Hooked

by DaniGirl on October 19, 2010 · 10 comments

in Life, the Universe and Everything, Rants and rambles

There are a lot (no really? A LOT!) of things I love about the new house. I love the layout, and the location. And the light — oh my sweet lord, the morning light pouring in to the kitchen and then the setting sun bathing the whole front of the house in a rich, warm, yellow, delicious light… it’s truly gorgeous, even moreso than I expected.

I love the extra space in the kitchen, although it’s a new challenge to have to actually walk 10 steps across the kitchen to get something, as opposed to my tiny galley kitchen where everything was literally within arm’s reach. I’m happy to trade the extra space we lost in the master bedroom for the space we gained in the main living space, and even though I’m still a tiny bit anxious about having the big boys down in the basement, they are not in the least bit concerned about it and in fact love their giant-sized and not-shared bedrooms.

We’ve made good progress in getting stuff out of boxes and organized, although there is still a frightful amount of work to be done. We’ve probably got about 65 per cent of the boxes unpacked, and I have a pretty good idea of which box holds what of the boxes that remain. Unfortunately, of those boxes that remain, a large number of them are full of stuff that never really had a proper home in the last house, either. Those are the boxes that you keep shuffling off into the corner, saying, “Oh, I can’t deal with this one now. I’ll get to it later.” I figure we should be fully unpacked some time in, oh, say November. Of 2011.

One of the most challenging issues to date has been mapping our old daily routines onto a new house. It’s taking me forever to get ready for work in the mornings because I am if nothing else a creature of habit, and my habits don’t work in the new layout. I’ll finish one task, like brushing my teeth, and find myself in full-stop mode, standing rather perplexedly in the middle of the bathroom, flummoxed as to what to do next. Muscle memory would have previously carried me through to the next task in the routine, but with nothing where it is ‘supposed’ to be, I have to actually stop and think about what I have to do next and, more importantly, where the stuff is that I need to accomplish that task. Like, my socks. Getting dressed in the old house never taxed any of my pre-coffee brain cells!

And the thing that is most vexing about mapping my old routines onto the new house? There aren’t enough hooks. In fact, there aren’t any hooks at all.

We are, in general, lazy people. We seek to exert the shortest possible amount of effort on activities that involve housekeeping. Hanging a jacket up on a hanger takes four seconds of effort, but draping one over a hook takes less than two. If there are no nearby hooks, any nearby structure will do — chairs, railings, whatever. I’m sure we’d drape things over the dog if it weren’t for the infernal shedding.

The old house was filled with strategically placed hooks — by the front door, in the bathrooms, in the bedrooms. Anywhere one might want to divest one’s self of the contents of one’s hands (jacket, backpack, purse, towel, scarf, just about anything hookable!) there was a hook to prevent the unceremonious dumping of said contents onto the floor.

The problem is that the new house also doesn’t lend itself to the strategic placement of hooks in the same way the old house did. The entryway, while charming with its double door, allows space for neither coat hooks nor even a natural spot for a purse-resting key table or even a set of key hooks. I’m still puzzling over how to make that work.

The bathrooms are another area that cry out for hooks. While I have not yet managed to acquire new waste bins for them (attractive plastic Farm Boy bags currently fill that role, dangling from available knobs) I did set out on the very first day to acquire some bathroom-suitable hooks. We’re minus one shower in the new house, and the main and downstairs bathrooms simply don’t have enough towel bar space to accommodate five bath towels and bathrobes on a regular and rotating basis.

In my new favourite store, the Manotick Home Hardware, I carefully contemplated our needs and decided on a lovely set of over-the-door hooks that would give us a place to hang the here-to-fore homeless bathrobes and wet towels. And imagine my consternation when I arrived home, tore open the package, and stood in slack-jawed dismay at the door to the main bathroom. The 1960s bungalow special feature: a pocket door.

Foiled again.

Speaking of hooks, I think I’ll end this rambly and vaguely incoherent post here with this poor excuse for a conclusion, before the big hook comes up to yank me off the stage. (This is the kind of post you get when I have hours upon hours of time to think about blog posts while doing menial labour but not enough time to actually execute the ideas into coherence!!) šŸ™‚


{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Madeleine October 19, 2010 at 11:35 am

I am with you on hooks and laziness.

My husband will walk from the front door to the back door to put his jacket on those hooks, but my daughter and I were slinging them over the railing until we finally put in front-hall hooks.

Coat tree for the front hall? But find a really sturdy one, unlike most which require careful balancing.

2 Marianne October 19, 2010 at 2:00 pm

I hear you about the hooks. On our to-do list is to install two rows of them in our laundry room/garage entry. Right now, everything ends up either on teh floor in there or draped over the banister in the front hall.

For towel racks, until I read you have a pocket door I was going to recommend a rack that attaches to the hinges of your door and has arms sticking out at intervals, like this one: http://www.hingeit.com/ We had one at our old house due to a very small bathroom, and also have one in our new home in the master bath because despite the room being quite large, there is otherwise nowhere to put towels in anything approaching reachable distance from the shower. We bought ours at Stay Organized on Merivale Road (http://www.stayorganized.com/) — a shop that has lots of innovative storage solutions, so they might be able to offer something else that could help you with your hook dilemma.

Lastly (and most importantly!) I’m glad to hear that you’re loving your new home. And dont’ worry, I’m sure it won’t be long until you have new routines and you can once again sleepwalk through your morning šŸ™‚

3 Madeleine October 19, 2010 at 2:15 pm

Oh, we had that towel rack problem at our “new” house too. There is literally no place to put a horizontal rack in our tiny bathroom. We got one of these:

http://www.ikea.com/ca/en/catalog/products/60047896

It’s similar to what Marianne suggested, but it screws into the wall. Ours is attached to the door frame between the door and the shower curtain.

4 freemommiestuff October 19, 2010 at 3:24 pm

http://bit.ly/4EQ38v Hooked: There are a lot (no really? A LOT!) of things I love about the ne… http://bit.ly/c2rVg2 http://bit.ly/5bAgvn

5 Coco October 19, 2010 at 4:04 pm

Sunshine is the most important thing. All else will fall into place.

6 liz October 19, 2010 at 4:12 pm

Looking at your entryway, I’m wondering what’s to the left as you come in? Can you put hooks there?

If not, can you put your over-the-door bathroom hooks over front door half that you won’t be opening much?

If not, can you put the over-the-door bathroom hooks over the railway near the stairs?

7 Paula October 19, 2010 at 7:51 pm

You will figure out your house routine in no time, hooks or no hooks. Glad that you are loving your new home even more than you thought you would.

8 Valerie October 19, 2010 at 7:51 pm

we have the same problem – got used to lots of hooks in the old place and really miss them now. The light sounds lovely, though!

9 Chantal October 21, 2010 at 8:03 am

I think we are soul sisters. Our town houses were almost the same layout and now we have the same hook addiction. It is a big problem at my house and I am almost to the point of getting rid of hangers and just putting hooks in the front closet. Then I would be guaranteed the jackets would stay off the floor šŸ™‚

10 Rae October 22, 2010 at 9:48 pm

Hooks alone were not doing it for us, but neither was the closet. My solution? LOCKERS! I went on Kijiji and found a section of lockers – 3 double stacks – for 6 lockers. Now we all have one. It holds bookbags, sweaters, coats, helmets, and I have baskets to install for small things like mittens and such soon with cup hooks..

I go through about once a month and make sure nothing’s been missed (like a school milk…. ew.)

They take up a good chunk of the entryway, but totally worth it IMO.

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