Friday, November 16, 2007

A Brag (and a Request)

I was skipping along, all head-in-the-clouds like, just fine, quite content to enjoy my post-vacation glow for as long as the schmoopy-woopiness would have me. But ready or not, along came today, and with it, a bit of reality. Reality in the guise of laundry. Reality in the guise of piled-up dishes. Reality in the guise of kitchen floors littered with firewood scraps. And nothing pulls one out of a post-vacation daydream like a bit of housework.

I readied myself to do the usual - throw in a load of laundry, scrub bathrooms, throw in a load of laundry, dust, throw in a load of laundry, vacuum, and do up some more laundry. Just the normal stuff. But then something took hold of me and I started going a little crazy.

Maybe it was the week with no responsibilities greater than choosing which decadent dessert to try next. Maybe it was the week of lazy mornings at the beach. Maybe it was the impending fall and some primal, instinctual urge to nest before the hibernation to come. Whatever it was, I went beyond clean. WAY beyond clean.

It started with a thorough scrubbing of the boys (nasty-*ss) bathroom. And for some reason, I skipped the dusting spray and decided everything needed a good rub-down with a rag. And I mean everything! Baseboards, ceiling fans, picture frames, light fixture cords. Nothing was safe from the cleaning rag. I rinsed it again and again, and got new ones whenever the current one got beyond saving. I shed clothing, working up a sweat. And when even the raw knuckles and aching triceps weren't enough, I decided to rearrange my living room.

You may recall my living room. Notice there are no walls in my living room. At least none I can use. So we've had this lay-out for, oh, 11 years. We've lived here for 11 years.

Well now, it looks like this:

The couches are angled! Am I a wild woman or what?! I've gotta go sit down for a sec.

And while I'm resting from the excitement-that-is-my-Friday, here's my first request - I need your opinion. I used to think I had the "decorating gene." I mean, how difficult is it to design a room, huh? I know what I like, and I know what I don't like. What I can't seem to manage, however, is determining the perfect room arrangement. I simply cannot do it. My brain doesn't allow it. I envision something, bust a gut moving furniture around, only to find it doesn't work AT ALL. That's happened time and again. And it's why I've had the same, darn, gawd-forsaken arrangement for 11 stinkin' years.

And so now I realize I have a captive audience in all of you! All my loyal readers. All 3 of you. And it's a good thing there's 3 of you, so there can be a tie-breaking vote if need be.

So, which arrangement do you like? This one?

Or this one?

I'd put a poll on here or something, for your ease in voting, but that's too hard for me. I haven't even figured out how everyone puts crossed-out words on their blog yet. And I think that's a hoot and a half.

Here are more photos for your viewing pleasure, and not because I secretly want you to vote for the new arrangement. Because I want you to notice how bloody freakin' CLEAN this place is.

My mother-in-law, the Queen of Clean, would be proud.

Though she's probably mumbling, "It sure as sam-h*ll didn't look like that last week, when I stayed there!"

And she'd be right.

And just in case you were gonna ask, I hate what I did to my purple wall. I tried to do some sort of hazy, glazey effect. And it didn't work. Instead it's sorta schmoopy-whoopy. And I like schmoopy-whoopy if it means post-vacation euphoria. I don't like it when it means stoooopid swooshy looks on my walls.

I even washed every single piano key. Seriously. I did.

Heck, I even did this:

And the last time I did that was in 1998 or something.

So alrighty then, on with the ultra-important business at hand. Tell me, oh please oh please do tell, which way do you like best? The L arrangement? Or the angled arrangement? Seriously, tell me. Tell me now. Now. Now!

And just so you don't worry that I totally over-extended myself, and worry that my raw knuckles and cramping triceps will never recover, and wonder if I should rest my weary self after all this hard work, I did stop at this:

Some areas of my life just aren't meant to be tidy. Just be glad I didn't show you the bathroom "before" picture!


K. said...

It's always the laundry, isn't it? Laundry ruins everything.

I would vote on your living room arrangement, but I'm still dazed from the bright sparkle of your oven. I didn't even know that the inside came in that color.

Okay, so it's only fair to tell you that my husband does the rearranging in our house. Seriously - he just has a better knack for envisioning what will work where. BUT, I can tell what looks good after the fact. Now that you have my credentials, I like the L-shaped arrangement, but I LOVE the angled. Very Feng Shui, for one thing, or at least it seems like it should be. But I think more than anything the L-shaped seemed to say "we have no walls" while the angled says "who needs walls?"

BTW I love the little mosaic in wall in the bathroom. You have such lovely taste.

Stephanie said...

Cassie and I vote for the one with the piano near the fireplace and she loves your purple wall.

My dh wants some of whatever you took so he can get more done at work, LOL! I have never cleaned my oven, when we sold our house in PA I didn't want to include the oven because I didn't want to clean it, oh well we sold it with the oven anyway :)

Love your house!

peacegoddess said...

