Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What IS this room, anyway?

When we moved into this house almost two years ago, there was one room that we weren't really sure what to do with. It was very obvious that this room wasn't well-planned. The awful wood paneling was dark and dingy; there was a horrid forest-green coat of glossy paint on the trim (including an almost randomly-placed chair rail that made NO sense), and the bottom third of the paneling had been painted WHITE! Look at how awful this was ...

Yes, as a matter of fact, that *is* an avocado-green laminate countertop you see on that shelf. Pretty awful. It was very dark, cold, and cave-like in there. I knew I couldn't live with this nightmare long, so I set about getting ideas for what I could do for a short-term fix. It took FIVE layers of paint--two of primer, three coats of yellow--to cover that paneling. And when I removed the painter's tape from the wall after painting the trim, the tape took some of the paint with it. Lovely. But you know what? Even though it's not perfect, it is MUCH better. I couldn't see this room as anything other than a dining room, thanks to the fireplace in there causing an odd traffic pattern. After the paint, it became our dining room.

 Not too bad, but after almost a year, it felt ... not right. Not close enough to the kitchen, and we still didn't enjoy using it all that much. So ... it became the schoolroom! I kind of liked having this bright, cheerful space for the girls to do their schoolwork in.

HOWEVER ... time and daily life dictated that this space needed to be something else. The schoolroom becomes cluttered very easily, and it just wasn't working out. We would get sick of seeing the school-clutter, and it wasn't pleasant having the back door right smack in the middle of where we were all trying to work. The dog going in and out, the cats wanting in and out, KASEY wanting in and out ... we just needed a better plan. So even with the sore and weak shoulder, I acted on my "wild hair" and switched things up AGAIN. I'm thinking this just might stick! The schoolroom is now in the bonus room, and Pete's workspace remains untouched (he was worried about that!). It actually works out fairly well to have all of the work-stuff in one room. I'll get pictures of that when it is closer to finished. But my "yay" moment was getting that odd back room turned into a little reading nook! LOVE this. Love, love, LOVE!

This is now a very cheery, HAPPY place to curl up with a book and just RELAX. There is no screen anywhere in this room. The outlets aren't even three-pronged, so we can't even hook up a laptop to charge! Archaic, I know ... but there really is something completely wonderful about a room where no technology invades. Well, unless you count my Nook e-reader? I cannot WAIT to get the fireplace and chimney repaired so I can curl up in here under the afghan my grandmother crocheted and just enjoy a crackling fire while I read and sip a cup of tea. It has long been a dream of mine to have a reading room that I can escape to when I can't manage to find quiet. I really need to get something on the walls, but right now I just don't know WHAT!? It'll get there. At the moment I'm enjoying it far too much to focus too much on blank walls!

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