Thursday, October 1, 2009

Today’s Definition-Mixed Emotions

I was planning to varnish the new porch tomorrow, but it rained tonight and now, they are soaking wet.  On the one hand, it’s been over a month, and we haven’t had enough dry days in a row to do it so far, and I’m worried that they will discolor or warp or something.   On the other hand, if I can’t varnish, I have 3 whole days off to do things that are much more fun!!!   Mixed emotions.

Once upon a time, there was a house.  This house had once been fine and stately and beloved.  Then, it became a rental property and was mightily unloved.  For many years. 

Then came the Wren Family, who fell in love with the house and bought it.  That was 5 years ago.  We’ve spent the last 5 years working on the inside, as time and money allowed.   Still a long way to go on that, but we just call it character and let it go at that.

Last fall, we started on the outside.  Our house has a lovely wrap around porch, or, as we call it in these parts, a veranda.  Ok, fine.  No one but realtors call them veranda, but isn’t it a lovely word?  The floors of the porch were made up of pieces of tin, rotted boards, and gaping holes.  Since we wanted to use the porch swing at the end of the porch, we slapped some plywood over the worst of it and warned guests to step carefully. 

Our first outside project to was replace the floor.  We chose to use tongue-and-groove pine, and then paint it a really exotic color.  But, when he put the boards down, they were so gorgeous, and they had such wonderful grain, that we couldn’t paint them.  So, we stained and varnished them.


The porch-before


And after:

Lights! Lights! Lights! #1

Please ignore the rotted porch posts.  That was Stage II.  At the top left of the picture, you may have noticed that the new porch did not extend down the side of the house.  It remained a patchwork of old plywood until last month. 

Ok, here’s the thing.  This nice tongue-and-groove flooring is expensive.  We had this old Victorian painted this summer.  Current house restoration budget is currently somewhere below zero.  But, the house looked so nice, and the side of the porch looked so ugly. Then, my husband had a scathingly brilliant idea.

Here, look and see if you can see what we did.

Close up

The section on the left is the new section, the one on the right is the old.  Ignore the dirt, it had been walked on all morning with muddy shoes.  I actually mop this floor, did I mention that?  Me.  Who is allergic to all things related to housework.  Somehow, mopping outside is much more pleasant than mopping inside.  But, I digress.

The new boards on the left have been stained but not varnished.  They should blend in perfectly when I get them varnished.  But wait, these are not tongue-and-groove floor boards.  Tomorrow, I’ll show you how we made them.  We floored about 84 square feet for under $50. 

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