a peek inside the fishbowl

22 May, 2012

Reno post #27 – the packing continues

Posted by andrea tomkins in: Home/reno

This is what is on our driveway right now:


I spent most of the amazingly sunny and gorgeous long weekend in the basement, packing with Mark. Oh sure, it was a smidge cooler in the basement than in the rest of the house (our AC was disconnected a couple weeks ago) but marching my weary body up and down the stairs 100 times turned me into a dusty, cranky, sweaty ol’ mess. And I still haven’t quite recovered.

Sadly I ran out of packing paper on holiday Monday, so I was unable to finish what I’d started. I am rushing out to buy packing paper today, and maybe some more boxes. Oh man.

It’s been overwhelming to say the least. EVERY SINGLE ITEM IN OUR HOUSE has to pass through someone’s hands, who has to pause, think, wipe off the dust, and ask him or herself: should this be packed up for the apartment? (In other words, will we need this thing at some point during the next 6-8 months?) Another oft asked question – at least by me – is there room for it in the apartment? Sometimes the answer is no.

Good news:

  • Someone took almost all of the National Geographics we put out by the curb. I can’t even tell you how many there were… I couldn’t even lift the box. I am strangely happy to get rid of them.
  • The basement is finally under control and the thought of packing it all up no longer sends me into major emotional distress.
  • We unearthed my in-law’s heat gun/paint stripping tools we borrowed two years ago and swore we returned.
  • Most of the really fragile and valuable things have been packed up and moved offsite already.
  • We have the keys to the apartment, and have already carried over a few items that were getting in the way around here (i.e. roller skates, houseplants and golf clubs)
  • Mark will be picking up a bunk bed from Ikea for the girls tonight. They are so excited. It’s their dream come true!
  • I haven’t mentioned this, but a Fishbowl reader (and a perfect stranger to me) invited me over to her home to look at her reno (but it was largely regarding my bathroom tile post). Isn’t that awesome? It was incredibly helpful to see subway and hexagonal tiles together in action. :)
  • Piper has been amazing calm throughout this process. There are guys tearing a hole in my kitchen ceiling as I type and she’s totally cool with it. (Question is, will I be able to get any work done this morning? Sigh.)

Not so good news:

  • Although the girls have started packing up their bedrooms, they’re FAR from being done.
  • Our bedroom is not done.
  • The office is not done, and it’s a biggie.
  • Then there’s the kitchen.

Have I mentioned that we move next Tuesday?

4 Responses to "Reno post #27 – the packing continues"

1 | Paul Gratton, Ottawa Home Renovations

May 22nd, 2012 at 9:49 am


You can do it! A reno is a marathon, not a sprint. Just keep going.

Kudos for being so well organized and putting so much thought into your choices. Am really enjoying reading your blog and seeing a reno through the client’s eyes.

2 | Chantal

May 22nd, 2012 at 10:06 am


Holy stress Andrea! You can do this. Breath. Take Care.

3 | Fiona

May 22nd, 2012 at 1:06 pm


Hi Andrea,

Thanks for the shout out!

4 | coffeewithjulie

May 23rd, 2012 at 4:25 pm


Andrea – I was in Little Italy this weekend and in the front window of Preston Hardware, they had black hexagon tiles. If you haven’t bought your bathroom tile yet, go check it out. So gorgeous! (Less than $10)

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My name is Andrea and I live in the Westboro area of Ottawa with my husband Mark and our dog Piper who is kind of a big deal on Instagram. We also have two human offspring: Emma (24) and Sarah (22). During the day I work as a writer at the Royal Ottawa Mental Health Centre. I am a longtime Ottawa blogger and I've occupied this little corner of the WWW since 1999. The Fishbowl is my whiteboard, water cooler, and journal, all rolled into one. I'm passionate about healthy living, arts and culture, travel, great gear, good food, and sharing the best of Ottawa. I also love vegetables, photography, gadgets, and great design.

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