April 6, 2019:


The income taxes are finished and were taken to the Post Office yesterday to send out via certified mail, which now costs nearly $16 for two 8 1/2 11 envelopes with return receipt. Yikes! But worth it because I have proof positive once I get the little green cards back that the returns were delivered and received. And just in case, there are tracking numbers that I can also tap the U.S. Post Office for to verify that delivery was made. In these times, it's better to be safe than sorry

I have been working in little bits and pieces outdoors whenever a window in our crappy weather has presented itself. Today, however, was the first day where I was able to spend an extended period of time outside. First, I cleaned up areas on the sidewalk and driveway along the edges where pine cones and branches tiny branches blown off during the seemingly wind storms we endured over fall and winter 2018-2019. After resting for a bit, and removing the winter hat, gloves and jacket, I moved to the back yard because I'm sick of feeling sick to my stomach every time I look at it through the patio doors in the dining room and window above the kitchen sink. This winter left it a true disaster zone. I worked steadily raking small areas and filled two trash can size black trash bags full of debris blown down from my arborvitaes and neighboring trees over the winter, in addition to about half a ton of nut shells. The nut shells are my fault because I feed all the neighborhood squirrels. They are so entertaining, and very smart! I also made a small dent in starting clean-up of the flower beds, where the "mild" (ahem) weather and thawed earth has encourages perennials to start popping through, whether I'm ready for them or not!

All in all, a somewhat decent start to making a larger dent in clean-up operations. I worked outdoors about 4 hours off and on. I didn't want to overdo it, and truth be told, I'm pooped! It's humbling to not be able to work as long or as hard as I used to. I can get it done, but I have to take lots of rest breaks so it takes quite a bit longer now. Good thing I'm retired


Sunday, September 28, 2014

Le Danse de les Meubles

I just love how something as mundane and shoving around furniture trying to rearrange it sounds so romantic in French, don't you! 

Yep, today I was dancing with my furniture - specifically, my living room furniture.  I really liked the arrangement as it was but I have to admit, I did have a lot of furniture packed into the 14' x 15' foot space.  I didn't feel crowded in it, because to me each piece served a specific function and also holds so many sweet memories...

But I think my guests were a little taken aback by the arrangement, although they were far too polite to say so.

And, with Christmas a mere 3 months away I know I'll be wanting to park my tree in front of that big overgrown picture window of mine in this new version of Maison Newton, so rearranging the furniture is/would be a necessity.  I preferred to try it today when it was warm and sunny outside but cool inside the house, and the air is soooo dry, I just love this kind of weather!  We've been blessed with an entire week of it, can't believe it! Plus, I got up at 5 a.m. wide awake and the Sunday paper wasn't delivered until 6:30 a.m. so I had plenty of time to finalize the slow "stew" I've been doing for the past several weeks on how I wanted to rearrange things as I sipped my one cup of coffee for the day and checked out some of my favorite d-i-y and YOUR home decorating blogs.

Bad blogger that I am, I did not take photos of the "before" -- I'm looking right now to see if I have anything...

Hmmm, this is about as close as I can get.  This photo was taken a few days ago!  You'll see in the "after" photos that the curio cabinet did not move from its spot, but the desk/chair, lamp and the sofa did, and by the way, all of those boxes were opened and most of them unpacked; the rest of the items stashed away for future inventory and possible donation.

Here's what it looked like after some initial shifting:

Ugh!  I was in for a long hard day...

Furniture stashed in the kitchen -- and in my future den/library/study across the way...

 More pushing, heaving, shoving and pulling later:

The sofa went where the Queen Anne console holding the t.v. was (on the wall backing to the kitchen/dinette, and the Queen Anne console went where the sofa used to be:

But I didn't like how it looked -- too tiny to hold down all that space!  So I moved the desk there:

I liked how that looked much better; the proportions seemed to be more in play with the overall feel of the room I was going for...

And then along the way, I saw some doggy pee stains that I just had to clean up:

Another one:

Oh my.  Time to get rid of them!

