Guess what? We’re starting on a new room in the house! The dining room was getting a little jealous of how good the living room is looking so we’re going to show it some long overdue love. I need to get my thoughts together on it – probably in the form of a mood board. But for the moment we know one thing we’d like to do the room. Brighten it up!
Long skinny close-together houses like ours always suffer from little light in the middle of the lowest floor. That would be our dining room. If you look out our dining room window you can see right into our neighbors window well – the small indentation of their house that has windows on three sides – a neat little trick to get light into multiple rooms from one location. So we need some privacy screening at the window, but the blinds that we currently have are always closed and so this room has zero natural light.
A few weeks ago we saw some cool window film on Fab – we were too slow to act on it and score it on sale, but we’re still going to go this route in the dining room, and possibly a few other rooms. The half bath would be nice as well – that room also looks great with a lot of natural light and no one closes and then reopens the blinds every time they use it.
The other room we might do this in is the master bathroom. We actually have zero privacy control at that window, and it aligns with the dining room window below, which means it also stares right into the neighbor’s house – but the tub / shower is a freestanding claw foot tub so it has shower curtains and liners on both side. We rarely pull back the rear curtain. So film on the window isn’t entirely necessary in here – still, I’d like the option to pull the curtains back and get a little more light in the room when we’re not showering – especially if we decide to go deep indigo on the wainscoting in the future.
I’m really leaning towards that top pattern, Otto, by Emma Jeffs – available through 2Jane. I also like Pearl below.
And a few others by Purl Frost Window Film:
Those last three aren’t quite as cool as the top two, but I do like the fact that you order what you need from Purl Frost vs. buying a set sheet size from Emma Jeffs. Time to take some measurements and make a decision. Let there be light!
The church I attended as a child (and where my family and my sister’s family still attend) participates in an interfaith national (maybe international?) program called Prayers and Squares. The general concept is that a quilt is made for someone in need of prayers for any reason. The quilt has a series of threads attached and each member of the church community touches the quilt – tying a knot in one of those threads – while offering up a prayer for the recipient. The idea was started in a United Methodist Church in California when the quilting group there had a member with a two-year-old grandson in grave condition following heart surgery. They quickly put a brightly colored quilt together for his hospital bed, and since there was no time to quilt it, the members hastily tied brightly colored threads to hold the layers together, declaring that the ties that held the quilt together must be the representation of so many prayers for him uttered by those quilters that day.
This quilt is for my niece, and her name is on it (although I covered it in this photo). A few special people made this quilt happen, but many others touched it for just a moment, offering up prayers of healing and patience and strength to E and her family – our family.
Hearing that community prayer lifted up for her was very hard for me – I still feel a crushing sense of sadness and helplessness whenever I think of her. I was so very grateful for that moment, for her, but the words are just so hard to hear. Why is that? I can think them in my mind, but when I hear them spoken or when I write them out the tears just flow from the very center of me and they don’t stop. I put the quilt away for seven days, in the closet, out of sight – it was too, too much, with the stories from Boston and E’s night in the hospital and all the pain and stress of that week. Sunday came around again, and the house was quiet and still. I pulled it out to look it over and laid it across my lap. My mother told me that usually the quilt makers take the quilt down after the service and double check the knots to make sure they are secure, and they trim the threads to an even length before wrapping it up to give to the recipient. Since we left to drive home soon after the service I knew that I needed to do that last step. I spread the quilt out over the bed and felt each knot with my fingers, and trimmed them to length with a pair of my grandmother’s scissors. If you can double knot a thread, you can double-pray a knot as well. It can’t hurt, can it? I wrapped it up and put it in the mail.
I whisper a thousand knots a day for her. At least that many.
Posted in general
Tagged family, gifts
Little projects can be really, really aggravating.
When I mentioned the act of shifting a few weeks ago, one of the real time examples of shifting going on in our house was in F’s room. This wall may be the death of us. First it was a computer station in the studio. Then it was a nursery wall with magnetic paint under the wall paint so that we could shift artwork around above the desk – we just added magnetic tape on cards and drawings, etc. Then the magnetic paint created this impermeable barrier between indoors and outdoors, and that – coupled with a southwest corner wall needing tuckpointing and an old roof needing replacing (both of those are happily off the list now) – meant that the heat and humidity in the wall really built up and the wall didn’t breathe at all, so the drywall disintegrated and the only thing holding the desk and the artwork up was – I swear – magnetic paint. I apologize for the previous run on sentence, but I just wanted to spit it all out and be done with it.
We stripped the wall, we fixed the wall, we painted the wall. (Honestly – if you look at that last link, the post was titled “second times a charm.” Ha. But for some reason – in some places – you could see the green of the moisture resistant drywall showing through the paint after awhile. We might have used old primer or not painted the wall well enough. Regardless, it bugged me.
So we shifted everything off the wall and re-primed, re-caulked and re-painted.
[M just walked into the room behind me and said “Are you blogging about that wall again? Get some new content, lady. Linking to old content is not new content.” He is right.]
But that’s sort of the point. It’s not all glamorous-never-before-seen-before-and-afters around here. It’s just a Thursday night with a caulk gun, a Friday night with a paint brush, a Saturday morning with a screwdriver and a vacuum, and a Sunday afternoon with a hammer and some museum putty. This time I didn’t even think about the layout. I just started hanging pieces up, stepping back and hanging some more. I love this wall, and all the little stories behind those things that hang on it.
I fully expect to have to deal with this wall again at some point – the renovation gods seem to like this corner of the house. But at least for now it’s done – everything is shifted back into place and F is once again at her desk – playing DJ with her CD’s and watercoloring up a storm.