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And now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for – I am ready to show you pictures of the new and improved living room!  The impetus for all these little changes was the fact that, with no dedicated nursery, I found myself changing Miss E on the floor in the middle of the living room… and realized I didn’t really want to be doing that for the next two years.

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BEFORE

I redid a thrift store lamp to make a pair of navy blue lamps on either side of the loveseat, moved the diaper station to the new entryway console, and replaced the office-y brown rug with a synthetic sisal rug.

Here’s what this view looks like now.  No more diapers in the middle, hurrah :)

AFTER

AFTER

I love the new rug!!  It’s not the most noticeable change in the photos, but it adds quite a bit of texture to the atmosphere.  Here’s a side by side comparison of the old rug (left) getting rolled out of the way for the new rug (right).

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The rug is baby-approved too.

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My next problem area was directly across from the front door.  This is what you saw coming into the house.

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BEFORE

I moved the grandfather clock to the dining room, where it has finally found a permanent home.  It’s been all over and it never quite looked like it belonged until it arrived at its newest spot.

I turned the desk 90 degrees so as not to have everything on that wall shoved up against it in a line, tweaked the spacing of the printer stand to create a more defined office spot, and moved in a tall bookcase where the clock used to be.  I hid the worst of the cords with some wraparound cord binder (not sure what that stuff is called).  The stroller is not bee-you-tiful but it has a good, handy home in the corner now.

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AFTER

Here’s another shot with some more of my “before” issues.

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BEFORE

I cheated on trimming my curtains – you can read about it here.

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In this “after” you can see that the mirror has a new frame (psst… it’s a $5 thrift store find that is just leaning against the mirror while we decide how to make one that is a perfect fit.)  It gives the mirror a ton more presence!

AFTER

AFTER

You may have noticed that I also messed with the gallery wall.  It was a little too random for me before.  It felt more kitschy than I liked, so I regularized its shape.  I can’t swear that I’m done tweaking that…

I’m very fond of my bright pillows & throw on the loveseat.  I like to think they detract from the BLACKNESS of the black leather furniture – please smile and tell me I am totally right :)  Darlene at Fieldstone Hill Design posted about ugly duckling furniture a couple weeks back and this is mine.  When I nurse Miss E I sit in the armchair opposite and stare at my gallery wall and bright pillows instead of the loveseat, and it feels good inside.

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Finally, here is the old view of the back wall…

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BEFORE

…and the new and improved view.

AFTER

AFTER

I have a bonus for you too.  Guess what, I actually painted the inside of the front door!  It’s been this bluish gray primed steel for three years and I finally finally finally painted it white.  It took a day’s worth of naps and four coats but it was so overdue.

Before…

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BEFORE

And now…

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AFTER

So there you have it!  This was not a dramatic makeover but a series of important tweaks that make the living room look more intentional and cohesive.  And that’s what a good re-design should do.  I’d still love to paint the walls a deeper tobacco tan shade but first I have to convince the Chief ;)  Other than that, the living room is pretty much done.  At least for now!

We are on the mend!  After the Chief got sick, so did I and then Miss E.  This has been a gnarly cold – 6-7 days of yuck before starting to feel improvement.  But I am finally feeling a bit more energetic.

When I was sitting on the couch the other day, drinking tea and reading a good book, I realized that if I looked up I could see my favorite view in the house.  I have often noticed that the most enticing view can be one seen through a couple rooms and out a window on the far side of the house, and mine is no exception.  I love to see the afternoon light shining across the house through the bathroom window, backlighting the plant on the windowsill.

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The rich paint color also draws the eye and makes the sunlight that much more enticing.

What is your favorite view or sightline in your house?

Sorry about the radio silence lately.  When Miss E hit Wonder Week 19 she began to wake up at least three times a night to eat.  Last night it was five times.

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I did a lot of desperate research on the internet and in books.

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Then the Chief got really sick.

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Basically I feel like this!

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There will soon be time and energy for increasing the house’s prettiness, but at the moment I’m patting myself on the back for keeping the status quo.

Coming up on my list: the living room reveal, organizing my sewing area, and deciding which room to tackle next!  I’m inspired to keep hanging in there :)