There is nothing more curative than repainting a room, moving the furniture around and putting a fresh face, or backsplash, in your kitchen in the hopes of uplifting spirits that are suffering as a result of seasonal affective disorder or political chaos. I’m drowning in the latter these days and I’m desperate for distraction.

Cleaning up for the painters sounds antithetical, but if you don’t clear away the cobwebs, and dust off your trinkets, their job is just going to be a nightmare and you may end up with an errant bug incorporated into your living room wall. And who really wants that?

Though I profess to having a clean house, and yes I get some help in keeping it that way, there is always dust. The damn dust. I had a friend who once told me that the dust in your house is primarily made of flaked off human skin. Yuck!! I checked out this factoid (does googling count?) and thankfully he was wrong, very wrong. It’s a factor, but unless you are in the process of molting, you should really blame the dirt outside and its insidious desire to get out of the cold and come into your house. Uninvited guests are the worst, no?

But prepare I did. It was a restorative, therapeutic and even cathartic process of clearing the shelves of everything from my (now grown) kids’ art projects to thirty-five year old wedding presents, some of which I never liked, or never knew what to do with. Given with the best of intentions, but completely useless, a few, such as a stone carved seal weighing ten pounds, just got stuck on a shelf. Now it was time to dust them off, wrap them in tissue paper, and leave them in a box for some future unveiling.

Choosing the color was the easy part for me. I’d been dreaming of this buttery soft creamy color ever since I saw the wind-blown savannahs of Africa last summer. I wanted to capture that beauty and make it part of my serenity serum. The first coat is almost done, and I think it’s going to do the trick. It kind of looks like vanilla ice cream, with extra vanilla, and extra butter and extra cream. You just want to swim in a pool of this stuff.

Of course, improving one part of your house, can lead to seeing every other room as dowdy, seedy and dumpy.

One bright light can dim the rest, so beware. There is no antidote, but there are preventative measures.

  1. To begin with don’t over medicate with the home improvements in the first place. You will quickly go down the rabbit hole, and your bank account will be going along with you.
  2. Pick your top priorities, and then go wild slashing items off the list. Be ruthless, but seriously, if you you’ve waited this long to change things up, another season, political or otherwise, will not make a huge difference.
  3. Finally, take pleasure in the baby steps. My new living room walls are gleaming. Everything looks brighter and cheerier. The window sills aren’t flaking (avoiding more dust), there are no spiders hanging out in all corners of the ceiling, and all the artwork pops with the new color behind it. Added bonus, my husband thinks I got a new haircut. Now that’s interior design at its best.




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