Monday, August 23, 2010

Putter, Putter, Fluff, Fluff

Hi everyone! I’m deep cleaning my living room this week so of course that means I have to change a few things around. That’s why it takes me so long to clean anything! I always have to reward myself by scheduling some play time too :)

I’m not ready to bring out any fall decorations just yet (still waaaay too hot and humid). But I’m making a few little changes here and there. I thought I’d show you what I’ve done with my faux fireplace mantel so far.

For the summer I had a white and apple green thing going on and I thought I’d add bit more color now that we’re heading into fall.

Aren’t these stripey candles cute? I got them at Ikea. 

I’m still using those old books I altered.

Those big red candlesticks are old brass ones from the thrift store that I spray painted a long time ago.

I also brought the fishing basket of flowers that I’ve been using in the foyer upstairs.

Of course now I have to think of something else to use in the foyer!

Look you can see the reflection of my china cabinet in the mirror!  If you sit on the floor....LOL

I don’t mind cleaning my living room since it mostly involves dusting and moving stuff around. It doesn’t really feel so much like cleaning.  More like fluffing. Now kitchens and bathrooms they always “feel” like cleaning jobs to me!

Do you give yourself "rewards" as motivation to get cleaning jobs done? I do. I tell myself one hour of so and so and then I can sit down for 15 minutes and look at such and such magazine, or check email etc. I use a timer otherwise I'll lose track of time. Or if I do this big job then I can "play" house for a while. Things like that. I also like to listen to books or music on my iPod if I'm cleaning something I don't like cleaning (like bathrooms). 

What do you do to motivate yourself to get the cleaning done or do you enjoy cleaning and don't need any extra motivation?


Mrs Evans said...

I bribe myself with my latest netflix, which lately has been scrumptious british mysteries like Rosemary and Thyme:) I get up, shower, do all my chores, then I can sit and work on something like knitting or quilting while drinking up all the macabre loveliness!

Vee said...

Exactly! I tell myself that I can have some blog time or a snack. Silly things we do to motivate us, eh?

I love your mantel and the stripy candles are excellent transition pieces from summer to the more colorful fall things. And I love the fishing basket(?)that you're using in the front and I also like the reflection of your dishes in the mirror.

Hope that you get a cooling trend soon. I bet that you folks are some tired of heat and humidity.

julie - eabdesigns said...

Love your updates. I plan dinner parties to motivate me to do some serious cleaning. My husband always jokes that it's a good thing I like to entertain, otherwise the house may never get cleaned!

Diana said...

We are so hot here, too -- 3 months of 90+, and mostly 95-100! The red and the citrus green look so good in your living room -- that color combo could make such a fresh, whimsical Christmas I think.

I reward myself for cleaning with 1. lighting my expensive citron du sud candle for a bit and 2. a cup of chai.

sunshine said...

I just put my summer decorations away last week. I like to live like a "minimalist" for awhile before I start decorating for the next season. :)

I use a time as well. I'll clean for 15 minutes then give myself 10 minutes on the computer as a reward. I just keep switching back and forth like that until I'm finished.

I find buying something new or finding a forgotten treasure that I can decorate with also does a lot to get me motivated. :)

I'm with you! I hate cleaning kitchens and bathrooms.. ughh.

At first I thought you wrote that we could see YOUR reflection in the mirror. LOL
I was straining to try and catch a glimps of you... ;p


Darlene said...

I love your decorations on your mantle. Looks so beautiful. Those candles are really cute!

I put my stereo on Disco music when I clean and just get after it while boogy~ing!

laurie @ bargain hunting said...

