From Rattery to Spiffery- the Bedroom

rattery bedroom



This is is after we’d cleaned up a lot and packed up a bunch of things.

Then we cleaned a little more:

This bedroom had a toilet in it.  Not a bathroom, a toilet:

My great-grandmother was unable use the stairs to get to the upstairs bathroom, so they put in a toilet and sink.  She just had a screen dividing it from her bedroom.

 We had hoped to expand this and put a bathroom in the bedroom downstairs, but things didn’t work out like we wanted, so we had to just remove them.  There is only bathroom, and it’s upstairs.

Here’s the bedroom in the midst of being painted.  Our painter, btw, is married to somebody the Equschick and Shasta have known since she and the EC were about 8 years old. We used to live in the same 299 population town.  Now we live about two hours apart in an entirely different state. Life’s funny that way.

This next one is after we’d cleaned out everything, a friend had fixed the walls and windows, we’d painted, and polished:

spiffery bedroom


The blue is kind of funny. It’s the only color the kids picked that I really did not like (and others said the same thing, privately), but all of us who didn’t like it find that it grew on us, and now we love it. It’s very pretty.  Now, what the newlyweds need is a big white four poster, something very cottage or beachy.  What they have is a very pretty wooden double from the 1940s, and it was in the house already (new mattress, though).  Shrug.  They aren’t complaining.

There’s a lot of history behind this house, and there’s  a lot of love behind the remodeling of this house, and some heart-ache as well.  Our contractor was an elder in our church, a much loved family friend, an older brother in the faith, and he died abruptly, without warning.  He stood up, and collapsed of a brain aneurysm.   It’s impossible to go through the house and not see his hand, his touch, everywhere.

People came out to help- they painted, cleaned, sanded, polished, wired, heaved, shifted, carried, buried. Boys came to visit us from three states away and helped with a lot of things- their favorite part was when they shifted the ancient, broken, corroded, and very heavy bathtub out of its place in the floor and out the window- that was three years ago or so.  A brand new Christian came out to help with the floors. A math professor came to do whatever he was told to do- and blistered his hands with the cleaning fluid he used for whatever he was cleaning. Somebody whose baby had just recovered from a scary illness came to clean out the fridge, and she brought somebody else who is fighting depression.  A young man waiting to go off to college came to help with the floors, and a professional painter with grandchildren came to advise and help with those same floors.  We tried to count them up, but we don’t even know for sure who all of them were.  One afternoon we stopped by the house to show a friend, and surprised somebody in the stealthy act of putting another coat of sealant on the dining room floor.  Somebody else came out, took the front door lock and cleaned it up, polished it, and had a locksmith re-key it (I broke the ancient key, thin as cheese, soft as butter, in the lock ten years ago), and bring it back.  Shasta spent more hours than I can count sanding and refinishing the kitchen cabinets and doing other things – sometimes until the wee hours.  Strider came out and stayed up with him working on the house at least a couple of times.

There’s love, generosity, friendship, service, and Christian compassion in every drop of paint, ever brush stroke, every patched crack, ever surface, and beneath most of the surfaces as well.

We have always been richly, richly blessed by our Christian family.  It’s large, generous, compassionate, and we don’t know what we’d do without it.


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  1. Kat Menard
    Posted March 25, 2014 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    well, until the four poster shows up, how about a white bedspread and some big ikat print pillows, with gauzy white curtains on the windows… Love it and love how much good will has gone into its transformation.

    • Headmistress, zookeeper
      Posted March 25, 2014 at 11:35 am | Permalink

      Her dog is black, sheds a lot, and sleeps on the bed. But the curtains would be pretty.

  2. Lynn
    Posted March 25, 2014 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    not on topic, sorry, but I thought you might like to see this. To my mind, if one sends one’s children to school, this is what it should look like..

    Swanson School – good stuff – now this is a more normal childhood, and certain to produce smarter, more creative, more co operative adults.

    Check out this Video

  3. Elizabeth S
    Posted March 25, 2014 at 11:55 am | Permalink

    What a touching story! Thank you for sharing 🙂

  4. jules
    Posted March 25, 2014 at 3:17 pm | Permalink

    You are very fortunate to have a family like that.

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