Christmas Eve and now

This last week I was not feeling well.  It wasn’t like I was at deaths door or anything so dramatic, but I WAS snot with a bit of a cough and lack of energy on top.  So it was pretty much a week of non activity for no good reason.  It could have had more activity, but it just didn’t.  Though I am excited to say Christmas was put away, a Phoenix trip was booked {2 sessions still available}, a list of home improvements was created, a little grocery shopping, my 365 project images were organized and edited, the kids were cared for {even if most days were jammy days} and the most exciting thing, for me, was to Freecycle and give a bunch of stuff away!

I’ve talked about Freecycle before and my love for it.  This week the clear out for what will become ‘our’ home began.  Some burgundy painted wood frames purchased 10+ years ago that are still mostly great went to a friend with a decorating palate to match.  Along with those went a couple chenille throw blankets, some throw pillows in various colors and fabrics and a few other odds and ends.  Hopefully, she loves them, but she said she will pass on whatever she doesn’t want.  On the local Yahoo Groups Wake Freecycle we gave away a large kitchen bag of my size 10 shoes, a king bed set in a tan suede fabric, a ton of towels, a crochet throw {pretty but I used rough yarn}, Sketchers work shoes in a hard to find mens 13, and mens work pants.   A few weeks ago, Guy also got rid of all the shirts, sweaters and hoodies he had purchased that did not fit again after the first wash & dry made them too short which filled two kitchen garbage bags.

When Guy and I were talking a couple weeks ago, the topic came up of how we tend to only improve our homes to sell and just live in them without really making them ours.  The last house we had was the most personalized of the four with paint and a few pieces of furniture, but we worked with any existing decorative pieces we had picked up over the years.  The docorative items were mostly from people in our families that were getting rid of stuff or what we received as wedding gifts.  It is time to start making our mark on our home here, and any future home, with items that make us feel most at home and reflect our personality.   One big thing that has changed over the years is the use of candles.  We got a lot of decorative candle pieces over the years, but we lost interest in burning candles at least 3 years ago.  It is time for all of them to go!  A couple of the holders will survive the cute which will be converted into holding something else.

Saturday we went to Home Depot to check out some prices on our project wish list items.  We have great kitchen cabinets and Guy put in a nice bamboo floor in there.  What we don’t have is a great counter top.  There is a good deal going on for granite at Home Depot right now.  They also have a beautiful selection of the little glass tiles to use as a backsplash.  We checked out carpet choices that have a fuller but not shag look to them using variegated colors.  There are so many choices.  With the carpet taken out Guy should also be able to tackle some of the creaky noise spots we still have left before the new carpet is laid.  When we were house hunting all of the houses got nicknames to help us remember them by.  This one was a tie between the mass of creaky floors and being called the Playboy house as the old owner had a basket of them in the bathroom.

My closet has become about 1/2 photography props/supplies and 1/2 Shannon’s wardrobe.  As part of my need for a wardrobe clean up I started using the same closet and drawer system I do with the kids stuff.  Everything washed or new is hung the farthest away or put in the drawer on the right.  When I get dressed I use all of the items closest to me or on the left side of the drawer first {not including out of season stuff even farther back}.  If an item of clothing gets skipped a lot then it goes into the giveaway pile at the bottom of that closet.  Once a good pile is created the items are given away.  It is a great system that feels good for our family.  About 1/2 of my personal stuff in the closet is now gone since I started using this system back in July.  There are obviously a few things, mostly shirts & dresses} that haven’t been tested yet since I am pregnant.

There is still so much to go through and get rid of!  I can’t wait to get to it in the next few weeks as we prepare to make slow decorative changes, some big structural changes {counter top/carpet} and continue to prepare for baby boy White arriving sometime in April.

Here are a few images from our Christmas Eve morning gift opening when Santa visited us early knowing we were going on a trip!

sonja - January 11, 2011 - 9:49 pm

LOVE the new pictures! The toaster Madison got is cool and the tea set is one thing every little girl should own. =) I also am intrigued by your clothes organizing system. I might try something similar. I always have things to giveaway but don’t get through them often enough. A system like yours would totally help. You asked if we use the space saver chairs — YES! They are so wonderful. I had put them away because of Christmas (we had them strapped to the dining chairs and we needed all the chairs for hosting Christmas dinner and my family for a week after). So I hurt my leg (nerve?) because I was sitting on the floor feeding them in a bouncy chair. Needless to say, as soon as that happened I got my lazy self to replace the chairs. The pain went away two days later thank goodness. Off to check out your other photos!