Manuela, Nothing is safe from a can of spray paint at your house, and I love that! I need to get those spray paint cans out more often. Your mantel looks beautiful, and Ilove the big basket of flowers in the fireplace. I start out cleaning and before I know it, I'm rearranging something. When I'm done, I feel like I cleaned the room (so my house is not very clean.) You are sooo right -not much rearranging to be done in a bathroom. Kind of takes the fun out of my kind of "cleaning"! laurie

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

I've been cleaning on and off all day. I have to get off this computer and make myself do it and now everything is fresh and clean. Still working on the laundry and now it is time to cook supper. You are right still too hot for fall stuff, but I am so ready.

HeathahLee said...

My motivation is making a list and being able to check things off. It's also a DE-motivator to get on the computer! I always find things to distract me! : )

Shelia said...

I always enjoy my tiny self so much here, Manuela! Your decorating style makes me smile! Love your new look on the mantle and those are adorable candles! I love it that you've used a mirror in the opening with the pretty flowers! You always do such a wonderful job of everything! :)
Be a sweetie,
Shelia ;)

mamajuliana said...

What motivates me to clean right now is my baby going off to college. I did not get much done this summer because there were 'college things' laying around and I found it hard to get enthused about cleaning. Now all of those college things are gone and I can once again work on my home. Junior's bedroom is going to get a good deep cleaning and our 'school room' is becoming my sewing-reading-relaxing room!

I love the summery look of your home. I am waiting to 'autumn-ize' our home! But that time is coming!

Southern Fried Gal said...

Everything looks so bright and cheery! I love your tips for turning eyesores into something new and interesting. I also love your wisdom on getting the not-so-fun stuff completed. I may have to give that a try! Usually I just invite someone over to give me incentive but it's no fun to rush around to look fresh and clean before they arrive!

Andrea said...

I love how colorful it is. I am with you. I am not ready to put out my fall way to hot and humid. I am excited though. I can't wait to see what you are doing to yours.

Adrienne said...

what a very pretty basket of flowers... i agree it is waaay to hot for fall things, but i am looking forward to it!

Angie said...

Maybe I should try your method and I might actually get some things done. I always put off cleaning 'cause I'd rather decorate! The mantel looks so cute. You know I love the colors!

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

Your mantel looks fabulous. I love the red and the books and flowers are wonderful. The basket of flowers are perfect in front of the mirror. Every week when I clean it seems like I switch something around. I just can't seem to leave things alone. Hugs, Marty

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

P.S. This is perfect for Table Top Tuesday. I hope you'll link up. Hugs, Marty

mizdarlin said...

I hate cleaning so much that it takes a mini-disaster to get me know, like when you trip over something and almost kill yourself and look around for somebody to yell at and remember..
Oh, yeah...I live alone...

Kathy @ Creative Home Expressions said...

I hate cleaning, but I like the way you think, Manuela. I may just need to offer myself a "reward" of some kind. Especially since I do have books and magazines I'd like to read, and, of course, blog posts!

Cindy (Applestone Cottage) said...

I love your big basket of colorful flowers Manuela! And the mantel is so cheerful and pretty!
I'm like you, I try to come up with little rewards to keep me motivated while cleaning!
And bathrooms are the worst!

Paula said...

I am terrible about procrastinating when I'm cleaning. My worst habit is to read "just a few posts" and then I'll get back to work. I come by my procrastinating habits honestly, like mother like daughter. Once I'm started, I do work hard and I do it right! Sometimes I will set a timer for one hour and tell myself that after 1 hour I can take a break. Usually I'll keep on going when it goes off. What I'd really like to have is a cleaning service!

Storybook Woods said...

I too decorate to clean, because I HATE clean!!! I love the still summer/not quite fall yet look xoxox Clarice

Gumbo Lily said...

I like to reward myself for my hard work every day with coffee time. I make myself a cuppa and sit down to read blogs or emails or books.

I love the feeling when things are nice and clean.


Jennifer said...

Your living room is looking good. I love the way you move things around to keep a space fresh. For those really busy cleaning days I put on some really good, really loud music (from broadway to ABBA) and dig right in. I can accomplish more to Dancing Queen than you could ever imagine!

