My Home In Its Current Undecorated State


See the beautiful work of art there on the potting bench shelf? My wonderful reader and friend Gayle got that for me, from a gardener and artist I recently welcomed on Welcome Wagon, Garden Up Green. I love it! It is a mosaic of pieces of paper. 

But the potting bench may have to be the first thing to leave this room, so it will likely end up someplace else. 

Now for the behind-the-scenes photos I normally would not show...


The good news is that the pupsters love the new sofa/chaise arrangement. The bad news is that I can't figure out how to decorate this room so that it doesn't look like, well, what it looks like.


I normally would never show an unmade bed. But my body has so many aches I simply walked away from it unmade this morning, unlike the other mornings since I've been here when I had a little more mojo.


My desk area in front of the window in the bedroom. Dark, I know. It's very overcast outside. I tried to lighten it up in Picmonkey and only managed to make it look grainy. Use your imagination.

I purchased the office chair from Wayfair and actually managed to put it together myself, which is no small feat when you have difficulty following written directions. So far it has not dumped me to the floor. 


Obviously this is at the other end of the bed wall. I chose to put my big TV in here that was in the living room at the other house. I never turn it on in the daytime, so it was never used there. 

However, at night I typically turn it on to see if there are any Law & Order (in all its variations) or Criminal Minds reruns on that I have not already seen more than 3 times. So the little one is in the closet. No TV in the living room for me.


This is across from the sofa. No, I have no idea quite how I'm going to work any magic here. Have a few ideas, but none that make me do a happy dance. This is where most would put a TV I suppose.


The coffee table, which I adore, just doesn't seem to fit though. What to do? What to do? Should I get rid of it???


Hate, hate, hate the typical apartment mini and vertical blinds. Will have to figure something out there as well.

You can see the end of the sofa here, so now you see just how much space I have for the rest of this area. Not much. It is too cramped and there are decisions that will have to be made. I don't want this to look like furniture lined up in a showroom. 

Right now the microwave is on the coffee bar, which I'm not crazy about, but it doesn't look right on the counter either.


My very small kitchen. What you can't see in this pic, because there is not room to back up to photograph it, is that on the far right are my black bookcases, in an L-shaped configuration, once again standing in for a pantry. 

So now you see the old white refrigerator, the beige stove, the white stove hood, and the even more beige dishwasher. Mercy me. Is this a matter of color blindness? 

I think it is a matter of putting in here whatever was working and leaving me to deal with what to do to make this kitchen look more cohesive. I am not a matchy-match person. But three colors on three appliances in close proximity just will not work. 


Now we go out the patio doors to my wonderfully big fenced-in patio. It looks like a junk yard right now. 

Charlie is searching down the cats that think this is their yard, and seem not to understand that this is now a "dog yard." Mayhem may be in their future.


Here's the view at the opposite end. I probably have 100 boxes over there at the end, broken down. Does anyone need any free moving boxes?

This patio has great "bones", if you will; wonderful possibilities. But it's going to take awhile to uncover them. 

Those are my socks drying on the chair. Remember? No washer/dryer here.

Okay, now you've seen it. 

This morning (oh, I see it is no longer morning) I am moving a bit slow. Had my cereal about two hours later than I usually do. Just finished a second cup of coffee. 

And I sit on this very comfortable sofa/chaise (a great buy I might add), and wonder what on earth to do next.

I showed you photos I normally would not show. I cringe at them. Because though I never have a home that looks like the housekeeper has just left (don't have a housekeeper and can't afford one), it never looks like this. 

Totally cringe-worthy. 

Most of the stuff is unpacked. But it's readily apparent that even more things are going to have to go outside, where there are already a lot of things (looks like a furniture graveyard out there), or they will have to be donated. 

Now, which things do I choose to keep? I kind of wish I was on a TV show where I didn't actually have to make the choice. "Do you want to keep what is behind door #1, door #2, or door #3?"

Actually I might have had more success at marriage if I'd been offered this approach...

Suggestions greatly appreciated...

My magic wand seems to need new batteries.



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190 comments

  1. I have one small suggestion for your kitchen concerning the beige dishwasher. You could buy one of those dishwasher magnets that covers the whole dishwasher door. They have different designs to choose from. You wouldn't notice the different colored appliances side by side if it was covered. The stove and refrigerator wouldn't bother me.

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  2. I have looked into that. Also a few other ideas I found googling this dilemma. But no time to deal with it now. Thanks for your input!

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  3. I love your fenced in patio.. It has so much potential.. You even have trees !
    Everything will come together, I'm sure.. I love your round oak coffee table. I think you should keep it, but that's your decision.
    I agree with Sue, in that a picturesque magnet on your dishwasher would add color and disguise the color that you're unhappy with.
    It was nice to visit your new home.. I think you made a good decision to move in.
    Charlotte

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    Replies
    1. Thank you my friend! Yes, the patio was definitely the draw. Without it, I'd probably have kept looking for a place that would allow me my washer/dryer.

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  4. I'm in total agreement with the others about the magnet, might be the easiest way to cover it. I too would keep that little oak coffee table for a while at least, let yourself settle into the place and get comfortable. The patio is amazing, perfect for you, no lawn to mow, and you have trees! Love the story about the little tree! And it survived the car ride over, too. You guys are meant to be together. I love your little white bed frame. Is that old? Just don't rush things, it will come together for you.

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    Replies
    1. I found that bed frame last year at a junk shop for $35. I spray painted it white.

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    2. You did a great job, it's adorable!

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  5. Just a random thought..deck boxes..like at TArget, can store lots and provide seating as well..outside. That wouold be something to buy though.

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    Replies
    1. Well, there are going to be things to buy. Right now I have to get rid of stuff first!

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  6. Glad you are safely moved in!! Just take your time getting settled. Looking forward to seeing how your make this new place into a home. Loved how you decorated the kitchen in your old house. I was going to mention the dishwasher magnets too ;)
    Try to get some rest today!

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    Replies
    1. I'm one of those people who find it difficult to rest in chaos. But I'm too tired to do much. Yes, I'm glad I'm at least moved in!

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    2. As to the dishwasher, check first to make sure if the front panel comes off, sometimes you can slide it out and reverse it, it might be black or white on the other side. In your photo the stove comes off as white, so at least it blends even though it is not a match. If the panel does not come off the dishwasher, how about some of that temporary wallpaper in a black and white check?

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  7. Brenda, it looks pretty good for just moving in! It's tough to figure out those small spaces and make your existing furniture work. You will do it! Love your fenced yard, so cute and perfect for you and the pups!! I really like your couch, where did you get it if I may ask? I bought one, but think it might be too big for my space and I'm thinking of trying to sell it and get another one, or not...LOL! Anyway, you have to just take your time and it will get done. I know you want it done asap but sometimes our bodies make us take more time then we would like too!
    hugs, Linda

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    Replies
    1. I bought it at a place called Sunshine Furniture here in Tulsa. Think it is Ashley. Not sure. I looked at a red one that I saw online and actually went there to look at, but it was humongous. Well over 100 inches long. This one was just a few more inches longer than the smallish couch I had. Probably about 80.

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  8. You'll figure it out! The patio has so many possibilities!

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    1. Yes it does. Can't wait to get the boxes out of there and start on it!

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  9. Brenda,
    I have a suggestion and please don't shoot me. Take everything you are unsure of outside on your patio and arrange everything you are sure of inside first. Then start bringing the stuff back in. I too have lived in small houses and had a back patio much like yours. The patio ended up being my favorite room in the house. Some of your furniture, if treated with laquer and stuff could work outside. I'm sure it will be great shortly.

