The living room rug was the same rug that sat under the dining room table in my childhood home. It is a large braided rug of different shades of blue. Maybe there is a glint of yellow here and there. That rug has to be at least the same age as I am. I don't remember a time when it was not in that house. The braided mix of blues are twisted into my memories just as tightly as it is woven. I think there was a time that this rug was in the den or maybe the living room. It moved around the house depending on my mother's moods. Mostly though, I remember it under the dining room table, the place my family would gather around every Sunday until one by one, us kids flew the nest. The dining room table remained the central gathering place for holiday meals and birthday celebrations and just regular visits, but the frequency of gatherings changed as our family shifted like tectonic plates, forming continents of our own.
I don't know the circumstances of how that rug came to be free right around the time Chris and I moved to KCMO. Mom had put a new rug in the dining room ages ago, but still held on to the blue braided rug, moving it around rooms. Any way, we moved with hardly any real furniture and needed a rug. Mom gave us the rug. Just another piece of hand-me-down home furnishing. I am the Peter Pan of home furnishings. I didn't buy my first couch until my late thirties and even then it was more of a love seat than a couch. Up until then, couches and bed frames and even some chairs where all pieces that friends or family had grown tired of and replaced with something new. Between hand-me-downs and thrift store finds, our house was a miss matched quilt of mid century modern, industrial and 80s style. This Peter Pan has started to grow up and buy her own furniture. Sure a lot of it has come from IKEA, but at least I have put more thought and care into the pieces Michael and I have purchased. Now our style is more mid century IKEA. I still have the metal office credenza that we use for a TV stand partly because I still really like the hidden storage and partly because it is the heaviest piece of furniture on the planet. I was barely able to move it far enough from the wall to paint and even then, I moved it just enough to fit myself and a paint roller. If we one day turn this house into a rental, that credenza will be part of the deal. It stays with the house.
Our house is morphing and changing. Michael has cleaned out and set up a space for himself in the basement. The Cabbage has six cubes of toys in the bookcase now. Her clothes have taken up one of the large drawers under my bed. That draw needs to be lifted slightly when pulled out so as not to catch on the rug. Catching on the rug causes the screws in the front of the drawer to come loose and eventually the drawer falls apart when being pulled open. I got fed up with putting the drawer back together once a month and took all of her clothes out of that drawer. I gave her two drawers in my dresser. I've spent the last two weeks constantly opening up the wrong drawers in search of my own underwear. I decided that it was time that the Cabbage had her own small dresser, so Michael and I made a trip out to IKEA to see what our options were. We picked out a dresser and then headed down to the first level where I got distracted by the rugs. It was decided that after we had touched every single rug in the department, that we would move the yuck brown rug from the dining area to Michael's new set up in the basement and the living room rug to the dining area. Then we would put a new rug in the living room.
We rolled out the new rug yesterday. We placed old dumbbell weights on one edge to flatten the end that wanted to remain curled from being rolled into a tube for so long. The weights are lined up along the edge like a fence. Michael and I stood on the hardwood looking down at the new rug. Josephine laid down just on the other side of our 'fence'. We joked about how long it would take her to get out. It is different. I am still getting used to the idea of it in that space with the old rug moved to the living room. I walk across the new rug with my bare feet and notice how different it feels compared to the old rug. The old rug has been worn smooth. You cannot feel the braids in the rug. The new rug has texture to it. You can feel the individual cords that make up the pile of it. It feels nice under my feet.
My house has become our house. It is more layered and textured. A mix of controlled cluttered chaos. A mix of us.