2

Part 14 of the Dumpster Diaries: Finishing the Back Room AND Bye Bye Dumpster! (plus other updates).

I *thought* I had a half finished blog post draft saved, but when I went to find it, it was gone.

It’s been SO BUSY around here that I have had barely enough time to think, much less write.

I am NOT going to post more pics of the back room til I get more decorating done- most people are shocked currently by the incredibly orange walls LOL! It has to be entirely finished to understand… I am doing a hippie dippy music theme melange in there. I feng shui’d the CRAP outta that room, to boot.

Here is a rundown of what happened:

~Finished the back room drywalling and painted the walls/ceiling.
~Added an area rug that the neighbors didn’t want anymore
~Moved the sofa bed from the front porch(!!) to the back room
~Assembled and set up the desk
~They took away the dumpster(and I miss it already)

We still have to:

~Finish decorating back room
~Move the rest of our clothes from the back room closet to the master bedroom walk in closet
~Get all of Sam’s crap that’s piled to the ceiling out of the dining room
~Hang the Ikea Kirp shelves for his video games and books
~Wait for the art to arrive from Thailand

What else I did (mostly purchases for back room):

~Ordered curtain panels from India

ordered 4 panels of these ganesha elephant curtains

ordered 4 panels of these ganesha elephant curtains

~Ordered white wooden plantation blinds for the windows

plantation blinds

plantation blinds

~Ordered some awesome throw pillows for the sofa

I admit, I ordered this one because it appealed more to me than it would to my son

I admit, I ordered this one because it appealed more to me than it would to my son

this album isn't his fave, but I love the quirky cover art

this album isn’t his fave, but I love the quirky cover art

The dumpster was taken away last Friday… I must admit, I am really sad to see it go.

ft

View from my porch… it was almost TOO full by the time they came to get it

bye bye dumpster...

bye bye dumpster…

We will probably be renting another one in a month when we start the downstairs bathroom renovations. This thing was almost TOO full by the time they took it back. R and the rest of the guys spent the last day filling it with refuse and junk from the basement and garage. They didn’t even bother telling me what they were tossing out- I told them not to.

Sam leaves tomorrow for the Pax Prime convention in Seattle and will be gone for a week. My dad has cataract surgery tomorrow morning and will be spending the night here because it’s closer to his doctor’s. Connor and Maisie’s birthdays (and my dad’s) are coming up in the next 2 weeks- and school starts on the 8th!

I have to devote my time to finding birthday presents, planning parties, getting back-to-school supplies, AND CLEANING THIS F*CKING HOUSE UP! I am toying with the idea of hiring some of the cleaning out at this point.

2 of our Dyson vacuum cleaners decided to die within a week of each other. The last one started going out 2 days ago. This is not good when you have 3 giant, perpetually shedding Newfoundland dogs.

Also, last but not least, Maisie is finally starting to walk!

0

Part 13 of the Dumpster Diaries: Getting the Walk in Closet Organized With A Fast Moving Toddler And Falling Short of Goals…

Today’s set of tasks seemed simple:

“Move clothes and makeup upstairs, put everything away, and clean up the mess in in there and my bedroom… plus get my bed linens washed.”

vr3

everything from the closet has spilled into my bedroom

vr

the bed sheets need to be washed ASAP

11870835_10153246239934024_3346753357059096417_n

what awaited me on the counter

11892208_10153246239909024_222825468720115925_n

piles of CLEAN laundry dumped by my sons (UGH) and needing to be sorted/put away by ME

Except I forgot one crucial thing: I have a crawling, curious cyclone of an 11 month old baby.

And OH, she learned to do this today, too:

View this post on Instagram

Cutie pie

A post shared by Miss Maisie & Mommy (@missmaisiebabyfashionista) on

I got the closet reasonably organized while she napped. By the time she woke up and I was in the swing of things, all bets were off. If I put stuff away in drawers, she wanted to remove them from drawers. The dresser scarf FASCINATED HER and she tried to pull that (and the box on the dresser) off about 10-20 times. If I turned around, she was pulling shoes off the racks. C accidentally left my bedroom door open and I found her trying to climb into the bathtub.

“What could THIS be?”

“Let’s pull it and everything else out and check”

I swear, training puppies is easier than human babies. Thank goodness she’s cute.

pulling the dresser scarf and box off for the 10th time. I think puppies are easier to train than people.

pulling the dresser scarf and box off for the 10th time.
I think puppies are easier to train than people.

