Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Tales From The Kitchen: Reasonably Clean Welcome

Did I make it? DID I MAKE IT???

I'm two days late but I so wanted to join in on the Reasonably Clean Welcome linky party over at Like Mother Like Daughter!

My initial efforts at transforming slightly improving my entryway were foiled by a temperamental camera, ghastly humid weather and my usual unrealistic methods of tackling projects. In short, the photos I took were unusable and for some insane reason I decided that I could not do anything about the entry without clearing out the pantry which somehow morphed into tackling THE ENTIRE KITCHEN. But that's a post for another day.

But today, all the stars aligned, the weather (and, therefore, the camera) cooperated and the kitchen had been beaten into submission so I managed to finish and post! Hurrah!

This is the entrance to the house that everyone uses. It's not truly the front door, as it opens into the kitchen, but it's the only sensible entrance to use (thank you, previous owners and your awkward and shoddy "improvements"). To be sure, this is not a true "before" shot. This was taken after The Viking got super-jiggy with a power washer. But before I bestowed upon it my lady's touch!

Now, I rather like what The Viking calls the jungle canopy and the blotchy, old-looking steps. And I also like the watering can and Wellies sitting there. But the orange nose hozzle and car-washing supplies must go!

Upon the threshold...dead plants--UGH!

This is very often what will greet you when you enter our house. Actually, most often it's a slightly larger, redheaded sort of person and she'll hardly tear her eyes from facebook to grunt hello to you rather than look directly at you. Nice mess, eh?

Close up (and a blurry one at that) for your viewing pleasure of the hockey sticks, shoes, laptop and purse always sitting there waiting to get in your way...

Here you see The Viking's primary dump zone. That bowl (which was a previous effort to corral this junk in a reasonably neat and tidy way) is FULL of (his) stuff! I keep my sunglasses in there and that is about it!

That pile of stuff in the bottom right corner (and, oops! I do see my cell phone and camera case sitting there) covers another previous Reasonably Neat and Tidy attempt: a large, flat strawberry bowl. And how about that Acme flyer? Do any of you play with those? That is also The Viking's; for some reason he is meticulously collecting the pieces for this. We like to tease him and call it his, "Aunt Dorothy game," because it seems like something one's old, dainty Aunt Dorothy would do and it's so unlike him! I would also like to point out the drugs (all legal). The Viking insists on keeping them in the kitchen. And out in the open. And usually in a hopeless jumble for some reason. I try to straighten them every day but it really does seem like a hopeless cause.

So, here's the new and improved version: still a wee bit jungle-y, but at least it's clean! There is something hideously appealing to me about sweeping my front steps on a sunny BUT NOT HUMID morning...

The boots, watering can and colony of cobwebs (maybe you can't see them, but they're there) got to stay. That was intentional.

I moved things around a bit, but this is usually how I have it. The Viking had moved things when he power washed so, really, it was just a matter of moving things back. And lots of sweeping, of course.

Ta-da! Spiffed up and lookin' in its prime! Hello, there, neighbor! Yes, I know there are a few things left out on the island, but if you're going to judge me on the basis of having my cookbook and a dishtowel sitting out in the kitchen in which I live and work then there probably isn't a very good chance of us being close friends and you being invited back anyway.

This was the best I could do. I've accepted that this area is simply going to need constant attention.  It's a dumping zone, there's no changing that.

Same goes for this spot. But I thought cleaning out the miscellaneous papers from my purse and snapping it shut helped a wee bit (still haven't done anything about the desk, though ;-)). And, yes, now you know what my purse looks like so you can come on over and steal it.

There was a lot more involved in this process than these photos show but, like I said, that is for another time, another post!


Marianna said...

Your home is adorable!! I love the jungle canopy :) What a warm and welcoming space.

Leila said...

You are so right about friends not worth having if they judge you for perfectly cute things on your island! I think there is such a thing as a COLD welcome ;)

You did a great job and I for one would love to come in!

How about this -- a hook or peg on the wall to the left of the desk -- for your bag! Because I love that wooden box -- perfect for the hockey sticks -- and you shouldn't hide it with your bag.

And, can I have your stove? Thanks.

Leila said...

Or, they sell loopy hooks for planters -- you could hook one on the side of the box so that your bag could go there. I just think that if the bag is hanging it looks better than sitting there. Mine sits on the bench in the mudroom, having said that :)