Having a child means lots of toys every where all the time. Having an autistic child means having lots of every where and then having lots of patience to help them put those toys away.

For me, I’ve found having a system really helps, but doesn’t always work. Liam has containers with photos on them of the things that got back inside it, but that rarely happens. Instead, I go through his toys once a month and weed out things he doesn’t play with anymore. This also goes for his clothing too. I make him help me so that he learns the value of donating items, as well as the ability to discern what he needs and what he doesn’t. Continue reading

Coming Together

It has been almost two weeks now since I’ve had a refrigerator in my kitchen, and I can say I have greatly missed that appliances presence! I never knew how much I relied on my fridge being in my kitchen until the one I had up and died on me, and I had to figure out how to survive with only a freezer.

No easy feat for someone who has a 3-year-old that only drinks chocolate milk. Then I finally get my dream French door fridge delivered to my house with the knowledge that it will be in the garage for a few days, but then it will be back in my kitchen. Now, one week later, my dream fridge is still in the garage. Continue reading

Baseboards finally stained and up

So, I originally cut all the baseboards to size, but hadn’t gotten around to staining it or putting it up around my laundry room. However, the recent much needed rain storm currently making its way through northern California put a damper on my plans this weekend, which freed me up to catch up on household chores and of course, finally stain the baseboard for my laundry room

I used my miter box and saw to cut the baseboard down to size, before taking the pieces out to my covered patio to stain. I like water-based stains, like Minwax Color Express because they don’t have an odor for days after you finish staining the project and move it inside, and they dry quick. I used mahogany and a sponge craft brush to apply the stain.

Once it was applied, I waited about 30 minutes for it to dry and then brought them inside and used finished nails to attach them to the wall. The whole project took about 3 hours from start to finish, and looks amazing. After I add the finishing touches, like a new light, I’ll post picture of the finished laundry room.

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What a difference paint makes

Over the course of the past week my laundry room has slowly started to take shape, and I’m so excited!

I finally finished painting all the walls – that took about 4 days. Mostly because I decided to take a few breaks, but also because I had to do a lot of prep work to the walls before I could actually paint. Like repair the plaster after taking off previous baseboard, and then caulking around the floor and baseboard along the wall the window sits on. After discovering the type of nails used to attach it, I decided to take down only what was necessary for my project, which was most of it, but not the wall with the window. Why? Because once everything goes in, no one will notice it.

I didn’t realize how dark flat paint makes a room, even one painted a light neutral color, until I finished painting my laundry room in semi-gloss paint. And while the color is “Pretty Orchid”, which is like a pinky purple color, the laundry room is noticeably brighter! You can’t really tell in the photos, but trust me, the room is cheerful and bright!

After I got the floor, windows and baseboard sealed with new caulking, and finished painting the room, I added the new. slimmer baseboard, which I have pictures of. Then I put the washer and dryer back in their respective locations.

Today was the Super Bowl, but that didn’t stop me from measuring and cutting out the rest of the baseboard that I will stain mahogany tomorrow, and then attach. After the very one sided football game, I came home and attached “L” brackets to the desk, so I can also place that in the laundry room tomorrow too.

I was really expecting this makeover to take longer, but I feel like I’ll have it compete by the end of February.

I’ve included photos of the paint transformation. Tomorrow I’ll write a post about staining and attaching the baseboards, as well as how I fixed the desk.

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Laundry room makeover: Part 2

Well, today was the second day of working on my laundry room. It was also the second time I went to Lowe’s in as many days, and I’ll be back there tomorrow because I ran out of the spackle I was using to repair the plaster.

One of the things I’ve noticed when doing projects around my house is that there is the original work of the builders from 1957 when the house was constructed, and then there are the additions from people over the years, who didn’t always know what they were doing. And it was one of these well intentioned renovators who is making my current project more interesting.

I’m not sure how many of my readers out there have actually added base moulding to a room, but one typically uses finish nails. Those nails are small and easy to conceal. Those are not the nails that were used to install the base moulding in my laundry room, however.

Is everyone familiar with the nails used to build a fence? Well those large nails are what the industrious people used to attach the base board in the laundry room. Let me tell you, even carefully using a pry bar didn’t help mitigate the damage. Before I went over to my parent’s house to get the pry, I tried using a flat head screw driver and even a mason chisel.

The chisel worked on removing the moulding along one side of the door frame where they had attached the sliding door so that it wouldn’t crash into the light switch. After that it was pretty ineffective. So, I thought I’d head over to Lowe’s to buy the new smaller moulding, get a sample of the paint color for the walls, and some touch up white for the moulding. I was also going to get a pry bar, but forgot. Luckily, I went to my parent’s house for dinner and was able to get one from them.

Once I got home, I went to work on the moulding, and cleaning up the disgusting mess under both the washing machine and dryer. Then this morning, I used a sanding block – which was going too slow, so I pulled out the mouse sander – to help smooth the rough patches to make it easier to do plaster repair.

Then this morning, I finished cleaning up all the dust and wiping down the walls where I sanded to remove any excess dust. I started spackling the area by the door frame and the bottom part of the wall, but sadly, I ran out. So, tomorrow I will be running out to Lowe’s again to get more spackle, and will have the help of my friend Kyle. He will be assisting me in repairing the plaster, staining the new base board mahogany, and taping off the room to be painted “Pretty Orchid.”

Enjoy the photos of my work so far, and stay tuned for additional posts.

Laundry room makeover

So, I bought my home about two and a half years ago, and the laundry room was just never completed. I always viewed it as something I would get to once I got everything moved in.

Fast forward two years, and the laundry room still has no purpose, and is basically just a catch all for clutter. Sure, I do laundry in there and fold clothes. I store harmful chemicals out of reach from my son in a cabinet above the washing machine. But the space could be better utilized.

While it’s not the largest space in the world, it’s not too shabby. I was recently on Pinterest looking at different ideas, when I realized what I want to do. The room is about 10ish feet wide, by 7ish feet long. The washing machine and dryer are on opposite ends, leaving an almost four foot space in the middle.

At the moment there is nothing I can do about the location of the dryer, in the future I plan on buying a stackable washer and dryer, and putting them where the washing machine currently is. For now, I’m going to put a desk in between both machines, which will double as a craft/sewing and folding area. I was talking to my grandma over the weekend, and she has a desk she no longer needs because the area that holds the tower to a desktop computer broke, and she bought a new one.

She was going to take the old desk to the dump over this weekend, but if I want it I could have it. So, my son and I went for a visit and while there I checked to see if the desk would work. Good news – it is perfect for my needs and is 47 1/8″ long. After returning home, I grab my tape measure, confident the desk will fit the space, and discover the space between the two machines is 46 1/2″.

I didn’t fret because I thought I could just take a circular saw to one of the edges and trim it, but then I looked down at the molding and realized if I replace the current molding – 1″x2″s – with quarter round, like the rest of the house, I don’t have to trim off any part of the desk. Then I thought, well if I’m going to change the molding why not re-paint the entire space?

The current color is a depressing grey/taupe color. When I bought the house, the bank had had it freshly painted, but it felt sterile, so before we moved in, I painted the bedrooms cream and the living/dinning room a light tan color. I didn’t have the money at the time to paint the hallway, bathroom, kitchen or laundry room too, so I figured I’d just paint the rooms everyone would be in the most, but now is my chance to check another room off my to-do list.

So, over the next few months I will be re-doing my laundry room – paint, molding, shelving and possibly the floor too (We’ll see how ambitious I feel). Stay tuned for future posts as I update everyone on the progress, and show off different projects that will be part of the makeover.