Thursday, March 10, 2011

Someone, Please Pinch Me!

Prepared to be Wowed!  FawnDear finally completed another milestone in my De-hoarding.  The Dining room is DONE!!!  Happy Dance.  I know it seems like forever since I’ve last shared a completed room in my recovery from hoarding.  Honestly it’s because our family has stretched out to be working on 4-5 rooms at the same time.  But we are progressing.

Because it’s taken just that long, let me remind you of the abysmal state of the dining room last November.

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Every surface so cluttered you could barely see the table from the front room.

So sit back and relax, this is a long, picture heavy post.

Remember how I de-cluttered in time for Thanksgiving.  Switched the wall that the China Cabinet went on… with reservations.  Ms. Passion told me to trust her and I did.  Now I’m so glad that I listened.  Are you ready???

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From that to this…

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And yes, it is the same house.  It’s amazing what a lot of hard work can do.  I know blue might not be most people’s first choice of color, but it’s mine.  I need the calm it brings.

Many thanks to my big boys for wielding the poles of paint rollers.  Painting cathedral ceilings are not fun.

So the Tall Wall went from this mayhem of mess…

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To this…

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Say it with me, ‘Ahhhhhh.  So refreshing, Yes?’  Ms. Passion helped me find my voice and style.  It’s been there all along.  I love antique linens and the color blue.  The wall however we painted a Mt. Rainier Grey (True Value), but it looks blue all the same.

The large framed doily was made by my talented Mom.  It had been sitting in a drawer because I was too afraid of my kids damaging it.  But I’ve pulled out the best linen’s.  I’m going to live in my Dream home today and not wait for a someday home that may never happen.  In the Movie ‘Knight and Day’ the comment is made about Someday being the code word for Never.  That struck a nerve with me.  So I’m redefining my Dreams.  My Someday is Today.

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In deciding on an arrangement of plates, Ms. Passion and myself tried out several different configurations on the floor.

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Then, when we finally settled on the one we liked the best we laid it out on the back side of some old wrapping paper I had stashed away in my closet. 

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You mark where the plates are positioned by outlining them on the paper.  Then tape the paper to your wall, adjust the height if necessary.   Then without removing the paper, add your nails, or whatever means you decided to use, to hang your art.  Then once they are all in place, slowly tear away the paper.  Ms. Passion and my neighbor Ethel kindly helped with this part.

It’s the easiest way, I believe to hang a collage, and make sure you get  the positioning you want, right the first time.

I wanted more doily art but until my mom sends me more (hint, hint), or better yet until she comes to visit and can teach me how to do them, I settled for filling a couple of my frames with $1 store doilies.  I took a frame and  lined it with blue material from a thrift store T-shirt dress that I found that matched (nearly exactly) my accent wall. I folded the material over the cardboard that came with the frame and taped it onto the back side.   On the large doily display I actually laid the material on a piece of cardboard that had been treated with a spray adhesive.  Trying to insure that the weight of the crochet wouldn’t cause the knit material to sag.  It turned out beautiful.

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I used an acid-free glue stick in a couple of places on the back of the doilies to have them stick better to the knit material background.  I also tried to do something a bit different and cut the $1 store crocheted find in pieces.  Yes, I hacked up a doily.  So one doily was used in two different frames.

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And the all the coordinating dishes I’ve found over the past few months (super cheap) at the Thrift store or the local antique mall.  It required a lot of patience and multiple trips.

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My favorite one, the top platter, I did get on EBay.  I love that it’s of Washington Crossing the Delaware.  And another plate pays homage to my pioneer heritage.  Go Wagon Train!

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I love my new Stitch and Dish Wall.

“Each decision we make becomes a stitch in the pattern of our life.”  ~My Mom

Okay, onto another dreadful before view.  Here’s another Clutter War Zone before photo.

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And here’s the after.

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This wall run’s the length of my dining room/family room and is a much darker blue.  ‘Blue Dusk’ from True Value, is the name of this paint.  It isn’t too overwhelming because the huge China Cabinet helps break up the color nicely.  You’ll have to wait to see what it amazingly does to my front room.

Notice how my huge sagging rectangle table is gone.  We replaced it with a Thrift Store treasure.  Ms. Passion found me this solid wood, Diamond-In-The-Rough, oval table, with two inserts, last October for just $43.  But it needed a lot of help.  Stripping the stain and varnish, then sanding, and re-staining to match the dining room chairs and finally applying nearly 6 coats of varnish.  Yes, my kids are that tough on tables.

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We decided that the new oval shape would help simplify the room.  Not only is it simple and beautiful, but it’s shape actually gives us more room in which to move around.  And we didn’t lose any seating.

Once again T-rev and Abner were major Elbow-Grease contributors.

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Sanding the little crevices are not too much fun.  Special thanks to my little Dremel tool for getting all the nooks and crannies for me.

