When I bought the house back in 2001, each room in the house, even the yard work seems to have it’s own list.
My first outside list (now completed)
- remove 40′-50′ Holly trees (you know the ones…sharp dagger thorns around every leaf) (2) from the front yard, and (1) from the back yard
- remove the rows of bushes that ran parallel with the sidewalk (it was actually 1 overgrown bush on each side that re-rooted itself all the way down the edge of the sidewalk)
- remove the half-assed, used to be, brick water-well decoration
- there was also a half-assed, broken brick fire-pit that I removed from the back yard after Ridley Twp told me that it was illegal to burn!
- ever hear of monkey-balls? well, they are the pointy golf-ball sized things that cyprus gum trees drop (all year round)…and no matter how many times you run them over with the lawn-mower, they still hurt your feet with or without shoes on. There were 2 of these trees that have been cut down and removed. I do miss the shade they provided, but I just couldn’t keep up with the clearing of the monkey-balls
My first inside list (also completed)
- rip up the ugliest teal, from the early 60’s carpet (I was sick for 2 weeks after that project)…BUT, the OAK hardwood floor underneath was/is in perfect condition!!
- gut & re-do bathroom
Over the last few years, things that have gotten done list
- had the chimney ducts replaced for the hot water heater and the furnace (the ducts that were replaced were terracotta and breaking causing very poor air movement)
- cut down all the boxwood bushes along the front porch that looked like lolipops (one stick with a puff on top) and replaced with new ones
- cut down the dead evergreen tree that was brown underneath from the dead with about an inch of green on top that made it look alive
- replace shed (you should have seen the slanted, no door, rusted old shed that was taxed and insured as a “structure”)
- replace back deck (if that’s what you want to call a 24″ wide boardwalk to 3 rickety steps)
- replace french drain and sump pumps to go completely around the basement (this was a scam from a water-proofing company, because there is still a water issue (Hydrostatic Pressure)
- had a real stairway installed to the attic, the pull down stairs would hang and sway without the terrific rigging that the previous owner had left me with (I may have went up those steps 5-10 times before I finally said that it was too dangerous)
- basement – what I call the hotel room – carpet, drywall, furnish
- basement – laundry room – floating flooring (it’s 3’x1′ tiles that seal to each other that sits on top of the existing flooring
- basement – what I want to be the game room – there has been a water issue in the basement that has prevented me from doing what I want down there, but I have a plan in the works
- one of the best things, so far, that has been done is the fireplace insert, before it, if one door was open on the fireplace and the other was not, the house would slowly fill up with smoke and as much as I love the smell of a fireplace, this was not ideal for heat, romance or a bear skin rug. So on one of our trips to New Hampshire, we stopped at a Vermont Casting Dealer and got a great deal on a discontinued model. Getting it in my car wasn’t a problem, they used a crane…but getting it out, well lets just say I drove around with it in the back of the SUV for a few days. There is a long story to the installing of this insert but I think I will leave that for another post. Once it was installed, there was new duct work through the chimney so it felt very safe burning wood even when we were not home…I have had to run the fan on the lowest setting for most of the ongoing fires, because it would get so warm that I would feel the need to sit outside.
- with the insert installed, we had the outside chimney re-cemented and re-stucco, they did a great job on this, but had my budget been a little bigger for this project, I would have went with the stone-face…but like I said, I am really happy with the work that was done