Last year we rented a piano. We had planned on buying it when the year was up. The year is now officially up and we are returning it. I have enough day to day stuff to yell at my kids about without having to add practicing the piano. It was an expensive experiment. I spent $400.00 to find out they are not going to practice unless I make them. I'd rather find a free piano on freecycle for that. So now that the piano is going to be out of the way I think I will make that room it is in into something useable instead of a clutter room. I feel guilty to have a room that I don't have to use for something especially since it has an attached bath. I know many other people who have not enough space. Now to decide what to turn the room into. No one visits so don't need a guest room. Was thinking of a sewing/craft room or I could move the schoolroom downstairs and make that area something else but I just decorated it and really don't want to change. Can't move our bedroom downstairs, might not hear the kids if they need me in the night (and they usually do) This is a really fun "problem" to have.
Viewing the 'House remodeling adventures' Category
I have been thinking of the idea of spending 30 minutes a day decluttering and 30 minutes a day cleaning a room. i tend to pick big projects rather than little bites then rest on my laurels for way too long. Maybe this would work better.
I have also been thinking of remodeling the bathroom downstairs on my own. Not sure I am up to it but you never know. Certainly can't afford to hire someone to do it!
I am so excited, I get to go to Menards and get all the stuff(or order it) for my kitchen remodel. They came and measured yesterday. I can't wait!!!
It has been a bit shy of a year since my last entry. Life got real busy and facebook got real fun!!
As I prepare to remodel the kitchen however I decided to start blogging about the financial part of it. We are on a low budget for this as for anything we do. Our income tax check provided the money to do the kitchen and pay off one fo the credit cards we thought. That was of course before our DIL got stuck in AZ with her eldest and needed a bit of a hand. Ah well, at least it wasn't money earmarked for bills. So less of a budget and some rearranging of priorities. No regrets on how we spent the money tho. We are going to replace the cabinets, install a dishwasher, panel walls, put in a new counter, sink, faucet, 2 windows, back door, screen door, and paint the ceiling and replace the linoleum with a rug all for under 5500. Like I said small kitchen. I am going to take before and after photos too. I got two estimates. They were within 250 of each other. We went with the lower one because he is by far the more professional of the two. Besides he says he can put in a standard 32 inch door instead of my paying 600 for a "special" door. So 2500 is the estimate tear out what's there and install new. I am buying off the shelf cabinets although I am not staining them myself. i could save around 400 by staining them myself but I think doing that to 9 cabinets (with the help of a 5 and 6 year old) sounds like a nightmare. Besides the end goal is to sell the house so predone is probably a better option (my painting skills are a bit lacking). I am however painting the ceiling my self. I will post more as I spend more!
No not everything just kind of shaking the house up and seeing where everything falls! I have moved several pieces of furniture in the dining room and now am onto the living room. Put the dog crate in the kitchen now. I put a large board on top and am using that to fold and sort laundry. I have lots more to do in there but am content if I make a visible difference every day.
I ordered rugs for the living room and dining room finally. I have been waiting till I found some I really like. I even got one for the bathroom. One is a second so it was like 40 % off and I had a 15% discount on all of them. It was more than I would have paid at a garage sale but I love the rugs. The site is rugheaven.com if anyone wants to check it out.
We needed a new table, actually the table was ok but we needed new chairs. The other ones were collapsing. Did teach my 3 yr old not to wiggle so much, every time she did on of the legs fell off. Anyway I wanted a bench type this time to fit in the space I have better. I was planning on getting one at Aldi's if they ran their sale again. It was around 2 hundred last year. Not the best table but it would do for several years. As we were driving past my neighbors shop I saw a great rectangular table with benches in front of it. The table had been 369 and the benches were 119. (each) I got all three pieces for 299. I was delighted, especially when they agreed to deliver it on their way home!! All I have to do is cover the seats with plastic (little kids) The table will last the rest of our lives I am sure. It is wood, solid tree trunks about 3 or 4 inches in diameter for legs and the sides of the bench and the plank part of the table is at least 1 and 1/2 inches thick. A great table.
