Saturday, May 8, 2010

space clearing and much more

there is just so much i have realized within the past week and a half. i wish i had time to record it all right now, but i don't, because its 230am! rafe is sick with fever and keeps calling out for me, and i can't sleep anyways because of the crazy revelation i had about the very true realness of feng shui and energy and symbolism and...oh! i wonder why this had to dawn on me in the middle of the night! bad timing!

i will simply have to make notes for myself and fill in the blanks later:
scarface shirt
stuck energy and heat
symbolism of our belongings
naming your home
creating so very real...the things we say, even while we might mean them lightheartedly, are so very powerful (hence, no more "crankyhouse!")
my new rhealm of exploration: shamanism, space clearing and feng shui
the book "true love" by thich nhat can't remember how to spell his whole name
untying of painful heart knots
beginning a new blog about shamanism and the energy of spaces

okay, i think those are the major points.

poor rafey. better get him again.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Exterior Paint Job Completed Mostly



What might keep me from doing any more blog stuff is, oddly, not the fact that only 2 people read my blog! ha! because it really is mostly a selfish indulgence, after all! BUT the fact that I have such a hard time getting pictures from my camera to this blog is really frustrating. And then I really feel like a dunce that I don't seem to be able to rearrange the pictures after I upload drives me nuts! Because you know - I just don't have half an hour to play bloggie! I have maybe 10 minutes. Anything beyond that is really beyond the limits of my attention span and/or the neediness of my other obligations.
What do you think of the mostly finished job? I haven't worked to remove that blob of paint on the brick. I think more will come off if put some elbow grease into it. Or not. And I'm getting shutters which are going to cover that paint blog somewhat. Hopefully, ALLwhat. But probably not. Worst case scenario is I have to paint the brick. Or have to look at a blob. And at this point, I'm more likely to opt for looking at blob! Kinda indifferent at this point!
I'm very very happy to see the rotten board replaced and the flakey paint fixed up, things sealed and tidy. But I'll be honest with you (tina, the only person with the patience to read this) that I'm not 100% behind this color combination. I think the colors are great together, and they really suit the house. The are kinda arts/crafts and go well with the door style, the timbers, etc. But, dear reader, the colors are much more drab and dark than I realized they would be. Like I say, I really do believe it is a huge improvement and it suits the house very well. But does it suit my style perfectly? Well, no. But then, it didn't really match me before, either. At any rate, it is a project done well! And for that I'm so happy! I might wind up having to paint the shutters a deep green/blue to add some cheer to this color scheme, though. I think the wood door complements the whole thing very well. I just need...I dunno, a little flash of brightness!
And, because I am a color nut, I'm a little disappointed that after all the time I took to make a decision, I still didn't manage to find a color which works perfectly with the color of the grilles on the windows. Now, for some people this might seem ridiculously picky! But you have to understand, I'm insanely sensitive to color! So forgive me! But the color of the window grilles is a purplish/pink/gray. And it just doesn't jive with the trim color, although I'm fond of the trim color, godblessit, I truly am!
What I learned from this: just pick colors you like, dammit!
Stella's room design service available. Please contact me for details.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

pictures at last!!!

