Meanwhile, back in the birdhouse, here are some before photos:
The Dude's office as it was emptied...
We use the foyer to store stuff temporarily. The goal is that it eventually gets emptied again, but since we never use the front door, we sometimes fall short of that goal.
And this is a blurry before of the tv room, taken by Miss E:
And I forgot I had this photo...this is during the process. Note the foyer. For two weeks, that's where the tv was. And a large couch. And all the dvds. Etc.
And the other direction...one bookcase's contents were piled in the Dude's office as well as one of Miss E's desks. But a lot was piled into the guest bedroom. And then a guest was imminent, requiring that it all be unpiled again by sorting and tossing, etc.
And now, you get to click through for the results of my version of urban renewal...
As a child, I cleaned my room pretty much the same way. Everything into a pile in the middle of the floor and redo it all from scratch. At least, that's what I did when I wasn't just pushing it all under the bed. My father caught me doing that a few tines. So we completely emptied this room that was an impossible mess, painted the walls, and bamboo'd the floors. This is the last of the bamboo on concrete slab rooms. All other bamboo floors will be on top of plywood. In terms of sustainability, I like that bamboo isn't a tree hardwood or something made of petrochemicals. On the other hand, it gets shipped from China and a lot of energy goes into that, though water freight is the cheapest kind of freight. So it's a tradeoff. But not in how it looks. I love the way it looks and I love light-colored flooring.
And a different direction...there is actually a tv to the right of the entry, but I'm not really into tvs. I'm into reading corners. Please note the foyer and compare to the 'before' and 'during' photos.
And a closeup of Miss E's office, aka her 'station.' I don't care what she calls it as long as she uses it and keeps it neat enough to be used for schoolwork and recreation. Like the rest of the family, she now has two computers. Only her laptop has internet. The pc is (as it should be) only used for games and watching dvd's. Her mac laptop is for REAL computer stuff.
The Dude's built-in bookcases turned out like this. Note the window seat. We like that.
And since a guest was coming and we'd done 'urban renewal' on the tv room, we ended up able to radically rearrange the sitting room as well. We're going to try out our loveseat instead of chairs in front of the fire this winter.
Yes, it's not an exciting view in the summer, but in two months' time, this is going to be the place to sit.
Other rooms in the house continue to look really, really scary. But these are nice and we'll have to work to keep them that way.
PS: Note that Phineas was in the chair in the sitting room, the first room I photographed. He followed me around as I took the photos. Here he is after my last one, around the corner in the Dude's office:
Grady slept through the whole photo shoot. It doesn't take long for the cats to find the good sleeping spots.