When I sat to fold laundry and sorted her pile onto the floor, she tried to help, which was ADORABLE:

With the help of C, I was finally able to corral her long enough to get things put away. All the tools were brought back downstairs.

makeshift sink vanity

makeshift sink vanity

I hauled some of my makeup upstairs and constructed a sort of vanity over the sink- effectively KINDA disguising the old faucet. We can’t remove the damned thing yet because there’s no shut off valve under the sink 😦 It was put in too long ago…

No, you can't see the faucet... shhhh... don' tell me!

No, you can’t see the faucet… shhhh… don’t tell me!

All the clothes that were in tubs were put up. I haven’t gone through anything in the dressers yet, because I’m not in the mood. This was so overwhelming as it is.

11846565_10153246240619024_6397264770385433618_n

I have a ton of vintage linens, which comes in handy for times like these

11899943_10153246514564024_7533379066691840009_n

my antique-ish piggybank collection

11880674_10153246514359024_8158904391137538533_n

my ‘helper’

11866376_10153246514394024_6350854004127333976_n

after throwing out so many clothes, I am kind of freaked out by how empty my closet is. I KNOW I have way more than this! WHERE IS IT?!

11885258_10153246514439024_7161647792287497080_n

my Louis Vuitton collection, up and away from people who might mistake it for trash. I really need to clean the leather on a couple of em.

11895986_10153246514594024_7406196518580774999_n

under the hamper: cleaning products that I need to have a strong male bring downstairs to be put away safely

In the end, I got about 75 percent of what I set out to do done, which I am ok with. The bedroom and bedding will be cleaned tomorrow or bust. I will also be sorting through all of my makeup downstairs and continuing to bring it to the closet.

11870843_10153246514679024_4233099716401789853_n

AFTER!

11866448_10153246514699024_3198283398902331283_n

MORE AFTER

11224306_10153246971439024_3311326061292808734_n

I couldn’t bear looking at the plaster damage by the light any longer- and we can’t spackle it til next week- my quick fix

0

Part 12 of the Dumpster Diaries: NO MAJOR CLOSET RENOVATION HAPPENING- but We Got the Ghetto Walk In Closet Installed!

11880343_10153244967374024_8626816994711455902_n 11233773_10153244967354024_7552789740213235370_nI have to say: I am getting burnt out.

This has been the theme song for the kitchen to closet renovation:

img_3672

He had a hard time with the gas line- it was so old that the valve took a lot of work to shut off

We decided NOT to do a full redo on the closet… for a couple of reasons:

1. We’re freaking TIRED of living like this
2. We have no place to put our clothes
3. We discovered that our kitchen sink lines are SO OLD upstairs that there’s no turn off valve for the water!!!  The main also is difficult to turn off and we don’t need the additional cost right now of a plumber.
4. We are going to do a REAL redo of the upstairs bathroom and this old kitchen NEXT YEAR and gut the entire thing- enlarging the existing bath and redesigning the walk in closet.

Anyway, so ghetto closet renovation is what we ended up with!

11891247_10153244616824024_4442306726542047288_n

My friends graciously came and removed the appliances, plus an old airconditioner and toaster oven- which was a great relief! I dusted, vacuumed, and scrubbed the disgusting walls and floor… then we put down a large, almost new area rug that the neighbors didn’t want.

11866346_10153242332504024_2861088173803645504_n

here is the BEFORE- just to remind everyone

Of course, while putting up the closet system, ANOTHER thing went wrong when we discovered (or remembered) that the house’s chimney runs along the corner where the closet was going up. Luckily, he worked that out.

IMG_3677

A closet full of vintage fiesta ware in my pantry- yeah, my closet has a closet

11880578_10153244616904024_1135451093943823419_n

how disgusting is this? What it looked like after appliances left

11898942_10153244814509024_5563530155341689971_n

after washing walls and floors, he unrolls rug to cover the ancient linoleum

11885065_10153244825124024_8277173035689060714_n

Maisie in beast mode!

11866262_10153244824589024_5786325255208713380_n

helping Daddy install closet system

11888004_10153244814779024_2868982512696691079_n

Maisie checking out the new room

11825721_10153244936729024_2619705289000228393_n

the install

11902268_10153244936884024_6692587331666608010_n

the corner is where the house’s chimney is- and where we momentarily ran into trouble

AFTER!!

