Today the carpenter was at our house to fit a new front door. We have been a bit concerned at the lowness of the door handle on our old PVC front door for some time. Ever since the Little Chap has been tall enough to open it without our help actually! Also, we didn’t like how he was always so keen to run and open it – no doubt thinking he knew who was the other side of the door, due to its large glass panels and frequent visits from loved and trusted family members (sadly not the only types to grace our doorstep!) These same glass panels also showed anyone passing that we were on holiday as they could see the post piling up on the other side.
This is mostly about neither of us really wanting to have the bother of barricading ourselves into the house every time we go in or out of it for a minute or two – to empty the bins, take in a parcel or the groceries, get the car out of the garage etc! We don’t want the Little Chap able to run off and join the London riots without us knowing about it first either! So we’re combining the best of both worlds – safety for our son and less worry for us.
To be honest, I have never liked the PVC replacement front door, complete with vertical glass panels, any more than I like the replacement windows – they’re large, only have one opening window out of three, only open inwards on either a vertical tilt to a max of about 10 degrees (insufficient for cooling a room adequately in high summer) or, for the truly insane (if you’ve got kids anyway!), on a 180 degree horizontal (so Junior can just climb right out!).
I try not to have nightmares about the horrors that could happen to the Little Chap lest we forget to lock a window in the vertical tilt position, or when he discovers that if we don’t lock our bedroom window, he can actually climb out on to the flat roof below that is the ground floor extension (at least he won’t plummet to the patio)! But hey they’re easy to clean if that’s how you like to spend your time.
Therefore, a set of replacement, replacement windows; that have more, smaller opening panes, that all open, look prettier and lock securely is pretty high on my list of priorities following the travel costs, mortgage, food, heating, pension (ha!) and childcare costs. I may have a rather long wait though.
As you know, replacement windows can, even in this age of global consumerism, discounts and reduced staff overheads, still cost a second mortgage! And even if they don’t, the OH and I are not like the “yoof “of today, and we don’t believe in burning down double glazing depots to nick some desirable gear for ourselves because we read about it on Twitter! Instead, we’ll do the old fashioned thing and wait until we can afford to do it properly. So, this wish of mine could well be a long way off.
However, when the in-laws recently extended their porch, resulting in the need for a new external front door, we decided to reclaim their old one! So environmentally friendly (looking smug).
So I am now the proud owner of a lovely solid wood front door, that shuts with a soft, but satisfying, solid thud, and not a pretentious click. It has a seven lever mortice lock, a chain, a spy hole and a self-closing catch, which is now out of the Little Chap’s reach (Note to self/OH/& all babysitting grannies: NEVER leave home without keys!).
There are a few reasons why this is such a huge relief:-
- When Postie knocks with a delivery (usually something I need to receive urgently), I no longer have to find my keys so I can open the door to sign for whatever he wishes to bestow upon me at 7am! I may still be otherwised engaged when said enthusiastic Postie rings on the doorbell – most likely changing a real stinker of a nappy that can’t be rushed, requires half a ton of baby wipes and several nappy bags! Oh and some form of objection to my helpfulness from the Little Chap to put an end to any “let’s just slap on this nappy and open the door shall we?” ideas I might have.
- There will be no more of the Little Chap napping or trying to get to sleep after a hard day running rings around me, while I spot the lunchtime courier or takeaway dinner delivery boy heading boldly for the doorbell. A scene which can only result in a minute of my frantic rushing about, trying to remember where I last had my keys, to actually find them (usually in some forever invisible location at the bottom of my handbag) and then use them to open the door to said courier/delivery boy in only the time it takes them to walk up the drive!
- I will no longer be able to walk out of the house and leave it unlocked. Though, amazingly I have not yet actually done this since we moved in three years ago, despite some really rather full-on episodes of Mummy Brain Syndrome (which I really think should be called “Mummy Has No Brain It Got Sucked Right Out of Her Along With The Breast Milk”, don’t you!?). As a result of which, I consider myself to be fairly stable of mind and firm of wit, despite the many suggestions (mostly from OH!) to the contrary.
BUT there is now huge scope for me to lock myself out! More than ever before (watch this space!)… cue new Mummy necklace (keys around string on neck!) :-p
So, here is our carpenter, duly yanking out the old and banging in the new, despite the steadily pouring rain (!). What struck me most about today though, was how readily the Little Chap leapt up from breakfast to see how he could help, courtesy of his little Bob The Builder toolkit. We duly had to put down his rug as a groundsheet, watch him measure the frame, drill and saw and hammer and screw and chisel his way to showing off his own brand new door into our hallway, through which he was studiously taking in all that the carpenter was doing. I swear I could almost see his work with my own eyes, so realistic was the Little Chap’s description of it!
Who says kids don’t need positive role models?!
Mayfair Mum x
© Mayfair Mum, 2011
Keys on chain around neck or in deep trews pockets v nec. only locked myself out once – luckily left window open and posted my small daughter through who obligingly opened said door having got a chair to open the latch!!
Thx for comment. You must read Alfie Gets in First by Shirley Hughes – a similar story! LOL