Monday, April 30, 2012

So Close!

All that is left to Frederick is the ground that he walks on.  :-)  Oh and the date and my initials.  I think this will be my first finish of the year.  I sure hope it happens this week!  I'd love to start on something different.  I have a stack of around 10 WIPs that I want to finish before I start something totally new and I have a ton of wool kits that I also want to start.  But none of that can happen until I finish up this bird. 

Nothing big happening at the house.  Over the weekend I worked at a ton of little things.  I installed the closet organizer in my bedroom.  That took the better part of Saturday.  I was so careful in what I picked out but I still have too many clothes that need to be in there for the size of the closet.  That's the problem with these 50 year old houses - never enough closet space!  I think I need to look into buying a chest of drawers for the bedroom.  I only own a dresser with a mirror.  I did have a plan years and years ago to buy more to the set but Ethan Allen where I purchased my furniture discontinued the line I was buying.  Now I can't find anything to match it.  So I guess I need to start to look for something that complements it rather than matches it.  I still need to purchase the new doorknobs for the door and the bathroom door and paint my switch plate covers - maybe next weekend.  I also started working on my lawns. The front lawn is about 50% weeds so put down a weedkiller and I'll de-thatch and put down seed in a couple of weeks.  The backyard is also mostly weeds but because of the dogs I can't put down any chemicals.  So I spent around three hours pulling dandelions - I'm about 25% done with that job.  I'll be at it all summer for sure!  There are also a ton of old flower beds all on the perimeter of the backyard.  I can't stand such regulated plantings and three of the four hardly had anything left in them so I pulled two out.  It was pretty easy - I just had to pick up the bricks outlining the beds and turn them over and plant new grass seed.  At this point I'd rather mow them than find money to replant them. 

So again my weekend wasn't very restful.  I wonder if that will ever happen again?  A weekend where I don't have a ton of work to do.  Maybe someday.  :-)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

a tiny quilt

I got a little more finished on Frederick.  I've been working from home the past couple of days so I haven't been stitching but this one is getting close.  

I Sunday I didn't feel like stitching and I haven't started my next big project yet so I pieced this little quilt.  It's only 11 inches by 11 inches.  I love how it turned out.  I plan on buying a little quilt rack to hang it on.  I'll machine quilt it with an overall stipple pattern.  Maybe over the coming weekend.
I had my new furnace and HVAC system installed yesterday and today.  I asked that they only remove the equipment from my utility room yesterday so I could do a little work on the room.  This is what I started with.
And this is what I did.  I put down a new sub floor and a laminate floor plus the baseboard trim.  It will be a lot easier to clean now. 
It's chilly in the house - a cold morning and they are still here working on the furnace - come on heat!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

border - check!

I finished up the border on Frederick yesterday. I don't know about you but when I finished the boarder of a piece I always feel like I've made real progress. Not much left now!

On the house front - new HVAC system coming on Monday! Yeah!

Monday, April 16, 2012

The room is done and so am I :-)

Frederick is coming along nicely now that I'm stitching to and from work. It helps that is finally light in the mornings and I don't seem to get as sleepy on the train. A good solid week of rides and one or two nights I could have this one put to bed. That would be sweet.

On Saturday I finished up most of my bedroom and moved in! I started this project the last weekend in February with the clearing of the room. It's been hard work but I love how it finished up. There are some details outstanding. I still need to purchase a closet organizer and install it. I'm hoping I have the cash for that next week. All the light switches and plugs need covers and those will need to be painted because I like them to match the wall color. I ordered a rug last week and it should be in next week and I need to decorate the walls. It's pretty empty right now. I found a nice tv cabinet that's fits the style of my furniture really well and I'll be looking to purchase that as soon as the rug is paid for. Then of course I need to start working on the bathroom - it was also gutted and so far it's only had it's window trimmed and the room painted. I have to purchase everything from flooring to wainscoting to toilet and sink.

My little reading spot. I want to purchase an electrified oil lamp for the side table and I need some sort of foot stool if I want to really get comfy.

My king size bed fits perfect and I have lots of flexibility in the room to change things around as I see fit. That's Isibeal climbing on the bed. Even though she can totally just jump on the bed, she has always used the stairs I have for the pugs. :-) She goes down that way too. :-) I need to find an option of that ugly black light I have clamped to the headboard but I'm not sure what yet.

Just a few minutes later - this is why I don't bother to make my bed most days. Isebeal likes to make a nest of whatever quilt on have on the bed. :-)

Since I finished up most of the work on Saturday, on Sunday I took the four dogs to the local off-leash dog park for a nice three mile romp. It's the most fun place in the world (at least from the packs perspective). I can't keep Isebeal out of the water but she has so much fun I don't even try. In fact the pugs think she is having so much fun they usually join her when it's warmer. It's funny to see the lab in the water with two pugs trailing behind her (yes only two - Aoife won't go near the water unless I drop her in). Here is Isebeal fetching her ball.

She doesn't get just a little damp - it's full on wet. She even holds her breath to dunk her head under the water.

Hopefully this will be the start of more regular visits to the park. I start on the total re-do of my HVAC system I'm hoping by the end of the week but my participation in that should be limited to the new sub floor floor and tile I want to put down before the new furnace and water heater goes in. Then a couple of weeks off before more full blown home improvement. Oh I'll still putter (still have all those things to finish in my bedroom and bath) but I need a break. Both me and my pocketbook are really tired. :-) Then I'll start work on my sewing room and outside deck! The sewing room is going to get the same treatment as my bedroom and a bit more as money allows starting with installing the new hardwood floor and replacing all the trim work. Plus I'm looking to do some built ins with a window seat along one of the walls. It only takes time and money. :-)

Thursday, April 12, 2012


I've actually found some time over the past few days to do a little stitching. I'm finding that progress is not only slow on this front but also on my bedroom. The task of re-painting the entire room is turning out to be a major buzz kill and I haven't taken a step in the room in three days so it's doubtful it will be ready to move into this weekend. And I still don't have the light fixtures installed as I can't find anyone to help me (all capable family members too busy right now) and I can't afford an electrician to come in this week to do it. sigh.

