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Thursday, October 30, 2014

The ORC, Week 5– The Showstopping Element and Little Disasters

When decorating any room there should be one element that elicits conversation. Five weeks ago when I revealed the design board for our new family room there was a tie for that coveted position between the blue leather sofa and a rug I had yet to find.

Last Friday I drove over to Highland Park area of Dallas #swanky. I had gone online to Estatesales.org and had spied a few rugs at two different sales that I thought might work.

The rug needed to be large, 10’ x 14’. It required a color palette of navy and red. An antique rug was preferable to give the room a bit of history.

I soon as I spied this beauty in person I knew it was THE rug. But it was priced at twice my budget (which wasn’t very big).

Moving in 039

I texted a photo to Mr. Décor and he agreed that it was a good rug. There were signs at the sale that said bids were being accepted on larger items. So I placed a bid, said a little prayer and drove away leaving this perfect rug behind.

I received a call from the organizer shortly before the sale was set to close. The rug had not sold and my bid had been accepted! I wasted no time in bringing this beauty home. The rug is unusual in that the border has a Persian influence but the center is somewhat French Aubusson/Savonnerie in feel. Although my hunch is that it is English based on the color palette. It is a wool cotton blend that is in exquisite shape for its age. As this was a living estate sale I left my name and phone number for the previous owner, inquiring about the history of the rug, but I have not heard from her which is absolutely her right.

Any rug aficionados out there willing to share their thoughts?

Moving in 033

After a week in which the painters I hired to assist us ended up ripping off large sections of the wallpaper I myself had just freshly painted, provided us with a now nonworking overhead light fixture (I suspect they didn’t wrap it well before spraying), sloppy ceilings as well as half painted trim and cabinets …

 Moving in 049 

…coupled with the million moving boxes I am STILL in the midst of unpacking, I needed a win.

This rug, my friends, was a REALLY good win. It is also dachshund approved. :)

Moving in 038

Next week is set as the reveal day. I still need to fill the shelves with interesting artifacts, ask Mr. Décor to fix the lighting, replace the rotted, wooden back door, hang the drapery hardware and artwork.

It’s definitely crunch time!

Laura

You can see all of the other participants on Linda’s website Calling It Home.

ORC-LP-Blue-250x183

Week 1

The Design Plan

Week 2

It’s Like Watching Paint Dry

Week 3

When All You Have Is A Toilet

Week 4

A Blue Leather Couch

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Great Expectations

There is that moment where one is just SO filled with hope that indeed they feel as if they might fly away or burst. Oh I love that feeling.

I felt that feeling in the minutes before I was waiting to walk down the aisle towards my beloved. It enveloped me in the months leading up to the birth of my children. Even small moments can capture this feeling on a small scale such as when you order a delicious sounding dessert.

This feeling can quickly be followed by complete and amazing happiness. But on the flip side, waiting to rear its ugly head, is its evil cousin: disappointment.

We’ve all been there. That small moment when the pumpkin cheesecake made from Greek yogurt sounded like a good idea but one forkful and our great expectations are sent spiraling down in a disappointing crash and burn.

Lately it has felt as though I have been dealing with a few extra scoops of disappointment. While I am not going to dwell on the negative of the minor and major disappointments I have experienced of late I will talk about myself disappointment others.

By nature I am a people pleaser. I hate to disappoint anyone. Can anyone else relate to this image?

Right now I am stretched so thin you can almost see through me. It’s when this happens that I generally feel like I am disappointing  just about everyone and pleasing no one. Earlier this week I received a few emails wondering when was I going to start posting this years Halloween crafts and my costume tutorials. So there it was in writing: I was totally letting down my blog readers.

My first inclination was to look around and somehow try and find my glue gun. I just know it is here somewhere…

Yep, pretty much every room in my house looks like this:

Recently John and Sherry, of the uber popular Young House Love sent the DIY blog world into a tizzy when they announced they were laying down their hammer and glue gun. In that moment, while I was standing in a sea of boxes, I totally got it. It didn’t matter that in the last month I had made a major move across two states, almost single handedly painted every inch of a 3000 square foot home by myself, started school once again and somehow kept my family fed and clothed while living in a hotel. I had failed to make a new festive fall wreath and a historically accurate costume requiring 8 million man hours using only a piece of string and some silly putty.

