Closing one door, opening another

Our story so far: Consumed with all things related to HVAC, plumbing and electrical, we were deep into the mechanicals phase of renovating the 126-year-old Methodist church we hoped to turn into our dream home.

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Chapter 19

Few people go through life without hearing the old maxim, “When God closes a door, he always opens a window.” It’s the line a friend uses to impart hope in the face of loss, which appears on the scene in every life occasionally.

front entry on the outs
Entry on the outs

This was the case in the old Methodist church, too, literally if not metaphorically. We were going to seal off one of the doorways. Instead of opening a window, though, we were creating a new doorway.

The doorway on the outs was the side entry to the main floor. While we were keeping the exterior entrance which opened to the basement, the three steps up into the main floor were going to become part of our master bedroom which allowed us to incorporate another window into the boudoir. Tyler would have to weave in a new oak floor over the steps, but we salvaged flooring from the other side of the room where we were installing the master shower. When he poked around into the stairway above the departing entrance, he discovered where the stair stringer was cracked, which explained why that stairway was uneven. It would have to be replaced in the reconstruction process.

coat hooks
Can you see the screw holes from the coat hooks? They look like little faces.

Just inside that entrance, one could see a peculiar row of nail holes in the beadboard. It didn’t take much imagination to realize those holes were for coat hooks, where generations of Sunday School kids probably hung their jackets. I hoped to keep that beadboard and add more along the new wall where the door was removed; I weighed whether to use of wood putty in the holes or keep that little tribute to what the room used to be.

back entry in outline
Imagine a doorway here, one that will someday lead to Tyler’s mancave.

Meanwhile, we were going to build a door in the north wall of the church to the garage in an area Tyler called the mudroom. But since it was February, and the garage wasn’t going to be built for months, this door would be just a little spray paint and imagination for a while.

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Tomorrow: As in our renovation project, February brought closing and opening doors in real life, too. Read about it here.

2 thoughts on “Closing one door, opening another

  1. […] Our story so far: As reality has caught up with this blog about converting a 126-year-old Methodist church into our home, I’ve run across a few odds and ends that occurred after I wrote about the subject initially. That’s how it goes with a real-time memoir. Sometimes stuff happens after publication. So this week, I’m sharing a few little stories that will ultimately be integrated into the relevant location in the memoir. Think of this as the time in the novel—especially a mystery novel—when you page back to reread a few passages to remind yourself about what’s going on. Here’s an update for Chapter 19. […]


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