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    Sunday, December 28, 2014

    House Picture Update

    We worked on some side projects this weekend - putting up exterior lights and organizing and cleaning the garage. There will be a separate post about the garage / work space but today I'd just like to post some pics of the transformation so far. 

    The plan for this week is to get the drywall in and, hopefully, get the windows installed. Let there be light!

    As for today- here's a bunch of pics of the process so far, Enjoy!

    Digging the trough for the plumbing

    Digging, digging, digging!

    Piles of dirt everywhere!

    After filling back the dirt and pouring cement and leveling the floor...looking good!

    Welcome to the gun-show!

    Planning out the bathroom before the plumbing goes in.

    Plumbing roughed in, insulated, and a very big work table

    No more front door!

    Bathroom laid out and rough plumbed in!

    Hello tiny tub! $30 Craigslist find - yay!

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Pink, warm, and fuzzy - insulation is up!

'Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house
the walls were all sealed with no room for a mouse.
We'd caulked and we'd spray foamed every nook and crack
I'd been bent over so long there was a stitch in my back;
The insulation was nestled all snug in its beds
and visions of drywall danced in our heads;
I wore my hoodie, Hubs donned a mask,
D wore both as he worked on each task...

Insulation is up folks! We have one window and are waiting for the last one to arrive just after Christmas. Of course, the one we are waiting on is the garden window. BTW the garden window has a name, courtesy of Hubs and the Venture Brothers, we are calling it the Sanctum Solarium

With the three of us working, the work went by pretty fast and we were finished in a day. That wasn't so fast that we didn't learn a few things:
  •   Buy more box cutters and razor blades than you think you need
  •   A clean work space is a happy workspace - (we moved the kitchen into the workshop to get it out of the way without damage)
  •   Don't touch your face!! - you got an itch? use a kleenex pulled from another room, don't touch your face, don't do it!
  •   Bring a change of clothes
  •   Don't leave your purse on the workbench because even if you don't touch it, it will be covered in tiny bits of insulation and that will get everywhere (don't touch your face!)
  •   Finally, music and ventilation make construction work soooo much better - we opened windows and doors and rocked out to the radio to whistle while we worked

Friday, December 19, 2014


Happy Yule to all!

Hubs and I have begun the process of DOWNSIZING! 
(that's a little exclamation mark but it is full of big excitement)

Today we went through the bookshelves, getting rid of dvd jewelcases, donating books, and recycling magazines. After so many years of moving year after year sometimes with only a suitcase and a smile, it is amazing to see how much stuff we have collected.

We got the apartment a little over 3 years ago after putting everything we owned into a Subaru Outback. The car was packed with guitars, books, clothes, the dog, pictures, bedding, canvases, art supplies, and many little trinkets that hold some sentimental meaning. Moving now, all that same stuff is proving to be the only stuff I'm willing to keep. 

Our motto for the move: Is it worth the weight?
Is the item worth - 
  •  cleaning it
  •  packing it
  •  moving it
  •  unpacking it
  •  finding a space for it in our tiny little home?
If something is not worth all those things, I have to ask if someone else would value it more, and if so - out it goes! I like imaging someone walking into a Goodwill and finding a book, necklace, or shirt of mine and getting a big smile, falling in love, and enjoying that item for the rest of that item's life. 

There are only two snags in this plan - the bathroom and the closet. 

Oh the bathroom - how I love an organized makeup drawer - how I love using every last drop of shampoo from a bottle - how I enjoy stocking up on vitamins, hair treatments, face masks, and eye gels! Unfortunatly for me, the result of all this is that the bathroom is full of almost used up bottles, jars and jars of fish oil and Vitamin D, conditioners, little jars, packets, and glass vials. 

I keep starting to work on it. It keep trying, but I'm not really getting anywhere. I can't give this stuff to Goodwill, and it is still usable - those vitamins are still good! *sigh*

The closet is HARD. I have a system of sorting clothes for the season and then wearing that seasons clothes pretty regularly. I can't go into my closet and see something I haven't worn in the past year. If I find something I don't like, or it is too worn, or it doesn't suit me any more - then I can get rid of it, but none of the clothes in my closet fit those categories! 

