Small Project Roundup 2019

As someone who constantly has a ton of little/medium  projects going on all at once, a list of them sometimes helps me take a step back and decide which ones to really focus on. I have a huge backlog of projects, but these are the ones I'm really hoping to accomplish this year.

I'm trying to be very money conscious moving forward (really trying to pay off all seizure bills & build my savings account for a new car), so most of these are things I already have on hand & just need to buckle down on. Others will be just budget friendly projects that come along the way.
Here's an idea of some of the things to come this year (no particular order whatsoever):

Front porch/Garden

I need to still make the summer side of my reversible porch sign, and I'd like to really clean up the garden. We started last year, but never replanted much other than annuals, so I'm hoping that this year I can really tackle that & make the side garden stand out.

I let our pumpkins and squash from this autumn fall apart in the side garden; I'm hoping that maybe one of them will start growing over there this year, but I have a feeling that the Polar Vortex may have ruined those plans. Hopefully once spring rolls around, I'll be able to tell fairly quickly what's going on and move from that point.

I do plan on installing some florals (all graciously donated by friends & family who need to split up their gardens) to help the bees & add some color, and I'd like to grow some chives and bell peppers in a few outdoor pots so we can use them when we cook.

I would also like to install another mason bee house & possibly a bat house with a pup net to help encourage them to hang out to pollinate our plants & eat the mosquitoes, respectively. I have new ideas for the summer sign brewing as I type!

Cane back bench

I bought this guy for $30 late fall 2018, and I'm hoping to just reupholster it to make it more modern & clean. I just can't decide on a fabric to save my life. The current fabric is ok, but it's also old & filthy, and I can't remove it to wash it. I'm thinking about something that would be easy to wipe down, like leather or vinyl, but I'm lost on the color front. Dark? Light? Black? White?

Lane Acclaim set

I snagged these two guitar pick tables quite a while ago from a barn sale for $25. They're both pretty sturdy, but someone decided to paint the bottom of them white, which just isn't my thing. I'm hoping to strip them down, restore them as best as I can, and move them & the matching coffee table downstairs to be used in the rec room.

The coffee table also needs help, since it is ultra wobbly & someone got paint onto it at one of our craft nights. I'll be stripping & restoring that as well, and hopefully figuring out a way to fix the stability issues. It currently lives in our living room, but I have plans to replace it with the...

King Tut coffee table

This beauty has been one hell of a wicked ride. She's pretty much all done, but I need to save up a little bit of cash to splurge on a custom glass top so that kitties can't scratch it up & spills can't touch it. I can't wait to have it out and in use though, because it truly is a beautiful piece. I just don't want it to be immediately tainted like the Acclaim was.

I got it for free in horrible shape (as you can see), and took about a year to refinish it. Now it's just sitting in pieces in the house until I have the glass. I have to take the entire top into the glass shop since it isn't a perfect rectangle, and then I can put it all back together & we can start using it in the living room.

Cutting board side table

I nabbed this brand new cutting board at Goodwill for just a couple bucks, since part of the live edge was damaged (bottom/right). No biggie to me, that side can be put against the wall, and no one has to know. I plan on sanding the raw edge down and resealing it before popping some hairpin legs on it and calling it good. It might only be big enough for a medium sized plant or your phone & a glass of wine, but damn, it'll be cute!

Frosted windows/re-screening the doors

I would like to put more static cling up in a few of our windows, like I have in our bathroom & dining room. I'm thinking our kitchen sink window, bedroom windows (lower half), and both screen doors (lower half for the front door, top & bottom for the back). It's fairly cheap on Amazon, and it's totally rental friendly since it's a static cling that can be easily removed.

This will allow the light to still flow in, but will allow us to have some privacy (as you can tell in this bathroom photo, where it is installed on the lower panel of the window).
Plus, if Carl can't see through them, he might not be as interested in them & that means less nose prints to clean every week. Having the back door completely covered will block any sight lines from the road while letting the afternoon light stream in; having the lower half of the front door will allow Aaron & I to see outside to see who may be on our porch, but won't let Carl wig out about the squirrels 24/7.

