The To-Do List

Posted on October 3, 2011. Filed under: Home, Newlywed |

I love to-do lists. I think I rely on them more than food, water, and shelter. And that’s sad. In college, I wrote down every single task in my planner. Once I graduated, I carried around a weekly to-do sheet. It had everything on there: laundry, gym time (this is beginning to sound like Jersey Shore), call the insurance company, go to the grocery store, etc. Anal retentive? Me? No, no, no. I found a system and it works for me. If I forget to do something because I didn’t write it down, I get stressed. Can you tell I’m Type A? Now, I rely so heavily on the list that if something isn’t on there, it doesn’t exist.

So what happens when you buy a 47-year-old house? You make an extremely long to-do list. The House To-Do List is completely separate from my everyday to-do list. With the everyday list, I plan things out on a weekly basis. The house list is going to be over the course of years and years – something I have to remind myself constantly. We were lucky because there’s nothing wrong with our home. Everything works. The plumbing, wiring, insulation, HVAC, and windows are all functioning and most are new. But it needs some updating and we want to make changes that will make it our own. We are up to the challenge. We’re already rolling up our sleeves and turning our house into a home. There are tons of things on here that we’ve already checked off that I haven’t shared with you. Hopefully, I’ll get back to blog business in the next few weeks and post some pictures of our progress. Things have been so busy with work, house stuff, yard chores, and fun times with friends that I haven’t had a spare moment to blog about our busy lives. So here’s the To-Do List in all its glory in case you’d like to see. Crossing off some of those items gave me such an endorphin rush.

1.      Replace washers in bathtub in hall bath

2.      Curtains for the living room, dining room, office, guest bedroom, guest bedroom, master bedroom, family room, kitchen, etc.

  • Navy and green flat-lined roman shade for windows in kitchen – need rods extended out on L-brackets or just ring screws with a hook on curtain
  • o   Spray paint black curtain rods
  • o   Pillow covers for throws in family room: 2 yellow, 1 turquoise, tan/brown/ivory

3.      Blinds for kitchen, master bedroom and bath, den

4.      Paint living room (Parchment Paper), office, kitchen (Behr Topiary Tint), master bedroom (Valspar lament blue), guest bedroom (Valspar Cincinnatian Hotel Taupe), guest bedroom, main, upstairs and downstairs hallways, master closet, pantry

5.      Stencil living room – in progress

6.      Trim branches off of utility lines

7.      Treat deck

8.      Purchase and install new light fixture for over master sink

9.      Replace the hardware on the built-in shelves in family room

10.  Paint the front door and shutters – maybe shutters a dark green and front door Valspar Allen & Roth Front Door Red

11.  Build or buy a larger window box that suits the scale of the bay window. Plant it.

12.  Add a lamp to the lamp post

13.  Dig up the weeping cherry and boxwoods in the front of the yard – in progress

14.  General cleaning-out of pine islands, over-growth, dead trees, little trees, little bushes etc. – in progress

15.  Expand pine island in front

16.  Plant fescue in front

17.  Plant foundation shrubs in front of house

18.  Fill-in some of the sloping in front yard

19.  Bury clean-out caps or cover-up

20.   “Wallpaper” the big hallway upstairs with mixed and matched frames

  • Apothecary sign, black frames (set of 3), framed wedding invitation, pictures from wedding,

21.  Paint the back of the bookshelves on the wall they are on with something fun and bright? Could wallpaper these or use drawer-liner

