Kids’ rooms progress report

School starts in less than two weeks (cue the singing angels), and my summer goal was to have the kids’ room makeovers mostly completed. The big jobs should be finished in that time, and the smaller jobs easier to complete while my “helpers” are busy at school.

Over the weekend I painted Mr. Ten’s room. I bought Behr Paint and Primer All-in-One from Home Depot for two reasons: I prefer low-VOC paint, especially in a bedroom, and I hoped to avoid using more than two coats to cover the bright green walls. The coverage was wonderful, and I only needed one gallon to give the room two coats.

We are all pleased with new color. I even touched up the baseboards, which had suffered during my earlier paint jobs. Painting over the vinyl rocket and stars decal worked as I had hoped. As soon as the second coat was dry to the touch, I peeled off the vinyl and was left with a clean stenciled outline. The room feels calmer without two bright colors fighting for attention.

Next on the list: assemble the tall Billy bookcase (which will provide more space to consolidate books and collections in one place) and upholster a headboard.

I also scored Miss Eight’s new bed for half price. Hello, random Happy Hour sale in the Ikea As-Is department! I bought an assembled floor model of the Leirvik bed for $43. Often the floor models show some wear and tear, but this one (probably because it’s metal, not wood) didn’t have a scratch. They put it on a flat-bed cart, handed me a wrench, and helped me wheel it out to an area where the kids and I disassembled the bed so we could fit it into the car.

I also hung some artwork, but still have a couple more things to hang: the cork board and a mirror and shelf that we’re going to turn into a little vanity area.

I’m pretty sure there were other things on my summer to-do list, but I’m choosing to ignore them. Any progress is cause for celebration!

Revisiting my New Year’s Resolutions

End-of-year pile of artwork

End-of-year pile of artwork

Today is the last day of school for Miss Seven and Mr. Ten. It’s not even June! And it seems a very long time until August. (Though when I look at my calendar, it’s clear we won’t be sitting at home with nothing to do.) I thought it might be a good time to revisit my New Year’s Resolutions, see what we’ve accomplished, and make a plan for what I might tackle over the summer months.

2013 Resolutions

  • Paint and paper the kids’ bathroom; replace the shoe moulding; add floating shelves (bonus points: raise the light fixture and frame the mirror)
  • Organize the tools in the garage
  • Clean out the laundry room
  • Replace the computer armoire with a simple desk in the living room (maybe a DIY with an old door and some IKEA table legs)
  • Continue the landscaping project–at the very least, the vegetable garden and compost pile
  • Spackle and touch up/finish paint all over the house
  • Figure out two comfortable reading chairs and lighting in the living room
  • Refinish or paint the extra kitchen barstools
  • Cut down the rest of the old shrubs around the driveway (just one left by the lamp post)
  • Patch the concrete under the garage door
  • Organize basement sewing area and kids’ craft area
  • Paint, refinish dresser and redecorate Miss Seven’s room
Our growing veggie plot! I am now addicted to freshly picked lettuce.

Our growing veggie plot! I am now addicted to freshly picked lettuce.

After five months, I guess that’s not too bad. Add the powder room makeover, which wasn’t even on the list, and I feel pretty good about our progress. I have all the supplies for the computer desk project–now I just need to DO it.

As I look at the list, I realize those extra kitchen barstools aren’t really a priority. Since I found a place for them in the pantry, I don’t have to look at them when we’re not using them. In my mind, I’ve added Mr. Ten’s room to the list. After seeing the redecorating plans for Miss Seven’s room, he decided he is also ready for a new look. We’re going to repaint, get him a tall bookcase and maybe a reading chair, rearrange the furniture, and generally declutter. He’s picked out a cool gray-blue color called “Ozone” for the walls, which should take him into the teen years without needing another big change.

Here's hoping that if we move it away from the wall, it might be easier to make the bed.

Here’s hoping that if we move it away from the wall, it might be easier to make the bed.

So what’s at the top of my summer list?

  1. Assemble the new computer desk already! (And probably add some wall shelving above it.)
  2. Paint both kids’ rooms.
  3. Landscaping: repair and replant grass in the front yard, and add some new plants in front of the porch.
  4. Organize tools in the garage.
  5. Patch the concrete under the garage door.
This grass needs help.

This grass needs help.

That feels plenty ambitious for one summer! My goal for today is to strip the paint off the door that will serve as the top of the computer desk. This weekend, weather permitting, we hope to work on the yard a little.

What summer projects are on your list this year?