23 December 2009
19 December 2009
I had two of these lovely glass panels, purchased from Ben Franklin Crafts, long before they closed. I still have one I need to paint, but I managed to finish this welcome sign with its art nouveau ladies before the glass painting phase wore off. Then it sat in a closet for a decade, just waiting for the perfect spot. Notice, too, that it is hung so as to not block Oliver's view. That's important, you know. And no, I did not buy this house because my welcome sign would look good next to the door, it just worked out that way!It was difficult to photograph from outside and still catch the details, so here it is from the inside looking out. Just imagine the image flipped.
16 December 2009
I finally got brackets for the bookshelves, and moved the second one from the dining room to its permanent location, flanking the tv. Since we don't have a fireplace in our humble bungalow, the tv goes in that spot. I've always felt it would be lovely to have built-ins along that wall, but I can't afford them. So for now these three pieces will have to stand in.
I have further plans for this room. It involves moving lots of furniture around the house. Also, I'm beginning to dream of a sofa. And a new recliner for Lewis. But that is down the road quite a bit.
14 December 2009
While I really do like this pattern, I don't think I will duplicate it. In fact, I think it will be a long time before I do another cross stitch. I'm too impatient and cross stitch take much longer than regular embroidery.I do have this tip, though, should anyone out there decide to do this pattern. I worked one color at a time. I did the stems first. With the flowers, I worked from the inside outward. I bought a washable fabric pen ages ago. When I started each new color I marked the center of the stitch. Then I would work all the stitches in that color before moving on to the next color. I did each pillowcase this way, so I didn't have to consult my chart every two seconds.
12 December 2009
So winter 2006-2007 was the first year we could keep the house at a consistent temperature. We kept the thermostat around 65 because it would get too hot on the second floor if we went any higher than that. We fiddled with the radiators and the thermostat a lot that year, trying to figure out what was comfortable.
The next winter, 2007-2008, we bumped it back a wee bit more, keeping it around 64. Not so bad. Now it is like a challenge. How low can we go?
So last winter, 2008-2009, I put the thermostat down to 62. We managed. We had a fairly mild winter, I bumped it up if I was sick. I cannot stand to be cold and sick. But mostly we kept it at 62.This year, I thought, okay 62 again. No biggie. Well. Think again. I'm so cold, I just can't take it. We've put the thermostat back up to 64. I'm not sure why, but those two degrees make all the difference.
I ordered a tank of Fuel in mid-October, when I checked last week we had just above half a tank left. After the blustery weather we've had in the last couple of days (temps in the low 20s, wind gusts, wind chill in the single digits) I'm afraid to check the tank level again. I know it is going to be bad news.
The temperatures can be in the single digits and the house will remain warm (-ish). But if it is windy, forget it. The boiler will just run and run, trying to keep up. It was so drafty on the second floor last night, which is better insulated than the first floor, that I crawled up to the attic to make sure the windows hadn't blown open. It has been known to happen when we have high winds. I was very surprised to find them still closed.
This whole house needs better insulation, I know. When we had walls torn open, insulation was replaced, but it is just here and there. We didn't understand that the blown-in insulation wasn't really doing anything at all. Now the long-term plan is to insulate from the outside in, when we re-do the siding. Which we don't have money for. Because we can't save any. Because we are paying twice as much as we should to heat and cool the house. What a vicious cycle.
11 December 2009
The salesman said he could make a photocopy of the sale sign on the item, that had a picture, measurements, and sale info. When he came back he said he had good news and bad news. The bad news was the floor model was their last one and they wouldn't be getting any more. The good news was that his manager said I could have the floor model for $100 if I took it that night.
So I impulsively said yes, I'll take it. That may have been a line, just to sell something that evening. I'm sure they could have come down even further and made profit, but I'm not much of a haggler, so I'm pleased with my purchase.
Shh, just don't tell my mom. She doesn't know I bought something this expensive for myself right before Christmas. I want to put it into place and hopefully she won't notice for a while. When she does, I'll be able to say, "that? It has been there for ages."
10 December 2009
Can you see any improvement at all? I know there is still a lot there, but check out that carpet. So much more visible than when I began this decluttering a few weeks ago.So, there is a bin on top of the tall dresser that has all my favourite stuffed animals from childhood. I want to find a better storage solution for them, but I'm not sure what would be best.
