Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Day 36 (the present): Mowing the lawn, and cleaning out the garage

I'm not about to pay someone to mow my lawn. Come on, I don't pay anyone to cut my hair, why would I get someone else to mow the lawn. The only problem with this is that I didn't own a lawn mower, and between the house and the wedding, it didn't look like I would be buying one soon. Luckily, the house came with one...This manual rotary mower came with the house. I mean, I think it came with the house when the original owner bought it in 1954. Modern genetically engineered suburban lawns, however, are much, much thicker and tougher than what they had in the 1950's when Wally and the Beav were using this mower to earn some extra cash to buy a catchers mitt. I mowed the front lawn with it, and area roughly 20' x 20' at the most. That took me three tries over the course of a week and a half, and I felt like I was going to die. It was as hard a shoveling snow. I suspect the blades aren't too sharp anymore. The blue thing leaning there is my other lawn mower, which I highly recommend if you are working on your golf game, but until you perfect your swing its hard to get an evenly trimmed lawn.

I also found this in the attic over the garage.Why the previous owner choose to save a dilapidated, rusted BBQ, and then went through the trouble of putting it int he garage I don't know. It must have sentimental value, or else maybe magic powers. In this picture it looks like its going to take a bite out of you when you go to flip the burgers.I'm pretty sure that this, along with all the old tube powered electronics that were up there were the making of a death ray. Possibly to shoot down planes, but maybe to take out the entire moon. I'm thinking something like this:

So since I needed a mower ASAP, before the lawn ceased to be a lawn and became a meadow, I went looking on Craigslist. What I really want is a Flymo Hover mower but they are rare, in this country at least. I think it may be a liability issue. Flymo's are all over Europe and have been made since the late 1950's.I did find this one for sale here in the states. But seeing as how I hate the environment so much, I find it hard to buy it from these hippies at http://www.greengardentools.com/
Now I am the, at least temporary, owner of a $40 electric mower of indeterminate age made by Sunbeam. I think it looks like a villian from the "Brave Little Toaster" movie, though I did add the googly eyes via photoshop.

Friday, October 3, 2008

Day three: demolicious!

As far as I can tell, the previous owner had been an employee in the aerospace industry somewhere around here. I found an ID badge from somewhere called Vega aircraft. At least I think that's what it said. When I find it again I'll post a picture. As far as hobbies go he was a Rock Hound, with a garage workshop for polishing, tumbling, and shaping them.
Besides that stuff, the garage was filled with the sad medical detritus of someone who got old, got sick and died at home. I still have a hospital bed, a wheel chair, a walker, a pair of crutches, and an invalid chair with built in commode

Now, I've had workshop envy for quite a few years now, In fact I tell people that I bought a garage, and Sam got the house, But there was no way my 1960 Chevy Parkwood was going to fit in the garage with the 4 walls of the workshop intact. So, like a bad tooth, it had to come out. It took about 2 hours of grunting and sweating and destruction, but with a little help from Nick we made short work of that wall.It took us longer to find an empty dumpster to chuck all the garbage into. If you need a hospital bed, walker, crutches, wheel chair or the like drop me a line. I think I'm going to keep the commode chair, its just the right height for sitting and working on motorcycles, and it rolls.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Day Two: Just some more pictures

Okay, on the second day we didn't get much done. I had to work. Sam did a lot of cleaning. Here are some more pictures of how the house looked when we moved in, or when we looked at it with the realtor.

Our nearly all original knotty pine kitchen with ranchcraft hardware, and faux exposed brick (and Steven our realtor).

Here is our dining room as furnished by the previous owners. We got to keep the the cute fake oil lamp. Its going to move to the kitchen when we redecorate.

Here is our awsome tri-tone green bathroom. Sam loves the wallpaper, but I think it is just one too many colors. And as I've said before, if anyone has a line on a green toilet drop me a note please.

Well, Sam didn't just clean. When I got home from work I found she had ripped all the bad wall-to-wall carpet out of the two bedrooms, and deposited in the drive way. This revealed some beautiful hardwood floors that had been cover for something like 50 years.

The Master Bedroom.

The Study.

The Trash.

As anyone who has done this sort of thing before will tell you, this pile is just the tip of the iceburg.

I apologize for the boring layouts, but I haven't had time to play with the blogger editor much, so I don't know what I'm doing.

Day one - part II: Stuff needs fixing

Before we could go any further certain things just could wait...

One of the toilets needed a new valve. And so I replaced what I'm certain is the first of many toilet valves. Those of you that know me know that one of the planks in my political platform is the derth of any decent quality tiolet valves for sale in this country today. In the last apartment, in less than five years, I replaced the toilet valve at least 3 times. It always seemed to be going bad, and then it would completely fail when we were having a party. So I've become adept at changing them even after having quite a few beers. When you only have one toilet, failure is not an option. Now with two bathrooms, this place is like the freakin' White House!

Oh, and by the way, check out our cool three tone green tile job. If anyone has a line on a jadite green toilet to match the tub and sink, drop me a note. Our's was yanked out recently and replaced with a low flow.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Day one: We get the keys!

Well, its actually been a full month now, today is September 29th, and we got the keys to our new home exactly 30 days ago. Myself, Woody, and my fiance Sam found ourselves the proud owners of a one owner 1953 Ranch style tract house in the Van Nuys neighborhood of Southern California's beautiful San Fernando Valley. The former owner was a little old lady who kept the place in fabulous condition, and hardly ever changed a thing, including the original cedar shake roof. We'll be getting to the roof later, for now we should start at the begining...