Saturday, December 30, 2006

update on the home improvement

I have done a lot, but I haven't actually finished anything. That's ok—my list is a lot shorter and several appointments are scheduled for finishing the other things. For instance, on Wednesday Mr. Handyman will come out and rip out the large vanity (in the vanity area) and replace it with the one sitting in the room all ready to go. I would have done the ripping out myself, but I can't undo the plumbing (I'm strong, but I don't have good gripping power with my hands). Also, since I need the pipes hooked up in the other vanity (in the bathroom) I figured what the hell, have the person do it all. I have the faucet all installed and working (yay me) but the pipes don't line up and I can't figure out the correct size/connectors so I gave up. The following week, the shower/tub thing will be refinished (it's cheaper and easier than busting it out of the room and replacing it). The following week or so, the kitchen guy will replace the countertops and drop in a new sink. He's also going to bust out some cabinets in my laundry closet and replace them with shelves.

Remarkably, I'll still have money left over (thanks, Dad!) and will have the flooring done in the vanity area, bathroom, and kitchen. At that point, all that will really remain is touch-up painting and...

I'm getting a new range! I love to cook, and my oven is crap and the stovetop has those stupid electric coils and drip pans. So, for six months or so I'll live in a fine condo with hardwood floors and new, shiny things and a brand-new stove.

And then I'll sell it and move to some grad student apartment.

But here's the thing—I'm certainly not going to mind living in a less-nice place. I'm not a big "stuff" person—if you walked in my house right now you'd be surprised to know I've lived here for just-shy-of five years. I'm sort of a minimalist—not quite in the sense of that Absolutely Fabulous episode with the white room with white accessories, but close enough.

Getting a mortgage and a condo was an achievement, and a necessary one for tax purposes. Selling it will be necessary to fund the next stage in my life—I have to pay off my car, credit cards, and an old tax bill so that I have zero revolving monthly debts else this whole full-time student thing won't be possible. I consider myself very lucky to be able to do that. I would also like to thank the state lottery of Pennsylvania and its check to my father a few years back, and then of course my father for forgiving a ton of money I owed him.

In brief, I'm one of the luckiest people around not only to have a house, but to improve it, sell it, and move willy-nilly through the steps of doing whatever the heck I want to do in life. Happy birthday to me!