    Why don't you call the landlord and tell them they promised you new appliances and you would like them to keep their word.

    Hugs,
    Valerie
    Cottage Making Mommy
    www.lovingmyheartandhome.blogspot.com

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    Replies
    1. Already talked to the landlord. It was the manager who promised it. She can't go above corporate, she said.

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  10. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  11. I suggest keeping the round coffee table. I remember how excited you were to get it and it didn't sell, so maybe you are meant to keep it? My suggestion to those who move is not to be too quick to give up things you love. At least not until all the possibilities are exhausted. What you don't think of today, you might think of next week. I also like Valerie's suggestion. Good luck!

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    1. Judy and I tried today to move the couch around. But she says the coffee table just doesn't look right either. I will still try to work with it. Yes, I love it. But the couch/chaise was a good idea because of my ankle and the dogs being able to be next to me. So that is a LOT of help that was a problem before.

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  12. Oh, I think it will look amazing! I, too, would keep the coffee table. If you turned the little bookcase that is at the end of the sofa with the back against the front wall I think it might give you a little more space for the table. The previous idea of taking things out to the patio and then bringing things in might be a wonderful idea. (Of course that means moving things--again!) Take a breath and relax a bit and let each day make things fall into place!

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    1. I've already scratched the floors some moving stuff outside. And I'm killing myself doing it. So I just can't drag more stuff outside. It's not that the coffee table doesn't fit. It just doesn't look right.

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    2. Waxman 4704095N 9-1/2-Inch by 5-3/4-Inch Reusable Oval EZ Sliders
      they really do work! I use them around my house.

      Delete
  13. Brenda,

    I'm with Valerie and a few other people, they promised you new appliances and you should talk to them about getting them. I purchased a couch with a chaise from La-Z-Boy and I can move it from the left or the right side depending where I put it in the room. We love it. I also have a round coffee table about the size of yours, at first I didn't think it looked right but now it's perfect. Take your time and don't push yourself too hard, you have more done than someone half of your age. It will look beautiful when you are done and that patio will be the envy of all of your neighbours.

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    1. Check your lease and see if it is written anywhere that they are giving you new appliances. It it's in the lease, you should be getting them. If it was only a verbal promise, you should still pursue it, but legally they don't have to if it is just for cosmetic's sake.

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    2. Unfortunately I can't move the chaise from one end to the other. I don't think $599 buys you that option!

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  14. Sometimes dishwashers like yours have extra panels in the door. The "kids" on YHL discovered they had that kind of dishwasher door not long ago. I'll see if I can find it on their blog and add a link. I remember having a DW with optional door panels at one time, but I do not remember how you access them. Probably with a screw driver.

    Blogless Peggy

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    1. Found it!

      http://www.younghouselove.com/2014/03/the-easiest-fastest-dishwasher-update-ever/

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    2. Thanks! Will go take a look. But I have some possibilities brewing in my head...

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  15. I know you will work your magic just as soon as things settle down for you! You are such an inspiration to the rest of us!

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    1. Well I guess going from a doctor's wife to living in a small blue bungalow to living in an even smaller patio home should teach me some lessons on decorating and I will share them with you. Just hope it is not circumstantial for you guys as it has been for me!

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  16. Well to me, your house just looks as if you just moved there recently. Not only did you move furniture but you also moved a small garden! Your computer is set up, you have books on shelves, your dishes are put away, you probably have your clothes in drawers...that's the basics and enough for a start. Moving is tiring...no one moves and has everything perfect right away...

    That couch looks wonderful and comfy. SIT on it a day or two doing not much else, is what I think! :) Then move out to the patio and sit there, then back to the couch :)
    It looks as if several comments have suggestions about the dishwasher ( who knew there were magnets like that ! : ) and others have the same opinion as I do....keep that round table :)
    It will all come together eventually, Brenda...just can't do it all in a day and when you are tired. My son's moving and I've been in and out there and am going back shortly and I don't expect much but chaos there for awhile ...just slowly coming together is all :)

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    1. When I was young I could literally have all the pictures on the wall inside of a week. I do a good bit of sitting. But then I stare at things that don't look right and it drives me nuts and I have to get up and at least stare at it for awhile, hoping it will morph into something that looks better.

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  17. I am glad you posted "before" pictures so we can appreciate what you are going through. Ok, my suggestions: I would paint the pantry bookshelves in the kitchen white, and put your pretties in there, and put the pantry items (cans, cereal boxes) behind closed kitchen cabinet doors (Maybe just don't remove as many doors or not at all). In a kitchen that small black might be too heavy and overpowering. I usually store my cookie sheets and things like that right in the stove. If you don't use the dishwasher store things in there, too. Since you are only cooking for one you could probably get rid of a lot of kitchen gadgets and utensils that you really don't use much. I would make the dining area a cute eating area with your dining table and chairs and coffee station. You will need a cozy area to share a cup of coffee with a friend/friends. As to the vertical blinds, I have them here in Florida where they are EVERYWHERE, and I hate them also, but they do serve the purpose. However, I hung a curtain rod and drape panels over the window and during the day I open and push to the side the verticals and drapes and you can't see the verticals under the drapes. At night I close everything up. Lots of sound absorbing and insulation. Here is where you could add a bit of color and pattern. Walmart and Target sell drapery panels and rods for very reasonable prices. The good thing is when you get rid of more stuff then you don't need as many pieces of furniture to hold everything. I like what you did in the bedroom with the bookshelves and the tv in the middle. I like to get wicker storage baskets at Walmart and Target and use them on bookshelves for tiny items - it looks a lot less cluttered and helps organize things. A dust ruffle on the bed would be a good way to hide underbed storage containers. Hanging some of your quilts behind the sofa and bed would add lots of color and pattern. I find with leather sofas (I have one) quilts and blankets tend to slip and slide around, so I only keep one in a basket next to the sofa for chilly days. I love your patio, lots of potential for sure. I hope you will grow some vines on the wooden fence and put Mr. Sun back up! As to your little tree, time to start pruning so it gets side branches, and repotting in a larger container. Cut several inches off the top leaving about half the leaves so it does not grow lanky. It is times like these that I just wish I could get in my car and drive to your house and move things around with you! Lots of work but so much fun! Have a Happy Easter Sunday.

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    1. I wish you could come help too. The problem is I have TOO much white furniture that just blends into the white walls. Judy is going to come up with something probably for the patio window just to hide those ugly verticals. But you're right, they do serve a purpose. I already got rid of a lot of kitchen stuff like pots and dishes and stuff. I don't want to put anything in the cabinets till I decide what I'm going to do with them. Right now they have ugly sticky yucky stuff on top of more yucky stuff that is shelf coverings. I took one off the other day and it took me 30 minutes and a great deal of effort.

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    2. If you're talking about plastic shelf liner--blow dryer! Warm that stuff up a little and it peels right off :)

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  18. You have lots of time to get things in order - love your kitchen and your patio. I think once you put some of your furniture on an angel and decide what you like it will all work out. Rest, put your feet up and have a cup of coffee. You should be very proud of yourself, you make the move.

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    1. Meant to say up above, yes, the colorful sun will go up but am not to that point yet. Still trying to figure where I want things before I put nail holes in old wood. The one decent thing about the small dining area is the patio area beyond it. Had lunch outside.

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    2. You could sit at your desk, and envision what things you wAnt to see from there..such as Mr. Sun.

