Friday, August 21, 2009

The REAL reason I haven't done anything this summer... I'm PREGNANT!

That's right, folks! 18 weeks now and counting... It's sort of at the point where I can't disguise it very well anymore, so the jig is up, so to speak. As far as the house goes, it's like a curse and a blessing. A curse because it really bugs me to see all the exterior paint that still needs to be shaved, but a blessing because I actually have to relax a little! I'm playing it safe because there is DEFINITELY lead in that peeling exterior paint, and it's best just to save that for another time. (ya, like when there's a baby crawling around getting his hands in the lead paint dust!... just kidding)

I think when most people are pregnant, they get all excited about putting together a nursery. But to them, all that means is picking paint, spreading it on the walls, and buying some new baby furniture. Maybe add in a few decorative items. So simple and quaint! Well, it's just not quite like that for us. First, we have to figure out where the nursery will go. And then, depending on where we pick, it could mean some major work. Here's our options:

1. Change the already mostly complete guest room over.
Advantages with this room - it's on the same floor as our bedroom and would be the simplest conversion, meaning walls, ceiling, floors, electric, and lights are already done - the most like a normal person's nursery project. Disadvantages - we can't fit a crib AND a guest bed in that room, so the guest bed needs a new location. Plus, there's no heat in that room, so we'd need to get some kind of space heater or other solution.

2. Fix up the attic space above the kitchen. Advantages with this room - it would be on the same floor as our bedroom (circled in yellow). Disadvantages - everything else. The room is poorly insulated, if insulated at all. All the walls would have to be demo-ed, electricity wiring and insulation added, new drywall put up, a new floor put in, the window would need to be repaired and have a storm window added, plus we would have to deal with the sloping ceiling. We thought about adding some cute cubbies or something to the kneewalls, but the time the built-ins would be put in, the room becomes very long and very narrow. Plus, as with option 1, there's no heat in this room. Not to mention the weird entry into this room. You have to go through the bathroom, into the "closet room" and through another doorway (follow the blue arrows).

3. Fix up the attic space above the main house. There are really 2 options within this option:

3a. Create the attic space we actually want. Advantages - it would really improve the useable space of the house and up the resale value. We would knock out the walls between the 2 rooms:


and create one bigger room. It could be a room that could actually become a child's room/playroom. There is a perfect space at the window to create the window seat/bookshelf unit I would love to have. Disadvantages - it would have to be some major work - demo some walls, repair and open up the stairway , add some electric and lighting, lay down a new floor, deal with a chimney smack in the middle of the room, actually make the window seat built-in. Then the major disadvantage is that we would have to walk up and down the stairs every time the baby wakes up.

3b. Just fix up one of the attic rooms. This could be fairly simple. Advantages - the walls are in decent shape, so it could just be some minor wall repair, painting, a couple of outlets, and a rug. This is also the best repaired original window in the house. Disadvantages - again, it would still be on a different floor. And with the knee walls, it's pretty small.

After humming and hawing (as my father would say) over all these options, I think we have decided to do option 1 and move the guest room bed up to option 3b. That should be the simplest for us.

It would be nice to have option 3a for the longer run, though. But that will probably have to give way to the future phase 1 garage addition and phase 2 garage/house connector with a mudroom (potentially including a kitchen and 2nd floor additions) Hey, it's nice to dream, at least!