The Victorian House

Hello, 2019

Happy New Year! The holiday decorations are down and I’ve been cleaning and tidying in preparation for hosting my sister’s baby shower next week. I have the strongest urge to really tidy and clear things out, KonMari style, but I have to restrain myself. Now is not the time to face the mountain of books we own and pare down. Now is the time to hide the stacks of books too numerous to fit on our shelves, squirreling them away on the second floor where we hope no guest will venture.

Christmas Garland, Doubling as Winter Baby Shower Decor

The kids are back in school this week. We’ve had a good break, though by the end of it when the kids are bored and have had their fill of video games (including making a character inspired by me — “she loves to clean, mom!”), school is a welcome return to routine. (And no, my darling children, I don’t love to clean. I enjoy it about as much as you do, though I probably do enjoy the results far more.)

The year started out full speed ahead on getting our back entry in order and creating a sort of pseudo-mudroom. I’m happiest in one of two modes, either dreaming up new design plans or puttering around the house, fixing little things here and there. This work on the back entry satisfies both. We have had water issues in various forms (leaky pipes, leaky roof) that I’m hoping we’ve got under control, and now begins the process of fixing the damage.

Cutting down IKEA cabinets with a table saw

I’ve already cut down a couple of cabinets to fit the shallow ledge above the foundation wall just inside the back door. There’s much more to do, but here’s to jumping in, getting started, and getting things done! May we all have more of that in this new year.

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  • Marie
    January 8, 2019 at 3:15 am

    Oooooh I’d be interested to read how you purge your library… we have tried to go more to the public one and borrow books… these days we only buy comics as we know we’ll enjoy reading them again… but still, new books seems to be flying to our home…
    Happy new year !

  • Kim B.
    January 8, 2019 at 4:22 am

    I think KonMari is wrong on the books front and way too severe.

    I read the paragraph about your mud room as a pseudo-MUSHroom three times!!! I could NOT figure out what was going on (nor can I now understand how I came up with that!). Glad you are past the structural issues and on to the fun part.

    All best for a wonderful 2019!

  • Loretta De Stefano
    February 23, 2019 at 1:07 pm

    Hi, this is Loretta from New York City. I love and share your aesthetic. Thank you for your dedication to your post and providing valuable information. I too am at home with projects and truly enjoy shopping at building stores. FYI. I lived in Chicago for two years, where my husband and I bought an old brownstone with five pages of problems and violations. Luckily the market headed north and in two years we made a nice profit. Most of all, we loved the house and miss it.