I love the angles. You can always go back to the "L". Stay angled until the Yule tree needs a home. Everything always gets shoved back against the walls to properly showcase the tree anyway.

Silvia said...

I like the angles too. Especially if you're having people over. You could play charades and nobody would have to crane their neck. :)If I ever did that much work cleaning the house in one day, DH would wonder if I'd done something I needed to confess to. LOL

joanieji said...

If you really want to be crazy put your couches along your dining table...which you didn't show. You can take a nap right after you eat.
BTW Stephanie, you don't know me but hey, the piano didn't move. Were you trying to be cagey?
The angle thing works so much better for gazing out the windows which I'm all for.

Mrs. G. said...

Angles warm up the room and make it cozy...definitely angles. Wow,you have been busy. Your house is wonderful. You better get in there and eat off that bathroom floor while you still can. Thanks for the photos. I love looking in other people's houses.

this vignette said...

Hi there, I love your blog though I don't know if I've ever commented. I'm a fledgling decorator here. The one thing my house needs is rugs. I think that any of your arrangements would be good, though the angles are kind of nice to off-set the right angles of the windows! The secret to "anchoring" all of these elements is a rug. I would recommend an 8 x 10 in a contrasting colorway-- maybe something with some purple in it. It will define that section of the room and make your neutral upholstery pop. Then maybe you can take some inspiration from the rug to pull out a couple colors into a few throw pillows.

As I said, I am not practicing what I preach because I can't afford nice wool rugs right now and I would rather have none than cheap wool ones (pottery barn) that shed forever. I have an acrylic one from target in my office and it's holding up nicely, but I don't know if they come bigger than 5 x 8.


Stephanie said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Stephanie said...

Oh! and one more til next week...
to do a strike through... before the word, put in (in the edit html section of the posting)
< s > and then to end it it's < / s >. (with no spaces, though)

Let's see if the comments will let me put that through...

Steph S

Stephanie said...

Oh, angles!
I'm with k. - very feng shui. Gotta keep that chi and mojo goin' and flowin'!
I'm also with the other hooligans, and I haven't cleaned my oven. (But I always flush with the seat down, thank you very much) Oven looked great four-and-a-half years ago when we bought the house - not so much, now.
I'm holding out for arm & hammer nontoxic oven cleaner, but I can't find any. Long passed a bit of baking soda and elbow grease, I'm afraid!

Love a clean house!
Steph (Steph S in SLC, the one who has been forced offline.) :)

(that was me that deleted - it was this same message with an embarrassing misspell, can't have that!)

gemma said...

Lolita...seriously. I cannot believe you have two boys AND a husband and your light-colored carpet and furniture is still that pristine. The boys in my life have a knack for wiping/spilling/tracking all manner of guck...dispite my rules! Looks very cozy in there. I vote for the angled look as well.

whimsigal said...

I vote for angles!

Glad you had a great time on your vacation!


piscesgrrl said...

k. - I appreciate your kudos about my house all the time, but i'm getting kinda twitchy. I feel like I should show you my (horrid) basement or (nasty) laundry room or (beyond-cluttered) garage just for perspective. Oh, and Brady made the mosaic art at a workshop! It lived on a bookshelf until recently, when I decided it needed a better showing. And as for your husband, if things don't work out with y'all, do you think he'd move in with us?

stephanie - I have a self-cleaning oven! That's my secret. And I STILL only do it once every 6 years.

peacegoddess - actually, being the non-decorator I am, I resent the damn yule tree taking up residence, and make very few adjustments for its intrusion. I know, I'm really no fun at all.

silvia - cleaning like that IS good therapy!

joanieji - who says I don't take a nap right after eating? This way I get some exercise in those 12 steps I have to take from the dining table to the couch. (12 steps - ha, read into that!)

piscesgrrl said...

mrs. G - well, the cat sh*t on the bathroom floor last night so I guess I missed my window of opportunity for eating in there. (cringe) Oh, and I stole your comment-reply format. So, thanks!

jennie - welcome, and thx for commenting! Can I put a rug on my carpet?? I never know if that works or not. My mom has one of the wool rugs you speak of - sheds like all get out!

stephanie - yea, strike-out instructions! You are my official blogging tutor. thx!

gemma - well, the couches are brand new. the old ones in the basement tell the real story! And the carpet? Scotchguarded. And if you look closely (which I absolutely do not recommend), you'll see some parts have seen their better days. I'm holding out for real wood floors. (I'd better get good at holding.)

evie - thx for voting!

Jo said...

I definately like the angled look better. It creates a conversation area that makes the room seem more relaxed and cozy. :)

Anonymous said...

Love the angled arrangement. It looks so much cozier. I wish I would get one of those episodes (the cleaning frenzy and re-arranging mode). Your house looked very clutter free and sooo clean.