I have an old set of rabbit ears tv antennae there. I guess there is no need for them any longer, so I should just throw them out. The box it the corner is the new bedding. The rack in front of the window is clothes I'm wearing again. The green laundry basket next to that is more old clothes I need to go through.
The rest of that pile along the back wall is office supplies and other things that have homes. I just need put that stuff where it belongs. There is a big stack of empty bins, an old metal doll's high chair I need to find a box for, then stow it in the cubby. The pile of boxes in the middle are things I want to keep, but don't really have homes for yet. The bath chair needs a new home, maybe in the basement? I still have one box of papers to go through, then there are several shoe boxes that are sorted by year. Not the best filing system, I know, but better than the stacks Jessica and I went through on Sunday. There are two boxes of lotions and potions that I either found in the linen closet or cleared off the dresser of doom, which still doesn't look any better: I have two boxes of stuff to give away to specific people, and two boxes for donation. There were three until Jessica went through them. She found more stuff she could use, or knew someone who could. Fantastic!
Hopefully I'll have more progress to report really soon. I'm getting really close to my self-imposed deadline of the 18th. I know there is no way we will get the room painted, and we have decided to wait on the mattress because I just can't spend that kind of money right now. But at least we would have a clean, empty room for Kelly and James to stay in. As long as Lewis can find the air mattress, that is...
06 December 2009
05 December 2009
04 December 2009
I'm rethinking my paint plan. I was going to match the comforter and go two tints lighter, but now I'm thinking match the color and go a bit more vibrant. I have a feeling the comforter will reflect more of the color I want if it is on the walls. Plus it will draw that color out of the curtains.
03 December 2009
Here's the problem I was running into: many of the remaining boxes in the back bedroom have office supplies in them. Tons of little stuff with no home. So, I started to get the side bedroom organized to make homes for all the office supplies I will be running into. This way I don't just move the debris from one room to the other. Ultimately, I mean. 'Cause that's actually what ended up happening to some of the junk from the side bedroom.
01 December 2009
As I've become such a fan of variegated floss, I did two of the kittens with variegated dark grey, variegated tans (think Oliver-colored), and the third in solid soft grey. I didn't write the color numbers down, and when I went back through my floss, I couldn't tell which I had used.
30 November 2009
The dreaded dresser surface, the give away pile and the empty boxes pile:
More happened on Sunday, hopefully pictures tomorrow.
23 November 2009
The dreaded dresser surface, full of lotions, potion, trinkets and baubbles.
21 November 2009
20 November 2009
I also gave the sheets some more thought. I could always embroider some seashells, starfish and sand dollars on the hems of two or three sets of pillowcases. A bit of work, yes, but we rarely use the top sheet anyway, so I could just buy the pieces I want in a solid color, save a few dollars, and I can match embroidery thread exactly to my color choice.
19 November 2009
The bungalow is generously sized, but the back bedroom is the only one big enough for a king bed and furniture.
We know what kind of mattress we want, another foam mattress like the one in the front bedroom. That's a full size, and it was expensive. The king size will be twice as much. Yikes. But we really need it. Neither of us is happy with the current sleeping situation. It must change and soon.
So, here is today's idea:
The comforter and curtains are of course from JCPenney. The comforter set is on clearance, and only $70 for the king. The curtains (84"length) are $35 per panel x 4 = $140. Unless I can get away with the 72". Then it will be $30 per panel, $120 total. Not sure. Will have to measure. The ceiling is pretty low in that part of the room because it is an enclosed sleeping porch (sad).
There are a couple of other things to consider, too. I don't need-need the curtains, I have a set that will work, at least for now. But I'm in love with the mod circles. And the dressers in that room are painted white, mid-century, curved front, with tapered feet. So, I'm thinking the room should have a mod feel.
Then I remembered these beautiful sand dollar print sheets from the L.L.Bean catalog. They've been in the catalog for years, and I've always wished I had a place for them. Now I might, but guess what? They are discontinued. Figures. I think if I could find something like that, I could have a hint of beach. Add one or two other touches, and that's it. I don't want to overdo it and have it look like one of the Golden Girls' bedrooms!
So, just picture it: sandy color carpet (already there), crisp white trim (only room with painted trim), that gorgeous sea-blue-green bedding, crisp white mod dressers, and those mod circles curtains against slightly lighter sea-blue-green walls.
30 October 2009
I used DMC floss for these, but I have no idea what colors I used because I didn't write them down. Besides, I wouldn't use that particular color combo again, so I guess it doesn't much matter.