Here is a flashback from our home in Small Town. One of the things I realized after we moved was all the free time I had. I had not realized the amount of time working on the house, thinking about working on the house, contemplating working on the house, and shopping for items so I could work on the house had been taking up over the weeks and months. I was sooooo happy when this project was completed…then we moved. 🙂 Hey, at least I got to enjoy it for a few months.
I am finally on to my last big project area – the garage. This is something I have been working on bit by bit over the past few months. First I painted all the walls in the fall, before the cold weather set in for winter. Then the area became a storage/project area.
Finally, a month or two ago, I was set about connecting the second garage door opener. A few weeks back we had gravel installed in order to allow me to enter the garage without driving through mud. It was a great feeling.
This past weekend, I wanted to start actually tackling setting up all the pieces to make it look like more of an organized area and less like a pile of half-finished projects.
Step 1: Move things away from the back wall and sweep the floor. I chose to start with the largest visual area for several reasons – it would give me a flat surface to work on, it would give me storage areas for the smaller items, it would free up floor space, and it would be a great motivator for later on when I start getting frustrated and depressed about how long this job is taking.
Step 2: Begin a list of all the things I need from the hardware store. It did not take long for me to realize I needed some items to finish up various parts of this organization project. For starters, one of my cabinets needs a new shelf inside before I can attach the counter top. A drawer needs a new bottom. I am looking to add a shelf between my two lower cabinets. The list kept getting longer, so I grabbed a pencil and paper and put it all down. Hopefully this will help reduce the number of trips to the store, as well as allow me to keep my eyes open for these items elsewhere (a.k.a. find them used or free).
Step 3: Set things up where they will be going. After moving things away from the back wall, which is where I am going to start, and cleaning up, I began to put things back into place where I will be wanting them to go. My mind’s eye had pretty much figured out what it wanted, but actually putting them there showed me a few problems.
For starters, there is an electrical conduit close to the floor. When this conduit reaches the corner, it makes a rounded turn. This prevents me from putting a cabinet all the way in the corner. I decided to leave about 6 inches between the cabinet and the wall, allowing me space to store my saw-horses. A problem just became a solution for another problem I was having – where to store larger items. Sometimes you need to step back and view things from a different angle.
Step 4: Place other items near where you think you want them. Not all of our old kitchen cabinets will be placed by the work bench. There are two smaller cabinets that I am going to use near the walk-out door. These will be great to keep things like deicer, ice scrapers, sunscreen, bug spray, and other season items we might need to grab quickly.
There are also several wire baskets I plan to use to help organize toys, as well as shelf supports I want to use in the laundry area. These are placed near those locations to help those steps go quicker. This also helps get things out of the way for the particular area I am working in at this time.
Step 5: Stop for lunch. This is often something I forget to do when working on a larger project. It is much easier for me to keep going. However, after a while I start to slow down, problems begin cropping up at each turn, and my kids get really whiny.
This time, before all the above happened, I called it time for lunch and put down all I was working on at the moment. Things were going well. Ending, and beginning, on a good note always helps.