Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Wednesday Vignette: You've got to break a few eggs to make an omelette

Demolition continues at our house.  At the moment, it seems never-ending.  We had an "issue" with the roof design for the new kitchen extension so it's literally back to the drawing board there.  In the meantime, I caved on removal of the indoor barbecue attached to the fireplace unit that divides our dining and living rooms.  I finally accepted that trying to reuse the barbecue area for storage or some other purpose would never be anything but odd.  So its demolition is underway.

Before demolition

Mid-way through demolition: All but the lower portion of the barbecue is already gone, creating more of an open concept space.  After endless debate, my husband and I've agreed to cover all the stone below the roof with Venetian plaster rather than trying to reface the scarred portions of the remaining fireplace in rock.

There's currently a hole in the ceiling as removal of the barbecue unit necessitated removing the part of the chimney below it


The good news is that, even after the upper portion of the chimney is reconstructed, there should be rock left for me to use in the garden.  Natural palos verde stone is no longer available in the area so this is a windfall of sorts.  One has to look for the positives...

My bromeliad bed has been torn to pieces by raccoons.  I'm looking forward to building a fortified bed featuring a lot more stone.


I'm also looking forward to being able to see my garden through the living room windows again.

View of the south side garden in mid-June


For more Wednesday Vignettes, visit Anna at Flutter & Hum.


All material © 2012-2019 by Kris Peterson for Late to the Garden Party

26 comments:

  1. What a great space divider! I can see why you would have wanted to keep it, but I also really like how much removing the barbecue lightened the space up. The Venetian plaster will do so even more. Hang in there, Kris - it will all be worth it in the end.
    Sorry to hear about your bromeliad bed. I still don't quite understand why the raccoons have to be so destructive - especially when there's no food involved. That's just mean!

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    1. I think "my" raccoons are obsessed with grubs, hence their proclivity for digging anywhere and everywhere. I'd though the grubs would disappear when the lawn did but it seems I was wrong there.

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  2. Good afternoon dear Kris,
    Wow, wow, wow what a work!!! But when the work is finished you will see that it was all worth being done. Take a deep breath, I am looking forward to see your house when it's finished.
    Have a wonderful day.
    marijke

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    1. I handled the first week and a half of our remodel relatively well I thought, Marijke, but I admit that it really wore me down this week. Once the crews start focusing on construction rather than destruction (demolition), I hope I'll be able to take it in stride again.

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  3. OMG Kris! I gasped as I scrolled down. Well, it has definitely opened up the space, it looks like you will eventually have even wider views of the garden from the windows. And the stone is beautiful. I hope you get to use lots of it in the garden.

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    1. My husband and I looked through the stone after the workers left today. I'm not going to steal any until the team reconstructs the chimney but my husband and I think there's going to be a LOT left. As I've dragged him to the rock store one too many times since we moved here, he wants to store all of what's left on-site on the assumption I'll want to use to somewhere sometime. He wasn't thrilled when I suggested we store what I can't immediately use on the renovated bromeliad bed at the bottom of our back slope, though.

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  4. Deep breaths... I love the idea for transforming parts of the former cooking-fire contraption into fortification against raccoons. Much more useful life for those stones!

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    1. The indoor bbq was a bizarre idea. I wonder how many times it was actually used? We never even considered using it for its intended purpose when we moved in 8+ years ago.

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  5. For the stones alone...it is worth doing! They are treasures; and yes, I love the more open, light and bright space.

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    1. The living room, bordered by floor to ceiling windows on 2 sides was always bright but the kitchen and dining room are going to seem even lighter with this change.

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  6. What major demolition. Living anywhere but California, I would be nervous having such a large hole in the ceiling. Not likely you'll get rain, and hopefully no raccoon visitors. I love watching the progress!

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    1. I HAVE been living in fear of finding a family of raccoons on the living room floor having a picnic one morning, Cindy!

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  7. Oh, Lord have mercy! I cannot imagine what you're going through, Kris. My nerves are fraying just looking at your photos. But like you said, one must break eggs... On the other hand, it is fascinating to get the blow by blow, and anticipating the final product, which ought to be fantastic.

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    1. I admit I like an orderly household and this is anything but! The final product also seems like a moving target, despite all those architectural drawings and room layouts we spent months on earlier.

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  8. I bet you will like the more open concept when it is all finished. Racoons have been in my garden lately. They are washing blackberries in one of the water features making a mess of things. UGH... I hope they don't start digging.

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    1. Raccoons do have a thing for water! We emptied our fountain to clean it and we're leaving it empty for the time being in the hope they'll go elsewhere instead of cavorting in our living room.

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  9. Definitely the right move - and all the stone for the garden... awesome bonus.

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    1. That was the bright light in the middle of the current mess! Somehow I never seem to have enough rocks.

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  10. Oh dear, quite a lot of broken eggs. But still it can't get much worse can it? Onwards and upwards.

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    1. Let's hope not, Chloris. I'll be happier when we get the city's approval to proceed with the new plan for the roof.

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  11. Wow!! I've missed a lot! I need to go back and catch up on everything that's happening! I'm back to blogging. :o)

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    1. I'm glad to hear it Tammy! I was afraid you'd abandoned blogging for good. Yes, I'm in remodel hell and it's affecting everything, including work in the garden and the perspective I bring to my blog.

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  12. Without that BBQ you have a much more open space. That will be great.

    My Mom & Dad's house in Orange had an indoor BBQ just like that. Same sort of room-divider type of thing. They used it as storage, too. Also covered with Palos Verde stone.

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    1. It seems it was a "thing" back in the 50s! I can't imagine why.

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    2. Some iconic house that was in Sunset Magazine back when everyone in California got Sunset Magazine had an indoor BBQ so it got copied?

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    3. Could be! My husband's theory is that it was a response to the heavy push on electric stoves in the early 50s, giving people a way to hold on to a gas option. Your theory sounds more plausible to me.

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