Getting unpacked with expert assistance
My wife’s office is already finished, new drapes and all, and she has been seeing clients for a month for her social work practice. We’ve already unpacked three out of four wardrobes of clothing in our bedroom. And, much as I’m not thrilled about it, my wife’s clothing is now organized by slacks, tops, dresses and jackets and is “residing” in three closets.
As homeowners again, after four years of renting, our whole outlook has brightened and in just barely a month, our new house is feeling more and more like home. Of course, we have a long way to go to reach house-beautiful status, especially on the main floor. But with the assistance of Julio, the wonderful waiter at my regular diner, we made a lot of headway last Saturday. Recognizing that our age really limits us from moving chairs and other small pieces of furniture easily, I asked Julio to rescue us and it was the best thing I could have done. The guy is a super home organization whiz.
Julio arrived about 11:30 a.m. and before my wife had returned with the dogs from a book-club meeting, he had moved chairs and book shelves into upstairs bedrooms, emptied out 75 percent of the unnecessary stuff from my wife’s future sewing room, providing inside access to the garage; thrown a heavy recliner, rocking chair, which had been in the middle of the kitchen, over his head and placed it in the sewing room; worked with me to unroll an area rug under the dining room table and placed six chairs around the table.
Julio also carried a chair and bookshelves upstairs to one of the guest bedrooms and we placed an accent carpet under our old queen bed in that room. The master bedroom now has our favorite low-slung chair in a comfortable spot and our smallest bedroom now contains bookshelves and a file cabinet.
I was amazed at how quickly Julio rearranged this organizational jigsaw puzzle and pulled things together. I breathed a sigh of relief when I looked across the future sewing room and visualized how it might be arranged. And it was really nice to look into the living room/dining area and know that we would soon be able to do some entertaining.
Julio’s effort was clearly a mission accomplished and in just a month, we are finally in a position where we have mostly boxes to unpack and just our breakfast area outside the kitchen to organize. My wife surprised me earlier this week by unpacking all of her book boxes and getting books shelved in her office…albeit in the middle of the night. God bless insomnia.
As Julio worked, he uncovered boxes of unopened books shelves that I had purchased for our rental home and never assembled along with shelving units from Home Depot that we had purchased while in our last house in Fairfield. He graciously offered to assemble all of those stand-alone shelves and shelving units for another visit.
The other inside project I want to finish over the next few weeks is the organization of our grandson Lucas’ playroom in the finished basement. Right now most of the area is filled with more fabric - I thought we’d stored everything - and seven loose plastic shelving units. Originally, my wife wanted those upstairs in her sewing room for current fabric she’s using, but I gently convinced her that we could place those units around the outer perimeters of the play room and she could easily store the fabric for quick access.
On the outside, I’ve already spoken to a great landscape guy who moonlights from his job as a waiter and will be helping us economically build some curb appeal. Joey suggested a mix of grass and mulch for the front, along with some really nice perennial shrubbery.
In the back yard areas, Joey will be removing rotted wood frames and creating a new bed of perennial plants with mulch. And above the driveway, where we have a small sloping area, he’s adding a mix of mulch and stones.
We’re doing things gradually, but by mid-June or July, we’re hoping to have this landscaping project done and to make a little patio area on our back driveway. I told my wife that this summer, it would be nice to do some barbecuing.
We’ve decided that no matter how long any of these projects take, we are in no rush. This will be our last home and we really want to enjoy it. So far, each day has been one we’ve savored and we’re just glad to be here.
Steven Gaynes is a Fairfield writer, and his “In the Suburbs” appears each Friday. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.