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I also went the extra step and recovered the Dining room tables chairs.  Good-bye brown.

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Hello Beautiful.

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Love it.

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We also, took down the bronze colored ceiling fan and replaced it with a craigslist find.  I nearly jumped for joy when I found this on Craigslist, as it matches (style- wise) a smaller one that I found for the entry way. 

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However the old brass didn’t really fit the new rooms color scheme. So, I taped up the candle sticks and pulled out the metal friendly Spray Paint.

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I did spray a Primer on first, then followed that up with a couple coats of Silver. 

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Now it fit’s the room perfectly.

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I also made my first ever woodworking project. I love doing FawnDear firsts.  This first was attempting wood cornices to go over the windows.

The molding was a little tricky, so I must say thank you to whomever invented Wood Putty, sanding and a couple coats of good thick paint to hide my little flaws.

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Oh, and another kudos to Prince Erik for mounting the heavy sucker’s on the wall.  Thanks Stud for being such a Stud Finder.  I ended up making a total of three box Cornices in total for the two rooms.

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It took me a couple of months to find the curtain material.  But I finally went with a Waverly Toile Print from JoAnn’s.  Home Decorating Fabric can be a jaw dropper at times, but I made sure to only buy it after it reached the 50% off.  I then scored with another 20% off total purchase coupon so ended up getting nearly 70% off regular price.  The lining for the curtains was… can you guess??? Thrifted White flat sheets.  The rods… cheapo Electrical Pipe from Home Depot hung on Closet Rod Holders.  I punched grommets through the top of my curtain material and hung them on the pipe with shower curtain hooks.  So they slide open and shut so easily.  And you would never know about the unconventional assembly because it’s hidden up in the cornice.

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The white cornice box was beautiful, but adding a stripe of my accent ‘Blue Dusk’ really made the molding stand out. 

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Not only am I decorating with colors I love but I’m adding more of me.

The yellow roses remind me of the wild yellow rose bush that flanked the small walkway to the farmhouse I grew up in.

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And if you look closely… you might spy something magical.

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My wee little friends have picked little play spots all over the room.

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The wire bird cages I found super cheap at the local antique mall.  I did spray them with an heirloom white to match.

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And they provide even more play space for my pixie and wee feathered friends.

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My whole starting point for this room lies with the china that my Grandmother gave me when I got married.

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My fairies have their own personality.  Some are more shy and only peak out at you if you’re very patient.

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Others dance in the open, loving the spotlight of my mix & match china.

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It feels so good to finally express me, in the decorating of my home.  I know it might not be what is most current in the design world, but it’s calming,peaceful, magical and downright perfect for me.  For the first time in my married life I finally feel like this is my home.

Surrounded with items reminding me of my contributing heritage…

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As well as my love of Imagination.

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There you have it.  My new dining room.  The bonus is our family has had dinner at this table every night for the past two weeks and ‘Glory Be’ we are keeping it this nice all the time.  I’m not even tempted to bring clutter in this magical space.  Thank you Ms. Passion.  You are my Angel.


Monday, March 7, 2011

Bambi Makes a New Friend

Guess who came to visit again???  Well, I guess I gave it away in the post title.  But our orphaned deer friend stopped by our home and invited him/herself into our back yard. 

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Since I don’t the know gender of our little fawn I think I’ll just refer to him/her as Bambi.

Hope did offer little Bambi a little fresh grass but wisely he kept his distance a little bit from us today.

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Please don’t call Animal Control on us, as we didn’t try to make contact this time, other than Hope’s first grass offering.  Just mainly stood around the yard and quietly took pictures as our deer friend visited.  He stayed for over an hour.

 New Year 1932

Even Hope’s bouncing around didn’t scare Bambi off.

I think he was too intrigued by his new friend.

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I don’t imagine too many cats are dumb enough to let a deer get this close.

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But Pumpkin the Ninja Cat isn’t the brightest cat.

Bambi appeared very curious, and I believe wanted to make a new acquaintance.

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And so I watched for a good 20 minutes of nose touching, then bounding off; followed by sneaking back up on each other.

In nearly all corners of our yard.

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Sometimes Bambi would be more interested in lunch.

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And when Bambi lost interest and started eating our weeds again, Pumpkin would wait  patiently.

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And before you knew it Bambi would be curious again.

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So Pumpkin gave Bambi a tour of our backyard.

New Year 1959 

He even took the little Prince/Princess under the trampoline.

And introduced him to even more native terrain.  Yum, Fresh Spring Grass.

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I think Bambi appreciated the kindness of our silly Pumpkin.

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And, I think, Pumpkin appreciated the nuzzle in return.

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So this post is dedicated to my little Arizona nieces who are just as enthralled with Bambi as I am.

Now I’m back to the de-hoarding – But Bambi’s visit was just the rejuvenation I needed to have a wonderful day.  Guess what another room DONE!  I promise to post pictures soon.