The Beginning Post
In an attempt to help gather some funds for the holiday bills to keep the holidays running smoothly for the children, I want to take my readers on a guided tour through our home in the insane hope someone might see my children as a charity case and send help their way so they don’t have to live through another empty holiday season. I’ve done my very best in 24 hours to turn this house into a home to show how hard I am working to provide the very best I can for my children. Right now my very best is battling hard with this bipolar disorder and it has wreaked havoc on my husband and the stability of the home for my children. We give our every moment to keeping me well and keeping our family safe. This does not allow for time to earn money outside the home, though we are both capable of doing work inside the home and completely willing to do so. We just cannot find any that accommodates a work from home position.
So I beg, pay me to work for you. I will paint, write, draw, talk, video tape, read, correct, teach, plan, organize, help, listen, color, or otherwise work to earn your generosity. I am begging for help like I have never begged before. But I don’t expect help to come freely – make me work just like any other nine-to-fiver has to. I’ll even videotape my work if that makes you more comfortable giving to my children. Because that is who I am doing all of this for. I am in no place to provide finanically for my family and we are paying the price of not being money-makers. Please help me take care of my children by making my children’s holiday season something to remember. I don’t need cash to accomplish that, I just need help. Help comes in many forms and so I try to beg of it vaguely so as not to inconvenience anyone considering sending charitable aid my way. But I can be deadly specific if there is a desire for me to be that way as well. I am here at your beck and call if you can just call me in a favor to whoever you know that has something to spare for a small family in Ohio who just cannot seem to get it right, no matter how hard they try, the crazy things they do to stay afloat, or the ways they stay true to their beliefs, that just keeps taking lump after lump with each passing day.
This life is too hard a burden for my mind right now. And my husband’s is going now too. I beg please send goodwill our way to get us through the holiday’s. For my children, that’s what I need.
49 N Balch Street Akron, Ohio 44303
In any home it is important to have people feel welcome the moment they step through the door. I am openly asking my readers to come into my home and check me and my family help. I want to welcome you to the Kenimond Klan or the Virtue Crew or ExploringAlura’s world or whatever you want to call us. We are a tight knit family that is in desperate need of family, friends, charity, compassion, and honest help. We don’t have much to offer in return but we do have loads of fun and family we will happily share until we get back on our feet. The best way in my mind to open ourselves up is to give a guided tour through our home. What better way to start than to welcome friends for the holiday season with a big holiday sign and some good ‘ol fun tabletop games? If I had my choice I would also have a nice seated area for people to come in and hang their coats, take off their shoes, and warm up from the cold outside. But that’s for another day… and a more prosperous time.
The main part of the living room is set up with patio furniture as a couch, a pack and play so the baby can be in the room with us, a strategically located table to accommodate groups of people playing games, a broken bookshelf for the kids to “play decorate” and a box-house for fun play. The Lamp was decorated by Prudence. The dry erase board has the details of our “allowance” system from back when we had money coming into the house. The window is festively decorated with wrapping paper on the side in which we need total coverage due to the peeping tonyas and devilish-children next door.
I try to cater to the small people in my life. Unfortunately there isn’t a lot of small people stuff that comes freely or cheaply. And so I had to make due with a little bench I found in a basement, a broken child-sized chair, a stool that was hidden from the kids and a rocking horse. The rug is strategically placed to cover a portion of the floor that is crumbling cement and converts an unusable portion of the room into a pint sized play area. Patience gave me a notebook’s worth of “swift coloring” artwork that I will be hanging to add some color and design to the space.
I love my dining room. With the huge bay window and the artistic window on the back wall, it is full of natural light and would be amazing to have big family meals in. But I don’t have a dining room table currently so instead I made the prettiest room in the house, the room where the children can free play. I festively covered the windows with wrapping paper to keep the not-really-next-door neighbors from videotaping us with their cellphones. I made the windowsill a nice storage/decorative shelf for toys and random items. I threw the stroller in there because the kids love sitting in, hiding, and pushing that thing around. And of course hidden under the zebra print is Longman Lumpy making his debut as a “comfycouch”. His big bulge is used to sit our butts on while his limp edge provides back support and his awkward egg shape makes the whole thing possible. Thanks again to Longman Lumpy for being a pal no matter what room he’s needed in.
This corner is filled with the things little girls need to imagine living life around when they get older. In my mind that means being a pro in the kitchen, keeping a magical dream house, wrangling children, and artfully decorating any area all while sitting in the director’s chair to keep track of business and make sure things get done. I don’t expect much from my children but at the same time I expect the world of them and what they choose to do with themselves in the future. This kind of expectation takes time to practice and work out the kinks. So I give my children every opportunity for success and plenty of time to play around finding what works for them.
I positioned OldManLumpy directly in front of the lower portion of the uncovered window to block the children that come up and look in our windows from our own lawn. I figured a view of Lumpy’s Backside would let them know exactly how I feel about their creeper behavior in a passive way they can’t call the cops on me before. Because they will call the cops if you yell at them from your window. That happened. But since so much negativity revolves around why I had to cover almost every inch of a beautiful bay window and make invisible the prettiest room in the house, I made sure to add my magical touch of wishing for the improbably unlikely in my little broken heart cart. The broken heart cart is used to free my mind of the things every house should come equipped with and that are missing or broken in this home. Having a physical representation of what I want but know I can’t have makes it easier to handle in my mind. Crazy but this type of crazy thinking works best for me.