I need to re-screen both of our doors, too. I have to entirely redo our back door since Carl literally jumped through it to get back into the house the year we got him (I'm so glad his separation anxiety has improved & that we got that eye fixed), but I also need to re-screen the front door since little kitty paws have pushed out the bottom. I plan on doing them a little looser this year so no-one's tiny paws can put holes in the bottom from stretching it; I want the breeze, not the bugs! This way they can all still look outside when we lift the glass panes to the top; we can get a breeze, but everyone stays in the house (and still no nose prints on the glass).

Finish the office

I'm so close to finishing Carl's room, I can feel it. I recently built a floating desk & placed a vintage rug in there, and those two things really have started to pull it together. While on vacation in MN, I thrifted this brand new Target chair for $30, and it fits in perfectly with my vision. Improving function in this space has really motivated me to get everything unnecessary out, and bring only the good stuff in.

I also just installed a modern coat rack (from Amazon) and hung up my massive steer skull that I picked up in Galena last year. The entry way to the room really sets the mood now & it's a great introduction to the entire vibe of the room.

I do want to get a heavy duty doorstop to keep the door pushed as far back as I can so that it doesn't feel as small as it is, but that's just a little finishing touch that can wait until I get all of the unnecessary "stuff" out; there's a lot of that in there right now, but it all needs to go down to the basement so that it can be properly sorted through as I totally declutter that space.

Jennah chair

I picked up this purple people seater (terrible joke, I know, but I couldn't resist) for 50% off at Goodwill this winter, and it only ended up costing me $2.14 after tax. I love spade back chairs, but I loved the bottom spindles even more, so it came home with me. As I'm writing this, it's actually still in the backseat of my car, waiting for me to take it inside. This seems like it'll be a fairly straightforward strip n' sand job with a follow up stain n' seal & new seat. The little bit of wood peeking through seems to still have the original finish in tact, and there aren't any obvious chunks missing or large gouges, so fingers crossed!

I'm hoping that the wood proves to be good underneath so I can keep it natural & do a nice black leather seat. If the wood turns out to be a total nightmare underneath (which I really hope it doesn't), I'll paint the chair itself a nice satin black & give it a camel colored Naugahyde seat.

Improve the basement

Notice I didn't say "finish" the basement. I know that with all of my other projects, that this one is probably not going to be finished. Right now, it needs to function as the "tornado room," where I can dump everything I'm unsure of, and then work through it all in one space. Seeing it all in one area will definitely help me pare down on items that we simply don't use or enjoy or need anymore. Kind of Marie Kondo style, but not really.

I would like to come up with an organized system for the process, but honestly with the amount of stuff I plan on getting rid of, this is going to be an ongoing project for quite some time. Maybe we'll have a terrible storm year again where I end up in the basement a lot due to tornado sirens & I'll be forced to get it done. Either way, I have plans for that entire level of our house to eventually make sense. But right now, I'd prefer the rest of the house to "make sense," so this area can suffer while I work through it.

Right now, I'm sorting through the house to get everything that's "iffy" into the basement., since it's still winter here, and I can't do anything outside but slip on the ice.

I think that getting the rest of the house to feel open & clean and organized will really motivate me to sort through the basement quicker & purge a lot more items than if I were going room by room. I can't even begin to tell you how long going through my clothing will take, so I'm trying to do that as I do the laundry. If it's "iffy," it goes into a bag or box. If I don't miss it for a month, away to donations it goes. I don't have time or patience to sit there and try everything on, so this process has been easy so far.

I know this list seems pretty hefty, considering my track record (haha), but I think I can get these projects done if I work on one each weekend once the weather is nicer. Saving up for the glass table top will definitely take some time, but once I have it, that'll be super quick. Each furniture project I can easily get done in two days, weather permitting, so I have no worries about those (it's just a matter of actually doing it, amirite?).


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