Nath Knits

and should probably be doing something else.

House makeover

3 Comments

Less than a week left until we go.  Pretty much done with packing.  Still cleaning.  Still trying to eat all the food.  Trying to keep cool.  Next sabbatical, we should leave in the winter.

I promised pictures.  And while it has been beautifully sunny out, it was a humid 32 degrees today, so I had the blinds tightly drawn to keep those evil photons outside.  My green sweater, which is excitingly close to being done looks like this in my dark living room.

I actually finished it since I took that picture and started this post.  But the thought of putting it on makes me feel faint, so it’ll have to wait until the weekend for finished pictures.  It turned out pretty well, I think.

But, despite this, I still have pictures for you!  I realized I never posted my house makeover pictures.  We had the house insulated late this spring, which meant taking off the existing aluminium siding and whatever was behind it, blowing expanding foam, covering that with plywood, covering that with a vapour barrier and covering that with foam boards, and then new siding.  It was a huge undertaking.  They fixed all kinds of things in the process (eccentric outdoor wiring, nest of carpenter ants, poorly anchored carport).  We’re hoping the house will be warmer in the winter.  And cooler in the summer, but there’s only so much it can do when the nighttime lows what one would normally consider a pleasant daytime high.

Before:

After:

Before:

After:

Before:

After:

The foundation was also re-parged, and looks nice and even, instead of looking like it’s crumbling to dust.

On the whole, I like it.  It looks much cleaner, and less decrepit. But though I was never a fan of the shutters, I find the front looks a little plain now. What I’d like to do is put retractable awnings over the west (on the front of the house) and south windows to keep out the afternoon sun in the summer.  But not for a while.

At the same time as the guys were working on the house, I did some painting.  First, the laundry room (no Before picture.  I’m not that organised):

That picture was taken right after I was done and had returned everything to the room.  The pantry is now mostly empty, and its contents will be removed tomorrow morning.

Realising that, due to over-estimation, I had enough paint left over to do the kitchen, I painted it too.

Before:

After:

It looks better than it did, but I’m not crazy about it.  The cream colour looks really good in the laundry room, which has CF lighting, but looks too pink in the kitchen, which has halogen lighting.  Still, it’s far better than it was.  And you can’t really tell from the picture, but I also stripped all the paint from the kitchen counter.  Underneath the blue latex paint (who does that?  On a counter that gets wiped several times a day?  It looked terrible), was a 50’s formica counter with gold sparkles in it.  Way better than the paint.  Though now the kitchen is very beige.  I’ll probably just paint it again when we’re back.

Then came Vorlon’s room.  That one was a disaster.  It used to have floral wallpaper.  Then, about 5 years ago, when a friend and her kids were over for a chat, I had all the kids go upstairs and rip the paper off, which they did with great enthusiasm.  Most of the paper came off.  Some of it stubbornly refused.  And the room stayed that way until a couple of months ago.  My mother was horrified.  My mother-in-law was horrified.  They were kind of right, but Vorlon never seemed to mind…

Before:

I took what I could of the paper off the walls. I sanded the edges of the pieces that were left. I sanded a patch of drywall that I put there around the same time as the wallpaper came down.  And then I painted.  This was the best payoff of all the rooms I painted.

After:

Though as you can see, one of the casualties from the insulation project was that the drywall in that nook between the windows (drywall, I might add, which was held together with wallpaper.  Sheesh) got cracked when they were prying the old siding off.  I’ll fix it eventually – there’s insulation directly behind that, so it won’t let in any drafts, so I don’t feel *too* bad about leaving it, but it’s ugly.

And then Zebula’s room.  Before:

After:

And now that those are all done, the hallways and doors and bathrooms look all dingy.  So I have my work cut out for me after we get back.

I discovered something about myself, though. I love painting!  And, having used both VOC-free and regular latex paint, according to availability when I was buying it, I have to say that no-VOC paint is a pain in the ass to deal with.  It goes on just like pudding, only it doesn’t smell as good.  Sure, the latex paint is a little smellier, but much easier to work with.

And since I opted to go to the very air-conditioned movie theatre instead of working on cleaning the house more, I have some work to do this evening. Stay cool, everyone!

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Author: nathknits

Mom, knitter, IT nerd, trying to make it all run smoothly.

3 thoughts on “House makeover

  1. The house looks great! How does Z feel about her unpinkified room?

  2. Ah! I noticed the siding when we were there, but I didn’t get to ooh and ahh over the new kitchen/pantry colours! Oh well, there’s always next year… when it’ll be new-to-you again!

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