Our two-car caravan took two days to make the trip from south Florida to the mountain house in western North Carolina. We arrived at the house today, mid-afternoon. The first order of business was to turn on the heat and the water. The heat was turned off since late December and the plumber drained the pipes and winterized the plumbing the day after we left. Even so, we crossed our fingers when we turned on the water, hoping that after this year’s tough winter all the plumbing had survived intact. Hurray! No broken pipes or leaks!
Both cars were packed to the max for the trip. In fact we even left a few items behind at my brother’s house, to be retrieved the next time we visit. After turning on the heat and water, we unloaded the cars, piling the new stuff alongside the stacks of boxes and other items already waiting to be unpacked since December.
When we were last here (in December), we had planned to focus on customizing the bedroom closets to maximize storage. The bedroom closet shelving and hang bars were removed during the house renovation and haven’t yet been replaced. The closets, like pretty much everything else in this house, are not standard (rectangular) closets. The bedroom closets contain angles that make installation of shelving or even a hang bar challenging. Nothing is straightforward. Figuring out an appropriate configuration to maximize storage possibilities and determining how to achieve that configuration given the sloping walls and unusual angles takes time. So does the installation.
Our December plan to remedy the empty closet situation was thwarted due to bouts with several infirmities that struck both my Handy Hubby and me during our stay, not to mention the Christmas holiday. We did manage to complete installation of the master bedroom closet system but had to postpone the work on the other closets.
Completion of the bedroom closet customization is priority number one, because until we actually have them complete, many of our possessions can’t be unpacked because there’s no place to put them.
We also need to reconfigure the pantry. The pantry is our second priority. The pantry will undergo a complete make-over. We’ll remove the old vinyl flooring and lay tile. We’ll remove and replace the old baseboard. We’ll repaint everything and then replace the wire shelving with wood shelving and custom-designed built-in storage that takes advantage of all available space. Can’t wait to have an improved pantry!
We want to replace the wire shelving in the two downstairs linen closets with deeper wood shelving to increase storage capacity in these areas. Our front-loading washer and dryer brought from Florida (currently in our storage unit) will replace the top load appliances currently in this house. In order for the front-load appliances to fit into the laundry room (really a laundry closet inside the outer potion of the downstairs bathroom) it requires removal of the wood shelving currently above these appliances because these shelves are hung too low. Although the current shelves must be removed, we will need to replace them with some kind of storage cabinetry or shelving.
We still need to purchase furniture for the master bedroom. And there is a bit of finishing work still to do in the master bath. We had the drywall textured and installed a skylight. The skylight needs trim, two doors need to be installed, we need to install a glass shower door, and the whole room needs to be painted. Those things will make the bathroom functional. Later on we want to make some decorative changes.
In addition to these interior priorities, we need to work a bit outside the house. Because it was previously a vacation home, the landscaping was sparse and low-maintenance. Some of the landscaping was damaged during the exterior renovation work…replacing the roof, siding, and decks. Now, we want to enhance the quantity and variety of the landscaping. We need to learn what plants will do well in our location. Mr. MT Nest is extremely knowledgeable about plants that thrive in south Florida, but neither of us knows much about what does well in western NC. In addition to landscaping, we also need to add some exterior storage capacity and address our uneven driveway.
This is quite a To Do List, but as lengthy as it is, it is not an exhaustive list. Once these things are completed, we’ll be able to focus on the fun stuff… like decor!