There have been some changes around here. Big changes. The kind of changes that make you forget you have a gargantuan load of laundry in the washing machine until three days after you put the load in there but the thought of putting the clothes through a cycle AGAIN and forgetting about them AGAIN is so overwhelming that you squeeze your eyes shut and hope, HOPE! that all that Law of Attraction stuff is real and your own personal energetic housekeeping fairy is going to come buzzing through the door in a blaze of glory to solve difficult challenges like perpetual laundry for you because you know that if you have to work this tricky one out in addition to all the rest of it you WILL pop an important blood vessel and you’re going to end up with an angry looking buggy eye. And a creepy twitch.
Hold your horses, folks: I am not pregnant.
And I didn’t finally get on Oprah (dammit).
I. Changed. Jobs.
This is a big deal. I went from working for someone else in a shiny, mostly organized office to work for MYSELF in my own, still shiny albeit slight less organized home office. I went from turning to my friendly saviour tech guys and taking a Medium Non-Fat Latte Break when something computer-ish went awry to having to launch into these harrowing hiccups on my own and having to do all the violent swearing MYSELF.
AND. Part of the preparation for this change involved a visit from my mom so I could put her elbow deep into some home reno tasks. She’s a good sport like that.
And finally, there was an office that I look forward to spending time in every day:
For paint colours, we settled on a Low-VOC, flat matte “Gentry Blue” with “Quiet Retreat” for the trim. We got our supplies from Home Depot: You know that little magical computer hanging out by all the paint chips? SUPER HELPFUL. It directed us to a trim colour that would work with the blue, relieving us of the “why-in-the-hell-are-there-so-many-shades-of-white” stress.
I am really happy with the colour- I wanted something bold without overpowering the room given that it isn’t very big.
I like what I look at every day to mean something to me. I like to be surrounded by framed photos of my friends and family. I always try to find momentos from places I’ve travelled that make me smile when I look at them. As soon as I saw these pictures I knew I wanted to look at them every day. I like the messages. Plus cherries are awesome.
My “Free” picture reminds me chill out:
Oh the bookshelf. The freaking, freaking bookshelf. “Before” this monstrosity was in our living room taking up way too much room. I got it for free a couple years ago and it had a lowbrow whitewashed wood thing going. For free it was pretty dang fabulous, but honestly, it was an eyesore and drove me crazy. I wish I had taken a good “before” photo, but you can kind of see a bit of it here behind Kayloo.
I hammered out the back panel and my mom and I painted it black. All kinds of black. 4 COATS OF BLACK. Even after 4 coats it still isn’t perfectly black, but my mom and I labelled this look “distressed “a.k.a. “good enough.” Every home reno project has an important “Holy crap I can’t look at this anymore” element. I know you know what I’m talking about.
My mom got John and I these super cute ceramic coffee cups- my desk has a glass top so we picked out these black felt coasters so I won’t crash a hole in my desk every time I slam my caffeine down in sheer genius exuberance.
We searched around for standard storage boxes that looked kind of like this, but couldn’t find anything for some reason. So we settled for round boxes that zip close. Right now I am using the big box to store cords (computer, camera etc) and the small box to store paper clips and other knick knack type things. I think I’ll need to search again for more storage as time goes on, but for now these funky beasts are working it.
The whole process took us 6 days. Two days for scoping, long lunches and a bit of non-reno related shopping; two days for painting (two rooms: office and bedroom; bedroom isn’t an “After” yet) plus half a day for touch-ups and finishing up the “black” shelf. Half a day to assemble the furniture (we would have been faster if THE DAMN INSTRUCTIONS HAD BEEN RIGHT) and then arrange said furniture. After that we took a day for the various odds and todds that creep up in any fixer-upper endeavour.
And it was fun. We started at around 8am and usually ended at about 9pm each night but we got on a roll, found that trash-talking really does help the time go by… and talked about pretty everything under the sun. You know, mom and daughter stuff. We make a good team. I learned a lot from my mom. My office would probably be taupe with the wrong colour white trim if she hadn’t been there.
Thank you, mom! Your help was awesome. But the best part, as always, was your company.
There will be more projects in the near future. Oh, yes. Yes indeed…