Tidy – chapter 2: keeping order

January 28, 2016 at 4:11 pm 3 comments

As Margaret reads from “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up”, she comes upon a sentence that stops her cold: “Keep your house in order.”
That doesn’t sound fun…


That sounded like punishment. A commandment whose highest expression of love is a clean, stainless steel kitchen with nothing in the fridge because nobody actually lives there.  As much as Margaret may ogle over magazines layouts of these kitchens, she imaginesthat the people who live there don’t actually eat. They’re a new breed of high-achieving actualizers who live on air, or smoothies, or green juice, or…


Tile is a wonderful way to warm up a kitchen

Margaret wipes the Entenmanns’ crumbs from her “Just Do(nut) it!” sweatshirt and breaths. “Thinking,” she notes. It’s day two of her new meditation practice where she affirms she is not her thoughts. She’s not sure what she is anymore, but apparently she’s not her thoughts. She just is. She is being. She is… uncomfortable. She needs a meditation nook. With pillows, and soothing colors, or something.

Tile - meditation on color

Swell Hand-Made Cement Tile

Maybe it would be better lying down. On her bed. But then she’d have to put her laundry away. She could lie on the couch, but it’s not that comfortable. It’s her mother’s couch and it’s very stiff. Firm. “You want people to be comfortable but not too comfortable. They are a guest, not a squatter.”

Margaret’s not sure where her mom came up with these ideas, but they seemed to work for her. She led an active life, full of active activities doing a lot of doing. She had activity buddies for every day of the week. Monday: Susan. Tuesday: Bob. Wednesday: Liz and Mitchell, and so on. She was a busy lady and her house was TIDY.keep-calm-and-tidy-up

Not because she tidied it, but because her housekeeper did, until she and her housekeeper had a falling out, upon which she was replaced by BarelyThere – a housecleaning app that schedules housecleaners without any of the actual fuss of human interaction. The BarelyThere person would come and go without your knowing, and your house would remain sparkling – or your money back.  Mom’s house was in order. Mom liked that.

Margaret, on the other hand, liked STUFF. Soft, fluffy stuff. Sweet stuff, salty stuff, good smelling stuff, bedding stuff, Sam’s stuff, mall stuff, online stuff, cozy stuff. So when mom died, she brought her stuff to mom’s house. She was surrounded by her stuff and mom-stuff. Her stuff was on top of mom’s stuff.


But she’s vowed to follow her mother’s final directive to make this house her home. In fact, it was on a notecard taped to her bathroom mirror covered in toothpaste spray. “My house is my home,” with a little smiley face. And she was going to do it. She. Would. Just. Do(nut). It!  She would declutter, put it in order, and fill it with her new-found magical and passionate life.

Kitchen Brio Cherry

How to make your kitchen pop! Brio Glass Tile in Cherry Red

Until one morning, she couldn’t get out of bed.Micheline

This is the second installment in a weekly series about aspiration, desperation, and that thing called life. Micheline Auger is a New York-based writer who loves color, cats and all things Modwalls.

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Putting the LUSH in Luscious Glass Tile Tidy: chapter 3 – interiors and exteriors

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Rebecca Lonergan

Founder and Creative Director of Modwalls Tile Company. Since 2005 Rebecca has been designing Fresh Tile in Colors You Crave. Shop Online at Modwalls.com.

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