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  19. I actually like the round coffee table and if it were me ~ I would keep it. I like Lana's idea of hanging a quilt over the sofa. I think that will warm and cozy up the room as only quilts can. My biggest suggestion is to let things just hang out for a bit. My experience has always been to wait a bit with a new space. Too often I have the notion of recreating the arrangement I had in the old place. That does not always work. Give it a few days and suddenly your creativity will reign and things will just start to fall into place. I hope the pups are adapting. It took Bentley a few weeks to really start to feel at home in his new yard. When we first moved here he would come inside and give me a look that seemed to say "when are we going back home to Idaho mama?"

    Big Hugs,
    Susan and Bentley

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    Replies
    1. I have a quilt on the back of the sofa. Do you mean over the sofa? I think I'm putting my old window with vintage images above it. And I think the room is too busy and small for a gallery wall. Will probably put the same quilt above the buffet I had before. The one some woman called Country Woman to inquire about, and then they called me, to ask what the pattern was!

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  20. Oh, Brenda, we've been in our house almost a decade and I'm still trying to figure it all out! I, too, like the round coffee table with your linear sofa/chaise. Once you've lived there a while, it will start to make more sense, and you'll figure out what to keep and what to get rid of. Your patio space is going to be heavenly when your potted plants start blooming! When you get overwhelmed inside, just take the pupsters and head outside to your little sanctuary. :)

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    Replies
    1. It would drive me stark raving mad to be somewhere more than a month and not have things figured out. I'm very anal that way. Wish my body was up to the task!

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  21. Thanks for inviting us in and giving the guided tour! I completely understand why it gives you hives to have things unsettled (I'm the same way), but think you have already done so much. Your ideas will come when your batteries are recharged more. When you're worn out, the creativity just isn't going to flow like usual. In the photos, the stove doesn't look a different color. Good suggestions from the others that said there may be another panel in the dishwasher. I don't have one, so I didn't have a clue about that. That being a big square front, would be the easy one to find a solution for and I have total confidence in you. So great to see your patio. It does have wonderful possibilities and I know you will turn it in to a haven in no time. Fun to see little Charlie on patrol. He'll have the kitties alerted to who's boss in no time!
    It will take a little time, but you will have your personal stamp put on your new place very soon. Big hug to you!

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    1. I let the dogs out at night and hear a skirmish between cats and dogs. Just hope the pupsters don't get scratched.

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  22. I am glad you posted "before" pictures so we can appreciate what you are going through. Ok, my suggestions: I would paint the pantry bookshelves in the kitchen white, and put your pretties in there, and put the pantry items (cans, cereal boxes) behind closed kitchen cabinet doors (Maybe just don't remove as many doors or not at all). In a kitchen that small black might be too heavy and overpowering. I usually store my cookie sheets and things like that right in the stove. If you don't use the dishwasher store things in there, too. Since you are only cooking for one you could probably get rid of a lot of kitchen gadgets and utensils that you really don't use much. I would make the dining area a cute eating area with your dining table and chairs and coffee station. You will need a cozy area to share a cup of coffee with a friend/friends. As to the vertical blinds, I have them here in Florida where they are EVERYWHERE, and I hate them also, but they do serve the purpose. However, I hung a curtain rod and drape panels over the window and during the day I open and push to the side the verticals and drapes and you can't see the verticals under the drapes. At night I close everything up. Lots of sound absorbing and insulation. Here is where you could add a bit of color and pattern. Walmart and Target sell drapery panels and rods for very reasonable prices. The good thing is when you get rid of more stuff then you don't need as many pieces of furniture to hold everything. I like what you did in the bedroom with the bookshelves and the tv in the middle. I like to get wicker storage baskets at Walmart and Target and use them on bookshelves for tiny items - it looks a lot less cluttered and helps organize things. A dust ruffle on the bed would be a good way to hide underbed storage containers. Hanging some of your quilts behind the sofa and bed would add lots of color and pattern. I find with leather sofas (I have one) quilts and blankets tend to slip and slide around, so I only keep one in a basket next to the sofa for chilly days. I love your patio, lots of potential for sure. I hope you will grow some vines on the wooden fence and put Mr. Sun back up! As to your little tree, time to start pruning so it gets side branches, and repotting in a larger container. Cut several inches off the top leaving about half the leaves so it does not grow lanky. It is times like these that I just wish I could get in my car and drive to your house and move things around with you! Lots of work but so much fun! Have a Happy Easter Sunday.

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    Replies
    1. The more I look at your rooms, the more ideas I get. I would get rid of the small bookshelf to the left of the sofa and put your decopauged end table there instead with a lamp on top. If there is room you could put the round coffee table under the living room window with the wicker chair to the left of it. Put a lamp on the table with some magazines and books. It would be like a low end table. If there is room put a small chair on the other side of the round table. In the dining room I would lose the two red bookshelves/cabinets and just stick with the coffee station buffet. OR put the tall red cabinet in the kitchen and get rid of the black bookshelves. It's like a puzzle, when you move one piece you have to move a bunch of others around as well, but I think this is so much fun! I love the black buffet/sideboard in the livingroom, it is a focal piece and you could hang a bunch of paintings/pictures on that wall over it. Again I love that yellow and white lamp and yellow and black go great together.

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    2. I keep thinking things will look better if I do this or that, and then I move them and see that I am wrong.

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    3. Trial and Error, Trial and Error until suddenly it works!

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  23. Your yard is charming. I like the contrast of the round, coffee table, it's age and shape, against the more modern sofa. Is there enough room to get by? Is your dishwasher magnetic? They make panels for dishwashers in white that are magnets. http://www.applianceart.com/White_Custom_Dishwasher_Covers_Panel_p/10004-7.htm The other thought I had was vinyl decals.

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    1. It's just that for some reason, and Judy agrees, the round coffee table does not look right with the design/style/shape of the sofa. Will wait awhile and see if it gels somehow though.

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    2. Oh, and the patio is just cluttered now. But at some point it WILL be charming!

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  24. Beautiful styling with the sunflower picture! Very nice, Brenda.

    I'm amazed at how much you have gotten done in such a short amount of time! You've accomplished much. Unfortunately, I have nothing new to add to the wonderful suggestions you've already received.

    I really enjoyed visiting your new home. Thanks so much for the tour. In time, it will look fabulous! You have a gift for creating a snugly warm and comfortable haven.

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    Replies
    1. Well, I dragged the potting bench outside. There was not an inch to move anything with it in here. Judy said just take it out and see if things look better. They do. Now don't know where I'll put your beautiful sunflower art piece! But don't worry! I will!
      Brenda

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    2. Thank you, Brenda!

      Take it easy tomorrow. Please pace yourself so you don't over do it. Good luck!

      Thinking of you...
      Gayle

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    3. I don't think "pacing" is in my vocabulary...

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  25. I think it is a shame they didn't give you the new appliances as promised. I find it hard to be assertive, but I think in this case I would be making a bit of a noise. You sound like you are feeling a bit overwhelmed and exhausted by everything at the moment, which is perfectly understandable! You will probably be more inspired after you have had a big rest. One day you will look back and say "Wow, how did I ever do all that!"
    Your garden is going to be beautiful. I think your mystery tree in the pot looks like it started from an acorn. Maybe you could bonsai it?!
    Take a day or two off and do some garden planning and daydreaming! The dogs and your foot will love you for it!

    Kathy

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    Replies
    1. I was assertive. It didn't work. As Judy said, once you've moved in, it's a moot point.

