Monday, November 18, 2013


Brent says I hit DEFCON 5 when I find out someone is coming to our house - because typically our house is in a state of complete disaster.  I had to wiki what DEFCON 5 meant.  It is a readiness level the military uses when determining what state of alertness to be in - level 5 is actually the lowest level, so he should probably start putting me at level 3.

We are a busy family that prefers to be outdoors when the weather cooperates rather than scrubbing floors, dusting and Windexing.  When I find out visitors are on the horizon, I go into a tailspin of cleaning fury...whilst commanding orders to the remainder of the family unit.  Adrenaline runs like wine during these instances, but it works because things usually look pretty put together by the time said visitor steps through our front door.  If you've been to our house and thought "hmmmm...I wonder how they keep it looking like this!" The secret is that we don't.  Just ask my mom.

So when the Argus Leader contacted us recently to do a story about Brent and I that would involve interviews, pictures and a video, we officially freaked out.  Well, I freaked out, Brent just stood back and watched while I went through my roller coaster of emotions, waiting for me to come back to Earth.  When I did, we did what any other couple would do - we made a list.  A huge list.  A list of all the little tiny 10 minute projects around our house that we've been procrastinating for far too long and the larger projects that we hoped we could get done before they arrived.

Here's a link to the article if you're interested:

I'm guessing I can safely say that most of us take on home improvement projects and only finish them somewhere between 80 - 95%.  A few tiny details always seem to linger and even though they would take mere minutes to finish, it can be hard to find the motivation to come back around and finish them once you've moved onto something new.  Sometimes you need motivation, like the local media, to kick your buns into gear and finish what you started.

You are about to witness what the Kruse's can accomplish when mama hits DEFCON 1!

The kitchen paint color was ok, but the color in the dining room was just a few shades off, so I felt like it would feel more cohesive to carry the dining room/living room paint color through to the kitchen.  Plus I thought the new paint color would flatter our kitchen cabinetry more than the old color, which seemed to make the cabinets feel a little yellow.  Project time: 3 hours





In our basement bath that we remodeled over a year ago, Brent was never able to get around to building the cabinet doors and drawer fronts.  Which is super ironic because his full time job is building cabinet doors.  Project time: 8 hours

Last summer, my neighbor, the same one that gave us our shed, gave me the back door off of his house because he was putting a new one on.  I spent several weeks stripping it (the running joke became "Heidi is stripping in the driveway") and sanding it so Brent could replace our current front door with it.  Since our old front door was a left swing and needed to be a right swing, we were left with these holes in the jam from the old hinges.  Brent filled the holes with wood filler and sanded and painted them.  Project time: 1 hour

French doors lead from our dining room to the outdoor patio.  A few months ago we replaced the handle set because the old one wasn't latching properly.  I never got around to touching up the paint where the old lockset was.  While I had the trim paint out, I went around the main floor and touched up all the trim that had nicks dents and scratches in it as well.  Project time: 30 minutes

All of these projects took us a Saturday to complete.  We spent Sunday through Tuesday going through every room, decluttering and deep cleaning.  When I say "deep cleaning", I do not mean that lightly.  Fan blades were dusted, folks, and the tops of doorways and picture frames.  That's a first for me.  So is ironing a tablecloth and embarrassing to admit - but I even ironed our Christmas stockings.  Everyday I iron my clothing, but a tablecloth and Christmas stockings?  Seriously?  They were super wrinkly and I wanted it to look perfect though, so sometimes we do thinks out of the ordinary to achieve the almost extraordinary.  I probably should have been a home stager.  When you spend as much time as I do, looking at pictures of homes and ideas for projects, you start to get a sense for how things need to look to translate to good pictures.

Even though these projects weren't incredibly gratifying, it felt good to cross them off the list.  What projects have you been procrastinating?


  1. Wow the color change in your kitchen is really nice! And I bet you guys felt soooo good to have all those loose ends tied up! :) I always love that feeling.

  2. Going to DEFCON 1 can definitely have it's advantages. The best is when it's a few days or weeks later and the stress is all gone and you can enjoy your handiwork!