Completed projects:

roof, kitchen, master bedroom, main bathroom (sans shower tile), fireplace, hardwood flooring, windows, office, front entry, stairway

Ongoing projects:

shower surround, dapping/painting woodwork, ensuite vanity/lights/mirror, painting outdoor trim, finishing front entry tile work, interior door painting and hardware, decorating

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

When the Tooth Fairy image dies, and your boy runs away from home...

It's been quite a last couple of days here. I can see signs that my 9 yr old is much more mature that I imagined him to be already. (wake up me!!)

Yesterday as I was laying beside Cody in his bed before bedtime, he asked me what the Tooth Fairy looked like and insisted knowing if she was real. I've always allowed him to believe in those magical childhood figures if he wished, even though I couldn't lie about it. But to cough out the truth so soon?!? I wasn't ready!

My fav answer, "What do you think?"


"Ok, well, I come if she doesn't show.."


Can't do it can't do it can't do it! Why now? Ohhh, I get it. Cody just lost a tooth yet again and isn't trusting the Forgetful Yarrow Tooth Fairy to arrive because she is abit of a scatter brain. The jig is up.

So I cough out the truth, fearing what exactly I don't know, but just feeling sooo uneasy about letting the childlike images disappear in the wind. And how does Cody respond? He sits up and cheers! Huh?!? Isn't he crushed?!?!?

"Mom, I know what the Toothfairy looks like. She looks just like YOU!"

Today I get bombarded with more questions. "Where are ALL MY TEETH Mom?" Yes, I did save each and every one in baggies with post it notes inside displaying the date and Cody's age and placed them in school scrapbooks. But I told him that under my breath hoping he wouldn't hear. I'm rattled that he knows! He knows!!

So here I am in a tither about my baby not so much a baby any longer and we get into a tiff about something totally unrelated. Still reeling from my tooth confession, I now quickly switch gears and attempt to drive this ship to port. But her anchor is mighty heavy and things aren't looking good on that horizon. Nope. Big BIG storm brews ahead and then hits with full force, sending us both over the brink head first.

Then the words I've been long wondering about finally arrive... "I'm running away from home!" (I don't think I've done too bad if he waited to tell me this at the ripe old age of 9)

So he's going. I'm in the kitchen smirking and I hear the loading of a totebag in motion. Dumping and grunting and shuffling. The runaway finally emerges out of the room with a VERY stuffed tote and Winnie the Pooh blanket under the other arm. (awww...) Cody makes some good eye contact with me on his way out as if to say, "See? I mean business! I'm outa here for good!" Yep, him and Winnie are a team!

I say nothing although I'm dieing to. He makes it downstairs and then states, "Mom, I not REALLY going to run away." But not really understanding what that meant, after the front door closes, I run downstairs grabbing my shoes so I can spy on him from a distance for safety's sake.

First I look out the front door window. I see his stuff on the sidewalk but not him. I open the door and he's scrunched against the house with his blanket. It's raining out and he wanted to stay dry. LOL I said nothing and left the door open and went to vaccum the house. Downstairs. By him.

I check on him every so often but pretend I'm cleaning. I was ready to run from tree to tree barefoot in the rain if I had to, but alas, things never quite got that far. The last time I peeked around the corner, he was cuddled in his Winnie blanket and had ripped open that long noodle soup stuff and was eating it crunchy and dry right outa the bag while reading a book. Here's how I found him...

Cody spots me watching him. I can barely contain myself as I'm busting up laughing inside but instead, throw him a smile full of love and he returns it. "Mom, can you sit with me and read me a book?"


I can't stand it a minute longer and glance into his tote. A tupperware tub of change, (mostly pennies) Ipod Dog thing, Nintendo DS, a TON of library books,(thatta boy!) underwear and socks, swim shorts (for those hot summer evenings while pounding pavement I'm sure) and a pen set that he knew was a keepsake from my Dad. (ok, that one touched me)

I'm amazed and had to say, "Why did you pack SO MANY books?"

"Because I wanted you to be happy."

Awww.... even when the boy runs away, he wishes his Mom good things!

And something tells me Cody will have full expectations that the Tooth Fairy continues to visit. After all, it's now easier to just yell from room to room,


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

The most sincere form of flattery hit today

I want you to hear about my friend Dorothy. She's a long time friend that I met long ago when I had a storefront business. She was another biz's bookeeper that I shared rental space from and I had hired her to help me with my biz way back as well.

Over the years, she's continued to be my bookeeper, but much moreso, my friend. We have a great history together.

Dorothy is also virtually gutting her older home with the help of her family, so we are sharing some stories of late that are all too familiar and often hilarous.

I had often thought of Dorothy over the years and her patience in waiting for her home to be renovated some day. My thoughts always jumped to her when I'd see Extreme Home Makeover Home Edition on TV. I so was wishing that could be her. Her place was in the shape mine was if not worse off so it was long overdue. Dorothy is also a solo parent after quite a history of ups and downs, just one more thing in common.

