Sunday, September 15, 2013

Checking in on My End of Summer To-Do List

Remember my To-Do list of things I wanted to finish before the end of September? Well, we're about halfway through the month, so I figured it's time to check in and see how well I'm doing.

Shall we?

  • Weed and add plants to the front yard garden
  • Weed and divide irises in the side yard gardens (mostly done - 1 small bed left)
  • Add grass seed to bare spots in the back yard
  • Transplant ferns near the shed
  • Transplant plants that did poorly this year to new locations
  • Do something with that compost bin
For the yard stuff, I did put grass seed down in the bare spots around the yard but nothing happened. The seeds just died. So apparently that Weed & Feed stuff I put down just killed any potential for life. Then I had an idea of how to cross off another item on the list. I ended up using the compost to cover the bare spots and hopefully add nutrients back so grass will be able to grow there in the spring. But before I got rid of the compost bin, I did pick these two guys, that were growing our of it. haha

Oh yeah, and see those bottle terrariums looking all cute next to the tomatoes? Check those off the "Inside Projects" list!

As for the irises, I had to jump on that train because I had promised to give some of them to my coworkers when I divided them. So here's what we're looking at now.

The bed pictured above used to only have irises just past that bush to the right of the bird feeder. I divided all the irises and had so many left over that I was able to pull up the weeds in the rest of the bed and plant irises there too. So now the irises go right up to the ground cover, which lines the rest of the driveway. Yay for getting rid of weeds!
Unfortunately, my back was too sore to continue on and address this mess of a garden bed. Still more irises to divide (and sooo many weeds and grass).
But I also had enough irises from the driveway bed to move a bunch to the front garden (which is also in desperate need of weeding and mulching, though that's probably not gonna happen until spring).

Other Outside Projects
  • Paint the eaves around the garage (3/4 of the way there!)
  • Finish up the back porch trim
  • Add house numbers to the front door
So I've already posted the results of the back porch trim and the house numbers projects. Both were pretty successful and easy-ish to check off the list. The eaves are a bit more of a bitch, to be honest.

I should be out finishing up the garage eaves right now, but what can I say? I just didn't want to. But I've only got one side to go, so it will definitely get done before September is through. Here's what I'm working with:
See Mr. Spider in the picture above? Yeah, those guys have been a pleasure to work with. I'll do a full post with before and after pictures as soon as I finish up painting.

Furniture I'm Going to Paint/Makeover
  • Black china cabinet with mirrors (remove doors, add shelf paper, drawers?, paint)
  • Pink desk (paint white with gold dip look)
  • Old white chair (reupholster and paint to go with the pink desk's new look)
  • Small bookshelf (paint, maybe shelf paper)
  • Apothecary unit (going to look for new hardware, maybe sand and stain a darker tone)

Other Inside Projects
  • Stuff pillows and hem the sides (mom made two pillow covers from leftover materials)
  • Totally empty the kitchen, clean, and reorganize
  • Finish up the new terrariums
  • Caulk the gaps around the living room's ceiling trim
I've still got two full weeks to go (and I suppose I can continue this into October when I have free time) but I don't see everything getting crossed off. Such is life.

Oh, but do you see how I didn't cross of anything under the furniture section? Well, sometimes inspiration strikes and you gotta just go with it. So instead of painting one of the pieces I had planned on doing, I did this:
I've actually had this table for years, ever since I found it next to the dumpster at our old apartment. The handle was broken and it was filthy, but otherwise, it was a cute little table, complete with little casters (that exactly match the casters on my new nightstands).

This table ended up being one of the first pieces of furniture I ever attempted to makeover. The maps that cover the top, the shelf, and the front of the drawer are from our trip to Europe in 2008. I added the half-moon handle and then painted the whole thing brown. Yep, brown. Not sure why I did that, other than because I wanted it to look like wood but was afraid to stain it, I guess.

I've gotten rid of some of my freebie furniture finds over the years, but this one always stuck around because of the maps. It was like a trip souvenir.

When I saw the cover of the September 2013 HGTV Magazine, I fell in love with that teal color on the headboard and bedspread. And since our room already has a lot of soft pastel teal accents, I thought it could use a shot of something richer. And wouldn't ya know it, I already had a teal-colored test pot of paint leftover from a failed idea for our half bathroom. And then I remembered that brown paint on the map table and it was like lightning stuck.
And it worked out really well, I think. Not exactly the same color as that headboard in the magazine, but it cost $0 and took about 2 hours. So what more could you want for those numbers? And it totally revives a piece of furniture that I didn't want to let go of but didn't totally love anymore, either.

But I did have some other test pots I considered using though. 
 I liked the idea of the orange with my orange owl blanket, but after I painted a few test spots it seemed like it would be a bit much. So I'm saving that one for a small accent to put on the table maybe.
Anyway, I'm pretty please to have it go from this: (who paints furniture brown anyway? Me.)
To this:
Much happier. Plus, it's actually the exact color of the knobs I added to my nightstands. Didn't realize that until the paint was dry, but what a happy accident! I hadn't really planned to keep the table at the foot of the bed like that, but now that it matches the room so well, I'm kind of digging it. It may only stay there for now, but I'll definitely enjoy it there while I decide where it fits best.
Keep an eye out for that post on the garage eaves. I'm sure the motivation to wrap that project up will be hitting me soon ... I hope.