How Are You Investing in Yourself In Your Successful Post WLS ( and Now Covid-Restricted )...
I finally decided to invest the time money and effort to finally make my Florida apartment the beautiful and maximally functional cocoon and launching pad for myself I need and deserve.
This means - hiring a painter to repaint 2 coats everywhere with brighter , whiter more expensive paint ( I like Behrs ultra white based slightly tinted colors from Home Depot - like a lot of high end decorators I think it gives better results for 1/3 the money than Benjamin Moore or other high end paints )
Cleaning and ORGANIZING including the closets !!! This is proving to be a HUGE job ... but will be well and forever worth it .
Buying closet organizers to corral attractively and store far more efficiently all the not-everyday needed stuff- linens and towels, summer slipcovers and pillows and outdoor and indoor rugs, spare folding chairs, chair covers, dining dishes and folding tables for the dinner parties that will probably never happen now grrr , receipts and old mail and old tax records and legal issues and paperwork for projects past and present... also infrequently worn shoes , out of season clothes and winter coats for up north and luggage, gardening and workout equipment ( boy we accumulate a lot don't we - and I'm just ONE person !)
Ordering rugs and desks and large TVs for entertainment and furniture to complete these rooms
Committing to tidying every morning to KEEP these rooms looking and feeling welcoming . Stopping feeling sorry for myself for Covid risk preventing me from getting domestic help and making the BEST of it
Committing to leaving significant time and energy FOR MYSELF to keep my home nice , to recharge and to be able to relax ... without feeling guilty.
Committing to finding/repairing/upgrading the exercise equipment I need and actually will use including exploring creative ways to house it / set up a friendly and welcoming exercise area .
I'm also thinking perhaps I could upgrade /renovate my condo's basement gym which literally NOBODY currently uses but which could be a good space provided ventilation, mirrors , a TV, sound system and good equipment - perhaps even make it a semi-private gym for me which would mean I wouldn't need to keep everything in my condo !
I drive to swim every other day .... why couldn't I dress, take an elevator and walk across a courtyard?
Committing to paying the money and making the effort to clean out my car regularly ( another environment I spend a lot of time in ) and either take the time to detail it or devote the money to having it commercially washed vacuumed and detailed FOR MYSELF
Having the broken things ( like my kitchen sink and garbage disposal ) finally fixed rather than procrastinating and suffering for MONTHS ?
Working more efficiently on the things I shy from and feel guilty about - by planning an END time and a REWARD for daily work on the issue or project.
Committing to following up on career opportunities and self care and artistic projects that I've long planned and stoopidly put everything else in front of .
I have a painter coming this month and still need to buy paint, so I will definitely check out the Home Depot. I looked at some at Sherwin Williams and it is $100 a gallon. That seems really high to me.
I had some new light fixtures hung yesterday which brightened up some areas. I bought LED to replace the older fixtures. I am still weeding out closets and have not bought much yet to reorganize things. I am reading the Home Edit book for ideas before I hit the Container Store.
I did go through a lot of paper and set up a complete new filing system with colored folders to make it prettier. I also had a company come in and clean all of the windows in the house last months. They wore masks and worked quickly. Clean windows are wonderful.
i don't have help coming in, but am very happy with my robot vacuum cleaner and my robot floor cleaner. It is so nice to wake up to freshly vacuumed floors that happened while i slept.
Real life begins where your comfort zone ends
I ended up moving back to my 200+ year old cottage in Donegal to work remotely shortly after the pandemic started. As a result, I've been quite busy fixing up the place. Some of the projects end up being way more involved than you would think. For example, the walls are made of cinder blocks, which were made locally, and they're nearly solid rock. So to put up shelves requires a hammer drill, upper body strength, and a lot of patience.
I love my cottage, but it is small, so I have been focused on making the best use of space that I can. That has included things like putting up more shelves, replacing furniture with slimmer items, replacing my cannister vacuum with one of the newer stick ones that hangs on the wall, and ruthlessly giving away or throwing out anything that doesn't suit my lifestyle. Painting will be on the cards shortly.
Can you please take pics and post them ( of the gorgeous Ireland landscape around you too ) .
I've yet to visit Ireland but working ( and living with) with so much history and in such a gorgeous place sounds fascinating .
Here in America 200 year old houses are REVERED... I grew up in the first capital of the United States and went to pre-prep private school with friends whose homes were decorated like museums ... their families were so proud of their walk-in fireplace you could cook in and seven foot ceilings lol... they even used milk-based paint ( super dark) to keep it "authentic"
Of course I lived on the wrong side of the tracks where people Actually Dared Put Up COLORED !! Christmas lights ... ( the most scandalous one was a lit up Santa sleigh and reindeer poised on a roof like a big finger in the very face of the all-white , so sober old fashioned old moneyed center of town )
Ahhh...small town living !
I will take some photos, sure! As soon as the weather is decent. I'm in what's called a "gaeltacht" because people speak Irish as well as Engli****'s a lovely area. Artists love Donegal because the light here is special; it has a bluish-gold quality.
