The Gift

Life is a gift

What we choose to do with it is up to us

Love is a gift

How we choose to accept and return it is up to us

God’s love is a particularly precious gift

Deserved or not, He gives it freely to all of us

I choose to accept His love and to spread His love to those around me

I pray that this quilt is a symbol of that love

Expressed in material form here but,

felt by all involved with the building of the latest


by Housatonic Habitat for Humanity

at 20 Crown Street in Danbury Connecticut

Ooohhh, Shiny!!!!

This photo was taken from the deck through the open sliding door.  The contractor had just finished and left so the floor finish is completely wet — but oh so shiny (and of course, oh so smelly).  I’m finishing some blog updates then going to head out for the day and let the smell abate a bit, hopefully.

When hubby returns home tonight, we will look at the floor — in the dark, yeah right — and decide if a fourth coat of finish is wanted.  Most likely that “look” will occur in the daylight tomorrow morning and while we are not looking forward to another day of chemical smells, we will take the carpenter’s expert opinion (also to be delivered tomorrow) and consider a 4th coat of poly finish.   But in the mean time, I’m putting on a wrap and heading outside to open the deck door and look from time to time.   The latest report — after an hour of drying time — still quite shiny!!!

Doesn’t the floor look wonderful?  And doesn’t that stupid column right in the middle of it look bad?  Unfortunately that column is holding up part of the house, so it will remain.  Though I haven’t said anything about it before, it has been stripped of its former outside layers of mirror, decorative wood, etc, that were applied in former remodels of this space.  Our carpenter is building sides for it of cherry that will match our cabinetry with a wide header and footer to decorate it a bit and that will match the legs that will eventually appear under the granite island.

And, just in case you (and I) have forgotten, I’m inserting an old photo that I called “old  kitchen be gone” — so we can see how far we’ve come . . .

And, in this photo, some of the old kitchen was actually already gone — the cabinets on either side of the sink had been taken down in preparation for installing the new bay window above the sink.  Wow, it’s really not the same space at all any more.


Another major step in the kitchen renovation.   Unfortunately this is one that has sent us running from the house on a daily basis due to the extremely unpleasant, headache-causing smells of floor finishes.

February 18th brought a new contractor to our home with the floor sander and stain.  Day 1 of floor finish work — red oak floors sanded and min-wax Golden Pecan stain applied.  In this photo, taken from the deck through the sliding door, it had just been finished and was not dry yet.

Days 2 and 3 (Saturday and Sunday) each brought a coat of poly finish.  Shinier floors, but smellier house.  We spent most of the weekend out and about when we could.

Kitchen progresses – Electricians are back

Progress on a daily basis on the kitchen!  Yeah!  Things are being finished and some long-awaited items are finally installed.

The Story of February 17th, in pictures . . . . . . . .

The pantry is completely installed — almost — two of the doors cracked after being finished, have been remade, and will be refinished and installed (note there are also now knobs on the doors) . . . .

The sub zero is “almost” invisible behind its cabinet doors.  A cherry panel will be installed in place of the black grate at the top . . . .

The lighting rail above the island — I would say it is my favorite thing because of the red hand blown pendants, but the whole kitchen is turning out to be a beautiful (favorite) thing . . . .

And don’t worry, we are not nuts – the stained glass lamp at the ceiling to the right will be at the correct height over the oak table — it’s just tied up out of the way of the construction right now.  And the light hanging down from the ceiling behind the rail is waiting on a replacement part – it will disappear into the ceiling as soon as it can.


The story of our granite counter tops is a long one, explained mostly in an earlier post.  So after not just a few problems and a death in the immediate contractor family, the day finally arrived that the granite finally arrived and was installed.  No easy job — and hats off to Ted and Alex (father and son) of Rye Marble for an excellent job in the fabricating and installation of a major feature of our new kitchen.

The Story — as told in photos.

The granite arrives by 4-wheel-drive pickup truck (it IS still winter in Connecticut) . . . .

The small counter was carried in and was an easy install . . . .

The island, not so much . . . . . . . “whew, that was heavy” . . . .

And the piece with the bay window section, tough install . . . .

A second counter piece was installed, the seam glued and sanded, and ooohhh . . . . . .

Walking wounded

Hubby has a very sore shoulder from shoveling the roof and a sore “backside” from a fall under our pickup truck as it was stuck on the driveway.  My shoulders don’t feel too good after all the ice chipping and shoveling today and my left hip is sore from my first fall of the day down in the street where we had to park the truck.  Walking (limping?) wounded here in Connecticut.   Winter is really taking its toll and now I’m grumpy too.

Second pantry – partially installed

Oh boy!  The second pantry is partially installed.  The pull out food cupboard is laying on the floor being shortened to fit under the support beam (will go on the right side) and the bookcase is still in the workshop (will go on the left, facing left).   Not only is it looking more like a kitchen as things get installed, but these humongous things have been in the middle of the room until today, so now the open space is back.   Just in time too — the granite guys are supposed to come on Monday to install the island and counter tops.  Can’t wait!!!  Of course, if not for the ice storm they would have been in here since Tuesday morning, but this is the winter of 2011.   As my hubby says, we’ll be talking about this one for a long, long time.   I think we have to get thru it first!


Time to get this lap quilt finished. It needs to have its dark purple binding added to it to make it ready to go.   The family for which it is to be a gift is about ready to occupy their new home in Danbury — built by staff and volunteers of Housatonic Habitat for Humanity.  The dedication ceremony is Sunday, Feb 13.