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apartment 9 diaries: day 3 and 4

March 27, 2013

First of all, if I turn into a piece of fried chicken (or die of a heart attack) before this project is finished, you shouldn’t be surprised. My new apartment complex is right next to a Kentucky Fried Chicken. So close, in fact, that you smell it every time you go in and out of the apartment. I’m not gonna lie, I’ve had fried chicken for dinner every night this week. And did you know that their honey packets are only seven percent real honey!? It’s actually called honey sauce on the packet, and the primary ingredient is high fructose corn syrup! It tastes amazing, but like I said, heart attack. Anyway, now that I’ve either completely grossed you out, or made you crave fried chicken, I’ll get back to the real reason for this post.

painting walls

I finally got around to the fun part of my project…painting! So far I’ve done two coats of white paint in the bathroom, and I also moved into my bedroom, where I painted one gray accent wall. I’ll post pictures of the finished product as soon as the paint is dry, but so far the walls are looking pretty good.

The best part though, is my bathroom countertop. I don’t think it gets much worse as far as ugly goes. It is hideous. So I spent the past few days researching countertops, and ways to update a laminate countertop. I found tons of ideas. It is amazing what people on a budget come up with to make their homes look nice. So using various tips and suggestions, I also made an attempt to transform my bathroom countertop. I’ll give more details later on exactly what I did, but I am thrilled with the results. The countertop already looks a hundred times better than it did before, and I’m not even finished!

My housemate came in for a peek at what I was working on and made the comment, “Wow! It looks so much different than before, it looks…happy!”

And I was.

apartment 9 diaries, day 2:

March 26, 2013

caulk

I woke up feeling extra sore. I guess all that hard core scrubbing, and crawling around on your knees to make sure the floor is deep cleaned, is more of a workout than I realized. Also, note to self: wear gloves the next time you plan to use harsh cleaning agents for twelve straight hours. The skin on my hands is completely raw. Fortunately I haven’t packed anything up yet, so lotion is readily available.

I had a pretty full day planned, so I didn’t get around to working on the apartment until later in the evening. But I did manage to make a little progress in my bathroom, which is where I am focusing my efforts at the moment. The first order of business is to paint the walls. Right now they are a dingy off-white, almost creamy yellow color, painted with a high-gloss paint. I know it’s supposed to make for easier cleaning of the walls, and especially to prevent mildew in the bathroom, but I really don’t like high-gloss paint, so it has got to go. I used a liquid sandpaper on all the bathroom walls to prep them for a fresh coat of paint. The last time I painted a wall, I had a very hard time getting clean lines in the corners, so this time, I did a little research and found that caulk in addition to painter’s tape was highly suggested. So I spent the rest of the evening taping off the doorframe, baseboards, and other odds and ends, and securing the tape with a thin layer of clear caulk. I’m anxious to see if I get sharper paint lines with this method. Another note to self: wear gloves the next time you plan to use caulk. It’s pretty sticky, and doesn’t come off very easily, even with soap and water.

If my hands survive this renovation, it will be a miracle.

facelift

March 25, 2013

This blog needs a serious facelift. I had to make a few changes that, for some reason, affected a large number of my photos and links.* Oh, to be more computer savvy!

Not only is this blog due for an update but also I am in the middle of moving once again; and, although my new apartment has lots of potential, it’s also in need of some work. So I figured that in conjunction with renovating my apartment, I would also work on giving this blog an overhaul. I don’t plan to make any big changes right away. I’m still bouncing around a few ideas, which I hope will begin to materialize over a period of time. But it’s cathartic to write, and what could be more appropriate than to write about the facelift I have in mind for my new apartment.

Day 1: Move-in Day! 

Saturday was the first day we had access to the new apartment. That meant cleaning, cleaning, cleaning. I cleaned my bathroom from top to bottom with bleach, Lysol, Windex…you name it, I probably used it.

After the bathroom, I moved on to the kitchen, and basically repeated the same cleaning process. I also tore out all of the old grimy contact paper that was in the drawers and cabinets, and vacuumed not only the back of the drawers but also the cabinets behind the drawers that were full of trash and other fallen particles.

I also sprayed for bugs using the good stuff, Bengal. I sprayed the bathrooms, kitchen, living room, closets, and all around the backyard. Yeah. That’s right. We have a backyard!!!

We moved all of my housemate’s stuff into the house, but it will stay in boxes until things are clean and fresh enough to put it all away. I haven’t moved anything in yet because: 1) I’m not on the same time crunch that she is as far as getting out of my former residence, and 2) I’ve got big plans for this apartment. Yay!

Below are a few, “before,” pictures of the apartment, including a few of the backyard:

IMG_20130325_022030 IMG_20130325_021543

IMG_20130325_021721 IMG_20130325_021643

IMG_20130325_021239

IMG_20130325_021337

* I try my best to give proper credit for all photos used that are not mine. If you happen to find your photo not credited properly, please let me know. I am working on updating the links that are not working properly due to the changes that were made.

a whole lot of nothing

June 25, 2012

This past weekend was the perfect ending to last week’s “unwind” theme. I didn’t do much of anything except sleep, read, and drink chocolate shakes.

I did spend a few hours at the office to finish up some busywork, and it’s a good thing, because this week we hit the ground running.

weekly happies

June 23, 2012

I apologize for the delayed posts this week. I was having internet troubles both at home and at work. Here are this week’s happies:

1) A chocolate frosty with french fries.
2) Enormous moons.
3) Packages in the mail.
4) Sleeping in until 1:30pm (see what you get when I post on a Saturday).
5) Summertime!

unwind week: batting cages

June 21, 2012

On top of a heavy workload, there are also those days at the office where pressure, frustration, and tension runs high. On those days, the best place to unwind is the batting cages. Gone are the simple days of little league batting practice, but that doesn’t make the batting cages any less fun. If anything, I actually have more of an appreciation for a place where you can concentrate on nothing more than connecting the bat to the ball, and releasing your frustrations with every hit. So after a long day of work, grab a bag of sunflower seeds, put on a helmet, and start swinging.

photo via katrinaaaac

unwind week: the beach

June 20, 2012

In honor of the first official day of summer, today’s method of unwinding is a trip to the beach! As the daylight hours have been getting longer and longer, there have been more and more opportunities to enjoy a few evening hours at the beach, even after a long day of work. There is nothing more relaxing than the sand between your toes as you listen to the crashing waves. Occasionally I’ll bring a book along on one of these evening excursions, but most of the time a hot drink, a beach blanket, and the sunset are all I need.

Now don’t be discouraged if the beach isn’t exactly an option as a place to unwind. Something about sitting by almost any body of water seems to have a calming effect; so find yourself a lake, a pond, even a swimming pool where you can sit outside for an hour or two with your hot drink (or, if you are located in an area where the temperature doesn’t drop much in the evenings, your refreshing iced tea), and enjoy your view of the water. And of course, if your office meetings and deadlines permit, there’s always the option of a weekend getaway for some extended unwinding on the beach.

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