Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Inspired by Virginia...

Well, revisions have been turned in which means it's time to catch up on some things around the house before the edits roll in. My men were all gone this weekend, so, after reading the post about Virginia's reading nook, I finally tackled the one thing that's been hanging over my head for months--my office. 
I needed to purge and I needed to paint. 

 This is what my office used to look like.
The shelf never did really find a purpose, so I removed it months ago, repainted it and gave it a new life in the dining room where it now proudly displays my collection of teacups.

Oops, I didn't even realize that Christmas decoration was still up there. Guess I'd best put that away.

This is what my desk looked like during revisions.
What a mess!
I used to watch a home decorating guy who said, "A cluttered space is a cluttered mind." 
Well, let me tell ya, honey. :)
Oh, and see those curtains? Gone. Not sure where I'll use them, but I think I'd rather just go with a valance. 

But tackling a job like this takes strength and stamina. So it was important I fortify myself with a hearty breakfast. You know, oatmeal has gotten a bad rap. And I can totally understand why. When I was a kid, oatmeal came out of a packet. Not the flavored kind, I hated those, but just the plain stuff, which was kind of like powdered oatmeal. Then I'd add some brown sugar and milk. That was it.

No wonder I hated the stuff.

Today I start with a third of a cup of  old-fashion style oats.
Then I add two packets of Splenda (I'll be looking into Truvia as soon as I run out. Thanks, Jan), a couple dashes of salt and some cinnamon. 

Now I could stop there and it would taste okay, but I don't want okay. I want spectacular.
So I add a few raisins. I like the golden.

And then, for a bit of texture, I'll add some flax seed or pecans.
Love me some pecans!

Add two-thirds of a cup of water, microwave for two minutes and voila!
Okay, so it still doesn't look like much, but it tastes wonderful. And the cinnamon smells so good.

Now to get started on my office.

For me, the painting is the easy part. The purging? Not so much. I wish I were an organized person.
But I'm not. So, I put on my big girl panties and plowed headlong into the mess that was my office. I tossed, I shredded, I dusted, I wondered how in the heck some items had come to live in my office. 
But in the end, it was all worth it.

The rest of that far wall will soon have a very large white board. I'm a visual person, so I like to plot out my characters/story on a white board with lots of different colored markers. The hero is blue, the heroine is pink and it goes on from there. 
Notice that I also painted the wicker chair in the lower right corner. I did that back in the fall. Spruced that tired old garage sale find right up and added a pop of color to the room.

And I can now see the top of my desk.
I've still got a few things left to square away. Like that webcam there to the right of the monitor. My husband gave that to me for Christmas 2012 and it's still in the box. The worst part is that I asked for it! I've just been too afraid to hook it up. I need to grab one of our techie friends and hop on that.
All in all, I'm very pleased. Matter of fact, I think I'll just stay in my office. 
Because the rest of the house...well...
What a mess!


  1. It looks scary clean. I had company for four days. My office was clean for four days.

    “If a cluttered desk is a sign of a cluttered mind, of what, then, is an empty desk a sign?”

    ― Albert Einstein

    1. Ha! Great counter with the quote there, Tina. I think I'll hang onto that one from now on. :)

    2. Oh, I like that quote much better (as I sit here amid a woefully cluttered desk)!

    3. I love that cross-quote!!!!

      I am functionally disorganized with a creative bend.

      That means I don't care that I look disorganized, it's what gets produced (very outcome-based friendly, right????) at the end of the day that goes in the ledger book.

      But I would like to APPEAR more organized.

      Although we did make M&M peanut-studded peanut butter cookies today.... instead of cleaning. :) Priorities for 3 year old's science lesson!

    4. That's exactly it, Ruthy. I would like to appear organized. Because even in my clutter, I usually know where things are.

  2. Yeah, I like Tina's counter-quote too. Of course your mind is cluttered -- helllooooo you have all those characters in there clamouring for your attention!

    I love reorganizing and repurposing! And love that red chair. Did you paint it with a brush or spray paint it? I have a wicker piece that could benefit from some sprucing up but I've been a scaredy cat about painting it.

    And hey -- I eat oatmeal every morning. I need something that's going to stick to my ribs before I hike out into the cold. Brrrrrrrr. I want spring.

    1. Kav, you are welcome to bring your reorganization skills to Texas any time you like. :)

      I used spray paint on the chair. Took a few coats, but got into the nooks and crannies much better than with a brush.