Strangely enough, she started hacking away at her home just about the same time as mine started to progress with the help of the MB Church volunteers. So hearing about where she's at just makes me smile. She SOOOO deserves this!

Today I was lettering up a group of vans where she bookeeps so I got to spend some smalltalk with her today. Apparently the ONLY thing standing in her kitchen at the present moment is her stove. Right in the middle of the room. That's it. LOL

She told me about how all her cupboard contents were strewn through her livingroom (prepping me for the future no doubt!!) And not only was her house in total ciaos, her workplace is also preparing to move in two weeks! Boxes surrounded her desk, floor to ceiling.

I asked her, "So where do you go to unwind from all this reno stuff?"



So today she peeks in the back of my truck over coffee break and glances at a can of paint I picked up today. Apparently she's also on the lookout for the perfect mocha colour and she was also having a tough time, running through a few gallons and inappropriate tones and such. I told her my little woeful story of this being my 5th colour and I was finally happy. She mentioned she liked it but it MAY be abit light for her... But anywhoo, they'd try to tint some cans already purchased, perhaps just a tad till it was perfect.

Fast forward 2 hours later. I get a call on my cell. I'm guessing the retinted mochas didn't fly and she says, "What was your paint colour? I want to order it and just paint!"

Her request made me smile my biggest smile. Dorothy knows what I'm like. An artistic mind thinks of all things no normal civilian would even bother to invent! I drive me crazy and I know it and she knows it too. So armed with faith that I've done my homework right, she wants MY colours.

I ever so happily divulged the info. I want her happy too! And to save her the frustration I travelled through to find what I finally liked. She just trusts me.

And she's done that on other occasions too. At times I shop for things and when I know it's a steal of a deal and I've changed my mind, I call her first before returning the item. She many times yells a big fat YES over the phone. One time I asked her, "How do you know you'll like it without seeing it?!?" She replied, "Because YOU don't do ANYTHING ugly!" I just love this girl. :)

I'm most curious as to what her home will look like with these colours. I can't to see it, for I know against her new dark cabinets, it'll look GORGEOUS.

Happy painting, Dorothy! And thanks for the flattering vote of confidence!

And should those paint colours NOT work for you for some reason or another, I'm your first customer in line for them so call me. LOL

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

First day of work in the office

My face is tired. I've been smiling ear to ear all day long as I finally got a real work day in my new office!

Big open spaces, loads of table space for my work, there isn't anything else I could possibly desire! I actually looked around today and took a deep breath, as if there was finally enough fresh air in the room to enjoy.

And just flat out pretty! Soft tan walls against that gorgeous white pine ceiling, crown moulding , beefy window casing and beefier than ever baseboards.. gorgeous!!! The room just carries a very calm airy feeling.

Now comes the hard part. Putting away my stuff in such a manner where neatness prevails. Guess some storage solutions will be in order shortly.

But for now, I love it bare, empty, echoey if you will! I am simply enjoying ALL THE ROOM!

Thanks team, for making my workday a great one!

Now let's not quite talk about the storage-use-to-be-laundry-room where all my stuff is still sitting... :)

The game of find and seek what's different

There's active little mice in my house... or so it seems.

I was gone for the weekend taking care of my newly injured 81 yr old mom. She fell on uneven pavement and broke her arm and nose so we (family members) are helping her cope with the use of one arm for now. (she's doing so well btw!!! I'm very proud of her!)

Anyway, when I returned, I noticed several things...

New sawdust in the kitchen. Cool... backsplash of counter had been cut and screwed back on to prep for electrical install. Made me want to help and just yank the rest of it out, now I'm feelin' it!

New electrical panel installed!

Blueberries in the fridge, and earlier in the week, blueberries AND raspberries left on the front doorstep. Being put to excellent use I might add! (thanks Vic!)

Some gardening done.

It's always abit of a game to see what's changed. I come home and race around glimpsing in rooms with a gameful smile on my face and feel victory when I spot the difference!

The game of find and seek continues to be an exciting one around here. Thanks folks!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

The new office is born!

AAAAAAAH! I'm in! After three long years, my office dream is finally here!

My day started off with typical work at home day with Dave whizzing to and fro in the background. I promised him after lunch I'd join in the fun for it sure looked alot more fun than paying bills and such...

So after lunch I ran to him and told him he was in charge and where did he want me.

Dave is organized and likes to see things done right, no ifs, ands or buts. I was more than happy to comply! So we focused on the pile of stuff in the office. It was high time we moved in Dave said, so we simply made today the day.

After Dave snapped up the last baseboard, the vaccum cleaner created the perfect platform for my desk. BUT first, came my Ikea trials and tribulations. I had picked up two small extentions for my current desk and oh lucky me, the manual was plenty fat and ready for me to take way too long to figure out. But eventually with abit of Dave's guidance (I moan and groan some when things get tough and he overheard me) it was done!