Trying to pick out paint colors, and decide whether or not to paint the very red brick. I decided that painting the brick a lighter color (body color) would look wrong...but I'm still not crazy about the brick red. Might try doing a "wash" of body color on the brick once everything else is finished being painted.
Laundry room project! I would like to put a countertop over the washer/dryer. Obviously the dryer would need to be replaced (more $!) to make that work! Would also need to have a cut-out in the counter to allow for the water to the washer. Got an estimate for a stainless countertop at $800!! Wow! For some reason the laminate is much cheaper, more like $300. Hmmm. Hmmm. Well, obviously these are all extra pleasant things I would like to have, but are not necessities. Might do that part of the project another year!
You can see here the side entry door which has not been opened in years! Well, not completely true, opened it this winter when the sliding door was frozen shut. Here is the plan: remove this door and window, make one larger window in their place. Between the window and door was a short wall and door into the laundry room. This made the laundry room very small. By removing that door and using the previous "hallway" as part of the laundry/pantry, it will make one more spacious room instead! Awesome!!! I'm so excited to see that wall removed!Of course there have been hitches in all this! What kinda house project doesn't have those?? Turns out I had no more of the floor tile. I ordered more, and the color and size of the tile has changed, or at least is so inconsistent that now we need to track down more tile that is the appropriate size. And all that is really needed is about 20 6" square tiles. Lotsa thought for a very small tile project!
A fun side effect of the whole project is that this secondary stair (to the right) is now gone! They needed to get the rotted deck out of the way to do a thorough job with the extra siding that needed to be added once the door and window were removed! This also means that the air conditioner gets much better air circ now because it is not blocked by the deck overhead. Super! And some day, when my tile is found, when my window and my pocket door arrive, and are painted, and installed....I will have a new picture to post! It will be a happy happy time in the laundry room!!
Happy Spring to everyone!

Thursday, March 11, 2010


did i already post this one of the yucky backside of my house? what i need to find is one of my really good front photos, because my neighbors are sorta irritating to me when i try to stare at my house and figure out colors. i've had 4 neighbors comment, sarcastically, that i just need a few more colors to look at. (actually, ive only got about 6 colors out there, which isint bad considering i need at least 2 in the end!) funny, it sounds like i must be out there a lot to have so many comments! ha! actually, it all happened on 2 nice days we have had, and every able bodied human being went outside to try to recover from the horrible winter we've had! yer also liable to come across a lot of neighbors here because i live in retirement-ville - someone is ALWAYS walking their dog! some of the neighbors walk their dogs 3 times a day!!!

funny picture of my in-laws gorgeous barn. to be honest, i would rather just live there! its a beautiful building. and the colors are really nice, too.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

cleaning and fixing - just weird?

it seems like time for me to redirect my energy.

i think i've justified my interest in decorating and house projects as being a nice break from constantly thinking about the more constant pressures of raising children, and the somewhat redundant tasks of maintaining a house and family. fooding it up, wiping down, scrub, vacuum, polish. calming tempers, carefully observing rashes. the constant battle with entropy. sure, it's not a battle you can win, but i feel responsible to try as hard as i can.

at least, i've always thought it is important to be as clean and organized as i can be. of course these ideas all come from how you are raised. my mother was a very, VERY (obsessively) clean and organized person. and even though it might not have been the healthiest approach for her, it did always give me a feeling of security to live in a home that always felt fresh, smelled clean, my clothes were clean, there was no clutter to trip over. (clutter is a tough one, though, because i think children do like to create clutter while they play, and if someone is constantly picking up your playthings, well, i think this can limit creativity. clutter is a separate subject, though. but briefly, i do sometimes wonder if it made it less fun to play knowing that my mom was dying to return everything to its appropriate space... i for sure allow a LOT of play clutter, and i allow huge messes, especially when stella is into a "project", i don't want to interrupt by trying to control the chaos.)

but back to my point - i felt that the cleanliness of my childhood home gave me a sense of order, calm, and security. interestingly, i don't think my siblings felt the same way about it. but i personally am thankful to my mom for being a great homemaker. i suppose some of that comes down to our "nature" and whether we feel calmer in cleanliness or just restricted.

hmm, i know this is a lot of detail. it may even seem overly analytical. but when you come from an over-the-top clean home, these things seem important. and when your job is taking care of a home and it's occupants (and most adults consider this to be at least one of their jobs) it seems like a worthwhile topic to reflect upon.

i wonder what it would be like to be a person who was just sloppy and never questioned whether this was "okay" or not. and of course there is that weird "cleanliness is next to godliness" issue, as well as "idle hands are the devil's, um, playthings? puppets?" you get the idea. i often think it would be really freeing to not care at all about mess.