We recently had to deal with an "act of God" according to our insurance company. WE had a hail storm. The adjuster came out and ignored what we told him of prior damage. The check came with our name and the mortgage companies names on it and we sent it off to be endorsed. They wrote back that we had to send a copy of the adjusters report, a home owners report, a signed contract with a contractor for all the work, and a signed statement that the work is done (by the contractor) and arrange for periodic inspections. I never intend to have all the work done the adjuster said was necessary (and several contractors since have said isn't) so I had a problem with what do they do with the rest of the money? We're talking several thousand dollars here. I called the insurance company and asked them to reconsider the damage with me telling them what should be done and thus saving them money. They refused and said we could repair the part we wanted and keep the rest. She told me that while she knew I wouldn't do it we could just lie to the mortgage company and they would release the money. I called our mortgage agent who said the mortgage company should release all of the funds or apply the balance to the mortgage. I'd prefer the former but at least I knew where the money would be going. Then he told me they might just require that all the work be done. He then told me to find a contractor who would lie for me. I called the mortgage company and explained about prior damage and that I didn't want shutters and..... The girl listened then looked up my account and said oh we endorsed the check and sent it back this morning you can do whatever you want with the money. We had been praying that the Lord would release those funds so that we could have the actual damage repaired and use the rest of the money to help us afford an overseas adoption if the local thing doesn't work out. I believe God Blessed us because we were honest.
Wow, if you look up at the ceiling and paint it with a roller for 30 minutes, you end up really dizzy and with a sore neck. I do have a nice tan ceiling though. I also have 3 beige walls and one garden green one. I have to do the corners and around th ewindows and doors as well as paint the trim but that will be later. I also have a cupboard waiting some beige paint but that will be a breeze since I have an able, willing and quite excited 3 yr old who wants to help. OK Maybe it will take longer than the rest of the room put together!! But is will be lots more fun!!
Getting a contractor is a real trial right now. We are 3 weeks later than everyone else and the really good ones are no longer taking new customers. I did have one smaller company come out and give an estimate. We got the check from the insurance company and the list of what needs to be done. The first hurdle is that the check is made out to the mortgage company and me the next hurdle is figuring out what really needs done. I just had the garage roof put on and refuse to believe it needs to be torn off and redone. I mean it was finished a week before the hail storm. The house roof is 2 years old but I am afraid to risk not having it done. The siding needs to be repaired in several places but they want me to redo two sides entirely. Great then my house can be two different colors!! The people that gave me a bid said they would take the good siding off of the back and use it to fill in where it is needed on the sides that "show" and then reside the back as closely as they can to the rest of the color. I guess we can paint vinal siding someday! Right now it looks like we will be spending about half the check they gave us on work that needs to be done. The other half will be ours to use. We are considering using it to fund an overseas adoption. It wouldn't cover all of it but it would make it possible.
On the home front my DH is still sick, this makes about 6 weeks.
I started what will be our bedroom today. I probably should have waited until I was done cleaning the accumulation of stuff form our trip that was still here when we got back but wanted (needed) to do something positive. I decided since the other room I did didn't need primer, this one wouldn't Bad mistake. The color I picked out is not going to go on without 3 coats so I have to primer th eother walls. Then we realized neither of us liked the color for the wall. I was doing one wall in cranberry (we do live in WIsconsin) and the others in beige when we decided that the expense of changing th ecolor was well worth it. I went with a nice forest green this time. I have primer on 3 walls and have to wait for it to dry to apply more. Today has been rough. Maybe I should have just cleaned!! So far this room has cost me $110.00 and I haven't decided what to do about the window and door trim or the door for that matter (their isn't one!) We really hope to fix this up and rent it out but I am getting bogged down. I am probably just tired form the month away.
