From Bad to Worse

Back in February my basement looked like this.  I thought it was bad then but check it out now:


It has been overtaken with yard sale stuff, Christmas decorations, construction stuff and miscellaneous stuff that hasn’t/won’t make it upstairs.  Prudie has come to love these chairs (I think because they’re out of Henry’s reach) and I’m sure she’ll be sad when I finally get around to selling them!


I don’t know why I keep boxes.  My panini press?  Happily on the counter.  Never going back in its box.  That’s right, it’s time to purge and clean.



I’m sure you looked at this mess and thought “she just needs some shelves!”  Surprise, I do have shelves-I’m just not using them!



I should probably find out if this wall is structural.  If not, I think it should come down.  You wouldn’t think that an unfinished wall would get in the way, but it really bugs me.  It’s built enough to have to walk around but not built enough to actually count as a wall.



The mess hasn’t made it’s way around the above mentioned not-a-wall-wall but give it time.



I’ve recently become obsessed with Love It Or List It.  Have you seen it?  They take basements as bad as mine and make them into beautifully finished spaces.  Now I’m not looking for a guest room or TV space but I would love to, say, be able to see my floor!



The ceiling is only partially finished and I’ve heard that I shouldn’t finish it because it’s so much easier for plumbers and electricians to access what they need if it’s not covered in drywall.  So, do I rip out what’s there (as someone started to do before I bought the place) or leave it in anticipation of some (minor) plumbing and electrical work and only tear it down if necessary?  I think I want to tear it down.



I moved around a lot before I moved in with my parents (as an RA in college I moved every year) so I packed everything in these Rubbermaid containers.  They’ve kept my belongings safe but storing them like this isn’t working.  I have to move each box to get to the ones below it which disturbs the spiders which, in turn, disturbs me, so I just don’t do it.  I would like to build shelves on this wall (and rip out that clothes rod-why is that there??? WHY???) so I can access each row of bins without disturbing the ones above it.



This set of shelves would be perfect for paint…I don’t know why I didn’t do that to begin with!

The bottom line down here is that it’s a disaster.  Discarded projects go here to die (remember that “headboard” from the guest room?)



All I need to do it rip the fabric and foam off it it and I have two use able cork boards again.  But no, it’s sitting in my basement…

Now I’m not going to go all Hillary on this space-I don’t NEED it for a living area but I know that until it’s cleaned up (and given some bright white paint) this place will never stay clean.

I took some vacation days coming up that I plan to use to tackle my new back fence and my closet redo but I’m adding this basement to my winter to-do list.  Fingers crossed that I actually get it done!



Project Updates

Today I realized that I show you all a lot of stuff but don’t always show you if my projects stand the test of time or not.

For example, the last time I updated you in the roses was way back in June when they were all still alive.  Not the case now:



What’s funny is the one that’s doing the best is the one that has gotten the least amount of attention from me-no hose reaches to that bush so it has gotten the least amount of water.  So, it looks like this spring I’m replacing two rose bushes.  I think while I’m at it I’ll probably add a couple more to fill in the gaps.

Speaking of my neglectful gardening, check this out:



I planted this garden this spring and I thought it had all died so I just left it alone



Turns out, it wasn’t all dead!  I have beets onions and TWO carrots growing!

Remember this project?  Seven days into this project they looked like this.

Now, they look like this:



Not so good here but this one



is doing great!  I think in the next couple of weeks I’ll put it into a pot and let it grow all winter!

So, the moral of this lesson is I smother my plants with love.  It’s amazing my pets are still alive!


Craft Fail

A couple of weeks ago I made this.  I loved it.

Until this happened:



To be honest.  That happened about 6 hours after I hung it up.  My front door gets really hot and the hot glue melted.

The pieces sat here



since I found them on my doorstep.

I tried more hot glue, didn’t work.  I tried another craft glue, nope.  Today I figured I had nothing to lose so I did this:



Yep, I screwed it right into the wood.  I put in two, hopefully that works!



I did mark up the paint a little while drilling so I touched that up after I hung it up.



Then I figured I might as well



finally paint the back!


My Closet-The Plan

Remember yesterday’s post?

Sorry about that, I hope none of you had nightmares!

