"In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps."

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Decorating Drama

Ugh, I HATE DECORATING MY HOUSE!!! And because I have to always be PC, I know this is a FIRST WORLD PROBLEM! But UGH. Before I owned a house I thought it would be SO fun, but it really isn’t. At least not for me.

I had intended to blog about the girls tonight, but after spending like 2 hours online looking at throw pillows, I am about ready to claw my eyeballs out. This is not something that I am good at and I am so stressed out about. Yes, throw pillows. And decorating. I don’t know how something so innocuous can make my blood pressure rise so high! I finally gave up and googled “How to Decorate with Throw Pillows”.

When we moved in, Nick wasn’t ready to get rid of our huge, brown (but super comfy) sectional sofa and I didn’t want it in my main living room since I really don’t like dark colors and buying this was a fluke incident for me. I really wanted to make our bonus room into a playroom, but we had some leftover furniture that neither of us was ready to get rid of, and together the couch, a dresser, our old brown desk and a cheap bookcase that I bought as Sam’s made a very nice den for TV watching along with a little study. We just kept the girls’ toys out in the living room figuring that I spend most of my time in the kitchen and they want to be near me anyway.

As soon as we found out that we were having Baby Shaka and Gemma started moving around and getting toys everyone, the toy situation in our home made my stress level go through the roof and I just really wanted to have one room that I could throw them into and shut the door. Although I am still negotiating the brown couch with Nick, I have started the transition to move the TV into our living room, and have begun the process of selling and/or moving all of our furniture out of the den to make it into playroom. Of course it took me about 6 months to get things to where they were before I started to mix things up again and it will take me another 6 months to get done with this because I cannot make up my mind!

Anywhere here we are mid transition, and I can see how much I will enjoy things once I get everything into place. The girls already love their playroom even though they only have about a fourth of the room right now! I thought the toys would migrate to the living room, but they pretty much stay put, other than a few things Gemma wanders in with, which is to be expected at her age, and I can hear them really well from the kitchen since the rooms are close.

Living Room Changes…

My first step in moving the TV was making sure that Nick could watch TV at the same comfort level that he does in the den. So as a surprise early Father’s day gift, I bought him two leather recliners from a local furniture store called Carter’s. I was nervous about buying them as a surprise because I didn’t know if he would like them or if they would fit his frame well. For the fit, I made the store people find me someone about Nick’s height and build and test several of the recliners I liked, and tell me which was the most comfortable. Thankfully Nick LOVES them (still holding onto that brown couch though)! So do the girls. And I love the way they look in the living room. Win/win.

Here he is napping! Excuse the poor quality.



None of the pictures that I have of them in the home really turned out, but this is the store model. I love it!


While shopping for the recliners I had seen a TV console that I loved, but that had already been sold. When I asked about ordering another one for me, the sales lady said that this manufacturer had been sending that same model in a very different color so they had stopped ordering it. I have been searching online and at other stores around midland for a console that I liked, but they were either too expensive or I didn’t like them very much. I almost bought the Layla media console from Ballard Designs, but by the time I made up my mind to spend the money, they weren’t carrying it anymore. I couldn’t get the console from Carter’s out of my mind because not only was it my favorite one that I had seen, it was a also CHEAP and way under budget (score!). I decided to go back and plead for them to order another one to just see if it came in at the right color… and you know what? They had one that was already in their warehouse! Nick and I went back to look at it this afternoon, it was perfect and we snatched it up. It’s perfect, and we also received a discount on top of its low price for paying cash (it pays to follow Dave Ramsey). This is the console pic from the manufacturer, we will pick the actual console up this weekend.


Now we just have to get our new bookcase that I am ordering. I sent the person who is making it, the designs I like, the size that I want and the finish that I want. I definitely want a lighter wood finish since I have a lot of painted furniture and a lot of white. I am waiting on two quotes. These are the two designs that I am waiting on quotes for… she says she usually comes in about a third of the price of the companies that she copies!

st jamesjosephine bookcase

The bookcase should take at least a couple of months, and then all that remains is to buy a few throw pillows and maybe some wall art and my living room to main living-and-TV-viewing room transformation should be complete. I ordered a few throw pillows when we moved here last year, and I have sat down MANY times to buy some more or looked for them in store and I just couldn’t make up my mind. And so tonight I decided, I WILL get this done. I WILL! But here I am hours later with nothing to show for it.

This is what I know. I have a lot of blue. I need to add some yellows and some pinks. I put the two burlap pillows on the recliners, and birdy pillow will be in the middle on the white couch with the new ones on either side. They need be comfy too… because it always comes back to the brown couch and those pillows are the comfiest pillows ever!

Nature Study Pillow_thumb[2]

I think I like these two… but I just don’t know! Nick thinks (when pressed) I need to add some darker brown to tie in the recliners… and yes, he’s totally cool with me adding as much pink as I want. Because he’s awesome like that. Even though he keeps steering me to dark brown decorating colors and won’t let me get rid of the brown couch. Also, I made him give me his opinion – he just had me spend an hour going over something for his project at work because he values my opinion as a former project engineering professional, and so I made him return the favor when I got very stressed out over these dumb pillows, otherwise he could not care less!


Playroom Changes

There isn’t much to buy or do with this change. We sold our desk (I brought that into the marriage) and we won’t have one anymore. It was just a place to collect clutter for us and we never used it for its purpose. We moved the bookcase into the guest bedroom along with all of our paperbacks. We moved the bookcase from the living room and put the kids books in there, and it is FULL! And now I have piles of hardbacks just waiting for a home. The TV is on a dresser (Nick brought that into the marriage) that I would like to sell or give to family and of course our HUGE couch that I would like to sell.

photo 1 (12)photo 2 (10)

Nick’s favorite spot in the house Smile, and poor Frodo who never makes the blog anymore! See how BIG that couch is? Gemma has been climbing on it, running the length of it and of course… falling off. Yet another reason I want it to go. She can’t be trusted in the room by herself without hurting herself. MUST. GET. STAKEHOLDER. BUYIN. AND. SELL. STUPID. COUCH.

photo 3 (9)photo 4 (5)

As soon as I get the TV moved into the living room (I have to get AT&T out to move it since there’s no phone jack in the living room), the dresser and couch are gone. I am moving the white chair and ottoman in here because that’s all the adult seating we really need and I just need to buy some toy storage from IKEA. Then I am DONE! Anyway… I have a plan, I just need to execute it! But I’m working it and I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel… even though it will probably take me at least 6 months to be really done.

Phew, now I feel better, but still… being a homemaker is so much harder than being a project engineer! I don’t care what anyone says. It is.


  1. I like your ideas a lot. I find it stressful too. I blame all of the pinterest boards and design shows that make us all feel a lot of pressure to make it awesome. Not that it is their fault, it is just that we all get exposed to great interior design all the time. I almost wish I didn't know anything and just bought stuff I liked. I think you have cool ideas and it is coming together.

    I understand you about big, ugly couches. We got a hand me down couch that is too comfortable and expensive to replace. Ours isn't a safety hazard so I have resigned myself to it. As a compromise, I think we are going to get it professionally cleaned.

    I find pillows especially hard! Too many choices and I wish I could bring my living room with me to the store. I can't tell what will look good!

  2. I wish I knew what I liked half the time :). I had a good friend in LA who was an interior designer who was great for advice... to bad I don't know anyone like that here.

    This would be a lot less stressful on someone else's dime too!


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