My almost 60 year-old house is undergoing the equivalent of a heart transplant this winter. Structual issues in the kitchen had to be addressed before the cabinets fell down, a leak in the upstairs bathroom had become crtical and as we got bids on the work, the downstairs bath sprung its own leak. So one by one the kitchen and both bathrooms are being gutted and redone.
The kitchen was finished about month ago, and I spent a weekend painting walls and ceiling, five years of culinary sins wiped away. Like confession, the most trying part is the preparation; I spent hours scrubbing away old wallpaper paste, patching nail pops, and masking trim. The only tough part of the painting itself was the celing. Even with my extension roller and step ladder it was hard going.
This weekend, with the walls out upstairs, Math Man seized the moment to insulate our woefully underinsulated roof. He and Crash cut batts, placed baffles and blew insulation into various corners that otherwise were unreachable. This involved, not suprisingly, crawling into tight space and balancing on the rafters.
While all this is going on, I'm in my study working on a column for the Standard & Times, deep into St. John Chrysostom's sermon on Hebrews (Christ is the refulgence of God's glory). Suddenly I'm wrenched from my contemplations of fiercely shining light and angelic choirs by the sounds of large bodies falling. "Oh (insert favorite swear word here), oh (insert second favorite swear word here)!!" I stand up, "Is everything OK?" Yes. And no. Math Man is undamaged, my beautifully painted ceiling has an 18" diameter hole in it. Oh my.
Measure of a good marriage, my relief that Math Man is unhurt far outweighs my sadness about the ceiling. Ceilings can be mended.
And speaking of ceilings, at the very end of the day, Crash slipped and took out part of the ceiling on the top of the stairs. Holy, holy, holy....that was the day!