Like a walk through the country side living on a small farm is full of daily surprises, sometimes wonderful and amazing, and other times puzzling and sad. I hope you will walk with me as I live out my dream of living on this tiny farm. You will come to know the dogs, cats, Shetland sheep and chickens that make up this farm and what goes into keeping them happy and healthy. Come and join the journey with me.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

Trailer-- Before and After Project

Do you all remember back almost a couple years ago, when I purchased a small ratty travel trailer, that was going to be the kittens winter home (before they went outside the next spring which never happened and we all know how that ended up which pretty much means I somehow became the crazy cat lady overnight with way too many cats in the house not the travel trailer...cough)?

Well, plan B was that it would be a wool room after the kittens got done with it. Since the kittens never used it, it became not really a wool room per se, but a giant junk drawer with a small area to store the fresh sheared wool when Spring rolled around.

Are you still with me? Okay, so now almost two years later, Plan B is actually taking shape. Only sorta different. Now it's Plan C and the travel trailer is going to be my wool room/arts/crafts/storage of materials area. At least that is the plan.

There is one sorta hitch to it though--it leaks--really bad. So, that has to be taken care of before I get too carried away with things. In the meantime I have plastic drop clothes to cover stuff when rainy days come along.

So, I don't know about you, but I always enjoy a set of before/after pictures when someone takes on a real messy project. It sometimes inspires me to tackle ugly projects. With that said, I hope you 'enjoy' my befores and afters of the little trailer.

Before we get going though, there are some things to know. I got the trailer cheap. It was full of nasty junk, and even nastier rodent droppings and debris. Lots and lots of it. I wore a mask while cleaning. It stunk to high heaven of mouse. Before it was purchased (and not used or cleaned) by the people I got it from, a gentleman was living in it full time. I don't think he was an excessive pig, but well, he was a man, and he lived in this tiny area. That being said, the kitchen area was covered--and I mean covered---with built up grease. There are still some areas that are sticky, and I had to completely remove the overhead cabinets because of the grease buildup. Don't forget those rodents either---leaving their droppings in the sticky goo. Enough said?? Not quite--there was also a small fire at one point that scorched the kitchen area. Anyway, I think you get the picture--it was a stinky awful mess.

At this point I still don't want to put much money into it, until I'm sure the leaks can be fixed. So mostly all that I have done is lots and lots of elbow grease cleaning and scrubbing, dismantling and removing non-essential things and so on. My Dad removed the stove for me (which was an awful greasy stinky mess--do I sound like a broken record yet??)

The initial cleaning all took place within a few weeks of getting the trailer. So it's been mice and droppings free for almost a year and a half and smells pretty darn good for an old travel trailer. Unfortunately it had become a catch all for everything that needing 'temporary' storage. Last weekend I spent an entire day taking everything out, scrubbing it down again, working on removing the glue from the flooring (still have a few spots to scrape up) and then organizing and putting back those things that belonged in there. I love it now. It needs paint and paneling and some repairs, but who cares!

Okay, with all that being said, are you ready for a before and after tour?

Come on in...if you dare...

This is right after I got the trailer....

And here is Cat (Ballou)--she'll be your tour guide. She's the newest member of the staff and will be primarily modeling scarves and other wool products in the future. For the most part she is pretty quiet, a bit mysterious, and sometimes just plain creepy when I forget she is there.....

Here we are at the door looking in....can you say...icky?

Still at the door glancing to the right...

And now an after shot, also taken from the door. Check out that cool retro 70s floor covering that was revealed after I tore up that nasty (shudder) carpeting! The cabinet now holds small storage bins for my wool crafts.

Before picture of the very nasty table, but it was solidly attached and cleaned up well. The curtains came down the first day (and
they didn't survive washing...)

Here we have what was the 'bedroom'--which was basically a pile of boards and paneling. I think they had tried to make the bed bigger. Once I carried all this stuff out there was a small bench area, which at one time had a fold out bed.

In this shot, Cat points out the 'new' bench, wool storage to the left, and the cleaned up table. She also wants you to note all the lovely west light that comes in, so that this area doubles as a 'greenhouse' in the Spring. (and in case you are wondering Cat is fingerless..but we don't like to talk about it).

Next is the totally gross out before picture of the 'kitchen'. It was bad, real bad, and I'll not tell you all the gory details. This is also where the fire was, up the back wall.

And here you have an after shot--stove removed (thanks Dad), a few pretties on the wall to cover some of the mess, wool storage where the 'frig was, and wool craft supplies on the counter.

Alright...we are almost done, I promise. Here we are standing by the table looking back towards the door (door is to the left) we came in.... The chemical toilet (surprisingly clean when I got it) is to the right, and a small wash area straight ahead. There is the cutest tiniest little sink in this nook. after of basically the same area, slightly different angle--you can see the door in this one. That is a tiny closet there next to the door.

And that is the tour. It is a quiet, rather peaceful area now. I'm looking forward to using it to draw and craft in. If the leaks can be fixed, I can leave projects out, instead of having to bundle everything away (remember the whole reason for the trailer, again? Cats--cats that are in the house instead of the trailer...)

Oh...and here is the mess that waits for me when I step out of the trailer.

Can we come in too, please??
(sorry girls, this is a no fur zone...)


Christine said...

Brilliant! There are all sorts of roof patch kits available at most RV shops. Also a clear coating that you can apply like a paint. Should stop your leaks fairly inexpensively.

Louise said...

Beautiful! And, a lot of work. I bet that you have been sleeping really, really well!

Karen Anne said...

After all that work, you have to figure out how to patch the leaks.

That's am amazing transformation. You couldn't have gotten me in there with a hazmat suit :-)

Tina T-P said...

Yay, you're back! You have much more energy than I ever had to tackle something like that - Could you put metal roofing or fiberglass overhead to stop the leaks? I guess that wouldn't keep snow from blowing in tho. You need something like a BIG shower cap :-) T.

Journaling Woman said...

I know you warned me, butI puked in my coffee over the before pictures. Glad I didn't see it then.

YOU have done an EXCELLENT job. Looks good and you made it a functional room now for the fiber.

Dad is always awesome for helping.

PS can't you put a tarp over the roof until you get it fixed? There's rain coming next week.

Vicki Lane said...

Well done! Hope you get those leaks fixed soon. Such a nice space now!

~Kim at Golden Pines~ said...

I think I would have given up, which is why I admire you for sticking to this task and seeing past what was in front of you and seeing an image of what a great space you'd have in the end!

PS: I have to chuckle, my word verification is 'purge' :-))))

Kathy said...

(I meant to ask how Mesach and Sage are doing???) And Blue?

Kathy said...

And I think the trailer will make a dynamite office/wool/fiber studio! Wonderful!

Gosh...I wish I had 1 tenth of your energy!!! ;)

phylliso said...

I love fingerless "Cat",she had me laughing on the tour.
You have done a wonderful job making the trailor useful,I believe the cats would still live with me & not in the trailor.
The pups are growing too quickly!phyllis

thecrazysheeplady said...

Here's what you need to do!

Star said...

No wonder we haven't heard much from you lately! Now I get your dream! I can see what you wanted and you're almost there. I have no idea how to stop the leaks, but I'm sure you'll find a way.
It's going to be a really cosy nook for spinning and wooling and sewing and petting the animals.
I love your dream.