While we were away there was a hail storm. I didn't think anything about it even though we were told the hail was as big as softballs. after all our car was 3000 miles away so was safe. This morning our neighbor approached me and said we should call the insurance person anyway because you can't tell what may have happened to the roof. I called since we had just put the garage roof on and the house was only a couple years old (roof) It seems that somewhere there was 13,000 dollars worth fo damage done!! I can't wait to see the list of what we need to do!! The good news is that this is an act of God and won't count against us insurance rates wise. I am amazed at the amount of signs on lawns advertising roof repair. This storm must have been intense. Some lady stuck her head out the window (the better to see the hail I guess) and had to go get stitches. The estimate will be here shortly. Hope it doesn't leave me with two different colors of siding on my house or I may have to talk to my company about that!!
I am rearranging out downstairs and upstairs so we have less clutter or at least it looks like less.It is not very fun!
I am getting ready for two trips. One is North a little ways because we have to have an interview (theology school stuff) and it is Saturday. The other is much longer. WE are going to GA to see our son before he ships out (they changed it from July to September but they are sending him for 15 months now) and then up to NC to see three of our grandkids baptized. WE will get a few days with each family and we are really looking forward to it. What we are not looking forward to is paying for gas for the drive!!! We pack food, snacks and drinks and only stay at really cheap hotels (no more than 50 per night or we sleep in the car!!) but the gas prices hurt this time. I keep saying if we were in Europe we wouldn't be able to afford to go!! I so wish we lived closer but we couldn't find DH a job any closer.So we have to content ourselves with twice a year visits. (Unless one of them has a new baby then we go an extra time) OH well.
And I mean that literally. OK It is actually still Spring but we are cold at night with only one comforter. God has been good to us with the rain though. Today I did 7 loads of laundry 3 of which I hung outside. They dried in lightening time due to the wind whipping through. After we went in at night it poured and stormed. God does a great lightening show. DH is still clearing a spot for DS2's playgym and taking the sod he picks up and placing it on the many bare patches in the yard. Everytime he spends time at that it rains. The "sod" is taking really well. The wood is drying so we will be able to chip as soon as he is done. He hope to chip before our trip East but I think that would be pushing it. Right after we get back though. Today I rearranged the living room and moved bookcases from up to downstairs so that I can turn the up part into a "workshop" for me. I want to put my sewing machine and stampin stuff up there out of reach of little ones. We are still praying God sends a little one soon so we are getting a room ready. When the stuff was down here it was too messy and dangerous to tiny ones.
I am trucking right along on my remodle job of DS2 playroom. So far I have painted walls, painted a Veggie Tale Mural, painted a silouette of him with metallic paint (can put magnets of that part of the wall now and they stick!!) hung various posters of Veggie Tales, and purchased carpet. The blisters come from cutting the carpet tomorrow. I also have to finish th ebaseboard and get some mild crates for books. I made a pillow and curtains also. It is taking shape and for not alot of money (the metallic paint was a splurge but cool)
As in making them. I made door curtains for my DIL porch door and am starting on their bedroom ones. I am also painting a mural on the wall of my 3yr old's playroom. It is (of course) Veggie Tales and really fun to do. Doesn't take any talent since it came with a large size picture that you just trace over and the lines show up on th ewall. Then you just paint by number. It is cool. My DIL wants one also. I found metallic paint, as in when you are done you can put magnets on the wall and they stay. i am going to do a silouette of my DS2 in that stuff. I bought hooks for his dress up stuff and masks to be stored on. We are picking up wood and cement blocks tonight for a train platform (free cycle stuff yea) and I made a big pillow for the reading corner. I need to find milk crates for the books to be in. It will be easier for him to clean up that way.
Today is monumental. I bought paint a roller pan and am getting started on the walls of the house. I am starting with the playroom which will involve painting all of them after fixing them (which I did today) anld then painting a mural on them (Veggie Tales of course). Then figuring out what to put on the floor, where to put toys and how to build a train platform. I want to put in a "book corner" with soft veggie Tales pillows and lots fo favorite books. I want to get a low bookshelf or some cubes he can reach and keep presentable himself. I had put the books on a shelf in the library (actually he had his own shelf just outside the library which is just outside his bedroom) but somehow most fo the books ended up down here on his rocker. I don't want to discourage this so I am putting in a reading corner. For my next trick I will find away of making a platforn for the train to be on so we don't have to ruin a great display to be able to play with something else for awhile.