22.  Cheap art solution in living room over couch and upright piano

23.  Frame 4 photos on the sides of mirror in dining room

24.  Find a place to hang blue matted frame – office? Nook in basement?

25.  Hang ledge shelves we inherited from previous owners over master bed

26.  Add crown molding to the upstairs bedrooms

27.  Add chair rail in dining room and wainscoting molding

28.  Chalkboard paint the side of oven cabinet

29.  Add some fun organizational stuff to the garage near the backdoor (a hook for dog leashes, storage for shoes)

30.  Make or buy or refurbish a long bench for the foot of the bed

31.  Get vintage chairs for the living room and refinish and re-upholster

32.  Build a compost bin and a rain barrel

33.  Pressure wash patio

34.  Remove rose bushes, level out garden bed, and seed for grass

35.  Hang a swing and/or hammock from a tree out back

36.  Hunt down some thrift store or craigslist bedside tables and refinish them for the master (drawers for some hidden storage)

37.  Add shelving in garage

38.  Remove door on kitchen from hall

39.  Widen doorway on kitchen from hall

40.  Plant around mailbox

41.  Fence front of backyard and repair left side

42.  Remove ivy – in progress (this is torture)

43.  Remove dead tree

44.  Pine straw the side of house

45.  Cover patio with stampcrete

46.  Pave stampcrete path from patio to deck

47.  Remodel hall bath

48.  Remodel master bath

49.  Tile half bath

50.  Remodel kitchen

51.  New light fixtures for house, inside and out

52.  Get IKEA shelving system with cubbies for office or spare bedroom/craft room

53.  Repair molding to attic entry

54.  Nail down quarter round in downstairs bath

55.  Spray paint vents white – in progress

56.  Switch outlets to white – in progress

57.  Find an old chest on Craigslist and refinish for alcove in basement

58.  Make a sunburst mirror and spray paint gold for over chest in alcove

59.  Paint wall behind the washer and dryer

60.  Make Atlanta subway art for console table

61.  Make built-ins around the washer and dryer for functional space (ironing board, laundry supplies, dry cleaning bin, drying rack or clothesline)

62.  Remove sliding closet doors in bedrooms, replace with something else tbd

63.  Replace bedroom doors and hardware

64.  Repurpose closet doors into work table for office

65.  Replace garage door with a plantation door

66.  Make ombre painting for master bedroom

67.  Disassemble playground

68.  Add shelving in unfinished basement

69.  Get lampshades for lamps in master

70.  Spray paint floor lamp & buy new shade

71.  Build a recycling sorter

72.  Get full bed and dresser from room at home for basement bedroom

73.  Caulk and seal exterior of back door in family room

74.  Replace battery in smoke detector in basement

75.  Buy fire extinguisher (1 for basement)

76.  Replace toilet seats (3)

77.  Drawer and shelf-liner for kitchen

78.  Re-plant the planter that is built-in to the porch with some shade plants

79.  Re-plant the various planters around the yard

80.  Organize our closet and dressers

81.  Get storage solution for master bath

82.  Paint back door chocolate brown

83.  Brace deck

84.  Stain and poly trim around back door in family room

85.  Install low-flow shower head in master, get plumber to sign off so we can get the water turned on

86.  Dig up dirt for a summer garden in the sunniest spot in yard (back of garage)

87.  Get 32 Gal. rolling garbage can and recycle bins/bags

88.  Patch holes in dining room and paint over

89.  Install lighting underneath kitchen cabinets

90.  Purchase and install new light fixture for over kitchen sink

91.  Make 12 x12 wooden squares with scrapbook paper over loveseat

By the way, my personal to-do list has been reformed! I was nervous about going all digital with it, but I decided to give it a go. If you have an Apple or Droid device, you should check out the Remember the Milk application. It’s pretty sweet.


I have the app for the iPad and its design is very similar to Twitter for iPad – all those screens you can swipe off to get gone. It will sync with your Outlook tasks and separate work tasks, personal tasks, and school tasks. It sends you email reminders every morning with your to-do’s. You can mark things as complete. You can write notes for each task if you need to. You can give them a time deadline as well. So far, I like it better than carrying around a ratty piece of paper with crossed-off items in ineligible handwriting.

Update: I’m obsessed with Remember the Milk. It has changed my life. I don’t know how I ever lived without it before.


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