Thursday, June 28, 2012

From Here to Almost Home

Work has come to a standstill at our house. The insurance company gave us the old 'check's in the mail' story...but it wasn't. They've decided to disagree with our third party consultant who says the work on our house is 85% complete. They believe it is not 85% complete and stopped sending money. With no money, we can't pay the crews. Or buy the windows. Or pay for the siding. Or the insulation.

The Big Guy does battle everyday with the insurance company. He copies and forwards bids. He sends receipts. He sends lists of code violations. He sends letters and affidavits. He calls. He e-mails. It is exhausting just watching him fight this battle. Then he goes to battle with vendors and subcontractors. There are doors that are ordered but don't come in. There are bids that never show up. Sometimes it feels like a never ending nightmare.

With no work happening and no money to work with yet, I see our big moving day looming ever farther on the horizon. It is depressing. So, I decided instead of wallowing in our lack of progress it was time to take a look back on just how much progress we've made.

Let's look at the kitchen. This is what we saw the night of the fire.
I's just a mess. Here is what I see when I look at this photo. I see the blender, melted and full of black water from the fire fight. I see pots and pans pulled from under cabinets with charred edges. I see a can of apple pie filling, destined earlier that night to be dessert, with bulging ends ready to explode. I see plywood over the broken windows. I see the trim melted off the counter. I see the warped, melted drawers. I see the plastic cups melted into bizarre shapes. I see my microwave and part of my wall sitting in the floor. I see insulation from the ceiling on everything. It was completely surreal. What you can't see in the photo is that we were standing in a foot of soppy, black insulation and drywall littered with busted dishes and window glass.
The baker's rack.
This was our baker's rack. It was red and white. It was covered with lush, green plants. Ivy trailed down the sides and through the bars. There were 3 plastic pots on this rack. You can't see them because they melted away, but you can see the dirt there on the bottom. Some of the charred ivy plants were hanging out the back window when the firefighters left. The retro-style radio is melted into a twisted glob.
Stove and slow cooker.
This is where the fire started. You can see the remains of the slow cooker, the stupid crock sitting on the stove top. The firefighters pulled the microwave and range hood from the wall. The cabinet there is what the insurance company calls 'burnt out of sight'. The fire here burned through the ceiling into the attic.
Kitchen, bay window and ceiling.
Here we are in the demolition phase. And there is our contractor, probably wondering what he had gotten himself into. The appliances have been hauled out. The cabinets and all of their contents are in the dumpster. At this point, they had not touched the ceiling. The fire did all that.

The sheet rock is out and the fixtures are gone. It was easier for me to see at this point because I could no longer see our 'things'.
New kitchen ceiling. 
Here we are with the ceiling all framed in.

And here we are with the framing finished. The roof is complete now so there is no more water in the floor. We actually now have plumbing, HVAC, and electricity here to.

So, there is the progress of one room. It, like the rest of the house is 85% complete. As soon as we get a check from the insurance company we can add insulation and sheet rock and start cabinets and flooring. The check is on the way. I would insert a joke here but I'm just too tired.

We've come a long way. We are at the far end of the journey. It won't be long now until I am standing at my new island baking cookies with the kids. 

Say it with me: "There is no place like home. (click) There is no place like home. (click) There is no place like home. (click)"

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