"Say what you have to say, and not what you ought."
~ Henry David Thoreau

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Spring Has Sprung

The last two weeks have been full of home improvement projects around here. Maybe it's because I'm in a spring cleaning mood, wanting my house looking fresh and light after a dark winter. It's also because I realized the many projects I intended to get done over the winter still weren't finished and soon I'd be wanting to focus my time outside rather than inside. 

Mike had promised to help me with many of my "honey-do's" and told me to make him a list and put it on the fridge. The list went up, and nothing got checked off. He was much too busy running the bar and finishing a construction project. My patience wore thin and my nagging increased. Finally, he outsourced some of the items on the list, hiring someone to come in and finish painting my basement. I'm just as responsible for that job remaining unfinished for so long. I'm embarrassed to admit it's needed painting for  7 - 8 years now! I walk through that room every single day of my life, but because I don't use it for much of anything I didn't feel a great sense of urgency to finish it. It's an awkward space with doors on every wall but one, with a support beam in front of the only wall without a door. This makes furniture placement difficult. Mainly we use it for the three dog kennels and the  treadmill collecting dust in the corner. 

I decided to make better use of the space by turning it into a workout room, which prompted me to want it finished. I also moved my desk into the room, putting it in the open instead of in my mostly unused basement office room. Now that I use a laptop my old PC sat on the desk, taking up space and rarely used. The PC is gone now, and the desk is out where it can be used again to hold office supplies and the printer. Now the room is a combo office/workout space/pet room with three dogs AND a tortoise residing there. I'm not sure if the pets appreciate the freshly painted walls and trim, but I sure do! 

Next on the list was my main bathroom. It all started with changing out the light fixture, which was an awful bar light with exposed, round decorative bulbs. I've loathed it since I moved in 11 years ago. However, replacing it wasn't simple, as it required moving the electrical junction box so a new light could be centered above the mirror. That in turn would require patching up the hole it would leave in the wall. I finally got Mike to take on the project which turned into patching the hole along with several chipped areas on my 70+ year old lathe and plaster walls. This of course would require re-painting the room. I was ready for a new paint color anyway, as I was tired of the very dark green walls and wanted something lighter and less dated looking. 

Once the bathroom was painted I decided I wanted a shade on the window to filter the harsh winter light that comes in during the late afternoon. I searched online for the kind of shade I wanted in the fabric I wanted. In order to get one in the correct size I would have to custom order a shade, which would cost much more than I cared to spend. So, I turned to Pinterest, the do-it-yourselfer's best friend. I'd seen a roman shade made out of plain old plastic horizontal blinds. After a little trial and error, here's the finished product. I'm very happy with how it turned out and I'm only into it $30! 

Of course, the new paint and blinds made me want to do something about the tile around my bathtub. The decorative tiles just aren't my style. The tile is in very good condition though, and I don't want to spend the money to replace it right now. One day it occurred to me that I could probably paint the tile. Pinterest to the rescue again! I researched and found that using the right technique they could be painted. I decided I'd paint all the trim around the edge black and also paint the accent tiles black. This should still fit my vintage 1940's house and it will also add to my new neutral color scheme with black and white accents. I'll let you know how that project turns out as I haven't tackled it yet. I do have all the supplies and might start on it today. In case you're wondering why I have a mouse trap on my soap, I use it to stop my Labrador Sophie from eating the soap. It only took being snapped by it once to condition her to stay away. It's not set, but she doesn't know that.
Time is running out to finish my indoor projects. My yard is beckoning and my head is full of projects I want to accomplish in it this spring and summer, including relocating my square foot garden box, repainting my shed, painting my arbor gate, and building a compost bin. I also have quite a bit of spring clean up to do. For now, I'm enjoying my spring flowers that are in bloom, bringing  with them dreams of the warmer, sunnier days to come.


  1. We're in the middle of renovating our bathroom. We have that same horrible light fixture! We'll be replacing it once the walls are done. The second coat of "mud" is drying now. How can they do these projects on TV in such a short time? We're starting our second month!

  2. Beautiful flowers! I'm in a rush to get going this morning but just had to say hello. :-)

  3. Keicha, it is beautiful! I have to admit to feeling a little envious and a lot guilty because my spring homekeeping skills have been somewhat neglected! Painting, purging, cleaning to do. Your projects are amazing -- I love that roman shade and the tub. And I'll be you are eager to get out in your garden! Well, if nothing else, I'm motivated! And impressed!


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