In which I actually deliver on my promises

Yes, that’s right, I actually remembered to take pictures. Amazing! So, now I can update you on the crazy weekend we had.

I finished putting poly on the trim for Prince Charming's office. And then, because we're crazy like that, we took down the stair railing, sanded it back to bare wood, re-stained it and are in the process of polying it too (it's the roundish thing next to the white thing - very technical, i know). I've got three coats of poly on it right now, and I'd like to get up to at least 5. Railings get awfully dirty, and quite abused.

We did some work on the irrigation system. I know, it doesn't look like much, but here's the deal: there used to be a big trench there, and we spent part of Saturday burying the pipe we'd laid / re-filling it with all the dirt we'd removed. I've been saving irrigation system pics for another post, but since this was such yucky work (it was hot and sunny), I thought I'd include it here.

While we’re on the sticky and gross idea… we spent two hours on Sunday morning cleaning the garage. I didn’t take a picture for you, because garage pictures are never pretty (and I forgot to take one), but it was a major effort. It is now conceivable that I could get my car inside by snowfall (which, of course, will involve more construction, or rather deconstruction – thinning down the ramp so my slightly wider Rav4 fits).

We worked on the spare bedroom too. If you need a refresher, it’s a dark, odd room where we’ve been keeping lots of boxes and random things (because the room is unused). Also, the server rack takes up a large corner of the room. It used to have my old twin bed in it, but in the great bed switch-up this month, it now contains a queen! And I spent part of my vacation organizing the linen closet, so now the room is all set up.

guest room2
This looks more like a place you'd like to stay, right? White bedding, down comforter and pillows (I'm working on pillow covers for those two square ones), art on the wall...

guest room1
We had a spare side table after the bed switch-up too, so it found a new home here. The chair came from the living room (actually, the chair came with the house).

As a side note…

knoll ricchio
Prince Charming loves having a chair by the front door, where the earlier one used to be. So, he found this replacement on CL. Cute, no? It's actually a designer chair that retails for over $1,000. Crazy, right? That red boucle on the seat just has to go, though.

Back to the decorating… our next stop was making the downstairs hallway also look a bit more lived in (instead of just storage area for ongoing projects, like the trim at the top). Pardon the picture quality – it’s pretty dark down there, and still a bit messy, and even with some artful cropping and adjusting the exposure, I could only do so much.

basement hallway2
Right outside the guest bedroom

I asked if it would be OK if I decorated the hallway with all of my coffee / French stuff. He said that was fine, and I went to unpack several boxes of “decorations” that we haven’t yet used. I sure came up with a lot (four pieces didn’t make it onto the walls, and there’s probably more I’m not remembering).

basement hallway1
The hallway (door in the middle is the bathroom, door at the end is the spare bedroom).

I had to do a little collage for these, because the bathroom is notoriously hard to photograph (exhibit 1, exhibit 2). Also, it’s kind of ugly. The sink area is painted bright blue, but the rest is white (and cracked and peeling). There are all these weird corners… but I digress. I wanted to make it look more like we actually used the bathroom on a regular basis.

bathroom art
Slight improvement. Great artwork for a bathroom, right? The calla lilies used to be above our dining table in the old house, and were a gift. I love them, but they need to be re-matted before we could use them anywhere else in the house. This works just fine.

After hanging the pictures and getting a bunch of boxes into storage (and out of the spare bedroom), we tackled the “library.”

This may not look like much, but trust me, it's a huge improvement.

We got rid of 7 grocery bags of books – sold them to Half Price Books, so someone else can use them.

Formerly, there were two overflowing boxes under the shelves of my books labeled "to read," and we found two more boxes in the spare bedroom. We had to get rid of some to fit everything in, obviously, but it was needed. This is about all the work we're going to do on the library until the family room remodel this winter, when these bookshelves will get replaced with something that is not dirty, dusty, crappy, raw plywood.

And, because that wasn’t enough, we started on a new project. Just some hints for you, though I’m sure you can figure it out. Full reveal… next Monday perhaps?

new project hint
Well, hello!

new project hint2
Lovely lines.

And lastly, an update on the garden (I sacrificed my body to get you these pictures – the mosquitoes are out like crazy in the mornings, since the sprinkler runs at 6).

082410 garden update
Squash! And a pumpkin (also, technically squash)! How cool is that? (Disclosure: these are the only two fruits from the huge squash plant monstrosity that we have going on.)

Whew! Now you know that I wasn’t joking when I said our weekend was crazy busy, and that we did a lot of work. The pace has to slow down soon, because classes are starting and I won’t have time for frivolous things like making our house look presentable to non-family members. 🙂 Seriously, vacuuming is a luxury during the semester.