Thursday, October 28, 2010

More renovations, you say?

Oh happy day, more renovations are afoot in the Brennan household. We’re finally redoing the downstairs bathroom.


Oh, the fun you can have in PowerPoint while your husband watches the World Series…this is the layout of the bathroom as it currently stands.

We’re replacing a five-foot tub with a four-foot shower.


This shower, specifically. If you zoom in on the built-in seat, you might notice a butt print in the dust. That would be my butt print. Hey: truth in advertising – I wanted to make sure that my mom would be comfy using it, right? Oh, speaking of my mom, Mom, not to worry, there will be an industrial-strength grab bar in here.

Naturally, when you change one thing, you end up changing just about every other thing. This shower is a good six inches wider than the existing tub. That means we have to move the toilet over a few inches. Whoops, that will bump up against the four foot long vanity we have. Fortunately, I loathe the vanity, and have wanted to have at it with a crowbar and sledgehammer for some time now.

Which brings us to the new vanity. We’re going with a three foot wide one, and it will look similar to the one upstairs in our bathroom – at least, in terms of the door style, handles, and finish.

existing vanity

Except it will have a big swing door on the left, and two drawers on the right. You get the idea. (The one above is a foot wider than what we’re getting for the guest bathroom.) Oh: granite counter top in your basic innocuous beige.

The floor – currently white hexagonal tiles – will almost certainly be replaced by the same bamboo we have upstairs in our bathroom. And the oak-veneer-over-particle-board medicine cabinet will go far, far, away, to be replaced by a medicine cabinet in the same finish as the vanity.

We still need to figure out the lighting, since we’re currently rocking some vintage 70’s stuff that needs to join the medicine cabinet in Mistakes Were Made land. Just because I love orange doesn’t mean that everything from the 70’s was a good idea, OK?

Are you ready for pretty pictures now? Because I sure am.

OK, first, a sad picture. Animal lovers, brace yourselves.


This is the back of a pickup truck, Connecticut plates, headed south on 91. That’s a bear head in the center, and maybe three or four sets of elk antlers to the right.  A big pile of mayhem.

I don’t have a problem with hunting.

I do have a problem with trophy hunting.

I’m thinking this is the upshot of trophy hunting. I’d love to be wrong about this.

Let’s look at some trees now. Today, we’re going to celebrate oak trees, the under-appreciated altos in the chorus of fall foliage.


This is New Hampshire, as seen from the coop parking lot. That whole hillside burned many decades ago, and there’s a largely even-aged stand that’s come up as a result. Or so I learned in grad school. Let’s visit some individual oaks next.


Update: Kevin would like me to point out that this picture – and the ones that follow – were taken at the Canal Street School, in Brattleboro, the site of the evening child care program that he and our buddy Patrick founded.





Apropos of nothing, have you ever wondered what a house built out of cobblestone would look like?



Now you know.

OK, now let’s go home. Yep: this is on my running route.



Hey, Mom, you know that Vermont Shepherd cheese you love so much? This field is where those sheep graze all summer.


  1. I want to more about the cobblestone!!!!

  2. It's the 1860 Winslow Ward House, in Brattleboro. It's Greek Revival in design, but built of water-washed cobblestones. It is apparently the "eastern-most example of cobblestone work in the nation".

    It was bought and renovated by the local community housing trust to be an SRO - single-room occupancy - place - it's got something like 8 or 9 apartments in it.

  3. Tons of cobblestone houses where I grew up. Very pretty.

    - KAC