We hosted my family -- parents, siblings & spouses, nieces and nephews for Christmas last weekend. We had the date set plenty far in advance. Did that motivate me to start getting things ready early? Nope. Of course not.
The day before legions of relatives (22 of us in all) descended on my house, I decided that I had to put up curtains. My living room and dining room have been going commando -- that's curtain-free for all you non-decorator types -- for about a year. But my "all custom draperies" sister and her family were on their way. As was my "makes her own cleaning supplies and sings while she Swiffers" sister and her family. I just couldn't have them over with my bare windows showing.
(I should note here that I love my sisters. I also like them very much. They do nothing to make me feel self-conscious -- nothing other than be skinny and pretty and have kids who wear matched clothing. All of this is on me. My own crazy anxieties.)
So, I headed out with a smallish budget and a plan to get some thermal curtains for my triple-wide and double-wide windows. I struck out at JCPenney. Then I headed to Kohls, where happily, I found curtains in a neutral "mushroom" color. I bought 7 sets of curtains (odd, I know, but that's all they had and I really needed 10, but I would just make do), 2 drapery rods and headed home to hang those suckers, with a little help from Annie.
Five hours, a borrowed cordless drill (seriously, I have to get one of those things) and some colorful language later, we had the hardware installed to hang the curtains. Learning from the last time I hung drapes (in which I'd hung them without ironing them and the package creases were still in them when I took them down years later), we ironed each panel and got read to hang them.
We hung them on the short set of window first. I think it's south facing. Or maybe west? I can never remember which way our street runs. The sun was streaming in -- right through several little pinholes where the sprayed-on thermal backing obviously did not stick. I might have said "fuschia," "shell green," and a few other choice words of color.
Annie, who was standing on a chair holding up the rod, tried to tell me it was probably ok. When I insisted that she step down and step back to look, her response was, "Um, yeah. Those look like we live in a gangster house."
Oh, peacock blue.
By then it was time to get Robbie from school. After making a couple of stops to find new curtains that would match the hardware I'd already installed and would not break my bank, I decided if I just got the tie back hardware that matched the rods, then the curtains would be a little more bunched up and not have as many places to show the light streaming through.
So, I went back to the store to buy the additional hardware. I was able to install it with minimal difficulty and next to no rainbow references. Just as I was pulling the curtains into a swag in the new hardware, Mike walked in.
"Cool! Curtains," he said. "But why did you pick that color?"
At which point, my eyes began shooting daggers and I said something that sounded a bit like "turquoise-ecru-burnt sienna" and a few other of the really good colors from the Crayola box of 64.
Sensing the error of his ways, Mike quickly back-pedaled, mumbling something about the mushroom curtains coordinating nicely with the reds in the couch and the rug.
As I was still muttering shades of black and blue under my breath, Annie spoke up.
"Mom, I don't think we should host Christmas at our house again."
"Because it makes you cuss a lot."
Oh, indigo purple.