Tagged with " study"
Aug 5, 2012 -

Major Chaos For Major Improvement

WHEW. My mother and I are done with the last bit of the hard core renos we planned for the summer. Now, we have all the little details to finish up as well as the inverter and battery monitor projects. So I really don’t have much to show off just now, but some is better than none!

First off, my new desk top. OMG. I didn’t even know I needed this until my mother informed me that I did:

Hopefully, third time will be the charm for the desk. 😀

What we did is cover the existing desk with two layers of 1/2″ MDF glued together (no 1″ sheets available). We then covered the new work surface with cloth-backed vinyl. The colour is delicious. It’s sold as ‘plum’ but looks like chocolate in artificial light and wine in natural light. It contrasts perfectly with the green and the red tones can be found in the flowers of my curtains. The lady at the fabric store told me three times that I had made an excellent choice of colour and she was right!

I am worried about kitty claws, so I’ll be covering empty swaths of the desk with a mat or blanket.

There is now a gap between the top of the little bookcase and the new desk and I have a wooden ‘in box’ that fits perfectly there. I’ll show it off once it has a handle and latch. There is also a gap at the other end of the new desk top, at the end of the mattress:

My mother thought that my extension cord management idea was good, so she improved the idea, building a new bed frame with gaps for holding cords. We covered it with plastic trellis to give the mattress a flat surface to lie on. The trellis is rigid enough to be a good surface, is light, and will wear well. It was expensive, but the best product for the job.

At the end of the mattress, you can see a wide plastic drawer. I picked it up at the Ottawa Solutions store (I’ve never been to a Container Store, but I suspect it’s the same idea). The drawer spans the whole width and depth of the hole and is going to be used for archival storage (ie. old report cards, greeting cards, correspondence, and the like). I used to have all of that in a basket in an overhead cabinet, but this is a much better use of space. Over top of the drawer is just enough space for storing my laptop for travel.

Also at Solutions, I picked up what I needed to stop swearing each time I open the door to my wonderfully spacious medicine cabinet:

I like to open the door when I pass and just smile at how pretty and organized the cabinet is now. 🙂

The cabinet is well designed in that it has a lip on the bottom of each shelf, but everything would tumble out when I opened the door. I wanted containers that would fill the space and be retained by the lip.

So I brought the measurements for the shelves with me to Ottawa and went through the store until I found the cheapest items that could fit in the space. The silver containers were deeply discounted office supplies. There were three of the big ones left and without any real thought, I grabbed four of the narrower ones. Got home and discovered I still had a gap, perfectly filled by my brown basket. I couldn’t have designed this space more perfectly! Every space is sorted by use and everything is so apparent. No more opening up a tube of toothpaste when I already have one started.

To whet your appetites a little, my wonderful new dresser is now functional and just awaiting finishing details. The wall in the living room is up, but the door needs some catches and both need paint. There’s a new water pump access panel in the entrance stairwell, but it too needs paint. The filing cabinet still needs securing, but we think we have the solution. The office and dressing room both need paint touch ups. I also need tons of trim along the floor, but that will come with the electrical work.

My home was fine the way it was, but it is now ‘much better’ (said in my mother’s hilariously exaggerated French Canadian accent!).

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Decorating, Homemaking, Maintenance & Repair, Organizing, Personal, Renovating, Technical    2 Comments
Jul 29, 2012 -

Working Towards Major Improvements

My mother and I started to do some work on the rig this weekend. She muchly expanded our to do list. The end result is going to be blog worthy awesomeness at some point, but is only half completed at present.

One project that we did finish were the curtains in the study. Yes, I already had curtains in the study, and lovely ones at that, but only from the inside. They didn’t look finished on the outside and were, according to the US customs official in 2011, a dead giveaway that my rig was a full-time home. So we lined all the curtains with white material to make them look uniform around the rig and moved the rods up higher so that they don’t show from outside, like so:

I wish I’d thought to grab a before pic, but that’s me. 🙂

Next, the hideous, never meant to be permanent, cloth dresser is GONE!!! WOOHOO!!!!!!!!!!!

However, due to a slight and easily fixable, measuring error, I can only show you this teaser of my new wonderful, everything I hoped for, dresser:

I have gone from six huge drawers to nine smaller drawers and I look forward to organizing my clothes this evening. 🙂

We also started to get the filing cabinet secured, a job that surprisingly has my mother stumped.

And I sort of have a new desk! This is one project that I would never have thought I needed done, but which my mother zeroed in on right away because of my the new client I’ve picked up. I’m not sharing an pics of that till the job is completed because the awesomeness of the end result will be diminished by showing an in progress pic. 🙂

We’re short on time, but after finishing all of these projects, we have some major work to do in the living room, including building a wall, a door, and possibly even a closet.

And at some point, we are going to get that new inverter installed. I did some research and discovered that a 1,000W inverter needs really small gauge wiring, ideally no. 2, so that will require making an even bigger hole in my living room floor. Since I’ll be making one hole, I agree with my mother that I might as well make a bunch more and, well, the end result will be awesome.

I just hope we’re as good at finishing projects as we are at planning them. 😀

(I’m off to Gatineau on business tomorrow, so I may not be able to blog again until the end of the week.)


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Homemaking, Organizing, Personal, Renovating    1 Comment
Apr 7, 2012 -

Behind Schedule, as Usual

I was asked to do some transcription this weekend. I’m currently working for my beginning of May pay cheque, so I’m trying to get in as much work as possible as it will be lovely to have some real income in the middle of my travels. But I took my client to his word that he’d sent 131 minutes of audio (9 hours of work) when it was actually 161 minutes (11 hours of work)! I didn’t clue in to this till late today and what was supposed to be one hour at the apartment complex stretched into three. So I’ve been in income mode for most of the day. I’m not complaining. 🙂

This has actually been a blessing in disguise since it’ll give the brown paint an extra day to cure before I start shifting things in the rig. I did put on the three coats of sealant to the bookcase and desk tops. I hope that will suffice to protect the paint job.

Each time I’ve gone down to the rig, I’ve brought a small load of things. Croft asked in a comment how much extra stuff I’ll need to lug down and the answer is nothing. I’m actually going to be giving away a lot of clothing, which will actually mean I’ll be bringing less into Miranda than I brought into The Apartment. This should serve as sufficient proof to the continued doubters that I continue to have a full-timer’s mentality. That said, I brought everything up over the course of six months and plan to bring it down in about two days, so it’s going to feel like a big job! I need to get into the habit of not going down the stairs without something for the rig.

I plan to bookend tomorrow with transcription and move forward with squaring away the rig in the middle of the day. Once everything is away, it’ll be easier to start bringing in loads of things on Monday.

Departure day is really going to depend on what day I can get help from Jody and/or Gary to get things back into the rig, but it could be as early as a week from tomorrow, but hopefully no further away than eight days!

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Decorating, Finances, Homemaking, Personal, Work    No Comments