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  26. looks like that yard/patio is gonna be a stunner! so much potential for a garden girl like yourself. nice start to making the place look adorable like you do. could you turn your sofa sideways looking out the window to cut the showroom look as you called it? like divide living & dining with sofa or something else cute so everything is off the walls? just a thot. you rest now! pam in texas

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    1. Not enough room. We tried to angle it in the corner. Not enough room.

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  27. I'm loving your outdoor area, this is going to be the jewel you have living here. As far a your kitchen i really like it, even though small it is open. How about using the bead board wallpaper on the cabinets and the dishwasher (attached with starch and easy to remove) it would marry everything together and add charm. I love you new living room furniture and see you pawkids are liking it too. I would add one of your charming quilts to the back to soften up a bit. I like the round of the table in front of couch, to me it "softens" up the area, a square table would to me lend to much of a maculine look. I think I would like the round table with a cute coverlet. I do believe Brenda with you talent you'll having it look great in no time.

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    Replies
    1. The couch is really great. I would have to use disposable wallpaper, as per the lease. Been looking at it, but it's pretty expensive. Maybe have to go the route of covering something and fitting it inside. Not sure yet. I will definitely try something over the table and see if it makes a difference. I have a red/white quilt over the back of the couch.

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    2. If you apply it with starch it's easy to remove, doesn't "adhere" just stays up. My Mom hung "fabric" to the wall with starch. You have great fabric how about adding with starch to cabinets fronts?

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  28. do they sell pain for appliances? if so you could paint the dishwasher white! I do not know what they have as I have never done it - just an idea. for me I would downsize a lot for a small place as I do not like clutter - but you will decide after you have been there a couple weeks - really no rush - just do a some each day and it will come to you of what you want.

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    1. that should read "paint" not "pain" lol

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    2. Been checking into that. Have to see if there's a strong scent due to my asthma.

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  29. Could you put the sofa in front of the window like your last place?

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    Replies
    1. There would be no room for my computer at the end because the space is too small. Already thought of that. And that's where I work. Have to have a spot to put my cup of coffee and computer.

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  30. Oh I loved seeing your space before you get it all settled! That's part of the fun of moving - seeing the unfinished space and thinking about the possibilities. As to the appliances, are these the "new" appliances they promised you? If not I would speak to management about them. In the mean time there are appliance paints and other things you can use for the dishwasher. The stove looks like a light beige and in a photo I don't find it stands out at all. I do think you might want to sell the coffee table unless you can use it outside maybe (use exterior paint on it)? I have an L shaped sofa in my tv room and use a small rectangular ottoman as a coffee table.

    LOVE the patio area! I know you're going to do magical things with that space.

    I think you may have to get rid of some more furniture. Do they have a little storage space for you at all? I wouldn't pay to store stuff, but if it's free I would use it - if not downsize some more.

    Take your time. Don't feel everything has to come together right a way. Maybe work on one area at a time. Enjoy the process and try not to stress!

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    1. No storage, which is why I only brought one little Xmas tree and sold the other and all the ornaments that went with it. I have already hassled the management, and she'd under duress from the corporate office, so don't want to get her in trouble. It isn't her fault. The insides of the cabinets are stained, but some painter got white paint on it trying to paint the front. Not sure what I'm going to do there, because I want some cabinets with the doors off.

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    2. Maybe contact paper in the cabinets?????

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    3. You could even lay the paper on the shelves, if you can't "glue" it down.....

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  31. How about a magnetic panel for the dishwasher or I saw someone put white beadboard on theirs, it looked really nice. With the microwave, maybe you could save up for a microwave vent hood combo to mount above the stove. There's always appliance paint I used it once and it works great! Once you get all your colorful decor in place it's going to look adorable, go slow and stay safe with the lifting etc..

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    1. Did the appliance paint have strong fumes? I really like my red microwave, though yes, it does take up space.

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  32. I have no advice other than stop! Take a breath! Sit down with your pups and relax! Just take that week or two that it takes for the "new" to wear off.....let your mind wander pinterest etc.... till an idea hits you! Love to you and good luck!!!!!

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    1. I work on my blog, look on Pinterest, get up and look and try things, sit down and rest. And of course I then start all over again. A week or two of just looking at stuff not in its place? My personality would not be able to handle that!

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    2. Sorry.....then I have no advice.....sounds like you are doing the best you can.....just be kind to yourself

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  33. I, too, am so glad to get to see the "before" pictures ... before you make it a "cozy little home" as we all know you will do, in time. I vote to keep the round table as well. It's just too cute! We, your virtual friends, are cheering you on and praying for your safety as you pull, push, and drag things around. Enjoy the process of creating each little vignette. We can be patient to see it evolve, room by room. God Bless!

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    1. I meant to get photos before the furniture came for you all. But missed the mark on that. So this was the next best thing. I appreciate all your suggestions! Yes, I shall savor each new creation in my new home.

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  34. The one thing that jumps out at me is the chaise is in the middle of your floor area. Can the sofa go on the opposite wall so the chaise would be by the window? I think your coffee table would more likely fit there, too. (I suspect you're going to tell me you have a door in that wall.)

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    1. It's right up to where the door opens there. Yes, thought of that. But hate furniture that you open the door and practically (and sometimes do), stumble over just to get inside.

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  35. GOTTA keep the round table. Too great of a find. It is all gonna be beautiful. Brenda you can do it and it is all yours!

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  36. I find sometimes it just takes time to make a place yours. My only advice he sit in the areas and think about what works in each area sometimes it takes a few times of changing it till it works. This probably has not been helpful but good luck with making your home yours. Love the story about your friends son following the tree on your move.
    Denise

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    1. I do. I sit in one spot, look around. Testing the waters. Looking from different angles. The problem is the space is so narrow in places.

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  37. Well, I enjoyed your 'before' photos and will enjoy seeing and reading about the transformation. It's always lovely to go from the cringeworthy shots of home to the finished product no matter how long it takes. I often look back on a cottage I used to own from its crumbling beginnings to the transformation which took seven years, and worth every single moment to make it home. It's horrid when you start but as things fall together the satisfaction is priceless. I vote to keep the round table, maybe a lick of paint to match whatever you decide to do in the living room. Enjoy xx

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    1. I have considered painting the table. The wood is just so beautiful! Time will tell I guess.

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  38. Congrats on getting moved Brenda! Your new place looks quite lovely, and I cannot wait to see it evolve into the gorgeous home and garden you are sure to create. Wishing all the very best in this new and exciting chapter of your life! Kali x

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  39. Hi,
    Your new little place is cute! I have no doubt it will be wonderful when you get it all fixed up. My suggestion is to do one small section at a time. Maybe sit with it for a few days, and get a feel for your new place.
    Your patio is great! It has such possibility! You'll have it all fixed up and beautiful in no time at all. I wish you all the best!
    Sincerely,
    Michelle
    Moving is stressful. Maybe just take a couple days to just breath, and sit with it..let it speak to you. :)

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    1. Yes, the patio is the jewel here for sure.

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  40. Could you use a spring tension rod and some textile(s) in front of the vertical blinds? Appliances don't looks that mismatched in your photos. Adhesive backed vinyl (contact paper) comes in stainless steel & blackboard... :)

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    1. Whatever I use on the appliances, etc., has to be easily removable per the lease rules. Judy is going to be helping me think up how to hide the vertical blinds. Yes, they're very ugly. Don't know who thought those things up.

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  41. Another possibility for your dishwasher is to make your own cover. You could get some colorful oil cloth and back it with something to make it stiff, then add magnets. Possibly a red gingham oil cloth. It has so many uses and all you have to do it cut it to the shape you want.

