Replying to comments is fun.
Margaret said she'd like to see the tub. Well. It's packed away in storage, but if you google Kohler cast iron Mendota 60 x 32, you'll see the tub.
Anonymous had a question: "With all your home renovations of older homes, have you ever experienced anything 'paranormal'? I guess if you don't believe in it, it's a moot point. I've talked with flippers and people that renovate older homes who didn't believe...until things happened they couldn't explain. I guess we're all looking for that rational thought."
It is an interesting question. I am of the opinion that there are things that I don't understand. I'm also completely comfortable accepting that I don't understand. I have no curiosity to be poking around in the paranormal.
That being said, there are three instances in my life that stand out to me. The first time I was walking out of Gunston Hall in Virginia, which was the home of George Mason, who was one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. I love historical homes. I did the home tour. I headed out the back to see the gardens, and there was the strangest feeling: I just felt very strongly that I knew this place. I felt like I belonged. I actually felt dizzy.
It was shocking, and...
...that was it. I continued on my merry way wondering what that was all about. (Years later, I was talking to an old man who'd spent his life in the Merchant Marines and he had gone vacation and did a tour of Dodge City, Kansas, and described suddenly feeling as if he knew the place, as if he belonged there. I recognized the feeling he was trying to describe right away.)
The next time, was early morning, and it was at the Chippewa Nature Center. By that time I was the mother of three children. I was taking one of them to Nature Camp. They had to be dropped off early in the morning, and I had to drive down a dirt road to the camper drop off. You went through an area that had an old log cabin school house that had been dismantled, the logs numbered, and brought back and reassembled at the CNC. As I came upon this building, approaching it from the end, I caught a glimpse of a woman in the window. The glass was the old very wavy distorting sort of glass, but as I glanced over, I saw a woman in the window. The nature center proper was not yet open and wouldn't be for another couple of hours, so there were no volunteers. The buildings would have been locked. But I caught that glimpse of a woman, and the only thing that I remember plainly was that she wore her hair up, and her blouse had a high collar. I hit the brakes in surprise and she just wasn't there when I looked again.
The final thing happened in my own house, the house in the header.
I was getting ready for work. I worked third shift in a group setting for developmentally disabled adults. My work partner watched a ghost hunter show. I will admit that those things bother me because I do believe that there are things I don't understand, and I would like to keep it that way. But I'd be folding laundry and she'd be watching her show, and I'd always try to logic through what was happening.
On one very dumb episode, a woman hired ghost hunters. She felt uneasy in her house. She didn't know why. The ghost hunters came in, went to a local library, and found a newspaper clipping that told the story of a death in her house. Triumphantly, they took that to her. The death happened in the room she claimed she felt uneasy in, and she exclaimed. 'I knew it! I could feel it.'
So I was brushing my teeth and walking between the bathroom and the front of the foyer to the french doors where Tim sat on the couch as I got ready for work. I was telling him how stupid the show was. "It proved nothing!" I said. "We know of at least four deaths in this house, so based on that, OUR house is haunted." As soon as I uttered the words there was a thud. Standing in the foyer, I felt that thud in my feet.
Tim leaped of the couch, blew by me and headed up stairs saying "What was that?"
I said, "Where are you going?"
He said, "Upstairs to see what that was."
I said, "But it came from the basement," and I stood there holding my toothbrush quite sure that I was not going to the basement. I felt like the Cowardly Lion in the Wizard of Oz, wringing my tail and repeating 'I do believe in spooks, I do, I do, I DO.'
The source of the noise was not discovered. Our house is a friendly place, and no one has ever claimed to feel uncomfortable in it. including me. Well. Once one of William's toys started by itself and shut off when I walked into the living room. It was not a wind up toy, it was battery operated. It was in the middle of the livingroom rug and William was still sound asleep on the couch having his afternoon nap.
11 years later, I can tell you one thing that I understand the least about that thud. Tim does not remember it. We talked about it, because I can assure you that it absolutely did happen, and I could not believe that he didn't remember it. All I can tell you is that he is a very practical man. If he doesn't understand something that he feels uncomfortable with, he tucks it away and never thinks on it again. A preacher's kid, he does not care to look through that mirror darkly.