The (almost) final reveal of the new Reading-Being Room is here.
View of the room before much changed except that I moved a big old chest of drawers that was in front of the windows into the breakfast room and put in its place an antique table which, you will see, has now exited this new space and is in the living room now. So this was what we began with – the old dining room:
Along the way things got moved, areas got cleaned out (under the white bookshelves/cabinets), dogs helped where they were able (mainly moral support), and this was where we were:
Then one day I had a thought – Paul was cleaning out an area in the basement. We had a lot of stuff that his parents gave us when they were moved from independent living to a nursing facility, and among those items were some off-white extremely soft bed blankets – and there were two of them, twin sizes, which I immediately pictured as curtains. And curtains they became.
Earlier, I had tried covering up the fireplace wall with a pair of red corduroy curtains held up by two tension rods, but that was way too dark and depressing for us, so I took those down and this is what we had then, after I temporarily put up a beige sheet to cover that fireplace:
Wall decor was rearranged:
Then I had an idea – I moved the buffet, which was now emptied of all its contents (which all went into the cabinets under the bookshelves) and moved it into the living room where it replaced our old and less-loved TV credenza:
Then I moved those dark small bookcases that used to be under the living room windows out into the new Reading Room, making this room seem a lot less cluttered. I also cleaned out the large bookcase and moved tons of DVDs into another area:
Into the Reading Room went those little bookcases:
We snipped some forsythia stems and they have started blooming inside, giving us the appearance that spring is on its way:
I also revealed the fireplace once again and will tend to that area at a later time.
Then the big day arrived. March the 11th, the day the two new IKEA chairs that I’d ordered were to be delivered. And didn’t I worry and fret over those two chairs? Oh yes. The web site said “Assembly required” and the thought of Paul and me possibly breaking up over the job of assembling two chairs, never mind “recliner” chairs, was daunting. I lost a lot of sleep over this one… believe me. But in the end, all that worry was for naught… they came all assembled except for the feet!
The new chairs, with feet, but still not in their spots yet:
They push back easily into recliners – and yes, they are comfy! The best part – I can sit in this chair for long periods without excruciating pain in my back/legs etc. This makes it all worth it!
And with the help of our ever-present assistants, the chairs got moved into their new spots against the inside wall, so we can sit there and enjoy the view out the front in peace and quiet:
And this is it, my new Reading-Being Room – a place to read and a place to just “be” for us. It’s taking a bit of time to get used to the idea of a room to just “be” – without tv going or dogs running around, or computers buzzing away… but I am very happy with how this room turned out. I like the rug that’s in there for now so will keep it for now.
My biggest regret is that my friend Emily (Mz. Em) isn’t here to see how it all came together because I had shared ideas with her all along and she was anxious to see the final result. (I hope, Em, if you are watching from above, you will come sit on my shoulder when I’m reading in my new room and keep me company sometimes… I’ll listen for you…)
During all this rearranging of furniture and cleaning out of clutter, the living room got a minor update, as well. Here’s a much improved view of the living room now that there isn’t so much going on:
And that chapter is closing. Just a few more small things to do in there. But now we’ve got the cleaning-out-bug and Paul has been at work in the basement getting rid of so much old stuff, the trash men are dizzy with it all! I am being ruthless, too, in getting rid of things, something Paul has been hoping for, for many years now. As a very dear and wise friend said to me recently, “Less is more, less is more, less is more, less is more!”
Final before & after:
Left=Before – Right=After
Bex & Co.
It’s in every one of us to be wise;
Find your heart, open up both your eyes.
We can all know every thing without ever knowing why.
It’s in every one of us, by and bye.
~ John Denver & The Muppets ~
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