industriousness and hard work - things that i was raised to believe are SO very important, so important that they contribute or detract from your overall Goodness. Is this a common struggle that people have? or only people who, like i've described in my situation, came from a perfectionistic home? or is it an American obsession? puritanical? and, related to the cleanliness obsession - how about our society's current obsession with germs and hand sanitizer? seems a little creepy at times... i am always seeing moms slathering their kids in bottles of that stuff. im not saying that i never use it but - doesn't it seem a bit extreme to anyone else? the super strong cleansers we use to clean our homes - similar issue, isint it?

well, at any rate, i think most people are affected by this cleanliness ethos. probably just subconsciously. it is interesting to watch my inlaws reacting to a spill on a piece of furniture. they go into complete panic mode. their tempers flare, they are rushing around like a fire is about to reduce their home to ashes. the spiller is bound to feel about the size of a crumb, too, by the way. and they seem to be operating the dark about the WHY of their perfectionism - it's just, well, how it IS!

going off on a tangent here, in a way... what i was originally thinking about was less about cleanliness and housework and more about how we feel about our houses, and the drive to improve them (or the lack thereof). it seems to me a pretty basic almost primal instinct to want to "feather the nest" - picturing: cavepeople fighting over cheetah skins. i enjoy nest feathers. not so much cheetah skins. i think most people do enjoy sprucing their homes, to differing degrees. and of course most improvements need cash, so it is a luxury to an extent. but we obtain such a sense of security from the feathering. and i guess, what i've been trying to remind myself, lately...all the feathering in the world does not keep a family safe, or together, or happy. thinking of buddhist principle that desire is the source of all suffering, because it is feeding into this illusion that things we desire will bring us happiness, etc...

i always believe in the middle way. i know the answer, or at least the safest bet, lies somewhere there in the middle. caring, but not making it a priority. checking in often to ask: what is my motivation? am i focusing so much on the external as a way of ignoring the deeper and more difficult questions? being aware of excessive materialism. i know i would never surrender completely to the entropy, give up on keeping the children reasonably clean, keeping the toys tidy enough that they are promoting creative play rather than hindering it. and though my children very rarely put vegetables in their gullets, i will continue to try to offer them with, um, moderate frequency (hey, ya can only look at SO much food being wasted, right?) and im never probably going to stop being bothered by the cracking paint outside my house, or the bedframe that i would love to replace that causes huge thigh bruises if you work to close to it.....

ah well, an inexhaustible subject in my mind, but surely exhausting for everyone else. that is, for both of you who read my blog :)

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

more basement

awesome room, eh? but i think i saved it mostly for those wooden posts.
this is a nice way to use a basement space. i love metal shelving. love the homey touches, too. i think this is what i am hoping for in my basement. i dont want to try to make it look like some opulent living room, just a basement that is finished enough to be comfortable for use.

love the stair rails. also, the open glass of the windows. my ceiling is of course about 13 feet lower than this.

the dark painted ceiling thing. hmmmm. nice, but this ceiling is much prettier/tidier than ours. ours has a million "sister joists" and a kajillion nails poking through. perhaps they would not be noticeable with dark paint?

had a picture of white ceiling, too, but cant find it.

i've called so many posts "random things." let's try "radon things" for a change.

i adore this type of light. and i went out on a very thin limb, more like a holly branch, and purchased a similar light for my front entry, which is currently lightless. oh, oh, how much attention this will draw, and im afraid it will be mostly negative. but, my dears, my dears, it's my house, so, ta ta! ta ta!!!
hello, you are my favorite place. well, nearly. i would have to add a few colorful french chairs and frou frou it up a bit. but i think the contrast would be magnifique. and radon-ish, as well.

my old house! i thought this light was just sooo perfect for the house. put it in right before we moved. i hope the people there now enjoy it! i also loved the little copper doorbell. again, a radon picture i just happened across.