Last Sunday, our neighbor Robert came by and picked up the mattress from our guest room for his new cottage.
We'd offered it to him because we'd realized that we didn't really feel the need to have a dedicated guest bedroom in the house considering we've got nine of 'em in our backyard:
(No, it's not that green yet-- that's a pic from last summer!)
So what to do with the room instead? We talked about moving the TV up there, hanging some hammock chairs... but nothing seemed to excite us as much as when Steven suggested, "What if I move my studio up there?"
It turns out, as much as he loved having a huge space and a mountain view, it was also a very public space with a distracting view. Our front door leads directly into that room and the stairs are open and right there too. And while you can see the mountains, you can also see where guests park so it's a lot of coming and going.
We tried to solve the privacy problem by rearranging his desks, moving shelves around to create a kind of faux-wall right when you walk in, and more, but nothing ever fully worked.
It looked significantly better when we gave the shelves a few coats of glossy black back in January, but it still wasn't functioning that much better which let's face it, is rather important in a work space.
One of the many things I like about Steven is that when he has a good idea, he acts on it immediately. So yes, we moved his studio that very night!
We had a momentary challenge when realized we'd have to dismantle his desk to get it through the door--
But then we kept going strong! Brought all the book downstairs and made a total mess...
And brought up some of Steven's stuff to his new space. I say "some of" because he decided to bring up only what he uses every day.
I forget where, but last year I read about a family who moved to a new apartment very near their old one (I think it was a duplex and they moved to the upstairs unit...?) and rather than moving all of their things at once, they went to their old place to get their things only when they actually needed them. In this way, after a month or so, it became really clear what they could live without and give away.
Anyway! Steven's new space is nicely streamlined like that. And he loves it! Here's what it's looking like after just a few days of use:
I'm so happy that he's enjoying it so much already!
So what did we do with the huge room downstairs? Well first, we put all those shelves to use and arranged our books:
Next we moved our dining room table in for a belated Seder with friends:
Then we moved it back and I drove to Albany and BOUGHT A BABY GRAND PIANO!
I know, that probably sounds borderline insane and random, but I've been dreaming of getting a piano of my own since, well... since I moved out of my parents' place at eighteen! And it never made sense til now. I kept moving, I lived in apartments, and now, here we are in a big ol' house without plans to move any time too soon so voila! And oh my god, it's only been here a few hours but already it makes me SO. DAMN. HAPPY.
I pulled out all my old sheet music and played through years of pieces. I played my favorite piano piece in the world first, Debussy's Dr Gradus ad Parnassum, and I literally cried.
I'd been looking pretty seriously for the past few months, but it all came together the morning after we'd moved Steven's studio I pulled up Craiglist again and there it was: a baby grand built in 1935, lovingly played by a lifelong musician since the 50's, in great condition, an hour and a half away, and within my budget...! It had to be viewed that day and picked up no later than the next. So when I finished doing coffee for guests I drove straight to Albany, played it for thirty seconds and surprised the hell out of the guy when I turned around on the bench and said immediately, "I'll take it." I hired VIP Piano Movers to pick it up and just like that, it's now mine!
I have to wait about two weeks to tune it-- let it adjust to the temperature and humidity etc of the house.
But it's in tune enough to play around on for now!
I'd love to get a big beautiful rug for the room... the sound is a little bouncy with all the wood, and come on, it would look amaaaaazing.
For now, rug or not, I'm more than happy to simply play an play and play as Steven works away upstairs...
(What is I Love Lamp? This is I Love Lamp.)