My favorite time of year is fall. With fall comes the beginning of school. I like school. I like everything related to school. I like school supplies. One of my favorite birthday gifts from my boys was a bouquet of freshly sharpened pencils. My love of school led me to earn two college degrees in education, a bachelors degree in early childhood education and I stopped just short of getting my masters degree in special education. I taught special education until I retired to be a stay at home mom. One day, when my children no longer need me to be a SAHM, I want to go back to school. So it's no surprise that one of my favorite pieces of furniture, that we didn't build ourselves, is an old school table. This table is six feet long. I painted it an unusual shade of green, antiqued it, and I left all of the holes and dents and dings from years of students. I did remove all of the old wads of gum underneath though---you can take authenticity only so far. If you look carefully, at the end of the table, you can see the holes left from where the pencil sharpener sat.
This table was originally a hall table in our basement. But I liked it so much that I gave it a more prominent place in my living room. One day my mom asked, "Do you really think it goes there?" I nodded my head yes. Sure it's a different color than anything else in the room, and the style is different too. But it makes me happy and so it will stay, no matter what anyone says about it. Besides, I think it's a good thing to mix things up a little when it comes to the design of your home. I think your home should reflect you and your personality. And if you love something, it shouldn't matter what anyone else thinks.
Do you have a piece of furniture in your home that seems a little out of place to others, but you love it and display it proudly?
If you knew that someone was going to take a picture of the outside of your home, that would be viewed by the world, how would you like your home to look?
I would like my home to be beautiful, with flowers in full bloom, a well manicured lawn (Allow me to dream! My boys mow the lawn and it's never well manicured). I'd love to have my windows clean and sparkling in the morning sun. I'd like everything to be in it's place, including cars parked in the garage (this too is just a dream), and the driveway would have the look of cobblestone. Yes, that's how I would like my home to appear to the world. Well . . . .
Nope. When you view my home on maps.google.com, from the street view, my dream picture is not what you'll see. What you will see are cars AND the lawn mower parked in the cracked and sinking driveway. Oh, and you'll also see one of my many refurbishing projects sitting out there too, which is really a normal site for our house. Once we had a stack of old doors, that we'd found for free, sitting in the driveway waiting to be put away. They sat there long enough that a neighbor added a couple of doors to the pile just to be funny. But what was really funny, was that another neighbor asked if she could buy those doors! But I digress. . . You will also see a big ol' dead spot in the side lawn. In fact, that's how we could tell what time of year the picture was taken. You can even see some neighbor kids skateboarding down the street. It's definitely NOT a model home picture!
So, since misery loves company, I looked at other homes of people I knew. I saw one home with the barbeque grill in the driveway, one with a big garbage can sitting on the lawn. There was a home with a work trailer sitting out front being held up by a chair, and their front door was left wide open. One home had a backhoe sitting in the driveway (they were getting ready to remodel). There were multiple homes with dead lawns and wilting flowers because the pictures were taken in the heat of the summer.
I know what you're thinking! "She must live in 'red-neck' territory!" I don't. But I wouldn't be surprised if my home won for the Best Redneck Yard. If the prize is a good one, I might just enter it myself.
I just have one question for the google people. . .
WHY DON'T YOU SEND OUT A WARNING NOTICE?
I probably would have cleaned up a little if you had.
Oh well, who said my home had to look perfect at all times. My home is not my life. My home is a place where I spend my life loving, serving, laughing and enjoying my family and friends. It is the place where I house my best memories (even if they appear a little "red neck" to the rest of the world).
And google people, I do have one more question. Do you need someone to help preview the pictures of the worst homes on the block? I might be willing to do that job for free.
One of the first rooms that I began to demo was the half bath/laundry room. Originally there was a large cabinet with sink. The drawers on the cabinet would fall out every time you opened them, the woodwork was dark and the whole thing overwhelmed the room. I choose to replace it with a pedestal sink. I love pedestal sinks! They open up a small area because they don't take too much floor space and,in my opinion, they ooze with style and class. However, there was two drawbacks to my decision: 1- I would have to tile the floor where the cabinet was, and 2- I would need a place to store all of the necessities that are required in a bathroom.
Tiling the floor was easy. I had already taught myself how when I did my first cabinet tear out in the kitchen. We were fortunate enough to have boxes of left over tile when we bought the house. It's tricky to match someone else's tile job, especially when they did it the old fashioned way using mesh screen instead of cement board. The advantage is that I now know two techniques for tiling. A girl can never have too much home improvement knowledge!
To solve the lack of storage, we built this cute little cabinet using an old window as the door. I painted and distressed it so that it has the look of something that you'd find in a great-great-grandmother's home. As you can see, it fits perfectly next to the sink and is just the right size for holding bathroom essentials.
I enjoy blogging! It has been so much fun to let strangers into my home and give short home tours about stuff I've re-purposed, built, thrifted and decorated. But at this point I must confess to something, I've shown you only my best side. Yep, I admit that there has been a time or two when I've posted a lovely picture of my home that has been STAGED (insert "GASP!" here). What you see is everything looking perfect. What you don't see is the pile of stuff, off to the side, just out of the photo shot. You know what I mean---all that "stuff" that seems to naturally accumulate when you live in a family. Well, today I put on my big girl panties and I'm going to show a "REAL LIFE" post.
THIS WILL GET UGLY!
This pile of stuff belongs to my only daughter. She's newly married and has moved across the country. She flew home for a few days to visit! There's her suitcase, bags of clothes that are belated birthday gifts, as well as more wedding gifts that her in-laws brought to our home. Yeah it's a lot of stuff! And I could clean it, but seeing that stuff warms my heart. It means my daughter is back home, if only for a few days, but she's back where I can talk to her and laugh with her and enjoy every minute I have with her! No, that pile of stuff is just fine, right where it is!
Do you think less of me? Will you come back to visit?
I hope so!