Friday, June 29, 2012

A Girl's Gotta Have Priorities

Yesterday, in exchange for beer (shoot, beer is *expensive! I think I've spent more at the liquor store this month than I have in the past ten years!), my neighbour and his son helped me move the last of my stuff.

Today mom helped me with the final cleaning, and then I turned in all of the keys except the building key I had to get back from my dad.

When I got back to the house, dad was there, and so then I could get that last key from him (turned in!), and pester him into talking to Shaw so that I could use the PVR my brother left me. (The registered owner had to call and do the transfer, so that they know it's not stolen.) An *hour* (and a second phone handset) later (what the heck were they *doing* over there?!?), and I now have a hooked-up TV and PVR. :)

I even shifted a few of the boxes, and so now can see the TV from the couch:
Of course, being summer, there's nothing on to watch... but if there was, I could watch it now.

Hmmm... I wonder where I put those taped shows I didn't have time to watch last month? (That would require hooking up the VCR too, but I'm pretty sure I know where all the pieces for that are.)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

And Great Rejoicing Was Heard Throughout The Land

From Poulins:
The pictures of the insect that you provided have been found to be: a Devils coach horse beetle.
These insects are a family member of rove beetles. They are a predatory insect, and often found outside. This insect is not a concern indoors. Usually when they are found indoors, it is just because they wandered in.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Weather (Not So) Genius

You'd think they'd coat the outdoor probe with something that wouldn't corrode, wouldn't you?

Moving Games

I've been playing moving games. Like "where in the kitchen should I put the crockpot", or "are there any storage places that the largest mixing bowl will fit"? Or "what box do you suppose has my sun hat" or "what box has my jacket"?

The obstacle course is also entertaining. See that rubbermaid tote with the white lid behind the green backpack?
Yeah, that one at the far side of Mount Boxes. Well, there was another rubbermaid tote under it that had something I needed... and so I got to arrange a parting of the boxes.

I'm currently sharing my dining room with a miniature rain forest.

There's a bit more to do at the apartment (one more evening of packing, one evening of moving, and then the final cleaning), and then I can get back to business here.

Can you guess what I'm doing this long weekend? :P

Sunday, June 24, 2012

The end is in sight!

Not much left at the apartment... I'll sure be glad when that is done!

My Mother's Poppies


Creepy Crawlie

I hate being greeted in a new place by creepy crawlies.
IMG_6067 copy
Especially in my bedroom, on my first night.

Anyone recognize my welcoming committee of one? I'm thinking "earwig", but it doesn't have the things on it's tail. If it helps to identify it, it moved fairly fast before I stepped on it. Looking at it from the top, it is long and skinny.

Towel Bar +1

Wanted a towel bar near the tub. Purchased and installed towel bar for the win.
(I didn't hit studs with the screws, so I'll want to replace them with toggle screws sometime, but the regular ones will do for now.)

Monday, June 18, 2012

Weekend Move Progress Update #6

*** Breaking News ***

Dad cleaned up some of his junk from the basement! There is now visible counter space in the downstairs "bathroom":
Not pretty counter space, but still, it used to be buried under a pile of junk. (I will need to use this space while renovating upstairs.)

Of course, it's still a cluttered goat trail to get *to* the bathroom:
(Off in the background there is another spot he de-cluttered... previously there was a lot more there.)

Easily amused: I like seeing people's reactions when I show them the floor of the shower stall:
Uncle's suggestion: build a platform of wooden slats to stand on while showering. (Good thing I have his workshop easily accessible!) The neighbour (who is a real estate agent) also mentioned there's paint meant for tubs that might do the trick. (It will never be pretty, but it might get at least as far as "sanitary". (Hopefully better than "when was your last tetanus shot?".)

Weekend Move Progress Update #5

Master bedroom, current colour scheme:
(It's dim lighting... the top of the walls and ceiling are white.) Trying to decide what colour I want this room. Bunnies are going. (I put them up, but they're rather old now.)

Master bedroom floor:
When they weren't doing other things on Saturday, I had them scraping the floor. The underlay is being stubborn. Next attempt: Fantastic and a scrubby pad. (Thank goodness for my respirator!) If that doesn't work, I'll get some of those stick-on vinyl tiles (hopefully they won't off-gas too much... I'm allergic to fresh vinyl) so that I have a surface that I can keep clean for now.

