#85 There's work and then there's work...

So sometimes you have to stop the work you're doing to do your real work.

Case in point?

When I finished painting the living room this afternoon, I grabbed my camera:

Today was so satisfying. Fresh paint and fresh images. About as good as it gets!

-karen anne


#84 Oy.

It ain't easy being super sensitive to the slightest nuances of color.

But not having the right shade/tint/hue can drive me nutso. Really nutso.

So I'm repainting the rooms I just painted. And with just the edges cut in so far, I'm already breathing easier!


There's a BIG difference! The back is the Churchill Hotel Navajo White I did first. The second is Malted Milk; a wee bit darker and a bit less yellow.

Anyway, it makes the incredible trim we have around the windows in this historic home stand out and shine...just the way it should.

Little things mean a lot. In life and in color choices for one's home!

-karen anne

p.s. Wondering where I've been? Up to Rochester, NY meeting my future son-in-law's mom who's now a wonderful new friend, and down to Bethesda MD shopping with Megan for the fabric for her wedding gown! (We found the perfect silk - and once I get finished painting and making slipcovers I can start on it!)


#83 O'Happy O'Day!

St. Patrick's Day is triggering memories of our magical trip to Ireland:

Is it time for my Guinness yet??? Here's to ya!

-karen anne


#82 Lightness and Serenity

Perhaps it's the Norwegian in me that craves light - and lightness - in both environment and spirit. Maybe it's the time of year.

But whatever it is, there comes with it an incredibly strong urge to throw off the blankets that have cloaked my body and soul.

This yearning to take flight and be free of all that encumbers me is revealed in everything I do of late; a searching for both lightness and serenity.

As I've bared my walls and repainted, and cleared surfaces and drawers, my spirit has rebounded and my thoughts are clearer. I'm intent on moving away from things that weigh me down. Possessions, ideas - even friendships - that drain my energy are being set free. I'm finding that these changes are creating the space for my spirit to grow in lightness and the space for my soul to find the serenity it needs.

God grant me the serenity 
   to accept the things I cannot change,
The courage to change the things I can,
And the wisdom to know the difference.

Gold cranes on the Japanese Obi hanging in our living room.

-karen anne


#81 In the bleak mid-painting...

The painting is finished - the walls at least - and pictures of a more put-together home will follow shortly.

Till then, however, here's what we've been living in/on/around (yikes!):

New wall color on the left, old color on the right.

The pocket doors between the two rooms are magnificent and work beautifully. Unfortunately 
they are still painted pale blue...someday I'll get them painted I guess, but since we don't 
close the doors they really aren't on my radar of things that need doing.

Oh, what the heck... here's a snippet of my puttering results:

My mother-in-law did this wonderful painting - so glad we were lucky enough to inherit it!

Okay. That's it for a few days - I need to get busy painting woodwork!

-karen anne


#80 Aaaaah....

We suffered water damage on this wall about, oh, 5 years ago... it had become
invisible to us somehow, but I know visitors must have wondered about it!

Only took five years and two hours to fix it! Nice, huh?
I know I've shown more photos of my bookcases than you care to see, but it is such a thrill for me to see these getting fixed - and the wall, too. I hope you'll understand and forgive me. It's just so....... nice! And I am sooooooo happy!

Now that I've finished all the prep and priming, I can start applying the wall color tomorrow. What has been a golden yellow for many years will be covered with Valspar's Churchill Hotel Navajo White; a National Trust for Historic Preservation color. Not your run of the mill Navajo White, this is more cream than beige. I can't wait to have our living spaces freshened up with lighter paint. Quite a change since I've had such intense wall colors for so many years!

If you have a burning desire to paint, grab your brushes and come on over!

-karen anne


#79 But wait! There's more!!!

Not one to leave well enough alone, and not wanting to waste the trim I had originally thought would work on the top of the bookcases, I added it to the edge of each shelf. I now present to you the most spectacular bookcases this house has ever seen:

Why didn't they do this in the first place??? They look like they go with the house now.

Just to remind you, here's what they looked like before I started:

So...maybe tomorrow I can finally get everything primed and maybe even start painting. I'm glad I took the time to fix the bookcases, though, because it makes a huge difference in the room.

Anyone want to come help slide the piano a few feet so I can get a ladder in that corner???

-karen anne


#78 Just Sayin'...


And after:

It might seem a little thing, but it's something that's been bugging me since we bought the house. The bookcases just never seemed finished. The proportion was off with the top just ending the way it did. But they look RIGHT to me now. I still have to caulk a bit because absolutely nothing is square or even in our home, (and, of course, do all the painting that this allowed me to put off a bit longer!) but I have to tell you, just adding this bit of trim to the tops of the bookcases has made me feel like a new woman. Really! Doesn't take much to make this Mama happy.

Just sayin'!

-karen anne


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