Today was an unexpectedly good day.
A little background: My 70+ year old mom has been redoing her living room for months now. She has had a foggy vision of what she wants, and has worried my poor sister over it for the same amount of time. First I had to go over there and stitch on a quilt clamped on an enormous contraption just so she could tell one of my nieces that I had done so. This had to be done before the couch that would allow my poor short mother to put her feet on the ground while sitting in it arrived the next day. I also was tasked with taking ownership of a pretty ugly burnt orange recliner that had no home in her newly envisioned living room nor any other part of the rest of her house. Oh, and not only did my mom used to have a gift shop (read she has tons of crap) but also, she’s been digging out every last thing my dead father owned and made it a shrine to him.
So, yesterday I missed my chance to just go get the recliner (it takes two people) because I’m a numb-skull. As soon as my buddy R left, my sister called, exasperated. She’d called in every chit to move furniture and Mom was still not happy. This makes my sister not happy and not amenable to my jokes. I had a mission on my hands.
I woke up this morning and cleaned the damn house. I could have my house as clean as an ICU and it wouldn’t be good enough for my mom. I did my best.
I got out to their house on time and with a vision in my mind. My sister had given me all of the failures of other furniture arrangements. I knew, without measuring what I would suggest. It’s all about the angles. And the space. I only eliminated two small pieces of furniture, in a graceful way (making sure I didn’t insult the furniture and my mom by proxy).
We angled the couch, got the weird behind the couch table in the right place, figured out how to keep all the chairs she wanted, and in the end found a nice way that the behind the couch table stuff reflected off the mirrors in the big-ass curio cabinet that I thankfully didn’t have to move.
As I suggested subtle moves of furniture that didn’t task my sister and I much, my mom liked it more and more. My sister opined that it “just takes a different eye” and we did high-fives when mom wasn’t in the room. Seriously, it had gotten to the point that my mom was “just letting my sister live there” in my sister’s mind yesterday afternoon.
Having gotten the furniture arranged, we went out for lunch and came back to hang pictures. Big-ass pictures. One in particular had some weird connection to my dad and couldn’t be looking toward the door, like he was leaving. We worked it all out and got them all hung. The last one might get re-done because by that time my sister and I were just happy that mom was happy and mom was happy in every place she sat in the room. My poor sis may have to rehang it later.
We loaded up the burnt orange recliner and headed to my house.
Murphy and Tammy were not nice to them. Murphy in particular wouldn’t come in from the front yard and neither my mom nor sis — big dog people — would get close to the fence. Murphy was particularly crazy — running in eights around the yard and not minding me.
While inside, my sis had all sorts of ideas for my house. In the past, I had always thought that she and her big bag of money could do it, but today, not so much. I know she sees my house as a project. I’m trying to make it better. She was so grateful today, it almost made me cry.
I let Dora out in the yard after mom and sis were outside. Good Dora was sweet and licked their hands. She remembered them. When we started talking about the backyard, Dora got barky. I changed everything to “Dora is gonna do this that or the other” and Dora got all wiggly and happy again.
My mom is not so mad at their dog Stormy, having experienced my dogs. This can only be good for Stormy.
As she was driving away, my sis did a low 5 and tried to grab my hand, though I didn’t get it at the time. Mom was looking forward to continuing her living room redecoration.
Today, I made my sister’s life easier.
It was such a simple thing to do.