My Prerequisite Beautiful Photo
Hello everyone. Me again. A day late and a dollar short. Where does the time go? I can't tell you how many days go by when I think I don't have anything interesting to say or new photos to share. The other evening I was scrolling back over posts I'd written years ago and I saw so many craft projects, tablescapes, changes in decor, organizational ideas... a nice variety of everything. I feel like my blog has taken a different direction of late... Okay, things shift, life has it's changes, but I plan to spend some extra time I have in the winter months, when the Midwest burrows down under blankets and the snow flies, to spend time going off in varied directions. And I hope to get on a better schedule!
I've been working on my den again. Have you ever felt that a room would be perfect if for just one thing...something you can't put your finger on. This is a super small room and before I overhauled it a year ago it had walls covered in dark green floral wallpaper, shelves on every wall with dusty books going back years, and a few pieces of somewhat formal furniture that made the room even more unappealing as opposed to relaxing. The room time had forgotten.
I stripped the room down to the bare bones and bought some comfy furniture. Maybe it's the small space but the neutral colors looked very bland. I've tried bold pillows, adding navy and then burgundy accents. I almost gave up, my room felt comfortable so I was just going to stop fussing. And then a few days ago I saw these curtains at Target and I thought, "Bingo". The color, pattern, the silky texture, it was everything I needed. Sometimes things just don't fall together at once. And since I am a chameleon, it's probably better that they don't.
And then I got around to some other decorating challenges. I might have mentioned that The Husband has been sticking his nose in...er, becoming a bit more interested in the decor here and at the lakehouse. I'm seriously not sure where this is coming from. Everything from pictures on the walls to simple switch plates. We bickered for days over having white or cream colored cabinets in the laundry room. The laundry room!!! I didn't know he even knew we had one. That aside, one day I found that he had made some major changes to our office. Over a year ago I took on a huge project of cleaning out this space that had become a virtual storage room with a computer. I actually filled up five huge Hefty bags and spent a ton of time tossing out homework going back to when my girls were in high school and The Husband was working on his first season of Fantasy Football. Possibly 1987.
You see that huge clock? It was a garish gold and it took me days to paint, three coats in and out of all those little curlycues. I made the little floral arrangement under the cloche and framed photos of the kids. And above the computer I added push pin boards. In keeping with my feminine side I pinned all sort of cute postcards and pics...
And then one day I noticed this. The Husband came along and claimed his territory in a way that would have made General Grant happy. He loves the history of the Civil War and American Indians. And I truly love that he loves that. His knowledge of that period of time is extraordinary. But I just happened to walk into the office one day and there was Geronimo staring at me. I sort of freaked. On the opposite wall where I had a lovely gicglee painting on canvas, he had replaced it with one of his framed degrees, and the painting was on a wall in the guest room, a terrible placement I might add.
My feelings were all over the place. Of course I wanted his degree hanging on the wall, but it was a smallish framed square on an otherwise empty wall. But I remained calm, he actually uses the office more than I do and in a way it's rather cute that he wants to add his weird little choices for decor.
One day last week he came to me with a stack of photos, maybe 8 X 11. Black and white illustrations of...trout. Big ugly trout swimming to the surface of the water with flies on hooks dangling above. His eyes were sort of twinkling, "I'm going to have these framed!" he exclaimed, "For my office!" Oh, high five! Then..."You mean your office downtown, right?" "No! Here!"
This is when you take the time to walk around the house and gently close all the windows and doors or your neighbors might otherwise warn the police your home is about to become crime scene.
I did however, calm myself down by taking a long shower. My second of the day. But it gave me time to think. And my first thought was the obvious, march into the office and take all of his gosh darn historical, over achieving crap down and put my stuff back. And then as I was drying my hair I had a novel idea. Sometimes when you do the opposite of what people expect it really throws them off. I went in and took down my pictures, my burlap boards, my pretty cloche and framed photos, I even took the cute baskets holding printer paper and the miscellaneous. Oh, and the Target lamp.
It looked sad. Barren and sad. As we sat down for dinner I told him he was welcome to frame his trout and flies. I said, "I actually made a ton of room for you in the office to do whatever you please."
A week went by and not much happened. One of our daughters mentioned to me that they brought up the subject of the 'undecorated' office to him and he looked a little sullen. And then one day I received a text from him. "Hon, have you redecorated the office yet?"
And that I did!
In other news, we watched this movie Saturday night. Having read the book and loving it, I wasn't sure if I'd like the movie but I think they were equally good. The movie kept true to the book although it had to leave out a lot of nuances that shaped the story and characters, but otherwise, it had us both reaching for the Kleenex. I'm reading the sequel now along with fifteen other books.
I'm really excited to say that we may be moving back into the lakehouse over Labor Day weekend. I am beyond excited. Everything will be delivered, the furniture put back in place and I believe our belongings are in boxes labeled for each room. Everything is going to have to be washed and stored. Have you ever looked forward to work like that? I am so excited that Milo and Layla can be back at their home away from home...I know that sounds a little over the top but they filled in a spot where the kids left off once they grew out of spending weekends 100 miles from the city. I wonder if the hounds will recognize it with all of the new smells.? I have a little stash in the corner of my family room but otherwise we have nothing new to bring. Abby and Tom found this sign at HomeGoods. I love it!
I want to end this post by telling you about a long time blogger friend of mine, Traci, from The Traci Chronicles. Traci and her family live in Baton Rouge and although they are safe and have escaped damage to their homes, there is devastation all around. It's heart wrenching to read this blog post I'm linking you to but I hope you take the time to read it along with a recent email from her. I'm copying and pasting it for all of you. I asked her how we could give, how we could donate or help. Her email says it all and more. It's my feeling that we see devastation, pain, hunger and disaster all around the world everyday. Seeing communities, countries and the world work together is one thing that is not only critical, it opens our hearts and restores humanity. If you have the time to look at the Go Fund Me Page, please do. Ordering much needed bins and supplies directly through Amazon is also a really great option. I ask that you contact me directly for Traci's address.
9:47 AM (7 hours ago)