This stuff really works!  And no, this is not a paid thingy.  If it was I would have made sure my photo was much better, LOL!  But let me tell you, I've used many spot carpet cleaners over the years because at one time I had three doggies of my own, all since moved on to The Happy Hunting Ground, and I am intimately acquainted with "accidents."  This Scotchguard Oxy Carpet Cleaner really does the job, and I don't have to wear my arms out rubbing it in and scrubbing it out either.  Spray, let it set 3 to 5 minutes, start blotting and, if the stain is stubborn, a little soft smooshing with a slightly damp towel or cloth from the outside working in to the center of the stain and voila, no more fricking stains! Don't believe me?  Seeing is believing:

Carpet was still wet in this photo, so not the best photo but look the stains are gone; when the carpet dried (and it dried in a couple of hours today, amazing!), I vacuumed over it and it looks great.  But I will have a professional steam cleaner come in and give this carpet a good going-over!  Gotta schedule that...

While the area of the carpet I'd done up with the Oxy Cleaner was drying, I continued shoving and heaving furniture around:

I had to turn the rug (UGH!) -- I got a work out and a half just from that, let me tell you darlings! The rug lays long side in front of the sofa. Once I turned the sofa to its new wall, the heavy wool rug had to be shifted around too. It just did not look right to take the lazy woman's way out and leave it, nope. It had to be moved. The plus side of all this manual labor (ongoing) is that since this move I've lost six pounds, whoop whoop!

I had read that an area rug should be large enough to fit underneath a sofa and the table, chairs, etc. etc. that it is intended to anchor.  Yeah, right.  Like I had a couple thousand dollars to spend for such a large sized rug, ha!  I got this beauty a few years back from Overstock.com when I had intended to redo the family room -- which got delayed and delayed and delayed...  I posted about it.  I had wanted to do the family room in celadon.  But when the rug came, it sure wasn't celadon!

Getting there...

But that side table, it doesn't work.  Too tall. 

Okay, that works!  That table used to be on the side of the sofa.

And it wouldn't be complete without the elephant lamp gracing it:

Decisions, decisions...  Should I keep the desk there, which is taller and I like how it fits underneath the window proportionally, or should I keep the Queen Anne console which is shorter but longer, to hold more stuff...

In the end, I opted to keep the Queen Anne console table in the living room.  The desk has been moved into a holding area (my would-be den/library) because I've got plans for it, if they work out.

Meanwhile, here are a couple more photos of the sort-of completed living room, with the coffee table magically cleaned off and all the clutter temporarily moved:

I won't lie -- this looks a lot like my Grandma Newton's house does in my memory, just maybe a little bit jazzier.  Hmmm...  But I'm not a grandma, and short of a miracle, sure the heck won't ever be!

I've got to remove those curtain rod brackets above the south window.  That lace scarf was tacked up the day I moved in (July 7) and it's been there ever since.  Was not even ironed!  It reminds me of the lace curtains that Grandma Newton had in her house.  Fortunately (or maybe unfortunately?) I don't have the 1940's style floral print draperies to go over the lace!

Buddha was put up on the south wall.  Not sure he'll stay there, but for now, that was an available open nail-hole in which to shove a nail upon which to hang the plinth upon which Buddha now sits.  If all goes according to plan, the niche to the left will be completed next weekend and filled with books and my horse-y collection.  The space looks bare right now but it has to be open to have easy access to the bookcase it will become!

This is what it looks like right now:

After Kevin the Handyman scraped of the built-crud and whatever where the metal tracks that held the little metal thingies that held the shelves up used to be.  Scraped away, sanded smooth, spackled.  Another coat next weekend and a paint job after that, and then new tracks will go up on the back wall.  New shelves will be custom-cut.  Just deciding what color to get.  I'm leaning toward white, in which case I will paint that bottom "platform" white, too.

Final photo (are you snoring yet???) for the day, and then time to get ready to watch my favorite t.v. show premieres in prime time!

Oh yeah, nothing like the vacuum cleaner in the background, LOL!


  1. Great post! Furniture arrangement is the important part of beastliness of our home. If we do not place it in right way, our room will look not good.