Fess up

So, we’ve all been hanging at home for the past seven months or so, and we’ve done lots of ‘stuff’ to keep busy.

Let’s share the ‘best’ and the ‘craziest’ thing we’ve done. I’ll go. πŸ™‚

We’ve actually done several inside and outside projects that have turned out well, but the #1 best on the list is purchasing and installing an electric fireplace in our family room. We have one with a mantle surround to hold a tv in the bedroom, and we’ve wanted one in the family room, but couldn’t really see a logical place for it.

I finally looked at our entertainment center one day and thought – how about taking the books out, moving the electronics, taking out the shelves and removing the doors. So, we did.

We measured and ordered a Dimplex model that would fit, slid it in, plugged it in, and we had heat and flames. (We bought a Dimplex unit because we have had that brand before, and it performs well.)

We tweaked it a little by adding a rectangular piece of embossed metal on the top that directs the heat away from the electronics and added two pieces of peg board that I painted black to match on the sides to fill out the empty space. Love it!

I’ve cleaned cupboards, closets, attic, garage, replaced drapes and a couple of area rugs, but this past weekend I decided to try and corral some cordsΒ  so I got rid of two gray surge protectors and got everything plugged into one black one to blend with the entertainment center.

At that point, I just had a laugh out loud moment and decided I had been home way too long if I was down to organizing my electronic cords. πŸ™‚ Although, if I’m being honest here, I will admit that a couple of months back I also purchased a new charging station and organized all those cords.

Now, fess up as to your best and funniest of your at home projects. Come on, let’s start the week with a chuckle. πŸ™‚

Stay well this week, the numbers are getting crazy out there.

By the way, the ‘+’ sign on my MG Instagram account just showed back up one day last week. I wish I had a logical explanation, but I don’t. πŸ™‚

 

About NewEnglandGardenAndThread

Master Gardener who enjoys gardening, quilting, photography, and traveling.
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88 Responses to Fess up

  1. Genius! For me too many “OH why did I do that?” moments since March but one great thing is my overall mental health is much better for having spent most of it at home working out in the sunshine and not caught up in political free for alls,

    We as American taxpayers will always lose, death and taxes, so who sits in the big white house doesn’t matter lol no term limits for congress that I can get excited for and for them to get whatever insurance they shove down upon us, so sunshine beats the worry these folks cause.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Dan Antion says:

    I have to rearrange the electronics in the family room downstairs, but I keep putting that off. Maybe this winter. I’d have to go with the spare trailer tire I wrote about. After 19 years, I finally crossed it off the list.

    The entertainment center looks really nice. Good job!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. You did a great job with the entertainment center and fireplace! My attempt at organizing started way back in April. I had two two-drawer filing cabinets that needed cleaning out. I was sure I could purge all the old stuff and fit everything into one cabinet. I succeeded in emptying one cabinet but still had some folders to go through and purge the oldest stuff. Those folders are still stacked up in no particular order waiting for me to get around to going through them and I have no idea where anything is!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. We’ve done odds and ends. The biggest aha moment was when my husband realized that a yard project was bigger than both of us and hired someone to do it. Ten years ago we would have worked our butts off and wrecked our backs on it. We’ve been adjusting our lives in many ways. I got rid of my large garden to be replaced by some pots or stand alone units in the spring. What we haven’t done was get caught up in the crazy in Washington. We have nearly worn “mute” off of the mute button. I don’t have a pretty project to show for my efforts but there has been progress in other ways.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Progress is good! Yes, as we mature there is more consideration given to a project on the front end because we have some physical limits we just can’t push past, and we don’t want to. My most challenging time is winter. If we stay home, I feel obligated to do my share of clearing snow, and snow shoveling is not my friend. It is the original thing that took me down the road of back surgery, and it continues to not work for me. So, then like any good woman who spent her childhood in Catholic schools, I have guilt every time it snows. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • Before I got married, my driveway went downhill. It wasn’t fun to shovel. During a large snowstorm, I would shovel every two hours so it wasn’t too bad. When I got married I swore I wouldn’t shovel snow again. Mostly I haven’t unless it’s to get to my bird feeders or very light. There comes a point where you have to think of your body.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Oddment says:

    Wow. That’s a beauty! What a perfect corner in which to ignore the winter — or the whole world, even better! Thanks for inviting us in! I think your artwork makes it even cozier than the fire does. I have no such bragging rights for this whole COVID plague. I think my second-biggest project was a marathon cookie-bake, and that was judged a success. My first biggest project was trying to stay sane, and the jury’s out on that one.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Joyce says:

      OmGosh lady, I always look for your comments because they are so cleverly written! β€œTrying to stay sane and the jury’s still out on that one!” Yep! Same here!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Well, now if we are going to talk sane, I can definitely say the jury is still out here on that topic. Maybe that’s why we all continue to blog because we have a community of those who are struggling with sanity. Love all my blogging friends, sane or otherwise. πŸ™‚ On to the topic of cookies, now there is an accomplishment!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Murphy's Law says:

        Not sure I’ve made any great accomplishment during this pandemic. Unless not having gone stark raving mad counts! There is nothing out of place in this house. NOTHING! Drawers, cabinets, closets would all pass military inspection. I’ve purged files and an assortment of “stuff” that even I don’t know why I kept it.

        Love your fireplace! How cozy and welcoming it looks. Enjoy the warmth on those cold winter days. And eat cookies and chocolate when you feel guilty that you’re not out there shoveling. You silly girl. Time to let it go and let someone else have fun shoveling!

        Ginger

        Liked by 1 person

      • I’m picturing that drill sergeant with white gloves giving you top marks for your cleaning, organizing, and purging. πŸ™‚ Cookies and chocolate sound pretty darn good, and I’ll keep that in mind for sure. πŸ™‚

        Like

      • Oddment says:

        I agree: homemade cookies ought never be underestimated as accomplishment. I also agree about bloggers — God bless ’em! What a great bunch!

        Liked by 1 person

    • Murphy's Law says:

      Lol!! I too love your witty, sometimes hysterical comments. “Trying to stay sane and the jury’s still out on that one” is a classic one-liner. You have a lot of people in your boat suffering from having gone over the top and round the bend! We’re all in good company!
      Ginger

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Ally Bean says:

    I like your new family room decor. It’s practical to add the fireplace and looks great.

    My best thing we’ve done is: we sorted through then created a file in our computer with all our favorite recipes. Then we printed the recipes using a largish font and put them in three-ring binders where they are neatly organized. Hallelujah!

    The funniest thing we’ve done is: on a fast trip to the grocery last spring I grabbed 2 packets of seeds for zinnias. I tossed the seeds in an empty planting bed behind some drift roses thinking the zinnias would be a 18″ – 24″ backdrop. Welp, apparently I picked seeds that were for some kind of monster zinnias. The darned things grew to over 5′ dominating the whole area. The poor roses spent most of the summer looking scared with bully zinnias hovering over them. Oops!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Joyce says:

      Now that’s a true LOL moment! Poor roses!

      Liked by 2 people

    • Congrats on your recipe binders because I’m still using a file folder. Hmm, maybe when it gets cold I should do that. πŸ™‚ I do thank you for the laugh thinking about the monster zinnias. They must have really loved that spot, but I’m guessing the roses were feeling a little intimidated. It reminds me of all those little markers that come in plants. You know the ones that tell you how tall they get and how far apart to plant them. That’s why gardeners never run out of things to do because we didn’t read them real well in the beginning. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  7. pbmgarden says:

    The entertainment center makeover looks great.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Sabiscuit says:

    Your home looks beautiful. 🧑

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Joyce says:

    I always love the glimpses you give us into your beautiful, classic home! I think you’re a bit too modest about how perfect it is! I visually gobbled up your kitchen shots when you remodeled, and also your porch when you hung your wall quilts. This setting is so perfectly cozy for a cold New England winter ahead!….reading, sewing, or just staring into space as I often find myself doing during these crazy times!
    I guess I do have a neurotic time killer to share after all…..with six cats, we need litter boxes! I’ve experimented with different sizes, locations, and litter brands. Cat owners will understand that it’s not easy to please the little buggers, so changes must be gradually introduced. A typical convo between me and hubby that would have non cat people calling for straight jackets would be: β€œSo, Mickey seems to like the linen closet location, and the pine scent. Charlie, on the other hand, looked worried and ran away when I sat him in it.” Yep. That’s us now…who’d ever have time for that nonsense before we were locked in here for months on end?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Now, if those 10 grandkids were still coming by all the time for festivities, those poor cats would be enduring generic brand litter and cardboard boxes. They’re probably enjoying all the time you are now devoting to them. πŸ™‚ I’m sitting here chuckling at the conversations that must be going on at your house. Does anyone like lavender scent, that’s my favorite. So, do you qualify as a ‘cat lady’ with 6 or does one need more to reach that category? πŸ™‚ You stay well and safe, my friend, and enjoy your grandkitties. πŸ™‚

      Like

      • Joyce says:

        I proudly call myself a β€œcrazy cat lady” at six! You reminded me of Brielle in first grade. She had to write a sentence using the word β€œtwenty.” Her sentence was β€œGrandma has twenty cats.”…..I was given the paper and intend to frame it! I think that, at six, the sky’s the limit on how many are really here for a kid her age!

        Liked by 1 person

  10. What a wonderful project, especially since cold weather and short days are coming and you will be patting yourself on the back all winter long! I finally put all my recipes into a family cookbook complete with stories and photographs of family and friends. It is 300 pages, and I joke that this is what a writer does when she has to keep her butt at home! I’ve also reorganized a lot of drawers, etc., most of which are all messed up again. I can also proudly announce that at one point in time last summer, all my ironing was up to date. Was, the operative word…

    Liked by 1 person

  11. bikerchick57 says:

    Hmmmm…since I was working from home for most of the last seven months, I didn’t have time to do many projects. Instead, I focused on bike riding, walking, laundry and picking up my messes. Once in retirement, though, my projects were more of the purchasing kind. I bought a sit/stand unit for my laptop, along with a wireless keyboard and mouse for the heavy-duty writing days. I also bought a Kindle and bought a few books that I am behind in reading. Next up is looking for a new food processor because I’ve been making oat flour for oat waffles and hope to start making my own sunflower butter and need something more heavy duty.

    I have had one other important project – giving myself time to be lazy and do nothing except play with Gibbs, read blog posts and watch mindless TV. That is a project I have enjoyed, Judy!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sit/stand unit for the laptop is extremely interesting. I’ve heard of desks but I’ll have to look one up and see what it looks like. Kindle question for you if you happen to know – can you download books from the library on Kindle? We eat sunbutter instead of peanut butter because we maintain a nut free house because my grandson is allergic. Yes, you are getting this retirement thing down – do what you want, when you want. Congrats!

      Like

      • bikerchick57 says:

        My sit/stand is same as a desk top, but where the keyboard sits, the platform is deep enough for a laptop. It’s a Flexispot.

        I haven’t looked into downloading books from the library, so I can’t answer that question, Judy.

        Liked by 1 person

  12. H-m-m-m! Aside from finishing my recent YA novel and working on a podcast? πŸ˜‰ How about stocking up on so much nonperishable food that my husband’s office now looks like a grocery store?

    Liked by 1 person

  13. The most accomplished things I have done during Covid were to organize my computer photo files and loose and keep off 12 pounds!! The strangest thing I have done is to replant the same small bed in front of my house three times. My neighborhood rabbits seem to love everything I put there, so this time I planted Crotons, which have large leaves. They will either leave them alone or choke on them. Either is fine with me!! Little b@#%$#@s Love the fireplace. You did a great job and I really like that painted brick wall.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. After several years we added Nutter, a cat in our lives. She is listed as a therapy cat so we can have her in our apartment. It has been a week of learning each other. Yesterday she let me know who the is boss. Good job on the electric fireplace as I am allergic to the sulfur in the smoke. Possible snow in the 10-day forecast. We had a couple of light frosts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Congrats on your family member, and I hope even though she’s the boss she is easy to get along with. 34 degrees this morning and 32 yesterday. We had snow north of us over the weekend. The electric fireplace is a good thing – no smoke, no pellets or wood to carry and nothing to clean up. πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Nancy says:

    Well, well, well aren’t you something! That turned out spectacular!
    I’ve been outside enjoying what the a Good Lord puts in front of me! Walking! Gardening! And we got out on the desert Jeep trails! It’s been wonderful.
    Since we are in a busier area then we are in Pennsylvania we have not been dining inside. And it’s too hot to sit outside at dinner time… so I’ve been cooking some great meals. And enjoying our evenings in our back yard oasis.
    Oh… I did clean my she shed one day! It took ALL DAY!
    Have a lovely week and enjoy that fire!

