In Decision

alcove 0119I haven’t posted about our house for awhile because of Mexico. (Everything, it turns out, is Mexico’s fault.)

Before he started work on our house, Jered, the subcontractor in charge of framing, took his family to Mexico. And this last week he has pulled his crew off our house to start another, while waiting for his crane operator to return from Mexico. (And before everything was Mexico’s fault, our backhoe operator was delayed because he was in Hawaii. Who knew this was such a hazard of winter builds?)

Assuming the crane operator doesn’t decide to just stay in Mexico, he’s supposed to be back on the job on Thursday, when it’s predicted to be snowing. Trusses thus may or may not go on starting this week. In the meantime, we have walls, just waiting and waiting.

But what this also means is that I only have until Thursday to make an irrevocable decision.

Many of these decisions that we have to make do not have to be be-all, end-all decisions. It’s not the most cost-effective way to do business, but if we pick a flooring we end up not liking, or make a mistake on the refrigerator we select, we can change our minds without too much trouble.

But before Thursday, before trusses (BT), I have to decide on a couple of interior walls. They’re already up, in the places the plans put them, but that was before we started measuring and realized how much the house is shrinking.

One of the bedrooms was intended to be 12 feet wide, and instead it’s going to be about 11. On the other side of this interior wall is an alcove in our Good (not so great, although it seemed big enough when I shoveled it out yesterday prior to measuring) Room. This alcove is roughly three feet deep by nine feet long, and it’s going to be my “library.”

So: do I push the bedroom wall farther east, to make the bedroom either 12 or even 13 feet wide, and narrow the alcove to two feet deep, or even make it so a foot-deep bookcase ends flush with the rest of the Good Room wall?

I took measurements of furniture in the current 12-foot-wide bedroom, and walkways, and the desk I wanted to add in there as well, and Oz and I headed out to the lot. Here’s the good news: we’re going to get plenty of sun in our Good Room. (Of course, I say this without a roof or a southern wall, but it was sure bright in there.)

And, no matter how wide the bedroom is, I don’t think I can fit the desk in it. The desk fit in my teenage bedroom, with the same dimensions as the current bedroom, but maybe my old dresser wasn’t as long. (We did lose about half a foot in length in this room as well.)

[I’m not feeling terribly articulate this morning. I apologize if this is a confusing post. I feel confused, and I’m writing it.]

Then it becomes a matter of how much space between furnishings I want. Currently the space between bed and dresser is over three feet; that’s liable to be cut down to around two. If we worry about wheelchairs, then here’s another place they won’t be accommodated. But this is the room where the door isn’t going to be wider than 30 inches (and that wall isn’t movable), so it’s probably not going to be the ADA room anyway — a room we hope never to need.

Here’s the thing: the alcove as it is currently (which is only open studs) seems like a very cozy space to me. I think if I shrink it down, it will lose this cozy, book-nook space.

The pride (for me) of our current house is my living-room bookcase. I had it custom-built Before Lynn. The construction is not the greatest, but it was set up with me in mind and what I wanted to place there. It takes up an entire wall, and it says this is who I am.

I am torn about whether to try to move this. Lynn is an adamant “no,” and I’m quite sure Dusty won’t want people thinking this is something he built. It’s eight feet tall, and new ceilings are going to be nine feet. It’s much too long for my alcove space, by three or four feet, although it’s in three sections, and the middle could be taken out, but then it’s about a foot too short. It’s also deeper than it needs to be, except for the stereo and my bound copies of old newspapers.

But I’m afraid whoever moves into this house won’t appreciate my bookshelves, and may even tear them out. Lynn is sure buyers would regard it as an amenity; when our realtors (I know that’s supposed to be capitalized, and not all agents are realtors, but let’s just go with it and not tell them) toured the house, they were completely indifferent to the Magnificence That Is My Bookcase.

No matter how my alcove/bedroom decision turns out, books are not going to have the prominence in the new house that they have here. The alcove, which I hope will help protect from the sun, also will keep the shelves out of sight until you draw up even with it.

I don’t know that this is a bad thing, and frankly, at this point, I don’t even know what I’m trying to say. Decisions aren’t my best thing, and even once they’re made I revisit them, seeing where I went wrong and trying to decide (!) if I should have made a different decision. And when it’s a decision that can’t be unmade . . . well, that just worsens everything.

We — at least me, since Lynn is on Day Three of sleeping through the day with some undiagnosed illness — are scheduled to meet Dusty tomorrow afternoon, in the new house, to discuss some measurements and interior walls. We’ll see how it goes, and in the meantime, I’m releasing you — and me — from this tortuous post.

bookcase 0119



4 thoughts on “In Decision

  1. I feel your pain, which is why packing for an extended trip can even involve just too many decisions. May the force of clear & competent without regrets decisions be with you now & forever.
    My first blog posting EVER!


  2. I love that your writing prompted Carol’s first post. I say leave the bookcase behind and take your best treasures from it to find a new place in your new home. Can you tell I’ve been on a de- clutter kick ?


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