I suspect that John and Sherry realized that no matter how many fabulous projects they created there was always going to be an insatiable beast on their backs that wanted MORE.

So I took a step back and asked myself “What is really important?”

Finding the sheets for our beds is really important.

Locating a dish to eat out of is pretty necessary.

Helping Sweet Boy create a 3D animal cell by Friday is a big priority.

Science Project | 3D Animal Cell

Secondary in importance is making sure that all the boxes get unpacked. The bathroom floors of the house, due to plumbing issues, all need a good scrubbing. The yard also needs some attention according to the HOA. Laundry and meals are always on the list and I need to see that my homework gets done. Lower on the list, but sometime before Friday, I need to buy a pumpkin or two and several bags of candy. I am looking forward to taking a break from the boxes and sitting out our driveway (in last years costume :) sharing treats and meeting our new neighbors.

It may be sad to some that blogging didn’t even make the top 10 on my “to do” list. 

But by choosing to focus on God’s will for my life I can never go wrong.

So am I permanently laying down my hammer and glue gun? Not at all. But I am taking a break for a few days to put the focus back on where it most needs to be that is pleasing to God.

But please know you matter deeply to me. Your friendship is a true treasure. If I can pray for you please don’t hesitate to leave a comment or email me.

Laura

“How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that comes from the only God?” ~ John 5:44

“Am I now trying to win the approval of human beings, or of God? Or am I trying to please people? If I were still trying to please people, I would not be a servant of Christ.” ~ Galatians 1:10

“Whatever you do, work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men,” ~ Colossians 3:23

Thursday, October 23, 2014

ORC Week 4 - Are We All On Board With A Blue Leather Couch?

As with most rooms there is always one item that is a bit risky. Either financially or aesthetically. In the case of the couch destined for our family tv room it is both. The sofa is a Chesterfield style which is as classic as can be. The risk is that it is navy blue leather. I pulled the trigger on this beauty so that it would arrive in time for the One Room Challenge reveal. Mr. Décor and the kids both love it. But the question is do you?

blue couch

I also have been scouring Etsy for vintage plaid blankets and throw pillows. Here’s an inspiration image of similar items as I want to save the specific bits of bliss for the reveal.

Tartan Throws on Outdoor Table and Chair

As far as the room itself the ceiling and built ins have been painted. The transformation is completely amazing. Given that it was 30+ year old varnished wood there are still areas with a bit of bleed through (despite sanding, priming and 2-3 coats of paint) that are being touched up. But boy it looks SO good! The carpets were relatively new and since the Storybook Cottage seems to be hemorrhaging enough money in the 3 weeks we have owned it  (Can you say backed up plumbing main line?) I opted to just give them a deep steam clean.

 

I am still on the hunt for a vintage red oriental carpet and need to paint the base of the thrift store coffee table base I found. Mr. Décor and the kids will cut and saw the wood this weekend to finish the top. Once we are finished it should look similar to this:

Have to have it. Belham Living Townsend Coffee Table $159.98

Then if that it is not enough to keep me busy, there is the matter of having an entire house to unpack.

Two words, ¡Ay, caramba!

Laura

You can see all of the other participants on Linda’s website Calling It Home.

ORC-LP-Blue-250x183

Week 1

The Design Plan

Week 2

It’s Like Watching Paint Dry

Week 3

When All You Have Is A Toilet

Monday, October 20, 2014

A Halloween Collection

Today our furniture is set to arrive to Storybook Cottage. There is still quite of bit of work to be done, but as in most houses we will continue to chip away at our “to do” list while actually living in the home. I know it will take me a week or two to unpack all of the boxes.

Our neighbors have decorated their homes for fall in such a festive manner. I can’t wait to share all their darling porches with you. That is as soon as I find the battery charger for my camera. :)

So while I take a few days off to unpack I thought you might enjoy a few DTA Halloween favorites from years past.

