One story, regardless of how good or bad, begets another. And to tell “the rest of the story” — to borrow that well-worn but never boring signature phrase of fellow Oklahoman Paul Harvey — of what transpired in my living room after my dear sister’s and aunt’s arrival on Saturday is better accomplished with camera than word:
Isn’t order a beautiful thing?
Two days later, the change is still hard to absorb, especially given how quick it happened. One might think it’d take a good eight hour day to achieve these results, but instead, it was closer to two; all total, Auntie and Sis were here four, with half the time spent at lunch and shopping at one of Sis’s favorite home furnishing stores. Of course, Sis didn’t buy a thing but both Jane and I walked out with arms full of purchases.
Sis’s decorating process is hard to describe; but I can report she’s not timid about it. She begins with big bold changes, attacking trouble spots first; at the top of her list was what to do with the hulking French armoire my husband and I do-si-doed around the room, the night before I called her. No small piece this, it could only fit in three spaces. A quick scan of the room led to instant decision and minutes after she walked in the door — I kid you not — the problem child was put in its place, just a few feet down the wall, providing immediate balance to the overall room. I didn’t even realize the south side was heavy until Sis balanced it with a few big shoves.
Sis made the rest look as easy: she centered the couch on the fireplace, traded a sofa table with a blanket chest and sent two chairs north toward the dining room to balance the armoire. Then there was an hour of fine tuning with accessories — Sis selected from candidates I produced, placing each carefully into the scene, like pieces on a chessboard. Her objective was to make whatever she grouped look attractive from all angles.
Watching the makeover reminded me a little of that familiar scene in the movie Mary Poppins, where Julie Andrews restores order in the children’s nursery with quick snapping of fingers while singing “A Spoonful of Sugar.” Of course, Sis didn’t snap or sing but made her snap changes with good old fashion heavy lifting.
Yet, I don’t think Sis fully realizes what a gift she has and is. What for me is easier “said” than done — for Sis — is easier done than said. Isn’t’ that the beauty of working with others — even leaning on others when need be — since we become more balanced by borrowing strength from another?
I *so* need your sister…
I spent some hours today trying to clean tody and reorganise the living space downstairs(living room and dining room knocked into one room) and while I am happyish with the results, it took me forever to do barely one half of the space. The best I ever seem to achieve is a home that is Bohemian and more than a little bit odd to outsiders.
The room looks stunningly beautiful; you could fit our entire downstairs into it, I think. I can imagine sipping a lemonade and chatting in this space.
thanks for sharing.
Oh, I feel your pain, and you know from reading my life that this is not an empty phrase. But I’m glad you’re happy with what you did today.
As for Sis’s makeover of my living room, If enough folks say the word “stunning” or something similar, maybe Sis will start to believe in her gift and begin a moonlighting makeover business.
Thanks for dropping in — Wish I could welcome you with lemonade in my new improved living room.
It does look nice doesn’t it/
It’s such a relief to have one room done — pictures hung, etc.– though I know Sis never thinks of a room as ‘done.’ Tonight we’re having your stew for supper — we waited til Kyle came home from Norman to enjoy your gift of a home-cooked meal. Already, the house is smelling good — it’s been simmering in the crock pot for several hours now.
Glad you came — and received the added bonus of finding a new outfit to wear to your high school reunion. Seems like we run across the best things when we’re not looking, whether it’s a new outfit or a new house.
I spent my growing up years in a “centered and symmetrical” family. Then I discovered the power of “WHOMP! – Shove that big ol’ cabinet down there in the corner and let’s rebalance this place!”
There’s one change I’d make, but I’m going to be a meanie and not tell you what it is. I’ll just lurk around and see what happens.
I surely am looking around with an appraising eye. I’m ready for some changes, myself. 😉
You do have my curiosity. But for now, the only change I’m making in the living room — with all the other fine-tuning required in the rest of the house — will be to move that small french cabinet by the sofa. It ruins the lines of the couch, don’t you think — and it doesn’t quite pass Sis’s test of looking good from all angles. With time, maybe I’ll happen upon the one you see so clearly. And then again, maybe not.
It’s funny how moving furniture can give us fresh perspectives — on several levels. Mom always said it was the only way she could really clean a room. So here’s to moving furniture and to cherished relationships — sometimes they go hand-in-hand — even miles down the road or across an ocean.
Have finally caught up with my reading and commenting.
Everything looks beautiful.
Best wishes to you in your new home and
I just came from the living room, where like Goldilocks, I’m trying out different spots to find my morning writing space. Today I was settled in a chair facing the window, with one light on in a room crowded with shadows, since we are in the midst of a line of glorious thunderstorms. As many do, we need the rain bad and I confess to watching rain fall more than words on the page.
The room did turn out lovely and I’m grateful to my sister and aunt for coming to help set things right. It’s amazing how when one room comes together, the others seem to follow suit. Maybe it’s this way with life as well. At least a little.