Category: Manorisms

Let Me See What You’re Workin’ With


Saturday, June 14th, 2014

I am a visual person.  I’m that girl who has to move the couch around five times before knowing where I want it.

To avoid the hassle of buying and returning things that may not work for Em’s toddler room, I drew a scale model using Illustrator.  This raised several unexpected questions:

  • Should I place her bed facing the door, even though that’s the death position in Feng Shui?  Sure, Em knows nothing about Feng Shui.  But her paranoid, superstitious mom does.  Bed will face another direction.
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  • Dresser: 3 or 6 drawers?  I hadn’t even entertained a 6-drawer dresser until I re-read this Young House Love post.  The more I thought about it, the more I realized we’d make great use of the extra drawers.
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  • Desk or Table?  I wanted to get her a desk, but I really enjoy sitting with her while coloring/reading.  I briefly considered getting her a small vanity, but paranoid premonitions of fostering self-image issues helped me nix that idea fairly quickly.
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  • Round or Rectangle Table?  I really like the look of a 29″ round table, but I think the smaller 29″ x 19″ rectangular Sundvik table will work better.  We already have one in our living room, so I’ll hold off buying a second one until everything’s in the room.  Once that happens, I may sneak a round back in.
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Five hundred gazillion mom hours and second guesses later, I think I’ve found the most optimal configuration, complete with sleep, dressing and play zones as well as a cozy reading corner:

Of course, it’s Mercury Retrograde, so I could easily toss this out once I purchase everything this week.

Next weekend, I paint the walls.  I haven’t painted a room in a LONG time.  Please wish me lots of luck.

And feel free to bring me margaritas. 😉

Purple Reigning It In


Sunday, June 1st, 2014

Em’s nursery is attached to our bedroom, separated by french doors.   During her sleepless infancy, the close proximity was fabulous.   But we’d like there to be another infant in there within the next year or two (knock on wood.)  Rather than generate unnecessary resentment over a potential sibling, we’d rather move her now than when there’s a kiddo on the horizon.   It’s time to transform Junk Room Left into Em’s Purpletastic Boudoir.

Plus, I want to move her before she turns into crib Houdini.  I have nightmares of moving her into a new room with the ability to easily escape.   To our bedroom.  (KNOCK ON WOOD)

I’ve ordered her bedding, purchased a rug, researched curtain options and pinned a gazillion ideas. I’ve got grand designs for painting an IKEA dresser and transforming two furniture pieces that once belonged to my grandmother.  When the bedding arrives next week, we’ll select her wall paint color.  The goal is to paint her room on Saturday the 14th.  I was going to pay to have the room painted, but I’m going to take that money and put it into room essentials…ya know, like a sparkly, little chandelier.

I know…I know…a chandelier sounds a bit much…. some would say “princessy.”   To which I say aww hell no.  We’re going for pretty not princess.   I just really want her room to be something she loves, and the bling appreciation is strong in that one.  She’s kind of obsessed with a chandelier lamp I’ve had forever.  And should she grow into the 2024 version of a riotous, steampunky gothgrrl, she can slap in black light and hang Tim Burton figurines from it.

Until then, here’s what I’m envisioning:

Mother of All Cleaning Days


Sunday, May 11th, 2014

This weekend, we were to pack up and head to Austin for a family birthday party.

And then plague hit me hard.  I assumed we’d just all stay home, but Dan had other plans.  He decided he would proceed as planned but single parent it.   I was not enthused with this course.   Em isn’t a fan of car trips and can be a handful when tired.  Add to it all the actual baggage required for her care, and it’s a lot for one person to handle.  Then, I remembered the last Austin trip and all its drama.

But Dan insisted.  He knew she would have lots of fun with her cousins, but I think he was more concerned about me getting better. This has been the worst plague I’ve had in a long time.  I told him I’d feel guilty if they were gone and I sat on my ass.  I’ve been saying forever “if I just had the whole day to myself, I could get so much accomplished in this house.”  I argued that if he went to the party, I’d just sit but if I stayed home, I’d work.  His response  was to tell me to sit on my butt and save the cleaning for another weekend.  I agreed.