That being said, I guess I'll clean out the refrigerator tomorrow....

Happy Monday!

Theresa said...

GORGEOUS! I love the mantle, ALL of it! Great flower arrangement in the fishing basket! I also love it that you have a mirror in your fireplace!

I have been cleaning today too! It is way too hot to even think about fall. I WANT to, but it is just too hot!

Enjoy your evening Manuela!

Glenda/MidSouth said...

Like those candles! When it got so hot & humid I slowed down, but "they" say the temps are going down a bit, so maybe I can get motivated. I need to finish up some things and give this place a good cleaning.

Sue said...

I love the mixing of the green with the red in those candles. I need to paint some candlesticks- and right now, I'm thinking red might just be the ticket. :-)
That basket of flowers in front of the mirror looks so fresh, Manuela. It ALL looks so nice.
hugs, Sue

Kristi said...

Everything looks fantastic! And yes, I try to reward myself (with whatever the guilty pleasure is that day, blogs, doing a project or whatever) for getting things done! I find timing myself gets me in check :)

Mimi Sue said...

I spent years cleaning during commercials! Now that we have the DVR it's not practical...I do tell myself I'll clean til 10:00 and then I'll do something more fun. Makes me stay on task and not wander off so much. Have fun with your cleaning! Mimi

Sherry said...

Once I get going I don't mind cleaning but I do bargain with myself for sewing or reading time once I get the job done. Your room and mantle looks great. Some of the rooms in our home could sure use some fluffing.

Happy To Be/ Gl♥ria said...

Just to funny my friend the other day when my daughter was here I was telling her it took me 12 hours to clean my bedroom and she said Mom you don't just clean you room and rearrange things from all over the house ha ha!! I think maybe it just looks clean if I redo it all...Hope all is well in your world my Dear friend...Hugs and smiles to you, Gl♥ria

Anonymous said...

girl im ready for fall like now! but yeah...alabama is still too frickin hot! i love what you did! very pretty!!

Jeanette said...

I love what you did, just so lovely. I can't wait for fall.

Marianne@Songbird said...

Oh no I don't like cleaning at all. I need motivator's too, company coming over is the best one. And I usually end up playing around with my decorations too (and making a mess all over again).
Your mantel is looking great, just a hint of Fall.

Debbie said...

I do the same thing with the timer. I will reward myself with a few minutes of blog browsing after an hour of housework. (I have to watch the time THEN too...)

I love your late summer fireplace! I couldn't agree more about the fall decorations. It's just TOO HOT still for me. I love your basket there. It's perfect and happy.

Claudia said...

I feel the same way about cleaning kitchens and bathrooms. You've given me some good ideas - a timer, the ipod...

I reward myself, too. Have to!

Love your fireplace mantel, Manuela!


Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...


Since my energy level is limited, I give myself little reward "prods" such as watching a DVD or checking Google to read blogs.

It really does help.

This afternoon I need to make a large batch of cookies I promised a friend who did me a favor. My reward will be eating a few of them when I'm finished. :)

Barb~Bella Vista said...

Lovely pictures, Manuela.

Clean and play....clean and play....sounds like a winner to me. :-)


The Working Home Keeper said...

Love the changes! My reward for cleaning is usually doing something creative - arranging flowers, changing centerpieces and vignettes on dressers, spray painting, etc.

Mary Ellen

Melissa said...

I do the exact same thing! I find that when I have a reward to look forward to, it's easier to get my work done. I'm so glad I'm not the only one!

Many Blessings,

Blessedmom's Simple Home said...

It looks so sweet. I love the fishing basket filled with flowers.

Linda said...

I like your little pops of color here and there.! Such a lovely home you have!

I'm like you, I like to fluff and putter...but not scrub. (:>)

I only thoroughly clean when we are having company...most of the time I just straighten,.. occasionally I dust and vacuum...but with just the two of us the house doesn't get too messy or dirty.

