The Man Cupboard

Hello!  It’s been a couple of weeks, but I’m back again. 

It was the Hubby’s birthday last week and I had been thinking for a while as to what I/the kids could get him. It then dawned on me that I rarely use the desk in the lounge room anymore preferring to either work in my studio or home admin on the lounge or dining table. I decided to remove the desk and shelves and buy my man a cupboard, going halves with Mum-O. The cupboard compliments the other already in use in the lounge room. It is from IKEA and is from the Liatorp series. 

I took the day off work (so sneaky – Hubby thought I’d gone to work and I had to tell him white lies all day!) and got Dad round to help me construct the cupboard. 2 hours later the cupboard was built and Dad headed off home to let me get on with making it look pretty. 

Hubby doesn’t really collect anything now, but in his younger years he collected Midori Illusion Shakers, Jim Beam anything, Ford items, Coca Cola items, Manchester United items and Converse items. 

I started out with the middle shelf as the petrol pump at the back was the tallest item to be decorated around. I then purchased my Hubby the Ford book for his birthday and used a combination of symmetry and height to display the balance of the items. 

On the top shelf I placed his Red Bull collection and some miscellaneous items, again utilising the height of each item to determine the layout. To the right I placed a photo of him in his current football (soccer) uniform and some photos of him in his heyday.  I was having trouble getting his medallion to stand up so used some 3M strips to hang it on the back of the cupboard. 

The next shelf down I placed his Midori Illusion Shakers – collected from night clubs circa 1998. I decided to dress this up with a framed Cheers sign, cocktail glasses from the kitchen and we bought him a cocktail recipe book. 

The shelf below the Ford items houses his Jim Beam collection which will be a growing collection as he still likes to drink this today. I again adopted a mixture of symmetry and height to display these items. 

Overall, Hubby was excited to see this when he got home from work, thrilled to have his items in the lounge room again, and shocked I’d managed to trick him into thinking I’d been at work all day 😀!

My tips for creating vignettes/shelf displays:

  1. Odd numbers work well. I don’t know why, they just look good. 
  2. Vary the height of items, working from tallest at the back to shortest at the front. 
  3. Stick to a theme. 
  4. Less is more but if going with more, consider layers/textures. 
  5. Use colour in your decor items to blend in/compliment the colours already used in the room. 
  6. Consider a level of symmetry. 

Have you redecorated a room in your house lately?  Tell me all about it!

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Overwhelmed. Some things I know. 

On 4 May I was involved in a minor car accident. I was fully stopped to turn into our street and a car rear-ended my car.


Whilst I have no physical or psychological injury from the accident something has changed in me. I have been highly emotional and more tired than usual. 

No, I am not pregnant! Lol.  Maybe it’s a moon cycle/stars aligning or not aligning thing. Who knows. 

There have been many tears shed in the last month over various things. Some minor that would normally have minimal impact on me. So to combat this unusually emotionally high period I have tried to keep things simple and do some basic things I like/enjoy or have needed to do. 

It started with a full body massage two Saturday’s after the accident. I always hold stress in my back from my shoulders all the way down to my bottom. I was sore. So sore. I cried from the pain whilst the massage was taking place. The lightest touch hurt. I returned home to an empty house. I had a long soak in the bath and then went to bed with a hot water bottle, anti-inflammatories and the TV series, The Queen (very good!). I pretty much stayed here for the balance of the day. 

Tea. Tea is so good. It can be invigorating. It can be calming. It is something that I make as a habit. It is also something I make to spoil myself. The ones out of habit tend to be tea bags in a coffee cup. The ones I make to spoil myself are usually loose leaf teas in a tea pot with a special mug/tea cup and saucer and a little jug of milk. I try to take the time to sit and really enjoy it. 

Declutter. Our house is pretty good at the moment. So, I’ve been working my bottom off in the office to get usual work done asap and then I’ve been turning my attention to archiving files and turfing old briefs. Getting rid of the clutter. So good. No one else seems to care, but it makes me feel better. 

Reading. I haven’t read much for myself lately but I’ve been reading short chapter books with my daughter. Her reading is coming along so beautifully, she’ll be reading solely to me without help soon. I can’t wait. 

Kicking a ball around. Fridays are days for my son and I. I will miss these when he starts school maybe next year, if not, definately the year after. After swimming lessons we have short window before lunch and nap time to kick a ball around outside.


My husband. He truly is my best friend and my biggest support. He has held me when I’ve cried. Listened to me ramble on. Taken the kids when I’ve needed time alone or time to study on the weekends. 

My other best friend. She’s taken my calls when I’ve rung. Sent me motivational text messages. Held me when I cried. (Gosh I’ve been emotional).  She is amazing. 

Keep things simple. Unfortunately for Mr now 4, his birthday has fallen during this time. He was undecided about what he wanted to do for his birthday and settled on a party at home. I kept it very simple. One trip to Big W for decorations. One trip to Spotlight for balloons. One trip to the cake shop for fondant.  Two grocery shops to split the cost over two pay periods. Hubby took on the entertainment and outdoor tidy up.  I did the food and cleaning inside. Mum-O offered to also do some nibbles. It was a very easy and relaxed affair. Mr 4 had a great time. We got to speak to the guests. It was a great afternoon. Just don’t let him near the hot-waxy candles!

Take offers of help. If people offer, accept graciously. People do genuinely want to help. When I offer, I mean it. We are having friends for dinner this Saturday. They offered to bring something. I would usually have said ‘no thank you, but on this occasion I’ve asked them to bring a red wine to go with the beef ragu I intend making. My knowledge of wine is limited, especially red wine. They hold knowledge here. Now I won’t be apologising for the wine and I’m sure it will complement our meal perfectly. 

Take time. I am an introvert. I need time to sit and be alone with my thoughts. I can’t function well and be all that I want to be unless I have that time. This past weekend has seen me out Friday and Saturday nights. Thankfully both Saturday and Sunday during the day were quiet days and allowed me to recharge. It also meant the kids got to hang at home, create dance routines, play with the new toys, rest etc. 

I’ve probably rambled a bit too long.  I guess in short, I am trying to take things easy and be kind to myself as I go through this phase. There are no new organising jobs at home at the moment. My assignments are progressing a little slowly at the moment.  I really must submit one this week. There may or may not be a new post next week. We’ll see. I will report back. 

Tracey xx

If you’ve enjoyed reading this post, please give it a like. If you have anything to say, leave a comment, I’d love to chat. If you think it would be of benefit to someone, please share.