Wednesday, June 15, 2016
Fun With Home Ownership
It's done! The painters finished doing the trim on the majority of the second floor and part of the first floor today (leaving undone the areas so cluttered with furniture and stuff it would be a royal pain to move to paint what's not visible anyway), in gleaming basic white, and it looks great. No more chipped, dull, dingy "linen white" baseboards and doors; even the "linen white" walls, not repainted, look better with the white trim contrasting against their pale, pale beige and making it subtly darker and richer rather than the former overall blahness. Before it was all bland and tired-looking; now it pops. So, let's see now; over the last year or so in my townhouse I've upgraded thus: Put new toilets in the second floor bath and first floor half bath, getting better workings with lower water usage in clean white fixtures (bye-bye stains of age and manganese-laden water), not to mention eliminating a slow leak downstairs before it rotted out the floorboards. Repainted the second floor bathroom, including caulking fixups and installing a new cabinet. Put in three new windows upstairs and four downstairs. What a difference from the barely functional 30-year-old clunkers they replaced! Repainted the woodwork around the new windows, including the window seats under the first and second floor double windows. Put new carpet on most of the second floor and the stairs down, replacing 30-year old gray beaten-down horribleness in the bedroom and sadly fraying berber on the stairs. Replaced all the ugly beige plastic switch plates in the kitchen with copper-toned brushed metal plates that complement the color of the wall tile pattern. Replaced three overhead light fixtures in the bathroom and the first and second floor hallways, putting in daylight LEDs that banish the former sullen dim yellowish light with bright white; also replacing "soft white" yellowish CFLs in the kitchen overhead with daylight LEDs, and an elderly incandescent overhead in the half bath with ditto. Replaced the outside cutoff switch (that had a broken door fallen off its enclosure) to the exterior central air compressor, so that I then could... Replace the 30-year-old compressor, sadly rusted, with a more efficient unit even though it was still functioning, rather than wait for it to die during a heat wave. Took out the garbage disposal that quit working and replaced it with straight pipe since I'd pretty much stopped using it when I began composting, thus eliminating the smelly dark gunk that would accumulate even when it wasn't being used and the frequent semi-clogging of the drain, not to mention the leak from the bottom of the disposal I discovered when clearing out under the sink for the plumber. And now, the repainting. What worlds are left to conquer in my tiny realm? Well, the berber carpet in the living room looks kinda old and tired.... But then I look around at all the crap I'd have to move to replace it and think, okay, having the rug professionally cleaned would be a lot cheaper and require moving a lot less stuff. Oh, and the first and second floor decks badly need power washing, sanding, and repainting -- but that can wait another year! I'm done for now.