Home Renos - Dream to Do List



  1. Renovate Bathroom

  2. Repair entrance awning and staircase

  3. Remove addition, replace addition with exterior patio and gazebo

  4. Replace interior entrance closet doorway

  5. Replace water-damaged wall and insulation

  6. Renovate kids living room to a more adult space

  7. Repaint kitchen cabinets

  8. Replace living room side window

  9. Create seating cushions for the living room picture window

  10. Clean out exterior storage

  11. Replace office flooring & office ceiling

  12. Add central air

  13. Replace hallway flooring

  14. Replace roof

  15. Add water feature to patio space

  16. Add fencing to front yard

  17. Add exterior wood box for stacking firewood

  18. Refresh landscaping


So, this Spring I have a very limited budget for some home renovations. I own an older mobile home which I bought and renovated when the children were young, then raised four kids inside the walls. Meaning, it needs some work! Also, meaning, I have the perfect opportunity to blog about my improvements this year! Now, within my budget, there is the dream-before-I-sell-it someday list and there is the make-it-nicer-to-live-in list. It is the second one I'll be working on this summer.


Water, in this house, has not been my friend. I knew, when I bought it, that the hot water tank had exploded prior to my purchase. The previous owners fixed that, though it may have been an omen of things to come. Over the years, the roof has leaked, been repaired, leaked again, been repaired again. Currently, it seems to be in the repaired stage of its existence. Replacing it someday is on my to do list. Sadly, this is financially beyond me for now, so the cycle continues.


As well as the roof, the pipes under the house once burst (fixed), the pipes connecting the house to the well burst (fixed), and the bathroom pipes -- particularly the tub, leak (Not fixed). They've been fixed on more than one occasion, and they are on the agenda again.


The awning on the patio blew off in a rough wind a few years ago. It's on the to fix this summer list. Along with it, my patio stairs are getting replaced. In truth, I'd like to reposition the staircase so that the entrance to the home could be contained inside fencing, but that's not happening. At least right now.


My son once threw a dart at a dartboard from the distance of the room, missed, hit and shattered the sliding glass patio door. That was, from necessity, replaced immediately. The double-paned living room window, though, has been a single pane ever since the boys and their friends were wrestling in the living room.


The entranceway closet needs to be replaced at some point since one of the boys punched a hole in it. Only today I learned this was because of Justin Bieber. To be precise, my youngest was singing, Baby, baby, baby, oh, baby, baby, baby, oh. Her brother said stop. She sang baby, baby, baby, oh, baby, baby, baby, oh. He said stop. She sang baby, baby, baby, oh... and he put his fist through the door. She stopped. Those are the two who still live here from time to time. Question: how do we feel about the retroactive grounding of children? (Asking for a friend). And are we all in agreement that they both deserve to be punished for this one?


Also, since last year I broke my foot the first week of April, my lawn did not get due care and attention last year. This year, there is work to do to make up for that. Apparently, the parents have decided to gift me with their old farm truck now that they don't have a farm. Score! The bane of my existence is this hedge which straddles my property line and my neighbour's. It grows like a weed, and I'd love to rip the thing out, but my neighbour wants to keep it. So, I've had a brainstorm. Rather than climbing up a rickety, scary ladder with a sharp-toothed hedge trimmer dangling at my side, I'm going to simply stand in the box of the truck while I trim, and all the trimmings will fall in beside me, and I will add a tarp, and cart it all off to the dump. BECAUSE I AM A GENIUS!


So, along with working, writing, traveling, selling my books at farmer's markets, and going for the occasional swim, home improvements are on my Spring and Summer agenda. Starting with the bathroom! (Because it is my least favourite room in the house)


My bathroom has ugly yellow Formica countertops, yellow ugly cabinets, beige walls, rust stains in the tub and the sink, an awful tub surround, and a horrifying 70's-is-calling light fixture. The reno will involve painting the walls, painting the countertops, painting the cabinets, painting the sink and the tub. It will also involve pulling the current fixtures off the walls, changing out the light fixture, changing the cabinet doorknobs, pulling off the tub surround and replacing it with a paint and tile combination, replacing the tub faucets, swapping out the outlet covers, adding baseboards, painting the mirror and adding select nautical touches.


Stay tuned next week to hear how the bathroom reno is progressing, and once it is done, I'll tell you which project is next!



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