Monday, June 30, 2008

Oooh yeah, the Den!

{Ahem} It is said, in my household, "Martha Stewart doesn't live here." If I were more inclined toward 19th century pursuits (yes, yes - "as opposed to 18th century", I heard that from you in the back over there) I would have lots of samplers on my walls saying things like: "A Tidy Room is the Sign of a Chaotic Mind" or "To Have the Best Seat in the House You'll Have to Move the Cat."
It has, might I add, always been thus. I remember looking at my kitchen floor while holding my infant daughter (and in their turns, each infant son) and thinking, "I can wash and polish my floor. Or I can a) play with my baby; b) read something; c) knit something; d) go to the zoo; d) play get the picture. The only time my kitchen floor had a gleaming glow to it - was the day we moved in. Now, don't get me wrong, I'm not a slob, really. I once overheard one of my sons reply to a little friend who had come over to play, "It's not messy, it's busy . That became my watchword.

Having said that - I think I've said here before, this is the Summer of the Purge. It has gotten to me; to keep myself honest, I will post about the process, with before-and-after pictures. (You do realize, do you not, that I am fervently praying that you forget all about this, but nevermind.)

So there's the den, happily anticipating becoming a guest room/den/writing room/cool room (it's where the air-conditioner is). Books, papers, files, papers, pigs -- there IS an absence of baskets of yarn; they had already been moved into the living room, where they nestle (still, but nevermind) waiting to go down and join the Stash. The couch-oid is actually a futon, very comfy. (When not occupied by pigs, books, &c &c) I cannot tell a lie - when someone's coming over, it's VERY EASY to slide things in there and close the door. Do that a time or two (OK, 20) and it gets to look like......see above.

I have a desk in there too, upon which to...write. I have a power strip in there for Daisy, and I can take in a stool that puts me at the right height. Here? Well, lets' see. The requisite piles of papers, extra glasses, pictures, headphones, shoe polish, several antique etiquette books - isn't that what everyone has on their desks? NO?? Hmmm!

NOTE: Because that IS what passes here for a guest room, I've arranged the books in there accordingly, and many of them are short stories or collections or picture books, the sort of thing someone might enjoy leafing through before going to sleep. Don't you hate it when you pick up a book somewhere and get hooked - and then have to leave it behind and wait until you get to a library, or you have to steal it....not that anyone would do THAT, but you know. Nevermind. So anyway, that's why I selected the books in there. As part of the Cleaning, however, I rearranged a number of books and repositioned my writing books and reference books and so on, so they'll be at hand too. Now for the great unveiling:

MUCH better! And the books are sorted and rearranged, the futon can be opened and made up easily, there's a box of tissues, the reading lamp works -- all is ready. If you "biggify" you can see my lovely bonnets on top of the bookcase - it looks like Jonny-the-Clown is pointing at them. What? Jonny? Oh, well yeah. He's a clown, probably from the Ringling Bros. I rescued saved bought him at the Museum. (To tell you the truth, I don't know why, don't know where he'll ultimately go....WHOOAH! What a great contest prize!) I'm kidding, I'm kidding!

And the desk? Yep, got that too - I moved the etiquette books to the bookcases. I have sort of a collection, I have a *thing* about manners, courtesy and etiquette, truth to tell, and I adore reading those old books. I have a Power Point program I do on 19th century manners and the ways of women at that time.

I've moved the things under the desk now, and I'm thinking that photo box on the corner might be moved to the bedside table, still thinking on that. But there IS room now for Daisy, my reference and writing books are in there, and all is ready for me to "git down" and do some serious writing. I believe I mentioned - it seems as though my Writing Time is after 10:30 pm; I know that I DO need to separate myself from the teevee and so on. I'm glad I'll be able to do that now. Also - if you enlarge this picture, you'll see on the wall there a drawing of my Neopet, (a Blumaroo) which my Lovely Daughter got for me at one of her conventions. I admit it - I really like the games on Neopia , so that sketch is a real prize for me.

Gee, I'm being kind of revealing, aren't I? Hmmmmmmmm - where'd I put that Dr Who scarf?

Editor's note: I had an error in the 4th paragraph, which I have corrected, with apologies to all and THANKS to Yarndork!!


Alwen said...

I love my old etiquette books. I have a couple of Emily Posts, and there's nothing like opening at random and reading how many sets of linen tablecloths in various lengths I'm going to need to get me giggling.

*sigh* They're like little time machines.

Anonymous said...

Excellent before and after pictures!. My afters always seem to look like everyone else's befores ::sigh::

Marjorie said...

Et, great job! Ready for company (eg)
? You do remember that Etiquette Books are yet another ET thang... We ought to exchange bibliographies on just that subject. I'll compile mine today!

MX said...

I'm impressed! A bit worn out but impressed.
I did some cleaning of my home office space this weekend but embarrassed to take a before. Now I wish I had!

Anonymous said...

Good job! Here's a couple of things that might make you smile as a reward:

1. The Broadway musical "Teddy & Alice" is showing at the Como Park pavilion several times during the first half of July. If you time it right, we can do yarn crawl and theater!

2. I thought of you as soon as I saw this. There are a lot more in the related videos column.


PS - On preview, it doesn't look like the link came through. I split it up to make it work, you'll have to cut and paste. Sorry!

Anonymous said...

Very nice! Martha Stewart doesn't live in my house, either. But Martha Stewart's Mini Me lives next door.

cheesehead with sticks said...

Good work!

You think this is revealing - wait until you see my "dungeon studio before" pictures... Mr. CH would die if he found out I was going to post them. I can only hope to actually have "after" pictures in the next 2 months!

I find it ironic that you are doing power point presentations of 18th century manners. I don't know why, I just do.

Elizabeth said...

Excellent work on that cleaning. When you finish over at your place, I'll have to have you over here. ;)

Anonymous said...

I love that you took the time to do something that was bothering you. Now, please forgive me for doing the same...In your 4th paragraph, near the end, you mention something about it being "very easy to shove things in their and close the door" or something like that. But, you use the word "their" instead of "there". Aaaaaaaggggggghhhhhh! I get out my red pen and cross that out.

I'm sure you didn't mean it. You are, after all, a writer. I think you did it just to see who'd catch it.

dale-harriet said...

OH. MY. GOSH!! I absolutely appreciate your catching that, Yarndork!! Mea culpa - and you know, it's absolutely true, things like that just GRATE on me, I actually got goosebumps reading that. It does just go to show you the value of proofreading.

Now I'm going to see if I can correct it........

Anne Boleyn said...

Oh, I feel so much better now that you've shared this room. I have what I call "meaningful piles" that contain stuff that I need to deal with in some way, sometime. Tidy people don't understand that it's almost always possible to get what one needs from the correct pile in short order, so there's no real rush to deal with it. Today I did a bit of tidying in my dressing room (which also doubles as my bathroom, but it sounds so much more spacious to refer to those rooms as if they were separate). The room also serves as my meditation spot where I can think good thoughts for folks while I light a few candles for them. Now it's a lot nicer without all the things that had landed in there and are now in meaningful piles in my bedroom. Maybe I'll have at that tomorrow. Maybe.