Fiona said...

I love puttering (we call it pottering here in New Zealand) while I'm cleaning. Of course there are the days when a quick whip around is all I have time for.

But putting on some lovely music, lighting a candle (even in the day time - it's late winter here) and cleaning and prettifying, I think it's one of life's simple (and free) pleasures.

I adore your covered books.

T's Daily Treasures said...

Love all the color! I usually clean, and rearrange, my living room many times a year. Did a little cleaning the other day in many rooms, and although it's not a chore I like, I do feel so much better when it is done. Now if I could just get the kids to stop making messes. :/ Have a happy rest of the week. Tammy

Brenda@Cozy Little House said...

Yep, cleaning means I get to move things about and see how they look. Every time you get candles form IKEA I am dying to drive to Dallas to get some. And these are no exception!

Kelley said...

Oh, yeah! Crazy days of summer are still here. I'm GLAD you're not yet in the fall mood. It will be here soon enough. Let us all enjoy the last linger of summer while we can. Today here in Alabama (week 2 of 2) it was absolutely heavenly. Beautiful breezes, a lovely walk during which I didn't use my face-mopping hanky very much. We're moving closer to September 11 which I recently read is "National Clean Out the Garage Day." HA! If only I had one. I'm so blessed!

Yvonne @ StoneGable said...

Manuela, I love the colors you use! I am such a yellow fan. Your family room is so warm and inviting ( I can see it in the reflection).Your mantle is so bright and cheery! Now can you come and clean my house... just my family room would be fine.

Lisa said...

Love the pops of color on your new mantel accessories! Very pretty!

I don't think I usually reward myself for cleaning...maybe I should! I just enjoy the end result and I try to remember that to keep me going!

Anonymous said...

You officially gave me the cleaning bug. Don't know if it's the anxiousness I'm feeling do to sending Savy to kindergarten tomorrow, but maybe I want to start the year off right with a clean place.
Thank you Manuela for the comment on my lil garden and my swimming breakthrough.
Question, How did you paper those books on your shelf. Is it stamped paper you can buy at my local craft store?
Looks like it would be a fun project.


Melissa Miller said...

It really looks beautiful! I love the red painted candlesticks. I have a pair I could paint red.
I should try it too. :)

Kathleen Grace said...

I look forward to just a few days of cleaning and spiffing and getting rid of some things. The end result is my reward!

Dena said...

Oh my gosh, I want a faux fireplace now really, really bad! I love it!!!


John'aLee said...

I love your mantel arrangement. And that basket of flowers is just lovely! Your color scheme is the same as I have in my Master bedroom. I also love those red checked dishes in the background shelf. Do you remember where you found those?
Thanks so much for stopping by my blog. I'm so impressed with yours...I put you on my blog roll for 'home keeping'!

My Cozy Cubby said...

Hi Manuela!

Personally, I don't function as well if my house is a mess. I try to get the cleaning done and out of the way in the morning. My reward is enjoying a clean house (even if it's only for a few hours)and it gives me incentive to work on a project of my choice that I actually enjoy! When my house is clean I'm a happier person, and I actually get more done!
I like your faux fireplace, and it looks so cheery and happy! (I'm not quite ready for fall either). Your picture of the pumpkin growing in the cinderblock is awesome! You'll have to post it if it ends up being square!!


diXymiss said...

I like the way you putter and fluff! The mantel turned out beautifully ~ love the color combination, the cheery striped candles and the teXtured wicker basket filled with flowers. It's perfect for the transition to fall!

I don't eXactly enjoy cleaning (unless I'm mad), but do try to keep things tidy and love to rearrange. Perhaps I ought to read through comments for some eXtra motivation! My reward of choice is coffee with cream and a bit of dark chocolate.

PS: I eXpect the piXies to help with chores and they do a great job. My mantra is, "first we work, then we play." Their reward of choice is eXtra screentime for Webkinz or NetfliX.