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    1. Great idea! Oil cloth fixes a lot of things.

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  42. Such a lovely space with so much potential. Have you tried your sofa the other direction? Having it stick out from the wall at a 90 degree angle? You could run bookcases along behind it then. Those would face your dining area. There might be more room for the round coffee table. You could throw something fabric over that, the black and brown seem jarring together. I use those furniture slider feet under stuff when I need to move stuff around in a room. Helps protect the floors. The patio will be lovely, you have so much creativity. You can create all sorts of mini room spaces out there. Don't let your need to have it all done, (same thing happens to me) take away the fun of getting it there.

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    1. I agree. The black and brown seem jarring together. I've tried the couch in about every configuration. It's the doors that give me trouble anyplace but where it is.

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  43. Hi Brenda, lot's of good suggestions posted. I might add you can use the dishwasher for storage. Maybe you can put some kind of board on top of each rack or just store your glasses and plates in there. Any furniture you don't use inside can be water proofed and used outside and put good covers over them in the winter. I love those bookcases in your bedroom...may I ask where you got those? All in good time. Thanks for sharing you home. Take it easy girly!

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    1. I have had the bookcases a long time. Think I bought them from one of those Furniture Row type places. I don't even use the dishwasher, so might do that.

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  44. Once you find the right spot for the stuff you know you're keeping you will get in a groove and make the rest look great, but overwhelming for sure once it's all out of the boxes!

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    1. And it rained all night long and those boxes outside are wet! Don't know how I'm going to get them out of here!

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    2. When I moved several months ago my garage was full of cardboard boxes. Most I ran to the recycle center in my car. Maybe your town has one not too far away. Otherwise, just tear or cut them up into little pieces and throw out in the garbage. I did that too. It took a while, but eventually they were all gone.

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  45. To move furniture you need to get some EZ Moves® Furniture Moving System
    http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/product/ez-moves-reg-furniture-moving-system/1018312662
    They really do work.

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    1. Great idea. Will check into that. So far the floors are holding up well. They are some sort of vinyl material.

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  46. I know it's not in your budget now, and there may be a reason you like the desktop, but if sometime in the future you can get a laptop, you could save all that space a computer table takes up. I know we love not having one in our small house. Also, I agree with those who suggest not getting rid of anything right now. Inspiration comes as you live with it. As for the dishwasher, I bet you can do some magic that you can attach to it that you will love. You have said you don't use it that much, so it wouldn't even have to be sturdy. One last suggestion, if you ever move again, get whatever you want in writing. If the manager tells you something, add it to the lease.

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    1. I agree. But she told me before I signed the lease the corporate office was not going to allow new appliances because they'd already spent so much money on roofing and big stuff. I actually walked in for the first time and saw the mismatched appliances, and let me tell you, I was down at the office pretty quick asking what happened. I do have a laptop, but I do all my photos on the desktop. It's just what I've always done and that's where I can see them the best and edit.

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  47. I wish you could take the dishwasher out and put in a clothes washer. If the coffee table doesn't work re home it. You have a good start. It will come together. Less is best. Sounds like we all want to see the quilts on the wall again. Love the new sofa. Hugs

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    1. Yes, there are going to be quilts on the wall here to soften things up. Too much stuff in here already, I think, for a gallery wall. I would love to take the dishwasher out, but they won't allow the clothes washer no matter what. They say if they let me do it, they'd have to let everyone else do it. They recently checked into the price of having each unit get plumbing for w/d, and apparently it was very high. Have to tear out the walls. They're spending their money on a security gate. So guess that's important as well.

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  48. Brenda, my advice is "Take all the time you need". You will figure out what you want and what will not work. I know you know the old saying, "Rome wasn't built in a day"! You need time to adjust to the downsize. After that you will know what you want to do. I know that when you figure it all out, you will have a beautiful apt. Just breathe! Love you!

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    1. Thanks for your support, Julie! No, Rome was certainly not built in a day. But I was not one of the engineers, and I'm impatient. My ankle makes me slow down though.

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  49. Brenda, it's really nice, and you know what, it's going to be a fresh new start. I love that garden, it's about 3 times what I had for almost 2 decades in my little condo, just imagine what you can do with it. It will work out in the end, it's nice, and it's bright, and it's a new to you place, with good memories that you will be making.

    Home tweet home.

    Jen

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    1. Speaking of tweets, I've seen cardinals out there. Going to get a bird feeder and draw in more so I can just sit back in one of the comfy outdoor chairs with my camera and click away!

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  50. Brenda, Thanks so much for sharing your "before" pictures. I know you will make this home as beautiful and creative as all your others! Can't wait to see how you use your beautiful colors & quilts in this space. We moved into a patio apartment Feb. 14 & are still arranging and re-arranging things. As Julie said take all the time you need. You are an inspiration to so many people! Wishing you joy.

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    1. What is the size of yours? Do you like it?

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    2. Sorry I took so long to reply. Had to run an errand. Our unit is a little bigger than yours. Probably more like 875-900 square feet. The living room/dining room area is long and narrow but the ceiling is high and that makes it look larger. We have a sliding glass door out to the patio that is enclosed by a privacy fence. We do like living here. It is nice to be all on one floor. Our last home was a small little rowhouse with narrow windy stairs. I was always fearful because the stair treds were so narrow. Moving here meant we had to sell and give away some furniture. So we are still working out the best arrangement of furniture that we still have. I do feel more relaxed because it's so much easier to take care of this place. I struggled with where to put the book shelves and am still "tweeking" that. :) All in all I do like it and I think you will like your new place too! All the best, Sarah

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    3. Already I can tell having less space (which yes, means less cleaning) is going to work well for me. The fact that the patio is so large, probably the largest here, was a HUGE plus for me. For you all know how much outdoor rooms/gardening mean to me. The other house was just one big yard and overwhelming.

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  51. I believe you mentioned there was no electrical outlet on you patio. It is very inexpensive to have one installed--the electrician will use a source from inside and just connect to it directly opposite it outside. It will be weather-worthy and your whimsical fountain can be a wonderful sorce of sight and sound. Also a small storage shed for your patio like from rubber made might be a good purchase. They are not too expensive or you might check Craig's List. Get things semi the way you want and then tweet it as the spirit moves you and think about how wonderful and blessed we are to live in America where all these options are not only possible but doable. You are so talented and it will be cozy and lovely once again.

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    1. I will certainly check into that. For I was expecting at least one outlet out there. I was afraid it would be really expensive. And I'll have to ask management of course. Thanks for the tip!

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  52. Hi Brenda, your new home is going to be darling when you get it all decorated. I am sure the visions will come to you each new day. I did get a dishwasher mural for mine and it made all the difference. Plus they are an inexpensive fix. I found mine at Collections Etc. on line for under 15 dollars. Are you allowed to paint here? For the window doorwall, maybe soft sheers that pull open easily to soften the long blinds yet let the light in, with a topper of sorts high above. You yard is a wonderful space and does have great bones to work with.
    Don't get rid of the round coffee table. You can always use it in a corner too like an oversized end table, if it will fit the space. Also you could coat it with outdoor varnish and add it to you garden space. Oh another idea for the end table is to layer another piece of furniture on top of it in a corner. Don't forget to go up when you have little spaces.
    Thanks for sharing your journey moving and your before pics. You are an inspiration to all. Wishing you many blessings in your new home!
    Happy Monday!!
    Hugs

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    1. You have some excellent ideas, my friend! I was just out running errands and was at Target. I looked at curtains, but didn't think of sheers. At Lowes I looked at those natural blinds that I have used outdoors. But I was just too overwhelmed with all the other stuff to do to make a decision. So I bought an ironing board and computer monitor cleaner! Rained the whole time I was out.

