I got a little sidetracked with my last attempt at listing my non-resolutions for 2010.  As much as I wanted to turn the page on 2009, I guess reflecting on the good things that came out of the decade leading up to (and even including) it was sort of a healthy way to do it.

Could it be argued then, that rolling over unaccomplished to-do’s from 2009 into 2010 is an unhealthy way to start the year?  Call me sickly then, ’cause herewith is my list of home improvement goals from last year, with short status updates.  I figure it will give me equal parts satisfaction for completing the things I did, and incentive to finish up the things I didn’t.  Updates will be in blue.

  1. make a home improvement binder that includes measurements for each room, including windows, closets, floors, etc.  Also include contact numbers for repairmen, hardware store, etc.  (note: this is separate from my magazine ‘inspiration’ binder –  alright, binders.)  Haven’t done yet.  Still a great idea, though.
  2. strategize about deck issue (ugh, long story) No money in 2009 put this off.  Right now we’ve got about 1-2 feet of frozen snow on the deck, which should put the issue off for another few weeks if we’re lucky.

3. add post to top of driveway with better address signage.  Nope.  Not yet.

4. mudroom – a place to sit/put on boots/store hats.  I put a folding chair out there this year.  It seems to be working fine, though it’s only helpful to one person at a time.

Update: this comment was supposed to be funny, but it didn’t translate.  I really DID put a chair out there this year – a folding chair, at that – but the idea that I would count that as some kind of accomplishment is funny, right?  Or…maybe just pathetic.  Um, I’ll work on my delivery.

5. living room – couches? Yeah, what about those couches?

6. dining room – reupholster & reglue chairs.  I’m still holding out for Annie Selke.

7. dining room – table.  I did actually speak to my furniture-making friend about this.  It will be great when we have the money to commission him to do it.

8. living room/loft – tv solution. Anuj flips through the Best Buy flyer every Sunday remarking how flat screen prices are coming down.  That’s about as far as we’ve gotten there.

9. master – bed and mattress –  no more sleeping on the floor! Wait – we really did this one!  We got a Malm bed frame and mattress from IKEA in New Jersey, squeezed the boxes and plastic into the Subaru and drove it all the way up here only to discover the headboard was busted when we opened the box.  Nice.  A week and one hellacious trip to the IKEA returns department later, we got a new one back up here and put together.  Killed my back putting the damn slats together, but we got the adjustable ones, so that’s the price you pay.


The latex Engenes mattress is a bit firm for my taste (were we gonna have to return that, too?), but Anuj needs it for his back, so I’ve thrown a camping pad under my side of the bed and I think we’re all good.

10. master – paint. This is really going to happen.  I mean, look at that yellow.

11. upstairs bath – sconces. Another task accomplished!!  Anuj installed a double sconce in the Jill half of the Jack-n-Jill bathroom last fall.  Look out, 2010, ’cause Anuj might just do the Jack half next.

12. upstairs bath – solution for storing towels, etc.  Um, we’re gonna stick with what we’ve got for now.

13. upstairs hall – clean and line drawers of dresser.  Someday, someday.

14. upstairs bedroom(s) – replace trim. Anuj will do this in 2010.

15. upstairs bedroom(s) – paint. Our painter will do this in 2010.

16. basement bedroom – bed. The room is empty now because of the water damage from all the rain.  My Dad says he’ll show us how to make a french drain in the driveway this summer which should prevent any further damage.  So, no guests, or bed, down there until then.

17. basement bedroom – paint. See #15.

18. all bedrooms – update window treatments (IKEA?).  This is still on the list.  Our windows are the original awkwardly sized from 1975, which makes finding a solution difficult.  I’m either going to follow Anna’s lead and cut the Enje shades, or buy roman shades to size from Target.  There’s no way we’re going custom.

19. water heater – wait for it to die?  replace? Good question.

20.gutters?  repair? Dad fixed this for us this year.  Thanks Dad!  No more water running off the roof onto the side of the house.  Unfortunately, we still need to repair the chipped paint.

21. document improvements more regularly, and more professionally (my photos err on the blurry side)  Yes, we need a better camera.  Anuj has finally come on board to the idea, so we’ll see what 2010 brings.

Wow.  Did I mention that 2009 sucked?  Clearly we didn’t get a lot done.  Though as I’m writing this, I’m reminded of a few small (cheap) projects I completed but never blogged.  Maybe I will.  ‘Cause this feels pretty sad.  I know, we did a lot of entertaining, and hiking, and cooking this year, and that’s all really really good.  But our home is important to me, feeling comfy and happy and inspired inside it.

So I resolve to create more reasonable to-do lists in 2010.  And not publish the lists for all to see, so I can avoid embarrassment this time next year.  I’ll just post the projects as I do them with a big “ta da!” and you can all be impressed.


Oh, I forgot to mention that I discovered two other Columbia county homesteaders last year that I’d like to introduce you to: Ann at A Chicken in Every Granny Cart and Christine at Just off the Taconic.  Take a peek at their upstate/downstate adventures if you have a moment.  2009 hit them hard, too, but that doesn’t take away from their charm.  In fact, I find it slightly comforting to know that we’re not the only ones desperate to turn the page.

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