I wish I could say that I'm ready to move full steam ahead with my bathrooms and kitchen renovation but I'm not there yet.  These are big ticket items and the bad economy hasn't really cooperated with my saving plans.  Such is life.

I do have a few projects to keep me busy through the winter.  First is a makeover of the back bedroom.  When I first saw the house and the collection of little cottages that sit down the little alleyway along the garden side of my house, it reminded me Provincetown where cottage are packed tightly against the harbor.  This bedroom started off with a painted floor like the ones I'd seen painted with marine paint on Cape Cod.

This photo from a Martha Stewart Long Island beach home tour has floors that are probably painted with marine paint.

I got the look by painting the floor with Benjamin Moore Calypso Blue which is a slightly toned down version of the electric marine paint.  It's always gotten a great response but I can't help feel this Cape Cod B&B look doesn't quite fit in the house anymore.  

The wallpaper has also been a problem.  I originally did this room on a really low budget.  The wallpaper was about $10 a roll, the sheers are from ebay and the blinds are from Home Depot.  I don't know if it was the cheap wallpaper or the old paint but it's developed fairly large gaps at the seams.  Before the photo shoot, I had to spackle the seams in a few places because I was afraid they would show.  So that needs to come down.  I think I'll just go with paint since I've acknowledged and embraced my affliction of needing to redo rooms every few years.

I love painted floors and I'm hoping a new color scheme will achieve a totally different look.

One of Christmas presents was one of these gadgets:  a silent paint remover.  I first saw one on This Old House and Katy Eliot has mentioned using one to strip paint in her Colonial house in Marblehead, so I thought I would give it a try.  The device uses infrared bulbs to heat the paint and separate it from the wood surface.  It's supposed to be safer for the environment than using chemical strippers and I believe I can turn the scrapings for proper disposal at my city's recycling center.  It's probably best done on days when I can have windows open to exhaust any fumes.  I'll let you know how it works.

I'd like to learn how to sew (better).  As I've said in the past, my mother and aunt used to make many of their/our clothes so I grew up with a sewing machine set up somewhere in the house and am no stranger to using one but I've never done much more than a straight seam.  I'd love to be able to whip up a pillow cover or make a slipcover so I hope to work on that.  I had an old sewing machine that I used to make a lot projects for a course I took at Mass Art a few years ago and I ruined it sewing plastic and cardboard so I just bought a new one last year that's still in the box.

Further work on the kitchen and back porches call for window and door changes that require a variance from the city.  In the kitchen, for example, I'll have double windows over the sink and on the porch side, the windows will become french glass doors.  The kitchen window changes not only require a variance but they sit right where this old chimney is.  The chimney is no longer used but removing it will also require a repair to the siding, the soffit and the roof.  A lot of work for one window but winter will be a good time to get all the applications done and get that ball rolling since it takes a few months.

Recap posts and Advertising

I've been getting a lot e-mails from people asking about paint colors and sourcing for various things I've used in the house and it makes me realize I've not done a good job giving those details.  I see quite a bit of traffic coming in on certain posts.  People seem to like before and after images and I have quite a few so I'm going to be doing a series of before and after posts of each room in the house and try to give more sourcing information.  At the same time -- and I've avoided doing this for a long time -- I realize that I've gone through, and continue to go through, a process and gained a lot of information that's valuable to people.  As a result, I'm going to give advertising a try.  I put a lot of time and effort into the blog and if ads are related to my content and they're useful useful to people, it would be nice to get some revenue from that.

If anyone has any tips or advice on advertisting, it would be appreciated.

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Aside from these things, I really need to close the laptop and get my butt on the elliptical.  I won't be blogging about it.