AFTER!!

Tomorrow I have to hang clothes, do laundry, put away stuff, bring makeup up, etc. R is back at work til Wednesday, so the big stuff will have to wait til then.


3

Part 11 of the Dumpster Diaries: MUDDING, Spackling, and all the icky drywall stuff nobody likes… plus preview of kitchen into closet hell

looking good! We have walls!

looking good! We have walls!

Today was the day when the first coat of joint compound went on the drywall seams and the cracks in the plaster walls were spackled… R did a fantastic job. The room will need 2 more coats and sanding- so no painting for a couple more days, unfortunately.

11902345_10153242331004024_8453957380674127701_n

the sanding part (that’s coming up) is the worst part

11873432_10153242330929024_8723027562639273071_n

cracks are spackled

11885108_10153242330834024_6615462972534218595_n

more spackled cracks

11707793_10153242428829024_5471998262518527272_n

not too shabby

11245795_10153242428864024_3760856949940615246_n

the smooth new ceiling makes me so happy

11866206_10153242330779024_36491254171941865_n

new outlet box

We will be working on the upstairs kitchen while the joint compound dries. The upstairs kitchen to walk in closet redo is seeming even more daunting than the back room project now… AND we have only ONE WEEK in which to complete this closet room (dumpster goes back on 21st).

11866346_10153242332504024_2861088173803645504_n

OMG HOW AM I GOING TO GET THIS EMPTIED AND TURNED INTO A CLOSET IN A WEEK?!?!

11902470_10153242332479024_6762157976971240100_n

I have a lot of shoes. I think I may need to sell my dressers, no room in here for them.

R is now thinking that we won’t have the time nor wherewithal to remove the cabinets and sink. We also discovered that the ancient gas line to the stove has a stuck gas valve- so we have no idea how we’re going to cap this damned thing off. I may have to call the gas company.

0

Part 10 of the Dumpster Diaries: We Have Drywall UP AND Electricity Done!

the ceiling getting covered

Words cannot describe how happy I am that the drywall’s been installed and the electricity has been redone! R (with occasional help from the other guys and me) spent the entire day in there- from about 3 pm til nearly midnight.

the part of the ceiling with plaster damage is now covered!

The back room ceiling had plaster damage from an earlier flood in the upstairs bathroom and kitchen.

breaker box in my scary basement, next to my canning stuff. I don’t know which is scarier- the basement or the electrical in this house

R also added a breaker and isolated the room. That way, if someone trips a breaker in the kitchen (where it was hooked up previously), Sam’s internet show isn’t shut down. (He works online and does a live broadcast daily)

doorway to bathroom is going bye bye

One of the walls used to lead to the downstairs bathroom, but we covered that, too.

He hung a ceiling box where the old gaslight lines were

Wall ready for mudding!!!

Here are some other photos of the newly hung drywall:

Bedtime… so glad the ceiling and wall are done

he put the old light back just for now so that we could have light in there

ceiling and wall covering old plaster damage

ceiling completely hung

6

Dumpster Diaries: Purging Other Rooms with the Help of Flylady.Net and THE MIRACLE OF MICROFIBER CLEANING CLOTHS!

Since I my hands are tied 4 days a week from working on the 2 rooms we’re supposed to focus on (R works 14 hours most days), I am focusing on other rooms and clutter… particularly, the kitchen.

flylady

flylady.net is a fantastic website devoted to teaching folks how to keep their homes clean

A friend introduced me to this fantastic site, Flylady.net, which is devoted to teaching people how to manage their chaos and keep their houses clean. It’s been an invaluable tool thus far for me… even though I am still a FlyBaby and haven’t read everything yet.

The first thing they want you to do every morning and before bed is to make sure the sink is empty and shining- totally dried off. I’ve been doing this all week, which is a big deal because I DETEST doing dishes. I removed the dish drainer from the counter permanently and now have the dishes going straight into the dishwasher… and put up promptly when they’re done. I’ve been slowly cleaning off my counter tops and throwing away 27 things every day.

this is the emptiest and tidiest my counters have been since the baby was born

this is the emptiest and tidiest my counters have been since the baby was born

It’s a start and I am pretty proud of myself.

They also advocate doing laundry daily (done) and the use of microfiber cloths for cleaning. I had never used them prior to this and am so impressed with how much I can now clean WITHOUT the use of cleaning products. Amazon had a deal for 48 cloths for $22.99, which I snapped up.

