Sunday, December 9, 2007

Worn spots on the wood floor in the front room

After rubbing with stain! Some spots are a little darker than I would have liked but there are plenty of naturally dark spots on the rest of the floor.
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Sunday, September 2, 2007

Vacation Rentals

Goin 2 Travel is a web site listing vacation rentals all over the world.  I looked at properties in AZ & Cabo.  There are some sweet condos & individual homes available for rent.  If you aren't into the "hotel" way of life (which I am) this would be a great way to travel and feel like you didn't leave home behind. 

I imagine that Goin 2 Travel be a great place to check during the busy seasons where ever you are traveling too.  Not everyone thinks to check for room or home rentals while planning their big trips.

 Goin 2 Travel would also be great for planning group travel.  There are any number of bedrooms you need, want to plan a distant family reunion? Exotic wedding?  If you look at enough properties you can find one in your combined budget, even have your own private pool.  Plus the bonus of a full kitchen & all the amenities of home!

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Monday, July 23, 2007

Window Project

I posted a bit about the project here Busy Weekend. So I won't go into it in full here, but the Living room window is in & looks great!

I never dreamed that a simple window project could have us tearing 10 feet of siding off, but it did. So... gotta love living in a 140 year old house!

Semi before (I forgot to take a picture of the old wall after all the siding came off)

I should have emailed Easy Gard to sponsor the post, but alas I didn't! It was just the cheaper choice at our home improvement store. I suppose I could have blurred the labels, but I haven't installed the good photo editing software on the computer yet.*** Best part was we only used about 20 feet of the 150+ foot roll so now we have lots of leftovers for the next siding removal project (South Turret before winter).

***I am so far behind in photo editing I should do this we have had the new computer since February!

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Bath revisted

Since I am still perusing the web for ideas on what to do with my bathroom...

I was just introduced to Taps4less.  Since it is a UK site, if you live in the Mainland UK you get the bonus of free delivery.  Worth checking out!  I'm terrible with my pounds to dollars conversions, so I had to find a conversion calculator...  I am certain that it would be cost prohibitive to have anything shipped to the USA, but I can look right!

My hubby would love this baby a Taps4less Steam massage shower enclosure.  I suppose it is possible, since bathrooms don't really count in "restoration" processes.  But I'm not convinced we'd get the full 1400 pounds (=$2844.00) back out of it in equity.

Now this is more my speed, the Taps4less Bath shower mixer on a newly restored claw foot tub.  That's what I'm talking about.  Of course that would be almost too Victorian!  It isn't like we are restoring the house to it's original Victoria Era Splendor, we aren't convinced it had any.  Best we have been able to find out is that the "wealthy" people who lived here & added the second turret declared bankruptcy.   We have not been able to locate a single picture of our house.  Of course the town historian had just begun digging through the piles left by her predecessor, maybe she has been able to locate something.   We'll have to plan a trip to the museum to check.

 My FIL can remember working at a dinner party here when he was young. It was converted to apartments in the 1940's or 50's.  The house has a history, I'm sure it is interesting it's just not documented in any easy to find fashion!

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Thursday, May 17, 2007

Garden edging

This past week was a productive one for the outside of the Money Pit at least!

We smoothed out some parts of the yard that were un-mowable piles of dirt covered with weeds! I jammed up the mower a few times trying to cut them down. So I had dh go get my Dad's bucket tractor & smooth things up a bit. Now I have patches of dirt that will eventually be grass covered & as a bonus I had an abundance of rocks.

So I loaded them up in the kids red wagon & rolled them out front to edge one of my front yard gardens.

If you look at the front photo of my house you can see the sad empty space in front of the stone on the porch. The sad pointy evergreens are long gone & what you aren't seeing is a garden, landscaped & edged. There were actually plants here! A sad little azalea shrub on either side of the stairs, and misc other plantings. The previous owners had even used landscape cloth. When I ripped it all up (it just looked sickly!) I found that neither of the shrubs had ever outgrown their original root ball. The evergreens were still in their burlap. Since then I have been privileged to enjoy the work of former owner planting bulbs. There are multiple layers of flowers. In the early spring I enjoyed the white & purple crocus that came up, and now these are covering the entire length of my porch.

I have planted 2 Wisteria that climb up the posts, we almost lost one this spring to the unseasonably late cold weather, thankfully it has finally started to leaf. Last year I planted a mini rose bush I had received for a holiday, I was able to divide it into 2 plants so there is one on either end as well. Just this week I was at Aldi & bought a climbing peace rose for $3.99 and planted it to the right of the stairs.

