May 9, 2006

Yes, we have taken a break from blogging

So if you haven't noticed, we've taken a significant break from blogging, because we really have nothing that is as interesting as our cross country trip last summer to talk about.

The winter was dreary and dreadful, there is nothing more to say except it was bad.

Our new neighborhood? We love it here in Passyunk Square. Our new farmer's market on Passyunk & Tasker opens this week. We planted 100 new trees in the neighborhood with our neighbors two weeks ago. Two people we know are opening new restaurants on passyunk Avenue. Lots of stuff is going on. We're getting a carnival in our square this June. We're settling in and getting to know lots of young couples in the hood.

When do you get to see the house?
When Mike actually moves to Philly for good, we are going to have a big party/ open house to celebrate "our arrival in South Philly". We promise, you will be invited.

Our commuter marriage? We're hanging in there with it but thankfully we'll get a six month break from August 2006 - February 2007 when Mike will be on rotation in Philadelphia. Currently Mike is living it up because he is staying in our friends Joe and Walter's totally amazing house (complete with pool, gourmet kitchen and gorgeous furnishings) in the 16th Street heights neighborhood of DC. They are just the nicest to put him up for a few months.

How does Mike like his job? Mike likes his job. Likes the people. They love him. But he does not love the location- he wants to be back in Philly too. Currently, he's working at the EPA's office of Solid Waste (meaning: Materials) on creation of corporate-government recycling partnership programs. He's been traveling and getting some really interesting exposure to the industrial recycling opportunities and Green Building community too. His rotation in Philly will have him working in an office focused on helping create entrpreneurial and innovative ideas (right up his alley).

What are you doing these days? Oh, a little of this, a little of that. Still running my consulting business, but it is shifting into more HR Process and Business strategy type of work (versus training and instructional design). I am currently working on some projects for the family business, which is a neat type of learning experience. Other than the consulting stuff, I manage to stay pretty busy. My mom and I both paddle three days a week with our Dragon Boat team, the tsunami dragons. I am also getting more involved in my neighborhood and civic issues - I was very active in Charlottesville, and it just so happens that Passyunk Square is a very active community with lots of opportunities too. I believe that we all have a responsibility to display civic stewardship, so I plan to try to do my part. As for meeting new people here in Philly, I find that it happens when you are open to it, and willing to put yourself out there. So that's what I have been doing, and I have made several new prospective friends but I have also reconnected with some long lost ones from way back when.

Our house? Well it is coming along, slowly. Its been one year since we made the offer and we've been able to get almost all of the wallpaper down. There is only one small place left - the upstairs hallway - and then we will be wallpaper free! So here is what we have accomplished so far:
  • All wallpaper in downstairs removed
  • Carpets removed in Living room - Floors sanded and refinished.
  • All first floor walls primed and repainted (this is still in progress in the kitchen)
  • Lighting changed in dining room and kitchen
  • New top down bottom up shades on first floor
  • Wallpaper in both 2nd floor bedrooms removed, walls primed and painted. Carpet in master bedroom removed, floor painted (it wasn't in good shape).
  • Wallpaper in bathrooms removed, walls primed and painted (one bathroom still needs to be painted)
  • In the third floor front room, we painted the paneling and ceiling a crisp white. This is now one of the sunniest and most favorite rooms.
  • Chimney was lined
  • We saved our tree in front by cutting the hole around it bigger and mulching
  • Painted the front door a nice eggplanty color
Needless to say, it is finally beginning to look like our own kind of place rather than the shrine to Sicily that it was when the former tenants lived here. No gold busts anymore and the faux roman scroll wallpaper will all soon be gone. We still have a lot to accomplish though...Immediately, We have to reinforce basement joists ...then...

Floor 1:
  • Finish painting downstairs foyer ceiling and kitchen
  • Finish painting kitchen walls
  • Change doorknobs on first floor (slowly replacing with glass doorknobs of the period)
  • Install quarter round molding in Living room
  • Patch wood floor holes
  • Change out the front door (looking for a period door)
  • Change out the glass in the foyer door (etched glass instead of yellow beer bottle)
  • Change out glass window over front door (etched glass instead of beer bottle)
  • New rear entry door
  • Longer term: New wood flooring installed on entire first floor; some features of kitchen changed, Gas fireplace installed
Floor 2:
  • Finish master bedroom closet project
  • touch up and install quarter round in Master Bedroom
  • Find matching crown molding for hallway
  • Replace hallway closet door
  • Change out doorknobs (glass knobs)
  • Change out back bedroom door (hollow door doesn't match the rest)
  • Finish repainting back bathroom
  • Remove wallpaper in hallway
  • Paint hallway and staircase walls
  • Remove all remaining carpet from stairs
  • Sand and paint staircase in traditional style
  • Change out ceiling lights in all rooms
  • Recarpet the 2nd floor hallway and the staircases with new runner
  • Longer term: Install new hardwood in bedrooms; change out the shower and tiles in back bathroom; Change out vanity in front bathroom;
3rd floor
  • Paint Karin's office
  • Outfit Karin's office closet with built in desk space
  • Repaint; repair doors and replace knobs
  • Repair or replace skylight window and covering
  • Remove hall paneling and drop ceiling and restore hallway, staircase
  • New carpets on 3rd floor
  • Install a window/door where hall window currently resides
House Big Long Term Dreams
  • Build a Rooftop terrace
  • Replace front of house windows with wood windows and period panes
  • New wood floors throughout house
  • Hire architect to reconfigure kitchen spaces and create a landscaped kitchen garden
  • Open upstairs up to more light
  • 3rd floor redone as master suite
  • Hot tub on roof deck!
We'll be trying to make most of the reasonable stuff happen by the time year two in the house rolls around (August 2007). Ahh, if only we had a billion dollars!

1 comment:

Patrick Krause said...

Hey Karin, glad to read the updates. I check at least every other week. We're still trying to get a trip out there going...We'll keep you in the loop.