In what might turn out to be another stupid move on my part (only time will tell), I signed up for the Cabinet of Curiosities class over at Thistle Threads. I missed the first sign up as it was around the Thanksgiving/Christmas time frame and I just couldn't swing the down payment. I did add myself to the wait list a month or so ago and Tracey had a couple of openings as well as the ability to expand the class to 25 more people. I'm so worried that I don't have the skill to pull something like this off. And it's a multi year (three in total I think) and huge financial obligation to boot. But I so want to do it! So I scrapped up the money required to join and I'm in. I already know I'm interested in the more expensive casket - the double - way more than the flat top version. That also means an extra 18 month class. So currently if I want to complete this the way it should be I'm already in for $7,000 or so. And this is before I purchase all the little accessories that make is really super cool and purchase extra supplies. That's how much I'm spending on my furnace. Or a butt load of windows. And the question still needs to be asked, do I have the skill to pull it off? I'm still struggling to complete the Floral Glove I started two years ago.

Only time will tell. :-)

edited later to add: $7,000 is a bit high, I figured it again and it is around $2,400 for the two 18 month classes (which include most of the items needed to construct the casket, lots of silks and at least five projects to help teach what needed to stitch the parts of the casket properly) and $3,000 -/+ 20% for the casket itself. So that's $6,000 for the two classes and the casket if the casket comes in at the high end. But there will be added goodies that are being commissioned to go inside the casket. That will add up. :-) I want it all. :-)

Monday, April 09, 2012

still at it!

Believe it or not, I'm still working on my bedroom. I thought for sure I'd be in last weekend. But the trim work took my brother 12 hours to complete on Friday and then I spent the rest of the weekend doing the caulking and wood putty work. I still have a butt load left as I took off a few hours to hang out with family yesterday. And now I still have to repaint. My brother didn't notice that there was a right side and a wrong side to some of the trim pieces that I had painted at night during the work week and put them on primed side out. Grrr. I even told him to be careful but he said he never heard me. :-) Men! So now not only do I need to paint over the putty holes but I need to paint about a quarter of the trim totally again from the start. But I love how it turned out. So maybe this weekend I can move in. After I'm done with the painting I just need the lights installed in the ceiling and I still need to buy some window shades. Not sure yet what I want and they need to be cheap because I've spent a load on the room and I'm out of money.

I didn't have a work surface for my brother to put his miter saw on so we improvised. That's Isabelle's crate with a closet door over it. Worked great!

Speaking of Isabelle, she hated all the noise my brother was making and sat outside all day. Finally she just curled up in a ball and went to sleep. The pugs on the other hand, didn't care a bit about the noise and dust and kept coming in to visit. I finally had to kick them out of the room because they were so underfoot.

Enjoy the week!

Monday, April 02, 2012

almost move in time

I've been super busy! My drywaller came back last Monday and was finished up with the room last Wednesday. That put me pretty much under the gun as my brother said he only had Thursday to help with my floor. So I got home from work on Wednesday and painted the ceiling. I figured I could do the walls over the weekend after the floor was down. The floor was a tough one and my brother has experience with every sort of floor. He expected to be done by lunchtime. It was lunchtime before we started to really make progress. But I think all the hard work was so worth it! I LOVE my new floor and I can't wait to start on the next room.

As stated above, I painted the walls on Saturday. This is the first room I'm not 100% happy with. I really like the top color but I'm very unsure about the bottom color. And I can't put my finger on why I don't like it. This is a crappy photo but you get the drift. I'm putting in a chair rail in a cream color and I won't make my mind up about the bottom color until I'm finished with all the trim.
This is the style of trim I have picked out for the entire house. Only the top piece of moulding is sorta expensive at $3.19 a foot. Everything else is just primed pine stock. I'm going to do a crown moulding but I'm looking for a very simple one in the new plastics / foams they have out. My walls are so out of plumb and having something very flexible will make that job go so much easier.

Lastly I painted the half bath that is attached to the master. I went with a spa sort of color. I'm going to put in wainscoting to the bottom of the window so there won't be much of the aqua showing when it's all said and done. But before I do that I have to put down the new tile floor and buy the pedestal sink so I can get that measured before I do the wainscoting. I'll work on this bit by bit until summer. I think it will look great with cream trims and aqua color.

Since I felt like I wasn't working hard enough I put into process my new furnace, A/C unit and all new duct work for the system. I'll just move in the bedroom and clean everything up and I'll start making messes again. The room the furnace is in needs work. The subfloor has to be replaced and it still needs to be painted behind where the furnace is located as I couldn't get to it last summer. So I'm hoping my HVAC guy will pull the unit on a Friday and not come back until Monday. That will give me the entire weekend to fix the floor, put down a ceramic tile and paint it.

Tired yet? :-)

While there are still a million and one things I want to do this year on the house and yard, I'm thinking I'm done with the big ticket items for the year. I'd love to find the money to waterproof and insulate my crawlspace but that's another $4,000. That will be tough to find. But my floors were so cold over the winter I hate to go another with cold feet. The new furnace will help as I'll be able to afford to heat the place warmer next year (my current furnace is running at about 40% efficiency) because the new one is 93% efficient. That will be sweet. But it would be sweet to have warm feet also. ;-)