There was a BIG change at Pie Cottage late this week. I’m not sure if it’s symbolic of my life, but an old wall came down and beautiful morning light is now streaming in!
Taking out this wall is something that I have wanted to do since I first saw my sweet little cottage but one thing or the other ($$$) always kept it on the back burner of the stove patiently simmering. The heat got turned up over the last two weeks and I did it.
I had to really search hard to find ANY photo that that would show you the interior wall and living room of the cottage before changes took place. The one below is from a Womens’ Soiree in 2005 that I used to host one evening a month. (Hmmm…maybe I should do that again…) You can see that the interior front wall had a door and window (that opened into a tiny sun room that was once an open porch), and the wall on the left was part of a miniscule bedroom. I’m reminded of the story of the teeny tiny woman who lived in the teeny tiny house I used to read when I was a teeny tiny girl.
Before: The Teeny Tiny House.
The first step was last year…in anticipation of moving home from Seattle after several years of renting out my house…
…before my furniture, grand piano, pie pans, rolling pins and cookbooks were to arrive, I slept in front of the woodstove…
…and each morning I rolled up my bag and moved my dad’s favorite vintage 1963 chair close to it to warm my feet while I drank a cup of coffee. This was rather minimalist living if I do say so.
I’m no stranger to simple living.
I stripped off wallpaper, sanded and painted walls which hadn’t seen a brush for more than 14 years.
Carpenter Jim found a set of reclaimed French doors in a barn 15 miles west of me under a tarp. I bought them for $70 dollars and spent a week or so sanding and painting them white from the dark forest green they originally had been.
He knocked out that old wall, installed them and…
The new-old French doors installed!
I had light for the first time in this room! (Sound Track: Here Comes the Sun)
Then a year later I did what I had wanted to do since first seeing what was to become Pie Cottage in 1999. I took a deep breath and made arrangements for that left hand wall to come down.
Before I even moved into this house, I had a dream about it. Really! In that dream I saw one big room with lots of light streaming in and views of mountains and water.
When my real estate agent showed the cottage to me all those years ago I had an instant flash of recognition.
This was my house!
I made up my mind immediately to purchase it. (Yah, I’m an Aires and we tend to make lightning fast decisions when inspiration strikes.) But, let’s move forward to present time.
Carpenter Jim sheeted-off the wall with plastic to keep the disruption to a minimum.
Plastic Sheeting Up
We worked around each other for two weeks and sometimes I just needed to walk away from the noise and inevitable dust that lay a little film over everything including Greta and me! Every night I brushed her out and showered it off of me.
Now, it’s shouldn’t come as a surprise to you, but anyone who works or helps out at Pie Cottage can always count on treats and over the years Carpenter Jim has had his share of homemade pies and little cinnamon sugar rollups with leftover dough.
Pie + Love = Happy
Bang, bang, BANG!
I was busy typing away at my computer monitor, my back to the project. I heard the plastic sheeting rattling and a hammer knocking on the wood supports.
And, then I heard Carpenter Jim say,”Wow!”
I turned around and here’s what met my eyes…
The sheeting was down!
We both stood there stunned trying to take in the complete and utter transformation that had just taken place.
Carpenter Jim said he that he really didn’t know what it was going to be like when the whole space was revealed. I had a huge grin on my face and was just about to jump up and down. I’ve known Jim for about 25 years and he was quick to remark that he hadn’t seen me this happy in a LONG time!
He used his shop-vac to get as much dust out as possible, and we moved the big pieces of furniture around to set up a rough workshop space. I had a class to teach the very next day. Cutting it a little close. But, I was so darned thrilled I took him out to our local Gastropub for supper and a celebratory drink!
When I came home I had THE BEST time mopping the floor, putzing around and setting up the workshop table. Here’s what it looked like before I went to bed around midnight.
First Night with Wall Down
And here’s what I woke up to in the morning!
Check out my new space!
There’s lots more to go. Painting this week and a brand new bamboo floor to unify the space will be coming the following. And as if by magic, yesterday Carpenter Jim found another set of French doors in Seattle that come very close to matching the set he found at the old barn a year ago. They’ll open up the room to my back deck and let the outside in!
Am I happy?
Oh my gosh YES!
Life Lesson: Dreams Do Come True!