When Slim desired an indoor spot to rest and ruminate, he sought out a window seat in our recently finished third level. He was surprised to see that our attic project had, in fact, been completed. This time last year, the initial demo and removal process had barely begun. He knows us. He’s aware of our inclination to put off and procrastinate. And he knew how much there was in the attic to be removed and/or re-situated: the enormous whole-house fan in the floor, bulky HVAC ducts, chimney supports, the cedar closet (the only semi-finished space), and loads and loads of old insulation. Not to mention the diverse accumulation of stuff the attic had housed.
“You astound me! I thought you’d still be waffling over first steps!,” Slim exclaimed. I noticed that he subtly directed these comments more to my husband than to me.
He and the pack quickly made their way to the front dormer. “The ideal look-out! From up here, we can keep watch on the property and the road. And how nice to have a floor that goes all the way to the window!”
Slim appreciated the exposed-beam aesthetic. “Looks like one of those medieval half-timbered manor house rooms you like so much. I didn’t realize this was what you had in mind!” This remark he directed squarely at me. As I said, he knows us.
I didn’t have that concept in mind. But fortuitously, and thanks to the patience, talent, and vision of our contractor, who happens to be a master craftsman, it turned out that way.
Slim loved the built-in art table that extends from a wall of vintage wood, both of which were conceived and created by that expert craftsman. I’d wanted an expansive work surface, suitable for painting and building my miniature houses. Because the large central duct would be difficult to relocate, our contractor suggested encasing it in wood and positioning the table above. He’d carefully saved the old planks that covered the attic’s limited floor space. He planed down each piece, preserving the original saw marks, and reassembled them, quilt-like, to make a support wall. Another of his clever ideas was a roomy pull-out storage compartment located at each end of the wall.
“I’m getting inspired, just sitting here!, ” Slim proclaimed, leafing through a book of paintings by John Constable. “In all my decades kicking around this big wide world, I haven’t tried my hand at art. Never too late, right?”
Slim’s thoughts continued. “Maybe I’ll do some painting. Or take up wood-working. I do love architecture, and I’ve sure seen most styles and epochs first-hand. ” Eyeing my dollhouses, he offered, “This room calls out for a miniature medieval manor house, doesn’t it?”
He’s right, of course. Looks like I’ve found a partner in craft.
“But first, a little reading,” pronounced Slim, as he headed toward the cane-backed sofa. “And perhaps just the slightest bit of restorative shut-eye. We creative types need our rest.”
May you, too, get some rest before a very happy Halloween!