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  53. I live in a tiny rental, & I loved what you did with your old place. Looking forward to see the transformation here! It may look daunting now, but you will get there. I love your private yard space!

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    1. I'm looking forward to seeing what I can come up with. This one will be decorated mainly in quilts and softness, making it a cozy retreat.

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  54. Brenda, it will all come together after a bit of pondering. I wouldn't get rid of the round table yet. Give it 45 days or so before you consider it. It was such a great find, and once you live in your place, and get used to the flow of it, you may be surprised with what changes you will make in just the first few months. It is hard to do, but giving the place a chance to tell YOU what it needs for you to live happily there will come in time. You may rearrange things for quite some time, but it is a work in progress. You really can't give up any of the book cases as they are truly your *storage unit*, that just happen to be right IN your apartment. When my Mom moved into a small apt. she used the dishwasher as storage for all pots and pans and all of her other serving pieces, etc. She only kept a few plates, bowls and cups and mugs in her cupboard that she used every day. The rest she stored in the dishwasher. That way she could use the other cupboards for food and cleaning supplies keeping them behind closed doors. With all of the bookcases, to also open the cupboards up might be too much visually, unless you only take off the doors on the one cupboard you use for all of your every day dishes. The link someone gave you to Young House Love,,,, if you look at their site, they recently DID paint their fridge. She was pregnant at the time, so they had to be VERY careful of what paint they used, and it looks really nice. They are happy with it. Did you ever think of a dust ruffle for your bed so you can use the area under the bed for storage? (you could certainly use it for storage withOUT a dust ruffle, too!) I know how hard it is to "wait" for things, but I really do believe you have to live with a space for a while before you really know how you will use it.... like so many things, the way we automatically THINK it should be isn't always the way it turns out is the best after all. I think as the first couple of weeks go by, and you, the pups, and the new apartment live together, it will all come into focus. It certainly is on its way to becoming your cozy little home!!

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    1. I did this morning find a lady working in Lowes who helped me pick out a cheap drill that would help me get the screws out of the kitchen cabinet doors. So if I don't like them off, I can certainly put them back on. But I do like to arrange "pretties in cabinet spaces.

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  55. Oh I know how much you want to get your house in order! It will happen. It may not be overnight, but it will happen. Just have faith. I would concentrate on making your home function properly first and then let your creative juices flow to make the functional space look pretty. I would take what doesn't work out of the room and whatever is left over, donate or sell. You might have money then to buy something that WILL work better for you. You could always hang draperies above the door to hide those vertical blinds too (or in place of if it is allowed).

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    1. Judy is trying to come up with something for those patio doors. She's the seamstress and the interior designer!

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  56. So glad your move went okay! Your new space is just a little smaller than ours. I am looking forward to your ideas for it and am enjoying your posts on small spaces. Take it slow and enjoy! ( I am a little on the OCD side, so I couldn't and don't take it slow much, but hope you can.) Best wishes to you and the pups!

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    1. I share that with you, the OCD that makes it hard to just sit. But my ankle gives me no choice, so I sit and look around and tweak something and sit down and look some more!

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  57. I have lived in many small apartments when I was younger, and never had a washer or dryer in them. I found since it was only me alone I only had to use the laundromat once every two weeks. In between I hand washed small items in the bathroom sink. I had one of those expandable portable drying racks and put it on the patio to dry the clothes. Sheets and towels lasted two weeks as well, just me drying off my clean self after a shower, they don't get that dirty. I never used the dishwasher since it ruins vintage china and bakelite, so the dishwasher was used for pots and pans as was previously stated by someone else. I had a vintage iron bed which had a dust ruffle, so I got some of those clear plastic underbed storage containers with snap on lids and used them to store paper towels, toilet paper, (I stock up on sales), christmas stuff, and out of season clothes. I keep my flour, ground flax, oatmeal, etc. in air-tight containers in the refrigerator. I used to have a set of dishes for every holiday, one for Thanksgiving, one for Christmas, one for everyday, one for outdoors. But since my children are grown and I don't entertain much, I donated and gave away most of my china and pitchers, collections, etc. Now I only have what I use all the time. Same with pots, pans, casserole dishes, etc. I don't cook that much so I no longer need all the appliances and heavy pots that I can hardly lift anymore. I think your red cupboard that is in your dining room would look great in your kitchen for pantry storage, just like the old hoosiers used to. Do you have one or two of the black bookshelves that are now in the kitchen. Would they fit on either side of the black buffet in the living room? Well, I have tried to think of everything, it is not the same as actually being there and able to get a better feel for the perception of the space dimensions. I hope I have been of some help. With your expert decorating skill I know you will get it done beautifully.

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    1. I agree about the dishes...I have a non stick 12" frying pan, and a small one(sandwich size)...a big pot to boil pasta/make soup...one quart size sauce pan and a lid....a 9"by 13" pyrex and a 9" by 9" pyrex baking dish, both of which I use for casseroles and cakes/brownies. That is all the cooking pans I use....just don't need them....I have to keep the soup pot in the bedroom closet....no room.....never thought I could down size as much as I have....

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    2. No, the black shelves would not fit on either wide of the black buffet. I considered getting one of those open steel pantry type shelf things on rollers that restaurants use. Still thinking about it. But I already had the black shelves, so will use them for now.

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  58. That red coffee table is adorable. I would set it outside with a couple of chairs (conversation area/coffee area). I would put everything you don't want on Craigslist. Just make sure when people come over to see items that you and someone else are present. (Do not have people come over if you are alone). That patio is to die for!!! The space is premuim! I would use red checker board contact paper and cover your dishwasher with it. (budget friendly) I love your yellow lampshade. Your place is going to be awesome...these things take time. The Sistine Chapel's ceiling was not painted in a day. And stop worrying about the pictures. This is a process in which your readers will help sort some things out. What are friends for? It took me five hours to put together a shelf from Bed, Bath and fricking Beyond! It was so pricey, yet it was tall and narrow and it fit right into a tiny space in my bathroom. I hate putting things together. It has been a year and it has not fallen over. Hugs.

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    1. I desperately need storage in the bathroom. Like one of those over the toilet shelves. There is a mirror that extends over the toilet. But that wouldn't matter. I did buy a expandable shower rod this morning at Lowes, and am hoping I can put it in the middle of the shower high up and hang clothes. Hoping it works!

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  59. I look forward to seeing you work your magic, Brenda! It took me about 2 years to feel really SETTLED in my little house, so I empathize with you having to move again. Go easy on yourself, there's no deadline. Sending you some virtual mojo for getting everything sorted! :-) Hali

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    1. Thanks, I need it! I only had to have the lawn mowed at the other house once. Won't have to worry about that here.

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  60. I would ask management to pull out the dishwasher. Hopefully they'd cooperate. I'd then put shelving or even drawers in the open space, something from Wally world might be sufficient. Then I'd hide it all behind a curtain held in place with a tension rod. In a small space, storage would be more important to me than a dishwasher, especially if I were living solo. Just a thought.

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    1. I don't know too many apartment managements that would allow that

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    2. I don't think they will. Although they did put a tall toilet in for me (that I purchased) and a storm door (that I purchased) and a hand-held shower nozzle (that I purchased). For those things were important to me. The maintenance man could not figure out the storm door, so had to pay a door guy to finish putting it up.

