When we moved to Atlanta, I kept waiting until our apartment was set up "just right" to take pictures and post them, and then we moved out before that happened. I'm telling myself not to do that with this house, knowing that I will be continually rearranging and acquiring new things. I realize now that a home is never truly "finished" - what would be the fun in that? So I'll try to share room by room and project by project as I go, and probably re-sharing the same room again as I change it up.
We'll start with the room I was most looking forward to having: the craft room! I knew I wanted to set up this room first because if I put it off, it would never get done. Our finished basement is divided into two rooms. On one side is Mark's "man cave" and on the other is my "mom cave." I love having all my arts and crafty stuff easily accessible. The majority of my organizing gear came from the always wonderful resource, Ikea.
The table, shelves, drawer unit, wall magazine holder, lazy susan - all Ikea.
I was lucky that the room already had a ledge along one wall. I lined up paper and other odds and ends in these cheap FLYT magazine files.
So there it is. I'm super happy about how it turned out. When Scarlett is a little older, I want to add low shelves with books, toys, crayons, and stuff (probably this EXPEDIT unit that can double as a bench) and a child-sized table under the window. Then we can have mommy-daughter craft time. For now I can sneak in some craft time of my own during Scarlett's super short naps... maybe...
It's late afternoon/early evening. Scarlett starts to get a little grumpy around this time, so I like to distract her by taking her outside. The front porch is covered, so it provides a little relief from the summer heat. We swing together on the porch swing, singing some songs in between listening to all the sounds outside. "Do you hear the train? I hear some doggies barking. Does that breeze feel good?" Scarlett is wide eyed and takes everything in. Her gaze is fixed on the swaying branches of a tree, its leaves quivering in the wind. Above us the sky is blue, but dark clouds loom just ahead. Low and persistent rumbling enters our lesson in sounds. "Do you hear that thunder, Scarlett?" Lightning flashes in the distance. "I think a storm is coming, baby."
As we watch it roll in, I flashback to a childhood memory: I'm 8 or 9 years old sitting with my mom on the porch swing of our "blue house" in Simpsonville, and we're watching a summer thunderstorm together. I remember thinking, "This is kinda cool." Maybe this is when thunderstorms stopped being scary and started being a strangely serene experience. It's ironic that something so powerful and threatening can be so relaxing.
Now I flash ahead to a little daydream of Scarlett a few years older swinging with me as we watch another summer storm together. I imagine her asking me lots of questions about anything and everything. Maybe she'll still like to sing songs. I kiss her head just like I do now.
However, at the present time, as curious as she is about the world, I don't think Scarlett would find a storm quite as calming just yet. The wind picks up and I tell her I guess it's time to go inside. "But I think we have time for one more song..."
Today Scarlett and I went treasure hunting at our local Goodwill store. I found a bunch of cool stuff, including a side chair that only needs the seat cushion recovered. So I was really excited about my finds and checked out happily, even though it took forever for the guy to wrap up all the fragile stuff. When he was finished, I turned around to take away my haul. I had Scarlett in the Moby Wrap as I pushed the loaded cart with one hand and awkwardly grabbed the chair with the other. I was just starting to make my slow shuffle toward the door when an older, majorly redneck lady asked if I needed some help. I had seen her behind me, but I wasn't paying attention to whether she checked out at the next register or was still waiting behind me or just walking around. She reeked of cigarette smoke, and I'm pretty sure she was drunk at 11:30 am. But hey, I did need help. She handed me her merchandise (a notebook, a DVD, and two pillowcases) and said "Here, put this in the buggy, and I'll take this," grabbing the chair. "Let's go." Her stuff wasn't in a bag.
We walked a few steps toward the door. "Oops, did you buy this stuff yet?" I asked, trying to be loud enough for the workers to hear.
"Yeah." And we walked out.
Ok, I don't know if I believed her, but what was I supposed to do, ask to see her receipt? I can't say for sure she was stealing, but it seemed suspicious. So now I feel a little bad. Did I just aid a criminal? Am I an accessory? Or did nothing really happen and I'm just being judgmental? Did I just help cheat a charitable organization out of $6.00? Oh well, since I had just donated a bunch of stuff right before, I guess we'll just call it even...