If you listened to me move about the house recently, you would hear something like this, “Waddle, waddle, grunt, sigh.” These last weeks of pregnancy have not been my most glamorous nor my most productive. I’ve had difficulty planning meals for the past month, because that meat I just defrosted might go bad if I end up in labor by the afternoon. I am not sleeping at night and spend my afternoons trying to nap. I wander about the house tidying my belongings and wondering if today is my last day to vacuum before the baby arrives.
Clearly I need something to occupy my mind and my time rather than pondering if this set of Braxton-Hicks contractions is the real thing. Yet, I couldn’t begin a truly important or critical project because a baby might interrupt it at any moment.
Enter the peacock.
We own a ginormous home. Living in a large, old home is romantic, until you pay your first heating bill. Yikes! To reduce our heat expenditures, each autumn we close half of our house with pepto-bismol pink insulation sheets. Those rooms are gloomy, cold and unused during the winter months, but in return, we can afford to keep the rooms in which we dwell comfortable. The insulated doorways are rather ugly, and the pink foam appears at a greater disadvantage when paired with mustard yellow walls.
We intend to repaint the walls one day after the heating system is repaired, the electrical wires updated, the dry wall hung, and so on. Until that day, we decided to settle on hiding the insulation. So, we unrolled a large sheet of cheap white paper and began painting. It’s my painted doorway.
Perhaps the peacock is a little extravagant, but any decoration is nicer than medicinal pink insulation. Conceiving and painting the peacock entertained me for a couple of weeks. Now I’m seeking a new task, and hoping that it’s interrupted soon by my second son.
Recently, my husband has been planning his own baby project. In the weeks following our first son’s arrival, he used his paternity leave to install a shower in our downstairs bathroom. For this baby, he will replace our oil boiler with a natural gas boiler.
The advantages of a natural gas boiler are numerous. It emits fewer carbon gases than oil, making it a little more eco-friendly. Natural gas arrives at our house by pipes – not by the tanker truck. This means that we don’t have to check the level of fuel all winter nor do we need to monitor oil prices in order to determine the best time to buy. But perhaps the greatest advantage to natural gas is it’s low price tag. We have estimated that we will save hundreds of dollars during the winter months running natural gas.
I might not have to bake to stay warm this winter!