Saturday, August 31, 2013

Racketty Revelry

 I can't imagine a better choice for my August book than Frances Hodgson Burnett's Racketty-Packetty House. It's a charming romp behind the scenes of a young child's nursery, complete with fairies, mice, and even a real life princess. Content, however, played second fiddle to the title for me as our house has begun to take on quite the "racketty-packetty" air this month. 
 Don't get me wrong, work on project "Cottage Quest"
is still very much under way what with the painting of...
to that...
 and the other.
 It's just that in addition we've had to add in quite a bit of back to school shopping...
 and college bound doings into the mix as well.
The end result, now as August draws to a close, is I'm afraid nothing to write home about. In fact, if anything, our day to day living environment is even farther away from "summer cottage living" than it was a month ago.
But, and I remind myself of this daily, when I took this on I knew it was not going to be a quick fix. I also knew there would be many steps involved and that they would more than likely follow the 3 forward one back pattern. What I forgot, however, was to take time to enjoy some of my favorite things along the way.
 So I grabbed a cuppa (thanks mom for the new mug with the oh so appropriate message!)
 I welcomed a new friend into my world (thanks to MOJO and it's wonderful supply of Budkins, an amazing kissing cousin line of dolls to the Woodettes!)
 And I refreshed myself in the joys of making French knots.
 All combined it made for a lovely tea time that restored
my energy,
my enthusiasm,
my faith in happy endings. 
So now perhaps on second thought, the content of Racketty-Packetty House is important...especially the part where the princess says,
"Your house shall be mended and papered and painted and made as lovely as ever."
And it was!!!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Time To Paint

 This has been my week.
 Project "Cottage Quest" is officially underway.
It was decided that the kids rooms would be the first to tackle. All three of our not-so-wee ones wanted to swap rooms. For several years now dear daughter had been envious of the boys' walk in closet while the boys often dreamed of creating some very cool Comic-Con inspired displays on the built in shelves dear daughter's room hosted. Considering, however, dear daughter had previously employed these same shelves as her personal doodle canvas it was definitely time to paint!
 The first step in the process seemed easy enough, I simply told the kiddos,
"Pack up your stuff!"
Dear daughter seemed to grasp the concept well enough but the boys.....
 ...NOT SO MUCH!!!
 We persevered however and eventually.....
 .....cleared enough wiggle room to proceed to the next steps.
Thank goodness our resident bichon was on hand to assist!
 We removed the carpets and all those pesky little staples they use to tack down the padding.
 We spackled.
We sanded.
We vacuumed.
And of course......
We painted the walls, the floors, the trim, and the bookshelves in colors dubbed things like "Flowering Herbs" and "Summer Festival."
And then, when all was said and done guess what I did?
I swept the floor.
It was the greatest feeling.
  Remember I had thought cottage housekeeping would involve no more than the sweep of a broom or the swipe of an apron's edge?  It seems I'm headed in the right direction!
Now I just need to bring that reality to the rest of the house...


Saturday, August 3, 2013

A Sigh of Relief

For 20 years this thing has followed me around.
 How it did so is beyond me considering its tremendous weight and cumbersome build!
All in all it wasn't a bad looking piece.
 Although on most days its virtues were obscured by whatever superhero/transformer/alien Child #3 was currently obsessed with. On top of that the poor thing was squished in a corner and its keys rarely saw the light of day. 
Combine that with my new found desire to clear the clutter and dust from our home and it was time for that dear old piano to go on to greener pastures.
Enter Mario, a musician by trade but also an expert piano mover of sorts.
Yesterday as I stood on the porch and watched the two of them drive off together I had myself a huge sigh of relief. Not only were musician and instrument delighted to have found each other but I myself had found tremendous joy in the act of letting go.
Granted this is only a first step of many to come but it was a huge one and one that makes my new so-called "Cottage Quest" a reality. Yes I want to live in a cottage. More specifically, a summer cottage. You know the ones where possessions are bare bones, natural light is in abundance, and there is always time for a game of cards. In such a humble abode housekeeping would involve no more than the sweep of a broom or the swipe of an apron's edge and meals would revolve around the seasonal offerings at the local market.
Now, considering the basic architecture of our home is in that of the garrison style, it actually looks nothing like a summer cottage. But guess what? I don't care. I will do the best with what I've got and in the process hopefully experience some of the joys I imagine summer cottage living bestows on its inhabitants. 
So get ready....there's clearing and carting ahead along with a good deal of prying, parting, and painting. Who knows how long it will take? Who cares?
 In fact, do they even keep track of time in a cottage?
I know I won't.
When the sun rises it'll be time to get up. When the sun sets it'll be time to go to bed. And anything in between I shall consider time for fun! 
Care to join me....