Happy Memorial Day!!

In memory of all our fallen soldiers who have dedicated their lives to protecting our freedom! While I avoid political discussion in general, I will say that our top-notch military is the legs our country stand on! Regardless of our political views in these controversial times, it remains true that without our military defending our country and our freedom our way of life would cease to exist! So a SUPER BIG THANK YOU to all our armed forces for allowing me and mine to live the American Dream!!

Well I am still here and sifting through the rubble! The last couple of weeks have been serious home improvement project time for me and while I’ve been bad about taking in-progress photos, you’ll get to see the end results, PROMISE!

First things first, the living room dilemma. You may remember my call for help about what to do with the living room furniture arrangement/lack of space/ sucky lighting dilemma. Well I got a little Better Homes and Gardens inspiration in my email. Their weekly newsletter had a link to decor tips for small spaces and they mention that furniture should not be flat against the walls because that will make a small space feel cluttered and blocky, rather than casual and comfy. With that in mind, I rearranged the room like so:

While this did not replace my super annoying floor lamp, it did encase it completely behind the couch. Not seeing the entire length of it does help to hide the fact that it really doesn’t stand straight! So now I just have to deal with the annoying switch, which I can live with for now. This did accomplish my goal of freeing up more space in front of the stairs, which will one day be my entryway. While I don’t have a ‘real’ picture to show you (it is SO not picture-worthy right now because there is stuff everywhere) I must say that I’m quite happy with the arrangement and I do like that the couch is not smashed up against the wall. It’s also more in line with the TV, which DH really likes so we are happy all around 🙂

And that bedroom painting plan I had? Well things did not go quite as planned. First off, my plan to paint the alcove area the darker shade totally went out the window when I started painting and discovered this:

Yep. The walls flanking the area don’t line up! They are about 6-8 inches offset from one another, which makes for a weird transition. Solution? Toss the original idea and go with another!! So, the solution was to paint all the ‘walls’ the darker shade and the ‘ceilings’ the lighter shade. (Quotes because the ‘walls’ are super short and ‘ceiling’ is generously used to refer to the tiny landing space strip + the angled eaves we often bump our heads on!). Here are a few deep thoughts on painting:

-how come the swatch on the card matches the dot of paint they put on the top of the can in the store light and home light, but then you roll that on the wall and it takes on a new life of its own that is totally different?

–WOW, flat paint makes SUCH a HUGE difference. Huge. (for real). As previously mentioned, our walls are far from perfect. There are divets, bad seams/cracks (me thinks the previous homeowners were not-so-great at DIY, but they tried hard). We did lots of repair and sanding but it is still far from perfect. The previous wall paint was semi-gloss, which really showed everything because the light reflected right off it, but no more I say! The flat paint looks so much better!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

-I’ve decided that on all those home and garden shows when they say a color is ‘dramatic’ what they mean is “WOW! That is WAY darker than I thought it would be! But…..I think I like it. I mean, it’s different, it rich…….it’s DRAMATIC!”

My Cup of Cocoa color is dramatic. I REALLY like it.

We officially finished the last coat on the trim today! Tomorrow we can move back in and vacate the guest room (good thing since guests are due in on Thursday!) and then on Friday our new bedroom furniture will arrive, Woo-Hoo!!! Hopefully you will see pictures in the near future!!!!!

I’m not boring, PROMISE!

At least I don’t think so. But the guy in the paint department at Home Depot might have other opinions. I have this brilliant plan to paint my bedroom before the new furniture we have on order arrives. I think this is a brilliant plan! Right now the walls are tan, I like them plenty, but they are beat up from the previous owners pictures, mounted TV, etc etc and repainting them has been on the to-do list since we bought our house a little over a year ago. (yea, it’s been that long ALREADY!)

So after work today I made the trek over to Home Depot to get some of this fabulous primer/paint all in one from Behr I’ve seen commercials about. I grabbed a couple of swatches and next this you know I had a fab palette:

Oh yes, I see you trembling in excitement over this combo. (sarcasm)

Two shades of tan/beige/brown. It’s clean. I like it. Why two shades?? Here’s the room:

Here’s the plan:

Paint the large/main area in the Classic Taupe (lighter) color. Then paint the alcove/cubby in the ‘accent’ color of Cup of Cocoa, this room’s version of an accent wall. Keep the white trim (fresh coat of paint though).

So, where’s the excitement. In the accessories of course. I have hiding out in my closet my deep red curtains, red/chocolate brown/green pillows, etc. Of course, tan walls, wood floor and wood furniture might be a bit bland for the accessories to cure…..here’s hoping it works out. Nothing a few well chosen rugs can’t handle!!

Thanks to those who commented on the living room lighting conundrum. I have an idea. We’re going to try it this weekend, so stay tuned for more!!

Still here & need some help!

OK, so I haven’t done so well keeping up lately, but it’s just because I’m so darn busy lately!! So I’ve decided to expand my blog-posting to ask for help!

So, our house is quite small. “Cozy” many would call it. Thanks to an open format the main living space looks…well……open and not too “cozy.” But, it’s also very limited in options for furniture arrangement. Add the fact that the only lighting is the ceiling fan/light fixture, and you have to have either tables for lamps, floorlamps, or something. So, this is where I have trouble…….

Welcome to my living room with limited seating (not quite to scale, click on the image for full size):

So here’s where the help comes in!

First, I HATE the floor lamp. H.A.T.E. HATE! Not because of how it looks, but it functions poorly. The switch doesn’t work well and it’s never been quite level no matter how I shim it this way or that. I also feel like the corner there is just some dead space. Now one change we are making to our home is to move our front entry from the dining room to the living room, right in front of the stairwell. Of course, this is going to be a tiny entry….no foyer or mudroom, etc for us! So I feel like if I could slide the sofa closer to the half-wall and fill in that ‘dead’ space, I can free up more room for a less cluttered entry AND eliminate the dead space/hated light. However, we need the light and moving the couch would also eliminate space for the end table there. So, here are the ideas I’ve come up with, none of which I’m sold on:

1. Combo table/lamp: kinda like this guy…..which would save a tiny bit of space, but not really (so dead corner space still an issue)

2. a hanging pendant lamp in the corner, hanging over the chaise seat of the sofa: kinda like this guy……

My problem/doubt with this is that would give me 2 things hanging from the ceiling, this and the ceiling fan. Would that look weird?

And 3. a lamp/shelf combo which would go on the wall next to the sofa, like this guy……

So, is there an idea that I’ve missed? Unfortunately I feel like I don’t have a lot of options on furniture placement, and I’m not unhappy with the placement, I just think it could be better, so I’m really trying to make this work. HELP! Recruit your friends! Come tell me which option you think would be fab!! Or, scrap them all and send me an idea! Run to the comments folks, I’m desperate here!