Monday, July 11, 2011

Operation Netflix...

So I know I said I’d post everyday for 30 days… and I know I didn’t post yesterday… but I have a good reason.  I don’t have internet at my house… no internet makes blogging difficult.  Normally I type the post up on the computer at home and then actually post it once I get to work.  But no work yesterday meant no blog post.  I know, I know, it’s the 21st century… who doesn’t have internet?  It sucks… but I have a good reason for that too.  I bought this little house in January and have been slowly remodeling it ever since.  Since I live by myself, and spend most days sitting in front of a computer in my office and most nights tearing something up at my house, internet (or cable TV for that matter) has not been a priority.  Plus, the bachelorette pad is really a construction zone and I keep thinking “as soon as I finish this project, I’ll get internet” or “as soon as I finish this, I’ll get cable.”  But then another project catches my attention and so far I have neither. 
So, since we have already established that I am a goal setter… I set myself a goal.  Don’t laugh, because I know how stupid this is… but at some point I have to just say, “Okay, I’m doing it.”  And that day is September 15th.  My motivation… a sales letter I received in the mail from Netflix.  If I sign up for Netflix before September 15th, then I get a free trial.  So that’s the last day there will be no internet or cable at my house.  I have left the Netflix letter in the middle of my kitchen island as a daily reminder of my goal.  I’m taking a vacation September 16-21, and it will be so nice to come home to a finished living room with a couch (which has been in the garage for seven months) and Netflix.  J
I suppose I should give you a little background on this project.  I came by this house super cheap.  It’s a 1300 ft² house on a nice city lot with a detached two-car garage.  Nothing fancy… just two bedrooms, one bathroom, hallway, living room, kitchen/dining room and utility room.  Perfect size for me, Khaos (my cat) and Kit (my car) to each have our own rooms.  J  Built in 1950, and last remodeled sometime in the 80s, it needed a little tender loving care.  But despite the cosmetic updates I wanted to do, the house was extremely well-built.  And here’s the kicker… it came with a two-story, two-unit apartment building behind it.  The house was originally listed for $119,000.  I offered the guy $75,000 and he took it… for the whole thing… house, garage and apartments.  What a deal!  Because I got it so cheap, the rental income generated from the apartments makes the place basically pay for itself. 
So, each month I have been slowing replacing things in the house, working towards making my little house a home.  I’ll try to do some posts in the future with details of the remodel and before and after pictures, but for now, we’ll focus on this weekend’s work.  This was really a cleanup weekend.  I didn’t do any major work on the house, but I did need to clear out some things.  When I bought the place, the detached garage was randomly a three-bedroom garage.  For some reason they had put up walls dividing the area into three separate spaces… one big enough for a car, the other like little offices.  While a friend knocked down the walls for me shortly after I moved in so that I could store my furniture and stuff in there while remodeling the house, there was still a lot of cleanup work to be done.  Removing carpet, moving some of the furniture into the house, getting rid of old wood removed from the house that I ended up not needing and trashing some old furniture left in one of the apartments when I bought it.  I was determined to get the garage cleaned out enough that I could park a second car in there… not because I have a second car… it’s just the principal really.  So I cleaned and cleaned and cleaned.  Not just the garage, but the downstairs apartment that I am also remodeling, the living room in the house I am preparing to put a new ceiling in and even the yard… but the garage was the primary goal and while I still have a few things to do in there, I am pleased to say that I now have a place for one of you to take shelter in a hail storm.  J
My garage is clean.  Yay!  My curb… not so much.  I hauled so much junk out there that the trash men are probably going to cut me off as a customer.  Here is a picture of what my curb looked like at about midday.  This was after some old couple rummaged through it and took a bunch of the wood, but before I made about 12 more trips carrying as much stuff as I could.
Thank goodness Monday is trash pickup day...
Can you believe I hauled all that by myself?  I can… but only because I can barely walk today.  Sometimes I think I’m stronger then I really am.  You should have seen me getting that king-size waterbed headboard from the apartment to the curb.  I pushed it… I pulled it… I even set on the ground with my back against it and pushed off the driveway with my heels to get it down there (picture that).  My back hates me right now.   
I also cleaned up around my back porch.  The lady who lived there before me clearly had a fascination with plants.  There were at least 37 flower pots with all mostly weeds in them due to abandonment by her and severe neglect by me scattered around the front and back yards.  Right by the back porch seemed to be the favorite spot to stack them.  You could barely get through the back gate due to all the crap.  It’s all gone now.  I kept one decorative flower pot that I transplanted all the still living flowers from the old pots into and sat on the deck next to the back door.  Everything else got cleaned out.  It was so nice to come home to the inviting back porch last night instead of the disgusting mess that has been there for the last several months.  I’ve been so focused on the inside of the house that I pretty much ignored the outside, but if I’d known how much better I would feel after completing this simple project, I would have done it months ago. 
It always amazes me how much accomplishment I feel when I actually get something completed.  Actually, the amazing part is that even knowing how much better I feel when I complete something, I still have lazy moments where I go days or even weeks without so much as looking at a screwdriver, despite all the work I need to do.  So after this weekend’s clean up session… I’m on a roll.  No more lazy Cassie… the work continues so I can meet my September goal.  Tonight I’m cleaning old insulation out of the attic to get ready and knock the old ceiling down in the living room… fun stuff.  But mark your calendars… on September 22nd, you can come over, sit on my couch (that will be in my living room) and catch up on all the episodes of my favorite TV shows I’ve missed for the last seven months courtesy of my Netflix free trial.  J

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