Finally taking some time to give my house a little attention. I have basically ignored any major cleaning or updating for many months, which is not typical for me. More than almost anything else, I love to putz around my house, tidying, changing things up, making things pretty and personal. But lately, that has not been happening, so I very purposefully made the time to give it a little attention. My dining room has been in transition for months, with chairs lined up everywhere. I couldn’t even focus on what I wanted to keep and what needed to go. So I took a few hours last week to spring clean and spruce it up.
I’m not sure if the show, “Clean Sweep” is still on TLC? But I have always liked the concept. So I decided to take that approach to my dining room. I needed a fresh start, but I think I was ignoring it because I don’t have the furniture that I want right now, and rather than make it the best it can be as is, I was choosing to just wait and live with it a mess. I do this quite often in my home…if it can’t be perfectly the way I want it, I just ignore it. But since life isn’t perfect and we can’t always buy what we want, or even find the perfect pieces, why not make it the best it can be until the timing of everything comes together? I decided to give it a go. Here’s what the room looked like when I started:
Nothing horrible, just not pulled together. I know what I want and need in a dining room table and sideboard, but I haven’t found them yet. The table is going to be difficult to find, so I might as well settle with this for now.
Dining room spring clean and restyle process *b* list:
- Clear the room. I think clearing the room out, allows me to see the space more clearly and frees me to rethink it a little.
- Wash windows, screens, chandelier, woodwork & floors. Just getting everything out of the way and cleaning felt awesome. I use Armorall Auto Glass Cleaner and paper towels on my windows, and a drop of dishwashing liquid and a spritz of the glass cleaner on my woodwork, wood floors and to wipe down the chandilier. I don’t get overly agressive when I clean the chandilier, because it is really old and quite fragile. I can live with it being less than perfectly clean. I use a little bleach water on the screens and allow them to drip dry outside.
- Clear the knick knacks and wipe them all down. I took everything off the shelves and out of the cupboard and got rid of a box of things that I never use. I wiped every little thing off and restyled everything in the cupboard. A little update like this, made me feel so much lighter.
I have so many dishes and serving pieces that were my Gram’s and I do love them and use them.
- Take a break. I have mentioned “Use what you have Decorating” by Lauri Ward countless times and I still refer to her basic principles. It’s an older book, but timeless in concept. As I was linking her book, I noticed that she has a blog. Awesome! I will be checking it out. Here’s the link to her blog: redecorate. I didn’t immediately put things back after cleaning. I left the room and did a little photo editing. After an hour or so, I went back and sat on one end of the room and rethought what I was putting back. It took a while.
- Put the furniture back and don’t be afraid to try something different. Since I had nothing new (furniture) to put back, I wanted to use what I had a little differently. After putting the furniture in, I took another break.
- Shop your house. I knew I had things in the basement that I wanted to use to replace a few things I was tired of, so I went downstairs and looked around, then I checked the front porch and deck and actually found things in all three spots. By the way, my front porch was a disaster until yesterday. We always take things to the storage bay seasonally and when Tom brought the spring things back recently, I just hadn’t gotten around to arranging them. Plus, I had gone to an estate sale and brought home a wheelbarrow and another wagon, so it was really bad. Tom said it reminded him of Bernheisels (our local salvage yard, which I love btw).
I did have a little motivation to get the front porch all spruced up yesterday…more on that later this week.
- Rethink. Before I put a single thing back in the room, I asked myself if I still loved it and if it fit. I am tending toward a more simplistic style in every area of my life and I want my home to reflect that.
- Stylize. I love fresh flowers and my very favorite flowers are peonies. I bought a peony plant two years ago and last year it died. So I did what I know to do, ask if anyone on facebook has an abundance that they might be willing to barter for or sell. My friend Tracey Cate kindly replied and invited me to help myself! The power of FB and great friends!So prettyTracey texted me last night and said that her white peonies were blooming and that I was welcome to another bouquet! I am a lucky girl!
I am happy with the way the room turned out. Nothing dramatic, but in real life, it really feels so much fresher and pulled together.
I found a rug that I had originally purchased for my entryway, but it ended up being a little too big for the space…I think it works in the dining room for now? The only thing that I had intended to do, but haven’t yet, is to redo the wall hangings. I will need to give that some thought. I have an idea for a really large bold print, but I need to make sure it’s the right one.
I got so into the process while I was working in the dining room, that I continued with the living room. I haven’t photographed it yet, but I will try to get to it today and share soon. I’m happy with the way it looks for now too. Nothing new, just restyled and CLEAN! I also worked on the front porch yesterday and it looks fresh too! I hope to continue throughout the house, as I make it a priority! Nothing gets done if it’s not made a priority…we’re all busy, but we can make choices. I choose to run, I choose to work hard, I choose to make time for people, I choose to make time to read my Bible and pray, I choose to do lots of things that are important. We can’t do everything, but we can find balance.
I love this verse that I read this morning:
“A relaxed attitude lengthens life; jealousy rots it away.” Proverbs 14:30
Have a great day and God bless!