It’s garden time and I’m famous.

April 2010 – Hello world.

Terrace garden with onions and garlic planted

While there had been some pretty massive projects undertaken by the time April rolled around, more projects and one of the coolest things to happen in my life thus far happened this month. We tried our hands at painting paneling and ML began the garden planning and pre-planting process. The weather was warm enough for me to bust out the spray paint and turn the burnt orange metal and floral patterned kitchen chairs from my grandma’s garage into lovely silver masterpieces.  ML bought seeds and covered the area around our only southern facing window with plastic containers holding his seedlings. He cared for them meticulously until having the brilliant idea of using our black cavalier as a greenhouse – apparently the temperature inside a black car has the effect of killing off any plant life. He started over and was able to make a pretty awesome first year garden.

By this point, we had already begun the painting of the laundry/utility room. This was the darkest room in the house – all wood paneling and dark carpet. ick. The flooring is a story for another day, but the walls were taken care of pretty simply with a no VOC white primer and semi-gloss paint. To add a little character to the strange nooks and little faux window connecting the laundry room to the entryway, I used two tension rods set parallel to each other and sewed some IKEA window shades to serve as a divider. This completely changed the look and feel of the back entryway and laundry/utility room.

Before and after of laundry room

The most exciting news of April was that PBS visited Dubuque to do a piece on sustainability and transportation.  They were looking for a house to tape Americorps members doing water retrofits and I got a phone call asking if I would volunteer my little, very-much-under-construction house for the effort. I spent the entire morning cleaning and then the volunteers and PBS guys showed up. They ended up finding me more interesting than the retrofitting, so I was interviewed for about an hour and Michael and I were filmed riding our bikes up and down main street while the cameraman dangled from the window of their SUV.
Check out our TV debut and some footage of the house at BluePrint America: Former factory Town Eyes Green Future.

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