Hanging Art With Care

The walls of our first house were almost impossible to safely decorate. The drywall and plaster crumbled wherever we tried to insert a nail. Pictures hung on old hooks left by the previous owner in the oddest locations. We believe his preference for tall furniture drove the picture placement to what it was. Our furniture, being more generic in size and shape, opened wall space where it had previously been obscured by towering antiques.

We moved after 11 years to our current home. Here the materials are newer and we can tap a nail almost anywhere we please. The previous owner left his hanging points in place when he moved out. It seems he was a meticulous person. Each nail is perfectly centered on its particular surface. Almost all are at the same height from the floor.

What do we display? That is up to my wife. She is the artistic one. The rooms are accented with samples of her various artistic pursuits. Sure, we have some pictures of our kids, but most of the wall decorations are my wife’s own creations. Painted ceramic three-dimensional fruits hang in the kitchen. A mosaic tile project sits on the shelf in another room. Oil paintings of differing subjects (landscape, fairies, plants) are in with the pets.

I used to think we needed to attend local art shows searching for beautiful works to display in our home. I realized early in our marriage that we do not. As young married people with small children, money was too tight to spend on professional or semi-professional art. With time, creating her own art allowed for personal growth and stress relief in a way nothing else could. The result is a house accented with original artwork that reflects her taste that truly makes it a home.

What do you display on the walls of your home — photos, posters, artwork, nothing? How do you choose what to display? What mood are you trying to create?

Being Frugal is Not the Point

Men, if you wait until the day after Valentine’s Day to purchase the drugstore chocolates or candy because they get marked down to 50% off, you lose.

Women want the milestones observed on the day, not late. Birthdays, anniversaries, New Year’s Day, Christmas, and so on. This arbitrarily selected date set to give those in the northern hemisphere a celebration day to break up the monotonous winter with a day primarily benefiting florists, restaurants, greeting card, and candy makers is still important to her.

Waiting even one day and doubling your purchasing power on the discounted items is failure. The holiday is not mathematically based. It is definitely emotional.

Be a man. Crack open the tight wallet. Pay full price.

Time is running out. Today you will only spend money. Tomorrow, you will pay in other ways less pleasant.

Open the Bedroom Door

I need air to move when I sleep. Waking up in a closed room with stuffy air interferes with a good sleep. Another reason is to dissipate the buildup of toxic methane released under the covers.

As newlyweds, it was a silly prank to release gas and flip the sheets over your partner’s head to trap them with it. (Ah, youth!)

As mature adults whose digestive systems seem to have changed over the years into factories for pungent fumes, it isn’t funny at all.

Ever have a dream where you are drowning and can’t catch a decent breath? Then slowly drift into wakefulness and realize the oxygen deprivation caused by methane displacement was intruding upon your dream state? (Yeah. Me neither)

This Valentine’s day, do yourself and your partner a favor. Leave the bedroom door open while sleeping. Perhaps even run a small fan near your bedside table to force air movement away from the sheets.

Write an ode to someone or something you love. Bonus points for poetry!