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You Never Know What You'll Find

When we purchased our farm, it was with eyes wide open, confident that not only did the house need extensive remodeling, but that we would be the ones putting that sweet, sweet sweat equity into our forever home.

Our current project is the original bathroom - we already added the new master bathroom, and are thrilled with how that turned out. Here's the original hot mess that we're taking on now:

The original bathroom was peel and stick linoleum, a broken toilet, quarter-inch paneling and a drop ceiling. Mold was accumulating on the walls, to say nothing of the state of the shower/tub combo. Needless to say, Demo Day was a very exciting day!

We were told the original edifice was built in 1920, although, we've slowly learned in the 10 months we've owned the joint, that no one really seemed to have much concrete knowledge about the property. Trial and error, accidental discovery, and pure, dumb luck are the only things that have kept us from caving in an "abandoned" well pit, driving semi-trucks on our drainage field, and don't even get me started on the wiring "fixes" we've found!

Every demo has been a double-edged sword of discovery and horror. Today was no different.

To paraphrase our nightly dinner conversation we have with our four year old, there was good news and there was bad news.

The Good News? There's shiplap. Lots and lots of shiplap. Amazing 20-24 inch solid wood planks. These were also decorated (insulated?) with newspapers from 1879!

The newspaper covering is called "Youth's Instructor" and multiple issues are pasted to the shiplap:

The curious part in this is that this newspaper is 41 years older than the house is, supposedly. Did they have a pile of these old Adventist publications just lying around? Are they reproductions? Is the house much older than we'd been lead to believe? So many questions, and I'm not sure we'll ever find the answers.

The Bad News you ask, anxiously? Well, it's not actually "bad" bad, but, oh, Mama, it could've been.

Those are paper wasp nests and the shovel, for scale. Three of those suckers - all dormant. These match the three dormant ones up in the attic, but I digress. Can you even imagine the buzzing that must've driven some previous owners crazy?! HORRIFYING to imagine.

I'll be posting updates as we go through the stages of this particular part of the remodel. One thing is for sure, you never know what you'll find when you get behind a layer of particle board, plaster, lathe, and shiplap!

 

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