The forget-me-nots are just getting started & will be in full force once the current display dies off. There is a daffodil in there & a tulip, but I think it got mowed.

This year we are going to focus on the right side of the stairs garden & getting a couple trees planted out front. I hate to cover up the facade, but we get a healthy wind as there is a wide open field across the street. DH wants to plant cherry trees, I guess I can live with that, at least they will be pretty in the spring.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Carnival of Home Improvement

Carnival of Home Improvement is hosted by Mortgage Low Down

I checked out #1 & there are some great submissions! I'll be back to check out 2 & see if I have anything worthy of submitting :D!

Sunday, April 15, 2007

No new photos

We are still moving into the upstairs. Of course with hubby breaking a foot we aren't going to moving any more heavy stuff up soon. We have the desk set up & my sewing machines are up, but we are still missing the file cabinets, my old sewing desk, a table for the kids to play at & all my sewing stuff! Plus we still have the fridge & stove in here, we are going to get rid of them (maybe look for a mini fridge at yard sales)

I have been thinking of putting in a couple Solatubes. My sister has one in her bathroom & it is fantastic. The light it lets in to the tub is great, no electricity needed! Since both bathrooms are either under the attic or downstairs has it's own roof, this should be fairly simple. I gather that the first floor bath would be easier, since it is a roof hubby will go on... But we have to have the main roof sealed & worked on anyways, maybe I'll get this sooner than I thought I would!

I am going to be looking for Closet storage ideas, thought I'd check Elfa Closet Solutions that Work at
. The bedroom upstairs is going to be used for storage of my fabrics (it's unheated, so it'll be fine as long as we remember to keep the door closed!) I am looking for hangning & shelving. I have a great Rubbermaid system downstiars, but it is over kill for my needs. I may just go with plastic ventilated shelving instead.

Couple of links I don't want to lose...

Tile Wet Saws FREE Shipping

"" Got A Screw Loose? can help you fix it! Click Here ""

Thursday, April 5, 2007

Lamps - Links

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Master Bedroom Work

We are still working in the Master Bedroom.

The walls are no longer wallpaper, I painted over it with Kilz Casual Colors. I think the color we chose was Cappuccino Spice, I couldn't find it on the website, but it looks exactly like it sounds!!! I like the Kilz One Coat. It covered the peach wallpaper well. It took more than one coat, but the second was really only to touch up brush strokes, it wasn't an overall 2nd coat. We used the same paint in my kitchen (red over wallpaper) it didn't cover as well, but I was in the hospital (had the Princess & dh had friends help him) when it got painted so I don't know why it didn't cover. The kitchen was a Satin & we used Semi gloss in the bedroom (wanted Satin, but think the semi reflects more light so the flaws aren't as obvious!) could be the difference.

We still need to wire for an overhead light fixture so the ceiling is still incomplete. DH is in the process of changing jobs & our time has become tight. I am happy that I finished the walls, so I could hang my clothes back in the closet. We also need to beef up the crown molding, it is quite wimpy!

This picture also shows one of the 2 leaded glass windows we have in the room. What's missing is the ugly blue roller shade hung just below the leaded window.
Shop at Wal-Mart for Kilz Casual Colors.

Not sure if I posted a picture of the surprises we found in the apartment when we took down the ugly 70s paneling so here:

We found 2 of these "holes" from old windows & lines where old walls must have been. The air leakage around these old windows was terrible, so we filled in with insulation everywhere we could feel a draft & even where we couldn't. Then we put the paneling back up (on this wall only) & painted it. It is so much warmer in the space.

That said our house is celebrating it's 140th birthday this year! So I guess we shouldn't be too surprised by what's behind the walls!!!

Shopping for new blinds

I was checking out Guaranteed Blinds. I am looking to replace the 4 roller shades in my bedroom. They came with the house & are blue. There is NO blue in my room anymore. The blue carpet, GONE, the peach & blue wallpaper, now Cappuccino Spice.

I am not sure which direction I am leaning. Dh is getting a day job, so no one will be sleeping until noon in there (at least not regularly!) I don't want to do mini blinds, even the Faux Wood blinds don't seem to fit, plus that is an awful lot of "wood". The window trim is about 4" wide, the base molding is about 6" & the floor is hardwood.

I think I am leaning towards Roller Shades in either a copper or tan color. Similar to what we already have, but maybe a more neutral color. The blue ones really stand out. Of course one of the windows is HUGE (over 4' wide) so to replace all 4 with completely new blinds is going to cost at least $200 and that is for the cheapest styles...

