I know many people who have modern streamlined tastes, great rooms and open floor plans; a few who love antiques, or old-fashioned furniture and decor. I don’t know anyone who shares my my eclectic (I think crazy is a better word to describe it) decorating taste…maybe Fred Sanford – do you remember Sanford and Son? That is my living room furniture/style, only in red, rather than avacado green.

When I was married, my then husband preferred matching; pairs of lamps, sofa and loveseat(same fabric pattern) and drapes. He liked dark hunter green. I made the house look nice within those confines. Back then, it was more important to me that HE liked it. I am a person who finds it easy to be content – and it never bothered me, that the style wasn’t my own.

When it was just me and my kids, the house was set up to be convenient. A door on the kitchen to keep the dogs out and to afford some separate spaces for homework. Some things had to be stored away in order to be safe with my daughter. There had to be alarms on the doors. I had too much to do to consider just what would please me as far as decor went. I replaced things that got broken with found furniture or thrift store/yard sale bargains; function and safety were always more important than form.

Decorating my house the way I like it has become some kind of weird self-care.

Now that I live alone, everything is MY way. (Almost everything, my son is still storing stuff in his old bedroom and the basement!) I like red, so there is a lot of it. I have a beaded curtain in the doorway – because I like it. I hang items on the wall that make me smile….things that remind me of places and people I love, and who love(d) me: I have a toy piano in the living room – my aunt brought it home on a bus in a snow storm. She did that just for me. The toy train my uncle bought lives on my window sill. I have a lot of cardinal birds(our local high school team ). I have a deer head on my living room wall – not a real one, although I would like one – but a stuffed animal deer head that a friend picked up at a garage sale, because it made her think of me; I smile whenever I see it. I have old things that were my grandma’s or her sister’s; old photos, old needlework. I have porcelain enameled tables in the kitchen, with vintage linens to use when a friend comes for dinner. I have old fashioned rugs on the floors, with a plan to refinish the hardwood underneath when I retire. I frame and hang my children’s artwork.

The style reflects me, only me, and it is extremely comfortable and cheerful. I never imagined I would enjoy the kind of freedom of expression that I currently have in my home.

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