Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Task #7: Great Room

The job today covered much more space than usual but is simpler because it is our "minimal" area of the house. It is the first room people see when they walk into the house. The kids clean it twice weekly and I try to vacuum down there every other day.

My goal for it is: uncluttered, simple, spacious, shining. Needless to say it does not live up to that vision very regularly, but that's what I was aiming for this morning -- getting everything possible off the surfaces.

Preparation -- the day before

  • Brendan brought the big box of printer paper upstairs
  • I brought an old 3D Notre Dame Cathedral puzzle upstairs

Now, for BEFORE (this morning -- son doing his schoolwork in the foreground)

What I did (it's not going to really show up in the picture too much, but take my word for it -- it was a 2-hour task counting helping sons with math and grammar in the process).

  • Broke down the boxes we use for firestarters over by the fireplace, in order to consolidate them into a smaller tidier space
  • Collected miscellaneous books that were lying around and put them in a pile to reshelve upstairs
  • Collected various toys, ditto
  • Collected various blankets, ditto
  • Swept carefully around the hearth
  • Polished the newly cleared wooden surfaces
  • Wiped and scrubbed the windowsills and benches.
  • Cleaned and swept under the couch
  • Changed, cleaned and refilled the barometer water.


Conclusion, Continuation

Still to DO, either today or next time around:

  • Take the cardboard and newspapers out to the garage or basement (I am not doing that yet because it is perfectly possible it will still get cold enough to need our wood stove)
  • Move the ugly taped-up light you see at the bottom of the barometer picture
  • Oh, and that SPIDER WEB -- I didn't see it when I was dusting over there.
  • Vacuum the floor
  • Vacuum under the seat cushions (it doesn't get too bad because of the covers I keep over the sofas but still, needs to be done every now and then.
  • Bring up the kids' schoolbooks -- they are in a box on the "hutch". That will be for the next pass through because right now we are still three weeks away from the end of the last term for our year.
  • Straighten basket next to foyer ( a catchall for library books, keys, and whatever else)
Task #9:

The north side of the kitchen ... yes, this endeavour will have to be broken down.


Susan L said...

Wow! I am impressed with what you did, Willa. The room looks so comfortable and relaxing and inviting. Just the added inspiration I need to do what I can in the couple hours before dinner (after a day of running errands in town, which always drains me)!

It looks like you live in a tree house, which is very cool. Swiss Family Robinson! And I love the little byline thingy you have on your header. I'd still it if I could. I've been trying to think of something for mine, and what you have written there is just right. :-)

And you're in the Sierras. So beautiful!


Willa said...

You can steal it if you want.

Yes, it is a bit like a tree house now that you mention it. Even to the fauna taking refuge in it at times.

I made a deal with myself that days of running errands in town were "maintenance days" -- I wouldn't do any intensive stuff unless I felt it was going to refresh me. It is SO draining! I have one of those days coming up tomorrow, in fact.

Willa said...

Oh, and thanks for the comments on the room!

I am reading Kathleen Norris's Quotidian Mysteries and enjoying it very much -- thank you for mentioning it on your blog.

Susan L said...

Huh. Did I really write "still" for "steal"? :-) Well, thank you for offering to let me borrow it (minus the family of nine in the Sierras part). I'm serious when I say I think it's perfect, so we'll see if I want to be that much of a copycat... :-)

Yes, I accepted the reality that yesterday was a "maintenance day", and I did very little after I posted besides the typical cooking, tidying, animal care, etc. (and then reading).

Today, though, is a different story. I hope you'll accomplish what you aim to do today!


SKELLER said...

Oh Willa! Your home truly is beautiful! Your stated goal words (uncluttered, spacious, simple, shining) are words that are soothing to my soul. Now that "official" school is winding down, I think it's time to dedicate some serious time to restoring order to & clearing out clutter from my own home. Thanks for the inspiration. :-)

Willa said...

So glad my efforts inspired you, Skeller, since your photos consistently refresh my spirit. Ditto with the thanks!

Laura A said...

Willa, I'm just now getting around to reading this, as I just now realized you have several blogs! Anyway, just wanted to add my compliments on your lovely, cozy log home--especially after organizing.

Your home reminds me of the house in The Seven Silly Eaters, a children's book that we used to read a lot. I liked that house in that book so much that I once went to the trouble to try to figure its floor plan based on the illustrations, and to sketch it out, just in case I ever had the opportunity to build my own house. I think I'd like living in the Sierra Nevadas, too, but for now I seem to be entrenched in a different place altogether ;-).

Hope the rest of your organizing goes well. It's inspiring!