Clearing Off the Shelves: Library Edition

Sometimes, even the library goes through its shelves and gets rid of things that haven’t been used in forever.  Today I get to do some of that.  It isn’t quite as fun as getting rid of things I don’t need at home, but it’s pretty awesome for different reasons.

My favorite part of the job is seeing some of the ridiculous VHS covers from the past.  The most troublesome part is finding things I really want to keep for myself.  I mean, I could buy them at the library book sale when they’ve been properly withdrawn from the library.  But then I would be just be shuffling old, unneeded stuff from one place to another.  Not the goal of the project.

These are some of the funnies from today’s search:

    • Buns of Steel… haven’t seen this one in a while.
      photo from yesteryearsgoodies.ecrater.com

      photo from yesteryearsgoodies.ecrater.com

    • Quick Dog Training with Barbara Woodhouse, who looks like an ideal dog trainer to me.

photo from amazon.co.uk

photo from amazon.co.uk

And these are some of the favorites I’m struggling not to take home:

    • The Way to Cook with Julia Child–we’re talking the entire collection.  “Oh my!”  (Must be read in Julia Child voice.)
      photo from ebay.com

      photo from recipeboy.com

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      photo from ebay.com

    • Gardens of the World with Audrey Hepburn, which I didn’t even know was a thing until today.
      photo from youbeauty.com

      photo from youbeauty.com

      photo from imdb.com

      photo from imdb.com

Projects and More Projects

Do you know what projects in progress mean?  Well, they mean an opportunity for another layer of projects in the near future.  Because Scott is making excellent progress with the floors right now, it leaves some painting opportunities open to me.  First on that list will be finishing the living room and hallway painting I’m kind of halfway through.  That’s top priority.

But after that, I’m thinking through a few more fun projects:

1) The fireplace.  Right now, it’s a nice, simple white.  Nothing terrible at all.  The only glitch is that the bricks inside the mantle are a slightly different shade of white than the wood mantle.  Not really a problem, but if I get around to it, I’m considering something like these:

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photo from merciblahblah.com

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photo from roomenvy.co.uk

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photo from marsilverdesign.com

The last option is the most likely because it’s the same color (more or less) as the olive green tile in our kitchen, which is now in the same room as the fireplace.  The blue matches our dining room chairs.  The yellow would be an odd-ball choice, but I still like it.

2) If I get really really motivated, I might just rip up the carpet on the stairs and do something like one of these on the stairs:

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photo from HGTV.com

photo from Elle Decor

photo from Elle Decor

Although I will admit that the minty green in that last one might not be manly enough for the other half of the household.  We could go with some other dark-ish color with white treads. 

This is definitely a case of my eyes being bigger than my project time available.  I do have good intentions.  And those floors are looking mighty nice.

Actual Progress and Imagined

Scott was hard at work today.  In addition to lots of computer schtuff, he got a start on the fun part of the floor project.  Fun might be a relative term when you’re talking about floor installation, but I personally think the addition of good flooring is way more exciting than ripping out layers of linoleum.  Check out that fireplace edge that’s all fancy-like and professional:

unnamed

Oooh, aaah.

And me?  Well, I made imaginary progress.  I decided that if we stay in this house through August, I’m going to put up some outdoor lights.  Like these people except for nothing like these people (sans brick wall, stone pavers, etc.):

photo from centsationalgirl.com

photo from centsationalgirl.com

Still, it’ll look bright and cheerful like that. Same theory.  And you know what?  Imaginary progress is still a little bit satisfying.

Good Light

Honestly, Monday and Tuesday haven’t been the best Monday and Tuesday in the world.  Thank goodness, when I came home today, it was sunny and quiet, and we’ll call that good enough.

sunshine

And in case you don’t know what dill flowers look like, this is what dill flowers look like:

dill

You could see it as bad that our dill has flowered (since that means it thinks it’s time to die off for the season), but I’m going to choose to enjoy the flowers.

