Friday, March 29, 2013

Operation Listing: Clean Machine

I'm not by nature a clean person.  

No, not hazardously dirty...we're not talking maggots or mold or critters moving in without my notice.  I'm just more of a surface cleaner with a mild hoarding condition.  Whose house sometimes looks like a tornado of fabric and sequins went tearing through.

To get our house in peak condition for sale, I needed to pull myself together and clean down to the bones.

There were two items that rocked my world during the process.

1. Old English

Nope, in the 8 years in that house, I had never Old Englished anything. Not a single cupboard or piece of furniture.

I'm certain that is why the kitchen cupboards and bathroom vanities all looked so rejuvenated after a good buffing.

This photo doesn't capture the transformation as I had hoped, but it does clearly show months (or years) old food splatter that was wiped off in the process.  Don't judge me.

Some of those 'daily cleaning plans' I've seen on Pinterest since then have Old English/wood polishing down for ever week.  

Not a chance in hell.  I'll shoot for anually-ish.

I wish I could have an Oprah moment and tell you to look under your chair to find your very own.  You get a steamer. You get a steamer. You get a steamer!

I steamed everything that wouldn't melt.

Steamed the oven, the counters, the tiles.

Who knew my grout wasn't black?!

Steamed the toilets, the patio, the dried crud around the windows.

The nasty shower doors and the scum they left behind in the tracks.

I did have to use Scrubbing Bubbles to help remove the shower door mineral build up.  If I had to do it again I would try vinegar.  

Steamed the grill a little bit too, even though it was going to be covered.  I just couldn't stop. And yes I threw away the toilet tip when I was done cleaning them.

The steam climax came from cleaning the vent cover leading to the air handler in our upstairs hallway.  My previous attempts just pushed the shmutz around.  Not the steamer. Steam attack with an easy wipe off.

Booyah!  Suck it vent cover!

No, literally. Please, suck the dust and stagnant air out of the house.

Need to acquaint yourself with our house and the progress so far?  Here are the links:

Friday, March 22, 2013

Meet Millie

I got dressed up yesterday.  

Nothing fancy.  Honestly, more 'Jackie O. Casual'.  Tailored black jeans, hair down, cute flats and lipstick.  But a big leap from my typical Elastic Waistband Thursdays.  All that primp to go pick up a chair I found on Craigslist.

It all felt like the right thing to do.  In part, because Libby, the seller, started one of our email correspondences with, I wouldn’t just sell this chair to ANYONE! My grandmother was quite the lady! I was headed to a Craigslist interview. This was my sale to lose.

The antique seat was in the patio area when I pulled into Libby's Fountain Hills driveway. Next to it, a picture of Millie (aka Grandma) with Libby's dad.  Milly perfectly adorned in a flapper dress and pearls.

This purchase was a package deal. The chair and the spirit of Millie. All or nothing. No breaking the set.

Millie, the woman possessing inordinate dazzle for a girl born before the turn of the 20th century in prairie drenched Indiana.  A woman whose hat, gloves and purse always matched.  A woman who had four marriages, three husbands and one handsome child.

Yes, you read that right, one man got a second chance.

Also, a described super Lutheran. Which, I can assume from my own Lutheran upbringing means that each church goer knew which pew position was hers and she brought in a casserole for every single churchly event. Every. One.

I accepted the deal and gave Libby $50 for a treasure and a priceless spirit.

What am I going to do with it?  Where am I going to put it?  I'm not sure.  Perhaps a nice Reformation red in Millie's honor.

Millie had it in her bedroom.  Where maybe she prayed each night for her son's gentlemanly growth, or for cloche hats to come back into style, or for Bernice to have her 15 cats removed before she hosts Ladies Aid next Thursday because her Jell-O cake recipe does not call for mounds of Persian cat hair.

Who knows.  

I guess only Millie.  

I'll keep you posted on the transformation.  But, I can tell you right now that regardless of how it turns out, the money was well spent just to know her. Millie, The Super Lutheran.

Monday, March 18, 2013

Coffee Talk

Let's pretend it hasn't been months since I've been around.

I won't bore you with any lame excuses rationalizing my absence. And no empty promises about how I'm going to be better at keeping in touch in the future.

We'll use this moment to catch up a little like the old friends that we are.

And two mugs of coffee that told us that they needed at least halfsies with Kahlua today.  You're the boss Mr. Mug. You're the boss.

First things first, I have a new favorite game.

Cards Against Humanity. Have you played it? Its like Apples to Apples for horrible people.

This only give you a glimmering of the distastefulness:

Even better is that their website tells you how to make your own version.

Because really...what sounds more pleasant than dredging up every horrible awful from years past and making your friends/accomplices relive it all over again at a dinner party? Nothing. And I can't wait.

Don't worry. I won't bring up that time you sharted at the mall.  Still our little secret.

I still have more about Operation Listing, but yes, we did move.  Did you get the combination Christmas and Change of address card we sent?

No need to call Animal Protective Services - it is Photoshopped. Oh, wait. You were talking about the sweater and bow-tie?  That's for real.  Make the call.

I'll give you a tour of the new place soon. And don't worry.  I won't paint over the kitchen stenciling without you.

And before I go, I just finished reading Gone Girl. Do you want to read it? Be the first to leave a comment and I will totally send it to you.

And another thing.

I really did miss you.