We haven't really made a whole lot of progress on the house. In fact, I'm just going to copy and paste that last sentence right now and keep it somewhere handy because I fear it's exactly how I'm going to be starting most of my blog posts between now and, I don't know, Christmas?
You think I'm joking about that Christmas thing---a co-worker of mine did the other day when I told her I hoped to get the new house in shape by Christmas ("it's only July!" she said)---but I'm really not. I've made a little pledge to myself that we'll have everything sorted out and organized and looking good by Christmas, and when I repeat this to myself it makes me feel better that our guest room is an ever-more-cluttered sea of boxes, that the kitchen walls are basically just plaster at the moment, and that we haven't been able to park our car in our garage since we moved in.
On the upside, we renovated our bathroom last weekend, what do you think?
Ah, I'm just kidding, that's the bathroom of the hotel I stayed in last night (the Montelucia in Phoenix; it was gorgeous, at least for the twelve or so hours I spent there). My actual bathroom, if you remember, looks more like this. Be careful of your eyes. You might want some protective goggles if you click that link. I'm warning you.
Part of the problem is that I have always been a very detail-oriented person. (Oh, really? You think? What tipped you off, the handmade cupcake toppers for my 30th birthday or the handstamped cocktail napkins for my wedding?) Putting so much stock in getting things just so has slowed down our unpacking and decoration process immeasurably. I can't just unpack a suitcase, I have to sort through the whole thing, group t-shirts according to size and color, and then try three different drawers to see which they look best in. I can't just pick a rug, I have to agonize over the task for weeks, visit forty seven different websites, narrow it down to three choices, change color palettes entirely, hold paint chips up to the computer, change color palettes back again, and then finally order the one I liked the look of in the first place.
It's a blast to be married to me, you can imagine.
Last weekend I did what was probably the most pointless thing I've done in the last few weeks since we moved into this house (and please remember that you're talking to a girl who arranges her wine glasses by height.) I made....well, how do I explain this?....a sort of display in the bathroom.
I had this thought one day, randomly and entirely out of context, that I should put the three million mason jars that held flowers at our wedding to some sort of good use in the new house. A normal person might use them as vases or maybe even wacky drinking glasses at outdoor parties (ooh! Good one! Mint juleps in mason jars!) but I thought maybe they might look good in the bathroom. And so I bought a bag of cotton balls and I bought a bag of Q-tips and I thought ah, excellent, now we will have some useful things really handy, and then I had nothing to fill the third jar with, and so I filled it with rocks.
Rocks! So useful in the bathroom! Exactly what you need sitting in a glass jar within easy reach! Darling, have you seen my shaving foam? No, I haven't, sorry, but there's a jar of rocks on the shelf! Oh crap, I've cut my finger, do we have any bandaids? Hmm, no, we don't have any bandaids, but have you seen that very useful jar of rocks?
Trust me, I know that my priorities are all wrong here. I've heard the phrase "arranging the deckchairs on the Titanic." Half my possessions are still sitting in cardboard boxes because I can't summon the time or the energy to unpack them---I mean eh, did I really need a hairbrush anyway? I hardly miss it---and yet my bathroom shelf is deeply, meticulously, uselessly set up with stuff, forty percent of which is there simply to look pretty.
It's silly, yes. But you know, it makes me happy to set up aesthetically pleasing little tableaux like this, particularly when the rest of my house looks like Lindsday Lohan just got done rampaging through it after a three day Oxycontin bender. Even brief, curated snatches of order and calm make it easier to realize that one day this house won't be a disheveled disaster zone like it is now, it'll be a comfortable, familiar, harmonious, happy home. Even if it does take us until Christmas.