I had given up keeping my stainless range clean of oil splatters. In the past I’ve purchased every cleaner known to man and even scratched the hell out of it with scrub pads to no avail. When I read that I could pretty much get it looking nearly-new with just WATER AND 2 MICROFIBER CLOTHS, I snapped them up and went to work.

h

Left side, not done. Right side, cleaned with just a wet (with water) microfiber and a dry one to shine it

Holy CRAP- it works! I am still in shock!

hh

example of persistent grease splatters and scratches from my earlier scrubbing endeavors

hhhh

water and microfiber won’t remove my scratches (I don’t think), but it DID remove the oily spots! I’m a convert!

These cloths have already cleaned a majority of my kitchen without resorting to using nasty chemicals- just plain ole water! If I have a tougher job, I will use white vinegar or Dawn dish soap- and it’s worked! I’ve also cut down on my paper towel usage by using these things, too.

I have to confess that I *do* love the smell of bleach in a clean house, but haven’t used bleach with these microfiber cloths and won’t.

Tomorrow I will be doing the fridge, throwing more items away, and starting on our counter top that houses the microwave and coffee maker.

The main theme of the Flylady site is that it didn’t get messy overnight, so don’t try to clean it all at once- which is a terrific reminder! I set the timer on my phone in 5 min increments and devote only that amount of time to any particular spot in the ‘zone’ I am working in. My house may still be a chaotic hell hole, but it’s coming together at a steady pace now!

4

Part 9 of the Dumpster Diaries: Less Dumpster-More Diary. Good News and Bad News…

Sam FINALLY agreed on the wall art

Sam FINALLY agreed on the wall art

The GOOD NEWS:

I bought the ‘inspiration piece’ for the back room.

Sam is SOOO picky about the art I put on the walls and liked this one. He was worried it would scream “I’m a little kid living at Mommy’s house!” or be too ‘busy’… he won’t like the fact that it’s going to be bigger than what he wants, but he gets no choice in that since he has no sense of scale.

This is hilarious and will tie in all the colors of that back room.

All the drywall, paint, and things (we think) that we need so far have been purchased, too.

$_12 (4)

I ordered this canvas print tonight from Thailand- was a good deal at $45US for a 3 ft print.

We found a light fixture in a burnished wood that we LOVED.

this is masculine and unusual enough for a dude's office, I think

this is masculine and unusual enough for a dude’s office, I think

We also bought the paint at Home Depot- R prefers Behr products. The color we’re using is a bold orange for the walls- white for the ceiling.

yes, the chosen wall color will be a super bold orange

yes, the chosen wall color will be a super bold orange- and that gouge above the swatch is ready to be filled with drywall mud-

We installed a new electrical outlet and are running entirely new lines to the breaker box. All of the electrical will now have it’s own breaker in that room, which will safeguard Sam’s show if another breaker in the house pops.

this outlet is going to be near his new desk- the other outlets were further away and in weird places

this outlet is going to be near his new desk- the other outlets were further away and in weird places

drywall waiting to be installed over light fixture on ceiling

Now for the BAD NEWS:

After getting the cracks scraped out to fill and fix, the new electrical boxes installed, buying all the stuff, and putting up exactly HALF A SHEET of drywall, we discovered that the light fixture in the ceiling was connected to AN ANTIQUE GASLIGHT PIPE.

Our house was built in 1912 by a German wagonmaker and his family. 1912 is kind of late in my area for gas lighting, but he must have thought it was a cheaper option or something when he built this house.

ONLY half a sheet of the thinnest drywall was up and then we ran into a problem

ONLY half a sheet of the thinnest drywall was up and then we ran into a problem

It now requires a new thingamajig (don’t ask me the name of it, I don’t know) in order to connect the new light fixture.

see that pipe? It's for an old-timey GASLIGHT!

see that pipe? It’s for an old-timey GASLIGHT!

Plus Sam was doing his internet show, so we couldn’t turn off the electricity like we needed to on R’s last day off this week. Everything is on hold until next Wednesday (R’s next day off). Hopefully, we will be able to finish the drywall, plus mudding and sanding- and hopefully paint the new ceiling/walls then.

We have less than 10 days left of dumpster rental. I was hoping that all of this stuff would have been finished by now. Everything has been SO slow going.