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  61. Someone mentioned oilcloth...I know that on Cherry Hill Cottage Blog, she used it to cover a table..using tacks underneath I think. Maybe the coffee table could be covered in that for now with a black and white, or red and white design.

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    1. I use checked oil cloth a lot. In fact I just took it off my red and white kitchen table. Used staples underneath. Planning to use some outside to cover the wood tables.

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  62. Brenda, I know you and Judy are there in person, so have a better feel for spacial stuff, however so many, many people have given that gorgeous coffee table a vote of confidence, and love the circular softening of the space it shares with your absolutely stunning couch. I think two chairs angled in front of the window, sharing the coffee table with the couch, makes a wonderful conversational group, and a place for actual coffee cups on the coffee table! It's just so unique and satisfying to see, that table. Pride of place it takes. And as many stated, maybe meant to be given it refused to leave your possession in a sale.Chin up sweet Brenda. For the first time in a long time, you're calling the shots for you and your pups. This is YOUR home. Nobody elses. No family member can decide if you fit/belong in it any more. Wiggle your toes in it, like cool grass on a hot day. This is your very own "tiny house". I don't even mind your quirky appliances. Sometimes imperfection is serendipity. It's certainly overrated. Rooting for you in Michigan,,,,,Marcia

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    1. I wanted to put two chairs in front of the window, but it's a really tight fit. As it is, the one that is there is very close to the front door. I love that coffee table. I will try to work it in somehow. Right now I have the other wicker chair at the other end of the black buffet.

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  63. Looking at the pics, it seems to me that the round table looks odd because of all the "square" angles in the room....couch/ottoman, bookshelves...etc.... so you need something to :trick the eye"...sadly, not by strong suit.....maybe a table cloth over the round table might help???? I just wish I had the answer! lol....

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    1. duh...not MY strong suit....

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    2. I am going to try that. That's why I bought an ironing board this morning, because I washed my linens before I left. I had a little table top ironing board, but it wasn't usually sufficient when ironing linens that were long. So I let Judy sell it.

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  64. It helps to live in a space for awhile to get a feel for what works and what doesn't. But I know when you have too much stuff it doesn't feel good. If you could at least make a little corner of 'extras'...maybe you could get other areas working well. I would start with the bedroom. It has to be uncluttered and restful. I think it looks like a nice place, Brenda. I know you'll enjoy it....don't try to get it all done this week! Sweet hugs!

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  65. This place was built in the sixties, so does not have the vintage touches the other house had. No fireplace, though I never used it. But I loved the mantel. I have gotten the bedroom fairly straightened out. Mostly just need to get the shelves in there in order.

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  66. Morning glories! The seeds are inexpensive and come in all colors........oh, maybe some Moonflowers for the nighttime!

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    1. I brought some morning glories that were just about an inch tall that reseeded from the flowers last year. I do love moon flowers, but never have had much luck. Maybe I'll try them again this year.

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  67. It has been fun reading everyone's suggestions! I have a sofa like yours, and I have a large round coffee table, too. It does take up a lot of room, so sometimes I wish I hadn't purchased it, but it came from the RoomStore, as a packaged set. That being said, it is the same style as the sofa. I think maybe the vintage oak is part of what is bothering you and Judy. Is there any way you could remove the top and put it on a taller base from another table and use it as a dining table? Just brainstorming here. In a small space you have to make the most of the vertical space, was wondering if you could stack the little black bookcase on top of the black buffet, or the little red bookcase on top of the coffee station, or one little bookcase on top of the other. Love the bedroom arrangement, I think you will wake up happy each morning to look at your beloved books and pretties. Speaking of Tina at Cherry Hill Cottage, I remember her making over her dishwasher with plastic panels from Lowe's that look like tin ceiling tiles. Maybe you could apply that or some foamboard with your decoupage on it with Command removable adhesive strips. Looking forward to following as your ideas unfold!

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  68. PS For easy bathroom storage, drawstring bags on hooks can organize lots of things. You can stitch them up from fabric remnants or tea towels, or buy the white mesh ones like you use to wash delicates if you prefer to see what is in the bag.

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  69. I'm smiling because I know you already have gone over many of the suggestions in your mind already! But some are really great. Have you ever heard of appliance paint? You might try that on the pieces you don't like. Just ventilate well while you are doing it and then maybe get out of the house for the day.

    I think the reason everyone likes the round coffee table is because it's a natural choice for the boxy shape of the sofa/chaise. But you really seem to despise it...can it be converted to use on your patio with some plants?

    In my rather small house I use the city philosophy, build UP! Shelves, tall cabinets, stacks...anything to draw the eye up. It makes a room look larger and gives you all sorts of storage.

    You need some recovery time...you have been on a frenetic high since you found your new home and now things are slowing and bits of reality are peeking in. Don't let it get you down. Tackle what you can when you feel like it. Get your cozy spaces done first so you can have that routine in your life. :)

    XO,
    Jane

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    1. I love cozy small spaces. Just me and the pupsters in our little abode.

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  70. I think the round table would fit in a corner easier. It adds character and stability. Keep it.

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  71. I am not worried about anything the little place and patio will look like a doll house in no time.

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    1. I've got to get things situated here so I can get outside. I ordered a lightweight hose and sprayer from Gardeners Supply and am waiting for it to come.

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  72. Oh and get out your decoupage for the dishwasher!

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  73. I think the new place is adorable! Be careful with the appliance paint; it is not for stoves because of the heat. I looked into it once. I have a couple of questions. Are your floors hardwood and will they allow you to paint the walls? LOVE, LOVE, LOVE that back patio. SO much potential. The ideas/answers will come to you when you least expect them. Take care :-)

    Cate <><

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    1. The floors are not hardwood. They are vinyl laminate. No, they don't want the walls painted. So I will be using quilts to give them color.

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  74. Dear Brenda......I think your new place looks light and bright and has lots of potential......in time I am sure you will create a sweet home here that you will love, using your practical and creative talents. Painting furniture sounds fun to me ......it is something I love to do. And having that wonderful outdoor space will be like an extra room to design and enjoy.
    Take care and do a little at a time.
    Helen xox

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    1. I'm not a good painter. I make a mess. But today I have my mojo on and have managed to get some decorating done.

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  75. Hi Brenda!
    Your new place looks great! New house-New Beginnings! as for the tree....it looks like an oak! please keep it, it represents you - tough, don't look back, eye on the horizon type gal! determined to make the trip no matter what your little tree survived! its a room-mate! enjoy!

    Lois@pineridgehills.com

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    1. Yes, the little tree seemed quite determined to come with me. So it is a keeper. Anything that tenacious deserves it.

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  76. Hi Brenda. Over 160 comments shows that posting your "just moved in" photos was a good idea. We all can relate to the stress and chaos that comes with a move, and we probably are comforted to know we are not the only ones who go through it -- even expert decorators such as yourself have to struggle through some challenging moments! It seems like the mismatched appliances and what to do about the coffee table are two themes in this post. I hope you can come up with a satisfying solution to the appliance colors that does not involve requesting management to replace them. The reason I say that is because, many people, in their own homes or in rentals, do not have the money or the cooperation of a landlord to replace appliances due to the color. They have to figure out how to deal with it, and this would be a great opportunity for you to show a creative and possibly frugal solution. Or solutions -- you might try something, and if you don't love it, you can try something else later. As for the coffee table, I think the table is in need of some sort of oomph to help it hold its own. I was looking at the photos in your April 19 post, and in the seventh photo, there is a round table used as a coffee table that has casters on the bottom, and an upholstered top. If you added casters to your table, it would lift it up a few inches and that would help it hold its own a bit with the couch. Also, have you ever seen seat cushions that go on bar stools, that are like a little cushion with an elasticized edging that fits down over the seat? Maybe your seamstress wizard friend Judy could make such a padded cushion for the top of the coffee table, that would fit snugly over it. That could add some height, and also add some color and texture to the room. Plus, such a topper would be removable, in case you wanted to go back to the wooden top, or put a seasonal tablecloth on, or whatever. Maybe none of those ideas seems good, but, I bet you'll come up with something good.

