I suppose this is House Tour Week.


It is interesting to feel that, after just six or seven months, we’ve put more of ourselves into this house than we did into our old house. This house needed more love, so we got to make decisions about things that were more than just, “What color do we want the walls?” And also, we have had a little bit more money to spend on it now that we are a two-income family. It makes a difference – I am sure there are people who could make decorating decisions on the budget we had before, but I am simply not one of them. I don’t like yard sales or shopping for deals. I like to get deals, but I tend to decide what I want and then go for it rather than enjoying the chase.

Over Christmas, we spent a lot of time working on our front room, the library. I wanted to take pictures of a few things to show you what it looks like these days, and because some of my relatives who are far away haven’t gotten to see some things like the rug and some of the pictures. I don’t have any before pictures of this room, but when we moved in, it had beige carpet, cream trim, and beige walls. We still hope to deal with the trim at some point (maybe this summer), but for now things are in pretty good shape. We pulled up the carpet ourselves the first night we were here, and we painted soon after that. The color is Benjamin Moore’s Bar Harbor Beige.

So many things about the library are my favorite. My aunt bought that chair for us several years ago at the Salvation Army furniture sale, and this fall she got it recovered for us. I love how it looks in this room, and it’s probably my favorite chair in the house. (Alisa enjoyed it when she was waiting for the snow on Monday night.)

Mike got the big picture from the friend of ours who passed away in December, and the pictures hanging directly over the chair came with our Collector’s Edition of Beedle the Bard. It came with several sketches by J.K. Rowling, so it is fun to have artwork by her on our walls without it being Giant Pictures of Harry Potter. Our fandom can be more subtle. We picked four of them to hang on our wall, and another aunt bought the frames and mats for us for Christmas this year.

Under the picture is a cedar chest that was my grandmother’s. Sitting on it is a heavy wooden tray that was a gift a few years ago. On the other side of the big chair is the card catalog that Mike bought me for Valentine’s Day one year. On it are some family photos and a sign that reads “Library” that was also a gift (I never buy things for myself, are you noticing that?).



I won this picture, of the oldest building on UNCG’s campus, when I went to UNCG for orientation. Mike and I had it framed a few years ago and hung it in the library over the weekend (when we were frantically cleaning out Alisa’s closet).


Here’s another shot of those bookshelves. Mike bought me that “Read” sign from Books-A-Million a few weeks ago, and the angel came from Old Salem. We use it on our Christmas tree but like to have it out all year. As we have been putting things on top of our kitchen cabinets, I realized that I can’t just buy something in order to decorate with it. It has to mean something or be special to me in some way. It’s kind of a drag because it’s one of the reasons it takes me so long to decorate, but I like that the things we have have stories attached.



Mike’s friend helped us find those red chairs and the table between them, and the coffee table also came from my aunt. Mike and I bought the rug just before Christmas. Oh, and that’s Alisa’s poinsettia on the table. I think it has all come together to make a cozy room! A friend stopped by the other day and said, “This is such a grown-up room!” If we have kids, they will never be allowed in it.

Up next: I don’t really have before pictures of our bathroom, but I have some pictures of the completed one to show you, and Alisa says it’s okay to post pictures of her bathroom online.

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