Sunday, February 5, 2017

Less Mess, More Memories

Since our return from New York late September, I've been trying to get the apartment more settled and organized. We finished most of our renovations months ago and never got around to putting things completely back together. Then My Mother The Dowager Duchess took her final bow and we returned with memories of her. What we carried home with us was followed months later by some furniture, art, and other things we didn't have the heart to part with.

We also shipped back from South Dakota dozens of framed family photos we had left with Linda and Tom (Jerry's sister and her husband) when we moved to Spain. About 10 boxes. They were supposed to go through the photos, keep what they wanted, share with the kids, and then get rid of the rest.

Somehow, in the emotions of our departure, Linda and Tom missed that point and thought they were simply storing boxes of papers! So, in September, we whittled the 10 boxes down to 4. We've now got a lot of framed photos and not a lot of wall space. I'm doing what I can, while turning what I had hoped would be a minimalist apartment into a Victorian-looking collection of clutter.

I'm trying to keep the clutter under control and, I must admit, we both love seeing so many family photos back on our walls (thanks, Linda and Tom) along with original artwork, including paintings and sculptures by The Dowager Duchess.

We used to have close to 200 photos lining a hallway or stairway in every one of our [more spacious] homes in the States, plus dozens displayed on tabletops. A few dozen is all this place can handle, I think. And each one requires me to drill a hole into the concrete wall. So, if I measure wrong, that's where it stays! I still have to figure out permanent homes for all the additional sculptures and knick knacks that are strewn on most surfaces.

Mess makes me crazy.

(Click the images for a better look.)





OF COURSE, DUDO...
... AND MOOSE MONITOR MY PROGRESS.

24 comments:

  1. I'd say you have a little piece of heaven, very cozy and very much your life, family and experiences. Quite comfy indeed and Dudo definitely agrees.

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    1. Ron:
      We really do appreciate this wonderful situation!

      Delete
  2. Love what you have done with the place. Its like your sanctuary from the world. So many never take time in an apartment to make it a home, and why not? Comfort and style comes in all shapes and sizes.

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    1. mistress maddie:
      We love making improvements. This place had location, terrace, and view going for it to begin with. The interior space is finally feeling more like us.

      Delete
  3. Your apartment looks very serene and cosy. I like your placement of your photographs. I am very sentimental and have family photos around most of our walls.Much of Chucks birth family were killed in the Holocaust so I feel like we are honouring their memory by having their photos up.
    Very sweet kitties.....

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    1. Cat Lover:
      Those photos of Chuck's family are so special to have. I can imagine how heartwarming and heartbreaking that can be.

      Dudo and Moose ARE sweethearts.

      Delete
  4. Mitchell you have a lot of photos It is also very popular in UK. nice apartment

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  5. a warm and inviting home you have. and that is one of my fave ray charles songs!

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    1. anne marie:
      Still more to do around the house, but it has especially become "ours" in recent weeks.

      Delete
  6. Dudo has that "critical" eye; be very afraid.

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    1. Bob:
      Dudo watched from his perch as I snapped pictures. And, yes, very critically. Moose followed me back and forth and sat at my feet for each shot.

      Delete
  7. Your home looks beautiful. I'm also in the process of incorporating my mother's things into our home. It's getting crowded in here.

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    1. Stephen:
      We did so much downsizing over the years and then really down-sized to move to Spain. Fortunately, being so far from New York, it was impractical to keep more of my mother's things. We're grateful!

      Delete
  8. You did a great job, Mitchell! It is important to have things around you both that conjure up good memories. These are treasures to have.

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    1. Jim:
      We are very happy with what we kept of my mother's. Before our move to Spain, Jerry read that it was important, if we could, to ship some pieces of furniture or personal items that would make wherever we settled more like home. It was great advice. We didn't know how much wall space we'd have, so we didn't ship the photos. In Sevilla, we had tons of wall space and could have used them all. Here, it's much more limited, so it was good to be in control of that. But the family photos sure are wonderful to have again.

      Delete
  9. You have managed to achieve uncluttered Victorian! Love that mirror and how it reflects (well, duh!) the light and amaryllises from the terrace. We still have so much in storage back in MN that we are anxious to bring down here. Maybe next year ...

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    1. Wilma:
      Our other places were cluttered, but there was space enough to compensate. I'm still working on it here. That mirror was one of the items we brought with us when we moved to Spain. We didn't want to take advantage of Linda and Tom by storing things with them and we had no place of our own to leave things, so we made the hard decisions 6 years ago. We miss some things, but only a very few.

      Delete
  10. Do you have IKEA over there? If you do, their very reasonably priced glass cabinets AKA the Detolf might be something to consider. I bought one last year, They have a pretty small footprint but plenty of height and if I count the bottom and top shelf, I got 5 new places to put things. :)

    http://www.ikea.com/au/en/catalog/products/60269123/

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    1. Snoskred:
      Our three bedrooms are furnished mostly by IKEA. We filled our Sevilla apartment with IKEA furniture to start out. That was before they had those beautiful glass cabinets. We've since replace the living room furniture from IKEA (except the sofa and chairs, which we've recovered twice now). We now have an IKEA just 15 minutes away by car (and even on the train line)... and we have a family membership! We no longer need more cabinets or storage.

      Delete
  11. Beautiful! Looks like a very comfortable room. I'm packing my bags.

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    1. Walt the Fourth:
      Now we just need to spend some time in it! Lately, we seem to only use it as a hallway to the terrace.

      Delete
  12. Wonderful space, I'll need to call on your expertise when we merge the house into the much smaller condo in a couple of years.

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    1. Travel:
      Oh, we are pros at downsizing. Went from huge 5 bedrooms to small 3 bedrooms to 2 bedrooms and then across the ocean. I got really good at thinning things out without going into a major depression. It was actually really freeing.

      Delete

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