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I love that you repurposed your entertainment center so beautifully! I think sometimes we stop really seeing our rooms and decor when we’ve looked at them for a long time. I love those ah-ha moments when we start to see them again and decide that, with a few tweaks, they can work better for us.

    There is no shortage of projects around here – pandemic or no pandemic. My husband is a DIY-er so I usually get roped into helping him. My favorite project was a small one but had been on hold for way too long. A few years ago, I had a large canvas print made of one of my photos. It was on the wall but looked unfinished. We finally made a frame for it. Every time I look at it now it makes me happy.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Joanne Sisco says:

    You’ve been using your time at home very well. Nicely done … and you will get to appreciate the warmth of your handiwork all winter πŸ™‚ I laughed out loud at “I had been home way too long if I was down to organizing my electronic cords” πŸ˜†

    This has certainly been the year for us doing things around the house that have been neglected for a long time. This summer we had our back deck replaced (HALLELUJAH!!) and demolition starts next week on our bathroom … our only bathroom. Although we have a main floor washroom, we have only one bath/shower. Life is about to get very interesting πŸ™„

    Liked by 1 person

  18. Everything I can see looks great, Judy. Well done! I guess our best thing was moving to Arizona when we did (just as Covid was hitting) but it was also the craziest from a seasonal POV, as we were here for some record-breaking heat. Because we’re renting, we don’t have repairs to do but the best thing in the house was finally getting all (or almost all) of our art up on the wall where we can enjoy it! Best tech thing? After a ridiculous “discussion” on FB with one of my husband’s relatives (sort of political but completely overdone reaction by her to my response to a meme she posted [I was VERY careful what I said and how I said it}]), I’ve been 99.9% off FB and loving it. If I didn’t use Messenger to talk in real time with my s-i-l in France and a few others, I think I’d get off completely.

    Craziest thing? Believing the the plants Lowe’s had for sale in spring would actually grow in Arizona heat any time between April/May and September! I’d love to give them an earful.

    janet

    Liked by 1 person

    • You certainly had a huge accomplishment with your move during this pandemic, and to have your art up where you can enjoy it I’m sure is a real comfort. I have to admit that I’m at a point where I do not reply or comment on anything that is remotely associated with current events. Folks seem to be ready to self implode and any little spark sends them off like a rocket, and I don’t want to be the fuse. Quite a while ago, I made a very careful comment like you did and it backfired. Lesson learned. Even political posts from bloggers that I care very much about send me in the opposite direction. I hit ‘like’ to show them I read it, but do not comment. Plants at the big box stores could be a post all by themselves. Here in cold country, they start selling tomato plants in April, and as I watch people walk out with them, I know they’ll be back in a couple of weeks buying more. Stay well.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. germac4 says:

    Great job on your entertainment centre Judy, the electric fireplace looks very cosy and warming. I will have to show that photo to my neighbour. She and her husband installed an electric fireplace in their holiday house at the coast and we have spent many a winter’s evening sitting around that fire.

    The most time consuming job I have done is to take all the photos out of photo albums, labelled and sorted into small neat plastic boxes that fit into a fire-proof box. (all our recent photos are on a Hard Drive or USB.) It is hard to know whether to scan them all over time onto a Hard Drive. I have read that archivists now think paper/photos may last longer than the various ways of storing them electronically…..who knows?

    Enjoy your lovely warm fireplace.

