MONDAY was yet another snow day.  The temps were above freezing  by 7am…..but not by much…and there was still about 4-5″ of snow on the ground.  I enjoyed my morning at home….then around 1pm (it had warmed to almost 40 by then!) Trevor and I headed out.

We returned some supplies to Bi-Mart and picked up Kaboom bathroom cleaner for the shower/tub and Clorox Bleach pens for cleaning the tile grout in the kitchen.

Next stop was Miller paint for 2 more gallons of paint (the tan “felt” color so I could finish the Master Bathroom, and the “sandbox” beige color so we could finish the upstairs loft hallway).  I also picked up a $5.00 mis-mixed gallon to use as a primer base for the upstairs hall.  That should ensure good coverage of the REAL gallon when I decide to paint it!  Main Bathroom still needs another coat, but I’m waiting to see what we have left over first.  (Total gallons of paint purchased to date: 3 for the ceilings and trim, 7 gallons of felt, 3 gallons of sandbox, 1 gallon of kitchen cabinet paint, 1 gallon of the green to match, 1 gallon of the brown (fawn) to match = 13 gallons). Geez.

Trevor worked on putting the freshly scrubbed and clean outlet covers back on, then tackled scrubbing one of the shower walls with the Kaboom.  He says the Kaboom works awesome!   (I did tell him I’d pay him $10 to clean the shower).

Me, I started tackling the kitchen tile grout. The first section I focused on was the “broken tile wrap” around the kitchen peninsula:


I used the garment steamer to try to loosen up any grime, then sprayed it with hydrogen peroxide to see if that would ‘bleach’ the dark parts back to white.  I’d read that it works better than bleach.  Stay tuned on that.

Next was the tiny bar/counter extension in the Family Room.  I steamed it and then just wiped it dry and used the Clorox Bleach Pen.  It is almost as good as new!


The kitchen backsplash behind the stove- ugh.  DISGUSTING.  I used ENGINE degreaser to try to loosen up the yellow grease that was caked on.  And a tile brush (kind of like an oversized toothbrush), and steam, and more scrubbing and more degreasing spray.  I let it soak for a while and turned my attention to the kitchen drawers- one drawer had a broken guide/roller….and the other drawer had a broken guide/roller and was missing the other guide completely!  I removed the drawer guides from the no-longer-being-used-4-drawer-base-cabinet and used them to fix the others.  That was a little harder than I thought.  They were stapled on.

These things are OLD.



And so old!!  But I got them off and screwed them onto the drawers and all is well in the drawer glide world again.

Back to the grout behind the stove- I scrubbed and scrubbed and wiped and steamed and scrubbed and wiped…..and got the tile backsplash as clean as I could get it- just the far right-hand side of the stove….


I ran the bleach pen over it and headed out the door to take the kids to karate.  Trevor and I were only there for about 1.5 hours.  When I came back to the house- look!  It’s like new again!   LOVE the Clorox Bleach Pen!


Yay!  Only 2, 456 more square feet to go.  Kidding.  But it’s going to feel like that much.

It was 6pm when I got back to the house- Jim got there at the same time, he ate his dinner (I brought Carls Jr burgers) then started painting the upstairs loft hallway with the $5.00 mis-tinted paint (using as a primer).

Priority #1 for me: painting the master bathroom it’s 2nd coat of tan so that room can be DONE.  After that I focused on painting the backsides of the cabinet doors.  I got one coat on before I had to leave to pick up the kids from karate.

Jim worked on filling holes in all the trim.  

Trevor came back with me so he could finish cleaning the shower, and I got a second coat of paint on the cabinet door backsides.

We headed home just before 9pm. OH, and there was no change in the appearance of the grout in the broken-tile-wrapped peninsula.  The hydrogen peroxide did nothing.

So I sprayed it with 50% bleach before we left.  Stay tuned.

Total hours worked between the three of us: 8

TUESDAY I had brought more of the outlet covers home with me- they all look like this:


Every single one has been painted over- never removed.  Some are pink, others are blue, we have yellow, we have tan, and we have multiple colors! So I soaked them overnight in a bath of vinegar and hot water.


In the  morning I used a sponge and the paint came right off!  Some needed a little help from the side of a fork, but for the most part- it was easy work!  And how they are all clean!


Well, the batch that I brought home is clean- there’s still about 30 more to do!  I’m not sure why they have such chewed up edges though:


Whatever.  Nothing really surprises me in this house anymore.

After work…. the kids had dentist appointments so I wasn’t able to go over there until 6pm.  First task was to check the broken tile wrap….


No change.  Still looks just as bad.  50% bleach didn’t do anything. Ugh.

My priority for the night was to finish the backsides of all the cabinet doors (3rd coat of paint).  Then I focused on more grout cleaning.  But I looked up. The hood fan over the range was disgusting- like someone fried chicken twice a week for fifteen years and never cleaned it.  Yuck. The brown you see inside the fan housing- yeah, that was ALL OVER the whole underside of this thing.  I mean it- the sides, the back, the whole thing.  Disgusting.  It’s as good as new now!


Jim worked on painting all the loose trim that he’d taken upstairs to clean and fix up to be reinstalled.

And Jory had gone over earlier in the day and painted the upper banister.

Tuesday’s hours worked between the 3 of us: 8.5

WEDNESDAY I had brought home another batch of outlet covers and scrubbed them during the daytime.  Wednesdays are my late night and the kids have karate, too, so I didn’t have much time to spend over there. I managed to frog tape all the door/window/closet trim and get one coat of paint on it all- so I suppose THAT is progress.

At our last house we painted every inch of trim and every door and caulked every seam and edge to perfection.


 This time, eh, not so much.  No caulking planned, no filling gaps, and hoping a single coat of paint will make everything “good enough”.  

I’m using my tape trick to see what kind of results I can get.  Most of the bedrooms have trim that looks like this:


Multiple colors.  So I taped the wall and applied the wall color first….


After it dried I went over it with the white.  Stay tuned to see how it turns out!

Jim got another coat of paint on the loose trim upstairs, so that should be done now.  And Trevor came back with me after karate to scrub the shower floor.  

Total hours spent between the 3 of us: 6.5

THURSDAY I had a productive morning!  At my own home!

First up- the cabinet guy called, said he’d DELIVER the cabinet to the house for me this morning!  I was totally expecting to have to pick it up at the shop.  He also said he’d leave me a countertop-type top to make it easier for me to tile.  And he’ll send me an invoice.  I’m so glad we have the keypad entry- because anyone can come and go if they know the combination!

Second call was the carpet installer.  He guarantees me that they will install the carpet next week. Not sure when yet, as the carpet is en route and not available yet- but he promises me he’ll make it work.

Third call was the gutter guy- they are doing the gutters on Monday, arriving between 9-10am.  I have the day off, so that’s perfect!

After work, I had an appointment, the kids had karate, and Jim had a work dinner to attend.  I wanted to pick up my parents from the airport- so that meant no time at the house for me.    I did make  a stop at IKEA and picked up some dirt cheap curtain rods.  We’re keeping the doors off the closets in the two smaller bedrooms and offering curtain rods instead- they can choose drapes to match their decor.

Neither of us did any work at the house.  Jory went over and painted the upper hall for us though (needs to be done during daylight).

Total hours worked = 3