The Emotional Stuff – Part 2

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About 10 days ago I wrote this post.

2015-06-22 01Tonight I would like to follow that up with this piece, also written by my friend, Patty.

 In the town of my youth, behind the double brick home that is my mother’s neighbour’s house, is a hoarder.
The daughter of a very cranky, intolerant almost-100 year old father, (who lives in a nursing home on the other side of the river) she lives by herself with her mother’s memories and furniture.
Downstairs, you are barely able to squeeze past the belongings of her mother’s old home.
The furniture, the tables, the sofas, dusty with age and just covered with plastic, the china cabinets, and boxes, and boxes, and boxes of glassware and who-knows-whatever-else. All stored.
Filling up her house, cluttering her own life.
She moans to my sister as they hose their lawns. “I wish I could travel! It’s too expensive.”
My sister and I would sympathise and suggest she sell some of her mother’s possessions.
“Oh no! I could never do that! It’s too precious!”
And so her life is unlived, her home a rambling, chaotic mess of someone else’s life.
There’s barely enough room for herself. Her mother lives on, in every room.
It’s physically demanding, cramped and unacceptable.
She lives within the shadows, unhappy, miserable, resentful, and unable to move on.

She knows the answer to the situation, she just hasn’t asked herself the question.
Why keep it all, and what happened to MY life!

I have said to my own sons: “When I go, keep what you want, no obligation, and chuck the rest!”

While this is probably an extreme example, it is a stark reminder that we cannot live our lives if we are weighed down by emotional attachments to the stuff of previous generations.

How do you feel about this?  Have you had to deal with this sort of situation?

An Antimacassar

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I recently made a new antimacassar (headrest cover) for an armchair which belongs to my mother.

001The original concept of these linens dates from the Victorian era and you can read more about them here.  They were draped over the headrest of a chair or sofa but I chose to use some elastic to hold my handiwork in place.

I cut up a brand new pillowcase which had some promotional printing on either end.  It was in Mum’s stash of new linen but was unlikely to ever be used as a pillowcase and it was perfect for making this.  In fact, this is only half of the story as there were 2 pillowcases and I made another for a second chair.

It is easy to forget how much wear and tear the headrest of an armchair takes.  The other chair is also leather and the ptch at the centre of the headrest had actually worn right through some time ago.  Mum had made an antimacassar for that chair using a small linen table runner but that had subsequently worn to the point where it was almost worn out.

Now the two chairs have new antimacassars, there are two less pillowcases stashed away and I did not have to buy anything new for this simple but effective sewing project.

Gluten-Free Pasta – An Update

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A couple of weeks ago I wrote this post about making my own gluten-free pasta which includes the recipe.

004The fettucine and lasagne sheets were packaged and frozen for later use.

003I made a large dish of lasagne last week and GMan declared that it was really good.  That is high praise indeed, especially since he can happily eat conventional pasta if he wishes.

Tonight was the big test when I boiled the fettucine to add to sliced sauages in a spicy sauce.  I made sure the water was at a rolling boil and I added the frozen bundles of pasta.  Once it had come back to the boil it was only about 2 minutes until the pasta was ready.  My worst fears of a gluggy mass at the bottom of the saucepan were not realised and I will definitely continue to make my own gluten-free pasta.

Bookcase – A New Home

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After my busy day yesterday and long post I thought I would keep it short and sweet tonight.

The bookcase has gone to a new home via the local Buy, Swap, Sell page on Facebook.  It is destined to be a storage unit in a new nursery.  The lady is intending to get some wicker baskets to put on the shelves.

I am really pleased that it will be used and useful.  Much better than cluttering up our home unnecessarily when someone else can benefit.  Keep this in mind when you are trying to declutter things.

003

Home Office/Library

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Today I have been revamping the home office/library area in our home.  This is really a follow up post to one I wrote in January which you can read here.

I finally moved the Australian Geographic magazines to the bottom shelf of the shelving unit in the lounge room and finally the bookcase was empty.

003I advertised it on a couple of local Facebook Buy, Swap, Sell sites and it looks as though it will be going to a new home tomorrow.

2011-12-21 01This is what one side of the office looked like a couple of years ago.  The freezer has been moved downstairs and with one bookcase ready to go we now have this blank corner.

009I am planning to get a comfy chair to put in the corner and create a reading nook.

Meanwhile, on the opposite wall we have a folding trestle table which we use as a computer desk.

001This was always only a temporary measure but it has been like this for nearly 10 years!  After much searching I have found this piece at IKEA.  I have only seen it online but hopefully it will measure up to my expectations.

indexThe look of the room has been changed by re-arranging some of the artwork we have.

007These are above the computer desk at the moment but if I end up getting the IKEA desk I will relocate them to the other side so they will be above the reading chair.

Here are a couple of others which have also been changed around.

008The office/library is a rather strange room due to the fact that the house was extended many years ago before we bought it.  This room was originally the main bedroom at the end of the house, however, it is now a walk-through room to the additional bedrooms.  The cupboards in the above photo would have been the original wardrobe.  The right-hand side is my linen cupboard and the left-hand side holds the filing cabinet.

004As you can see from the link in the first paragraph, we downsized from a 4 drawer filing cabinet to a 2 drawer one.  This left plenty of space but it was not particularly functional.  Today, we have cut down an offcut of melamine coated shelving and created a new shelf.

006There is still more to do but I feel as though I a winning the battle to make the office/library into both a functional and pleasant space.

Winter Morning

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Yesterday morning I walked along the verandah.  It was sunny but quite cool and this was the vision that greeted me.

002One of the newer hibiscus shrubs which has only been in the ground for about a month and there were half a dozen bright pink flowers.  I am hoping this is a preview of things to come as these shrubs grow and we have a mass of dense foliage and brilliant flowers in front of the verandah.