"I was seriously considering a special alteration to the original plans that would effectively conceal the body of a certain municipal building inspector..."Are there any missing inspectors? I presume Lew was kidding. You were Lew, weren't you?
So far at least, had I made that "special alteration", I'd have nobody to place therein. Last week the gas and plumbing rough-ins of our future kitchen were approved and today the electrical inspector walked away happy. Nearly all of the exposed structural parts are in fine shape and, instead of opening walls and floors, we can start closing. Adequate planning and excellent tradespeople are the keys. We have a slight advantage on the latter because we raised our own plumber / gas fitter and he's a son generous with time and attention.
The good weather better hold though because the not-too-old 80% efficient furnace has been ripped out to make way for one that rates at 97%. It seems that is some weeks away. The old hot water tank is gone, replaced with an on-demand system. We removed a wood burning fireplace and we're upgrading the windows and insulation. The aim is to give this old house a smaller footprint on the environment and make it a more affordable and comfortable home that will last us another four decades.
The toughest part has been living without a kitchen. Restaurants and take-out joints quickly lost appeal when we began to rely on them to feed our family's three generation assemblage.
Northern Insights will remain relatively inactive for a while yet. While the kitchen and family room renovation is proceeding well, the next stage is a second floor addition. That will provide sleeping and play space for three little ones who've come with Mom to live with us.
That provides challenges but, as an old friend said to us last weekend, it will provide opportunity for connections with grandchildren that go well beyond birthday parties and Christmas.
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