; World of Dennifer: Spring Cleaning - Part I

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Spring Cleaning - Part I

The spring has sprung in the NOVA/DC Metro Area & in the World of Dennifer that means time to actually do some spring cleaning! I have decided to break up our spring cleaning this year into a few different areas:
  • Part I: exterior of the house - front & back yard, back deck & patio.
  • Part II: main level - entryway, living room, kitchen
  • Part III: upper level - both bedrooms (including closets), bathroom, attic
  • Part IV: lower level - basement, basement bath, under stairs storage area, utility storage area, laundry room.
I am going to be posting before/progress pics as we get thru each of the areas. We'll likely be doing each of the areas concurrently, but I'm going to post the "to do" lists & before pics in parts (so as to avoid a ridiculously LONG post). So, I'll start with Part I - the exterior since we actually got started with the work we want done on this area this past Friday.

Front Yard To Do's:

Last summer, we did a MAJOR clean up of what I lovingly called our "forest" - AKA our former front yard. It was a hot mess to say the least. We were sooo happy to see it cleaned up. I'm happy to report that even after the snowmageddon + the two other huge snow storms that hit our area this winter, our front yard/landscaping held up pretty well. We lost two of our little solar lights & the rest are all crooked, but still work! And as you can see from the photos above, parts of our grass were ruined. Also, as you can see in photo #1 - the Evergreen tree to the right of the house was damaged. So, on the spring cleaning to do list for this area of the house (crossed out are the items that have already been completed):
  • Trim branches on large tree away from house & from hanging low over stairs.
  • Trim off damaged parts of the evergreen & possibly remove tree completely (need HOA approval to do this).
  •  Plant grass seed, keep watered, cross fingers that it grows!
  • Pull up weeds in flower beds & around tree.
  • Plant annuals & re-mulch.
  • Get house & stairs power washed.
Back (upper level) Deck To Do's: 

We have never really done anything with our deck since buying the house three years ago. We have been waiting & waiting & WAITING for our HOA to approve some deck stain colors so that we can stain & seal the deck. It's badly in need of some TLC, but unfortunately we are under the rules of the HOA as to what we can do to the outside of our house. We plan on attending the next HOA meeting on May 11th to find out about their decision on the deck stain colors - urrg, it gets really frustrating with them sometimes.

We also purchased a really cheap patio table & chairs from K-Mart the first year we bought the house just to tide us over until we could afford to buy what we really wanted the following summer (2008). Well, three years later, we never bought a new set. It just was not high on our priority list, so it fell to the side. This year we may or may not get around to it, but the set we have will continue to do for now. I added it to the spring cleaning to do list for this area just in case we decide to purchase one this year:
  • Look for & purchase an outdoor dining set (we currently have a cheapo plastic set).
  • Get deck power washed.
  • Re-stain & seal the deck.
Back Yard & (lower level) Patio To Do's:

I was a little embarrassed to take before pictures of this area, but I also kinda forgot to take a picture before the work got started in the back. You can see a little of the forest pat deux in the deck photo above. It was pretty bad - I mean weeds, small bushes, small trees, etc. and none of it ever kept up. But to make up for that, I took some in progress pics:

Ahhhh, so clean, such a blank slate!

We hired an independent contractor (referred to us by my mom) to do some of the work around the outside of the house that we couldn't or didn't want to do ourselves. They cleaned out the back yard area, trimmed the trees up front & cleaned up all that stuff for $225. We thought that was an awesome price b/c we had gotten a quote last summer for $500 just to clear out the back yard! Here is the spring cleaning list for this area:
  • Get weeds, bushes, etc. removed from the area.
  • Get sod laid surrounding the patio.
  • Clean under the deck area, get rid of any debris in that area.
  • Fix exterior water spout (it has never worked since we bought the house; but we need it for the sod!!
  • Buy a small sitting/bistro set for the patio.
Now you see why I needed to break this up into several posts! And I still have three more areas left to make spring cleaning lists for! We are doing pretty good so far on our Part I & plan on getting even more done next weekend! Have you started on your spring cleaning yet?! I'd love to see what you've done so far!


Life Happens said...

Love the new blog makeover! Looks like you have some great ideas for spring cleaning around your house! You seem like such an organized person, can I hire you to help me organize my house??!!

Can't wait to see more pictures from your cleaning!