Wishes for this house: A properly functioning bathroom sink-toilet-tub combo, a comfortable couch, a crib for the baby, a laundry facility that doesn’t require me walking through spider infested, dust covered, or dirt ridden floors, a dining room table and chairs, a comfy recliner, and a welcoming entryway.
One of the best things about this house is the kitchen. It has a wonderful stove that is separate from the oven. Conveniently the refrigerator allows me to pull crap out of the fridge while I’m cooking on the stove. I taped a Christmas gift box up like a picture and decoratively placed some wintry items on top of the refrigerator to spice up the room. I included Easter baskets in the mix because I feel like the whole Frosty and North Pole concept needs to be rebirthed. With the exception of a small sauce pan and a tiny skillet, you are seeing the totality of my cooking wares. We ain’t fancy up in this hizzouse.
The back wall has an ugly door and an oven to contend with. So I combatted that with ASCPA holiday wrapping paper on a window and another Christmas gift box taped up like real wall art. And it honestly brightens up the otherwise drab and dreary room. Even a little bit of trash dressed up and appreciated like art can make a space look great.
I don’t have an actual pantry and so I now have an amazing shelf my father gave me that is coming with me to every home I live in. It is the only piece of furniture that I have that is well made and universally usable and so merits the unlosable status given to items we truly cherish. I decorated this with flower boxes charity-gifted by a high school friend, a clock my daughters colored, and a pumpkin Providence secretly stole from a grocery store without Mommy noticing or caring to return. The food comes and goes depending on how needy we are at any given time. Right now we have government food money and so can afford to buy things like fresh fruits and vegetables, name brand cereal, grains, and even pop. Living large while living like trash. It’s a duality of life I just cannot grasp.
Almost all of my dishes are dirty in this photo, however neatly stacking them in the sink and decidedly storing them according to size and use makes the whole scene seem a lot less offensive. If you didn’t know any better you could look at this picture and think I run a tight ship in a house with running water. You’d be wrong, but this picture makes it seem prettier than it actually is. And that’s one reason why you should never trust a photo to prove what is really going on in someone’s life. Photos can be doctored in more ways than one, especially when all it takes is tactfully arranging dirt, trash, and garbage to make a house look like a home. The true trick is making all that junk feel homely which is what I have a knack for. And keeping knickknacks to add my vanilla-jane flavor to any room – even if one of the knickknacks is a decapitated princess with a nipple as a witch’s hat of sorts to keep it from falling off.
This dark picture is my attempt at turning a communal area into a storage facility to accommodate my little people. At first the hallways just had the cubes (which I got off the side of the road by my green guy’s house) keeping all the girls’ clothes. To my frustration, little people do not care about neatly stacked and folded clothes and so quite often I would find my work thrown all over the place and ruined within hours of being finished. To rectify that and to stop people from stacking stuff in my room I pulled an extra dresser I had swiped from the children’s room and placed it in the hallway and added the cubes to the top. This gave me a drawer for underwear, one for socks, one drawer for big kid pants and “big” items, and another drawer for dresses and coat-like items for Providence. Up in the cubes I was able to arrange the clothing in stacks that make sense to me and the kids: Provi-pants, Provi-shirts, Provi-warm-shirts, long sleeves, short sleeves, dresses, and Patrick-Henry clothes. On the way I ave artwork color by Patience which I love the fact that it’s Disney princesses decorating a children’s dressing room.
It is my belief every home should tell the story of who is living there and what they value and how they think. Everyone in my home is full of wonderful magic that sweeps me off my feet and makes me fight against all odds to make a happy ending. In the room where the best proof of the magic Daddy and I cook with exists, I like to cover the walls with their art and my dreams. A bright pink color for their brightly colored dispositions, a box full of buddies for them to heap on loads of love and practice carrying epic tons of love for different kinds, shapes, and colors. I even decorated the room with Hello Kitty party decorations because my Little Prudence has always loved Hello Kitty. There’s even a little black cauldron for them to boil some trouble and cook themselves up something fishy. And some heat to keep them warm even on the coldest of nights.
I feel like kids need to spend lots of time creatively thinking to exercise their rapidly expanding brains. Coloring, writing, drawing, painting, or even makebelieving are very real parts of what it takes to embrace children’s natural creative force and harness them into little child play-horses… children who play non stop but work around the clock to take care of business while having fun the whole way. This side of the room was provided for by Grandma. She surprised us one day with the whole setup. It didn’t officially get this prominent of a position until I got out of the hospital and realized how little I was providing to the children with what I already had in the home. Turns out we don’t have much but when looked at from the proper perspective we have more than we need to turn out more than proper adults and more mature grownups than are currently “grownup” today.
This is the wonderful Queen sized bed setup we have for our future queens living large like pretty princesses. Each animal is laid out how each child sleeps at night. Everyone has their own blanket and pillow and enough space to sleep comfortable. Even Prudence wants to sleep in the bed and she usually prefers sleeping on the floor! It makes me so happy knowing that my littlest angels are resting peacefully at night in a room painted with the color of their mother’s love and decorated with the pieces of her heart and mind that should keep them sleeping soundly for the rest of their long lives.