I'm pretty sure that floor we can see here was the original floor. (It's unfinished because the parts visible were under the original closet walls.) I'd like to take up the linoleum and refinish the floor. I investigated under a corner of the linoleum in the closet, and found this:
Curses. I strongly suspect that contains asbestos, given what I've read. That will complicate the removal of the linoleum.

Looking at the transition between the art room and hallway floors, it looks like the linoleum was put down in the hall too:
Odd how much higher the hallway floor is. Dad said it might be that a plywood subfloor was added over the old floor. Contemplating how best to find out what the layers on that floor are.

Hmmm... the kitchen floor is also higher than the dining room floor... wonder if they did the same thing there? I can examine the layers at the transition there quite easily.

Weekend Move Progress Update #4

Guest bedroom!
(Painting by my uncle.)

Art room!

(Closets are empty in both rooms.) Both floors are vacuumed / mopped. Most of the baseboards have been cleaned with a wet cloth (forgot inside the closets, and there's one more wall to do in the guest bedroom). Walls haven't been cleaned yet. Both will be repainted at some point, but not a high priority. Plants will move too (art room for sure, guest bedroom maybe). Oh, and I need to take the plastic off the windows so I can clean up the dead bugs. Ugh! (Hopefully if I repair the caulk then I won't need the plastic.)

Both will probably get cluttered again as I move my stuff in, but then hopefully will soon return to a usable state.

Weekend Move Progress Update #3

I was hoping this awesome little bookcase would be one of the things that dad was going to leave behind, but it's not:
Darn. Oh well.

Strange things (I'm pretty sure) my brother did:
I guess he wanted that shelf to be higher?

Weekend Move Progress Update #2

Dad's been going through the rooms on the second floor, and says what is left is either my brother's, or the house's. (I'll go through it and pull out any of his stuff that made it in, and sort the remainder into keep / donate / recycling / trash.) However, there's a bunch of stuff still left that I need to sort, and it's in the way.

In the blue room (to be art room):
(Plus a double bed that will be the guest bed, but the guest bedroom is a different room.)

Guest bedroom:
(No one is sure where that door is from... I think it was to the entrance to the room dad used as an office, but used to be unheated. It's thicker than the bedroom doors.)
Note: I forgot to take a photo of the contents of the closet at the back of that last photo. It's crammed with bags of stuff half way up.

Dad's office (one day will be a sun room):
(That hump shaped thing is actually a chair when flipped over... I tested it out, and it's surprisingly comfortable.)

In order to be able to get *my* stuff in (preferably in the room where it will end up, or at least out of the way), I wanted to move the "to sort" stuff out of the blue room and guest bedroom. A friend and her son returned Saturday afternoon and helped me do that.

Mission accomplished. Stuff out of upstairs rooms. They're now occupying the office, which can no longer be entered.
To do: sort my way back in!

The spare door is now in dad's office. Since I want to remove the carpet from there, I thought I'd rip up the section where the door will sit for now.
See that black stuff? It's a fine powder created from the carpet backing disintegrating. :P (Now vacuumed up.)

Weekend Move Progress Update #1

I have a bunch of photos, and this post will be less daunting if I break it up into pieces. So here's piece #1.

Friends came over on Friday morning, and after a flurry of activity, the following had made it from the apartment to the house:

Hide-a-bed couch, plus tons of boxes. (Many packed that morning! I am not going to be able to find anything until this is dealt with.)

Wide bookshelf plus paperbacks (unpacked because we ran out of boxes). Note: I'll be replacing that wallpaper with something a bit better suited for a home office. (This used to be the "toy room" when my brother and I were kids.)

Massive oak desk (plus a few more boxes in the background... containing books that didn't fit on the bookshelf).

Deep & wide bookshelf/storage shelf (cubby areas hold file folder boxes and rubbermaid totes.)

Aren't my friends awesome?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Found on Flickr: And the doilies ate my sofa..

And the doilies ate my sofa.. by amyla174

How cool is this?!? My hand-me-down couch has a few "flaws"... I definitely have to do this to hide them! :)

Tuesday, June 12, 2012


I just spent two hours scooching around on the floor pulling staples (¡underlay¡) and nails (tack strip), and scraping off the lumpiest bits of paint. I also took down posters (whoops, some of the tape pulled off paint or wallpaper) and removed the cardboard where the linoleum is missing. (Looks like the flooring under the linoleum is fir... not sure if it's meant as an underfloor, or if it was ever the actual floor.)

(Hmmm... forgot to hit "publish" last night...)

Sunday, June 10, 2012

House Update

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells and cockle shells,
And carpets all in a row.