I briefly considered booking a pedicure and getting my eyebrows threaded, but my chronic cough nixed that.   With a BFF girlie day planned for the 24th, it wasn’t a big disappointment.  Within 20 minutes of their Saturday 11:30am departure, I was knee deep in Junk Room Right.   It had become a clusterfudgle with the stuff I’d thrown in haphazardly before slamming the door shut behind me.  I tackled that clutter and even managed to encase my wedding dress, a task that took  a mere 4-1/2 years…

Once finished with JRR, I moved into Junk Room Left, removing batteries from toys headed for storage and whittling down clutter.   We’ve decided that this will be Em’s toddler room, so I spent the most time in there.   Once Dan moves all the remaining baby gear, all we’ll need to do is paint!   Three trash bags and two donation bin runs later, I moved onto dusting, vacuuming and laundering.  I followed that with a grocery store run before settling in for the night.

I spent the evening going through old CD-Rs filled with old messages, Bar study outlines, resumes and photos.   It was pretty funny reading through it all and shaking my head.   Oh, to be 27 again with the knowledge of my 34 year old self!

After finally getting my first night of  cough-free sleep, I awoke at 6:36am.  I tried going back to sleep, but it just wasn’t happening.   Dan, Emme and I Facetimed before I started my day of laundry, pot roast prep and errands.  Now, I’m just sitting on the couch awaiting their arrival.

Most people wouldn’t consider it a “relaxing” weekend, but I do.  I got to knock out some big tasks on my punch list.  And I didn’t have to do them in short one-hour bursts while trying to juggle a kiddo or hear her calling for me.   I love the little booger, but she’s pretty adamant about being the center of attention.   I’m letting her have that for now.   Hopefully, this time next year, she’ll be on the verge of learning how to share her spotlight with a sibling.

And if not, well, then we’ll spend Mother’s Day doing something fun.  Like space-planning an office/guest room space for Junk Room Right.  🙂

Stem Sale


Saturday, May 3rd, 2014

You know those things you have just to have but never use?  I want those out of my house.

All of them.

Pressed for storage space, I started scouring cabinets for purge potential.  This was my stemware cabinet this afternoon:

When Dan and I combined households, we had the Brady Bunch of barware; his and hers martini, wine, champagne and various other glasses.  Rather than pare down in 2009 when we bought the house, we moved everything.   The more the merrier right?

Fastforward five years and our priorities have changed.  Our sippy cup stash outnumbers our shot glass collection.  I decided it was time to make room for baby toddler.   Well, namely her easily accessed toddler craft obsessions that have caused way too many tantrums.  We’ve barely touched most of these glasses.   I took the ones we do use (Dan’s high balls and sniffers…ha!) and moved them closer to our everyday glasses.

This is my brand spankin’ new stemware/craft supplies/vitamins cabinet:

So now I have three boxes of barware ready to find a new home.  I considered putting them in our annual garage sale stash, but we’d be lucky to get $20 from our frugal shoppers.  I’d rather they be gone.  Now.

Tomorrow morning, I’ll put them on the curb with sign that reads “FREE.”

Followed by an “ing” written in invisible ink.

Update (05/04/2014):  This morning, as I planned to drag my now plague-ridden self outside to curb the glassed, the hubs said he would prefer we donate them to Goodwill.   It being Sunday, I stashed them in the garage until I can drag my plague-ridden self to a drop off location.   But they’re out of the house, and that totally counts.  😉

Surprïse!


Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Dan’s been wanting a chair for the manroom to replace the leather loveseat he regretted buying.

Dan is very, very tall.
The manroom is very, very small.
I am Dan, Dan I am
I do not like the Klippan.

My husband is my decorating antipode.  I prefer a traditional, neutral, warm aesthetic.  I lubs me a good greige! He appreciates contemporary meets mid-century modern design.  For his manroom seating, he initially considered an Jacobsen Egg-style chair
But those are pretty pricey.   After some Windows shopping and a trip to IKEA, he decided on the Strandmon, a classic wingback chair.   He typically gravitates toward bold colors, so he surprised me further by selecting gray over orange.

Unfortunately, the chair was too big for our cars.  My DIY hubs had plans to rent a Home Depot truck, but I was able to sneak out Tuesday night to buy the Chair, Ottoman and a Mongstad Mirror via IKEA’s Picking and Delivery service.   While it was frustrating dealing with the IKEA version of Bevis and Butthead, I was stoked at the idea of surprising Dan.  I even went so far on Wednesday night to measure his wall in front of him, saying “Yeah, I think that chair you want would work…”   I’d already measured that wall.  I knew it would work.

The delivery guys came mid-morning, giving me ample time to unpack and assemble while Em napped.   When he got home and walked into his manroom, Em yelled “Surprise!”   He looked genuinely surprised.

As I type this, he is watching television comfortably in his chair.   Ya know, after I made him get up so I could take pictures for this blog entry. 😉