A House in Spitafields

Creating 18th Century Costumes on a Budget

18th Century Ensemble Decor To Adore 124-001

A Pumpkin Diorama

fall projects 020-001

Spooktacular Mantle

fantel 064-002

Nevermore Tablescape

Nevermore Decor To Adore 008-002

Whoooo Loves A Good Tablescape

halloween 016-002

A Spooktacular Table Setting

boo 140

I’ll be back on Thursday with a ORC family room post. I can’t wait to show you all that was accomplished!

Laura

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Losing It Over A Lunch

It was not my best mom moment.

On Wednesday as we were heading out the door to school Sweet Guy asked a simple question, “Did you make my lunch?”

Now this is an innocent enough question because 99% of the time I have indeed made his lunch.

But this time that question just sent me completely over the edge.

I had been painting our home non stop for the past two weeks. My fingernails were long gone, paint was securely streaked throughout my hair and I was beginning to fear that my hands would permanently atrophy into paintbrush holding claws.

It is a 30 year old home and believe it or not many of the areas, such as closets and ceilings, had probably never seen a paintbrush. Then there were several questionable previous owner DIY moments to overcome like dark brown bathroom walls and deep avocado green ceilings. They all required two coats primer followed by two, sometimes three, coats of paint to cover it. It was taking FOREVER to finish!

Most days I painted for 7-8 hours but the previous day I had painted for over 12 hours.

During those 12 hours I had taken a number of pain relief tablets. EVERY inch of my body hurt from climbing up and down a step ladder countless times followed by my arms being extended for long periods of time as I reached up a wall, etc.

My body was telling me I needed a break.

Sleep had evaded me on several nights. The culprit was mainly the previous issue. I was in too much pain to sleep. The other issue was 4 people and 2 dogs in one hotel room.

We all needed a break.

The laundry was overflowing, the cupboards were bare.

The housework needed me to take a break.

But I continued ignoring all the hints because of looming deadlines.

School would once again start up for me in the form of online classes on Wednesday.

The painting would be so much easier to finish in empty rooms and our furniture was set to arrive on Monday.

Pushing, pushing, pushing. I continued on ignoring it all. 

Then the phone call. Grandma Jingles was in the hospital and it was not good.

The universe was telling me to stop.

But Tuesday night I was so upset by it all I kept going.

Which led to Wednesday morning.

Poor Sweet Guy.

I started yelling.

“I was painting all day until 9 pm last night. Are you telling me that you or your dad couldn’t make your lunch? What did you do last night?”

Followed by more yelling.

You get the drift.

A big fat parenting failure.

I texted my BFF that she needed to pray for me STAT because a lack of a sandwich had caused me to lose it.

I dropped my dejected boy off at school. He was late of course so he received his second tardy in two weeks.

Then I did two things.

I asked the Fashionista to do the laundry before she left for work. She did.

I called Mr. Décor at work and asked him to open his wallet. He did.

With that I laid my paintbrush down and picked up the phone. The cavalry showed up the next day in the form of a painting crew and I took the day off. Amazingly the world did not stop spinning.

I spent some time driving along the lovely hills and serene horse ranches near Flower Mound, TX. While traveling two lanes roads I used an earpiece to speak with Grandma Jingles who had been released from the hospital. She was sent home with a diagnosis of chronic heart failure. We made plans that I would soon go visit her soon.

Deep breaths.

By the afternoon the cupboards were once again full and I was on the path to getting there.

This respite made it possible to remain calm when the painters called me on Friday afternoon and told me there was a problem with the house. The toilets were backing up into the showers.

Sigh and YUCK!

Having learned my lesson I called the one local person I knew who I thought could help me. Our realtor, Mary. She reminded me about the home warranty we had purchased. So a plumber was sent out. The verdict was we had a main line stoppage which often can occur when a house sits vacant for awhile and then suddenly the plumbing is called into action. Crises somewhat averted.

Sure glad I had taken the day off.

I know for wives and mothers there is never completely a day off.

But at least taking a day that we are not physically trying to push ourselves into an early grave is a must.

So in case you need it, I’m giving you permission to take a day off.

Laura

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." ~ Matthew 11:28-30

By the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing; so on the seventh day he rested from all his work.  And God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it he rested from all the work of creating that he had done.”~ Genesis 2:2-3

“Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.  Six days you shall labor and do all your work,  but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God.” ~ Exodus 20:8