Friday, June 15, 2007

Home Sweet Home

So! Here I am, all shacked up. Today was the Wait Around For the Phucking Phone Company Day. The guy was supposed to be here to install my phone lines and DSL sometime between 8 am and 5 pm, but of course it was 5:40 when I finally got hooked up. But I guess I'm lucky he came at all: we had a MAJOR deluge this afternoon that washed my rent-a-husband clean over to the next parish. So where my walkway is supposed to go is now a deep pit of water and mud. The phone guy could have taken one look and driven off into the sunset too.

Anyway, he didn't and now I have a phone, and I have the internets back! Of course the very first thing y'all have to do is see the pictures of my new house.

Let me tell you, it was quite a challenge trying to fit my stuff in here. First thing I had to do was get rid of 90% of it. Can you imagine how hard and yet how utterly liberating that is, getting rids of 90% of your stuff? Rummaging through your clothes, your shoes, your books, your CDs, your dishes, your furniture, your miscellaneous detritus, and flinging nine out of ten items over your shoulder? Gah. But I did it.

Next I had to figure out how to arrange the 10% of stuff I had left in a way that didn't feel too cluttered and cramped. Since there are zero closets or cupboards in my shack, I had to figure out ways to stash and store not only day to day stuff, but also unsightly occasional stuff like suitcases, stepladders, garden tools, the vacuum cleaner.

Anyway, yadda yadda, let's just cut to the chase. Bring on the visuals! Here you have it, my cozy new casa. Let's start with the tiny compact living room.

This is looking into the living room from the bedroom. The two rooms are adjoined by French doors that I decided to keep permanently open, to make it almost feel like one big room. This gives each room more light and a nice open feel.

Small sofa with dogs. The coffee table is a clever repository for blankets and quilts.

This corner of the living room is my office. Where I am sitting right now! The drawers of the secretary are full of stuff. Um. Whoa, that was a great sentence.

Ok, moving along. There wasn't enough room for all the chairs, so the green one volunteered to go out on the front porch, an excellent spot for early morning train watching.

Now let's venture into the bedroom, where my bed takes up over half the space. There is an entire tool shed stashed beneath it.

The weed eater, the leaf blower, two suitcases and a pet carrier are hidden beneath the tv. That white curtain on the right is a closet that I built from a kit I bought at Target. It's sort of a cross between Tinker Toys and an erector set, with instructions that have been translated from Urdu into Japanese into Swahili into Norwegian and then finally into something vaguely resembling English. But look, so far it hasn't collapsed under the weight of my hanging jacket and skirt collection. I did something right.

You've already seen the bathroom, but since the last photos my stalwart young frat boys have managed to cram an amazing assortment of furniture in there.

It's sort of like the 800 clowns stuffed into a Volkswagen at the circus. Furniture everywhere!

And finally, what you've all been waiting for...

Ta-da! The kitchen. Gee, can you guess who lives here?

The china hutch earns its keep.

I had my rent-a-husband take the door off between the kitchen and the bedroom, since there's only one air condition unit and the bed would have to block the door closed. This way, the cool air can circulate. Note the classy Three Stooges refrigerator magnets, the hub around which my entire Anti-Pottery Barn decor theme revolves.

The other end of the long narrow kitchen, which I guess we could technically call "the dining room." I need a longer tablecloth so I can hide more items beneath that table.

Decorating on a shoestring: More fun with contact paper! This must be what people did before drawers and cupboards were invented.

Ok, there you have it, all four rooms plus the porch. Sorry if that was a little too much shack overload. But you know, I'm liking it. It's going to be very livable. I've been feeling quite happy here. Now the next step is to complete the sale of the other house. If all goes well, the closing is set for 10:00 Monday morning. Fingers crossed!

And damn, hello, it's nice to be back.


Blogger Lisa said...

Wow! Cozy, stylish, color-FULL, cheery, coordinated AND neat. Welcome home.

8:05 PM  
Blogger divrchk said...

Wow. Congratulations on getting settled so quickly! It looks fantastic. I'm so glad that you are happy there.

8:18 PM  
Blogger Moira said...

Love it ! Can I hire you to decorate my place ?

9:05 PM  
Blogger Tarr said...

Bless your heart.

9:42 PM  
Blogger Trasi said...

Liz, the place looks FABulous. It's cozy, it's full (but in a good way), and it's very...what is the word I'm looking for here... junkwhimsical? thriftastic? You have a style all your own. I love it.
Thank you for sharing. You've been a BUSY woman, arranging and unpacking and getting rid of things and stuff. I hope they all found good homes, those things of yours.
And it's terrific to HAVE you back!

11:05 PM  
Blogger Alto2 said...

When are you going to appear on HGTV's "Small Spaces"? You've done a marvelous job with the cottage. Tell me, is there any black-and-white contact paper left in Rural Deep Inferno? Seems like you've cornered the market on that stuff. BTW, did you sell the house?

11:51 PM  
Blogger Dr. Lisa said...

I'm so impressed that you got all that done in 2 days. YOu continue to be an inspiration

12:12 AM  
Blogger debinca said...

Ya Know Liz, I love what you've done with the place! < smile> The bathroom is my favorite!!!

Cant wait to see superman in the place, but he'll need a bigger bed!

great job, I am impressed. Debinca

12:37 AM  
Blogger George said...

It all looks wonderful!

I love the green chair on the porch.

3:34 AM  
Blogger quixoticmantis said...

YES. I love it!