I have considered just replacing the material on the rollers I have. If I can find the right one I might co that direction, but I am bad in the fabric store...oh gee darn another excuse to go!!!

Thursday, March 29, 2007


The Doorbuster Blowout Sale at Lumber Liquidators!

I'll be checking out this deal! Our issue here is that all first floor doors are an odd size. Each one is slightly different & they are all extremely tall. We priced a new entrance door for the upstairs & to get one that we could fit into the existing frame would cost us $300+ for an ugly one...eek! We have a stash of old doors that are left & have been taken out of doorways, but try & figure out where they go???

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Up on the roof...

I really need to pick myself up a copy of The Complete Photo Guide to Home Improvement: With 300 Projects and 2,000 Photos (Black & Decker Home Improvement Library) by Creative Publishing international. I think it would be extremely helpful to me!!!

There are just so many projects we need to tackle here. I even got hubby out on the side porch roof just the other day! We lost part of our gutters, since they were just hanging by a strap I didn't want them blowing around possibly scratching the roof up. So up he went. First we tried our ladder, not exactly the best option, the ground is still really soft. So I suggested he go out the window in the upper bathroom. He had to remove the lower pane to do it, but he did!

I am constantly picking on him about his fear of heights, kind of like then why did we buy a 3 1/2 story house??? We don't exactly have the hire it out budget, at least not for the simple things...

Right now I think we are waiting for direction! We have lots of things we are "into" but no real idea where to go next... We need to finish the ceiling in our bedroom, we got half way & stopped because I decided I want to wire for a light fixture. So we need to buy wire & such before we can move ahead in there. We need to finish taking down the drop ceiling in the front room. We are going to paper that (with the embossed tin tile looking stuff) wire for overhead fixtures & eventually build our own box beams. We are also going to pull up all the carpet in the living areas. Seal the floor in the living room & probably paint the floor in the front room... I need to get the kids toys organized again & get the room cleared out before any of that can happen...

I guess I am having a Spring yard sale!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

We are almost there!

The apartment has been shown several times now, as soon as I have a taker I am going to poly the floor in the kitchen, nothing major, just enough to coat the paint so it won't scuff too easily.

Other than that the work is done. We are still hauling stuff down stairs - tools, paint, hardware, etc.

I think we have hit our 3 though, with the harddrive crash of 2007!!! I am thankful I left the damage pictures on my camera, or we'd be in trouble!

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Apartment Pics

Just thought I'd share a couple after pics with you...This is the newly painted living room, ah fresh clean linen white walls, instead of beat up 70s paneling!!! This is the new light fixture we put in the living room, I installed this one all by my self, aren't you impressed!!!
There are 2 of these roller shades up now, I took them down from our front room. I have curtains hanging in the windows now, so we didn't need them or like them. I hung them lower since privacy isn't an issue (we are the only 3 1/2 story house on the block!) and light was.
(the head is the princess, I was trying to take pics & she jumped in last second!) I haven't taken any pics of the bathroom paint job yet. And we replaced all the electrical outlets, even upgraded the bath & kitchen to GFCI.

I can't wait to get this job finished & I'll have a ton of after pics to share! Plus I'll have to show off my new ceiling fan for my kitchen!

Anniversary Invitations

I just celebrated my 12th wedding anniversary in November, so I have a ways to go before that coveted Silver Anniversary. My parents are approaching their 50th, in 8 years. So I am not planning any anniversary parties anytime soon. However, I will be sharing 50th Wedding invitations with friends who are looking to buy invitations.

I am in love with their "Our Past, Our Present" Wedding Anniversary Invitations line. It is just striking with the black & white photos. Granted it has been a while since I have purchased formal invitations, however these seem to be fairly priced. Especially for the styles they have available.

I can say that I will keep this site in mind for any golden wedding anniversary invitations I might need or any baby showers I might have to host in the future...

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Sunday, March 4, 2007

Bathroom Remodel

Just popping in here to dream about the new bathroom I might get, someday!!! Well at least the first floor bathroom, eventually we won't need to rent the front apartment out & then we'll have a grown up bathroom!!! I have a new mildew free ceiling. I still need to paint it with the mildew proof paint, but I have way too much to do upstairs in the apartment before we can finish up down stairs.

Our plans start here with a Tankless Water Heater. We have one in our concession trailer & we just love it! The way my hubby showers we need a boost.

I want a new tub except we aren't sure what we want. I'd like a slipper tub, but not on feet, the ones on a base. We would also like a shower. My ultimate goal would be floor to ceiling tile with a large drain in the middle of the room (those with kids can understand that, right?).

