Porch & Basement Work

Ah, spring (kind of). The weather has been pretty wacky the last few weeks in St. Louis, and the cold, wet days have led to us delaying and rearranging several projects, including our concrete and basement work. We were lucky to have a few days last week that were warm and dry, which helped us knock out a few things this past weekend.

First we tackled building the interior walls on the first and second floors of the porch, and installing the windows on the first floor. We’re leaving the center window on the second floor of the porch out for now so that we can use that opening to get larger materials into the house if needed.

We also started coating the basement walls with waterproof paint so that we could begin framing the walls. With the basement measuring over 1,000 square feet, there is a LOT of painting and framing to be done. We decided to add a bedroom and kitchenette into the basement, so now we’ll have a bedroom, living area, kitchenette, full bathroom, laundry area, and storage in the basement (and Brendon’s Lego collection, if you recall).

It’s probably obvious by now that I’m not very handy, and more likely to be found at home updating our budget spreadsheets. When I showed up to help paint the basement, our friend reminded me of the time I painted a room in our current house and somehow got paint all over the carpet, even with a drop cloth on the floor. So, it’s probably not a surprise there were a few splatters and possibly a paint footprint (or two) when I was done. Otherwise, everything went pretty smoothly until I had to climb onto the fireplace support to paint the top portion of that wall. The clearance between the concrete and ceiling is just high enough for me to sit up there, and also a perfect spot for all my critter friends to hide. I stared straight ahead at the wall as I rolled paint onto it, trying not to look into the crevices where I am sure there are some animal carcasses, and did my best to ignore the insulation that fell down from the crawl space without provocation (my guess? groundhog).

Then, when I was so proud of myself for surviving that situation, I realized that my ladder wasn’t really in an ideal spot to get down from the seven-foot high perch without falling and shattering all the bones in my body (in addition to not being handy, I’m also pretty uncoordinated). I made it down unscathed somehow, but I learned a valuable lesson in ladder positioning … one that I will probably forget when it’s time to paint the other end of the basement.

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