As I said yesterday, I’ve gone through tons of ideas for cleaning, organizing and finishing this space.  Here’s what I’ve come up with:

First, I need to pull the staples and pokey nails from the floor and then use wood filler to fill the gaps and nail holes.  Then I’m going to paint the floor.  I know.  I’ve been hearing about paints that are made for decks to seal them up and smooth out the rough patches.  I need that in here.

Second, the walls are going Bay Waves.  You may remember this color from my entry way, bathroom vanity, picture ledges and various small projects around the house.

Third, I’m buying this:


GÅSER Rug, high pile IKEA The high pile dampens sound and provides a soft surface to walk on.

It turns out that this will be perfectly sized for running down the closet in front of the hanging clothes-or basically, the places I’ll be walking with bare feet.

Fourth, I’m bringing in two of these:


By some miracle they’re the perfect height for sliding in underneath the existing shelf.  What I want to do is put them a couple of feet apart and then run a clothes rod between them.  Pinterest tells me this will work.  If Pinterest is wrong (which it has been before!) I’ll figure out another plan.  I really hope Pinterest is right!  I’d like to use one bookcase for shoes and the other for storage boxes and baskets for my belts and small purses.

Fifth, I want to stick a couple of these

GRUNDTAL Towel holder with 4 bars IKEA Swivels fully to the left or right.

up to hold my necklaces and bracelets.

Finally, I want to continue the existing shelf up both sides so I can stack my luggage and large bags on top.

I have an IKEA trip planned in the next couple of weeks where I hope to pick all this stuff up.  Hopefully once I have everything this will come together quickly-all my closet stuff is going to have to go into the guest room until this is done and I’d like to live in a mess for as short of a time as possible!


My Closet

I’m embarrassed to show you this.  I’m only doing it because the after is going to be so much better.



When I fell in love with old houses I thought I would only have a walk in closet in my dreams.

A few months ago one of the daughters of one of the previous owners stopped by and told me the story of my closet.  Originally the master bathroom was the closet for the bedroom but the man’s wife insisted that she needed something bigger so he built her this.  I’m sure she was just as grateful then as I am now!



I have a lot of clothes which is funny because 5 days a week I wear jeans and a polo shirt to work and when I’m not at work I’m happiest in comfy clothes.  I sorted through my closet and posted a bunch of stuff for sale on Facebook (yes, these pictures are post-clean up.)



In addition to clothes and shoes, I’m also storing my jewelry, scarves, luggage, belts and purses in this closet.





Yeah, I need some organizing systems







I have my dressy dressy clothes in that hanging bag on the end and the white storage bags have all my winter clothes (not for long though, I can feel winter coming!) and all my luggage stacked up in the corner.



I moved Henry’s chair in here several months ago but he has stopped using it.  And not just because I have junk piled on it.  It’ll get it cleaned up and then put into my next yard sale.

The floor is plywood and I’ve searched for ways to finish it.  Sure I could do carpet but I’m not looking to put a lot of money into this space.

Also, I hate my shoe situation.  You can see that I’ve employed some pool noodles to keep my tall boots up but for a while there Henry kept taking them out of the boots and chewing them up (not mad because at least it wasn’t shoes he was chewing!) so I’m in need of a couple more noodles.



I have a lot of shoes.  I wear 3 pairs: my Danskos, one pair of tennis shoes and one pair of flip flops.  Well, also my heels when I have to dress up (ha!) and my boots in the winter.  Bottom line though, I should get rid of some, I know.



The space in this closet is wasted.  After months of pricing organizing systems, hooks, shelves, carpet, and paint, I have a plan.  Check back tomorrow to see what it is 😉


The One in Which I Have to Make it Work

I started this project here and when we left off I had run out of fabric.  So I went to Wal-Mart for another roll but they were out and my mom didn’t have any black plastic so I had to make it work with what I had.

I thought and thought and dreaded having to take up sections of the cloth to cut it in half.  Then it occurred to me to undo some pins on the ends, fold up the middle section and cut out pieces and then flip the fabric back over and pin it down.



See?  You can’t even tell!



The seams aren’t perfect but there is a layer of fabric under where you see that edge coming up so I think I’ll be okay.  I also put down some stepping stones to try to minimize damage to the cloth.



I don’t know why this picture was blurry and the others weren’t, whoops!

My plan is to leave this as-is and if anything comes sprouting out through the fabric I’ll just layer some black plastic (hopefully amazon can help me out here!) over the top.  Maybe a bunch of times.  Pretty much as many times as it takes.

I’ll keep you updated!