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How to spend the holiday breakMonday, December 29, 2008
We've got approximately two weeks before schools starts up again... whatever should we do? We hear that St. John in the US Virgin Islands is spectacular, and rather easy to get to from here... Perhaps we could head up to the mountains... Or, maybe we'll tackle another home project!

Yesterday we made a list of all the things that need to be done to finish up the girls' room, and as I was starting on one of those (making a new sill for the rear window - more details will be coming in a future blog entry), I started thinking about how nice it would be if our little basement shop was in better shape. I'm coming to realize that it's definitely much more fun to start on a new project than finish an old one!

Looking at the condition of the basement, we can see that the joists in this part of the basement had been painted at some point in the distant past, but it had never been kept up, so most of it had already flaked off (or was busy trying to figure out a way to do so). We'd like to paint these joists the same as we did in the rear of the basement, but that's going to require scraping off all/most of the old stuff...

Moving down to the wall, it's clear that they've been patched (and repatched, and repatched), but never completely finished like the back of the basement where we've got the pantry. There are areas that need patching, and we'd like to try to smooth things out a bit and put up a fresh coat of paint.

(The photo on the right was taken when we first moved in - hence the emptiness!)

Then there's the floor, which is simply 4-foot-by-4-foot concrete slabs. This also need to be patched in places, then we'd like to cover it with a coat of grey epoxy paint. Lastly, we want to improve the lighting and add more electrical outlets.

The first thing to be done was to remove our little shop, so now it looks like we're going to need to finish this project before we can get back to much of anything else! We also spent a solid day going to through all the items in the storage area at the front of the basement, resulting in a rather full carload of items going off to the local Salvation Army, and most of the rest moving up to the attic.

With the basement near to empty, we started working on the details, starting with the removal of our local branch of the telephone network - which could probably have served the entire block, if not more!

Then is was time to start making a serious mess by scraping down the joists...

More to come!

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