Kitchen Living Room

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Dad's Alaska House

So by now I've been back home for exactly one week, and I'm ready to get started on posting all about the upgrades I made to my dad's house in Alaska. I traveled up there specifically to work on his house and of course spend time with him. I got a LOT done. The goal was to improve the quality of my dad's life through his home with a focus on comfort, cleanliness/tidiness, functionality, and personal details.

You might be thinking, "Why the heck doesn't your dad just do it himself?" And the answer is that he probably could if he really tried, but he works a lot and I LOVE to do this stuff, so it seemed like a good solution for me to just help him out.

I had a LOT of plans that went awry during the process. I even made mood boards for the rooms in his house (bathroom, living room, kitchen), but I didn't really use them AT ALL. I had planned to order things for him ahead of time and I have them waiting, but that didn't really work out. Really, only two things were ordered ahead of time by my dad himself - his dishwasher and a new bedroom suite (bed, nightstand, dresser/mirror) he picked out. Anyway you know what they say about the best laid plans and all that. Actually, I have no idea what people say because I forget. But I think it's something about them not working out. Mine sure didn't.

BUT, it ended up being OK. I worked with what I had in Fairbanks, Alaska, which was basically a huge grocery store/home goods store owned by Kroger, Fred Meyer, along with Walmart, Home Depot, and Lowe's. I hate to say it because I am a serious Target follower, but Walmart had a lot of key pieces that I really needed and for incredible prices.

When I first got to my dad's house, I began with a decluttering attempt. Um, yeah. I got really discouraged about two drawers in in the kitchen. Really. Discouraged. So then I moved on to greener snowier pastures  (it snowed almost everyday I was there!) and started working on light fixtures and curtains. But don't worry, I got to the clutter later on. I tried to follow a "plan" with all of my prrrrrrojects, but I ended up just having projects strewn everywhere. Including outside in the -5 F weather. Brrr.

Before I get to the nitty gritty details in later posts about each specific project, here's a list of what I accomplished overall:

  • Picked out and "supervised" the installation of a new kitchen faucet and dishwasher
  • Remade all of the wall lights on the main level including new glass shades and a new coat of paint
  • Replaced all other glass shades in the house
  • Installed three entirely new Edison-style ceiling light fixtures in the living room and kitchen
  • Decluttered the master bedroom closet and kitchen (Grammie organized the kitchen)
  • Cleaned and organized the fridge/freezer
  • Picked out new tabletop appliances & drinking glasses & teapot for the kitchen
  • Created a reading nook in the upstairs including a side table, lamp, and recliner
  • Put together new bookshelves for the upstairs (Grammie organized the comics & books)
  • Convinced my dad to bring home a vintage comic rack & moved it upstairs (Grammie filled it with comics!)
  • Cleaned
  • Put up curtains in the entry, master bathroom, living room, master bedroom, and guest bedroom including curtain rods (Grammie helped immensely in this department)
  • New shower curtains/rugs in master bathroom and guest bathroom
  • New toothbrush holder in guest bathroom
  • Constructed (put together) side table and new entertainment center for living room
  • Table lamp for living room
  • Framed & hung three posters that my dad already owned
  • Framed & hung multiple pictures (Grammie brought one for him of my brother and myself!)
  • Put together a bench for the arctic entry
  • Threw away a ton of garbage (old clothes, linens, etc)
  • New pillows/linens for the master bedroom and guest bedroom
  • New pet food/water bowls
  • "Supervised" the moving in of the new master bedroom suite & moved the old suite to the guest bedroom
  • New lamp for guest room
  • Cleaned the car

Bottom line: I had a ton of fun with my dad. I also got to see my Grammie (my mom's mom), my friend Amber (and meet her little baby, Micah!), Nanae, and some other friends in Fairbanks. What an awesome and, well, freezing cold trip!

I hope I remembered everything. Over the next few days (weeks?) I will be posting about these projects in detail with pictures!

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