Monday, September 10, 2012

Settling In

So you guys know I recently moved, right? And I was a bit, well....nervous. Scared, actually. Like a middle-aged little baby rabbit. Plus, the place needed some work, and while I was happy to dive in - hard work doesn't generally daunt me - early results were not encouraging.

First off, the bedrooms were painted this horrible soul-destroying shade of gray-green that made my paint look dreadful in contrast when I started painting. I mean, look at this:

Next, my new desk arrived. Yay!  ....except, it looked like this (and each piece weighed about a million pounds):

...and then, I was taking out the shelf paper and scraping wallpaper and there came a moment when I just sat on the floor and cried. Yes, I thought the tired, sad karma was going to eat me alive.

But then, a series of lovely things happened. First, once I covered up that green, my new sparkly paint looked great. Then, my friends arrived with a variety of blessings. Some babysat me, some sent really touching emails, some called to check up on me and some took me out for fried food and beer, and one of them came back from a month-long debauch to France with a beautiful soft gray lacy shawl to bring me inspiration. Oh, and my dad and his wife, and my sister and brother, always let me cry and cry and never got tired of me. Thank God.

Here is what Gigi Pandian brought me, from a recent visit to India. I knew when I put him up on the window ledge over the sink that it was time to welcome good luck into my life and turn my back on the fear.

So I started a new project - turning this old coat closet into my new office.

 First off was painting the space the most beautiful color in the world. This gorgeous gray blue is "Blue Fox" from Behr and I highly recommend everyone run out and buy a can and paint something, because it will make you feel contemplative and deep and calm.

Next, I bought me some fancy shelves from the Container Store. They're easy to install, so after a few minutes you feel like you have incredible carpentry skills and could probably build a house if you wanted to.

I unpacked all my office junk...

And before long, I was right at home. I had to get Tommy, handyman extraordinaire, to help me move that desk but I did everything else myself! 

Maybe here is a good time to note that I LOVE community laundry. Seriously, I am not seeing the downside. I don't have to ever dust the washer and dryer or scrub the detergent dust off the floor, or deep clean the lint traps, and we have these big-ass commercial machines here in my building that you can stuff like your whole wardrobe in. Also, now that Oakland's gone almost entirely to the credit card parking meters, what am I going to do with all those quarters anyway?

(Another day, I am going to talk about a certain comment a certain person made to me recently, about how everyone loses after a divorce. Seriously? I think maybe that person should have spent the last twenty years being in charge of keeping the laundry room clean.)

Okay, before I sign out, I have to brag just a tiny bit. Yesterday I went down to the Oakland farmer's market (I'll try to post some pix next time I go) and they had the loveliest blueberries, so fresh they still had the dew on them. So I made this pie. And trust me, friends, if you ever come over for pie at my house, you will NOT get a so-called crust from a box! This pie kicked ass - I should know, I had the leftovers for breakfast.


Marlyn Beebe said...

May I come over for pie, please?

This Blonde's Life said...

I am suddenly single after almost 30 years. The sprinklers broke, the fridge is making scary noises and the toilet sprung a leak. It feels great to put my big girl pants on and take care of it myself. I will tell you what I tell myself every day when I get up, "you can do this". Good luck, looks like you are well on your way!

Barbara Sissel said...

Sophie! Look at your desk and the shelves! I love the wall color, too. Very serene, like your life. Mostly. And when it isn't, just know around the corner, on the next day, in the next hour even, you'll find something wonderful ... like that beautiful pie. And then sometimes, there are tears anyway and it's hard, but even those serve a purpose. You go, girl! It's all good!

Marcy Campbell said...

So glad I'm not the only one writing in a closet. Yours looks great! Mine, alas, still has clothes in it...

Sophie Littlefield said...

Marlyn - you're welcome any time! :)

Blonde - and Barbara - thanks for the sisterhood and the encouragement. I really think we gain so much more than we lose when we strike out on our own. Barbara, your words are with me every day. And yes, it does feel great to say "I can"...even when I don't entirely believe it.

And Marcy! I love my closet. :) I think it's the best office I ever had.

Dru said...

Congrats on your new home. I love what you did with your new office.

sari said...

That is some seriously ugly wallpaper. :-)

I'm glad that in the middle of all these changes (new beginnings?) that you're finding and appreciating the little things that are so important, and it's awesome that you have such good family & friends to surround yourself with.

Know that with your writing, you've brightened many peoples lives, many people you'll probably never know about or meet, and keep that as a happy thought for some other time in the future.

PS LOVE the paint color. Love.

sari said...

oh and totally jealous of that pie, it looks delicious!

Judith Starkston said...

You really do kick ass, young lady! I will never doubt that when the going gets tough I should make sure you're around because you'll get through no matter what--and bake a killer pie as well. Have fun in your new digs.

Patricia Stoltey said...

It looks to me like you're doing just fine, Sophie. And that I don't think I've made pie crust from scratch in more than forty years.wleffe 14