Wednesday, August 31, 2011

House Update and Laundry Room Makeover

Seamus and Calvin say hello!

It's hard to believe, but we've lived in Wilmington just shy of one month. In that time, we've done our best to make our more-than-slightly-disappointing rental house into a home. And even though it's felt more like four years than four weeks, I'm proud of the progress we've made. This past week, despite a hurricane and three days without power, a lot of things have finally come together in the most wonderful way.
  • We bought a new mattress (Queen sized, mostly for the dogs) and Nathan finished building two beautiful bed frames - one for our old mattress, now the guest bed, and one for our Queen. 
  • After getting the run around from AT&T since August 5th, I finally broke up with them and Time Warner was able to get us hooked up to the Internet on the first try, in less than an hour. (Great service, even if they had to call me four times to confirm the appointment and once after so I could rate my experience. For the record, the only negative was the excessive phone calls. Stop calling me!) 
  • Our house didn't come with a washing machine or a dryer so we scored a great set for super cheap on Craigslist as soon as we moved in... only to find the hook up for the washer was rotted to the point of no return. After three weeks of playing phone tag with our landlady and getting second opinions from plumbers, we finally have a fixed pipe and the ability to do laundry at home. For two people who sweat exercise like we do, this is definitely a necessity.
  • We ordered a couch from Ikea on August 5th. It was just delivered this past Friday, twenty days later. I don't know who was more excited - Seamus, or me! 
Nathan is still building furniture and many of the rooms in our home, while vastly improved, are not quite ready for blog stardom. The laundry room, however, is! Sure, it's not the most glamorous room in the house. But considering in our last home, the washing machine and dryer were stacked in the kitchen, next to the refrigerator, it's a huge improvement.

First, the before:

An empty square of a room. A rusted pipe in the corner. An ugly floor. A cabinet filled with random tubes, empty cigarette cartons, and containers of motor oil. Nothing much to write home about in it's initial state, but full of possibility.

And now, the after!

Ah. Much better! 

This washing machine and dryer set was listed on Craigslist for $250. However, when we arrived to pick it up from a man how lived in a fancy part of town, he knocked the price down to $200 just because. We didn't even ask! The machines work perfectly and I am so thrilled with the deal. I know large appliances on Craigslist are a gamble, but when you have very little money to spend on such luxuries, it's worth the risk.

One of the downsides of our house is the fact that the bedrooms have extremely minuscule closets. The guest bedroom's closet is mostly taken up with the water heater, so yeah - not exactly functional. We decided to hang two large wooden rods in the laundry room and make the most of this space by using it as a glorified closet, shared by Nathan and myself. A great solution and it makes putting away laundry very easy indeed.

And that concludes the first stop on the thrilling tour of our home improvement adventures! Never fear - there's plenty more to come.


  1. I looooove that you can wash and put away your clothes in the same room. How convenient and practical! :)

  2. It's so hard to feel like your home isn't exactly what you want. Kudos to you for making the best of it!

  3. Hurray for a great deal on Craigslist!  In-home laundry is a luxury indeed, but I think it's worth it.  I fed quarters to washing machines until I was 28, so I can imagine how important the appliance purchases were to you :-)

  4. Love the laundry closet!  We're going to end up doing that at our new house since we have very few closets (and apparently G owns far more clothes than me, hehe).  So glad everything is starting to shape up for you guys!

  5. Yes! Right now we have so much laundry that I am piling the clean stuff up on the bed and will put it all away later. But in the future, when laundry is more manageable, I will be able to put it away immediately! We still need to add a shelf for Nathan's t-shirt collection and he has promised to make me a nicer shoe holder. For now, I am just so thrilled to have clean clothes to wear!

  6. For all the complaining we did, we are actually starting to really like this house and appreciate it's quirks. That will show us to make snappy judgments! 

  7. SO worth it, especially when you're as busy and on the go as I tend to be. There is also something really comforting about hearing the low hum of the dryer in the background while I'm reading a book or working on a lesson plan. It makes my house feel more like a home for sure. 

  8. Our house was built in the 50's, and I guess people just didn't have a lot of clothes back then? The closets are seriously tiny and I have no idea how I would have fit my stuff in them if it wasn't for the huge and awkward laundry room. Close call!