Friday, January 9, 2015

Turning a House Into a Home

Bit by bit, picture by appliance by piece of furniture, we've been turning the Warren from a place we rent/occupy into the place we live and love.

Even though we don't own it, we've been adding our own touches. At first it was a few paintings from artist friends, one by one adding to or in some cases replacing the wonderful art our landlady had installed for the benefit of her short-term vacation tenants. We could always take small artwork with us if we moved somewhere else, right?

Then we came across some good second-hand (or third- or fourth-hand, who knows) furniture: a desk and chair for D-L to write her murder mysteries (, blogs (, short stories, etc.; a dining table for four with a built-in extender for six; wooden tables and chairs for the open-air patio/garden and the kitchen; an assortment of ceramic pots for the patio which required a fun trip to Spain; a new firmer mattress for the master bedroom. Still, all transportable to another place if necessary (though definitely not our desire).

More recently, we've added a few things of more permanence. A pair of beautiful and thick custom drapes (sewn by our late friend Barbara) over the patio doors to keep the heat in during winter. And, when a fluorescent light tube broke, it seemed a good excuse to replace both light fixtures in the den and my desk area with something more attractive.

D-L was a bit conflicted. First, she doesn't like to replace something that works - even though it might be ugly. Second, she was concerned new light fixtures might not provide as much luminence as the industrial-style fluorescents. But third, she hates, hates, hates to shop and didn't want to take the time for an expedition to the DIY store.

So I went - but with some trepidation. Gotta get strong enough lights. Something that is reasonably attractive. Oh, we also needed a small wall light to replace the one that had rusted out in the dining area. And all three fixtures needed to fit the wiring that was already in place.

Ended up with the small spotlights you see in the photo. They remind me of movie/TV/theatre lights, and that reminds me of my actor grandson ( and actor granddaughter ( So, good on the design appeal. And, it turns out, good on the lumen power. In fact, we probably need a dimmer to dial them back a bit.

Perhaps the best result is Donna-Lane didn't need to go shopping.

Next project - painting the walls in the dining and den area. (And the ceiling because the fluourescents left dark areas.) D-L will probably move up to the Nest for the duration of that one.

One of these days, I hope to replace the fluorescent lights in the master bedroom and her office / snore room ... but, shhhhh, don't tell Donna-Lane.

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