…they came to stay

they came to stay...

We’re home now. I was starting to freak myself out with how comfortable I was getting at the Actuallys’. I probably could have stayed a month and still thought of fun things to keep us busy. I was eyeballing some planting pots they had in the garage. Give me a few more days and I’d have them planted with lavender and lemon-scented geraniums.

When the Actuallys did come home, it was a bit creepy knowing that I knew where things were better than they did. For example, I needed a little light to read a book with at night so I wouldn’t wake up Baby Bug by turning the ceiling light on. When I asked Bethany if I could borrow one she said she thought she had one around somewhere. And then I said, “It’s in the nightstand beside your bed on the right side, next to your cell phone cords.”

That’s just creepy.

So it’s time to go home. No matter how much I want to stay there and take over their house as my own, I don’t really want to star in my own horror movie.

Done Diddy Done Done!

star bright

Sigh. The house is done. Two days and it’s entirely unpacked. Well, except for five boxes of really boring computer parts in the guest-room closet and a mysterious collection of boxes in the garage that I can’t get to because I stacked up the packing paper and collapsed boxes from the rest of the house so high it would be like climbing Mt. Everest just to get to them…so I’m just going to leave those for the Actuallys. Or maybe they’ll save them for me for the next time I come cat-sit.

I’m actually kind of sad the fun is over. It was like Christmas, unwrapping everything. The professional movers wrapped everything in copious amounts of clean butcher paper so it was really a complete surprise every time I tore open a new box. Would the contents hold a supply of paper towels or a sword from the far East? Or maybe the other princess slipper!?

view of the library from the master bedroom

That was the funny part: how things were grouped together in boxes. You can tell the professional movers speed-packed. It was almost like unwrapping a time capsule. Whatever they came across went into the box. Rather than sorting like items and wrapping them together they just moved from left to right. Paper from the desk, photos of Annalie, a cat toy and a shoe! Why not?! Throw it all in, tape that sucker up and mark it “Office.” It was a hoot.

living room nook

Unlike all the times I’ve moved with my parents, nothing was dirty or dusty or ruined because it got left out in the weather. I didn’t discover any mice or anything broken. It was all very pleasant. Every box held a new surprise, something I had never seen before, some little puzzle piece to try and decipher. I hate to say that I’m the snooping type but unpacking the Actuallys was like unpacking stories from exotic lands. There were rugs from Morocco, puzzle boxes from Japan, paintings from Hong Kong…it was like unpacking for Marco Polo.

piano in better light

They’ve traveled the world and though they don’t have a lot of “stuff” per se (which is nice because too much clutter is a huge headache, believe me) they do have quite a few trinkets from far-off lands that are just dripping with intrigue. No, not that kind of intrigue. But I do plan on asking to hear the stories behind each item.

the royal wardrobe

And then there’s the part of me that just likes to find solutions. I would love love love to be on one of those shows that organizes people and turns a mountain of clutter into something perfect and orderly. I find great pleasure in thinking up new ways to put things together to make life easier, more efficient and fun. (Not that I’m taking credit for Annalie’s closet. It was pretty much like this when I got there. I just thought it was a pretty photo.)

Annalie's Art Studio

What I’m really proud of is the art studio I created for Annalie out in the garage. I guess the above photo doesn’t do much for it but it’s really really cool. You’ll just have to take my word for it. Annalie has a lot of art supplies and fun crafty bits. She’s a child after my own heart. But her supplies were scattered around in strange places. She had a lot of fun things in her closet but no real table to work on them.

I know she does her crafts in the kitchen with her mom but that was tricky too because it wasn’t really her space. I personally hate it that I have to clean up my art projects every day in time for dinner. If I could have a studio to leave my paintings in while they are in progress, I think I would die of happiness. That’s every artist’s dream, right? A room of her own.

le laundry

When I saw that the Actuallys had this HUGE garage with a simply divine laundry room, I shook my fists at the sky and yelled “Why me?! Why can’t I have this house?!!! Why do I have to wash my clothes with frat boys and homeless people at the laundromat?!!” Just kidding.

What I actually thought was, This garage would make a perfect art studio! It’s clean, it has a floor you can drip paint on, it has natural light…it’s perfect! It’s not even hot out there. Because it’s below their house (they have a split-level), the air-conditioning from the house seeps down into the cool garage below. I just love it. If Annalie doesn’t use it, I will!

Which is all part of my evil plan! Ha ha, hee hee, ho ho!