The good news is I've gotten an itch to blog something. The bad news is that I haven't been doing anything terribly interesting. We'll see what happens. But first I'd like to note, in light of my last blog post, that everything is still jogging along here as usual and nothing seems to be the problem except for this darn cold I'm still trying to shake. Currently my only symptoms are sleeping more than usual and having a few moments throughout the day in which my lungs attempt to turn themselves inside out. Apparently this is what happens when you have bronchitis as a little baby. I once spent an entire semester with a cough like Cerberus despite otherwise feeling great and not having any other symptoms. I probably scared a few people into taking their vitamin C though :)
A side affect of being sick has been that Allen's folks haven't been able to come over for dinner the past couple weeks and that I haven't been able to get much done. Seriously, until I started feeling better recently I had exactly two days in which to get anything done. One of those was a Sunday and the other day we were out of town. In other words, I got rather behind. Also, I got tired of chicken nuggets, but that's beside the point. This week though we're (sort of) back to normal. That means folks over for dinner this week and me trying to decide which project to tackle. I've decided that Allen's folks coming over makes a nice little mini-deadline for me to get on something and see what I can accomplish each week. It can be anything from getting a light fixture hung to building a bookcase to hanging curtains to painting something. You get the idea. We have quite a bit that still needs doing, and I like having my little once a week deadline as incentive to keep ticking things off my list.
This week I thought I'd maybe paint the transom window (finally!) and hang some curtains. I may still start on some of that, but in my erratic way of working I actually ended up getting our large mirror and several pieces of artwork hung. Yes, I know. I should be blogging with pictures. Still, I've really been enjoying our large blank walls and all the space we have for artwork. Growing up my parents really only had prints by two different artists on the walls. They were rather nice prints, and I really enjoyed having them in our house. I just didn't grow up with people who collected or sought after artwork to any great extent, and it really surprises me how easy and inexpensive developing an art "collection" really can be. In the den I just hung three vintage maps I got for maybe $10 all together. The living room contains a poster print of an antique photograph of Delicate Arch in Utah along other national park ephemera, a couple etsy finds, and a letterpress print. I don't think a single piece was above $30-40. I've also picked up $5 canvases at yard sales and thrift stores. While not great art they're pretty similar to what you'd find for much more at an arts and crafts show. My point is that it's really not too hard to assemble a decent collection of art. Even if your tastes runs more towards great paintings you can often find decent reproductions if you look. Eventually I'd love to walk into a gallery and pay $200-500 for an original painting I love, but even if those replace some of my $5 canvases I've started a collection of things I really like and that beautify our home. For not having grown up this way I really enjoy poking around art shows and tent sales and second hand stores looking for bits of art and furniture. The value I've gotten has been nothing like what these things would cost new, and with a coupon for a new frame or a coat of paint or a bit of fabric everything comes together. Ok, I admit I'm on the "eclectic" side of things. If your taste turns towards Italian Renaissance or imported English Oak you're going to have to look a lot harder. For my mid-century ranch meets traditional farmhouse and loves to travel the countryside vibe it works out very well.