I had mixed success completing the daily tasks for the January Cure this week, but the overall result is that I have a cleaner home and a clearer idea of how to improve it.
Day 4: Get a fresh perspective in just 10 minutes.
As a longtime apartment dweller, I know one of the luxuries of my home to be the TV-less sitting room (shown above). With its exposed brick, original floors, and original marble mantel, it's aIso the room that sold me on the house. I usually sit on the love seat facing the hearth, and my husband usually sits in the leather armchair across from me. The third seat is an Eames knockoff that I like to look at but never sit in and which I didn't really miss when we temporarily replaced it with our Christmas tree.
Ten minutes in this un-cushioned seat confirmed that I want to replace it with a slightly bigger, softer, and more inviting chair. The view from there is a good one (shown above). The two issues I noticed while perched were organizational: the stack of opened mail floundering on the entry table and the basket that was intended for our dogs' accessories but which becomes a catch-all for magazines, etc. I'm considering finding a small mail basket for the floor next to the entry table and a barely-there side table for over the basket by the couch.
Day 5: Select one project to complete this month.
I wanted to pick my kitchen hardware project of shame, but based on my habits and schedule, I know it's not going to happen on a Tuesday night. I decided that a realistic project is to re-hang the curtains in my bedroom so that the rods are wider set. Right now, they look cramped. I like this project because it's free!
Day 6: Choose a piece of artwork and get going on framing it.
I have the frame, but I need the art. I have been using a Parisian map, turned on its side, as a placeholder in a poster frame in my dining room (on the far left). The colors work in there, but I can only leave my favorite city off kilter for so long (only like, oh, several months).
Day 7: Get your get-together together.
I failed. I did cull enough clothes and shoes from my closet to fill my outbox, though, and gave my coffee table a desperately needed clearing and cleaning.
Day 8: Flowers, kitchen cleaning & make yourself a meal.
It felt really, really good to clean my kitchen, where the patterned granite hides crumbs and the white tile shows paw prints. I cleared everything off my countertops and scrubbed them with an orange-scented Method cleaner. On Monday, a day late, the same spray gave new life to the inside of my fridge. I'm pretty sure my homemade meal, a giant dish of Martha Stewart's macaroni and cheese, is the cheesiest thing I've ever made. I set the table with grocery store tulips.
MORE OF KIM'S JANUARY CURE:
• Week One
(Images: Kim Rinehimer)