Monday, August 25, 2014

Project Realities

As the summer months
slowly fade into the background I suddenly realize
that there is a list of projects
lingering in my very near future.

The list has always been there but 
some are more pressing
and others are merely "wanna-do-this" type affairs.

My partner has retired from teaching to take on writing full time.
That means that when I am working from home there will be two of us
working from home.
That could be a problem.

I am the type of individual that can take over the "entire" space quite easily.
I may work in the dining room in the morning
and the living room in the afternoon
and plant myself at the kitchen island in between.
So, the new rule around the house is
main floor is neutral...... 
work-free zone for everyone to enjoy.

So first up on the list is my office situation.
Once upon a time I had an office in the basement which then got taken over by my son who desperately wanted to move his bedroom down there.
I never really made the adjustment to a new office space as there was no pressing need to do so
at the time.

I have considered possibilities of what to do and it basically comes down to his old bedroom
becoming my office slash guest bedroom.

I am hoping to create a blend of office and bedroom
that provides both the visitor and myself a sense of purpose.
Calm and inviting for our guests
inspiring and engaging enough for me to want to go there.

Hmmmmm..... I hear ya.

I like the idea of some touch of drama such as
the effect of the drum shades in the image above.

I also want to blend the necessity of a bookshelf in with some artwork that gives the space
a sense of style.


I am on the hunt for a table that I can transform into a desk.
Drawers are completely unnecessary for me.... I tend to stuff them and leave them.

I know that I will have to steer away from too much "stuff"
as the bedroom side of the room will quickly feel taken over by the office side of the affair.

And I think I will go with the plan of one end office and the other end sleeping quarters.

I sort of know how this all works,
been there before.
I have learned that I cannot deal with the office-in-the-closet scenario,
and that I also don't deal well with a lot of "stuff" on the table,

I also know
that I really do need a sense of solitude in my work environment
plus a hit of drama for pull appeal.

Hmmm.... sounds like I am already at odds in my thinking
but we will see.
Yep, the clock is ticking on this project.
I started back to work.....

Monday, August 18, 2014

Returning Home

I am wondering if you know that feeling you get
when you walk into a party and see a group of people....
well friends actually,
that you have not seen in a long time.

You catch the odd sideways glance and low murmurs from around the room
that bring about a pang of regret
generally you are anxious to pick up where you left off.

With some of the people in the room you are amazed at how quickly you reconnect.
They walk up and start talking to you,
asking questions,
sharing stories
and life goes on,
moves forward.

But with others you experience glimmerings of guilt given that you haven't phoned or connected with them in any way,
to see how they are doing,
how life has treated them,
basically those things that we do to show people that we care.

You know that you cannot interrupt existing conversations to describe
those walks on the beach,
when the mist floated lazily above the sand
creating a haze of perfection
that painted a lighthouse in the distance
and a rock that seemingly portrayed the image of a man.

It is not always easy to explain that you needed time to collect
washed up sea urchins,
and sea glass,
pretty rocks and partially broken shells.

I mean the more you think about it,
the more you realize that while you were breathing in all those rich encounters of sea air,
dinners with friends,
walks on the beach,
swims in the lake,

that they too were most likely immersed in their own discovery
of a summer well spent
perhaps with new friends,
as well as some of the old....
and that like you
they are possibly struggling to capture those experiences in such a way
that they don't
disappear with the changing of seasons,
or the movement of time.

No, the thing is
you realize that
you may need to accept that your sighting of rocks within a rock
held for you
a special meaning at the time
that does not necessarily require appreciation or understanding by others.

So, you look around the room and take in the people,
the surroundings,
and recognize,
that being home and back to what once was
is kind of nice.

You decide that you can reveal some of what you experienced,
slowly over time,
but it will take time.

No, being home, is not bad at all.
You just need to open your eyes and search for what you did not see before.
The novelty that may have always been hidden in the presumed staleness
is all about perception.

Yes, I am glad to be back.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Garden Perspective

Just dropping in to give you a garden perspective.
It has been a busy month so far with parties and visitors

I do promise to get around for a visit real soon.
I wanted to share with you our latest addition to the garden.
It is a work in progress.... needs to be painted.
I think I might stain the bottom part brown.

The wood for the table was part of an old staircase that was not being used.
I need a few more dumps of pea gravel to be satisfied with the hard surface that I have chosen for this area.

But so far if the weather cooperates
we are hoping to enjoy some nice garden dinners out in this part of the yard.

Here's hoping......

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Before and After Updates

Finally the weather has started to cooperate
and agree to its terms of engagement.

June is supposed to mean sunshine  and  rapid growth of plants  and  foliage
and all things wonderful....right??

For me June plays the role of prep time for the big "partay" which in our case is July and August.

Last year we invested more time and money into the back garden area.
We had these horrible stairs that I never let anyone use
and now, we have a staircase that matches the front.... nice and wide.

It takes you right down to the back garden
which is still a work in progress but I am loving the process and not feeling any rush to have it all finished "overnight".

Oh how I love a good before and after photo.
Almost hard to look at the first one but we are happily now living with the after effect.

We picked up the cement pavers on the side of the road and they were a good temporary fix for one summer but I am so happy to now have these stairs that lead right down to the back door.

Jack seems to love them too!

We also added a roof over the back door which extends right across to the small balcony.

The shrubs are still not filled out yet and I have a lot of work before showing any garden photos but it is a work in progress
and one that I consider as a great source of relaxation right now.

More to come..... :)

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Hand Painted Walls

Hand painted walls have always intrigued me.
I don't see them that often but when I do I always find myself mesmerized by the work involved in creating them.

Traveling through Europe you get a sense, when walking through historical homes with beautifully elaborate rooms, that the walls are whispering stories to you of older years and the life lived within.

Perhaps painted walls simply reflect a time when the entire room was treated as a canvas such as the painted walls below that are over 100 years old. There was an expected permanency in these rooms. Something we don't necessarily value today.

Trends, if you could call them that, were longer-lasting.
The Handbook Authority

So when I see painted walls today I am curious.
Do the owners of those walls have a different relationship with their rooms
than the person who simply paints their room with their favourite wall colour?

A friend told me recently about a home that was sold in her neighbourhood.
The home was well known in the area due to the recent addition of elaborate hand-painted wallpaper on the dining room walls.
But obviously not everyone appreciates the effect of such a costly addition.

Apparently the new owners had that at the top of their "to remove" list.

Oh yes, the peeling of that paper created a buzz on the street and possibly some curiosity about the new homeowners as well.

This week I came upon what I consider as an amazingly effective way of creating illusion in a space that may otherwise be less appealing.
And might I add, not an easy task
and certainly one that requires the talents of a skilled artist that recognizes the art of painting walls.

Just Paint it White Blog

The type of art that tricks the viewer into believing that something is there
that in reality is not.
I had to look twice at the image above when I first visited the talented
Fiona at Paint it White.

Part of me was intrigued by the idea of a boiler room in a home
but the greater appeal was in what Fiona herself created in this room
to make it a more complete and finished space.

Just Paint it White Blog
Oh and whimsy.... lots of whimsy in this space.
I have seen wall murals before such as the one below...

Traditional Home

but this art work builds on what is already there in order to create an illusion of something more unified and complete.

Have a look for yourself.
I told Fiona that I was sending you over.

Paint it White Blog

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