Emergency Pants Preparedness
Just a Little Playground Banter

A Better, Truthier Floorplan

It's hard to believe we've been in the Yellow House for over a year. Especially since there are still boxes in the basement and several closets, and approximately 4,509.023 Yellow House-related projects we were totally going to do right away, and yet here we are. All the walls are still beige or brownish beige. I despise the ceiling fans with the force of a million ugly ceiling fans turned up to high. I still haven't replaced the super dark velvet sadness curtains in our bedroom. Framed art and photos sit propped against walls where I MIGHT want to hang them, but am still not emotionally ready to commit to a nail hole.

Other than that, the house is very lived in and homey, by which I mean cluttered and messy as fuck. Not like, gross messy (unless we're talking about the boys' bathroom but WE DON'T SPEAK OF SUCH THINGS), but just...kid messy. Five people who tend to set objects down and wander away from them and three pets who all have a lot of toys/scratching posts/pet beds messy. Small child who is currently obsessed with ripping up small pieces of paper and scattering them everywhere and a mother who is perpetually behind on laundry messy. THAT kind of messy.

The messes, however, do have a pattern to them. Each room tends to house a distinct kind of mess. And so, in honor of our belated one-year anniversary of the first time I wandered around this house, wondering what in the world I was going to put in all these different rooms, I'm going to give my past self a guide to Your New House and What All These Rooms Are Actually Used For:

(Also going to add the useless caveat that nobody will believe: But the house usually doesn't look THIS bad, but we've been traveling or been really busy for so many consecutive weekends now that the clutter/housework has gotten exponentially out of control. This weekend and next are almost exclusively dedicated to House Stuff, so please enjoy the most embarrassing "before" photos in the history of otherwise capable adults.)

THEN: A two-car garage!

NOW: A one-car garage and storage facility for like three weeks' worth of Amazon Fresh delivery totes that you will never remember to return. 


THEN: First floor laundry and powder room!

NOW: Laundry Gauntlet of Doom


THEN: Two-story family room with exposed beams and  fireplace!

NOW: Unfolded laundry depot, cat jungle gym. 

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THEN: Huge lower-level storage rooms!

NOW: First-ever disco-ball themed combination gym/drying rack room, with multiple boxes of wires serving as an in-home Radio Shack.


THEN: Fully-finished basement with built-in surround sound system!

NOW: Oversized Xbox hole with wall-to-wall Lego carpet. 

THEN: Bonus fifth basement bedroom, perfect for home office!



THEN: Large, airy kitchen that admittedly needs updating!

NOW: Hahahaha you redid the kitchen all pretty that's so cute. 


THEN: Walk-in pantry!

NOW: Hey you know all those ransacked convenience stores you see on The Walking Dead? That. 


THEN: Dining room!

NOW: Kids' craft hole and crumb depository.

THEN: Formal living room with vaulted ceilings!

NOW: Animal kingdom and the perma-answer to Where Are All The Travel Mugs?  


THEN: Bright, two-story entry foyer!

NOW: The beige-est first impression ever.

THEN: Kids' hallway with three bedrooms and full bath!



THEN: Private, upper level master bedroom!

NOW: Room of much Pinterest ambition, but mostly just a poorly decorated Sleep Hole.

THEN: Master bath with two-person jacuzzi tub!



(aka STILL the best room in the house.)



You are HILARIOUS. And also, you've described my house only I have no pets and just one kid.


Thanks for this! But unless you can add before: matching new wall to wall carpet throughout the house! and after: disgusting, smelly greyish floor of angst and sadness then I still win. Or lose? Whatever.

Kari Perry

OMG it's not just US?!


I love you* and thank you and I will go home and look at it with all kinds of feelings of validation tonight.

*in a non-stalkery, random-Internet way


"Oversized Xbox hold with wall to wall Lego carpet." I cannot stop laughing!

This makes me feel better, as I moved into a new house in mid-May and managed to put together the family room, kitchen, and master bedroom..... but everything else is shredded boxes (the dog's favorite game), haphazardly piled crap, and forgotten mountains of animal fur that may one day join forces and rise up to overtake the house like some weird sort of fur-based Yeti.

another sue

In case you ever decide to care (and please don't, as it is clear that your priorities are spot on - loving your family and making great memories), a couple of older people w/fewer reasons/excuses strategies: Park vacuum in the middle of the floor and allow guests to apologize for interrupting you. Place a few get well cards around and allow guests to understand the messy house, and who knows - maybe bring you a casserole. . .

I moved into this home 30 years ago and have yet to "make it mine". Partly because I am too busy on the computer reading wonderful things, thanks for sharing!

Paige B.

God bless you for this post!

Sue W

Furiously cyber hugging Amy! I have zero kids, one cat who sleeps all day and sings the song of her people all night and my house is *almost* like yours. We have no LEGO carpet, thank the LEGO gods!

Jennifer R

Sounds like our house. Include the impassable room of Lego, and hallway gauntlet of laundry doom. We are hosting Canadian Thanksgiving this Monday, so it should be better by the end of the weekend.
Happy that my phone can read your site again. The new format was pretty itty bitty for a few days.


Thank you so much for being real on the Internet. Your priorities are just what they should be and you're doing a great job!

Miss Dawn

Forget the nail holes. Buy some command strips and stick the damn pictures on the walls. If you don't like it whete you put it you can take it down with no damage. See that way you don't really have to commit to anything permanently. Problem solved!


I am in love with another sue and the vacuum idea. Genius!!


We moved 6 weeks ago, from California to Hawaii for my husband's job. We were in furnished rental housing for the first month, while waiting for our shipment. We downsized from 3200sf house to 2300sf. We had lived in our old house since 1997, raised 4 kids, but moved here with 2 kids. We got rid of So. Much. Stuff. And the moving company still packed and shipped 200 "items," meaning beds, furniture and boxes and boxes and boxes of stuff. Everything is unpacked. Even the stuff I didn't want unpacked. But my dh saw all the built in garage storage and emptied every single box and randomly put everything away in the garage storage. We didn't bring our full, but rarely used, china cabinet. Now all my china is stacked in the garage. Photo albums? In the garage. My purses? In the garage. If I can't find it in the house, it is In The Garage. I wanted to take a little more time to get organized, but now that everything is put away, I will never get organized. But my pictures are still leaning against the walls...


Oh my gosh, needed this SO MUCH as I stare around our house at the kids necklaces and folders and laundry from two weeks ago and wreath and ghost that needs to be hung and my glasses and remotes and backpacks and computer cords and the american flag my husband took down to replace with our fall flag (hey, i folded it -- RESPECT MURICA!) and that's just our coffee table. It helps to know we're completely normal.


Ha! I loved this. With the pile of laundry and the travel mugs, it could be a my house, albeit larger.


Yassssssss allllll of thiiiiiiissssss


Eh, I've got you beat. We've been in our place for 3 years and I still haven't painted the sunshine yellow living room/dining room a more reasonable color OR removed the busted up vertical blinds that cover the entire wall of windows in that room. Ha HA!

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