6:04 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

You know, I was skeptical when you first posted photos of your little palace a few weeks ago, but you've proven you really CAN make a home from a teeny-tiny space. I love it! It looks like a place I could live in. Except for the fact that I'm completely boring and would never have dared to use all the colors that you've used with such aplomb! Way cool.


9:49 AM  
Blogger Patrizia said...

I continue to be in absolute awe of you, Elizabeth. The new cottage looks absolutely fabulous.

1:06 PM  
Blogger Lt. Obtusely Rev. B. Dagger Lee said...

I've got a request: more pictures of your new boyfriend. You know, naked on your bed, lolling on the couch, sitting in the green chair on the porch.

I've never had boyfriend envy before, ever, being a big old b. dagger. But I admit now on this date, here in this comment box, to boyfriend envy.


1:09 PM  
Blogger Lisa said...

You are simply astounding. What you have accomplished in the last week puts to shame the whole concept of 'post-chemo fatigue'.
I am in awe.

You've turned a tiny shack into a home! Now, bring on the Big Guy! He'll be able to empty those open kitchen cupboards in a matter of minutes. ;)

7:36 PM  
Blogger Beverly said...

It's such a cute little place, very cozy.

I like cozy!

10:47 PM  
Blogger El said...

OMG, you are one of THOSE people: she who cannot rest until every box (even a reduced boxload of 1 out of 10) is unpacked! My husband is like you. And my mother.

What charm you have wrought. Well done.

9:03 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

The place is adorable! You've settled in so fast :). All appendages crossed for the closing on Monday.

9:49 AM  
Blogger B Northcut said...


You gotta lotta energy.

What a beautiful home! Who cares if it's small?

10:46 AM  
Blogger Me said...

I can only imagine how liberating it must feel to rid yourself of so much "stuff". No matter what size place you live in I think that getting rid of the excess clutter in your life opens your mind and your heart and allows you to focus on the significant things in life. You've inspired me to start cleaning out the "crap" not only in the home but also in life. I thank you for that.

11:31 AM  
Blogger Me said...

just a thought...have you considered looking into a small outdoor storage shed to store your garden tools and garage type equipment? There are some adorable ones out there like this one from Home Depot...
Or I'm sure you could probably just build your own! You can decorate it with flowers and make it look like a guest house! Even if you don't have a lot of yard space they have some great outdoor closet type storage units for yard and garden tools which are pretty inexpensive.

1:17 PM  
Blogger Sarah said...

It's cozy and neat and utterly charming, and completely mind-blowing that you finished this so quickly. Congratulations, and welcome home!

2:41 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It looks spectacular. I can't believe you did all that so quickly. Maybe that's another thing people can pay you to do, help them jettison crap and still keep their essential tokens of joy.

Great job! I hope you will all be very comfortable there as long as you desire.

6:22 PM  
Blogger John said...

The place looks absolutely fantastic! It is very warm, inviting, and cozy; everything a home should be. You have a natural knack for decorating. I think it should be featured on HGTV or in Better Homes and Gardens in a show or an article about comfortable living in small spaces. Kudos to you and your new home! I hope it's the beginning of great and happy times for you!

7:26 PM  
Blogger Molly said...

Congratulations. You've moved from the coolest house ever to the coolest shack ever. You've got some style, woman!

10:26 PM  
Blogger momo said...

What John said. Seriously, you should go pro. Your new place looks charming, inviting, comfortable and fun. And a smaller place means less cleaning ;)

1:14 AM  
Blogger Tuesday said...

Oooohhhh, really lovely and a completely new, fresh start. Big is not always beautiful -- this is fantastic.

7:04 AM  
Blogger anne said...

I love it - LOVE it! There is a lot of beauty and freedom in releasing your "things." I adore the color-soaked look of your new abode - totally anti-Pottery Barn. Yet another reason I love you!

Congratulations. It's really lovely, and I can easily imagine living in such a lively, inviting space.

1:12 PM  
Blogger anne said...

p.s. I am going through your blog and printing out a sheaf of entries for my sister-in-law. She was just diagnosed with stage three c/grade 3 invasive ductal carcinoma. She gets her port this week. I only wish she had internet access - I want her to know you.

I just wanted you to know that your strength and honesty and your way with words will be there for someone who is very scared right now. Thank you, many times over.

1:17 PM  
Blogger RubyShooZ said...

Welcome Home.

I've been following your blog and thanking you for your beautiful smiles - they've brought smiles to my own face as well.

Peace, love and understanding~

12:59 AM  
Blogger Katherine said...

Way to go!!!!'ve been BUSY... (pun intended). We send lots of love your way!

8:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The shack isn't a shack anymore, methinks. It looks like a real home to me. Fantastic!

I have a request, though: a blog entry on what constitutes an anti-Pottery Barn decorating style. I think I share this style, but would love some pointers. ;)

11:35 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

The kitchen is SO Alice In Wonderland.
I get tired just looking at it.
But it's also another prod to start over somewhere.

1:04 PM  
Blogger Sock Girl said...

It looks fabulous! So cheery and colourful!

3:30 PM  
Blogger Lark said...

Wow gorgeous new place! As others have said, you could get people to pay you to do this for them. There are many many of us who can't get a place looking good no matter what and need help and you kick ass at this!

11:30 PM  
Blogger slfisher said...

Congratulations, and while I'm sad you had to sell your other house, I'm glad it's closing.

3:16 PM  
Blogger Professor Zero said...

*Very* nice.

1:12 AM  
Blogger Professor Zero said...

P.S. were those black and white tiles already on the bathroom floor? I want them for my kitchen and believe it or not, they are now hard to find.

1:14 AM  
Blogger belledame222 said...

Looks fantastic!

9:55 PM  

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