Monday is for Daydreams

Sometimes the best recommendation for a Monday is to daydream (in responsible doses that make your day better while letting you get something done in the real world… Surgeon General’s work-time warning).  Today, I’m thinking about future travel.  National Geographic is such an enabler, too.

photo by Dick Pitini and from the National Geographic website

photo by Dick Pitini and from the National Geographic website

The Dolomites?  Sure! 

I love what a combination of peaceful little hillsides and dramatic rocky mountains that is.  Wow.  I never would have put the bottom and top halves of that picture together if I hadn’t seen it here.

Second Half of the Project: Guest Bathroom

When we bought our house nearly a year ago, we assumed it would be a many year project to slowly but surely update the house.  We started with the kitchen, moved recently into the main living area, and we figured we’d get to the bathrooms later.  Much later.

But events have conspired that mean we may or may not be living here for years and years.  Which means that we may or may not be selling our fixer-upper bathrooms to someone else before they’re fixed up.  Oh no!

So the goal of yesterday’s project was to inject the best of the three bathrooms with some love and time so that it would be “done.”  If we stay in the house for ten years, it’ll probably get a new light fixture and a sink, maybe even a different countertop and backsplash.  But for now, it’s done. 

The goal within the goal was to get to that point while spending as few dollars as possible.  I decided that the paint color and the chipped mirror were really the worst features of the bathroom, so they are what I tackled. 

before

before

after

after

art mirrorsI’m a little bit unsure about the circle mirrors, but I’ll explain why I bought them.  There were three choices I liked at Target–a square mirror with a country-ish frame (which I maybe should have gone with), a set of 6 square mirrors that you’re supposed to hang artfully yet precisely to make a larger grid somewhat like this, and the circles.  I liked the squares for their look of a larger mirror, but I know myself.  No way am I going to be able to hang six mirrors perfectly without measuring anything.  I went with the round mirrors because they allowed me to hang the mirror without measuring.  Hey, at least I know my own limitations, measuring included.

I used a paint chip from Benjamin Moore–Palladiain Blue.  I got the paint from Lowes because it was cheaper ($28 for a gallon) and open when I wanted to buy paint.  Both very important factors.  And I bought the mirrors at Target for $20.  And that’s all, folks.

It amazes me how much this room feels like an actual room now instead of a random dumping ground for towels.  Maybe it’s all in my head, but it really felt different last night.  I think it has to do with the care put into putting it together.  Sigh.  A job well and cheaply done.

 

First Half of the Project: Guest Bathroom

While some people struggle with finishing house projects, I really fail with the first step. Today, I sat on the couch for hours while I “worked up the energy” to paint the bathroom. Yup. I don’t struggle to start 20 books at the same time, but starting a house project is too much commitment for me.

Fortunately, I made it through the fear of commitment today, and the bathroom has two fresh coats of paint to show for it. Success! But before we get to the fun “after” pictures, I need to let said paint dry and put art on the walls and clean, clean, clean. In the meantime, let me highlight some of the bathroom’s nicest “before” features.

20140718-203749.jpgThat’s the chipped mirror.  It shouldn’t bother me, but it looks so sad.  Plus, I’m pretty clumsy, so sharp objects anywhere in the house are a danger to my personal health.  Time to get rid of that mirror.

This lovely spot of not paint (below) is my favorite “before” feature.  It’s not like it was all that hidden or inconspicuous.  I’m unsure what the previous painter was thinking.  “Oh, it’s the same shape as the toilet.  It’ll blend right in.”  Maybe?
20140718-203806.jpg As you can tell, I had some degree of chuckling disdain for this spot. Until I tried to paint it. I immediately felt less smug and mildly embarrassed/terrified that I would have to leave a white spot behind the toilet, too. I also had a slightly smushed arm covered in paint from trying to reach the spot. But thank goodness, I figured out how to smear fresh paint back there. It wasn’t neat, but it was effective. Whew. I can judge the previous painter again. It was close.