- Painted and primed every wall except the beadboard in the kitchen (which was removed and stored due to the kitchen renovation) and the three upstairs closets. The parlor was wallpapered (I hired someone after a failed attempt due to very, very crooked walls).
- Ripped up rugs that were in every room except the bathroom, kitchen, parlor and office.
- Patched holes, and refinished (hired) the wood floors on the first floor.
- New light fixtures in the parlor, dining room, office, upstairs hallway, kitchen and bathroom.
- New matching switch plates throughout except for a pretty one in the dining room that I had in my old condominium (and the kitchen now has different ones due to the renovation).
- Bought matching lace valances and curtains for the first floor except the dining room and bathroom, which have valances from my mother). Also, bought white tab-top insulated curtains for the first floor (except the bathroom) for the winter.
- Removed plywood kitchen backsplash, patched, primed and painted the walls, and affixed four decorative tiles.
- Bought two new couches, four area rugs, two new chairs, a double bed, got a new-to-me desk from a friend, and took two end tables and a nightstand from my mother. I also picked up a discarded nightstand off the sidewalk one street over and an end table my brother had thrown away.
- Repurposed a cabinet from the basement for the kitchen as extra counter space and storage (as I only had about nine inches of counter).
- Bought a new refrigerator when the original one started leaking. Had to take down two upper cabinets due to it being one-quarter inch too high. Laid one cabinet on bricks next to my cooktop, then put the other one on top, with bricks separating them, for yet more counter space. Tacky, but useful.
- Re-caulked the bathtub and fixed the leaking bathtub faucet by replacing a tiny part.
- Sewer man removed the yard sewer vent and replaced the curved underground pipe with straight in order to stop clogging, which caused my laundry sink to overflow with raw sewage in the basement my first winter.
- Installed (with my brother-in-law) an arbor for the two wisteria vines in the front yard.
- Removed (with my sister) weird beams overhead on the deck.
- Extended the porch garden to line up with the front border.
- Planted a cottage garden in the strip below the stone wall in the front side yard.
- Transplanted daffodils, crocus, a peony and hostas.
- Planted a huge garden out back. Removed invasive Japanese knotweed all over the back yard, and creeping into the sides.
- Installed a mowing strip of bricks (found here and from my mom) in the back garden. Used pavers found here for edging in the cottage garden.
- Re-organized the shed and moved and re-installed brackets.
- Dug up goofy edging in front border and porch garden. Reinstalled it on its side in the porch garden to make a mowing strip.
- Bought a reel mower, pots, birdbaths, birdhouse, bird feeder, weedwacker and various garden tools. Also got some from my mom.
- Removed various weird disconnected wiring for music, telephones, security system, and broken doorbell.
- Removed satellite dish with my brother-in-law's help.
- My brother-in-law installed a new front outdoor faucet after the old one wouldn't stop leaking. Had to remove front of plywood enclosure to the coal bin in the basement for access.
- Dismantled previous owner's homemade desk in the office, accordion-pleated door in the office closet, and TV stand in the master bedroom. Moved his trellis from the front of the house to the side of the shed. Installed lattice panels (found in the shed) on the shed.
What I have left to do:
- Hire someone to build steps off the deck.
- Fix my porch (scrape, sand, prime, paint, new roof, replace three rotted boards and rotted front piece on apron, and figure out how much else needs to be replaced). Install a new light fixture.
- Hire someone to restore original railings and balustrade on the porch? I'm not sure I could do this myself.
- Wash, prime and paint all ceilings except bathroom and kitchen. Remove sprayed-on stuff in the hallway and dining room.
- Finish removing asbestos shingles from house above the porch, a small portion above the deck, and the west side.
- Finish painting the house--above the porch, small section next to the deck, very small section above the deck, and both sides.
- Paint or stain the deck.
- Paint all exterior doors.
- Replace all exterior storm doors.
- Install wooden shutters and shutter dogs on the front six windows.
- Scrape, sand, prime and paint all interior trim, windows and doors (except the kitchen which hopefully will be done soon).
- Replace the ugly wrought iron stair rail upstairs.
- Install white oak upstairs?
- Hire someone to build a bathroom upstairs.
- Paint stairs Rockport Gray.
- Replace ugly banister.
- Repaint bathroom, guest room, office, dining room, hallway and master bedroom.
- Finish up kitchen painting.
My current living room is 1/2 of a double parlor. The picture above shows the space being used as a dining room (the yellow room), as it was when I first moved in. At that time I used the other half of the parlor as my formal room, with rose toile wallpaper, feminine decor and a chandelier. Now it's basically the TV room. Technically it would have been the room the family used as its informal parlor, but I had to go and make it all fancy! Dumb, but what did I know? Now I feel like the ceiling fan which is now in the dining room, which previously functioned as my living room, should be in the parlor. The chandelier should go in the dining room, or even living room. The dining room gets really hot, though. But I only use it for entertaining anyway. Otherwise I'm eating in front of the TV like every other person who lives alone.
Are you following all this?
So of course now I'm obsessed with repainting the dining room, and find all my other color schemes unacceptable. I was going to change everything to a more modern, neutral space but realized I really love my double parlor colors of rose and yellow.
I was going to paint the "new" dining room (the green painted room adjacent to the stairs, above) Martha Stewart Malted and the living room Dune, but I just couldn't let go of my cool color palette. So I decided to just tone done the palette a little with gray. I realized sage green would be appropriate for a dining room and it would coordinate with my new kitchen color (Martha Stewart Milk Pail). It's also the color I had in my living room and kitchen in my condominium, and I loved it. I think I'm going with Salisbury Green for the dining room. If I get around to repainting the living room it'll be Weston Flax (which I have on the exterior and LOVE) or Hawthorne Yellow. I'll probably repaint the office Hollingsworth Green to coordinate with the dining room; it would also look good with the rose toile wallpaper, which I still love and don't want to change yet.
Here's the dining room currently, except I turned the table 90 degrees for a better use of space. I can't stand that bedroom-y, pale green (Sherwin Williams Cucumber) for a dining room. I had toyed with the idea of getting darker furniture and a round table but I still like my butcher block trestle table and it was a housewarming gift from my parents when I bought my condo.