The Creek House

Life in a 1910 Folk Victorian

Friday, November 24, 2006

historic neighborhoods struggle with homeless problem

Our neighborhood is profiled RIGHT HERE.

The First Real Project

So this weekend Jon and I --- okay, mostly Jon - have tackled our first real home improvement project since moving into our house: painting our bedroom.

Right now it's a dingy white with dingy white trim and doors. It's also a really big room, with 12 foot ceilings, and measuring 15 feet by 17 feet.

We figured that with the children gone to their father's for four entire days, we'd just get that sucker painted. Jon planned to do a little scraping, spackling, and priming and paint.

Well, he started scraping and quickly discovered that covering the original plaster in the room was a layer of old, heavy wallpaper, covered by several layers of paint. Ack. So we decided he had better take down the worst of the wallpaper before beginning anything else.

To make a long story short, this job is becoming something that's going to take far longer than four days. There is special primer that's going to have to go over all the wallpaper that's left before we try to paint, and that's AFTER Jon removes all the bad parts and spackles, etc.

Having grown up in old houses that my parents restored over time, mostly by themselves, I was sort of expecting something like this. Jon has remained in amazingly good spirits. I'm doing my part by cleaning the rest of the house thoroughly, and I am looking forward to learning to paint when we get to that part.

Jon at work:

Picture 007

Picture 024

Picture 017

My attempts at putting up outdoor Christmas lights all by myself have thus far been, well, disastrous. I keep breaking bulbs and buying strings that don't work together and I fell off the &%$$% ladder, but I am determined that those lights will be up and TWINKLY when my children come home.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

I want to interview you and your house for!

I am writing some new articles for and I'm looking for interview subjects. Please be in touch if you fit one of these categories and would be willing to let me ask you some questions:

-You have reglazed/refinished bathroom fixtures rather than replacing them (whether you did it yourself or hired a professional)

-You have a "non traditional" floor in your bathroom (wood, bamboo, cork, one of the new "bathroom friendly" carpets, glass, rubber matting, cement)

E-mail me at

Friday, October 06, 2006

Houseblogging, waiterrant style


Monday, September 11, 2006

fencing dilemmas

Originally uploaded by kgranju.
These are some shots of our back yard, which we really, really need and want to fence. We got one estimate for a 4 foot cedar picket fence that was going tobe ---GASP -- $3300. Not an option at the moment.

I am wondering if we should get some estimates on what it would cost to do it in pine or something (although I've been told pine will just rot). I am also wondering about the feasability of trying to do it ourselves. Probably a crazy idea, given the fact that our lot is full of stumps and brush and is very uneven. It won't be easy to fence.

Plus, we need the fence to be really flush with the ground at all points so our small dogs don't dig out; the fence isn't just for looks.

(the deck is painted now)

Originally uploaded by kgranju.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

need dining room paint ideas

Originally uploaded by kgranju.

As you can see, it's a lovely, large room with chair rail and wainscoting (I think that's the right word for the stuff on the bottom half). It's also currently painted solid white - top, bottom and ceiling.

I need ideas for what we can do with paint and maybe paper. I don't want to strip the woodwork, so we'll keep the white trim in general, and I want a light, airy look but with a punchy color.

So have you got any ideas? What parts of the room should I paint and what colors?

the dining room from the living room

Originally uploaded by kgranju.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

charming craftsman cottage for sale - CHEAP!!!

Originally uploaded by kgranju.

Here is my adorable craftsman cottage. It's in the historic OAKWOOD LINCOLN PARK NEIGHBORHOOD of Knoxville.

It is 1468 sq feet and has 3 bedrooms and 1 large bath. Plenty of room to add a second bath upstairs or downstairs.

It also has:

-Hardwood floors throughout, most refinished
-Large sunny kitchen with big windows, pantry and orginial built-ins
-Central heat and air
-Flower garden
-Large, fenced yard with view of Sharp's Ridge
-Original wood windows in most of house
-Original, UNPAINTED wood trim throughout
-Working gas fireplace
-Large, airy, dry, daylight basement with small, soundproofed "music room"
-Many original fixtures
-French doors
-Nearly new hot water heater and nice built-in dishwasher
-Historic neighborhood near downtown with sidewalks and active neighborhood association

This lovely house is in very good shape. Move-in ready! With only minor cosmetic updating, it can be a real showstopper.

Asking price: 99K - HIGHLY NEGOTIABLE! I've bought a new house, so make me an offer.

E-mail me at:

researching our house's history? can you help?

Can anyone point us to some good online resources for learning how to research our old house's history? I'm ready! (And I have NO idea how to get started :-)

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

we're married!

katies wedding 043
Originally uploaded by kgranju.

It was an awesome wedding! People keep asking me why we aren't on a honeymoon, and I keep telling them that we love our new (old) house so much that we couldn't wait to get home to it :-)

We got some Home Depot/Lowe's gift card booty as wedding gifts, so now we have to decide what we are going to use it one. I think it's time to make a list of projects and decide what order we want to tackle them.