Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Quilt Wall

There's a six foot wall that has been used for several different things. A couple years ago, we put up wooden "rails" and I hung perfume samples in paper bags on that wall. We took the rails down for painting. It turned out GORGEOUS! Now I have an excuse to make a 48"x48" quilt to decorate the wall!

Monday, January 30, 2012

PINK Playroom!

I can't believe how many times this room "gets worse before it gets better"! I have lots of before pictures, essentially everything getting moved around again and again! But today was AWESOME! My friend Lara I. came over to paint (she is a professional painter). She's also an "organizer extraordinaire". She has a history of helping me declutter time and time again. So if the paint weren't on the 10+ scale, she also helped me MOVE THE COUNTERTOPS back into the garage! Hooray for friendship! NOW, we are down to sifting and sorting through toys, legos, fabric and junk! This room is really on its' way to being used the way that suits us best!

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Bookcase #1 Saturday

What a big job...clear the work area, open the cardboard boxes (there were EIGHT), haul the pieces one-by-one into the playroom, put the pieces together. This went 100% more smoothly than the last time we put one of these together...I think they improved the instructions...either that or having four of us working together made a difference! HOORAY!

Saturday, January 21, 2012



I was talking to John's Mom today on the phone and she offered to come over and help me clean! I accepted and she came over! And LOOK what we did together! We accomplished the goal of cleaning out the area where we need to put the bookcases together and it is ready for painting. Some things were put in the sunroom but most of it when into her car for giveaway! THANK YOU KAREN!!!

Of course, the day wouldn't be complete without nearly catching the house on fire...we had put all our packing peanuts and bubble wrap into a big plastic trash bag. It got shoved against the wall heater while we were cleaning. The hot grill started melting the peanuts and plastic!!! What makes me laugh is that those packing peanuts SHRUNK into teeny, tiny peanuts and got really hard!! They were actually so cute! The bad smell is gone and so is the bag of plastic...into the garbage can!

The top photo was from July 30th...the cart and wall-o-drawers still in the room and bottom is today:

Friday, January 20, 2012

Today's Challenge

This is what the playroom looks like today. We removed the cart last weekend and I'm left with a heap. I've walked into this room several times to start cleaning up and just can't focus. I can't seem to start. The living room was a little like this, too-DIFFICULT. The immediate goal is to get the entire area in the photo EMPTIED so we can A) we can put together the new bookcases (which are still in the living room) and B) prepare for painting (which happens on the 30th).

I am so miserable not doing anything, I made myself to look at what needs to be done this afternoon. Here's what I see:
garbage can
box of new bottles
3 boxes containing bottles of fragrance oil
paper towel roll
organza pouches
box of pens
lip balm packaging, supplies & ingredients
paint cans
paint supplies
zip baggies
packing peanuts
2 empty game boxes
large chair boxes
3 metal end tables
3 sewing machines (!!!)
box for October decorations
give away box (full & heavy)
magazine boxes
ribbon drawer in a bag
art supplies drawer
stack of journals
empty boxes
soap ingredients & supplies
bag of poly fill

OK. Reality check...some of these things will GO, some will stay and some go to the recycle bin. I need to take the paint back to Bruce to darken it, too cotton candy pink (do this on 28th).

So here's my to-do list:
-next Sat 1/27 take in paint for color adjustment and a good shake
-take all recycle out
-put all ingredients together, these should go in a box in the garage
-gather journals, art supplies, ribbon bag, polyfill and put in sunroom (these will go on the bookcase when assembled)
WAIT, I'm going to do this another way...hey, this works! I took my list and organized it. I'm going to do the EASY section this afternoon.
paint cans
paint supplies
magazine boxes leave in room for now
_________________________business supplies, just gather together
lip balm packaging, supplies & ingredients
zip baggies
box of new bottles
organza pouches
soap ingredients & supplies
3 boxes containing bottles of fragrance oil
_________________________move to sunroom (kids can help on Monday)ribbon drawer in a bagart supplies drawerstack of journalsbox of pens2 empty game boxes
_________________________easy-do now today
Xdish (dishwasher)
Xfan (put bag on and put in its winter home in garage)
Xshirt (dirty clothes)
Xpaper towel roll
Xbag of poly fill (sunroom)
_________________________"difficult things", move to sunroom
3 metal end tables
3 sewing machines (!!!)
box for October decorations
empty boxes
large chair boxes
garbage can (sunroom)
_________________________for craigslist tomorrow
free packing peanuts
_________________________drop off at goodwill next week
give away box (full & heavy)

This project is hanging over my head. It doesn't have to take this long. I can't wait until these last two rooms are done. I keep thinking about what my life will be like when my house is tidy!

Update: After doing the easy things, I can see there's a lot more stuff that didn't make the list. I will categorize what can't be dealt with easily. Put the sewing machines together. Will put two on craigslist tomorrow.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Front Porch Pretties

I only went for primroses. But I saw a pot I really liked, no, that's not what happened. I stepped into the shade house "just to sniff the sarcoccoa" and these two little guys JUMPED onto my cart! Then I saw the sweetest hellebore who begged me to take him home (his name is Jacob). Of course, I had to go back to get another white primrose to match and then decided it all needed to go in one big pot. That's when I found the pot. After the plants. January is the big indoor plant/pot sale at my favorite nursery so I got the pot 30% off-yeah! I purposely did not come home with a trailer because I want to enjoy the pot in full view for awhile.

