Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Getting Stuff Done

Lynn had said that over the summer, she would get most of the work finished on the Office of Multiplicity, across the street from my house. For some reason, she filled her summer break from school with other activities and only got a few things done. When school started, I hoped she would still come on weekends to finish. Unfortunately, this hasn't happened, and when she stopped returning cell phone calls, emails, or calls to her school, it became obvious that she didn't need the cash any more and had lost interest in the project.

Luckily, the gentleman who rents The Blue House is a former house remodeler, and he's jumped into the void and is working on the project on weekends. He has finished the room that will actually be my office, complete with bamboo flooring, and now he's at work on the kitchen, which must be done before the rest of the flooring.

What we have discovered in the past few weeks is another clue in why Lynn quit. She had made a number of decisions during the course of the project that were about to become problems.

1. On the doorway between the kitchen and sun room, she installed the door jamb and panelling in the wrong order, leaving the facing off. Turns out that the facing cannot be installed now without leaving an obvious gap that would run from the top of the door to the floor. Also, when the door facing is installed, the oven door may not open, and we most likely can't pull out the range.

2. The electrician installed the boxes and plugs before the paneling, so Lynn *should have* loosened them and moved them to the front of the paneling. She didn't. So, if you try to put the face plates on the plugs and switches, the screws won't even reach, and the plugs and switches are recessed in the wall.

3. In the bathroom, the linen closet unit was built so short that the crown molding will not cover the gap between the top and the ceiling.

4. The pantry unit for the kitchen was built too tall, and we couldn't stand it up without ruining the ceiling. The solution for that was cutting an inch off the bottom of the unit.

We don't know what else will show up as we work our way through the rest of the project, but it is frustrating to have these problems reveal themselves after she stopped communicating and working. She let me down, and I think she let herself down. It appears she worked herself into a corner where she was going to have to admit she had made mistakes, and instead of dealing with it, she disappeared. It's sad.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

The History of Clutter

Nathan was completely correct on his last visit home when he said that the house is filled with clutter. It touched a nerve because the clutter level has REALLY been bothering me, too, but the last two years have been so hectic that I haven't been able to make any large headway in the de-cluttering campaign.

What I have realized since Mom died is that you can't keep everything that has a memory attached. Mom kept too much from her mother's house, and in the months just after Mom's passing, I felt obligated to keep a lot of those things, plus things from Mom's house that held memories for me. Unfortunately, there isn't room for all those objects in my home. A couple of things will move over to the "office" across the street when that remodeling project is complete, but many things just need to be sold or donated to the Goodwill.

There are many things in various rooms that are momentos of Travis and Nathan's school years, too. These objects need to be sorted and stored by the owners...not me. Be forewarned, offspring, you may be receiving a package in the mail. :-)

When I
left my teaching position at LHS, there were many art supplies and books and some furniture that came home with me. I had spent so much money out of my own pocket that I wasn't going to leave it behind to be thrown away. I have supplies for watercolor, pastels, quilting, sewing, origami, and etc etc etc.

Besides all this, there is complete collection of sports equipment, travel souvenirs, books and just plain stuff that accumulates when you live in the same house for over thirty years.

My goal for the winter of 2006 - 2007 is to finish the office, move furniture, have a yard sale, take stuff to the Goodwill, and generally declutter my home. I have made a start. I've made two trips to the Goodwill with things from the bathroom cabinets and the living room, and one trip to Helping Hands in Edna.

Stay tuned for updates!