Project(ed) Progress

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We’ve been making slow but steady progress on the many, many projects ongoing here at chez us. Having let the oiled pieces off-gas in the garage for about a week I took the opportunity to put them up this week – so we now have a step into our bathroom…


Which is very, very pleasing.

There is a rawness to the edges you cut into a building. It’s something that most people rarely see, because most people live and occupy finished spaces. But when you build it yourself you feel them. They rub against your daily existence reminding you of the fragility of things that we rely on. Of how much work it takes to build and make whole any given thing.

Our house has been on this edge since we owned it and in many places, where we’ve slowly covered the torn holes with trim, it’s easy to forget they exist. But in our bathroom, which curiously feels incredibly luxurious now, the ripped and coarse edges are still there. At last we are getting the trim in, but you still now the space isn’t finished yet. Despite the room itself being more or less complete, you have to pass through this short void, this space where you feel the distance between the plan and the reality. And now, we’re in that limnal moment when both the finished and the unfinished edges coexist.

It’s amazing how quickly you forget, though. All the places where the trim is up? I forget that underneath lies the coarse cut edges of drywall, nailheads just hammered flat to the surface, and the fragile, tituratable edge of the limestone. Perceptions are often shaped by what’s on the surface, and it’s so easy to forget what lies beneath.

I now need to cut some more pieces, shape them to fit, oil them and [repeat]. The biggest single job on the trim front (ignoring the skirting) is the bathroom, which I’ve kinda mentally put as my “up next”, although I should take the opportunity of having the ladder in the house tomorrow to grab measurements of the bookshelves above the doorways. Things that I can’t easily measure when Kathryn isn’t here.

We’ve also made some progress on Kathryn’s studioshed – Kathryn’s got the floor now fully grouted, so there’s just cleaning, sealing it, a bit of spray-foam under the door, popping in a few outlets and…trim. Always and forever, trim.

And in the garage I’ve made progress with the wiring that will – eventually – link to the studioshed. Thankfully, yesterday was less of a mare of a job than the first day (which was utterly miserable), and we’re now nearing the denouement, with cable now running from the south wall (still needs some conduit and an outlet box) to the east wall (needs the outlet boxes screwing to the wall) to the north wall (about 50% of conduit is done, about 25% of cable is done). I’ve also worked out what I need to do to the ceiling lights so they’ll work – which is good – because I didn’t really want to have to make up a bunch of new cable, and I don’t think I need to.

And I glued in the final filler pieces to the crates that will be our replacement media-stand. They’re dry now, so it’s time to break out the chalk paint (never used this before, but considering the shoddiness of the underlying material, chalk paint seemed like a good idea – we bought some paintbrushes today for that job, and some masking tape), and we need to lasercut the tiles to go onto the visible sides and the top surface. We miiiiight do some of that tomorrow.

And today, which wasn’t really a project day because it’s a holiday weekend here in the US*, we spent much of the day pottering in the garden. We finally cut back our raspberries – I have concluded that I have no idea when you’re meant to cut back raspberries. The advice online is either “immediately they’ve fruited” “spring” “late winter” “when there’s an A in the day and the moon is in conjunction with Venus” or “when I say so”. There’s also a whole thing about whether the canes are this year’s growth or last year’s growth…

…so we, uh cut them. I think we did it right – although I’ve just (literally as I was typing) realised that we didn’t do one the raspberry bush on the other side of the garden. Which we’ll need to do, too. Bother.

We also dug up a bunch of bramble that’s been bothering me since we got here (yay!). That’s been slow progress over the years that we’ve been here, and now – at last – that frees up another bed. Albeit a bed with craptastic soil. Although since the chickens have routled about it in it’s definately better. We also split the artichoke, which is a job that’s been overdue for years, and planted the honeyberries my sister gave us for Christmas.

We also stopped by the Urban Farm and Garden to get some fresh seed planting whatsits (because at least one of our other ones leaks), and some coir pots. They also have peat-free (albeit potting, not seedling) soil… And this year – for once – possibly for the first time ever, we put a bunch of our seeds in at the right time. Now we just need (a) them to sprout (considering many of the seeds are ancient) (b) us to keep them alive, and (c) us to get them into the garden and protect them from the chickens.


We actually have a whole bunch more seeds to plant that go in the greenhouse, and – some to direct sow (assuming that it’s not hacking down with rain in the morning). All in all, things are moving in a direction towards completion.

* We were actually thinking of “getting away” for the weekend but kept failing to organize it and now it’s here.


Kate's allegedly a human (although increasingly right-wing bigots would say otherwise). She's definitely not a vampire, despite what some other people claim. She's also mostly built out of spite and overcoming oppositional-sexism, racism, and other random bullshit. So she's either a human or a lizard in disguise sent to destroy all of humanity. Either way, she's here to reassure that it's all fine.