Still, I have more clothes than can fit in the tiny house. Something must be done - but I have no idea what it is. :-(

On a happy note - the one thing I don't have to downsize is my collection of glasses, and my first order from Zenni Optical came in today!! I ordered three pairs of prescription glasses from Zennioptical.com for my birthday. I was so nervous and thought maybe online glasses shopping would never work - but I adore all three pairs, they fit great, and the prescription is spot-on!

I had thought to use Warby Parker because I know some people who have used it and gotten those thick-framed hipster glasses and they seem pretty happy with them. Warby had a clean website, easy to use searching, and nice frames - but none of them suited my taste. 

If you like hipster square frames check them out, but if you enjoy cat-eye glasses, angles, and a variety of frame types Zenni may be a better bet.  

Zenni had a bit of a confusing website. I kept losing my search if I hit the back button, and it was annoying to keep typing the same search terms. Eventually I found several styles I liked - a red framed squared cat-eye, a turtleshell wavy thick-frame cat-eye, and the awesomest clear pink jelly frames. 

Using the prescription sheet from my last opticians visit I was able to easily enter my information, customize the lenses, and even put a purple tint on the pink frames to make them into a set of prescription sunglasses. 

All in all - it was a pretty painless process and I got three sets of glasses I completely adore for under $100 total. I'm hooked!

All three fit nicely into a converted shadowbox that hangs in the bathroom as a glasses display case!
In case you are wondering- there are 5 pairs of regular glasses there (not counting the ones on my face while I took the photo), a pair of black sunglasses with rhinestones, and the new pink jelly sunglasses. I have two other pairs of regular glasses and one other set of sunglasses. 

That's 8 sets of regular glasses and 3 set of sunglasses. 

Some people collect figurines of little cats, I change my glasses everyday.

Also - more pictures of the house!

No more front door! (This will be replaced with a window and siding)

The benefits of proper measuring. We measured on the floor all the built in kitchen cabinets and, in order to set the counter height exactly for the over-the-counter garden window, we built one of the smallest cabinets. Look at how close we got with the cabinet to where we had marked "edge of cabinet" - spot on!!

Hello electrician!

Just a record of the dust. There is sooo much dust and woodchips!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

December update

Good Yule Good People!

December is in full swing in Seattle with rain and grey skies and, special for tonight, high winds!
I wish I caught a picture of it, but there was a HUGE rainbow at about 3pm in the U-district.

Other recent events -

We bought windows - a 36" x 36" front window that will replace the front door, and a 36" x  36" garden window for above the sink. I adore garden windows with little orchids, herbs, and violets on them and I'm so thankful to get one! I worked out a trade, so I guess I didn't really buy it, but for trade I have to do all of D's Christmas shopping for his coworkers and family.

The garden window is made by Milgard in Tacoma. It should arrive December 27th and it'll be a great Christmas gift to the house! We went with the same white trim as seen in the picture below. The house has grey and white trim already and we intend to keep it that way even when we redo the siding next year.

Another awesome event was a visitation from the Amazing A last weekend. She came up from Arizona to celebrate a friend's birthday and spent a little time with the Venture-clique. It was great to spent some time catching up with her, showing her the house, and congratulating her on her recent success at becoming a Master Gardener. 

We went to the Kubota Gardens at the south of Seattle and wandered around picking berries and talking about plants, travels, plans, and adventures while she had the time. It was just lovely. Hi A! I miss you!
The amazing A and I

This week I have the plumber and electrician finishing up. Then the carpenter on Monday and Tuesday and then we are done for the holidays. When the windows arrive we will set those into the house and start setting up for finishing work - all the interior drywall, trim, patching and painting.

Slowly but surely February is coming...it will be move-in day before you know it!