We are looking at the new stone looking laminate flooring & adding a new vanity with more counter space & a towel closet... To do this we will need to combine 2 rooms, for some reason the bath is a tiny 6x8 foot room with a 7x8 foot dressing room attached...It is just awkward & needs improvement!

I'd really love to upgrade my hardware. This Double Towel Bar looks like a perfect fit. My hope is to go with the "style" of the house but not really... if that makes sense! I am not a doily kind of girl, but I love some of the ornamentation of the Victorian Era. My tastes loom more towards French Prov, but that is today...Got Toile???

We have already added a newExhaust Fan with a Light ours has a heat lamp in it. The existing one when we moved in was just G-R-O-S-S! I think it was one of our first projects here!

I can't wait to show you after pics of all the work we are doing upstairs! I have some nasty before pics too...

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Cool switch plates

I love these switch plates!!! I am thinking that once the kitchen is completed they might go, right now they'd just look weird! We are forming our completion plan for the kitchen now, it'll be a while before we can do it all, but at least we'll have a plan. My island is onsale for $299 this week, granite top, big enough to fit 4 stools at... can't wait!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

It rained in my Bedroom

So these are the before pics... All this work because our flaky former tenant left water supply lines for her washer on the floor, still running...
We only caught about 2 gallons of the gross water, the insulation was soaked & so much of it ran right through our floor into the basement there must have been tons of it.

Of course this happened at 8:20 PM with me home alone with the kiddos, cuz dh was at a meeting... I am running around trying to find the key to the apartment, buckets & the phone number for where the meeting is all while trying to get the Prince to finish his reading homework & get to bed. Why does it always seem to happen like that...

We had to take down half of the ceiling because the insulation was soaked from wall to wall. Just to the right of the most damage is MY CLOSET! I am now living with my clothes on a couch outside our bedroom, because I can't put them away until we have finished the ceiling including paint. It was a week ago yesterday that this happened & I don't see us finishing this job before the end of the weekend. I'll just say that it didn't make for a romantic Valentine's Day...

So we have been busy trying to repair this mess. We are using dry wall instead of ceiling tiles. It was the cheaper option (replacing the damaged tiles = $144 + staples for half of ceiling, dry wall = $79.76 + screws, tape & mud for whole ceiling). The real deciding factor was that the store only had 2 boxes of the right tile & we needed 4. Choosing to drywall was certainly not the easiest choice. We are cutting the sheets in half so I can help. I don't think I'd be able to lift an 8 foot sheet of drywall over my head & hold it until it is screwed in enough to let go while standing on a ladder hoping the 3 year old is distracted by the DVD she is watching...

The bright side to this (I am reaching here, give me a break!) is that we used the undamaged tiles to replace the disgusting tiles in the bathroom. I still need to paint them to seal them so the new ones don't mold like the old ones did, but it looks 100% better.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Insulating Adventures

I posted about our insulating adventures over at The Frugal Momma.

We have had quite a time of it with our weather being below 10 degree F temps with -10 degree wind chills.

Older home living is always an adventure but the past few days have found us with sheets over the doors, blankets rolled up at the bottom of doors, both back up electric space heaters running & me wanting to roast things in the oven and doing laundry just to run the dryer!!!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

I was asked to write an entry about so I visited their website.

I was disappointed to learn that they do not have a professional installer serving my area. You can find this information by typing your zip code in at, however I was liking their selection. They have wood, vinyl, & aluminum blinds; cellular, roman & roller shades; horizontal & vertical options.

I haven't yet begun shopping around for new blinds, so I can't tell you if's prices are in line with everyone else. I did browse through their selection of roller shades. My house is full of roller shades, ugly roller shades to boot! So I am in the market to replace them, someday.

Not only does have a ton of colors & textures to choose from, I didn't think the pricing was that high or out of whack. The 6 tier pricing was dependant on size and color choice.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Blogging Chicks!

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Wednesday, January 3, 2007

The closet makeover Day 1

These pics are from the before! Don't ya just love the wallpaper!, I wanted to keep some & frame it. The hole in the first picture was made by DH. He had to see what was back there, now this required removing 2 rods & 2 shelves... That was October. So I made him go by some insul board & I said luan (he got hardboard, impossible!). Of course I ask the stupid question too late "how hard would it be to put a light in there?" Why, why, why do I do it!!! Wasn't bad enough I made him take the hardboard out, it was the worst stuff he could have gotten, no flexibility at all. So we at least have the insul board up, now he wants to rip out the back wall & insulate the floor behind the wall anyways.
So it isn't completed, but I hung a rod so at least it is a closet again!

Look there are clothes in there!!!! WooHoo!