Sunday, July 22

productive weekend

We have been wanting to work on our apartment for awhile, but I've been busy and then Christopher's been busy. This weekend neither of us were occupied, so we set ourselves on a few projects and plugged through.

The first project, which we didn't expect to take so much time and energy, was that we got a new fridge. My cousin, an architect, is working on a gut renovation of an apartment in Chelsea. All of the appliances were getting dumped, and she asked if we wanted the fairly new Fisher & Paykel stainless fridge. yes! We would love to replace all of our appliances but just can't afford to.

Of course, transporting a large fridge from the 5th floor of a building in Manhattan to the 6th floor of a building in Brooklyn isn't so simple. Through my cousin, who was taking some things for herself, we hired 2 Mexican men to carry the appliances down. This was just a horrible idea for every one and thing involved. The men weren't strong enough and ended up dragging the appliances down the stairs. My cousin's stove was totally stratched up and our fridge ended up completely dented by the time it got to the sidewalk, where my father and I loaded it into the back of a rented trailer. From there, my dad drove to Brooklyn and met Christopher (while I went to work). They were unable to get the fridge up the few stairs outside our building (Christopher's forearms got pretty bruised in the process) and so they had to bring it around to the rear of the building and through the basement. Our elevator is small and Christopher backed into it with the fridge and handtruck, fililng the elevator and leaving him pinned between the fridge and the wall and making it very difficult to exit.
After all of that, we though it'd be fairly simple to install, except that the new fridge was 3 inches wider than our old one. I didn't think this would be a problem. All I thought we needed to do was push our wall cabinets over to the far wall and cut off the end of the counter. (The counter had a 3" lip on the right side.) For several hours yesterday we unbolted the cabinets and pushed them to the left and screwed them together and bolted them back to the wall, but we only seemed to gain about 1/2" . What I hadn't anticipated was that the wall behind the fridge wasn't vertical and so there wasn't as much space as we thought. It wasn't pretty. In the end I realized we had to remove a 15" cabinet and replace it with a 12" one, which we have to order. Amazingly, everything in that cabinet easilly fit into the base cabinet below it (clearly we have too much room!) . That all happened today and it was fairly quick and painless. And now we have a beautiful new fridge. The space inside is so much more efficient than our old one; it feels so empty!! Another huge bonus is that this fridge is fairly shalllow. Our old one stuck out a few more inches and blocked the doorway a little. You may have thought that this was enough work for one weekend, but there was more! Christopher (rightfully) has decided to get his office in shape before the fall. As he's going away for 3 1/2 weeks in August, this is his last chance. So, when he wasn't listening to me curse about the cabinets, he was patching and sanding and painting the last bit of the office.

I don't think I've posted photos of our office before. It's an L-shaped room, with a window at one end. Christopher has one side (the part with the window) for his office, and my studio is set up in the darker area of the room. Since I barely use my part it's become a bit of a dumping ground for random boxes and things we don't know what to do with. And since Christopher has been using his desk since we moved in, his area has never really gotten organized or completed. We painted most of the room back in January and put in some bookshelves but it never got finished. Here is Christopher in the office in January: Here it was last week: And here it is now: It still needs some shelves and general organizational strategies, but I think it's on its way!

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