Next, dinosaur computer equipment. Yellowed components with Windows 98 no less but hey, it all works! Not anxious to unhook everything under the sun, I scootched it all bit by bit across the floor dragging wires galore with Dave's help.

Oops. Piano in the way. So Dave helped me finally put that thing all together (movers had dismantled some stuff)and he wanted it facing out, so our viewing public had a nicer view. Details I tell ya... oh, and we both played chopsticks together to make sure it still worked and all that.

Wow. Now I'll have to find a way to free up my memory card so I can start taking more pics! (that's why I stopped and my laptop burps when I ask it to burn a dvd.. whatever)

So, for you viewing public, I guess you'll just have to pay a visit!

I'm also planning a place for the 'signing wall.' For everyone that has helped on this project and wellwishers, I'd love them to sign a wall with a comment if they wish. I'd like to have done it sooner however nothing was painted and ready yet. So what wall do you think? The office? The bathroom wall would make for some interesting reading and be kinda funny... must ponder abit more...

Dave, thanks for a day full of laughs and some very intense exquisite work! I get to enjoy the memory of working with you every time I walk through my NEW OFFICE!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Moulding day!

Dave and Vic worked on a whole lotta mouldings today. Amazing what a few well fitted pieces of board will do to a doorway or window. It's just starting to have a nice finished look in many areas now! These guys certainly know how to make pretty stuff!

Rich came by tonite and showed me how to plug in my computer once I move my office in the new area. Now I'm getting brave.. armed with abit of knowledge, I'm so ready to drag the desk in there and try it out!

Pete and Erna showed up tonite as well to check on the progress.

Some of my work got postponed so I was able to put it down and help with some renos today. We'll see what tomorrow holds. I'd imagine abit of everything. One day at a time. We're getting there...

On the balance of summer renos

I'm back from a little campsite r&r. Rich had come in my absense to tinker around with the office electrical connections. Nearly ready to move in there! Thanks Rich!

I don't know about others, but for me it's hard to be indoors in summer. I mean, the good weather isn't quitting! Isn't it awesome for us rain country folk?!?

Before I escaped to my campsite last week, I finished painting the bathroom ceiling, walls and closet. It is complete! So complete it was hard to leave without hanging stuff up and making it pretty. I had also purchased a new toilet and tile and lights. So I have lots of homework and am eager to continue!

Balance. It's all about balance. Work, play and renos. Do abit of it all and it all keeps progressing slowly. Sun or no sun, I SHALL balance this juggling act out!

My 81 yr old mom got hurt last weekend by a bad fall (please pray for her recoup, broken shoulder) and I'm bringing her over to the 'reno house' this weekend to look after her as well as offer her a change of scenery. She hasn't seen what's been going on yet and there's lots to show her!

So being that I will be at home on the weekend, I just may get abit more done here and there... this could be a very good thing!

Ok, onto this glorious summer day of work, play and renos! I think I can I think I can I think I can... scratch that. I KNOW I will...

Friday, July 11, 2008

My first incredibly beautiful window!

Dave and Vic came Wednesday. Dave is our finishing carpenter extraordinare and I'm learning when Dave comes by, things get pretty really quick!

It's all about finishing the office downstairs. So that's the first window that was chosen. It's a large picture window. I was working at home in my office when I had to steal the odd glance up to see what the guys were up to. It was pretty exciting seeing all these long mouldings slip inside the house through the big window.

The crown moulding went up first against that beautiful pine ceiling. All I can say is WOW...

Then the window. I saw the guys building the frame outside for a moment, but I returned back to my own work again. Next thing I knew, I looked up and BAM! This drop dead gorgeous window casing, sills, frames what have you were in place. And what I saw was stunning!

Understand, I was use to seeing that bent up stained aluminum window with very ugly rough brown boards around it. To see the NEW window bright and white especially against the new paint job on the walls, incredible.

Rich also stopped by in the PM on his way through town to spec out what's been going on.

And tonite I wasn't home and when I arrived home at 10pm, (shopping for the house, what else?!?) a nice new hole was cut into the bathroom ceiling for my new ceiling fan! And my ceiling light was reinstalled in the office! (been a long while with no light in that room). AND...

Fresh delicious raspberries in my fridge!

There may be more surprises scattered around, and if so, I have yet to discover them. It's time to get some shuteye. I plan to hack away at the house Friday, finishing up some painting.

Thanks to the mystery guest tonite! (I'm guessing Pete and maybe even Vic) and to Dave and Vic for yesterday. Some days it doesn't seem like much transpires as the prep is harder to accomplish than finishing. But then one day it's simply finally done AND looks fantastic!

Just, really really cool. Renos are hard work, but through the enormous effort put forth, you are rewarded with something so beautiful in the end. Amazing what you can do with nails, boards and paint in the right hands. I am so fortunate!