Getting our house in order.

How is everyone doing in quarantine land?

I hope everyone has what they need, and I am thinking about those of you living in countries where I know the government is not doing as much to support their citizens as they should.

Sweetie and I are doing fine.  Sweetie is not working right now, though we are positive that once things in British Columbia start to settle into a “new normal” and places start to hire again, that she will be able to find a good job.  The job she had before was always a bit dangerous, and the hazard just became too high to tolerate after you throw a pandemic on top of it.  Our finances are of course tight as a result, but completely manageable and we are so fortunate and thankful for that.  We are very lucky.

Our new home is great too.  Well, we have had an issue with the shower, that has resulted in the need to tear out the wall, and because of the pandemic, we can’t have that project completed right now.  One of our shower walls is actually plastic vapor barrier, and we hope it will hold up until the contractors are taking work again, which we expect them to do soon.  Fun stuff.

Sweetie and I are making our new condo feel like a home.  We had the luxury of space in Ucluelet, 3 bedrooms and nearly 2000 square feet.  It’s the biggest space we have ever lived in!  We may never have that kind of square footage again, so we are getting creative with our lovely and modest 1 bedroom, which, by the way, feels so much larger at 675 square feet than our 500 square foot apartment did.

We have set up the bedroom to be an art studio / sanctuary for Sweetie.  When I have sessions on Sundays, Sweetie is usually in the bedroom where she won’t disturb or overhear me.  It was important that she have a functional creative space in there.

To maximize the floor space, we pushed the bed against the wall – something I haven’t done since I was a teenager, but was *totally* worth it.  There is space in there now to do yoga, and half the room is set up with Kat’s easel, a soft pine bookcase with sea-grass baskets holding her paints, pencils, gesso and other mediums, her art inspiration books, and her dozens of sketchbooks.

The top shelf is half-full with mason jars holding her 100+ paintbrushes.  One side of the book case has a teal wire magazine rack holding 1970s “how to paint seascapes / trees / mountains” over-sized booklets with gorgeous cover illustrations, reminding me of Bob Ross.

The side of the bookcase nearest to the wall supports a stack of large “work in progress” canvasses, some blank but primed, some partially completed, some still untouched.  It makes me want to sit down and paint again myself, something I haven’t done in over 10 years.

In the center of the room there is a decently-sized window with a wood venetian blind we will replace at some point (it came with the unit).  In front of this window, we installed three ceiling hooks (because we own the place and can put holes in the ceiling if we want to!)  Suspended from these hooks are three spider plants, who instantly spread out to embrace their new space.  These plants transformed the energy of the space, granting it a relaxed, nurturing feeling.

I have mentioned before how I have allowed my enjoyment of houseplants to run amok since we moved away from the rainforest.  Victoria does have impressive access to nature, but it’s no longer a part of my daily life, so I am doing my best to turn our home into a jungle.  This process is even more interesting given our access to multiple nurseries and thus a variety of unusual and sometimes rare species of plants.  I like to focus on the ones which feature purple or pink foliage.  I installed a few more ceiling hooks in the living room, so the jungle transformation has begun!

The living room is currently in disarray.  The dining table is dominated by my computer set up.  I think I will have to make room for a proper desk, or we will just not have a dining table ever.  I need to think about where I’d actually PUT a computer desk.  These are spatial problems I really do enjoy, and I have a few ideas, but these things will require some more time and probably some more purchases to execute.  I really do need a dedicated office space, to replace the office I left behind in Ucluelet, and to provide space for my continuing education studies, once “normal” life resumes.  I just can’t find the mental headspace to start studying right now, given the pandemic, the work-in-progress bathroom, and Sweetie who is always home.  I also would rather keep the tuition money in the bank right now, just in case.

The cats have adapted well to apartment life, though I do feel a bit guilty to have to confine them to a smaller space.  They have each other though, and now that we are both home quite a bit, their happy place is right in front of our faces, breathing our breath and using the mysterious force of feline gravity to discourage us from moving and disturbing them.

I did buy a little mini Nintendo, the kind that is pre-loaded with games, for indulgence in our quarantine amusement.  I found a second-hand knock-off one in the facebook marketplace for $50, and the contactless-exchange of goods for dollars went off without a hitch.  It plays Super Mario well enough for me to really enjoy, but it’s a kinda glitchy, so that Sweetie, a veteran player of the 1990s, can’t pull off show-boaty moves like getting 100 free lives as she would like to do.  In fact, her aggressive style of play may have resulted in a broken controller in the first week!  There is a slight chance it may have broken when dropped, though, or maybe it was pre-broken when I bought it.  I have seen how she plays with her whole body though, so I think the jury’s still out.  The return to Super Mario game play is very fun!  We may decide to get a “retron” for Christmas if we are still enjoying playing the vintage games of childhood.

On Sundays, I am working through the line-up of New Year Report Card sessions!  I really love doing them, and it’s so nice to talk to the folks who book these every year.  If that’s you, thank you so much.  It has been so cool to hear how these sessions work out, year-to-year.

I have left the New Year Report Card booking option active on my professional website for now, mostly because I haven’t had time to update my website in months!  You can see it still says “Now booking Fall 2019” – LIES!  See, this loops back to me needing an office area, or so I tell myself!

I will give a sneak peek into the future and confirm for my regulars that yes, I will be doing another Pet Session Special this summer!  Keep your eyes out for that post.  I will launch it by August, maybe sooner depending on how other demands on my time pan out in the next few months.

Meanwhile, I do have a pet session discount available which you can always use – just enter “ILoveMyPet” in the coupon code space 🙂

Take care out there, stay safe everyone.  ♥

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