March 6, 2007


Reminder to Joe: You are banned from the blog this week. Move along buddy. Lots of other sites to look at.

Our house is sort of crappy. When we moved in The house was total crap. It had been empty for some time, partly because it was crap, partly because it was next door to a building that had burned down (or mostly down, it was a danger and an eyesore, inhabited entirely by several large and bold families of skunks and racoons) and partly because the longer it was empty, the crappier it got. When we moved in, there was a hole in the kitchen wall that went clear to the outside. It was big enough for animals to come and go through...which they did. Only one room had been refinished, and the rest of this 120 year old heap was falling down. I did not buy it then because I saw the potential ( though it has turned out to have a little) but because a house with a racoon door in the kitchen, crumbling plaster and lathe and a view of a burned out hulk turned out to be the only house in my price range.

Over the years, much of the house has been fixed up. The wood printed linoleum in the living room was replaced by real wood, the crumbling walls were knocked down and drywalled - we got fancy pants upgrades, like electricity in every room and some insulation. (When we tore down our first wall we were stunned to discover that the only insulation in the walls was old newspapers. Great reading, but a poor force against the cold.) Something (even if it was just a good paint job and a new floor) has been done in every room, and it's not like now it's anything out of House Beautiful, but it isn't awful. I'm not ashamed of the house (much) anymore, and all the rooms are more or less ok. (When I clean them, which is a whole other issue.) Every room except ours. Once the racoon door was fixed, the master bedroom won the prize for the most craptastic room in the house.

I'm not sure when I stopped caring if that room was ok, but it might have been after the first time that I cleaned and organized it really well and realized that it was still crap. That nothing short of a major overhaul was going to fix it. Once I realized that it was a crap room, I started putting our crap there. It was a good match. Nobody saw the room except for Joe and I, so it didn't matter that it was crap.
Until now. Now, while Joe is gone over the next 5 days...I am going to de-crap our room. Refinish the floor (I have had the good sense to hire someone to do this -if he ever shows up. He's more than an hour late) repaint (that would be me) put up new drapes and fix things up (still me) so that we have a really nice room and it isn't the door you rush to close when people show up at your house.

With this goal in mind, I give you: The before pictures. This is the bedroom in it's natural resting state, except- you know. I cleaned up before I took the pictures. There's usually some knitting and abandoned coffee cups in there, not to mention the laundry.


I know what you're thinking. You're thinking "Gee Steph, don't be to hard on the room. It's not that crappy." You're wrong. See the floor?

It's the original pine, but it's been painted (many times, in many different colours, not one of which matches the purple baseboards) and you can't hardly keep it clean it's so rough. That's one of the good spots. Notice that there is no outlet cover on the outlet? We got electricity in this room, but no cover.


Here's more of the craptastic floor (accented by the orange-yellow walls and the purple trim ) and demonstrating the extraordinarily gross foam insulation that we used to try and keep the wind from blowing in from the outside through that crack. (Turns out that old newspaper just wasn't doing its job.) The room was crap, so we never trimmed it. (This is getting embarrassing.)

Here's a view of how things are now.


I've pulled out all the furniture I can move and cleaned up the floor as best I can. (I have left the mismatched shades in place for now, but they will be on their way out as soon as the floor is done.)


This is the view from the opposite side, showing the closet (which has no wasn't there when we moved in and it's a non-standard door size, so replacing it has always been too expensive) the crappy Ikea bookcase (which I'm going to try and replace with something less crappy, we'll see how the money holds up) and the purple door with it's cracked and peeling paint. (Please ignore the large green birth ball in the closet. Those things are hell to store.)
Step one? Floor, although really, absolutely anything I do in this room would be a huge improvement.

Posted by Stephanie at March 6, 2007 1:48 PM