...Wait, what?
Yep, you heard me. Carpets. (And underlay.)

Mom and I were over at the house again today. Mom washed walls (and venetian blinds), then attacked the carpets in the master bedroom.

After putting this week's bread on to bake (bread machine), I mostly sorted through stuff in what was once the "toy room". I also assisted a bit with mom's tasks: Fetching hammers, scissors, screwdrivers, etc; putting something underneath the dripping blinds; getting the end pieces off and back on; hauling the carpet and underlay out to the garden.

Basically, the carpet is going to pretend to be weed barrier until I have time to get out there and do some digging. Then I'll remove and toss a section at a time, so that I don't overwhelm the trash folks. Plus, I think we already gave them enough to deal with today:
There's actually not a lot *in* the trash cans, because most of the bags were too big. The pink one is empty, and one of the grey ones is only half full. I'm not sure if the other grey one is actually full, or if it just looks that way because the bag was too big to settle to the bottom. Plus, there's three full recycling bins, plus one large cardboard box of recycling.

So... how does stuff look now? Master bedroom:
The linoleum floor is not too bad, if you ignore the paint splotches. Or the places where it's missing altogether, because the large closet used to be two smaller closets, and there's no linoleum where the walls once were. Plus there's a big patch where the underlay glued itself to the linoleum, and I need to scrape it off:
Oh, and we haven't taken the staples out yet (the ones that were holding down the underlay.)

These are the shelves I was working on in the toy room:
I still need to sort through the bottom three shelves on the left, plus the top two in the middle. The rest contains things I'll keep (for now), plus a shoebox of pottery my brother and I made that I want to photograph before I toss. (I think I'll keep the funny looking frog I made in preschool, though.)

All this stuff is headed to the thrift store, woot!:
Two of the boxes are ones that dad filled. I had a quick check through to see if there was anything I wanted (I pulled out some puzzles to give to a friend) and then added more stuff to. The other three I filled today, and there's another started in the toy room.

Saturday, June 09, 2012


Now this is one heck of a frosted-up freezer:
(Mom and I had a peek in the basement fridge.) Dad had mentioned that he was cleaning out the basement fridge, but that it was turning out to be a bigger project than expected.

Friday, June 08, 2012

The Cleaning Battle Continues

Mom finished the kitchen cabinets. This dirty water is from cleaning just two:

I worked on the living room. I started by sweeping and mopping the floor (removing some screwed down pieces of wood that prevented the couch from shifting around), then washing the walls. Step one, swiffer the walls:
Whoa... that dirt was from a tiny section! (Note to self: swiffer walls regularly!)
Step two and three, clean with all-purpose cleaner solution, then rinse with plain water. Here's the wall above the fireplace after I've cleaned two-thirds of it:
Gee... can you see the difference? I sure can! The outline of the deer head is much less visible now too. :)

After I was done with two walls, I re-mopped the floor, since (a) I noticed that the first time (done with a swiffer wet mop) dried streaky, and (b) I was also wearing my (outdoor) shoes while washing the walls, because the stepladder had narrow steps. I decided to try my dry swiffer with a dampened cloth:
Urgh! I believe this calls for a *real* mop! (Third mopping to come tomorrow.)

I also sorted through some old stuff from the "mitten cabinet" in the kitchen (it was close to the back door). I was going to donate everything, but got suckered in by a few things from my past. This hat for one:
(What if a visiting little girl needs a hat to protect her head from the sun?) My grandma made these slippers, and I loved them:
How cute is this set that my grandma made?
(Hat with attached scarf, and critter mittens.)

It was pouring down rain, so I decided to take the ficus outside for a shower. However, taking the ficus outside caused it to pretty much stop raining, and I had to use the hose to finish the job. Oh well. While I was outside, I noticed that the storm windows on some of the original windows seem to be missing much of what holds the panes in:
I should probably do something about that sometime. (Preferably before they fall out in the middle of winter, leaving me with single-pane windows.) Two options: repair the storm windows, or replace the original windows with insulated ones. The second option should really be done eventually (especially since one of the windows is cracked), but the first option is a lot cheaper.

Since I now had a taller borrowed stepladder at the house (so I could wash the walls), I also put up the plant hook and chain outside, so that my dad's wife could have her decorative hook back:

Finally, I brought over the largest piece of art I own to cover the screw holes in the wall above the fireplace:
Not bad, but I think I actually need something bigger. (That painting looks *huge* in my apartment!)