A house is not necessarily a home

Yes, the blog is still somewhat broken.  I haven’t put much thought into how to make it pretty.  I’ve been too busy playing Super Mario Brothers Wii with Matt to even think about it. 

A discussion with Danielle on the way to our knitting group brought up some interesting thoughts about my house.  While Matt and I have lived here for 5 and a half years, it’s really hard for me to think of it as a home.  The recent work to the kitchen and living room has helped tremendously, yet it still feels cold and boring.  Sure, I refer to the house as Grand Central Station, but that doesn’t mean it cannot be a warm and inviting place.

I’m slowly coming up with ideas and projects to add character and warmth (expect to see that word a lot) to the house.  Something I find to be sorely lacking is texture.  Things like shaggy carpets, linen curtains, and glass vases.  Variety and character.  Handmade things that may not be perfect, but they’re mine and I love them. 

So, the first step for all of this is to start crafting!  I have plans to knit and sew, embroider and paint, plant and tile.  But, in keeping with this years theme (simplicity), everything I add to the house must be balanced by the removal of at least 2 similar items.  You can have character without having clutter. 

It’s about time to make this house a home.



Crap, I broke the blog.  Hopefully you all are reading this via your feed reader, so you can’t see the ugly.  Tech support is currently sleeping, so this may stay broken for a while.  


Happy new year (only 3 weeks late, not too bad for me)!  The past 6 months have been pretty busy, with the kitchen remodel turning out to be the project that never ends.  What is left to do includes a backsplash for the kitchen (we’re waiting on the tile to be in stock), base boards installed, and shelving next to the fireplace.  We have no deadline, so we’ve decided to take things slowly- better for our stress levels and wallets.

This is the time of year that people make resolutions in which they will break by February.  So, I’ve decided not so much make resolutions as to have a theme for the year.  This year is about simplicity.  My life has become too cluttered, and it’s time to simplify things.  
Step one:  simplify the house.  We have a house larger than we really need, and it’s filled with junk.  Most of said junk is mine.  I hold onto things for way too long.  I don’t need these things to remember.  So, throughout the year, we will be going through a major purge.  We (and when I say we, I mean me) will systematically go through each room of the house, and remove what is no longer needed.  Anything that is in good condition will be donated, anything left that can be recycled will be, and what’s leftover will be trashed.  
Step two: simplify our budget.  We (and again, when I say we, I mean me) have become wasteful in our spending.  There are so many things that I buy that I can just as easily make myself for a fraction of the price.  I think there needs to be a shift in our priorities.  
Things that I will be making as opposed to buying include: 
  • cleaning products
  • soap
  • anything I have the ability to sew
  • canned items (like salsas, soups, jams, jellies, pickles)
So, wish me luck!

Kitchen update

So, here’s what’s happened so far:

-The kitchen cabinets and countertops have been removed intact.  Yes, we desperately wanted to take a sledgehammer to them, but they’re going to a new home, and will get a nice new look to them.  🙂  We unintentionally are going green that way. 

-The subfloor in the kitchen was 5 LAYERS THICK.  There was ceramic tile, then plywood, then peel and stick laminate tiles, then plywood, then the original subfloor.  All but the bottom layer had to go.

-The carpet in the main living areas had to go as well.  Steam cleaning couldn’t get rid of the water damage from the leaky roof (that has since been fixed), so now is the best time to replace.  We’re going with a 5 inch engineered oak floor.  We ordered it last Sunday, and it arrived Friday.  It’s a little more red than we had anticipated, but that’s what you get when you order it sight unseen.  We got a good deal, and we like it. 

-Once we got the carpet up, we discovered a small amount of black mold around the fireplace.  We weren’t surprised, again, because of the previous water damage.  We picked up this stuff called Concrobium Mold Control at Home Depot- I highly recommend it!  It cleaned the mold up, and protects the wood from mold coming back.  The best part- it was bleach, ammonia, and VOC free.  **end commercial**

What is happening as I type:

-The boys are rerouting a small pipe in order to completely remove the soffit.  A good chunk of the drywall on the soffit is gone, and the rest will be down shortly.  A recessed light over the sink will be installed, as well as the drywall.  Electrical work may or may not be done today, depending on how long drywalling the soffit takes.

What needs to be done before the cabinets come in:

-All drywall repair
-All electrical
-Flooring installed

Since our anticipated 6 week wait for the cabinets was bumped up to 3, we’ve put everything that can wait to the backburner.  There have been a few minor snags, but overall things are going rather smoothly.  No one is too stressed, which is definitely a good thing.

For those of you who are on Flickr, I’ve updated my page with a ton of pictures.  Yes, I’m too lazy to post them here.  Not my friend on Flickr?  Just ask, and I’ll add you (unless I have no clue who the hell you are).