You mentioned milk-based paint. While we use regular paint for houses, we use actual whitewash, builder's lime + water + sometimes milk, to paint byres, sheds, and other outbuildings.
When I find one of these project physically, I tend to assume that it's because I'm 60 years old and not used to physical labour. But then I'll find out otherwise. I'll get a big strong friend to help me move something that I struggled with (I'm in a "bubble" with his household, so I'm compliant with our lockdown), and when his eyes start bulging out I'll realise the damn thing was actually *heavy*. Or when I told him about how I was struggling to drill holes in the wall for the shelving, he said "ah, don't you know, those blocks are famous for being solid rock in places!" So even at 60, I'm still a pretty tough cookie.
That said, there are a lot of things that I'd like to get a professional in to do so I can spend my time on other things. But covid makes it difficult, so either I do it myself or wait until things settle down.
The expensive ingredient in paint is the WHITE .
As an artist I know ALL about pigments ...and Aboff's , Sherwin Williams none of them have Remotely as pure bright white a base white as does 1/3 the price Home Depot.
Thats the reason paint companies are always trying to show consumers medium and deep base based paint colors as attractive ( sure they DO look good under 10,000 watt TV lights but NOT in real life ) is because they are exponentially cheaper to make and sell for just as much as the bright white based colors.
And they know that statistically you will NOT be happy and will repaint much more quickly than if you'd used a room-brightening reflective light color.
Good luck with your choice !
I chose UNWIND ( HD) for the bedroom which is a very light more celery than mint hint of green with ultra pure white ( not ceiling white its cheaper because its less reflective !) for the ceiling and trim.
The great room color is a super light slightly bluish gray with again ultra pure white ceiling and trim. The current gray w white trim and ceiling also looks great with my white cabinets and white quartz kitchen island countertop but I look forward to a lot more brightness .
I used to have them cut the pigments to half of the very lightest because the color shows so much more when its reflecting repeatedly off all four walls but I'm not sure I'll do that this time.
In my Long Island house I mixed the most important rooms' colors with artist pigments ( copper green and nickel yellow ) which resulted in AMAZINGLY gorgeous surfaces but I don't have access to those here unfortunately.
I haven't decided on the office color yet - it gets a little late afternoon sun from double west facing patio doors . The two 10x 9 rugs are handmade wool silvery blue from IKEA and cover most of the light gray wood looking tile floor.
Probably continuing the color from the great room would work well as it is an overflow room for a large dinner party with double pocket doors that disappear in between - or ultra pure plain white to brighten it even more . A super light lilac would work well too with the setting sun - I kind of like that flow - green to bluish gray to lilac ... hmmm
I was thinking to use an industrial/vintage style filing cabinets, rolling stock and the blue Billy bookcase with doors in a darkish marine blue rather than white and blond birch wood ( my second choice) .
The couch and ottoman will be a milk white canvas slipcovered pull out Ektorp from IKEA - so very basic and cheap but comfortable and very pretty. ( and replacement slipcovers are super cheap and forever available )
My second set of carpets for the office room for summer ( which is weird cuz they're DARKER ) are three Ikea brown spotted cowhides dyed with bright navy/marine blue and some silver and some white dots .. sounds kind of weird but they're beautiful ( and leave some of the tile floor exposed to cool bare feet )
The plastic straw handwoven mat on the balcony for summer is bright turquoise with brown ( I can also use multi blue stripe w brown and white if I get tired of it ) . Winter porch mat is dark woven cobalt blue and white . ( plants are purple and fuchsia bougainvilleas that tower overhead and constantly bloom in hand thrown turquoise Thai pots . )
To transform the great room for summer when I have time ( before spring)I plan to sew a turquoise/ white cotton canvas banana leaf print slipcover with contrasting trim ( maybe bright pink ) for the extra large corner sectional and to switch the rugs from the winter light silk orientals to bright colored white based simple printed ( like trellis print) cottons.
I bought a blue and pink Lily Pulitzer print to slipcover my remaining armchair ( with the same contrasting bright pink welting) so it will be very " Palm Beach " lol :)
I can put the summer rugs right over the winter ones saving closet space ... then switch them up in the fall.
The mats on the wraparound porch which are now orientals turquoise to ultra blue to lilac to dark pink n orange ... will be turquoise/ultra blue and white based prints.
The garden on that ( very large - 12 feet x 58 feet ) wraparound porch is tropical themed -mostly green and purple leafed with no white whatsoever and fountains and several small pools with small oriental carp.( great entertainment for cats as is the large sal****er aquarium by the dining table ). Lots of blooming hibiscus trees, New Guinea impatiens and orchids .
Winter furniture ( now) is rainbow colored stackable Adirondack chairs - summer will be turquoise lounge and rocking chairs and Lily Pulitzer print tasseled outdoor fabric cushions.
Theres something really fun about switching up your decor to the seasons .. its not boring ! And everything gets a good cleaning too before it gets put away...