Christmas Project Breakthrough

Christmas Project Breakthrough    

I feel as though I won the Christmas Lottery!  This year, the holiday project was at our house instead of at our daughter’s house.  When we first looked at this house, we found it a bit quirky.  Fortunately for us, the quirky characteristics caused many potential buyers pass on it, leaving it for the more adventurous.

We have not yet figured out what the original intent was for the add-on room, our project room.  We believe the room was added on about 25 to 30 years ago, based on materials used.  The do-it-yourself person who built the room did not have the qualifications to do a really good construction job, especially with the electrical system.  The room has seven good quality, floor to ceiling windows, all dual glazed, but none of them open for ventilation.  The exterior door, off the driveway, is the only access into the room; fortunately there is a screen door for fresh air.  This room was not good for not much more than a sunroom or storage, which is how we have used it.

However, we always intended it to be a guest room, knowing we would need to upgrade many aspects of it.  Most important was constructing direct access to the rest of the house from the room, without having to go outside walk down the driveway and enter the house through the back door.  Having an accessiblebathroom without having to go outside was primary.

The plan was to cut a door through a wall in the second bedroom aka my husband’s office.  We could see there had been a window in that wall prior to building the add- on room; therefore, there was an existing header in the wall.  That wall was the logical place for a door.  The window was simply walled over from the inside and left exposed on the guest room side, though disguised by a make-shift closet.  

The biggest problem was cutting through 1938 stucco and about an inch of concrete.  I was grateful to have a much younger person doing the cutting: our gallant son who was willing to do the very, very dirty work.  Once the cuts were made and the wall removed, we all finally could imagine the finished project.

Sadly, there is much left to do before I can jump in and share with you all the fun decorating plans I have; but be patient, it will all be recorded here for you in the coming weeks, and months.

There is a need for only one step down from my husband’s office into the newly created guest quarters.  After some discussion, we agreed that making the step into a full platform would serve best.  First, my husband would not have to level the pebble path that ran under the window before the room was added, and I would not have to deal with an awkward step into the room.

We purchased an old, entry door from Pasadena Salvage, as the door that would offer the necessary privacy for our guests.  I opted for a Speakeasy door to add to the interest and maintain the quirky quality of the house.  This door will slide on barn sliders for access to the rest of the house.  Stepping down from my husband’s office into the room and onto the platform will offer very secure footing.

Currently, my husband is working on the electrical system in the room; there will be plenty of outlets, USB ports, and lighting options.  Having the platform, will afford an outlet or USB port in the riser, wires running under the step, and no encroachment on the very limited wall space, since two sides of the room are all windows.   

Progress beyond the electrical will be fun to share; I am expecting the door hanging to be a whole new story—stay tuned.