Thursday, July 16, 2009

more of the same (and small adventure at the bottom)

I'm not off the housing kick, people. Not even close - as you shall soon see. But before I launch into that, I shall make a mercifully brief nod to the world of IF. So I didn't have any definite CM during what all of what I simply assumed, based on the cycle day, was my fertile phase. It has occurred to me that I've now been trained in NFP for years, kept a chart with temperatures and everything for months, recognize my own symptoms without having to think about it, am seeing a NaPro fertility specialist, and am taking fertility drugs - and I'm now on the rhythm method. I am going backward.

By the way, rhythm doesn't work any better for conception than avoiding conception (not that I would know about that).

However, it does appear to be accurate. I figured that my totally invented fertile phase would be vindicated if I had a temperature spike. Two days ago (five days past what I am counting as peak day - which is about when my temperature always shifts, FTR), my temp was 98. Respectable. The next day it was 97.9, still more a luteal phase temp for me, but I wasn't sure. Today it was 98.3. So, anyway, I ovulated - anybody's guess when. What nonsense.

Now that that nonsense is out of the way, I can get to what's been entertaining me. It may bore everyone else to tears - it takes all kinds, you know. But here you go.

I have now decorated most of the house in my head. I'm still vacillating about the study (I know I want to build in floor-to-ceiling bookshelves around the entire room, like in the Clue library), and the last bedroom. The ideas I have got finalized are still subject to a bit of adjusting around the edges (oh, and subject to adjustment for reality after I, er, actually see the interior in person). The living room is a decent size, and in honor of the really cool vertically striped wallpaper in the living room in the house I grew up in, I thought I could try the painted stripes technique I've seen, in colors a little like these (the blue tape is in preparation for the next stripes):

For some reason (I haven't seen a picture) I've a notion that the downstairs bathroom has white ceramic tile with a black ceramic quarter-round tile border (you've seen this in old houses. It's a little difficult to decorate around), like this (only without more tile above the black):

Black and white together are a little difficult to decorate around, but I've had a brilliant inspiration. On the top half of the wall, above the black tile edge, I will put black and white damask:

It's brilliant, right? I know. I've suddenly become OBSESSED with vintage wallpaper - more to come. Anyway, then there's the dining room. It doesn't have wainscoting, and though I may be ethically opposed to adding architectural details, wainscoting is appropriate for the time period. So I might have to add some in bright white, and above it, dark taupe paint. NB: I know taupe would be a contemporary choice, but I figure I can do something current, occasionally, with paint, since it's so temporary. This is more brown, a bit darker than what I want:

But it gets better. We recently visited Monticello, where I saw a few things I decided I wanted in my house some day. I probably can't have an original, working stone hearth in my kitchen (I would so learn to cook over an open fire). But Jefferson also had an octagonal tea room off on the side of his dining room:

My house has a very minor league version of that (it's not octagonal and it's quite small):

You see where I'm going with this. I believe it's big enough for a tea table for two. And I think it would look lovely with some gold wallpaper:

Of course, I didn't stop there. The upstairs bathroom is a great human tragedy, having been recently been redone and in good condition - with pink marbly tile from floor to ceiling. (I don't believe the ceiling itself is tiled, which is the lone mercy.) So I guess that project will have to be last (you know, after I buy the house), and eventually I'll pry off all the pink tiles, put up white subway tiling, and see if I can't come up with something like this:

OK, so, maybe in a more modest size. With tile floors instead of marble (!!!).

I also found a fabulous, giant source of wallpaper - all at really good prices! - on They must have THOUSANDS of prints; they're the source of the samples I used above. But I've specially enjoyed looking through images of antique wallpaper - my goal is to find out what designs would be appropriate for the house's age, and then find a reproduction at a good price. There's a smaller but interesting collection of vintage wallpaper on, and another at

Wouldn't this one look nice as a bedroom accent wall, with rainwater blue paint on the other walls, and painted wood furniture? I saw an idea on a design blog for navy blue painted nursery furniture, and of course the room wouldn't actually BE a nursery, but in case in the future it were needed, you know, it would work for a boy or a girl - and wouldn't require me to decorate a conspicuous nursery that would mock me continually.

(That's a quarter, which the seller has helpfully provided to indicate the scale of the print.) And wouldn't this paper look nice as an accent wall in another bedroom, with the other walls painted light gray?

I'm still working on the perfect blue color scheme for the master bedroom. And I think I'll save the kitchen color scheme for another post. So, anyway, that's what I've been up to.

Oh, and, I keep forgetting to mention that I'll be driving down to Charlottesville, VA Sunday evening for two week training for work. I just found out Monday. I don't suppose anybody will be in the area around dinnertime during that time? I've struck out meeting the DC bloggers in person so far (but I'll get there), so I thought I'd give southern Virginia a shot...


  1. Sorry - back in my college days I would've been at Virginia Tech, and could have meet you at some diner in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Or Waffle House. Ah well.

  2. Cool ideas! I like the way they harmonize with the house's design as well as the history of the area. Makes a lot of aesthetic sense and is very, very pleasing--I love the b/w wallpaper idea. I also like bold color with b/w scenarios, but that might not be appropriate to the house's spirit. (Yes, I'm one of those wackos who *feel* houses and try to sense what's best for them. Crazy hippy, I know.)

    This CM stuff sounds so frustrating. I remember how fed up I got with all the temp, tracking, etc, and how neurotic it made me, because I could never find a rhyme or reason to my spotting (which was my biggest bugaboo). After a while, I just threw in the towel and said screw it, leaving things to my acupucturist/herbalist and then also to my RE. Timing sex has, uh, never been much of an issue, so it seemed like monitoring myself so closely was doing more harm to my mental health than good to my reproductive health. So I admire your fortitude (and the fortitude of your fellow bloggers following the same path). It's not easy!

  3. I love the vintage wallpaper. Very sweet. Looks like a darling house :). When will you get to explore the inside?

    Have a good trip to Charlottsville!

  4. i love the wallpaper! i tried to convince the hubs that we should wallpaper one wall in our bedroom, but he vetoed that idea right away. perhaps i can convince him in the forever house!

    have a great time in charlottesville!

  5. Do the floor to ceiling bookshelves. I've always wanted built in book shelves. They look so classic and they're a perfect spot for - wait for it - books! They take the elegance of the house up a few notches. And to me, a room full of built-in bookshelves would be the coziest room in the house.

  6. Sorry..I will be nowhere near Charlottsville, in Illinois makes that an issue. Actually, I kind of feel left out in my state. Maybe I'm the only IF'er around here...I'm kidding. My dr's office is always busy. I hope your two week work trip leaves some time for you to explore and relax! You really do have an eye for decorating. Do you watch those shows on HG.TV??? I love that channel. Decorating takes talent and you have it. Is wallpaper making a comeback? Hmmm...Many blessings to you.

  7. I love how much thought you are putting into how to decorate the house. It sounds lovely.

    I'm sorry that your body is driving you crazy right now. I hope this is the last cycle of craziness that you have to deal with.

  8. I'm late chiming in, but wanted to say that I love your wallpaper choices... one of these days, I'm gonna get brave and attempt to wallpaper in our house. I love damask -- like you can put damask in a collage with 100 other designs, and that's the one I'll go to every time. I painted our master bedroom a greenish-gray color, and did a damask stencil accent wall with antique gold paint. It was a ton of work, but I love it... Stripes will be my next attempt.

    I think your dream house is absolutely beautiful -- love the breakfast nook idea.