Change

journal entry:

I change things around. If my changes run too deep, Grandpa is frustrated because he can’t find things. He prefers to put something somewhere and leave it there forever. That way, he never has to wonder where it is. Today, I am talking about changing home decor to fit the seasons or to make things feel different in a good way.

When you change things, they feel new. They feel like old friends whom you haven’t seen for a time. I have always loved changing things around but Grandpa is the one who has to push the furniture around and patch the holes in the walls. He does both with nary a complaint because he knows me and knows what makes me happy.

The most dramatic change I have made recently involves the living room.

We have always felt like this little room was silly and useless. It isn’t really big enough for any kind of gathering of people and so it has sat quietly on the edge of the rest of the house looking pretty but saying nothing.

Of course, the piano is there and before today a sofa was there but not much more. Now it is different. I made a little reading nook in the corner with a wicker chair and footstool that I love and when I am tucked into it I am actually enjoying being in the room with a clear purpose.

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Where you see the bookcases, there used to be a sofa and above the sofa, two large paintings of botanicals which I bought twenty five years ago at The Black Goose. It wasn’t like me to leave something in place for almost 20 years in any home we have lived in, but it all seemed right. Most of the time there was no rug on the floor but when there was, it was small and dark. Autumn colors in deep tones have always been my favorites.

Grandpa wonders if I was born in a forest. Maybe.

The wonderful, dark green sofa is now in Heather’s loft. That is where her children play with toys and she plinks away at her computer. One of my favorite things about getting older is being able to give nice things away, especially the kind of things that people truly want.

The sofa looks like it belonged in her house all along.

This is the point where I talk about thrifting for without my passion for it, much of what I am moving around wouldn’t budge. It is the most wonderful way to change things around for almost nothing. And, a person gets better and better at finding things they love. 

I have steered clear of the thrift stores during the pandemic. However, I have recently started prowling around wearing a face mask with a bottle of sanitizer sticking out of my purse. I use the baskets that have been sanitized and keep my distance from living, breathing people as does almost everyone else.

Almost everyone. 

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The bookcases which I used to replace the sofa used to be in the family room on the wall behind the piano. Grandpa moved them in for me and I rearranged the books. Almost every book you see was thrifted. The “table books” are mostly on the top and the rest of the books are those I want to keep and those I re-read. The mirrors are both thrifted. In their cases, I didn’t hang them on the wall but leaned them against it so that I could move them around more easily. I love mirrors as anyone who has been in my home knows. Mirrors expand the space and bring interest into every room. I recently invested in a very nice radio/CD player, much like the Bose brand. It fits right into the browns and greens on top of the bookcases but that is not why I bought it. That was a bonus.

I LOVE IT. 

Willie Nelson and Nancy Griffith are once again a part of my life. The radio makes classical music sound like it is a live symphony in the room. Because of its position in the house, with the wide opening above the piano, music can be easily heard throughout the house. 

You might recall that the wall behind the piano used to be solid.

Grandpa cut it out and finished it beautifully so that we feel like we have more space and more connection with people in the family room and kitchen. That is why the music from the radio flows so easily. The primary piece of art on the wall right now is the watercolor Grandpa made of Olive carrying a bucket of carrots to the horses. You can’t see the detail in this picture but you know the one I’m talking about. The other pictures on the wall are all about work and are in autumn tones. The rug is new and is 8×8 square. It has some soft brown tones in it. I am thankful for Amazon. I came to know it well during the past few months.

You can see that change and cozy stuff matters to me. It makes my heart happy and my eyes comfortable.

Yesterday was lamp day at the thrift store.

Not officially but because I love lamps and someone had donated three beautiful, heavy and unusual lamps. Two were without shades but I found one shade for $1.99 – 20% which is now on the table between the sofas in the family room. Since I am drawn to an eclectic style and love texture, I was in heaven when I found these lamps. This one was priced at $2.99 – 20%.

I feel good about the whole thing.

Here is a look in the other direction.

This, too, was a thrifted mirror. I moved it from one room to another. If you are wondering about the little white dots on the piano, they are little felt pads which keep the piano lid from crashing down on little fingers.

Here is one of the three lamps I thrifted just yesterday.

I am going to put it on top of the sideboard in the kitchen. I will put the lamps away that have faithfully provided kitchen light for some time in favor of one larger lamp. Most of the decor I have in my house is interchangeable. That means that I can drag it around from room to room because it will blend in just fine. That is the advantage of eclectic styling and a non-restrictive color scheme. Next month, I might put it on the dresser in the bedroom. Who knows?

I think that I will finish up this post with something from the playroom.

I found this lovely framed print of families going to church. By the clothes, it is likely from the 1950’s because I remember the styles worn by the adults and also by the children. I especially love the feeling of peace that comes with the illustration because things seem right in the world.

I put it in the playroom so that my grandchildren could feel it too.

” My advice: Make your house a home and don’t second-guess yourself.”

-Grandma-

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