In the beginning, there was the Flowered Wallpaper and the Painfully Limited Counterspace....
Demo work began right after Mark's 60th birthday, in mid-January.
The rebuilding started with insulation. Oh, yeah, it cost extra.
Drywalling is gymnastics with power tools.
The first cabinet goes up. They've all got to line up and hit their allowances from here.
Dan is an amazing carpenter. He lives a few doors down from us. Can't beat the commute.
A view of the door to the back porch, and the door to the back stairway to the second floor. And of all the construction stuff in between.
I think this refrigerator comes with its own GPS and a Find My Food app.
The appliances are in. The cabinets and drawers are loaded. Let the cooking commence!
Our thanks to Paul and John of Stahl Mowery.
Easter House was built in 1900. It's considered a Queen Anne Victorian.
A sideways glance.
This house is about 3000 square feet, five times the size of our apartment in Brooklyn.
When I walked into this space, I burst into tears. SOLD.
Living room re-do.
Lots of scraping.
I'm not a big fan of wallpaper. This room had a thick wallpaper border that our painters said was "like cement" to chip through. This is when I'm glad I'm not a do-it-yourselfer.
New paint job
I made yet another leap of faith, and let my Dear Husband pick the colors. He wasn't left solely to his own devices. He consulted my sister, the artist and art professor. She has pale blue ceilings in her home, down the street from ours.
Admiring the handiwork
Our painter, Josh, had to go over this section a couple of times to try to smooth out the waviness in the plaster. The trim along the top of the ceiling was painted to match the oak mantel.
Morning in America. Actually, Brooklyn.
Sunrise over the A.M.E. Bridge Street Church, on the corner of Jefferson Ave and Stuyvesant Ave, as seen from the stoop of our apartment.
Brooklyn Bridge tourists
I decided to walk over the bridge on my way to work one morning, thinking it would be a time for calm reflection. I was wrong. It was noisy from traffic and wall-to-wall with chattering tourists.
Garden Place, Brooklyn Heights
"Brownstone Brookyn" refers to several neighborhoods, including this one, Brooklyn Heights. Here on Garden Place, you can see why. A lovely little street, lined with townhouses that are clad in a sandstone known as brownstone. This was my home for four months while my Dear Husband was in Ada, unpacking boxes and dealing with the cable guy, while I wrapped up my 28 years of New York City living. My dear friends, Ed and Anne, allowed me to shelter in their lovely Garden Place home. It's been in Ed's family for four generations.
Brooklyn Heights is New York City's first suburb, a city in its own right until it was annexed by big, bad, Manhattan.
Window Box, Brooklyn Heights
Other neighborhoods, like Bedford-Stuyvesant, may boast gardens in their front yards, or scads of potted plants on the stoop. In Heights, it's all about the massive window boxes. The parlor windows have big stone platforms for them.
The barn out back.
This is my sister's and brother-in-law's barn. They have their art studios in them, as well as five cats. Or is it four? The numbers keep changing.
This was taken on a cold winter's morning, several years ago. I love the quality of the light, and the stillness. Barns always seem melancholy to me.
Front Porch Glider.
This is at my sister's place. The porch swing is where my husband and I spent a lot of time talking about how nice it'd be to live here.
Porch chairs, Ada.
Inviting, even without the cushions. I've always wanted a porch to sit and watch the world go by.
Tidbit was spotted by a man during the first big snow storm of 2013, and sheltered in a box by a man who was allergic to cats. Cat ladies from Brooklyn Animal Action, a heroic local rescue group, captured her. Tidbit was so riled up during her first visit to the vet, she had to be sedated for her examination. She was thought to be too far gone to socialize, and her ear was clipped as part of a "trap, neuter, release" strategy that would signal to future rescuers that she'd been put through the wringer already. Her foster mom thought she may have a chance at family life, and let me take her home.
Or is it Marilyn Monroe? The Bean looks like a famous Bert Stern photograph of the movie icon. Stringbean also came to us by way of Brooklyn Animal Action. We adopted her the weekend after Hurricane Sandy, in October 2012. I refused to name her Sandy.
Here's my first photo of Tidbit, in a cage in her foster home. She let me pet her. Little did I know that it would be months before she'd let me touch her again. She's been slow to warm up to cuddling.
Stringbean used to run up and down the stairs of our apartment at 5 in the morning, spurring our downstairs neighbor to say, "Can't you corral your cat?" We had to cage her at night.
She doesn't exhibit the same wiggy, late-night behaviors at Easter House. Must've been the neighbors.