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    1. Perhaps you are right. A little height might help the table. Will ask expert decorator Judy. And I plan to just be creative and deal with the mismatched appliances on my own. Sometimes having a dilemma is good.

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  77. Hi again. Brenda, somewhere you mentioned that you now had a bunch of soggy cardboard boxes to deal with. One way to use them is in a gardening technique called "lasagna gardening." Here is a link to a description:

    http://organicgardening.about.com/od/startinganorganicgarden/a/lasagnagarden.htm

    Anyway, basically, it's a method of layering materials such as cardboard, newspapers, and so on as a way to keep down weeds in a garden and the materials break down and help enrich the soil. It seems like if you can do it in a garden plot, you could do it in containers as well, although maybe you would have to tear the materials in smaller pieces.

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    1. I would have loved to do that at the other house, but am just too tired to deal with the boxes other than attempt to get rid of them. My hands are already very tired and I don't want to rip those suckers up. There's just too darn many and more to be unpacked!

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  78. I love your new place! Small but yes, very cozy! That courtyard makes up for all the imperfections in the apartment, for sure. We had that same old dishwasher forever, check and see if that front panel pops out -- you might be able to spray paint it to match the stove! I wouldn't give those appliances a second thought, mine have been mismatched the entire time we have lived here and have you ever even noticed? :) Keep plugging away, you'll get it all figured out!! Love your charming new place!!

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    1. Well, that makes me feel better. No, never noticed it at your place!

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  79. When we downsized, we put our overflow into a storage unit. I soon found out I didn't need most of what we kept there and eventually got rid of almost all of it. But it took some time to figure out what was what. You do have a wonderful large patio. I wonder if you could purchase a small portable "shed" where you could keep some of your overflow. It might give you some more time to see what you really do/don't need, too. And maybe you could keep more than you think if you have a space to store seldom used things outside, like seasonal decorations. You're doing great, Brenda! I'm in awe that you've already unpacked everything. I love the bookcases/TV area in your bedroom.

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    1. Oh, I have a bit more to unpack. But am happy I have gotten some decorating done this morning. I don't know if they'd allow a shed. Right now can't afford one. Whatever doesn't work is just going to charity I guess.

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  80. Congratulations on your new home and making the move, Brenda! Moving is such a big job...deciding what a new room will become. I can't wait to see what you do (after you rest up)...and I think that is a wonderful patio space!!

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  81. Yes, the patio space to me is prime real estate. Thanks, Linda. I'm well into the daunting task now and actually seem to have some creativity simmering today.

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  82. Thinking of you today! Enjoyed reading all of the comments. Brenda, you are blessed with so many friends who care for you! Looking forward to checking in to your blog each day. Blessings, Carolyn in Florida

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  83. Brenda,

    Here's a link for some bathroom storage with mason jars. I know you love them and as soon as I saw it I thought you might like this. http://www.thediyplaybook.com/2013/04/mason-jar-organizer.html

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  84. I read this post and thought 'I have some suggestions for Brenda' then I realized I was too tired to type them all out!! Luckily many of them have been mentioned by some of your fabulous readers. Like you, I sit and stare at things and don't even know where to begin, but you know what? We will both get through this and come out the other end all the better.

    (My computer isn't even connected yet, so kudos to you for blogging so much amidst the chaos.)

    I can envision that your yard will be so 'you' in just a short time. It's perfect for you Brenda, and once you make your mark and bring in Mr. Sun you will start to feel at home and your mojo will be here to stay :).

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  85. Blessings Brenda! I look forward to seeing what you do. You inspire me.
    Fabric and starch work well for backing walls on cabinets. Easy to remove.
    Whatever you do is always attractive. Enjoy the creativity that makes you happy.

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  86. Brenda,
    Wow! I am to happy read all these responses to your decorating dilemmas.You opened up your home for us with a call for help to decorate. What you received in response was encouragement, care, concern and of course decorating advise! I am a blogger who benefited from you reaching out to me, with the Welcome Wagon Friday post. Your encouragement has blessed many people in the past and I am thankful to be one of the many.
    I see your new place as a beginning, to a new page, in the journey of life. Of course this move took a toll on you physically but, your reader above said you are like the tree. This little poem I write to remind you of your strength, kindness, and creativity, which you will use to make this place your Cozy Little House!
    Trees bend in the wind,
    Branches dance in the breeze,
    A leaf floats to the ground
    Feeding the next season,
    The roots hold on tight,
    Buds blossom again
    by, Karen Marie Kedzuch
    PS I can not wait to see what magic you bring to your new home. I would start with the spot that makes you happiest to be in because, the rest will come from that spot. Happiness!
    Sending you Hugs,
    Karen Marie Kedzuch
    Dragonfly & Lily Pads @ Blogspot.com

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  87. Great little apartment!! I'm sure that you will put your wonderful mark on it. The backyard is adorable!!
    Does the couch sectional piece fit in front of the window?
    Peace to your new apt life...
    Lisa

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  88. Love the fenced patio. Makes the difference between an apartment and a home. Idea for the slat/blinds: One apartment I Iived in had the same blinds. I didn't realize until I was cleaning them one day but you could actually push all the slats to one end. Then I hung lace curtains by using one of this light weight extension curtain rods and used wire and thumb tacks to hold the rod in place within the recess for the window. Then I hung nice curtains on a regular nice curtain rod on the side which covered up all my handiwork. So the slats disappeared, I had the lace to give a little privacy and the look of pretty curtains from inside the apartment. In my situation I was working with two windows the size of a sliding glass door. If you go in and out that door, this might not work exactly the same but for what it is worth, that's what I did.

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  89. Hi Brenda....
    I'm late, but my two cents worth :^)
    I didn't read all of the comments, so this may be a duplicate....the dishwasher makes a wonderful pantry....with pull out shelves to boot!! Just be sure to turn off the water supply...probably under the sink!
    Also, to make it match other appliances better...see if you can remove the front panel and turn it around...there is probably a white panel on the other side. Two screws (on the inside of the door) should be holding it in place.
    Your apartment is going to be beautiful....you are so talented!
    Blessings,
    J

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  90. I don't know how or why...but I missed this post.
    Please don't ever delete it. I know these pictures to you are 'cringe worthy'...but to me, they say 'REAL LIFE FOLKS!' Not that your other blog posts don't say that... you are real as real can be and we (I) love you that way, Brenda.
    My favorite 'cringe worthy' photo of this post... Abby and Charlie's toy box at the foot of your bed!
    What is not to love about a family's things strung out--making a TINY HOUSE a HOME!?!?
    I think what you have done in your new home has worked wonders for you and your tiny family.
    ...you inspire me to make the most of my space! Your Texas Friend, Pat

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I always enjoy reading your comments and having you join the conversation here at Cozy Little House. It is like having a gathering of friends sitting in my cozy apartment. Enjoying coffee and dessert, chatting and having a good time. I appreciate each and every one of you! However, if you are a no-reply commenter, I cannot reply via email to your questions or comments.

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