Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Mudroom Substitute

While I want, want, WANT a mudroom, and it may - no, will - happen someday, dog surgeries and new roofs must be paid off first. In the meantime, snow, sand, and salt from the winter storms are getting tracked all over the house and defeating my cleaning efforts of the last post, so we really need to find an acceptable short term solution.

Jim mentioned a boot tray last night. I'd love it if it looked something like this Martha Stewart version

That's kinda cute - I could live with that. And maybe I could make a simple little bench to sit on while you take your snowy boots and shoes off. The only real place to put it would be under one of the kitchen windows. Not ideal, as that's where the door swings open to, but this is all a temporary compromise, right?

Then Jim suggested I combine that with a radiator cover I've been thinking of making... I yakked about it here last winter. Here's some pictures of ones I'd like to copy...

Before any of you think I'm ruining the look of old radiators - never fear, these kitchen radiators are hideous and plain - not like the decorative radiators in other parts of the house. And for any of you that think I'll be ruining the heating efficiencies of the radiators by covering them, know that we now use the pellet stove as the primary heat source, and only turn the furnace on when it is extremely cold out...

It's kind of hard to see, but this is the wall with one of the radiators (covered with project supplies). The window to the left of it is where we're thinking of possibly putting the boot mat, and the back door is just to the left of the window.

I think I need to come up with a serious design for this. I've been watching woodworking video podcasts... we'll see. I'm never at a loss for projects. What I really need to do is focus and finish the bathroom doors (2nd door is half scraped). Oh - and classes start back up on Thursday.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Cleaning Lists

I am a list person. For those of you who know me, this is no surprise. I don't feel like I got anything done (even if I actually did) unless I can cross something off of that list. Sometimes I even add things to my list after I've done them, just so that I can cross them off.

For some reason this weekend, I was getting disgusted at the filthiness of my kitchen and bathrooms. So I decided I was going to do a deep cleaning. I Googled cleaning checklists - and there are some fancy and pretty ones out there - but I just needed a plain old list. So I searched and combined and added a few items. Maybe I'll use this as a template for everytime I clean?

Here's my checklist for the Kitchen:
• Dishes washed
• Countertops and backsplash cleaned
• Cabinet fronts washed and wiped
• Sinks scrubbed and disinfected (including behind sink)
• Outside of appliances (oven, refrigerator, dishwasher, stovetop)
• Inside and outside of microwave cleaned
• Small appliances wiped
• Wash inside windows
• Window sills wiped down and cleaned
• Baseboards dusted or wiped
• Spot wipe walls and switch plates
• Fingerprints washed from woodwork and doorframes
• Clean light shades
• Clean pet dishes
• Trash emptied
• Wash or dust table and chairs
• Floor vacuumed and mopped and dried
• Wash area rugs
• Replace dish towels

And here's my checklist for the Bathrooms:
• Sink cleaned, disinfected and rinsed
• Tub and/or shower tiles cleaned, disinfected and rinsed
• Wall tiles cleaned
• Chrome fixtures shined and cleaned
• Toilet base, rim, inside and outside disinfected and wiped
• Vanity top cleaned and items organized and put away
• Towels changed
• Mirrors cleaned
• Window sills wiped down
• Dust & clean shelves
• Spot wipe walls and switch plates
• Trash emptied
• Baseboards dusted and/or wiped
• Vacuum and mop and dry floor

Everything on those lists was done for the kitchen and both the bathrooms this weekend. They look nice now.

I'm embarrassed to say, but I don't clean nearly as often as I should. I mean, I try and keep up with the dishes every day or every other day. But things like mopping - that hadn't been done since we had our party in November. There just doesn't seem to be enough hours in the day to do everything... How often do you mop your floors? Wait, maybe I don't want to know!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

One - One Working Door!

That's right - all the hardware is back on and the door is back up. Here's a look at the installed doorknob & backplate:

The plain hardware is kind of growing on me - now that it's all put together. It doesn't exactly match the rest of the nickel & chrome stuff in the bathroom... but I'll probably live with it for now.

We were pretty close to having the door fit, but had to chisel out a little bit at the striker plate:

Here's a picture of the door all closed from inside the bathroom:

It might not look very exciting - but believe me, our next guests will be very happy to have actually have the privacy! The only wierd thing is that the door was poor fitting for so long and people had sort of jammed the door closed, that the top corner of the door is literally bent out - so it still sticks out a little when the rest of the door is closed...

Now it's time to start work on the 2nd door. To better understand the issue and why I am scraping the doors down to bare wood, here's some pictures of the 2nd door...

Maybe I'm obesessive, but it really annoys me when there's giant paint chipped areas that have just been painted over. Or when it gets all gummed up and nasty at the edge. yuck. It's like those little "shabby chic" places that have peeling paint as a decorative element - blah! just makes me feel like scraping it off.

Anyway - here's a view at the different paint layers inside the bathroom:

From latest to earliest, the trim has been
-white (painted by me)
-lilac (the existing color when I moved in)
-mint or sea green (very similar to what is on the walls now)
-tan-like apricot
-dark stain or varnish

What a crazy rainbow of colors! I have a personal preference for white painted trim but I'm pretty sure that the mauve, apricot, green, and lilac were all the work of the Fanaros (POs). When you're painting something lilac, why stop at the trim???

From the first picture you can see that not only was the beadboard painted lilac, but also the bottom of the tub. And then in the second picture (mid demolition) you can see that the trim and top of the walls were painted lilac also. Yikes. It was like a purple nightmare. That purple still peaks through now and again, and it still makes me have bad dreams.