      So what do you add to your oatmeal, Kav?

    2. I am an oatmeal connoisseur. Love blueberries or strawberries. Adore raisins. A sprinkle of cinnamon, a pinch of nutmeg. Once (okay more than once) I was really decadent and added some nutella...like eating liquid chocolate oatmeal cookies!!!!!

    3. Be still my heart. Nutella...YUM! I just might have to try that when I'm feeling naughty.

  3. I'm having oatmeal for breakfast this morning! I add stuff, too. My current favorite is frozen mixed berries - only a couple tablespoons - but oh, so good!

    And I'm waiting...waiting to get my office back. I had one before our college girl graduated and moved back home. Someday she'll get married, or have her college loans paid off, and abandon us again :( But the upside is that I'll have an office again!

    1. It is a trade off, isn't it, Jan? So where is your woefully cluttered desk now?

      Ooo, the frozen berries would be good in the summer. Dried cranberries are good too, I just don't have any right now.

    2. My woefully cluttered desk is in the family room - right next to the wood stove, which has been very nice this winter! - but a little public. I've gotten good at tuning things out and grabbing writing time while no one else is at home.

      But I REALLY miss my white boards! That's one reason my desk is cluttered - instead of keeping track of all kinds of things on my white boards, I write use sticky notes - both physical and the computer program. But too many sticky notes makes clutter :(

      And not enough book shelves. Sigh.

    3. I wish I could learn to tune stuff out. I'm better at tuning in than tuning out. :)

  4. This post is ALL kind of wonderful!

    But mostly, when I saw your tea cups, I enlarged my screen and stared at them for a while. I never knew there was that turquoise and silver combination. I may have to see one of those out somewhere. Those are just... SO lovely. And I should definitely find a shelf to display mine.

    See, now you've inspired me to get my jumble of pretty cups out of the cupboard and into view!

    1. I love teacups, Virginia. They make drinking tea an event. These are some that belonged to my mother and grandmother. The turquoise ones are my favorite, but I double-checked and it is gold, not silver. However, silver would look really cool, don't you think?

      Time to start scouring garage sales/thrift stores for a shelf, because Goldie and her friends would love to be out in the open.

    2. LOL I also stopped at the pic with the teacups and tried enlarging them! one looks like one I have but a different color but couldn't get close enough to see...I went a little teacup crazy last fall (along with quilt crazy) and bought kinda lots thanks to etsy and rubylane and ebay (yes I'm enabling LOL!)
      I also hadn't checked in here until just now but it's kinda spooky 'cause I started off my day with hot cereal(I have some of that Bob's Red Mill 5 rolled hot cereal mix)with truvia and added cranberries(wish I'd thought about cinnamon!), greek yogurt and a banana - normally my breakfast is scrambled eggs in breakfast taco setup...and hot tea! plus I've been off and on picking stuff up and re-arranging things...really scary. hope none of ya'll start taking curtains down and painting (barely made it through the book nook painting...)

    3. Another tea girl. Love it, Susanna. :)

  5. I'm embarrassed now, but I have a nice looking dining room so I'll pretend that's my office, LOL!!!!

    Oh, Mindy, I love this. Offices are just such a catch all sometimes, and mine is in the attic so it tends to be a drop off point to get things off the second floor.... and then I have to have time to put away NEATLY.... and when they had to do the roof over my attic and spare bedroom twice this past summer... yes, they had to come back and tear off the new roof and re-do it because it was that bad.... they had to tear into the office a second time and there's been no time to re-organize.

    It's on my February calendar (with March as a buffer) so hopefully we'll be cute by the end of spring.

    I may just hire a DUMPSTER.


    I love this. I love the clean, fresh feeling you gave this space. I am totally inspired!!!! Now I just need time.

    I'm hiring a grown up kid to come help out so I can finish my "catch-up" jobs this year....

    Either that or I'll find a corner and write!

    Thank you ... and Virginia!!!!.... for more inspiration.

    1. Ruthy, my office also serves as the boys' TV room. I hate when there off of school and try to take over my office. I have to remind them that it's my office first.

      Reorganization is such a chore. Worth it, but exhausting. Maybe we could Kav to come help since she like reorganizing. ;)

  6. Mindy, I love what you did! It looks great. I still need to de-clutter! that's the story of my life. :)