I LOVE white flowers! I know, flowers are supposed to be bright and colorful and a sort of pick-me-up, but there is something soothing and calm about white. Whether it's tulips, roses or carnations. They are good for the soul. My grocery store had them for $5.00 a bunch. I wish I could splurge on them for every room. :) I refresh the water everyday and cut a half inch or so at the bottom off the stems, they really suck up water. And I have this weird stuff called Preserve that I found at the garden center when we bought our Christmas tree. It has all the same nutrients as the little packets of powder you usually get with your cut flowers. It's the bomb. These are just so pretty on my island where I can see them all the time.
With Abigail moving last weekend and the hunt for a few things she needed that I insisted on getting for her, I found a few things that made me happy as well. I mostly wanted candles. I burn them constantly when it is gloomy or after it gets to be dusk. I truly believe the rooms become warmer, physically, though I really think it's a sensory reaction. In our weather here in the Midwest, dipping into the minus numbers most everyday, I feel my feet freezing on the hardwood floors of the kitchen until I put warm socks on. But come evening when I have my candles burning, I can pull the socks off and feel fine. Subliminal?
And I was loving the birdies I found. Think spring! A little potpourri that has the subtle scent of coconut and I'm dreaming of beaches. Oh, happy, happy, happy!
I was crazy busy before we moved Abby out on Saturday. I knew she needed a nightstand and lamp (and I found a great lamp at Target). And I found this little oak table in the basement, it used to be a TV stand for us. I knew she wasn't going to be a fan of the outdated 1980's look, so I surprised her and painted it one afternoon last week.
It's a very light gray, which is hard to tell in this pic. I had the quart of paint left over from a mirror frame I painted awhile ago so it didn't cost me a penny. I think it's so cool with the shelves and detailed sides. Two coats of paint and a light spray of matte poly to keep it protected. She loved it.
We moved her in last Saturday. It was a long day but so fun. This her bedroom on the 2nd floor. She bought the duvet and pillows at Target, the comforter is from Marshall's, the upholstered headboard came from Wayfair online for a song. I gave her my super thick and comfy throw from Pottery Barn...she had been cozying up under it for a long time and I knew it would make her feel at home. She was so thoughtful about everything she bought. She is adamant about keeping a nice cushion in her savings account and the expenses of finding her own things for this apartment were terrifying for her. I tried to help (but not take away from her responsibilities) by getting her a few things. Between the four girls, they really had all the essentials covered.
She has this wonderful long wall of built in cabinets so she didn't need a dresser. I found a ton of inexpensive pictures frames for her at Homegoods. She has given me a lot of pics to download and have printed and I haven't done it yet. :( She has many, many books, yet she keeps most of them stored inside the cabinets. "I don't want anybody to think I'm a nerd". Sigh.
She has a fabulous closet, this being the loft in the house. The girls and their mothers were in awe of her abundance of clothes (she shops for them like her sister and I shop for our homes). Oh, yeah, the size X-small aisle at TJ Maxx!
They say it takes a village and it sure did. We moved the girls in and it involved the parents (mothers and fathers) of the four girls, their respective boyfriends, and some of their siblings. Everyone chipped in; the guys moved beds, mattresses and dressers. We moms cleaned and organized. We had a wonderful midday meal of baked lasagna, Italian beef sandwiches and homemade mac and cheese (that I made :)). We had great mimosa's that always seem to be a staple at the many of the occasions I blog about, wine and plenty of beer for the hardworking men. After these guys unloaded SUV's and vans, they hung up the 60 inch TV my son Jeff donated and various pictures, mirrors and what have you with their power drills.
I bonded big time with the mothers. I had never really met them as we all live in different parts of the Southside and the girls had formed their friendships in our nearby high school where students come from all over. All four of us were becoming empty nester's for the first time and it made for some heartfelt talk. But it was mostly upbeat as we helped the girls get situated and participated in their excitement.
But...I so felt it the next day. That overwhelming pull -the-covers-over-your-head sadness. I really thank all of you for your warm wishes and advice in my last post where I blathered on about my baby leaving home. As much as I want to say I've taken it all in stride...I haven't. I may be veering off into left field but I want to mention a website I subscribe to called MindBodyGreen. It's like a self help book that doesn't involve 14 chapters of redundant info that you forget in five minutes. You simply pick and choose the articles you want to read. In a nutshell, Sunday afternoon, after forcing myself to take a shower and straighten up the house, I happened to go to this website and read an article posted that day called, The Upside Of Feeling Bad". How ironic. There was a paragraph that resonated with me, "Accept the wave whatever the ride. You use all of your energy pushing it away." This was truly food for thought. I spent a lot of time that day letting my thoughts and feelings flood over me; how I left home so easily in my 20's without so much as a glance backwards. Did Abby have that lack of feeling that I did for home and family? And don't get me started on why I felt that way then. That's a whole different post if not a book. It all boils down to me feeling what I need to feel instead of running away from it.
pictures of Lake Shore Drive a lot, don't I? It's an iconic part of Chicago. I mostly share the lake view...this is the limited skyline I was able to snap through the car window when we left the Northside at about 7 that night. Beautiful, but it made me feel a little empty. The siren song that took my girl.
In spite of what I read and did Sunday (and I hope you take a peek at that website), yesterday and today I have thrown myself into cleaning, organizing, laundry, cooking and baking. I took Layla to the vet yesterday to get the ear plug taken out (love that sexy Dr. B. I am such a shameless cougar!). That perked me up (the getting out, puleeeez!) and I was also happy to get a few phone calls from Abby and some texts. She wanted pics and videos of the dogs and the prints of her photos. She is nesting in her new place, as I am as well. It's a new and somewhat difficult time for both of us, but it will make us stronger and more mature. And above all, we will always have each other. That will never change.
I promise in my next post that I will have my act together and share some boring recipes, maybe a few mundane shopping trips with Emily. I might coax The Husband out for dinner at a new place, and yes, I'm visiting MC and our precious Elsie Thursday. Can't wait! I wanted to tell you that I received in the mail the sweetest gift for the baby from one of my very best blogger friends, Mary. I have carried on way too long so I am going to post a picture of my granddaughter with this lovely present in my next post. Thank you, Mary. Please visit her, she's a lovely person!
If I haven't visited you or thanked you for your comments, I will be around soon. It has been crazy here. And I lost a bunch of ladies I followed by email. I finally figured out those blogs somehow ended up in my Spam folder, so friends, I'm catching up, it wasn't personal.
I'll be back soon (and on a more positive note!).
Joining in on a new multi-blogger fun party called Share Your Style. Visit and see some great ideas at No Minimalist Here!