Sunday, April 4, 2010

another post to brighten your corner......wherever that may be.

As you may or may not know by now, we are still on our Big Fat Road Trip. One of the events I have been looking forward to the most is another Brighten A Corner (BAC) project. You may remember them from this previous post.

Before we even left Idaho, Robin and Stephanie (BAC Wonder Women) announced their next BAC project: remodeling a modular home to make it wheel chair friendly for a man diagnosed with ALS - or Lou Gehrig's disease. (You also may remember from HERE that my mom died from ALS several years ago.) Then the dates for this *extreme home makeover* were given - March 24-29. I knew we would be in town then so I signed us up for whatever was needed.

Robin contacted me a few days before the project was to begin. She asked if we would take on an entire room - the craft/sewing room of the wife of this family. This woman is a quilter, and also the main caregiver. I was told that her style and her taste in decorating was similar to my own. We were given a $500 budget and the daunting task of creating a space for this loving wife that would be her sanctuary - a retreat where she could go and not live with The Disease, if even a for few minutes of every day. It was the only room that didn't get the doorway widened to accomodate a wheel chair. Her room. Her place to go where she could recharge her batteries and be inspired. 
We knew what ALS did to the caregiver. This was the perfect room for us to work in. We created this room in honor of Bill, my own mother's husband/caregiver who gave up sailing for over a year and who almost lost himself while watching her slip away.... 

I won't even go into all the little miracles (are there even little miracles???) that happened along the way. How the dollars were stretched to meet our ever expanding wish list - how friends of ours, and complete strangers to this struggling family, stepped forward to offer cash, furniture, supplies and support to create a safe haven for a family in need.

The following pictures tell the story - the befores and afters.

The crews of ordinary people and extraordinary craftsmen (climbing all over each other sharing tools and space) who made this happen.

The miracle that took place in five days.

the outside before

The outside after.
New entry, new ramps, all new windows.

living room before - dated blue sculptured carpet throughout
more of the livingroom before.......
The living room after - brand spankin' new wood floors - throughout the entire home.
my dear friend Judi caught wind of this project and asked if we could use an old pine TV armoire - uh, um....perfect fit. One of many surprises blessings.

kitchen before

more kitchen before.
...and more.

kitchen explanation neccessary.
lovely new island and granite countertops....perfectly wheelchair friendly.

old dining room - moved to....
the new built ins off the kitchen. (a new entry was created where the old dining room was)
almost forgot to tell you this: the entire house was sheetrocked over that dated old modular home paneling.
a new, handicap accessible bathroom was created where the old dining room had been - complete with roll-in shower.
lovely tile work. all tile donated. beautifully done.

master bedroom befores
master bath before.


master bedroom after.
new master closets and built ins.
cozy new master bedroom.
unbelievably beautiful tile work in the master bath.
seriously. and again, all donated.

the following pictures are the room we were given to transform.....
she, like all serious quilters, LOVED her fabrics....
...and she had a lot.

I picked out one fabric from her collection as the inspiration for the colors....we chose a calming and peaceful sage-y green.
We designed floor to ceiling shelves for all that fabric.
with a work space roomy enough for any quilting project....we pulled that cute chandelier from the old dining room before it ended up in the trash!
framed artwork donated by my friend Susan Branch....we painted the closet and left it doorless so she could see all her supplies at a glance - all we did was give it a fresh coat of paint.
all her furniture (thread caddy, chair, etc) was painted a cottage white.
at one point I asked a gal if she would organize her threads....she color coded them all.
former master dresser found a new home under a couple of shelves Dennis whipped up out of left over crown moulding.
more donated scrapbooking supplies and prints from Susan Branch. (thank you Judy!)
curtains and mini-blindswere re-purposed from the old master bedroom.
see that new flat screen television????
a friend (who wishes to remain anonymous) surprised us with the cash for that after she found out we wanted to gift one to the room. this quilter had a huge monster of a tv that would have eatten up waaaaay too much space - and it was obvious to us (when we did our initial walk through) that she enjoyed watching her shows as she sewed.
peg board (and other trim lumber)donated by Cherry Cabinets - we just stopped in to say hi and left with a full truck!
here is the inspiration fabric I told you about - I asked my old friend, Merle, who had done sewing on many previous BAC projects, if she could make a cushion from it for the old captain's chair I was painting - isn't it sweet? It absolutely pulled the entire space together.

the following are pictures of how the magic happened, as well as some of the wonderful volunteers who made it all happen......

tools everywhere.
some of the many people who painted....
walls came down....
walls for new bathroom went up....
working Dennis....
Cali & Cathy - the amazing tiling crew....
this guy, Drew spent days under the house redoing plumbing....
flooring going down...
Sherry folding, folding, folding. Sherry is also a quilter so I asked her to arrange these fabrics the way SHE would want them to be.
Debbie and Jen....foldng, folding, folding.
our old friends PeanutButter and Bridget
sweet Summer and her husband Matt....painting, painting, painting.
another cheerful painter....the painting seemed to go on forever!

finally, here are our fearless leaders....

they inspire me.
I hope they inspire you.

thanks for stopping by......

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