    Liked by 1 person

  20. The best thing I’ve done during Covid is make a beautiful quilt for our new grandbaby, due at any moment now. I have to explain that I hadn’t made a quilt for several years and finished my last UFO in 2017. I’d decided I probably wouldn’t be making any more quilts and then along came a pregnancy! I got out a collection of fabrics I’d had for ages, in pinks, blues and greens with chocolate brown in all of them and away I went. The top was pieced in a week and I still had a heap of fabric left so I decided to piece the back as well which means it’s beautiful on both sides. Usually I hand quilt but I wanted this quilt to be used and loved so I sent it off to the machine quilter. It’s been bound, ready and waiting now since August. I’ll be so excited to give it to our new baby when he/she arrives.

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Ingrid says:

    The entertainment center turned out great. I helped my sister-in-law do a similar setup with an electric fireplace and bookshelves. I’ve been painting, cleaning out cabinets, and reorganizing.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Eliza Waters says:

    Looks terrific and I bet it is super cozy. Your productivity puts me to shame! I’ve done so little around the house, but I picked up more work this season and am still working garden jobs. One client took a direct hit on that last storm and the clean-up will take weeks. Rather heartwrenching to see what that wind did in such a short time.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Love the fireplace and surroundings! My husband and I are both working full time from home, but that has made it feasible to do some long-overdue house renovation/restoration projects. Our house was built in 1905 and has all the charm and issues that come with that. We just got all the electricity updated in the last section of the house where we hadn’t done that yet. We also added ceiling fixtures to three bedrooms that didn’t have them.

    We’ve had leaks some time ago from elderly — vintage? — plumbing through our real plaster ceilings in both dining room and living room, and we’re finally getting everything repaired because we’re onsite to supervise. We need woodwork repairs and total repainting done outside, which will start this week. Plumbing demolition has begun (through said ceilings) and plumber and plasterer are lined up for this fall. Rugs will be taken up and cleaned while that is going on. Furniture has been moved. Plastic tarps have been spread. Basically, the ground floor of my house is a total mess. We have a storage unit for the first time ever, to absorb things that have to be put out of the way as well as furnishings from two young adult daughters’ apartments, since they moved back in with us this summer. Which was necessary, and a joy! but brought lots of stuff. There are still a few undisturbed locations in the house where we can do our day jobs, luckily.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think you win the award for the busiest for sure. Wow – that’s a lot of projects and they come with a price tag so it’s good you’re both working from home. πŸ™‚ When you get all that done, you’re going to still have the charm of your historic house but with all the modern conveniences, and that will be a good thing for you for many years to come. Storage units do come in handy with large projects like you have and daughter’s and their furnishings. I bet they appreciate Mom and Dad being there for them this year, and I can only imagine how much you enjoy their company. I hope each and every project comes out even better than you hope.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. Karen says:

    Love how creative you two were using the entertainment center to house the electric fireplace…it looks great. I was talking to a friend just the other day and she was telling me about her new Kindle. Yes, you can download books from the library onto you Kindle…at least she does from our local library here in Florida.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. tobyo says:

    Greetings! Great job on the fireplace! I found your blog via a comment you made on another blog I follow. anything with “garden” in the title piques my interest so I hopped over here and am liking what I see. I don’t really have a project that I’ve completed while at home but because of the pandemic I was offered an early retirement incentive and I took it!! So now I have more time to blog, whee!! Nice to meet you and I look forward to checking out more of your blog.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Your kitchen and bathroom projects sure turned out well! Retirement incentives are a good thing, and the blogging community is a great place to spend more time. Thanks sincerely for stopping by. πŸ™‚

      Like

      • tobyo says:

        Thanks!! I have so missed blogging. I had a pretty stressful job at the U so I’m happy to be done with that chapter! Really looking forward to more blogging (oh, did I say that already? ha!)

        Liked by 1 person

  26. joey says:

    That’s clever! A couple I know bought the BIG one, with the mantle and they love it so much, we’ve talked about getting one too. Yours looks much more practical for our bungalow life. We have a tabletop space heater we break out in the winter, and it’s effective, if unsightly πŸ˜‰
    (We have a diva furnace, as you may recall. So we actually have three space heaters, just in case!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hello Joey – Glad to hear from you and hope you all are well. πŸ™‚ We love this little guy and we had the effective but unsightly space heater too. You always needs options. Hope home and work are both going well or as well as it can in this crazy year.

      Liked by 1 person

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