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2014-06-18 / Loose Ends

The Cinderella projects

Susan Nienow

I am addicted to the home makeover TV shows. I love to see the mice-gnawed wiring, the water-stained plaster and the kitchen cabinet doors hanging at a tilt in the “before” tour of the house. The crew comes in, rips out the old and installs the new in just an hour.

The couple is astonished at the transformation – new shiny appliances, fresh paint, new cabinets and even new furniture. Their marriage may survive now that she has a beautiful kitchen and doesn’t have to move out of the neighborhood.

It’s like a fairy tale and always has a good ending. Not once have I seen anyone smash a bowl or take the art off the wall or cry unhappy tears. Their contracts must say, “If you don’t like something, you can change it after the filming is over.”

In between the fairy tale outlines there are nuggets of decorating or remodeling advice. One concerned ceilings. Absolutely no popcorn ceilings. That is tacky, bad and all around a huge negative. Our ceilings are not popcorn, but they are textured. I like them.

And really, we’re not scheduled for a home makeover, and no one here is going to scrape the ceilings so I have to like them. Another little tidbit advised viewers to hang their curtains at the ceiling. Oops. Ours are not. If I did move them to the ceiling, there would quite a space at the bottom. Speaking of the bottom, the curtains are also supposed to puddle at the bottom.

Interesting word. I associate puddle with mud or puppies. Not curtains. Dust lives at the bottom of my curtains. No room for puddling.

New curtains – longer ones – are not in the picture. By the time I would get the project done, I would hear that curtains are to be hung at the top of the window. I am definitely learning that following the trends means I will always be out of step with the latest and greatest.

Another thing about watching these shows is coveting the glass slippers. In other words, I would love a free-standing tub. We have the built-in kind. I’m not sure there’s room for one anyway.

I would also love to have an outdoor fireplace, although I can’t see myself sitting outside to enjoy it. I do very little sitting unless I am doing something like reading, beading, hunting for something I lost on my desk or other time-consuming chores. It would be for looks only.

My other half pointed out that the “looks only” budget is nonexistent. I was sure we had one.

The current buzzwords in the home and garden magazines are organic, open floor plan, bamboo anything from floors to ceilings to furniture and a modern twist, a traditional twist, or a rustic twist. I tear out pictures for my other half to look at just in case he feels like making something or shopping for something. He stacks them next to his chair in the family room. The stack is getting pretty high, but I am not seeing any motivation from him.

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