "the Valley" was if there was a pool. (It gets up over 100 F most days between July and October in our particular corner of The Val'. As we were signing the papers for the house the woman owner, in her 80s, told me that the only place hotter than her yard in the summer, was hell. She wasn't kidding.) This house had a pool. It didn't have a working kitchen, laundry facilities, working a/c - but it had a pool. It was also in an area that D had had his sights on for some time. The development was constructed in 1955 by the Alexander Company. Alexander was inspired by the Case Study Houses and by the work of developers such as Eichler. He is most remembered for the thousands of homes he constructed in Palm Springs, including renovating the famous Racquet Club, and for his own home - popularly known as Elvis' "Honeymoon Hideaway". He hired the architecture duo of Palmer and Krisel - who had designed his home in Palm Springs - and set to work. They are great houses. Not too big. Lots of light - floor to ceiling windows in every room (except the baths) and clerestory windows at each end of the house. High, open beam ceilings. Utilizing innovative materials and construction methods to build what were, at the time, affordable modernist homes. We loved it. But saw that it would be a lot of work. Nothing had been done to it since the early '70s and alone and in her declining years, it hadn't been maintained by the owner as well as it should have been. So D set to work redoing the kitchen and laundry (priorities with a babe on the way). And I went into labour. Early. The big bug arrived and my in-laws graciously stepped in, picking up laundry each evening and returning it the following morning. We did have a working fridge and hot-plate and everyone saw that we were well cared for. The appliances arrived about the same time as my parents - to meet their first granddaughter. My dad and D made all the necessary installations and finishings and we settled in to our new family life.

It seems that from that time on we have been a little behind schedule. D is doing almost all of the work himself. And with a full-time job and two kids it takes even more time. We have watched - enviously - as childless friends renovated homes quickly and efficiently. And while I wish the master bath was finished - I wouldn't change our path for anything! So here we are. With some corners finished. Some not. Next on our list - the yard. Will keep you updated...

By the way - this is what the bathroom is to look like... soon. I keep it tacked beside our bed. So that when I wake every morning to view the construction at the end of our bed, I can turn and remind myself where we are going.


More corners here.

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