Domestically Challenged, Yet Improving

The Armoire

I have to say I am pretty damn proud of myself. I am generally quite domestically challenged, but this week, I made myself a jewelry “armoire.” I tend to be a bit frugal, while husband dear tends to be a spender. I hem and haw over making a big purchase. “Pre-shopping” is a full-time hobby of mine. Just ask my friends who got to the mall with me. They come home with bags, and I come home empty-handed after trying on a ton of clothing. Then I may go back and get one item. Well, I have been wanting a jewelry armoire for close to a year. (This one is nice, too.) But I go to JC Penney and check them out. Sometimes they are on sale. Sometimes I have a coupon. Yet somehow, it always seems like an insanely frivolous purchase. Granted, if we stopped eating out for a week, we’d recoup our loss.

Anyway, my birthday recently passed (35 — yipes! I’m officially middle aged, which is obvious when I now have to check the 35-50 box). I asked for the armoire. Sujal did not want to buy it, mainly because he did not think it would match our future bedroom set. Sometimes I wondered about the quality of the armoires. They can seem to be shoddily made. So I did not get one.

My friend, Rita, is doing a little eBay selling project. She has a closet full of wares to sell, so I was peeking through. She had this Ikea unfinished pine cabinet. When I saw it, I figured I could buy it off of her, stain it, put in some hooks, and then I’d have a fancy armoire! Basically, I just wanted one for my necklaces, so I could actually see what I have instead of keeping them in a tangled mess in little boxes. So I did just that. I went out and got some stain — oil-based — oops! I stained that puppy. Don’t worry. It has character. There are my finger marks on the top. Then I put in twenty-six little brass hooks.

We were going to hang the cabinet on the wall, though we are afraid of hanging things on the plaster, because we don’t really know how to. We’ve looked into it, but we’re always afraid the walls will crumble. And frankly, it looks damn good! (If I don’t mind saying so myself!)

The Garden

Then, Lara came over to take some flowering weeds off of our hands. The flower beds are the bane of my existence. The weeds are winning! So we dug and dug, pulling out Black-Eyed Susans, Lily of the Valley, and other flowering weeds that I don’t recall their names. Lara also had this great idea to “kill” weeds. If you weed an area where you want nothing to grow (at least for a bit), then lay newspaper down and mulch over it. The newspaper is biodegradable, so it won’t hurt anything, But the weeds can’t grow through it. I did this decent sized section, and next year, we can plant grass there!!

The next big home improvement task: taking down a border in our living room and painting lots of walls.

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