Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Painting An Empty Wall

  Last Saturday I moved in with my sister, the move went well. Thanks to my best friend the move went fast and with his help I was able to decorate my room immediately which made for a quick transition. This made for a nice beginning to my first week at school. I am settling in, however, I can tell that my mind still hasn't quite caught up yet. I feel happy and at home, but my mind still has to come to the conclusion of I'm here to stay.

  I love being with my sister, I've come to remember how great of a team we make, she is the hard thinker and I am the pack mule. :-P (Just kidding) I am serious though, about us being a great team, we think differently in a lot of areas, but it is our differences that make us vanquishers of every obstacle that comes our way. For example, the trash situation, my sister forgot the last time she took out the trash was about two weeks ago....and we were hauling out what we could tonight and trying to fit as many of the twenty bags or so we had stocked up in the two garbage pales we had....we still have ten bags sitting in the garage for next week.    
   The best part however, was when she said, "I got to feed the worms" and went out the garage door, I got that miffed look on my face and probably a giant question mark over my head....worms? Well my sister, with all her strength, brought in another trash can into our garage...I got excited because I was picturing the last ten bags being squished in there, I had visions of my sister hoisting me into the trash can to push down the first wave of bags to make room for the second wave.  Then I paused with a curious mind and peered into the can wondering why it took my sister so much effort to bring an empty trash can into the garage. Much to my surprise I found that the can wasn't in fact empty at all,  it was full of dirt beans. I was very confused....I know my sister has strange ideas some times, but dirt? I knew there had to be an explanation, then I recalled, "I got to feed the worms." "Hey, uh...sis, do we really have pet worms?" She gives me a look of really? Don't you know that everybody has a trash can full of  pet worms, "Yes we do, you just can't see them right now, they're under the in the dirt making good compost." That's when I realized that the "pet worms" my sister is a very proud owner of are in fact: red composting worms. These worms are special for breaking down fruits, veggies, coffee grounds, egg shells, and paper making those products into the perfect mix of composting soil. As they eat they release all kinds of good vitamins and stuff that make the soil rich and wonderful. My sister is more of the expert on the worms, but one fascinating thing besides the above information, is that one worm can eat half of its weight in food everyday (which is why you obviously want a bunch of them). If you want more information here is a good link to read:

With that I started naming our many worms, I thought it would be easier if I gave one each a different letter of the alphabet...I got tired when I reach Ophelia, poor Penelope was never officially introduced to her name. :-P Back to the truth; my sister and I decided that we needed to set up our special trash cans in our kitchen again. She knew which ones we needed and I knew how to label them and make them look good. So together we came up with this, told you we were brilliant together:

Our Three Stooges Saving The Planet One Bag At A Time

Monday, January 13, 2014

Out With Old And In With The New

  I am a 20+ year old student who is finally moving out and starting a new adventure in a new place and at a new college. I am lucky that I am living with my sister who lives about twenty minutes away from the campus, this arrangement has a lot of advantages and benefits other than the obvious financial ones. The best advantages of living with my sister is that I will be able to have my own designated space, it's not going to be like a dorm where I have four people to a small area...not to mention bathroom. I grew up with a big sister and my mom and it was hard enough sharing the bathroom with three girls and my father....but six girls in one dorm.....ugh I'm not the one for that.  I am pleased that I will be able to assist my sister in things that she can use assistance in, such as helping her finishing painting rooms in her house or giving free babysitting for my nephew, yet still have my independence in this new adventure.
  With this new adventure, I am creating a fresh new space for myself and filling "an empty wall. Moving into my sister's house required certain prep work, I had to help my sister clean out her extra room which, like most households, it had become a "catch-all."  We worked for four and a half hours cleaning out the stuff and organizing the places that the stuff was going to be stashed, which was good because it spring cleaning for both of us.
  After cleaning out the room, I realized that it need a little more than a good clean, it needed fresh paint, the empty walls were dirty and cracking and the faded blue was just.....ugly, not to mention depressing. The original curtains that we removed were a beautiful retro floral print with giant disco blue flowers on them....the faded white background was so too much to comprehend and so overwhelming that the dust brought tears to my eyes. I promptly tossed them into my small garbage pale wondering if I should make one sheer into a pillow as a memento of our hard work. :-)  They looked just like this: 

 Here are the before pictures of the room:

Wall Behind Bed

Desk Before

Switch Cover Before 
  Now it was time to go shopping, I needed to take my small adorable space and turn it into something relaxing and inviting. I told myself that I had $100 to spend to re-do the entire room. I'm not about to spend 6 months to a year in a room that makes me want to never be there or makes me feel like I need to wear a  bag over my head. These are the before picture I will post below photos of the process in which I took this drabby room and turned it into a earthy toned safe study haven.

Cracks, Stains, and Vents...
 After patching up all the holes that previous house owners decorated the walls with, my room looked like it had caught the measles, and so I applied the Calamine Lotion. :-)

   After much thinking and a nice visit to Home Depot, I decided on a green color entitled "Asparagus" for my room and then have brown decor with a splash of teal as accent colors. I was proud to have done all the work by myself, but glad when it was done!
Painting the Ceiling

  I will have photos of the finished project in the next post.

Thursday, January 9, 2014

The New Chapter

The Journey
Mary Oliver

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
 though the voices around you
kept shouting their bad advice --
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt that old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend My Life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations --
their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice,
which you slowly recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing that you could do --
determined to save
the only life you could save.

(Trans. Array Dream Works. 1986. Print.)

I love a good adventure and I love change, change is  hardly ever easy, however, we all come to a point in life where change is inevitable.  I love to start with a fresh empty page and watch as new and beautiful things start to fill it.  I chose Mary Oliver's poem 'The Journey' to be the start of my introduction, not only because it's one of my favorites, but also because I love how she puts such a level of importance on change and starting something new for yourself, leaving all things behind and moving on to finding your own voice, or taking action to make a voice for yourself.  In the beginning of her poem she wrote,  "One day you finally knew what you had to do, and began, though the voices around you kept shouting their bad advice" which I think is an important idea to think about, how often do we put what others say about our lives on the front burner and put our own voice and opinions on the back? How often to do we just ignore all the good advice (and God's advice) and put silly superficial things on the front burner? We can't let other people dominate or run our lives based on what they think is "best for us" in the end we have to make the best decision for ourselves and our lives. I am not saying that we should ignore what everyone says completely, because some things that people say are very important, sometimes other people can give us great advice and wisdom, but in the midst of that we can forget that we have a voice and opinion. Further more, what is most important is where God is leading you and what he says is best for your life. I feel as though it is almost a declaration of starting fresh and new, and creating something that is your own, which we all know is so important.  So with that,  welcome to 'An Empty Wall' where I am starting a new journey of my own, into adulthood.  I chose my title because like an empty page, an empty wall is waiting to be filled with color, beauty, and design. I am also moving into a new place and creating a small space for myself; and believe me there were/are a lot of empty walls in my new space that need.....color. So I thought the title was only appropriate.