We’ve been in the house just under 27 months, at that point where things just drag on. The initial steam wore off and we got used to camping in our home. No oven? No problem, use the toaster oven. No direct access to the back yard? No problem, climb down the fire escape and use a rope and pulley system to lower a picnic basket. Resourceful as it may, the McGyvering is getting old. It would be lovely not to have to step over tools or construction supplies on our way to the bathroom.
To shake out the moroseness, we came up with a 1-year plan of what we’d like to accomplish between now and December 31st (actually this is the bare minimum I’d like to see done so that I can continue to fake it as a quasi-legit grown up). The list is divided into 4 major categories: Spring, 1-Day Projects, Anytime and Oh-God! It breaks down like so:
1-Day Projects. This includes the small annoyances that we put up with so that we can focus on “the big projects.” I decided that if we can tackle some of the smaller things, the overall DIY mood may improve.
* Coat Closet – make parlor floor coat closet a bit more functional/less gross. Give it a good cleaning, paint walls, install shelves for shoes.
* Living room fan – remove ugly ceiling fan in front parlor, which we don’t use anyway.
* Fix old lighting fixtures purchased at salvage shop. Buy globes that fit
* Remove stupid little add-on wall in parlor floor hallway
* Linen closet – turn old roof access ladder closet into linen closet. Clean and patch walls, install shelves.
* Closet of doom – clean out room of all its contents.
Anytime projects. These projects are not weather dependent and can be done at anytime. Got some time? Great, get some of these cross off (at least that’s the idea)…
* Living room fireplace cover – strip paint, put it back in its original place (remove existing cover and take to Build It Green)
* Basement Cement Slab – The removal of the old asbestos tiles in the basement left the floor bumpy. Needs a layer of cement on top
* Closet of doom: demo dry wall and assess plumbing
* Top floor rear mantel – finish stripping
* Fix plaster in garden level vestibule.
Spring Projects. These are important for a variety of reasons: moisture control, rust prevention, general safety, and saving the brownstone from one more freeze-thaw cycle under all that paint.
* Complete façade stripping project
* Front & Rear hatches (replace)
* Stoop railing – finish stripping, paint
* Raise grape arbor to create enough space for seating area beneath
* Back yard drainage project
* Source of water for backyard hose
* Stoop – repair steps
Oh-God! Projects. These are the most daunting projects on the list. The stripping of the façade should probably be in this category, but I remain
deluded determined that “it’s no big deal.”
* Bedroom woodwork – sand and oil
* Bedroom ceiling – finish spackle, add moulding & trim
* Bedroom walls – strip, fix cracks, prime and paint
* Parlor flooring – replace cheap-o stick on parquet with actual flooring
* Fix plaster under stairs, fix squeaky stairs (the plaster is helping this along by falling off in chunks – yippie!)
* Closet room – fix plaster
* Closet of doom – fix plumbing
* Parlor woodwork – strip (muppet flesh paint be gone!)
And that’s about it for the year. I’m hoping things get it done, because there is a ton more where this came from.