It is ridiculous to pay $4.99 for a 4" Western Sword Fern when I grew up around thousands of them. But I figure I'm paying for the convenience. And that I did.

I immediately got to work upon returning home. Walking out the front door today was sheer HEAVEN...the strong smell of sweet box attacked me as I opened the door. Just like I wanted. :)

Thursday, January 5, 2012


I've been checking the out of stock notice for the Expedit bookcase several times per week just in case they really aren't going to be until mid to late February. This afternoon I had a nudge to go check-I SAW GREEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can't believe it! There are FIVE in stock...right there in the warehouse about 25 minutes away.


I drove down with my 11 year old son (John hurt his back and was unable to lift) to IKEA tonight and carefully transported the cargo home.

Funny thing is, the EIGHT boxes are now in what used to be my CLEAN living room!

The good news is IKEA has a new "family" deal and we saved $40! That's nice!

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Final Living Room-Before and After

It is SO nice to have this room clean! The vacuum and some plushies need to be put away, but overall I'm really pleased with the final pictures. Wow, another room DONE. Over this next week, the whole family will really focus on keeping this room looking good by putting things away. As previously mentioned, I want to get a lamp for behind the green chair when it gets moved to the right of the TV in the spring and we need two end tables and two torchiere lamps for the sofa. The room is SO dark during these daylight starved winter days.

Seeing the living room COMPLETE and tidy, is frankly somewhat miraculous. It was SO hard and it took me SO long to overcome this room! The sweet reward of seeing carpet is awesome. I realize I have a testimony of perserverance just in this one room alone.

As I look over this blog as I'm updating the living room photos, I'm astounded. I have come SO far! And as I look over some of the pictures, I can remember and feel what it was like to be stuck. At those times, I couldn't see the "after pictures"...all I could see was the mess in front of me. Oh, how I feel like that in the sunroom and playroom! All I can see is mess (for now).

I really like Vicki Norris' comparison of a life process and riding a bike through a tunnel. As I can see I'm in the latter portion of the tunnel, I can see that "there's light at the end of the tunnel". Hooray! Seriously awesome! I can also turn around and look behind me to see where I started at the opening of the tunnel and how at that time, everything in front of me was veiled in darkness. As I stand nearing the light at the end of the tunnel, I'm struck with "what happens next"? I feel uneasy and maybe a bit afraid...the unknown of what life might be like once this huge process is finally completed. I continue to step forward in faith, knowing that the Lord Himself has given me assurance and power to overcome.

The challenge to actually get rid of junk continues to intensify as we only have two rooms downstairs remaining. The playroom and sunroom are full of stuff we've dumped and the reality as I look around is that probably about 80% of what is here MUST FLOW OUT OF MY HOUSE.

Today we spent 5 minutes in the sunroom, so that is underway!

Monday, January 2, 2012

Living Room DONE!

Well, the Christmas tree is put away and the decorations tucked away for next year and we have a tidy living room! Not perfect...there are a few things to refine the area but we can function and walk in the room safely! We want to replace the googly lamp in the corner and in the spring when we can turn off the heaters, we'll move the green chair back to the right of the tv. The sofa is still squished next to the bookshelf (to make room for the tree) and along with centering it under the windows again, we need a couple lamps and end tables. I LOVE the new mantel art and I like that it has little glass cups to hold the tealights. These are easy to take out and clean.

Though much of the mess got dealt with properly, in a way, I cheated on the living room because some of the stuff got tossed into the sunroom/playroom area (which is a no-no). But due to Christmas, it was necessary to clear out the room. Those things WILL get dealt with soon as we are already working in the sunroom now.

Official before and after photos coming soon. :)

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Mantel Art

Before Thanksgiving, I ordered the Crate & Barrel Circuit Wall Candleholder and then decided I needed to MEASURE the area above the mantel to make sure it would in fact-fit. GUESS WHAT? Too big. I have standard 8' ceilings and it just would be too big so I cancelled the order with Crate & Barrel (excellent customer service) and I found the Collage Sconce at Z'Gallerie which I bought on sale for Black Friday. I love that the package came with two extra tealight cups and everything was protected with no breakage. The metal has a bit of a rusty finish and I wasn't sure if I'd like that it wasn't black (even though the photo looks really black). But it really works and I think it has a softer look NOT being all black. The Circuit Wall is 48"x33" and the Collage Scone is 40"x24", so the Sconce simply fits better.

Ironically, today as I look at the links, the Circuit Wall price has gone UP $30 to $179 and the Sconce is on SALE for $69.99 down from $79.95. I am so pleased with my purchase and was thrilled the Sconce was SO EASY to install. We used the E-Z Ancor metal screw-in wall anchors (50lb limit each) from Home Depot. One screw, two screws and it was up. Too bad Z'Gallerie doesn't have place for ratings on their website, they'd earn a 5 out of 5!

I thought I might sell the artwork by Howard Behrens, but Daniel requested it for his room. It looks AWESOME above his art table!
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